Difference between revisions of "Event:2019/09/05 Delegates"

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Latest revision as of 10:58, 8 October 2019

Omni Delegates' Meeting - Thursday September 5, 2019 7pm-9pm

for instructions on preparing and archiving these notes, please see the bottom


  • Introductions [15 minutes]
    • Meeting Roles
    • Delegates Count
    • Access Check-in
  • Check-ins, Updates & Report-Backs [30 minutes]
    • Brief Announcements
    • Working Groups
    • Member Collectives
    • Conflicts, Mediation & Safe Space
  • Proposals & Discussions


Introduce yourself: Name; Preferred Pronoun; Affiliation; any brief announcements; say whether you're a delegate; let us know about any access needs you have

  • WHY DO WE ASK PRONOUNS? To make space for people who are trans, nonbinary, gender noncomforming or otherwise vulnerable to being misgendered. It's not an invitation to make jokes or trivialize the idea of pronouns. If you are fine with the gender and pronouns society generally assigns to you, please just say what they are without fanfare or embellishment. Conversely, please don't pressure anybody to give their pronouns, as that can harm trans people who are closeted or questioning. The point is to prompt and normalize asking, but not to mandate or enforce. Thank you! <3 Yar
  • Marcus - he/him
  • Phil - he/him - FNB
  • Lukas - he/him - SPAZ
  • jenny - she/her - sudo room member and wg member
  • Joe - he/him - Commons/FNB
  • Marc - he/him - sudo / CCL
  • Dennis - he/him - LibLens
  • Robb - he/him - LibLens
  • Jane - GWS - she/her
  • Rachel she/her global women's strike
  • Mary-anne she/her chiapas support committee
  • Roberto - he/him - Chiapas
  • Ken - ? - CCL
  • Laura remote

Access Check In

Is everybody able to participate fully in this meeting? Do people have unmet needs or concerns?

Meeting Roles

  • Facilitator/s: Marcus
  • Explanation of hand signals: "deaf applause", "raised hand", "point of process", "direct response"(wildcard), etc.
  • Stacktaker: Phil
  • Timekeeper: Yar
  • Notetaker/s: Jenny and Marc
  • Vibe Reader: Joe
  • Who will send out next meeting's agenda beforehand:
  • Next meeting's facilitator(s): Phil


  • CCL: Ken
  • CSC: Mary Ann
  • FNB: Joe
  • FYE: Jenny standing in for FYE since delegate is sick
  • GWS: Rachel
  • LL: Dennis
  • Phat Beets: mylan outside
  • Sudo: Yar
  • Quorum: yes

Brief Announcements

  • Mary-Ann: I would like to have a discussion about what it means for a collective to sponsor an outside group
    • Joe: I think that would be a good discussion if we have time for it.

Working Group Report-Backs

Building & permits

  • yar: The bathroom will be finished in the next month, I promise. The kitchen we've been finding it hard to schedule meeting but we're gonna keep trying. We're looking for a general contractor to hire, or at least partially in that role, that's the biggest thing before is right now.
    • jenny: are we having a meeting on saturday
    • yar: if enough people reply, so far only mylan has replied saying not
    • jenny: i can
    • joe: a question: do we have a program for the project: waht we want to do and how are we gonna meet those needs? do we have a list of the needs of everyone who's going to use the kitchen so we can be sure the kitchen meets the needs of everyone.
    • yar: the best thing people can do for the project right now is for people to check their emails because i keep sending emails
    • jenny: if anyone knows anyone who plans to use the kitchen please reach out to them so we can talk to all the stakeholders
    • marcus: is there an estimated time?
      • yar: no


  • Meetings: 2nd & 4th Mondays at 5pm
  • https://omnicommons.org/lists/listinfo/booking
  • SPAZ and related events issues
    • Joe: having new folks willing to join, considering making the meeting later to accommodate new folks
    • Roberto: Best at 5 or 6 - we've talked about ways to incentivize collectives to participate in Commons WG
  • Is GCEA continuing to meet in the small classroom?
  • joe: Our last meeting was pretty good. We're trying to deal with the issue of sponsorship and in relation to that Lucas is going to be our newest member and he has a hard time getting there for the meeting at 5 pm so we're gonna try to change that to 6 pm if that's ok with robb and ? (other wg member)

the requests are pouring in! sierk is considering becoming a member! even though i've made some mistakes recently i feel like i'm getting better

