HOA Community Tries to Oust President

"Why don't you show up to the meetings with all the people? We're trying to vote you off," yelled a homeowner to the HOA president.

And that right there sums up the friction between the Cobblestone Community's homeowners and their association president Blake Kenya.

"We have had practically no voice, and we want to bring everything back to the community,"
homeowner Merinda Hutchings Donovan told her neighbors.

It was a common complaint from the nearly 50 neighbors who gathered on a Saturday morning to say that their homeowner association president, Mr. Kenya, won't allow new elections and wanted $100 to make copies of the homeowners' association books.

"It's not a dictator situation; we all have something to say," piped in another neighbor.

At the association's recent annual meeting, Merinda Hutchings Donovan, one of the neighbors in this well-kept, middle class, Austell neighborhood, says homeowners asked for new board member elections.

Hutchings Donovan, explained, "He basically stated last month that he was not going to allow it."

So some in the community sent out a flier urging homeowners to meet at the public library to talk about their concerns. Mr. Kenya pushed back circulating his own "alert" calling the meeting a "scam," calling organizers "oppositionists." He said he even notified police.

The Fox 5 I-Team asked him how it's a scam to have a private meeting in a public facility.

"It wasn't private. I have the leaflets, the actual ones that went out. They put the board on there," said Blake Kenya Cobblestone Community HOA president.

He says organizers claimed it was a board meeting. Neighbors say, no, they simply invited the board to attend.  Instead of joining in, the Cobblestone Community's message board read that Saturday "No Meeting Today." So a neighbor positioned himself under it to say, yes, there is.  Police were called.

The man with the sign told the gathering, "They told Blake I had the right to stand over there. I just want everyone to know he's doing everything in his power to keep us from coming together."

The by laws show that board member terms max out at three years. Neighbors says he's been there long past that. Mr. Kenya himself told the Fox 5 I-Team "It's been a long time."

Another frustrated neighbor said, "One person, not even the president of the United States of America, should have that kind of power."

But, Mr. Kenya said he was in recent years re-elected.

"We held elections. Yes, ma'am. I'm going to let you see everything in writing," he said.

But Mr. Kenya later called to say he couldn't show us any records - voting records, spending records, none of it - because of pending litigation with 15-year resident Stephen Green.

"It's comical!"

Homeowner Stephen Green says he didn't pay this year's association dues in protest, in part, over not being able to see an accounting of how their money is being spent.

"I didn't pay this year, but I paid the other 14 years."

The association put a lien on his property. Mr. Green sued saying the Cobblestone Community Homeowners' Association, according to the secretary of state's office, dissolved back in 2005. The association counter-sued calling his lawsuit "frivolous" and "abusive." That same day, Cobblestone re-registered with the state.

Meantime, many of the other neighbors are circulating a petition to have new elections and a fresh start.

"He doesn't want to give it up for some reason. This means a little more to him for some reason, " said Merinda Hutchings Donovan.