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Who plans your co-op Annual Meeting?

bulletThe Board should make sure all the business gets covered
bulletThe Recording Secretary is ultimately responsible for getting the official 30 day notice out to all co-op members.
bulletCommittees (Membership Committee or others) may head up the food effort, coordinate child care, or plan a celebratory activity. Or, an ad hoc committee consisting of some Board members and other members may plan the whole event.


What happens at the Annual Meeting? What is its purpose?

bulletSee your Bylaws -- they often have a specific agenda for the meeting.
bulletCo-op Democracy: Co-op members elect members to their Board of Directors.
bulletMember Participation: Co-op members choose which committee(s) they will be on.
bulletCommunication and Education: The Treasurer reports on the Co-op's finances, the President reports on the workings of the Board, and each committee reports on their accomplishments over the year.
bulletPlanning and Goal-Setting: Members discuss and determine what things are important for the co-op to accomplish in the coming year, and what Goals will the co-op set for itself.
bulletAcknowledgments are important (but often overlooked) components of the Annual Meeting. Every member deserves to hear appreciation for the work and energy they've contributed to the co-op. Don't overlook this! A complaint often made against co-op living is that there is very little acknowledgement of folks' contributions to the co-op.
bulletFull Membership Decisions such as By-laws Amendments may happen at the Annual Meeting. Also, if there are decisions that the Board decides to turn over to the full membership for a vote, the Annual Meeting may be the time to do this.


Where should the Annual Meeting Be Held?

bulletSome place that has space for your activities
bulletSome place that meets your members childcare needs for off-site or on-site childcare
bulletSome place where folks will feel comfortable, and on neutral ground
bulletSome place that is accessible to all co-op members
bulletSome place large enough to seat all co-op members comfortably

Why have an Annual Meeting?

Check out all the "Whats" above! (Besides, it's required in your Co-op's By-laws.)

When should you hold your Annual Meeting?

Check your By-laws. Ideally, your Annual Meeting should be towards the beginning of the year, with enough time to allow for your year-end financial statements to be completed. (Some time in early March is ideal.)

What should be included in Annual Meeting Packets?

bulletThe what, where, when, etc. of the Annual Meeting, with details on childcare
bulletCover letter from Board President
bulletAgenda
bulletMinutes from previous Annual Meeting
bulletApproved budget (including breakdown of committee budgets)
bulletFinancial Statements: Balance sheet, Income & Expense report
bulletBoard Nomination form
bulletConflict Resolution Committee nomination form
bulletAny legal or policy proposals (By-Laws amendments, etc.)
bulletJob descriptions for the Board and for each Board officer
bulletJob descriptions for committees
(It is fine to ask your manager to help you put this material together -- if you have a manager)

Some good ideas from the collective co-op experience

bulletInclude a brightly colored note reminding members what they should do before the annual meeting, and what they should bring to the Annual Meeting
bulletInclude a current phone/address list
bulletAnnounce any festivities that will be happening, and give your packet a festive (not exclusively business-y) tone.
bulletGive a contact name for questions, contributions
 

 

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Unless otherwise indicated, copyright 1999 ARCH. All rights reserved.
Revised: October 02, 2003.

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