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House Manual

Meetings

House Meetings

House meetings are Sundays @ 7pm in the Commons (Apt. 106) [HM 1-18-15].

Members may post agenda items on either the meeting's agenda page on the wiki or in writing on the corkboard in the commons. Members must post agenda items by Friday at noon. The Steward will update the meeting's wiki agenda with any items posted in writing, and post a printed copy on the commons door by Saturday at noon. Items not posted on both agendas will not be presented at house meeting [HM 8-24-14][HM 1-18-15].

Except in instances of a membership review, house meetings will be conducted via consensus process [HM 7-13-14].

Meetings should start with a round of meet and greets, and follow membership acceptance policies for any new potential members [HM 1-18-15].

​ At the beginning of house meeting the minutes taker is responsible for reading the highlights of the previous meeting notes in order to ensure the accuracy of the notes. The minutes will then be accepted by consensus​ [HM 5-17-15].

​Any changes to the wiki must be ratified by the house at the beginning of house meeting [HM 3-15-15].​

Meetings are time-boxed to 2 hours, with 15 minute extensions allowed via a straw poll. Meeting facilitators may rearrange the order of agenda items to ensure the meeting runs efficiently. If there are agenda items that can not be addressed due to the time-box, they must be added to the next meeting's agenda if they are not withdrawn by the proposer [HM 7-6-14].

Once an item has been consented to, it cannot be revisited in the same agenda except as new business, where it cannot be changed. The only way to change an item that has been consented to is to add it to a future agenda [HM 12-21-14].

Non-members may not be present during any agenda items concerning contract breaks or membership reviews unless they are required for the proceedings. The house may grant a specific exemption for a non-member to be present during a meeting via consensus. [HM 2-15-15]

Committee Meetings

An officer may call for a committee meeting to decide on items under their purview. The house must be given 48 hours notice detailing the item(s) up for discussion and when the meeting will take place. During these 48 hours, members may request an item be brought to a house meeting instead, in this event a decision can not be made at the committee meeting on the specified item(s).

Proposals for expenses more than $250 require a house meeting. This covers all expenses where there is not already established policy [HM 7-27-14].


​Membership

Membership Acceptance Policy

In order to be accepted as a potential member, prospective members must attend two meetings. Former members must also attend two meetings and go through the acceptance process again. The purpose of the two meeting requirement is for the prospective members to get to know the house and vice versa. If someone can’t attend in person, they can attend the meeting by phone. At each meeting, the meeting chair should ask the prospective member if they have any pets – because their pets must also be accepted by the house.

Prospective members must re-apply if they were accepted 6 months or more previously. In the case that they have to re-apply, they will be given a new spot on the waiting list based on their most recent second meeting [HM 1-10-13] [HM 1-10-16].

The Second Meeting

At the second meeting, all non-members will then be asked to leave the room, and the Meeting Chair will ask, “Does anyone have any compelling evidence of why 'Fred' could be evicted from the house?“

Examples:

  • non-payment of rent
  • abusive behavior
  • disrupting the right of quiet enjoyment
  • instilling fear in others
  • any other evictable behavior

Evidence includes personal testimony or any other reason one might have. If no one does, then “Fred” is accepted as a potential member. He can then sign a contract.

If someone does bring up compelling evidence of why “Fred” could be evicted, then the meeting will discuss it. The Membership Coordinator will discreetly inform the prospective member that we are discussing their application; they will be asked to leave and told that we will inform them of our decision as soon as possible. Other non-members will also be asked to leave, after being informed of their acceptance status, so that members can have a private discussion.

Members can state an objection to the evidence, if the evidence does not seem to be a valid reason that someone could be evicted from the house. If no one objects to the evidence which has been brought up, then the meeting will vote on “Fred's” membership.

In a member acceptance vote, two people can block a member's acceptance. No quorum is required. If he is not accepted, he cannot sign a contract, and he cannot become a member.

If someone does object to the evidence presented by stating that it is not a valid reason that “Fred” could be evicted from the house, then the meeting will vote on whether the evidence is valid. A simple majority vote (more than 50%) is required to accept the evidence as valid. If the evidence is accepted as valid, a vote on “Fred's” membership will take place (which, as described above, can be blocked by two members). If the evidence is not accepted as valid, the vote on “Fred's” membership will not occur, and “Fred” will be accepted as a potential member. People who are accepted as members will be put on the Prospective Members Waiting List. When a room is available, all of the members of the house (who can switch rooms if they want) and all people on the waiting list will be alerted. If more than one person is interested in a room, who gets the room needs to be determined [HM 1-10-13].

