2020 AGM

MINUTES of the Fair Vote Canada Waterloo Region Chapter Annual General Meeting

Date
25 June 2020 at 7:00pm
Location
Held online with Zoom
Present
Cathy Scott, Myron Steinman, Jim Hemphill, Jonathan Cassels, Peter Croves, Peter Kopwitz, Jay Judkowitz, Kristen Wright, Larry Kryski, Jennifer Ross, Aden Seaman, David Dirks, Sharon Sommerville, Dave Arthur, Ellen Papenburg, Jim Sannes, Evan Rosamond.

Introductions

Review minutes from 2019 Annual General Meeting

Report from Co-Chairs and Chapter Co-ordinator

Co-Chair Report by Sharon Sommerville

  • Glad we’re all here, coping, and surviving.
  • PR has taken a back seat to events (Covid and Trump)
  • Began to meet at the Civic Hub, after years of work including Fair Vote Waterloo. Happy to have been part of that. Has enormous potential for grassroots organizations like ours.
  • Although PR is not top of mind, we continue to see the need.
    • Highlighted in an article by Luisa D’Amato, “a group that continues to work”, and awarded a bunch of tulips

Chapter Coordinator Report by Cathy Scott

  • Attended some summer festivals last year, not as many people as previous years.
  • Got signatures on petition for Citizens Assembly
  • In the fall we focused on the election, created a third-party (XXXXXget nameXXXX), held a door-hanger campaign.
  • Saw a number of letters to the editor in The Record in favour of PR from people we’ve not heard of, shows broader support for PR.
  • Work from past years is taking root.
  • Last election results illustrate the need for PR
  • Visits to MPs, two to Bardish Chagger (Lib, Waterloo), one to Bryan May (Lib, Cambridge) (concentrating on Citizens Assembly), one to Marwan Tabbara (Lib, Kit-S.Hesp)
  • Sharon and — attended a lecture from Cambridge Mass. about Citizens Assemblies, will re-visit in the fall of 2020.

Treasurer’s Report (Aden Seaman)

  • Summary: We have a positive balance
  • Donations from 2019 AGM for website, domain name registration, VoIP
  • Discount for new memberships from Fair Vote Canada (effectively a donation)
  • Some expenses…
  • “Not much activity”
  • Treasurer’s report is available on request, contact Aden Seaman.

  • Motion to accept Treasurers Report: Jon Cassels; Seconded: Sharon SOmmervile; passed

Other Reports

Outreach Committee (David Dirks)

  • School systems were on rotating strikes, then Covid, so no outreach
  • Outreach has been David and Cathy calling people
  • With no face-to-face meetings outreach needs to be readdressed, what do we want to do in a post-Covid world. To be discussed on the Discussion Mailing List, and at a Discussion Night. Organizational Strategy meeting to be hosted on Zoom before the July Discussion Night. 9 or 16 July 2020, 7:00pm to 8:30pm

Letter Writing Committee (Donald Fraser)

(Don Fraser was not available)

  • Our letter writing is frequent and strong
  • “More is better”
  • Use the examples of women-led countries doing better with COvid, women get elected by PR
  • Activity on Twitter (and other social media?)
  • Hearing a lack of understanding of different system, “We’re not Europe” and even “I have no idea what you’re talking about.”
  • Fair Vote Canada does not prefer a specific system; all its members have a different opinion. FVC is an advocacy organization, and carries no political legitimacy.

Digital Committee (Jonathan Cassels, Jay Judkowitz)

  • Not much activity, will be covered under “Old Business”

Old Business

  • Website migration & other IT issues
    • http://fairvotewrc.ca site has been down, unavailable to the public. We’ve taken donations for the website, but have not used those funds
    • Set a meeting with Aden Seaman, Jon Cassels, Jay Judkovitz, and Bob Jonkman; Aden will organize
    • Scrap the VoIP phone as it exists? Cost $11/month. Motion to cancel existing system, to be addressed by Digital Committee: Jon Cassels; Seconded: Peter Croves; passed.

Election of 2020-2021 Executive

Current Executive

  • Sharon Sommerville: Co-Chair (First year, Two year term)
  • Jim Sannes: Co-Chair (One year term)
  • Aden Seaman: Treasurer (One year term)
  • Bob Jonkman: Secretary (First year, Two year term but not returning for 2nd year)
  • Stuart Chandler: Member-At-Large (One year term)
  • Cathy Scott: Member-At-Large (One year term)

We will be electing four to six members to the Executive:

  • Co-Chair (2 year term)
  • Treasurer (2 year term
  • Secretary (1 year term)
  • Members-At-Large (1 year term, 1 to 3 positions)

You can nominate someone else or yourself. Printed proxy votes will be accepted.

You must be a paid-up Fair Vote Canada member to be nominated or vote; memberships can be renewed by Thursday for $25; first-time memberships are $10.

We will be electing four to six people by Single Transferable Vote for a total of five to seven members on the Executive Board. Once new members have been elected the Board will choose the positions amongst themselves: Co-Chair (two-year term), Treasaurer (two-year term), one to three Members-At-Large (one-year term), and Secretary. This year Secretary will be a one-year term; next year it will be a two-year term position again. Note that the Co-Chair positions must be gender-balanced.

Nominees

  • Peter Croves
  • Aden Seaman
  • Cathy Scott
  • Jim Sannes
  • Myron Steinman

Elected by acclamation

New Business

  • 2020 Summer Festival Season & Covid-19 considerations
    • Multicultural Festival is online this weekend, we can’t organize in time; can’t collect petitions. Going to pass on it.
    • WR Nonviolence Day In The Park on Saturday 26 September 2020, concurrent with Rib Fest in another part of the park. Cathy Scott will register

  • Liberal MP for Kit-S.Hesp may not be fulfilling his mandate, there may be a by-election. What will we do? To be considered. May discuss at the Strategy Meeting in July.

  • Next Discussion meeting will be the last Thursday of July, 30 July 2020.

  • How can we support other Fair Vote Chapters and Action Teams? It is helpful for other areas to be involved in FairvoteWRC meetings.

  • Jim Hemphill has business card sized info cards, let him know if we need more. There has not been much opportunity to use them with Covid restrictions.

  • Quebec has legislation to move PR forward. There is discussion (and opposition) to holding a referendum.

Announcements

  • Jon Cassels has been elected to the Fair Vote Canada National Council executive.

Adjournment of AGM

Adjournment: M: Sharon, S: Jon Cassels.

Time: 8:35pm

Discussion Night

  • Proposed topic: Selecting replacement candidates when an elected member cannot fulfil their term.
    • To be postponed to the July Discussion Night

Executive slate

The new Executive met after the meeting, and assigned the following positions:

  • Co-Chair: Sharon Sommerville (2nd year of 2-year term)
  • Co-Chair: Peter Croves (1st year of 2-year term)
  • Treasurer: Aden Seaman (1st year of 2-year term)
  • Secretary: Cathy Scott (1 year term)
  • Member-At-Large: Myron Steinman
  • Member-At-Large: Jim Sannes
  • Chapter Coordinator: To be determined at the Stategy Meeting in July 2020.

Minutes taken by Bob Jonkman