General Meeting Agenda 8/28/2019

Date/Time: Wednesday, August 28,  7:00 - 9:00 pm

The Co-op: 1083 Fulton


Note-taker: Ellen Frank-Delgado

Note-takers - please see link to secretary responsibilities.


Directors Present: Chris, Ahmad, Lindsay, Matthew

Directors Absent: Christina

Others in attendance: Willa, DK, EJ (potential member!), Amanda, Bianca

Approved Unanimously September 25, 2019

Any person attending may participate equally in discussions, but only Co-op members/owners may vote on any issues.

Next Annual Meeting & Election is  Sept 25, 2019 at the store. Want to be a facilitator, secretary, timekeeper or to propose items for a future GM agenda? Please email (work credit always allotted)

The Co-op’s 2019 meeting and store closure calendar can be viewed here.

Welcome/Orientation  7:00-7:05 (5 min)

Welcome and introductions. Brief explanation of the purpose of the Board Meeting. Questions welcomed!


Consent Agenda  7:05-7:15 (10 min) 

A collective vote on decisions that have already been made or that don’t generally require/solicit discussion. Attendees can pull out any item they would like more discussion on, and this item will be moved to discussion at the end of the meeting. Information on all consent agenda item votes will be circulated in advance of the meeting.

Approve Minutes  7:15-7:20 (5 min)

Board votes whether to approve the public minutes from the board meeting. These minutes will then be ready to post online.

1. General Manager Update  7:20-8:05 (45 min)

  • July was active, August was slow - good opportunity to plan for Fall

  • Concerns within last few months: 

    • Cashiers have been slow at:

      • Weighing bulk when it comes to own jars (more evident with Bushwick members who have a machine that subtracts weights for you)

        • Suggestions: Set up station to weigh own jars or buy scales that do it for you

        • One member offered to problem solve this

      • Co-counting (esp. Closing shift)

        • Suggestions: do co-counting in back office with Willa, manager, etc.

        • Willa to loop in Emily

    • Lack of nutritional labelling 

      • Creative Cloud / InDesign to make labels

    • Visitors coming in for AC/water routinely

      • Suggestions: giving members language for no soliciting, blanket policy from ops (more confusing for members & the people walking in if no blanket policy) -- think about how this relates to language for when anyone walks into the coop to greet them & welcome them into the space

        • Ex. You can have water, use the bathroom, sit down for five minutes, etc. 

        • Ex. If there is an issue, ensuring members know what to do

      • Willa to loop in Emily

    • Opening of Lincoln Market

      • Emphasize the things that make the coop the coop: pricing, community, local

      • Fall: outreach / marketing → potential theme for annual meeting in Sept.

    • WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) 

      • We have to have a min # of certain items always on stock that we don’t have

      • Amanda to look into the items we would need to see if it would be worth doing (ex. Formula, milk, eggs)

        • See WIC Requirements and Goals

          • Short Answer: We need 3 Million in Sales and Reasonable open hours (6 days per week, 8 hours per day), before we can start on other items needed.

  • Projects:

    • Produce task force to help educate members on our products

    • Being transparent with labelling 

2. Committee Reports  7:__-_:__ (__min) Add discussions as needed from committees and liaisons below.

if there is nothing to be discussed or decided but a report is needed add at the end of this agenda.

  • Finance and Investments:
    Committee chair: Bianca Orlando; Liaison: Christina Travers

    • 24k - low, but summer (plunges overall in summer)

    • New finance member Paul taking over for Joshua

    • No equity, didn’t pay taxes for those periods

    • Pay the $12k loan payments due in Jan to those who have already extend their graces

    • Additional loans later in January

    • Use reserves for principal 

    • Produce has been doing much better - see it in the #’s, bank accounts, and visually in the store! 

    • Better based on our merchandising this time of year (store looks thin, but slow anyways)

      • Ask merchandising for how ordering went this summer for future summers

      • Spoilage rates in Revel declined between May 10% → August 3.5% 

    • Inventory discussion: 

      • Large portion of Willa’s job description is inventory management and revel 

      • Language in JD is different than what she does, would like clarification 

      • JD based on ideal situation 

      • General manager job Willa is doing is store manager 

      • Need someone to enter things into Revel on receiving days + pull reports on what is sold 

      • Creating a shift something like that - part of receiving (ex. Tuesday / Wednesday shift taking from Friday invoice) = 6 people a week x 4 = adding complication of errors vs. getting one person who is reliable 

      • Make dignified position to replace Willa on the floor 

      • Have a couple people interested in this (some remote work, some floor work)

      • Willa would want mix of two- working floor + members is important, after revamping is done stepping off and splitting day 

      • Next steps: working on position and what should look like  + what that looks like with weekends

  • Merchandising:
    Committee chair: Sarah Chinn; Liaison: _____

  • Marketing:
    Committee chair: DK Holland; Liaison: Ahmad Shaibani

    • Wayfinding - Carla Sosa - Project Manager

    • Website: Marci LeBruen - Project Manager

    • Content: Max Cherry - Project Manager

    • Weekly/Monthly: Liz Baker - Lead

    • Social Media: Liz Clayton - Lead

  • Outreach:
    Committee chair: Shakima; Liaison: Ahmad Shaibani

  • Membership:
    Committee chair: Renee; Liaison: _____

    • Fall Membership Drive in place, starting after Labor Day.  Marketing will be making flyers. Need Outreach to commit to an Open Shopping Weekend Date.

