Steering Committee Meeting Notes – February 17, 2013

Steering Committee Meeting
at Yogasana
Feb. 17, 2013

In attendance:
Pat McCarty
Cathy Carver
Sheri Stein
Kristen Davis
David Bivens
Andrea Kannapell
Valerie English
Dylan Mabin
Ruth Chasek

Discussion of governance, defining purpose of Annual General
Membership Meeting.

A pastiche of general thought from those in attendance:
Good governance allows the membership the freedom to go about its
business. Steering committee must guide, mediate when there is
conflict. We have  become more open and welcoming since last fall. We
must maintain the garden, keep it open as much as possible, do what’s
right for the land as well as the members. The work next door has been
noisy. We have had a lot of positive energy from the fall. Perhaps
redefine “active members.” Learn from last year’s events. The annual
meeting is a time to elect leadership, review bylaws and review
finances. Should we increase our outreach for the general meeting?
Email is fairly thorough; the two people who don’t have email can be
phoned. Meeting is an exciting time to have ideas about what role the
garden plays in the community and what direction we want it to go in.
Great time to join together with a core group and really get started
thinking about the year, We can use the energy that has come into the
garden to set up an ambitious agenda, because we’ve learned the more
that goes on in the garden, the more goes on in the garden.

Specific agenda for March 3.

1. Reports from coordinators on the past year and forecast focus this year
Forecast for major projects: compost reconstruction, pathway
rebuilding, overhaul Web site, etc
Sheri: Explanation of BANG as land trust that holds deeds to five
member gardens and represents a coming-together of community
gardeners. It will apply for grants and the gardens will need to do
fund-raising. We do not have BANG’s budget for this year yet. Annual
meeting April 6. We will put the $1,000 loan in the budget to be voted
on at the annual membership meeting.  We are part of a larger
community now, not merely stewards but owners of 5 community gardens.
BANG will have Facebook page.
BANG only now getting its money. Anything we can loan them would be
great. Perhaps $1,000.

2. Present draft budget to be voted on. (Ruth will create draft
budget, but needs help figuring out water expenses and figuring the
budget for converting coop to greenhouse.)

3. Review bylaws — put in BANG, set new plant-by date (May 1?),
steering committee can waive requirement that steering committee
member must be a garden member for at least a year.
Institute working groups: All members must join one, plot holders must join 2?

compost: 20?
community plots — (would Ryan consider leading this working group?)  20?
watering and weeding: 20?
sidewalk/treepit maintenance & special maintenance: 10
open hours: unlimited
fundraising/grant-writing 6
events 4
children’s events 4
Do we need a membership working group? (to keep track of responsibilities).

When can you vote: must be a member in good standing to vote for at
least 3 months? Define good standing: Pay dues, join committee, come
to at least 4 garden days or take on equivalent in projects.  Plot
holders have additional responsibilities, what are they?

4. Steering Committee elections
Consider requirement for steering committee members to come to a
certain # of steering committee meetings.
Administrative coordinator
garden coordinator
membership — track open hours
chicken? or special projects?

5. renewal, keys, committee memberships

6. presentation by chicken tenders (Kristen, Andrea) and monitors (Dylan)

7. new business:
how to use coop in the summer
discussion of whether to begin a CSA program
announcements of Garden Days and steering committee meetings

Other general discussion:
We will turn off the automatic renewal function in Paypal.
Snow shoveling taken care of largely by Dylan and Pat.
Get full accounting of what the hens cost, including donations.
Try for more grants.
We should limit birthday parties to 2 weekends a month, and time limit
to 2 hours

Followup after the 2/17 meeting:

Andrea interviewed Sheila McDevitt of 6-15 Green on their
organizational system and how they monitor compliance.

At joining or renewal, members sign up for 4 two-hour shifts of open
hours, commit to two group work days, and one community assignment
(could be tending community plots, taking out the trash, treepit
maintenance, steering committee, or other roles that are guesstimated
to be a 20-hour commitment through the year). Those who need to change
their open hours organize a trade themselves.

The work teams (trash, community plots, compost, etc) self-organize
and  log their work in a google doc. They finalize the information at
the end of the season and send to the membership coordinator, who logs
the info on the membership spreadsheet.

For open  hours and group work days, there is a master sign-in sheet
in the garden.

People who have missed some of  their responsibilities can make up
hours in Leafdrop or Winter open hours. Members cannot renew until
they have made up their time.

6-15 Green has about 35 “compost members,”  who are not full garden
members. Each must turn all the bins in their assigned week, which
takes 3-8 hours. There are also Food Coop teams who turn the compost
the other weeks. So all bins are turned every week through the year.

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