Member Acceptance Flow Chart

Here's an attempt to simplify the above policy in a flow chart:

  1. The Meeting Chair asks, “Does anyone have any compelling evidence of why “Fred” could be evicted from the house?”
    1. No one presents any compelling evidence. “Fred” is accepted.
    2. Someone presents compelling evidence. Go to 2.
  2. The Meeting Chair will ask if anyone objects to the evidence which has been presented.
    1. No one objects to the evidence that has been presented. Go to 4.
    2. Someone objects to the evidence that has been presented. Go to 3.
  3. The meeting will vote on whether the evidence is valid.
    1. More than 50% vote that the evidence is valid. Go to 4.
    2. 50% or less vote that the evidence is valid. “Fred” is accepted.
  4. A vote is taken on whether to accept Fred as a member.
    1. Less than two people vote to block “Fred's” acceptance. “Fred” is accepted.
    2. Two or more people vote to block “Fred's” acceptance. “Fred” is not accepted.

[HM 1-10-13]

Additional Meetings

At any point in the process, a simple majority vote (more than 50%) can require additional membership meetings to further discuss the member's potential acceptance. Quorum is not required. This can be used in complicated cases, or in situations where more evidence needs to be gathered or additional persons need to be at the meeting to give their points of view [HM 1-10-13].

Referrals and assistance from a partner organization

Prospective members receiving assistance via a partner organization shall have the requirement to attend two meetings waived, provided that they instead take a tour of the coop as part of a site visit.

The Membership Coordinator shall encourage the prospective's case worker to attend a House meeting prior to the site visit, however such attendance is not required for acceptance by the House.

The Membership Coordinator shall give 48 hour notice to the house of persons coming to the coop for a site visit.

Site visits shall be conducted by the Membership Coordinator or a person delegated by either the Membership Coordinator or the House. The person conducting the site visit shall explain what the coop is, how it works, the penalties for failing to perform coop duties and follow the House rules, and that such penalties may include the non-renewal of their lease or eviction.

After coming to a site visit the House will approve or deny membership by conducting 2nd meeting procedures for the prospective at the next available House Meeting. The prospective member shall not be required to attend this meeting, but may do so if they so choose [HM 10-18-15].

Partner organization prospectives will be given highest priority when a unit becomes available [HM 12-6-15].

[HM 10-11-15]

Member Admission Priority Policy

The ultimate goal and the bottom line is to make sure there are no gaps in occupancy. Our budget relies on having every room full all the time.

The person on the waiting list who was accepted earliest has priority for being offered the room/unit. However, among the accepted prospective members who respond, the person who can immediately move-in without a gap of unpaid for days, is able to immediately pay the full deposit and membership fees, and can pay rent on or before their date of move-in is the person given priority for actual move-in. Partner Organization prospectives, a current resident moving from another room/unit, associates that are not behind on labor, or general prospective members are on the waitlist, in that order, assuming for the latter three that they can also pay the full deposit, fees, and first month's rent before the move-in date [HM 8-18-13].

Associate members who have not performed their labor are ineligible for rental contracts until such a time when they have done enough make up labor for their missed hours. Paying labor fines does not make up for this. [HM 8-24-14]

The general order of the waitlist is as follows:

  1. ​Current members residing at the coop in order of request to move.
  2. Associate members who are not behind on labor, in order of acceptance.
  3. General prospective members, in order of acceptance.

[HM 1-18-15][HM 1-25-15] [HM 10-11-15] [HM 12-6-15]

Unless otherwise excepted, the House may not sign a residential lease for a person to solely occupy a unit if such action would reduce the number of members residing at the House to a quantity fewer than 32. Exemptions shall be provided if a person receives assistance via a partner organization, has legal dependents, is pregnant, or is in the process of adopting a child [HM 10-11-15].

In the case that the person given priority for move-in is requesting an entire unit, the Membership Coordinator will facilitate their move-in and the signing of a lease as such. Leases should be signed 30 days before the unit is due to come open.

In the case that the person given priority for move-in is requesting a single room, the Membership Coordinator will spend a reasonable amount of time seeking to find them a roommate, with the expectation of having a lease signed for the room by all occupants at least 30 days prior to its opening. The secondary roommate must also be an accepted prospective member. Similar prioritization guidelines will be taken into account as for the person given primary priority.

