Re: Community meetings - frequency?
From: normangauss (
Date: Fri, 24 Jun 2005 13:23:32 -0700 (PDT)
Right now, one year after moving in, we are wrestling with the question of
which decisions need to be made in community-wide "business" meetings and
which can be made by the Board of Directors (Operations Committee),
Facilities Management Team, and Finance Committee.  In our California CC&R's
and Bylaws, two types of meetings are mentioned, Annual Membership meetings
and Special Membership meetings.  Our frequent "business" meetings are held
in lieu of Board meetings in keeping with the cohousing philosophy of
minimizing the power of the Board.  In essence, most of the decisions made
by a Board in a regular HOA are made in business meetings in our cohousing
HOA. I would say that these meetings are the equivalent of Special
Membership meetings.

We don't want our committees and teams to appear heavy handed and arouse the
animosity of some members who have bad experiences with Boards of Directors
in their former Associations.  On the other hand we are having community
meetings almost every week, and the docket of issues that need attention is
growing faster than we can get to them.

Getting a perspective on how other cohousing communities perform triage
would enable us to better plan our community-wide "business" meetings.

Norm Gauss
 ---- Original Message ----- 
From: "Sharon Villines" <sharon [at]>
To: "Cohousing-L" <cohousing-l [at]>
Sent: Friday, June 24, 2005 12:40 PM
Subject: Re: [C-L]_ Community meetings - frequency?

> On Jun 24, 2005, at 8:51 AM, jsutfran [at] wrote:
> > The issue is framed in the context of meeting frequency but could a
> > broader question could be dealing with community burnout?  OR
> > balancing personal and community?
> My first question is how do these people expect to keep a community
> going? 90 days between check ins?
> But I agree with Rob that different kinds of get togethers sound best
> during this phase. People are building their own houses so that is not
> a group effort. Having meetings just to have meetings isn't productive
> and perhaps there are no decisions the community needs to make right
> now. A lot of things are better worked out in reality after you move in
> than before when discussions are based on ideals or fears.
> Times that bring people together to discuss an issue, share a
> celebratory meal, or to participate in an activity like storytelling
> for children might be the best way to stay in touch and deepen your
> relationships without having to have "everyone" at a meeting.
> It's also a difficult time since soon, there will be a core moved in
> and many people still "out there." You will need to remember to include
> the outties in all activities the innies plan. They will easily feel
> excluded.
> Sharon
> ---
> Sharon Villines
> Building Community: A Newsletter on Coops, Condos, Cohousing, and Other
> New Neighborhoods
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