It didn't sound right to me, in fact it sounded like a giant steaming load of BS.
So I took to the internet and did some exploratory Googling and happened upon the California Civil Code section 1366 which confirmed my suspicions. There is a housing code for the state which supersedes each local CC&R your local laws can be more specific but they cannot disregard the state law. It very clearly states that you can do this *BUT* there are dollar amount limits, very specific situations in which it can/must be done, AND you have to have a quorum of half of the home owners on board.
This recent declaration violates the California Civil Code on *almost* every count.
I have a feeling someone was banking on nobody doing their homework... and that everyone would grumble, carry on in their ignorance and just take their word for it. In which regard, I'm quite pleased that the bug I placed in a few ears seems to have wiggled past the unfocused anger and manifested itself in others looking up the Civil Code as well. *satisfied grin*
My work here is not done, I don't know what is going to come of this hot mess yet, but I'm still pleased with myself for stirring the pot that needed stirring.