Considerations for prioritizing roommate applicants:

  • a) Does the primary accepted roommate have pet allergies that the secondary roommate's pets might irritate?
  • b) Does the primary accepted roommate have pets that are territorial or otherwise incompatible with a secondary roommate's pets?
  • c) Does the primary roommate have other reasonable objections to a proposed roommate? The Membership Coordinator may determine if an objection is reasonable or not.

If 5 weeks before the room is scheduled to open no acceptable roommate can be found from the pool of accepted prospective members, the Membership Coordinator will instead seek to fill the room with an applicant requesting an entire unit OR an alternate set of roommates [HM 8-18-13].

Contract Break Policy

A contract break is a release of the member from their lease.

Contract breaks should be requested at least 6 weeks in advance of the requested date of termination.

A contract break can be granted by the Membership Coordinator, by a 75% affirmative vote at a house meeting, or as a last resort by the Board. A Membership Coordinator’s decision to grant a contract break can be overturned by a simple 50% majority of a house vote. The Membership Coordinator must inform the house via e-mail that they plan to grant a member a contract break within three days of deciding this with a member.

Members who move out before the end of their contract are contractually liable for the vacancy caused by their leaving early until the room is filled or the end of their contract period; whichever comes first. The Membership Coordinator is expected to prioritize filling this room in order to minimize financial impact on the member breaking contract. If the room cannot be filled, however, the member breaking the contract will remain financially liable.

The contract is not tied to a specific room or unit. Section 10 of the Contract gives CHEA the right to reassign members to different rooms at any time. Even if another member swaps to the room or unit of a member who moved out before their contract end date, the member who moved out early still owes money and is still under contract to pay for the vacancy caused by their termination.

Money earned from temporary hostelers, who stay in the room of the member who moved out before the end of their contract, will be counted towards the money owed by that member, to pay off that member's balance. The house is under no obligation to find a hosteler for the room.

Members who are granted a contract break will be charged a $100 contract break fee.

The Membership Coordinator is obligated to grant contract breaks that are due to draft by military, medical causes with note from a doctor (MD), or domestic violence [HM 8-4-13].

Member Review Policy

A membership review is a public review at a house meeting of a member's actions or behavior. A membership review can result in a vote to evict a member from the house, can result in the house requesting a behavioral contract of the member, or in no action being taken at all.

It is the expectation of the cooperative that members will first address conflict with each other through other courses such as dialogue or conflict mediation.

Any three members of the house may call a membership review of any member. A membership review is called by writing it on the meeting agenda and publicly posting the reasons for the review by Friday at noon before the meeting. The Meeting Chair will ensure that the meeting discussion adheres to the publicly posted reasons for the review. The Steward will ensure that house policies regarding eviction meetings are followed if necessary and will inform the membership and the member being reviewed of all relevant policies .

The member being reviewed has a right to address fully all of the reasons for the review .

After discussing all of the reasons for the review, the Chair will ask the member being reviewed to leave the room while the meeting discusses whether to call for a vote to remove them from the house or ask for a behavioral contract, the nonfulfillment of which will result in removal (see below.) While the member is out of the room, no new issues should be brought up. If any new issues are brought up, then the member will be called back into the room and given the chance to address those issues.

The Chair will first ask for a straw poll to determine which option the majority of members are interested in: eviction, behavioral contract, or no action. The action receiving a plurality of votes will be discussed first. A single member may call for a vote to initiate the action. An eviction requires an affirmative vote by 3/4 of the members present, except in the case of a member having broken a behavioral contract, in which case a simple majority is required. Other kinds of actions require a simple majority to pass.

In the case of a vote for eviction, the vote will take place while the member is out of the room. The member being reviewed can come back into vote before leaving the room again.

The vote will be a secret vote, tallied by the Meeting Chair and the Steward. The vote can be taken on paper ballots, prepared by the Meeting Chair.

In the case of a behavioral contract, discussion of the terms can take place with and/or without the member being reviewed present. A behavioral contract may contain more than one required behavior. Each condition must be voted on separately and must be worded in terms of specific, observable behavior. If the meeting votes to allow the member continued membership under a behavioral contract, the Steward is in charge of drafting such a contract which should be brought for approval to the next house meeting.

