RE: quorum
From: Fleck (
Date: Tue, 17 Feb 2004 12:51:33 -0700 (MST)
We hold our monthly biz meetings on Sunday afternoon (4-6pm)with a common
dinner after. We skip August and Dec because no one wants to take a weekend
out at that time. We also celebrate all the birthdays for three months
before one biz meeting/quarter. We have child care for our biz meetings
which we pay for so every one can participate. We usually have 80-90%
attendance. Hope some of these things can help you.
Anne @ Jackson Place - Seattle

-----Original Message-----
From: cohousing-l-bounces [at]
[mailto:cohousing-l-bounces [at]]On Behalf Of Lynn Nadeau
Sent: Monday, February 16, 2004 7:06 PM
To: cohousing L
Subject: [C-L]_ quorum

This is about quorum, the legal minimum number for making a binding
decision. We are undecided about whether or not to reduce the requirement
for quorum.

At RoseWind Cohousing in Port Townsend, a long-built community, some of
the decision making is delegated to committees, and many sorts of meeting
decisions don't require a quorum. Except important decisions which are
defined as "Class One." This would be matters like policy, change in our
governing documents, approval of the annual budget. These require the
presence in person of someone from 51% of our households, thus 13 of 24.
Maybe 6 meetings a year have this need.

Our business meetings are one Saturday morning a month. Our process stuff
is fairly smooth and those who attend meetings are generally positive in
their evaluation of the experience.
And yet, when there is a decision requiring a quorum, our Facilitation
team has ended up twisting arms and calling in favors, to get 13
households to show up. They are sick of this and want us to reduce the
quorum requirement.

Why don't people come? Five households are unavailable for various
reasons, like not being on site. Still that leaves 19 households on site
from whom the 13 attenders could come.

My fear is that if we reduce our quorum, we are reducing our expectations
and making greater participation even less likely. We don't want a
downward spiral in participation! There is enough diversity in our group
that not every group of 10 people, for example, would be representative.

The alternative is raising voluntary meeting attendance, but that's
easier said than done. Our membership is highly involved in dozens of
"outside" projects of all sorts, and also includes people who travel,
both for pleasure and for work. Any ideas?
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  • Re: Quorum, (continued)

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