  • IT:
    Committee chair: Sonia Garbes-Putzel; Liaison: Chris Gollmar

  • Governance:
    Committee chair: _____; Liaison Matthew Talmage

  • Operations and Design-Build:
    Committee chairs: Emily Nonko, Lindsay Reichart; Liaison Matthew Talmage

  • HR:
    Committee chair: Hannah GW; Liaison: Chris Gollmar

4. Committee Asks and Gives  8:__- _:__ (10mins) (Committee Chairs and Liaisons)

Committees asks for help or support / others give below:

5. AGENDA - free flowing and aspirational discussions: 8:05-

  • Annual meeting and Election planning

    • Need point person who isn't running for the board (Matthew is working on this)

      • Gathers all bios + names of people running

      • Goes through agendas so any board decisions get pulled into ratification

      • Coordinate with newsletter to send everything to members

    • # of board seats open?  

    • Need financial information for last fiscal year

    • Pull any board decisions for ratification (including any from this meeting) (Matthew also working on this)

    • Potential theme: long-term vision for store (ex. # FTE, buying building, PT people, etc.) 

    • Other potential topic: moratorium, but should make a decision amongst the board for this


    • Bushwick Food Coop had a fire July 3rd, and will be closed for the foreseeable future. Some of their members are interested in shopping with us while Bushwick rebuilds. Do we want to offer shopping privileges? (Similar to follow ups with Lefferts).

      • From the last discussion, we wanted to make sure that shoppers are putting in work hours (similar to Park Slope Members)

      • Could discuss transferring hours, reciprocal shopping privileges, etc.

      • Or we could offer our regular membership offers (free trial month, then zucchini plan or paying membership fees).

      • Some members have joined on Zucchini → so could credit that money vs. paying them back 

      • Bushwick has about ~300 people total, and we had ~50 shop with us prior, so need to cap # of people working elsewhere to shop here (Board Members + Full Time Staff + # of working members) 

        • We should ask Bushwick # of folks looking to shop here w/ and w/o work 

    • Follow-up on guest shopping proposal

      • Skipping

    • Till Membership meeting in Fall: Continue discussion re: emergency redemption moratorium lift? Or one redemption/month or whatever was discussed a few months back?

      • People aren’t cashing checks vs. emergency folks 

      • People on the list from 2013- fulfilled periodically

      • Risk of not making loan repayment in Jan 2020

      • Propose for bylaw change just in case of profit - probably legal advice necessary

      • In meantime, space needed for good will 

    • Time to really enforce household plan?  Many families only have one member. Need their investment and labor: special deal now of $100 or $125 investment for additional family member to existing members that have been with us for a while?

      • Offer “family plan?”  Families that join together/same time (any plan)  pay $300 (or $275?) basically it’s our membership sans admin fee if we do $300. Would be a unique and separate plan (need to speak to IT about implementation)

    • Can we convert part of basement into childcare area?

      • Not possible at this time + city regulations

    • Securing weekend coverage: through hiring a weekend General Manager? Through re-implementation of the ‘super-leader’ position?

    • How and when NYPD can access the tapes (outside of a warrant, the GM and/or a board member should be there, do we want to willingly give over the tapes, and in what circumstances (i.e. a violent crime vs a theft?)

      • Not in good spot for seeing who goes into the office 

        • Look at the door, down an aisle, and up another

        • Cannot see who goes into the office 

      • Non-coop related: What is the procedure when NYPD asks for the tapes (has happened twice)

        • Telling them none of our cameras catch the outside of the store

        • Need to come back when general manager is here

        • Only holds footage for 2 weeks 

        • Still willing to help the police, but would need a subpoena

        • Need to learn how to save things for longer

      • Coop related: 

        • Need to wait for general manager 

      • Side-note: 

        • Window in office, should probably install camera pointing at that window

        • Bars are getting installed 

        • If ops wants a camera, is a decision to make with the board

    • Vendor procurement (longer term goal?): specifically, I'd like to propose that we do not buy from ULine, unless there are no other vendors that have the product that we need. In a perfect world we would have a vendor procurement team, that researches products and vendors and find the most ethical solution for what we need, but I don't think that's feasible right now. (We would love to find a cooperative option and an Amazon alternative as well). 

      • Passing along to membership committee

6. Bike Rack  8:00___ (10mins) (Notetaker)

Closing  8:55 - 9:00 (5 min) Board reviews votes at the end of each Meeting

Reports in writing:

Membership and Finance Report

  • Monthly membership report (link

Summary of report:

Current number of working members: ________

Number of new members and deactivated in November: __ new members,  

__ reactivated member, __ trial members

Number of existing members waiting for investment returns: _________

We’ve seen roughly a ___% increase in membership since January.

  • Monthly finance report  (link)