The member being reviewed does not have to be in attendance at the meeting to be evicted from the house or to have their membership revoked. The member being reviewed may write a response, which will be presented at the meeting, if they are unable/unwilling to attend the meeting.

If the meeting votes to remove the member from the house, then the member's membership will be revoked and eviction proceedings will begin.

If a member believes that the member under behavioral contract has violated this contract at any point during its duration, they can bring it to a house meeting as such. There is no need to go through the membership review procedure again at this point. The membership will simply discuss and vote on whether the member breached their contract. An affirmative vote of a simple majority will result in eviction [HM 10-6-13].

[HM 6-21-15] [HM 12-6-15]

Associate Membership Program

Associate members must go through the standard membership acceptance process, and may be denied membership only for the reasons outlined as acceptable for denial of prospective resident members. Unlike resident members, associate members may contract for membership on a month-to-month basis.

Associate members may not spend the night in common areas except under extenuating circumstances, such as sickness or inclement weather. They may not store items in common areas without approval of the house. Otherwise, associate members have the rights of resident members except where outlined below [HM 5-19-13].

Associate members are obligated to do one hour of labor a week. These members have access to the courtyard, garden space, grounds, can run for coordinator positions, and are entitled to full participation at all meetings including a vote. [HM 8-2-15] [HM 1-10-16] [HM 1-24-16] [HM 5-19-13][HM 3-23-14]

On the 21st of the month, Associates with an outstanding balance of over $100 shall have their Associate Membership Contract terminated [HM 8-2-15].

Visitors

Guests of members who wish to stay on the property for longer than 14 days must obtain house approval [HM 7-28-13].

End of Contract

If, 6 weeks before their contract ends, a member will not guarantee that they will renew their contract, the Membership Coordinator will start advertising that the member's room will open up soon. The member can renew their contract at any time then, but if someone signs a contract for the room before they do, then they must either move out or, if other rooms are available, switch rooms. If the member's contract is not renewed a month before the end of the contract period, the Membership Coordinator will advertise their room and let someone else sign for their room (after first giving them a chance) [HM 6-23-13].

If at the end of a member's contract they have not re-signed a contract their membership will be revoked and a 30 day notice to vacate will be given [HM 3-8-15].

Membership coordinators shall not be permitted to sign their own lease as an agent of the House. For this instance, such duty shall be carried out by any current House officers or members of the CHEA Board, provided that they do not reside in the same unit as the Membership Coordinator [HM 9-27-15].

​Members that have started a payment plan within the last 2 months of their contract are only eligible for a 3 month renewal. If a member becomes delinquent on the payment plan they may not sign another contract or payment plan without house approval [HM 8-17-14].

Any member who leaves the co-op not in good standing cannot sign a new contract until they have returned to good standing [HM 8-2-15].

Reporting

The Membership Coordinator will notify the house by email via the house mailing list within 5 business days when membership is newly granted or revoked [HM 3-15-15].


Finance

Rent and Deposit

Rent shall be $880 per apartment, or $440 per room. The deposit for moving in is equivalent to one month's rent [HM 1-18-15] [HM 2-1-15].

If a couple wishes to share a room, they will pay 2/3 of the cost of the apartment, inclusive of any member fees charged to the second person [HM 6-29-14].

[HM 5-19-13][HM 3-23-14] [HM 1-10-16]

Due Dates, Late Fees, and Financial Standing

  • Dues are to be deposited on or before the 7th of the month, or they are considered late.
  • If a member's dues are late and more than $100 is owed, they will incur a $10 fine on top of their dues [HM 3-6-16].
  • If after the 15th of the month a member still owes more than $100, the will incur a second $10 fine on top of their dues [CHEA Contract] [HM 3-6-16].
  • Late fees accrued on any unpaid debts while a member is in a hospital, including a psychiatric hospital, shall be waived [HM 10-4-15].

[HM 4-21-13]

If, on the 16th day of a month, a member is overdue on an amount of at least $100, the member has fallen out of good standing with the coop and is considered “Not in Good Standing” (NGS). In order for the NGS member to return to good standing, he or she must contact the Bookkeeper and reach an agreement on a payment plan. The Bookkeeper may also reach out to NGS members to assist them in returning to good standing.

