19:53 pm
Hi fam! We're starting #OWS Spokescouncil at Riverside Church. Follow here, @LibertySqGA2, @LibertySqGA3, and @LibertySqGA4. #NYCSC
19:54 pm
Announcements: Kitchen tells us that they were contacted by someone and asked to hold off on filing their permit request for #Occupalooza.
19:55 pm
Kitchen says the person indicated that other ppl (she said they gave the impression they meant "higher-ups") were planning a similar event.
19:55 pm
Kitchen: "I have to say, I found the conversation condescending," like they would get us involved eventually but wanted to run show. #NYCSC
19:55 pm
So, that was upsetting to her. Justin from Info tells us they consensed to split back into InfoHub and Info. #NYCSC #OWS
19:56 pm
Town Planning tells us that the 2,3 trains are being shut down at 10pm tonight. "I recommend, for this reason, ths meeting end before then."
19:56 pm
Nick from OWSNYC.TV is going to be doing a teach-in here on Sunday at OTS. "If anyone's interested, they're welcome to join." #NYCSC #OWS
19:58 pm
Trish tells us the "General Assembly Working Group" will meet 2/18 at 11am-1pm to "discuss the 1% w/in #OWS." #NYCSC #OWS
19:58 pm
Marisa, too, is "concerned about the 1%" in #OWS. At 16 Beaver on Weds, she'll host a convo re: sustainability & power, privilege, access.
19:59 pm
OK, we're moving to our first proposal, which is a continuation of Wednesday's discussion (which did not end in consensus). #NYCSC #OWS
20:00 pm
"Given what happened Wednesday, we tried to bring a budget proposal." Thought spending freeze would end Tues; it won't. #NYCSC #OWS
20:00 pm
"That puts some of the time pressure off, and I know some of the concerns Weds were about letting this come out of concerns in the…" #NYCSC
20:01 pm
Cont'd: "…community rather than people pushing it." "But also, we promised you numbers: what we have, wht we've spent, and current wkly #s."
20:02 pm
"First, our $ is in Amalgamated Bank; there's $182,xxx," in that account." Plus pending equals "a grand total of $192,374.69." #NYCSC #OWS
20:02 pm
"The bail fund is about $92k," which means we have roughly $100k cash-on-hand." Hopes $ will pick back up, but "I wouldn't count on it."
20:02 pm
Christine tells us Accounting has just about gotten up to date with online records. "That's sort of a victory for the movement." #NYCSC
20:03 pm
"Every week, we have 6 reoccurring budgets. The biggest is Kitchen; they're allocated $10k a week. They do not usually spend $10k/wk."
20:03 pm
Cont'd: "Thank you, Kitchen. They usually spend between $4-6k a week." Street Medics get $1100/wk, the Medical Clinic gets $1050/wk." #NYCSC
20:04 pm
Cont'd: "We consensed in this body on 4 wks of Metrocards at $4080/wk." One more after this week, then it expires. #NYCSC #OWS
20:04 pm
Cont'd: "There's a $2k/week Outreach printing budget, & Facilitation roughly gets $450/week for space for SC; they haven't been using all."
20:04 pm
"So, right now, we've got 5 or 6 weeks" of money at current outflow, "and that's with the spending freeze." #NYCSC #OWS
20:05 pm
Christine: "And a reportback: Accounting is looking into bookkeepers." "We understand we're amateurs; we're looking for professional help."
20:05 pm
Ravi: "The proposal we brought Weds; there were 2 parts. The first was baseline-type things we thought were important to frame discussion."
20:06 pm
Cont'd: "and the second wasn't a budget itself, but it was something a budget process might look like." Wanted buy-in for process from us.
20:06 pm
Cont'd: "One of the standards we should be measuring is, for instance, the idea that anything we spend $ on must make clear contribution..."
20:06 pm
Cont'd: "…to our movement's actions and goals." People last week were confused about which WGs fit into that. #NYCSC #OWS
20:08 pm
OK, so we're going to take stack for an open discussion a la this proposal: http://t.co/q4KSSHBg #NYCSC #OWS
20:09 pm
In Spokescouncil, working groups confer, and then their spokes express the resulting dialogue or consensus to larger group. #NYCSC #OWS
20:14 pm
Info is first up. Notes we have various groups: working groups, affinity groups, movement groups. "Whatever we do about this budget, we..."
