Structure Group Report 2011-06-29

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This report covers messages numbers 8720 to 9002 inclusive

Review Adjudication Procedures

Task 51 Priority 1
This document has passed the proofreaders and is awaiting a volunteer poll.

Revised Reps - Ending Term of Office Procedures

Task 29 (Reopened) This document has passed the proofreaders and is awaiting a volunteer poll.

Elected Role vacancy

Task 55 Priority 3
This proposed procedure was submitted to a Volunteer poll with the following result:

“If a vacancy for any elected post (Rep, Ombudsman, Returning Officer etc.) occurs within 3 months of election, the role vacancy should be offered to the next highest voted candidate, provided they gained at least 75% of the votes of the lowest successful candidate in the most recent election. Elections from now on will state that this auto-promotion will be in effect and that there will be a option to vote for 'none or no others'.

Q: Do you want Freegle to adopt this procedure?

Yes - adopt this procedure - 106 Votes - 90.60% No - do not adopt this procedure - 9 Votes - 7.69% Abstain - 2 votes - 1.71%

Based on this result, the procedure has been adopted.

Ombudsman and Returning Officer Remit/Role etc

Task 60 Priority 1 (was priority 4)

The vast majority of the business on Structure this past month has concerned this document. The discussion has frequently been heated, and we have seen a number of strong positions being taken on some issues which has prolonged debate very considerably, and stopped work on other areas.

The discussion about the frequency of elections in general and strategies for managing them to avoid excessive numbers of volunteer polls continued from last month.

There was considerable discussion about the way Yahoo polls should be used so that a definite majority for a given choice resulted. A number of proposals were made, resulting in a strategy involving multiple simultaneous polls being used to determine the length of office. One vocal objection was received to this strategy after the polls were opened. The group accepted that the poll results could potentially be flawed, but did not feel that the risk of this was enough to abandon them. The results of these polls were that the terms of office for both Ombudsman and Returning Officer should be either two or three years. The poll results were sufficiently close that neither could be regarded as definitive, especially given the earlier objection.

Further discussion resulted, and a consensus arose that both posts should run for the same period. A number of members advised that they would be withdrawing from the discussion as it was becoming too trivial, but nevertheless, another single final poll was run to determine whether two or three years terms should be used for both posts.

27 participants voted and three years won by a single vote. A strong objection was made that the majority was insufficient, and the question should be passed on to a full volunteer poll. The group was opposed to this course of action so a further poll was held to determine if the document was ready to be presented to Central. This gained over 90% support, so the document was passed to Central with a covering note declaring the low margin for the three year term.

There was no further new support for the three year term so the document has now been returned to Structure for preparation for polling. The specific format of the question for presenting it to a volunteer poll is now being discussed. Document:

Ombudsman and Returning Officer ending terms of office

Task 60 Priority 1 (was priority 4)

This document has been drafted based on the existing Reps document with no major objection. It has been submitted to Central with no objection, and is now awaiting preparation for volunteer poll. The format of the poll question is currently being discussed. Document:


Task 61 Priority 1
This document was submitted to a Volunteer poll with the following result:

Do you approve the Freegle Constitution?

Yes - approve the Freegle constitution - 109 votes - 93.16% No - do not approve the Freegle constitution - 2 votes - 1.71% Abstain - 6 votes - 5.13%

Based on this result, the Constitution has been adopted. Document:

Future election polls

Because of the time taken by task 60, discussion on this topic has lapsed.

Ombudsman's role as local group mediator

Task 68, Priority undecided – new task.
Discussion on this topic has not commenced.

Attracting panel pool members for mediation/appeals

Task 48 Priority 2
There was some discussion about the best way to approach this, but as it has already been agreed that this should be one of the Ombudsman's responsibilities, it was decided to pass the task back to the Ombudsman team instead of being prescriptive, but with a caveat that the task could be brought back if they decided a more formal structure was required.

Membership & Purpose of CentralandCafeMods Group

There was a brief and inconclusive discussion about this. The final post was that there doesn't seem to be a clear need for this, but this has not been followed up. It has been suggested that the administrative tasks formerly managed by this group could be transferred to the Central Mods Group without loss of continuity, as this is very close to the current position already.

Financial Management and Controls

Now that the Constitution is in place, the Reps have been reviewing the steps necessary to open a bank account and have discovered previously unnoticed internal inconsistencies in the Financial management document:

They have proposed an appropriate way of resolving the internal conflicts, and this is now being debated.

The remit, role and appointment of an Auditor is also being presently discussed.

Task List

Our Task List can be viewed at

If any of the above topics interest you, or if you have proposals about the structure of Freegle to suggest, please do join our group.

The Coordinator for this group is Jacky (Great Yarmouth) Deputy Coordinator is Peter Johnson (Hunts) and Secretary is Wendy (Woodley) Owners are Jacky, Peter and Wendy.

Back to Freegle Structure or Structure Group Report 2011-05-29, or forwards to Structure Group Report 2011-07-31