If, by the 21st day of the month, a payment plan agreement is printed and signed by the NGS member, or the amount due plus any late fees have been paid in full, the member returns to good standing. Otherwise, the member is to be given a notice to vacate. A member who has violated the terms of a payment plan agreement is also no longer in good standing and is to be given a notice to vacate. The Bookkeeper must post the notice to vacate and also announce its occurrence on the official coop mailing list by the end of the 21st day of the month.

An notice to vacate given to an NGS member for financial reasons may be rescinded by one of the following means, before the time limit to vacate (as written on the notice) has expired:

  • The NGS member pays the overdue amount in full, including any late fees.
  • The NGS member becomes current for the month on a payment plan agreement that was signed before the notice to vacate was posted, meeting all terms found in the agreement.
  • The NGS member brings an agenda item to a Sunday house meeting proposing the rescission of the notice to vacate and (if applicable) alternative payment plan, and the proposal is accepted.

[HM 9-14-14]

On the 21st of the month, Associates with an outstanding balance of over $100 shall have their Associate Membership Contract terminated.

Any member who leaves the co-op not in good standing cannot sign a new contract until they have returned to good standing [HM 8-2-15].

Payment Plans

Payment plans may be offered to or requested by residents with outstanding balances as a means to pay off their debt over a period of time and avoid potential eviction. Such agreements must be signed by both the resident, and the Bookkeeper, Treasurer, or Steward on behalf of the house.

  • Debts covered by a payment plan shall not accrue any new late fees.
  • Scheduled payments made as part of an ongoing payment plan are in addition to the resident's monthly rent.
  • Residents are expected to make payments in full and by the exact date as outlined in the signed payment plan. Failure to do so shall be considered a violation of the payment plan agreement and a notice to vacate shall be issued.

Officers shall not be permitted to authorize, without house approval, a payment plan:

  1. For any person already on a payment plan.
  2. If the payment plan would extend past the end date of a resident's lease.

[HM 11-15-15]

Turning in Receipts

When you purchase something for the coop write the following on the receipt before turning it in to the rent/receipt box in the commons:

  • Your Name/Initials
  • One of the following categories:
    • Food
    • Kitchen Supplies
    • Maintenance
    • Tech
    • Office
    • Legal
    • Utilities
    • Grounds
    • Outreach
  • Check number (if applicable)

If one receipt has two categories, write the breakdown on the receipt for each category.

This policy is to be on display above the rent/receipt box in the commons.

[HM 3-15-15] [HM 3-22-15]

Reporting

By the final day of each month, the treasurer and bookkeeper must publish the following statistics on the mailing list and in the commons:

  • The names of residents delinquent on rent or delinquent on payment plans.
  • The date said resident's account was last in good standing, where “good standing” is defined as no amount being due while taking payment plans into account.
  • Total number of members on a payment plan.

Anyone current on their payment plan will not have their name listed.

Records of this data shall be retained, and shall be made available to members on request [HM 7-27-14].

Eviction

If the time period of an eviction notice has expired, and the evicted tenant has not vacated, the Steward must announce this occurrence on the official coop mailing list the day of the notice period's expiration. The Steward or another member appointed by the Steward must also file an eviction suit within three business days following expiration of the notice period [HM 9-14-14].


Labor

Definitions:

  1. Labor: Services or tasks performed by individual members of the cooperative for mutual collective benefit.
  2. No-show: a statement by one member that another member does not deserve credit for some specific labor.
  3. Labor trade: when two members agree to perform each others' assignments on a temporary basis.
  4. Labor sale: when one member compensates another to do their labor for them by a means other than a trade, that member is said to be “buying” labor while the other member is said to be “selling” it.

All residents of La Reunion cooperative are expected to perform four hours of labor per week, the nature of which is negotiated with the Labor Czar(s). The kinds of labor to be performed as well as the required amount of labor to be performed by members is at the discretion of the Labor Czar(s).

A member may be temporarily excused from labor obligations for a given week as long as that member gives the Labor Czar(s) advance notice; the member is still responsible for making up the obligation in a timely fashion. If a member fails to perform a given labor assignment, or performs the assignment inadequately, the member may be liable for a fine or increased labor obligations to compensate the house [HM 5-12-13].

A list of common labor positions and what is to be expected of them can be found here.

Labor Accommodations and Credits

Members with disabilities must be accommodated when given labor assignments. Where appropriate and at the discretion of the labor czar, reasonable adjustments should be made to predefined labor tasks. An accommodation in the form of a labor credit may be granted but must be approved by the house. If an accommodation-related decision is challenged by another member, it should be brought to a house meeting for review [HM 1-18-15].

