Make Your Voice Heard — Vote This Month 
on Two Important Proposals

By 12th Moon,
Council President

Voting has ended. The Patronage Dividend measure failed to pass. The Collegetown Crossing store measure passed.

12-12 Voting_Results_CSS_WebCouncil met Tuesday, Oct. 9 in The Space @ GreenStar, and set a record (at least a record for recent times) by adjourning at 8:35 rather than our usual 9:30 p.m. We all appreciated the early ending and that we had taken care of much business during the meeting.

During announcements we appreciated our outgoing Board Administrator Shayna Grajo for all she has done with us and we welcomed Brad Dingman as our new Board Administrator.

General Manager (GM) Brandon Kane presented the monthly GM's Report as our first item, showing that the stores are both doing well and staying quite busy. All departments are working with the Finance Department to create the 2013 budget in a new format that will separate departmental expenditures for each store. This will help prepare staff for evaluating a new satellite store in the future. The 2013 stores budget will be presented to Council at our meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 13 and is likely to include costs associated with building a central kitchen and bakery in our warehouse building at 700 West Buffalo Street.

Voting has ended. The Patronage Dividend measure failed to pass. The Collegetown Crossing store measure passed.


12-12 Voting_Results_PD_WebBrandon also reported that work will soon commence at the West-End store to construct additional cooler space where the picnic area used to be located, and that progress had been made toward city approval of the Collegetown Crossings development that we hope to be a part of. We learned that seven staff members, along with staff members of AFCU, have participated in Talking Circles sponsored by the Multicultural Resource Center this month, and that new membership numbers showed an influx of student members bringing us to about 8,700 total members.

A proposal to join the CBLD (Cooperative Board Leadership Development) 2013 program came next on our agenda. CBLD is a national consulting and training cooperative, and we have been participants in their programs the past two years, primarily working with one consultant who has led our retreats and provides answers and directions when asked. CBLD also offers free and low-cost training sessions a few times a year at locations scattered around the country. Council approved the proposal and the expenditure of $6,150 from the governance training line of our budget.

Speaking of budgets, it's just that time of year, and we next approved our Council 2013 Budget after some adjustments that increased a few lines and decreased a few, yielding a net decrease of around $400 in the total budget.

We next had a brief discussion of the various dates and times of upcoming membership meetings and gatherings, including the Fall Membership Meeting (Thursday, Nov. 8) and associated votes and information sessions and the Kids' Halloween Party. 

Prior to our break, we added an agenda item to address recent changes requested by the city planning board to the design of the Collegetown Crossing building proposed at 307 College Avenue. The changes, removing a bike rack and including a heated enclosed bus stop at the front of the building, would result in the floor plan and possibly the square footage of our proposed new satellite store being changed. Council had previously approved signing a lease with the owners of 307 College Ave. (contingent on our members voting this month to approve the store) that specified the floor plan and size. A proposal was approved to agree to a lease addendum adjusting the floor plan to best accommodate our needs.

After our mid-meeting break we passed over the next agenda item, the receipt of past meeting minutes, as the material was not ready for presentation.

Council approved our next agenda item, "GM Interpretations," which refers to the data that will be submitted in future reports for one of our new policies that requires an annual report. The policy, B.0, or "Global GM Constraint," generally covers the GM's responsibilities to ensure GreenStar staff does not do anything that's illegal or that goes against GreenStar's bylaws or policies.

Our last item for the evening was brought by our Personnel Committee. Continuing with our transition to our new governance system, we have been looking at our old policies and either incorporating them into the new policies, repealing them, amending them, or reorganizing them to differentiate policies from procedures, and identifying things that should be archived for future use. We previously discussed postponing revisions to the GM Job Description until some future GM search, but amended the description to change the GM salary range from $60,000 to $90,000 a year, to from $75,000 to $110,000 a year. The amended proposal was approved.

I'd like to note that this month you have the opportunity to vote and have your voice heard. On the day of Tuesday, Nov. 6 you will be able to cast your votes for a variety of political offices. During the entire month of November, you have the opportunity to vote on a proposed Patronage Dividend system and a second satellite store in Collegetown for GreenStar. As a member-owner of GreenStar, you are able to vote on these close-to-home issues that affect our stores and our community. Please take the time to become familiar with the proposals, attend the Fall Membership Meeting on Thursday, Nov. 8, stop in during informational open office hours at the West-End store (look for announcements in the stores for dates), and, please, vote.

Voting has ended. The Patronage Dividend measure failed to pass. The Collegetown Crossing store measure passed.

  • 04.10.15

    By Dan Hoffman,
Council Member

    2013 Dan Hoffman12th Moon, Kristen Kaplan, Eric Banford, Susan Beckley, Jessica Rossi and Mark Darling finished the counting in just under four hours.

    412 Total valid envelopes

    21 total invalid = 19- no ID, 1- first of two ballots, 1- no ballot in envelope

    Also = 1- name tag, 5- 2 cent slips, 1- Member Labor Request and two wooden nickles.

    Two thirds vote required to pass.

    Q#1 = PASS

    361 YES

    12 NO

    Q#2 = FAIL

    222 YES

    147 NO

    Q#3 = PASS

    311 Yes

    61 No

    Q#4 = PASS

    331 Yes

    22 NO

    Q#5 = PASS

    340 YES

    30 NO

    Q#6 = PASS

    366 YES

    7 NO

    member-owners are the only ones who have the power to change the Co-op's bylaws, the organization's most basic and important document. There is an opportunity to do so (or not) during this month — at the Fall Member Meeting, at the stores, or by mail.

    GreenStar's Council has established an ad hoc Bylaws Review Committee, which started meeting again earlier this year, after being inactive for at least two years. Council had referred a couple of issues to the committee, which identified several more on its own. In August, Council voted (unanimously, except in the case of #2, below) to send the committee's six recommended bylaws amendments to the membership for a YES or NO vote on each of the following questions:

    1. Should the Co-op be allowed to use a withdrawing member's refundable equity contribution [which could be up to $90] to pay off any outstanding debt the member has to the Co-op (such as for bad checks)?

    2. Should all Council candidates and members be required to satisfy any requirements associated with operational licenses maintained or sought by the Co-op (such as to sell or serve alcohol)?

    3. Should Council be allowed to conduct closed executive sessions for two additional topics — possible litigation or contract negotiations?

    4. Should the composition of Council's Immediacies Committee be changed to match that described in Council policy, and that of the Executive Planning Committee?

    5. Should the use of gender-specific pronouns (such as "he" or "she") be eliminated in the bylaws?

    6. Should three "clerical errors" made when the bylaws were amended in 2010 be officially corrected?

    Much more information on the proposed amendments, including detailed explanations, pro and con statements and voting instructions, are available in the Fall Member Mailing, which all current members should receive in the mail by October 6. Members can vote up until close of business on Oct. 31 at either store, by mailing in the ballot from the Mailing, or in person at the Fall Member Meeting, on Friday, Oct. 16, at the Space.



  • By Alexis Alexander,
Membership Manager

    I have woken to a new day, a day when GreenStar's annual Member Meetings and pancakes are defined as pure elegance and inspiration. Surprised?

    The morning after our Fall Member Meeting, I'm entranced by the experience of last night. I realize how far GreenStar has come over the years, and how integral and essential a partner we are in the wider regional food movement before us. Our roots as a buying club and grain store have matured into a multimillion-dollar community-based cooperative that affords us the ability, and the responsibility, to bring "real food," as Marketing Manager Joe Romano would say, back to a broader spectrum of our local and regional community. Read more...