Thank you to all members who participated in our nine week expanded strategy team process to hammer out a workplans for becoming a coop and expanding our organization!
The plans for becoming a coop signal a major and historic shift in how our organization functions and therefore require the approval of our existing members - so please read on to learn about what the committee has recommend and read our proposed new by-laws.
The workplan for expanding the organization has already been approved by the Leadership Committee and is being implemented immediately.
Previously, Media Jumpstart, Inc operated as a non-profit 501c3 organization in which the Board legally controlled the organization and appointed new board members. The Board members voluntarily allowed the elected Leadership Committee to make all decisions for the organization. We propose turning over legal control of the organization to the Members and Staff by retiring the Leadership Committee and empowering members and staff to elect the Board as a multi-stakeholder organization. This decision means we have decided not to incorporate under the New York state Coop law because the law precludes a multi-stake holder operation. We have also chosen to continue as a non-profit, even though it means our members will not technically be “owners”. By remaining a non-profit, we ensure that our organization cannot begin issuing dividends, distrubting earnings, or otherwise try to profit from its operation.
Our legal name has always been Media Jumpstart, Inc and we have been operating under the name May First/People Link. We will continue as Media Jumpstart, Inc, but to help express the significance of our new by-laws, we propose operating under the name “May First Movement Technology.”
Previously, May First/People Link operated extra-legally as a collaboration between Media Jumpstart, Inc and Primero de Mayo (based in Mexico) in which both organizations operated under the power of the elected Leadership Committee. We propose that each organization operate autonomously, with Primero de Mayo members gaining automatic membership in May First Movement Technology, and a reserved number of seats on the Board of Directors. Primero de Mayo commits to making payments in kind or in cash to offset the costs of membership and program activity to support the movement building mission of the organization.
Based on nine weeks of discussion and hard work, the expanded strategy team wrote a plain language by-laws draft.
Next, our generous volunteer lawyer from the Urban Justice Center helped us shape that draft into a legally sound document. While the resulting document has a lot of extra verbage, it still retains the principles and goals of the original draft.
Between April 24th and May 10th, members are strongly encouraged to review the draft and post comments and questions via our discussion board.
On May 13th, the Leadership Committee will review all comments, incorporate changes as necessary and then approve the final version.
After translation, the final version will be sent to all members for a vote.
Members will vote on three items:
The full agendas of the expanded meetings are documented below for historical purposes.
During the 2018 Membership Meeting, two proposals were overwhelming passed by the membership:
Based on feedback during our two membership meeting discussions in December, Leadership Committee voted to address both proposals together, in a single body.