Penalties (including but not limited to no-shows and labor fines) from any labor hours missed while a member is in a hospital, including a psychiatric hospital, shall be waived [HM 9-27-15].

No-shows

A member may issue a no-show to another member for not performing an assigned task or for performing it inadequately. A no-show must be communicated to the Labor Czar(s) and it is the Labor Czar's responsibility to ensure the house is informed.

If the defendant disputes the no-show, they may discuss this with the Czar(s) who will then decide the validity of the no-show.

If any member disputes a no-show, they may bring it to a house meeting with a motion to annul the no-show with a majority vote [HM 5-12-13].

If a blind member is not notified electronically within one week of the no-show being posted, then it is not a valid no-show. [HM 2-22-15]

If a member receives 8 or more no-shows in a month, 12 in two months, or 15 in three months, an automatic membership review of that member will be placed on the upcoming agenda by the Steward or another coordinator. This does not include no-shows that have been successfully disputed and recalled, or resolved within 30 days from reporting via make up labor (aka before it becomes a labor fine). Payment of labor fines does not resolve the no-show for the purposes of this procedure. [HM 3-1-15]

Make-up Labor

From the first day of the month to the last day of the month all labor is tracked and labor czars have until the 15th of the following (second) month to determine and inform the house of no-shows.

Members behind on labor are encouraged to talk to the labor czars about getting on a “labor plan” to resolve their outstanding labor debts.

If labor hours are not made up within 30 days from notification of a no-show the hours will convert to fines to be paid with the next month's rent. This does not apply to members on active labor plans that are in good standing [HM 11-23-14].

Labor credit received in exchange for in-kind donations to the cooperative is limited to three (3) hours monthly. [HM 08-28-16]

Surplus Labor Hours and Vacations

Banked surplus labor hours will be capped to 16 hours for a member. [HM 3-1-15]

Members shall be allotted 8 vacation hours per calendar year. [HM 1-1-17] Members may spend vacation hours to be released from their regular labor responsibilities. Members are not required to use vacation hours consecutively.

To use vacation hours a Member must give at least one week's advance notice to the labor czar of the date(s) and labor(s) they want to have covered by available vacation hours [HM 12-13-15].

Fines and Rebates

If a member receives one or more no-shows then a fine will be added to the members' dues for the next month. Members are still liable for labor fines received even if they move out.

When assessing fines or rebates, each hour of labor will be worth $10.

A member may earn dues rebates by performing extra labor; earning a rebate for “sold” labor is not allowed. Extra labor tasks proposed for a rebate must be approved by the Labor Czar(s) in advance, or accepted by a majority vote at a house meeting. A member may not earn more than $200 of rebates in a given month [HM 5-12-13].

Labor Trades and Sales

If two members trade labor they will not be liable for their usual assignments but instead for the labor they received in the trade provided they give advance notice to the Labor Czar(s).

If a member (Purchaser) “buys” labor from another member (Seller), the Purchaser is still liable for the labor and may receive a no-show if the labor is not performed adequately. A member can only “buy” an amount of labor equal to that which they are assigned by the labor czar(s).

The terms of a labor sale are solely the discretion of the two parties involved. Applicable city, state, and federal laws may apply [HM 5-12-13].

Reporting

By the 15th of each month, the labor czars must publish the following statistics on the email list and in the commons:

  • New no-shows earned during the past month, broken down by person.
  • Total cumulative no-shows per person.
  • No-shows made up during the previous month, broken down by person, including those made up by paying off fines.

Records of this data shall be retained, and shall be made available to members on request [HM 7-27-14].

Labor Plan Policy

To enact a Labor Plan, the co-oper seeking the Labor Plan must meet with the Labor Czar to discuss and sign a Labor Plan agreement.

Labor Plan:

  1. 1-3 months to make-up no-shows
  2. no more than 5 no-shows of regularly scheduled labor a month while on Labor Plan
  3. can only be on one labor plan at a time

Co-opers on a Labor Plan must check-in biweekly with the Labor Czar, this serves as a way to communicate labor needs and ensure Labor Plan is being followed. If Co-oper doesn't fulfill labor plan and is at or over the “automatic member review amount of no-shows” then a “member review” is triggered, unless illness or emergencies.