20:15 pm
Cont'd: "…should be sure we're clear on what all of the groups are." #NYCSC #OWS
20:16 pm
Someone asks which working groups would be part of the budgeting process. Ravi answers that the InfoHub/TechOps def of WGs mostly covers it.
20:17 pm
Ravi notes that "action and event oriented expenditures" shld go to GA. "Those can be one-offs." Spokes'd be for reoccurring budgets. #NYCSC
20:17 pm
Melanie, Facilitation: "Will there come a time when we'll decide what's "operational" and what's not?" #NYCSC #OWS
20:18 pm
A: "It's a question." [Originally, SC was for "operational" groups; distinction burred post-eviction. -Ed.] They didn't bring original…
20:18 pm
Cont'd: …proposal because they felt like this was one of the questions that needed conversation first. #NYCSC #OWS
20:19 pm
Ravi suggests they wanted to affirm that *all* working groups can participate in SC (consense/not consense on budgets)…. #NYCSC #OWS
20:19 pm
Cont'd: …but only operational groups, as defined in Spokescouncil proposal, could propose budgets. #NYCSC #OWS
20:20 pm
Ravi also notes that currently, nobody can bring budget requests b/c of spending freeze. "Getting a budget together is the only way…" #NYCSC
20:20 pm
Cont'd: "…to end the spending freeze." Notes that unless GA changes rules, it retains power over "one-off movement expenses" #NYCSC #OWS
20:21 pm
Media: "In Media, as in other groups, there are also affinity groups raising their own funds." Wants to get better handle on that before...
20:21 pm
Cont'd: …forming budgets. "I suggest bringing affinity groups into the conversation." #NYCSC #OWS
20:21 pm
Ravi agrees, says James is working on a project mapping our allies and groups. "The more info that plugs into that project, the better…"
20:22 pm
Cont'd: "…we'll be able to map all that out. There's a Google form, there's a paper form," please consider registering your AG w/ Info.
20:22 pm
Robert: "The third thing you brought to #SC [the ending of petty cash. -Ed] -- can we put that forward for group consensus tonight?" #NYCSC
20:23 pm
Ravi and Christine weren't planning to, but "if people agree with that" and it wouldn't be a lengthy discussion…. #NYCSC #OWS
20:23 pm
Ravi notes that they feel like the conversation seemed to need more discussion when proposed on Wednesday. #NYCSC #OWS
20:27 pm
It looks like we're all into the "ending petty cash" proposal, so Stairs suggests we move to that proposal after this stack ends. Agreed.
20:28 pm
Last on stack is Trish, who claims to be from the NYCGA Working Group (we've never seen anyone else rep that group). #NYCSC #OWS
20:29 pm
Trish asks 1st if she can get the Accounting report in writing. (She can.) Second, "approx amnt of $ in wire transfers do we do a month?"
20:29 pm
Trish cont'd: "And third, does the General Assembly approve these transfers?" #NYCSC #OWS
20:29 pm
A: "First, I'm more than happy to give the information here to any working group that wants it, and it'll be in the minutes, I imagine."
20:29 pm
Cont'd: "Secondly, the only wire transfers we've ever done have been consensed on by GA," i.e. giving money to Occupy Oakland. #NYCSC #OWS
20:30 pm
And that's all on the Spreadsheet, Christine says. #NYCSC #OWS
20:30 pm
OK, proposal: "Petty cash is awful; it's rife with opportunities for corruption and we should never use it again. Never ever." #NYCSC #OWS
20:31 pm
@Alg0rhYthM [totally objective - if it's true, why wouldn't it be? we want readers to understand there is no "GA working group". -Ed.]
20:32 pm
Trish: "What's petty cash?" A: "It's a random process that never really got consensed on by the GA where it was agreed that…" #NYCSC
20:32 pm
Cont'd: "…GA didn't need to hear proposals under $100, which somehow turned into WGs getting $100/day." #NYCSC #OWS
20:33 pm
CQ: "Did the GA approve of petty cash ever?" Christine will explain where it came from. "Way back in the park, it's like, ok, emergencies.."
20:33 pm
Cont'd: "…came up, and we handed out cash in emergencies. That got a little bit out of control, so the GA said, we need to consense on.."
