Re: associate membership policies
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Mon, 3 Mar 2014 07:09:18 -0800 (PST)
On Mar 2, 2014, at 7:00 PM, Philip Dowds <rphilipdowds [at]> wrote:

> At Cornerstone, we use consensus and every member's voice is heard.  Tenants 
> aren't members.  In my view, that's a problem ... But mine is the minority 
> view.

Briefly we solved this by making two classes of decisions. Class 1 decisions 
are those that related to financial and legal obligations that impact owners 
and Class 2 decisions which relate to community issues of living with each 
other. Any resident who signs an Associate Membership Agreement agreeing to 
participate in the community, participates in Class 2 decisions.

One problem with this is the Associate Members then become part of the quorum 
for Class 2 decisions. Often Associate Members participate in the community but 
not in decision-making. If they sign a form and don't attend meetings a quorum 
can be difficult to get. The quorum for Class 1 only requires a majority of 
units. Class 2 counts each person. Thus Class 1 quorum is always 23 but Class 2 
has been as high as 36. We recently fixed this by setting both at 24, but it is 
something to remember when you extend membership rights.

(There is a long discussion on Associate Members in the archives from  a recent 
discussion so I haven't weighed in on this one.)

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC

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