Officer Positions

Officers are elected labor positions used to oversee and/or manage different aspects of the coop. A list of the current officer positions and what is expected of each can be found here.

Officers must conduct all house business on House provided email and other accounts that will be passed on to future holders of office [HM 7-26-15].

Officers are required to sign their emails with their name when using an officer account [HM 7-26-15].

Terms and Elections

Elected officer terms last for six months, except board representatives, who serve 1 year terms [HM 2-2-14]. Regular elections take place every December and June, with the new term beginning in, respectively, early January and July. Elections shall be organized by the current term's steward [HM 12-1-13] [HM 12-13-15].

Nomination and voting time periods of regular or special elections may be accelerated via consensus at a house or committee meeting, as long as clear notice is given.

For the purposes of elections, clear notice to the house involves both email and notices posted to doors, with reasonable accommodations as necessary. Nomination and voting periods, along with where members may turn in their ballots, must be specified when elections begin.

Nominations

Elections begin with a nomination period. Nomination sheets shall be posted in the commons for all electable positions. Anyone may nominate any member for a position. Nominations must be signed by the member nominated for the member to be considered a valid nominee for that position.

A nomination may be shared by two people, who must both accept it to be considered a valid nominee, and shall share the position if they win. A shared nomination is otherwise considered a single nominee in voting process rules.

Nomination sheets shall be up for at least a week. The end of the nomination period must be clearly notified to the house.

Voting

After nominations, there shall be a voting period for all positions with at least one valid nominee.

Ballots must include both a space for write-in nominees and a no-confidence option for each position. A write-in is a vote cast by writing on the ballot the name of a member who would otherwise not be a valid nominee for that position.

Ballots shall be distributed to all members, with reasonable accommodations made for members with disabilities. Completed ballots must be either turned into the specified location in the commons or directly given to those organizing the current election. Only one ballot per person can be given. If a member cannot be reached then posting their ballot inside their unit is acceptable.

The time from the final ballot being distributed to the ballot turn-in deadline shall be at least a week. The ballot turn-in deadline must be clearly notified to the house.

Results

Unless votes of no-confidence equal or surpass votes for the nominee, the nominee with the most votes shall be declared the victor. In the event of a tie, the winners may agree to share the position, or one may concede and allow the other to win. If neither of these occur a special election shall be triggered.

Results must be announced by email and posted to the commons door no more than 24 hours after the ballot turn-in deadline. Results are the victor’s names for each position. All vote totals must be available on request.

Special Elections

Special elections for positions are triggered:

  • If a nomination period passes without a nomination for the position.
  • If votes of no-confidence equal or surpass the most votes for a nominee.
  • In the event of a winning tie where one or both nominees do not wish to share the position, and neither concedes.
  • In the event of a winning tie with more than two tied nominees.
  • If a write-in nominee has the most votes, but refuses to accept the position within 72 hours of results being posted.
  • If the single holder of a position vacates with more than a week left in their term; that is, if they resign, depart, or are removed as the result of an officer review.

If less than a week remains in the term when a position is vacated, no special election is called. If a shared position is vacated by one holder of the position, the position will continue to be filled by the other holder of the position, and no special election is called.

Special elections are similar to regular elections, with nomination and voting periods. During special elections nomination and voting periods may be as short as 3 days each, as long as the house is notified [HM 12-6-15].

Positions filled via a special election will still maintain their original end-of-term date, and shall be open for nominations at the next regular election [HM 7-5-15].

Reports

Officers are expected to provide the house with a monthly report at house meeting [HM 2-23-14].

Officer Review Policy

An Officer Review is a public review of an elected house officer's performance at a house meeting. An Officer Review can result in a vote to remove the Officer from their position. The house cannot end an officer's term prematurely by any means other than an Officer Review.

Any three (3) members of the house may call an Officer Review of any officer by publicly posting the reasons for the review by Friday at noon before the meeting.

The Officer being reviewed has a right to fully address all of the reasons for the review.

The Officer does not have to be in attendance at the meeting to be removed from office. The Officer being reviewed may write a response, which will be presented at the meeting, if they are unable or unwilling to attend the meeting.

After discussing all of the reasons for the review, the Chair will ask the Officer in question to leave the room while the meeting decides whether to call for a vote to remove them from office. While the Officer is out of the room, no new issues will be brought up. If any new issues are brought up, then the Officer will be called back into the room and given the chance to address those issues.