20:33 pm
Cont'd: "…anything over $100." So ppl then extrapolated and said anything *under* $100 was discretionary. #NYCSC #OWS
20:34 pm
Cont'd: "That was fine for awhile, and many groups used it responsibly. But once we got so many working groups, it ended up being b/w..."
20:34 pm
Cont'd: "…$2k and $5k a day." Hence, spending freeze; we weren't budgeting. "Instead of relying on discretionary funds, let's budget."#NYCSC
20:34 pm
"If you need discretionary cash, that's fine, but" put it in your budget. #NYCSC #OWS
20:39 pm
Someone: "Occupy Houston are being evicted!" Someone Point of Processes. Christine: "proposers are officially in #solidarity w/ Houston."
20:40 pm
OK, working groups have conferred and we're moving onto Concerns. Trish only one on stack: "The Concern is this; when groups have…" #NYCSC
20:40 pm
Cont'd: "…expenditures, OK, and say they had to buy some cassette tapes for a recorder -- just an example -- and that $ is paid…" #NYCSC
20:41 pm
Cont'd: "…out before a receipt is brought to Finance, is that going to be refunded? It's in minutes of the group that it was consensed on."
20:41 pm
A: "If it wasn't petty cash, it wouldn't automatically be returned, but if you spent it before budget was passed, you can say you'd…" #NYCSC
20:41 pm
Cont'd: "…like to bring your budget for $1k/month," but also include some money for past expenditures. #NYCSC #OWS
20:42 pm
Trish: "Are we speaking about operating groups submitting to Spokescouncil a standing budget?" Christine answers, Trish asks her to slow.
20:42 pm
Trish: "I can't comprehend that fast. Are we speaking about cash or a standing budget that will be consensed on in SC for #OWS WGs?" #NYCSC
20:42 pm
A: "Right now, we're only speaking about ending petty cash." Trish goes to interrupt. A: "Let me finish -- you asked me a question." #NYCSC
20:43 pm
Trish: "OK, so we're speaking of petty cash, which was known as $100/day for working groups." A: "Yes." #NYCSC #OWS
20:44 pm
Next concern suggests we may need a special committee to approve budgets. Ravi suggests that's exactly what #SC was made for. #NYCSC #OWS
20:45 pm
Marisa's amendment: "That you ask all groups to bring a projected budget, and then we'll pass an actual budget from that." #NYCSC #OWS
20:45 pm
Ravi/Christine love her idea, but want to keep the proposal simple. "I think if we did that, it'd open up a whole new group of concerns."
20:46 pm
Anthony interrupts a back and forth: "Is it yay, or nay?" Ravi: "Nay. I mean, <3s, but nay" on that friendly amendment. #NYCSC #OWS
20:47 pm
OK, that's it for stack. Stairs: "Can we take a temperature check for going forward and getting consensus on this thing? "#NYCSC #OWS
20:47 pm
Stairs: "Do we have any standasides?" One. "I don't like the fact that you're making working groups bring forward a budget," spend our time.
20:48 pm
Trish is also stand aside. "We feel WGs should have stipends, allowance, petty cash at their disposal. There are too many things…" #NYCSC
20:48 pm
Cont'd: "…going on in the occupation right now." "If we have to start writing and waiting it could" bog down WGs. #NYCSC #OWS
20:51 pm
Stairs: "Any blocks?" Trish lks sound of tht better, will block. [This frm someone who's frequently loud abt financial accountability. -Ed.]
20:51 pm
Marisa points out that Trish has spent 38 minutes speaking so far this meeting, "which has kept others from speaking." #NYCSC #OWS
20:52 pm
Trish: "38 minutes? No, we've been in Spokes for 38 mins." Marisa: "39 minutes. Furthermore, she comes to every SC and knows process."#NYCSC
20:53 pm
Folks are trying to get Trish to stick with a standaside. She won't; she'll speak to her block. "It's a moral, ethical, and safety…" #NYCSC
20:53 pm
Cont'd: "…concern; these groups are out accomplishing their mission statements, they can't be bogged down." "Shortest distance…" #NYCSC
20:54 pm
Cont'd: "…between 2 points is a straight line, not all this bureaucracy." "Working groups should have fiscal autonomy." #NYCSC #OWS
20:54 pm
Ravi: "We feel petty cash is a serious problem; if groups feel they need help w/ budgeting" including petty cash, they'll help. #NYCSC #OWS
20:55 pm
Someone points out an issue seems to be that we're removing petty cash w/o a new system. Christine: "The new system is budgets." #NYCSC
20:56 pm
Christine lets the guy know - it's his first time here - that we have a spending freeze, so new system won't kick in til budgeting anyway.
