PHOENIX — A new law is giving Arizona homeowners a chance to push back against homeowner’s association regulations over what flags can fly on their properties.
Governor Doug Ducey signed HB2010 into law on Monday. The new law allows homeowners to fly flags supporting the country, military, first responders, and law enforcement regardless of rules or regulations from homeowner’s associations.
Republican State Representative John Kavanagh who authored the bill said the legislation came after someone reached out to him over concerns an HOA would not let them fly a flag honoring first responders during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“A lot of people want to express their appreciation to these first responders by flying the flag, but a small number of HOA’s prohibit it. This bill states they can’t do that. People have a first amendment right to honor our heroes,” said Kavanagh.
But the changes do not protect all flags.
For the past two years, Cher McCoy has been going toe-to-toe against her Gilbert homeowner’s association in a fight to keep her Pride flag standing tall in front of her home.
“It hasn’t been really great. They’re not really receptive. HOA already has enough power over homeowners,” McCoy said.
The bill would not protect McCoy and others from their HOA’s if they wanted to fly a Pride flag, or flags that support social causes like Black Lives Matter.
“If I want to fly a Black Lives Matter flag. I should be able to do it. It’s not anything political,” she said.
She said the Pride flag outside of her home isn’t a statement, but a sign of welcoming members of the LGBTQ community.
Kavanaugh said he personally would like to see all flags being flown no matter what, but said getting the bill passed was all about the votes.
“Unfortunately there were not enough votes in both chambers of the legislature to give such freedoms that non-HOA homeowners have,” he said.
McCoy said the law is a potential first step in reigning in unreasonable and oppressive HOA’s.
She said if her HOA uses the law to try to stop her from flying her Pride flag, she’ll be ready to go back into the ring.
“If they try to take it from us, I’m going to have to fight back.”
McCoy said she plans to reach out to Kavanagh to discuss her issue.
Representative Kavanagh said he wants to continue to expand the rights of homeowners.
“I will continue as people bring to my attention the egregious actions of these small number of HOA’s from hell. I will continue to protect people from unreasonable rules,” he said.