The vote will take place while the Officer is out of the room.

The vote will be a secret, written vote, tallied by the Meeting Chair and the Steward. The vote can be taken on paper ballots, prepared by the Meeting Chair.

If 3/4 of the members present vote to remove the Officer from office, then that person will be removed from the position for the remainder of their term.

In the case of an affirmative vote to remove an Officer from office, members present at the meeting can discuss and select someone to take over that officer's duties until a special election can be organized.

[HM 3-1-15]


Misc. House Policy

Access to security camera footage

The security video captured by our cameras belongs to the house as a whole and not to any one individual or officer. The viewing of the security video can be requested by the house or by any member. The security officer is responsible for facilitating access to the video. To provide a safeguard against misuse of the video, two members (one of which may be the security officer) must be initially present for video to be reviewed or copied [HM 3-23-14].

Sleeping in the commons (Apt 106)

Non-members and Associate members may not spend the night in common areas except under extenuating circumstances, such as sickness or inclement weather. [HM 2-16-14][HM 5-19-13]

Smoking in the commons (Apt 106)

Smoking of anything that can produce gas, including e-cigarettes is not permitted. Does not include personal rooms if the door is closed [HM 1-26-14].

Quiet hours

Members are expected to maintain a reasonable level of quietness during the defined hours. An acceptable guideline is that no member should be able to hear another member or their actions while inside their unit.

Quiet hours are as follows

  • Sunday: 11pm - 7am
  • Monday: 11pm - 7am
  • Tuesday: 11pm - 7am
  • Wednesday: 11pm - 7am
  • Thursday: 11pm - 7am
  • Friday: 1am - 8am
  • Saturday: 1am - 8am

[HM 10-12-14]

Yellow Card System

Yellow Cards are to be used as an accountability system and record of behavior that is detrimental to the health of our community.

A yellow card consists of a member writing a short, specific description of problematic behavior that they attribute to a specific member or members. One additional member needs to also sign the yellow card for it to be accepted. It should then be submitted to the Yellow Card envelope in the Commons.

Examples of yellow card-able behavior include but are not limited to:

  • leaving messes in Common areas
  • taking unfair amounts of common resources
  • damaging common property
  • being excessively loud
  • treating other members in a disrespectful, threatening, or abusive manner

At least two members need to legibly sign off on a yellow card. Yellow cards can only be submitted after communicating concern to the member being yellow-carded and asking them to amend the behavior. This can be done through an intermediary if necessary. If doing so is not possible, the reason should be noted on the yellow card. Each separate instance of behavior is only eligible for one yellow card. If a member believes they were given a yellow card unfairly they can appeal the yellow card at a house meeting.

The Steward will check (or coordinate with another coordinator to check) the envelope on a weekly basis. They will inform a member that they have been yellow-carded within a week of seeing the yellow card, along with the Treasurer and Labor Czar. They must report this or arrange to have it reported to the House via a meeting.

Four yellow cards in a month, six in two months, or eight in six months triggers an automatic membership review. Three signatures are not required to go forward with the membership review [HM 10-12-14].

[HM 6-21-15] [HM 12-6-15] [HM 12-13-15]

Food Labeling for Co-Op Dinners

Dinner cooks must label their dishes with the following information:

  1. Their names
  2. Any information relevant to member dietary restrictions. The following abbreviations are acceptable:
    1. M (Meat-based dish)
    2. VGT (Vegetarian dish)
    3. VGN (Vegan dish)
    4. GF (Gluten-free dish)
    5. DF (Dairy-free dish)
  3. Any ingredients which appear on the list of food allergens, which is maintained by the Kitchen Manager, must also be specifically listed.

[HM 2-15-15], [HM 7-24-16]

Severe Food Allergens

Foods listed on the severe food allergen list maintained by the Kitchen Manager may not be stored, prepared, or served in the Commons unless it is cleared with the person who has the allergy beforehand.

[HM 2-15-15]

Changes to the wiki

Any changes made to the wiki regarding the documentation of house policy must be ratified by the house at the beginning of house meeting after meet and greet [HM 3-15-15].

The Wiki Maintainer will be responsible for ensuring the wiki is updated with changes to house policy [HM 3-15-15].

Composting Rules

All composting containers on the property must be securely covered and emptied in the composting pit daily [HM 8-2-15].


documents/manual.txt · Last modified: 2017/06/28 18:06 (external edit)