COAC MINUTES OF 02-19-2019 CONFERENCE CALL
1. ATTENDANCE. COAC delegates met on a conference call at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, February 19, 2019. Following were the attendees:
- Tom Romito, Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society
- Linda Chen, Canton Audubon Society
- Mark Demyan, Greater Cleveland Audubon Society
- Matt Valencic, Greater Cleveland Audubon Society
- Jim Tomko, Greater Cleveland Audubon Society
- Jim Jablonski, Black River Audubon Society
- Nancy Howell, Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society
- Scott Peak, Audubon Society of Ohio
- Jackie Augustine, Tri-Moraine Audubon Society
- Sherilyn Burns, Greater Akron Audubon Society
- Linda Williams, Audubon Miami Valley
- Liz Woedl, Audubon Miami Valley
- Betsey O’Hagan, COAC Administrator
2. BYLAWS UPDATE.
- Jackie announced the interim officers of COAC, who are Jackie and Liz (co-presidents), Scott (vice president), and Nancy Howell (treasurer), and noted that we need one more officer. Sherilyn asked how we will stagger the terms of these positions. Jackie explained that we will elect officers with staggered terms.
- Jackie said the COAC delegates have been working on the bylaws and drew our attention to the March 3, 2019 draft of the bylaws. She noted that we are trying to distinguish between chapters and affiliates and clarify that only chapter delegates can vote on COAC matters. Sherilyn asked what incentive exists for affiliates to participate in COAC. Jackie said we would revisit this question during the upcoming March 3 workshop. Matt suggested that we reinstate language about affiliates in the mission statement and Tom concurred.
- Mark wants the bylaws to note that chapters not present at any meeting should be able to vote by proxy by e-mail or some other method in advance of the meeting. We agreed by consensus to change the language in Article IV, paragraph 2 from “A simple majority of the chapters present will decide on the issue” by removing the work “present.”
- One delegate noted that according to paragraph 3 of the mission statement, one of the purposes of our forums is “to provide an opportunity to discuss and take action on problems arising in a chapter’s districts,” and asked what districts are. Jackie said that was an oversight and we will correct it.
- Jackie said we eliminated references to the former Audubon Ohio state office in the mission statement. Others asked about our relationship to the Great Lakes region of the National Audubon Society. Jackie said NAS people at the recent Great Lakes regional meeting announced that they will support chapters through advocacy and grants. Linda Chen said, and Jackie echoed her, that NAS people made it clear that they want the chapters to support NAS. Mark said NAS people told him that they would help us. Jackie concluded this discussion by say we should maintain contact with NAS.
- Jim Jablonski raised the issue of how COAC may require a fee for membership, as Article I, paragraph 2 states. Jackie said chapters delegates will vet any fee that we contemplate and vote on it. Liz explained that COAC used to levy a fee on chapters based their per capita membership (the number of people that NAS said were in each chapter). Jim clarified that the bylaws should state who will decide that COAC will require a fee. Tom asserted that we would not resolve this issue during the conference call and should table it until a time when we can focus on it. Delegates agreed by consensus to do this.
3. MARCH 3 WORKSHOP.
- Jackie turned discussion to the upcoming workshop in Aurora. Betsey pointed us to the schedule on the COAC website (counciloac.org/news/annual-meeting-50-year-anniversary).
- Betsey reported on which chapters are planning to attend. Jim Tomko and Mark noted that the capacity of the meeting room is about 40.
- Sherilyn asked how we are going to conduct business during the lunch period. Betsey said Jackie and Liz will have to manage this.
4. CLOSING REMARKS.
- Jackie reminded us that we need one more board member.
- Mark asked Betsey to send out a registration list and tell us who is not attending. Betsey did this the following day.
- Jackie adjourned the meeting at 8:00 p.m.
Respectfully submitted by Tom Romito.