20:57 pm
Trish removes her block, ostensibly in response to the response from proposers. "We have consensus!" And petty cash bites the dust. #NYCSC
20:57 pm
Next proposer is Robert from Town Planning: "Spokescouncil will start at 7pm. If it doesn't, ppl present can round up facilitators & start."
20:58 pm
Robert, cont'd: "And under no circumstances will Metrocards ever be distributed in the same room as Spokescouncil is in session." #NYCSC
20:59 pm
Robert: "And the third part, the SC will not adjourn, even momentarily, for food or for Metrocards." [Yikes! -Ed.] #NYCSC #OWS
21:05 pm
OK, CQs. CQ: "Are you aware a proposal about starting Spokes at 7pm" was passed before and promptly ignored? #NYCSC #OWS
21:06 pm
A: "I am aware, and part of this is to empower the group to pull facilitators from group and start on time." #NYCSC #OWS
21:06 pm
CQ: "Is there a minimum # of ppl? What if there were only 2 ppl?" A: "They could start, but only b/c there's no quorum. This does not..."
21:06 pm
Cont'd: "…preclude having a quorum." Now conferring on FAs and concerns. #NYCSC #OWS
21:14 pm
OK, we're stacking up Concerns and Friendly Amendments. Think Tank: "In order to start a meeting on time, we need at least a quorum." #NYCSC
21:15 pm
Think Tank proposes a quorum of 7 Spokes as a friendly amendment. Robert accepts, clarifies "it's in absence of Facilitation team." #NYCSC
21:15 pm
Cont'd: "If the Facilitation team shows up, it starts then." TT: "You're making an amendment to my amendment?" Hahah. Nvm, Robert says.
21:16 pm
Robert accepts that without his modifications. "Let's see where this goes." #NYCSC #OWS
21:17 pm
Robert wants to know how we define present. "Signed in on the list? OK. When 7 spokes are signed in, the meeting can start." #NYCSC #OWS
21:18 pm
Next FA was also a quorum amendment. Third was, too. Alternative Kitchen's is the same… "the issue of quorum is a hot topic, but any…"
21:19 pm
Cont'd: "…structure we build without quorum will be taken advantage of" by people who would abuse low attendance of a meeting. #NYCSC #OWS
21:19 pm
Someone asks if there is any type of quorum now. "No." FA: "So you're making a quorum?" A: "That is correct." #NYCSC #OWS
21:20 pm
"So, in other words, you have to have 7 people to hear any proposals." A: "In order to have a meeting, you need 7 ppl. Correct."
21:20 pm
Kitchen notes that sometimes they can't get here until 7:30 b/c they're distributing food. "If we have announcements, will Spokes step…"
21:21 pm
Cont'd: "..back and let us be heard." Robert hmms, suggests they need to choose attending to other business or attending the meeting. #NYCSC
21:21 pm
Robert does throw a Point of Affection to Kitchen, tho. Trish's concern: "Is this a consensus process because you have 7 Spokes? Who…"#NYCSC
21:21 pm
Cont'd: "…are they going to confer with to get a consensus and turn back around and consense on whatever the issue is?" #NYCSC #OWS
21:22 pm
Cont'd: "This is not the way the process is done. At 7:00, if there are 5 ppl in the room," they can't make a decision "b/c that's.." #NYCSC
21:22 pm
Cont'd: "…not a consensus." Suggests there must be someone from Facilitation and Minutes here to have a #SC. #OWS
21:22 pm
Robert: "You got it. We're not waiting for the latecomers." #NYCSC #OWS
21:23 pm
Ravi's POI: "My understanding is that Spokes are Spokes--" not 7 ppl, but Spokes. "So if there's 5 ppl from Think Tank, and 3 from..."
21:23 pm
Cont'd: "…Facilitation, that's 2 spokes." Wouldn't be 7 ppl in the room, but 7 spokes. "Proposal refers to Spokes and not people." #NYCSC
21:24 pm
Media: "I just wanted to say, in addition to that, Facilitation has to be present, Minutes has to be present, & Livestream has to be here."
