Extraordinary General Meeting 5 March 2018 – Minutes

Minutes of the Extraordinary General Meeting

held in Sandbach Town Hall Monday 5th March 2018

Committee Present: Arnie Laing, Kevin Dean, Alan Casey, Alice Holmes, Alex Black, Judi Hewitt, Barrie Hacking, Don Rickards, Geoff Coldwell, Sandy Boyle

Members Present: 159

Apologies for Absence:  The names of members who sent apologies before the meeting are listed separately.

Committee Member Apologies: Paula Reilly-Cooper

Arnie explained that as vice chairman he was presiding over the meeting after the resignation of the chairman, secretary and groups coordinator. The resignations followed a difference of opinion in committee about the resolution which was proposed for this meeting in January but which has been postponed to the annual general meeting in November. [The abandoned resolution stated: It is proposed that all members pay the annual subscription fee and we do not offer free places to Group Leaders or Committee Members]

Proposal 1: The committee recommends that this meeting accepts a resolution to adopt the single object clause:

The advancement of education and, in particular, the education of older people and those who are retired from full-time work by all means, including associated activities conducive to learning and personal development.

in place of the two object clauses written into the constitution of October 2003:

(i) to advance education and in particular the education of people not in full time gainful employment who are in their Third Age (being the period of time after the first age of childhood dependence and the second age of full time employment and/or parental responsibility) residing in Sandbach and its surrounding locality.
(ii) the provision of facilities for leisure time and recreational activities with the object of improving the conditions of life for the above persons in the interests of their social welfare.

Trevor Boxer objected that the new object clause doesn’t make sense and Richard Howells asked why the wording had to change. Arnie explained that the wording was agreed between the Third Age Trust and the Charity Commission and was to be applied to the constitution of every U3A in the UK. The Charity Commission had realised that the second clause in the objects section of many U3As (clause ii above) is not permitted under charity law even though it had been recommended by the Third Age Trust. By changing our objects clause to the agreed wording, we ensure that all the activities we provide can continue unchanged.

A suggestion was made that the meeting was not invoked in accordance with the Sandbach U3A constitution but this was overruled as an incorrect interpretation of its clause 14.

The meeting voted to pass proposal 1 with 199 votes For and 17 Against. Included in the For total were 98 votes recorded before the meeting. No votes against the proposal were recorded before the meeting. 18 members in the hall registered an abstention.

Proposal 2: The committee recommends that the meeting agrees to raise the annual subscription from £8 to £10.

The subscription has not increased since 2010 while the expenses, particularly hiring venues, continue to go up.

Isabel Carraher said that the membership had received too little information about the cost of equipment, the management system, capitation payments to the Third Age Trust and the cost of the Third Age Matters, which she didn’t want to read. She proposed that the vote to increase the annual fee be postponed to the annual general meeting in November. David Wharton seconded the proposal.

Arnie thanked Isabel and then asked the meeting to vote. There were 59 For postponing the vote to the AGM and 84 Against. With the failure of that amendment the meeting then voted on proposal 2.

The meeting voted to pass proposal 2 with 214 votes For and 14 Against. Included in the For total were 93 votes recorded before the meeting. The Against total included 4 votes recorded before the meeting. 12 members in the hall registered an abstention.

Arnie thanked the members for their participation in the vote.


The meeting closed at 10:45am.