Cooperative Meetings

Meetings are an essential part of ensuring good cooperative governance. The cooperative ACT 153sets the rules for meetings but there are some parts of the law that coop can change in their own by-law. This is because the COSO Act was designed to be flexible to accommodate the needs of coop. Sometimes holding meetings can be very difficult for coops in remote parts of Vanuatu, especially if members are located in a very isolated area.

There are two main types of meetings:
• General meetings—open to all members of a coop
• Board meetings—for the board members only.
General meetings
General meetings are open to all members of a cooperative. All the people on the current register of members can attend.
A new coop must hold a general meeting within three months of registration. After that time a coop must hold a general meeting every year within five months after the end of the financial year. This meeting is called the annual general meeting (AGM).

Annual general meetings
The AGM is an important meeting held once a year to allow the board to formally provide the members with information of what has happened over the last 12 months. This includes giving the members reports and financial information.
Has your cooperative held its AGM yet? The COSO Act says that the AGM must be held before the end of each year.
An AGM, just like any other meeting, will flow much better if it is properly planned and if certain rules and procedures are followed.
You should check your coop by-law for rules about your AGM and the business to be conducted at the meeting.

Board's meetings
The meetings of board are where decisions about the business of the coop are made. Coops need to set out in their by-law how often their board meetings will be held. ORCBDS recommends that board meet at least every three months.
Tuesday 11 December 2018