    • robb: i can't make 6 pm because that's when finance meets
    • lucas: i can meet at 5 pm next time but it depends when i get out of work going forward
    • jenny: it used to work out because several people are in both groups so you can go from one meeting directly to the other but we've also lost some people. we could be doing more than we're currently doing and 50% of omni's incoming is events and July we only brought in ~$1500 but it got back up in august. Also the process needs improvement: We've explored professional systems since our current system is two wordpress instances + two mailing lists. We're looking to potentially invest in a more sustainable and organized booking system process so if anyone has thoughts or ideas for the process. The next meeting is this monday at 5 pm.
      • ken: is the low income just because of the time of year?
        • jenny: yes, the slump is expects and normal (both slump in requests and volunteer energy) but we could be (i hate to say it) capitalizing on the fact that there are slumps in summer and winter and that there are groups that create their families during those times and create their space
          • yar: what if the commons wg meets after finance?
            • robb: that's when liberated lens meets (
              • roberto: yeah that'd make it difficult for me?
                • jenny: maybe we should just move finance?
                  • roberto: when's the best time for you (lucas)
                  • lucas: 6 or 7, just later i can make it
    • roberto: we need help. figuring out how to get representatives to the commons working group. we were lucky that the summer was low but events are picking up. we've been looking at diff event management systems.

Finance & Fundraising

  • jenny: we're doing okay. in terms of accounting overall i have personally just started doing more receipt tracking because that's a new feature in quickbooks online that integrates with our phones so we can just take pics of receipts and match them to transactions. 2018 is pretty close to cleaned up and we'll be submitting our late taxes on time by mid-october. i guess there was that slump with event income in july, also just a slump in general of any sort of grant writing or fundraising endavours. there are things we could imrpove with communications like writing blogposts and social media. but i'll be the first to admit i haven't been around for a lot of finance meeting this summer. with regards to the kitchen project which is our biggest capital expense coming up we need to raise around $70k for that to be viable. we need to clean up our books to be ready for a potential audit to prepare for re-financing our mortgage. maybe one or two campaigns where people are really excited could really catalyze things around finance
    • we get like $75/mo from Patreon
    • joe: just wondering on if referring to the proposal we're talking about later if this would be the point in the meeting where we'd be informed about whether any collectives are struggling
      • jenny: total amount of overdue invoices under $2k. at some point ~1 year ago i think it was around $20k. we've done a got job of chasing down overdues and seeing where people are at. i missed the discussion around phat beets and we were discussing reducing their rent and kinda dealing with some of those overdues but i don't think overdues are a big issue right now. i think our biggest issue is that we're not spending time on fundraising because some of our most talented people are already doing other things.
        • joe: but if some of the collectives were in trouble you would announce it here. not just send an email.

Member Collective Updates

What is going on with your collective? What are you working on? What have you accomplished? Any events coming up? Any difficulties you are encountering that you need help with?


  • ken: we have actually to my way of thinking the coolest update is that we just got two freeze driers in ccl which we're expecting to share at least one of them with the kitchen. they're not massively big but they are definitely good ones. we need to sterilize them and then they're ready to use. supposedly within the next two weeks. we have classes online. we do have a new event but we'll post it.


  • mary-anne: we had our community art festival on the 17th of august and it was very successful and i want to thank all of the members from omni who attended and also helped out. i think one of the big diffs this year is that we had vendors. this was our fourth annual community art festival and next year will be our fith. so thank you to everyone who was there and who helped we really appreciated it.


  • joe: we got a grant for a new truck, we're waiting for the money to actually be sepndable. we have an insurance hurdle. we had an old old member come back and help us out. the climate summit is happening at the end of september and we'll be out htere giving out goodies and keeping the kids happy.


