State orders new Wellington HOA election; four board candidates allege proxy ballots forged

Article Courtesy of  The Palm Beach Post

By Mike Diamond

Published November 16, 2021


WELLINGTON — The state Department of Business and Professional Regulation has ordered the homeowners association at Black Diamond in Wellington to hold a new election following claims of “massive” fraud in last May’s voting for its board of directors.

Black Diamond is a single-family, gated community of 475 homes west of State Road 7 and north of Wellington Regional Medical Center. Homes often sell for more than $800,000.

Four challengers who lost to incumbents in a close election allege that 27 proxies contained forged signatures. Their lawyer, Eric Glazer of Fort Lauderdale, submitted affidavits from homeowners who said they did not sign the proxies that are, in effect, absentee ballots. And dozens of legitimate ballots were disregarded as duplicates, according to a petition Glazer filed with the state.

“The election was wrought with fraud on a massive scale,” according to the petition filed with the state.

One homeowner says his proxy statement has forged signature

The Arbitration and Mediation Program for the agency ruled in favor of the challengers after the lawyer for the HOA, Steven Weinberg, failed to respond to Glazer’s filing within the required period of time.

Weinberg asked the state agency to reconsider. On Nov. 9, the agency refused for a second time, and ordered that the HOA hold a new election no later than the second week of January – and that the four-page letter calling for a new election be posted by the HOA within three business days of receiving the state order.

Efforts to obtain comment from Weinberg and the HOA were unsuccessful.

“The uncontested facts set forth in the petition adequately support the allegations of their being sufficient grounds to support the ordering of a new election due to improprieties in the way the May 12, 2021, election was conducted,” the state agency ruled.