21:25 pm
Media cont'd: "If Livestream is here, then we know how many people are at the meeting." Robert suggests those here can organize those roles.
21:25 pm
Robert goes to speak to Sean, who's facilitating. Facilitation PoPs: "You're facilitating; you can't be on the proposal team." #NYCSC #OWS
21:26 pm
Anthony: "Due to the fact that…" Sean: "He keeps asking me questions." Anthony: "…Sean will be stepping down" from facilitating. #NYCSC #OWS
21:29 pm
Ravi's POI: "At Saturday's GA, there was no livestream, and it went on just fine." Someone corrects, says it was Spokescouncil. #NYCSC #OWS
21:29 pm
Robert actually accepts the Livestream component. But Minutes and Facilitation "will be pulled from whoever's present." #NYCSC #OWS
21:31 pm
Facilitation is next: "Our concerns are that the Metrocards should be allowed to be given our here, b/c these are voices that get…" #NYCSC
21:31 pm
Cont'd: "…marginalized, and we'd like to have those voices here." Same for food. "RE: 7pm, we propose a friendly amendment that we have…"
21:31 pm
Cont'd: "…at least 10 spokes and 25 people," and that should not include the facilitation team. #NYCSC #OWS
21:31 pm
Cont'd: "And that it should be 7:15, giving 15 minutes leeway to ppl who get stuck on the train." #NYCSC #OWS
21:32 pm
Trish interrupts. Melanie confirms for Facilitation: "That's 10 legitimate spokes, 25 ppl, plus facilitators." #NYCSC #OWS
21:32 pm
Robert: "This proposal is to keep Metrocard distribution outside of the room; if we'd held that line Weds at Quaker Meeting House…" #NYCSC
21:33 pm
Cont'd :"…we might have gotten through that proposal." It can happen outside the room, he says. Declines that amendment. #NYCSC #OWS
21:34 pm
Melanie: "The group that's present should consent", re: banning stopping meeting for food or Metrocards. So, cut that part out. #NYCSC
21:35 pm
A: "Not accepted." Robert also declines their amendments to make it 7:15. "It can be anytime. Let's make it 7." Oh snap. #NYCSC #OWS
21:37 pm
Sage has a POI, suggesting that the Metrocard line is not what slowed down Wednesday's spokes meeting. Robert: "I'll stick to my story."
21:37 pm
Robert offers Facilitation "a 6:45 starting time, with delay until 7pm" max. He also declines the 10 spokes/20 ppl: "We've only actually…"
21:37 pm
Cont'd: "..told the group that we'd start at a specific time once," and "everybody magically showed up." "This proposal is to eliminate..."
21:38 pm
Cont'd: "…that lax meeting policy" and hold us to 7pm starting time. #NYCSC #OWS
21:41 pm
Next Concern questions whether 7 spokes is a high enough percentage to constitute quorum. "Usually orgs need 50% present for quorum." #NYCSC
21:42 pm
Cont'd: "So, what's the number of possible working groups?" Ravi says there are about 100. So, FA is to make it 25. #NYCSC #OWS
21:44 pm
Robert: "We don't have 25 now." Speaker suggests that we should ask why that number is so awry. #NYCSC #OWS
21:44 pm
DA's concerns: "My primary concern with this proposal is that we could have spent this time talking about the grievance council…" #NYCSC
21:45 pm
Cont'd: "…like Safer Spaces suggested, and instead we've spent over 30 minutes catering to wants and needs of this guy here." #NYCSC #OWS
21:45 pm
Cont'd: "Also, the point of friendly amendments is to prevent blocking, so as you keep denying, ppl are going to block." #NYCSC #OWS
21:46 pm
Cont'd: "Also, the way that you are responding to ppl in this room is condescending," "playing to patriarchal roles" he's adopting. #NYCSC
21:49 pm
Robert says that DA is his model in "how a meeting should be run." "They run the best meetings I've seen at #OWS." #NYCSC
21:52 pm
Robert is gonna table the proposal because he wants to get to the train before it shuts down at 10. #NYCSC #OWS
21:52 pm
OK, that's the end of #Spokescouncil. People are salty that Robert just spent an hour of our time and quit before it was over. #NYCSC #OWS