At the November 18th HOA1 board meeting the directors voted to add the US code on flying the American flag. Prior to this vote, the HOA1 Rules did not specifically include the US Flag code. By adding this rule, homeowners must abide by the those rules respecting the flying of the US flag. HOA1 rules already had rules on flag pole heights.
The Board was prompted to add the Flag Code due to a homeowner flying the US Flag in an upside down manner. Traditionally, flying the flag in an upside down manner was considered a signal of distress. However, homeowners had complained to the HOA management and the board discovered that no rules regarding Flag flying were included in the HOA documents. The RCC committee recommend adding section 18 to cover this issue.
Arizona state law has strict requirements on sign display for political candidates and causes during a defined time frame for campaigning. HOA’s are required to enforce those.
While the adoption of the standard flag rules was not controversial, the HOA1 board added (18.4) language that would have prohibited the flying of any “cause flags” such as Black Lives or Blue Lives Matter, Gay Pride etc. Many homeowners showed up at the meeting to protest that their right of “free speech” was being restricted by this rule. Board members replied that their motivation was simply to head off any possible “flag wars” that could erupt if no rule was in place. The most vocal opponents were self-identified liberal members of the community. The most outspoken was the former Chair of the SaddleBrooke Democratic club, Bob Allen, who declared that the Gadsden flag was a symbol of racism and white supremacy due to its use by the Tea Party and at the January 6th Capitol riot. After much discussion and several attempts at amending the current language, the Board voted to remove the language regarding cause flags.