  • jenny (standing in): i don't know if anyone's been in the basement recently but it looks amazing. they had their first open house last month and lots of artmaking and collective mural painting. trying to remember from AB(sp?)'s proposal: i think they were asking for a slight de-crease in rent and paid all at once for september october november.
    • robb: they wanted it reduced to $300
      • jenny: ? $300 then increasing to $350 ? (notetaker unsure)
  • jenny told the person who was suposed to be at this meeting from FYE to go home as he was sick and that she would try to stand in for them
  • jenny: anyone who wants to discuss this rent reduction? otherwise an issue
  • joe: When running out of space of spaces for booking, wondering the status of basement spaces for that part of the basement - is that space rentable / can be made available
  • yar: on the subject of FYE. it was 3 months ago that they were accepted as trial members so should we discuss?
    • joe - has no meaning as a trial until we comment
    • phil: would be beneficial to do something more timely to the collective?
    • marc: falls in same area as deciding to approve/decline new collectives - generally done without them present
      • yar: should continue discussion in proposals section is all


  • rachel: we were actually pretty low-key in august - kinda closed down. involved in saving the redstone building in SF. Mission Community Development is trying to buy the building - don't know what's going to happen - as yet unknown, not clear what's going to happen at this point
    • jenny: i thought they were buying it
      • rachel: yeah but the funding is like millions of dollars. not sure what's gonna happen at this point
  • jane: participating in a poor peoples campaign roundtable with barbara lee - pushing forward for funding for women and children
    • jane: the youth artworks are gonna have a tiny homes for youth (workshop?) this sunday


  • dennis: at our last meeting i mentioned that we were gonna do a video production workshop with another collective because one of the members of that group had a death, not in the family, but who's related to him. so we haven't rescheduled it but we intend to do that so we'll still ahve the workshop in the near future hopefully. we've also been request to do a video promo piece for phat beets so that may be coming up. a few of us have volunteered to do some video work for the Soil Not Oil conference next week which they have every year now in SF.

Phat Beets

  • mylan: we are working with FYE to throw their first fundraiser and our first fundraiser. it's gonna be a youth performance art kinda showcase so we're excited about that. we're gonna meet this week and see who's interested. lasst week i submitted our first grant application so i'm proud of that. for us it's been a learning curve of doing a lot with a little


  • yar: sudo mesh has finally secured this very discounted rate for mobile 4G hotspots which we plan to deploy at homeless encampments and other off-grid locations that need connectivity. we're excited and if people know about groups that could use this please talk to us.
  • Marc: We have a new laser cutter that creates a foul smell. We are trying to create an ventillation sys but it is not performing that well. Laser cutter will be taken offline until it can be upgraded. Sorry for the smell.

Conflicts, Mediation & Safe Space

  • Updates for any ongoing issues
  • Has anybody been asked to leave? asked to leave


WG Membership

Helen sent to consensus Thu 4/18, briefly discussed Thu 6/6, longer discussion 8/15

Proposal: Members of all working groups must adhere to high levels of honesty and responsibility. When there is any evidence that a member has not met these high standards, the matter must be brought before the Delegates Assembly. Individuals can remain on the working group only with "consensus - 1" of the delegates. (Individuals will be removed from the group unless all but one of the delegates agree that they can continue.) Proposals to remove a working group member go through the usual consultation process, with the individual in question having the right to appear at a delegates' meeting to answer any concerns before any action is taken.

Note that a proposal to remove a member does not require consensus - "consensus -1" is required for a member to remain on the working group.

Straw Poll

  • unanimous


  • Laura: I thought this was going to be modified to apply to all working groups.
    • yar: yes that's correct. (robb modifying the text)
  • joe: i'm totally in favor as a member of the commons working group
  • yar: sudo room is also in favor (for all working groups)
  • marcus: straw poll of who is in favor of delagates: all are in favor
    • marcus: ok now we vote:
      • in favor: sudo, fnb, liblens, gws, csc, ccl, pb
      • abstain: none
      • block: none

lease agreement proposal

From Helen from April (latest August 28th version):

A collective may find itself in financial difficulties. If a collective cannot meet its rent because of a cash-flow problem or some other glitch, it should work out the problem with the finance committee.

But a deeper problem may require a collective to change the terms of its lease or fiscal sponsorship. This could be a financial problem, or it could be some other issue such as the collective's use of its space. If a collective needs to change the terms of any part of its lease it must come to the Delegates' Assembly with a proposal for new terms within one month. Even if the collective is unable to pay its rent, it retains full membership in the Omni for three months, as long as a solution to the problem is being negotiated in good faith.

The three-month clock starts ticking as soon as the collective comes to a Delegates' Assembly, or fails to meet the terms of its agreement, whichever comes first.

It is the responsibility of a collective with a problem to bring it to the Delegates' Assembly.

The delegates must prioritize finding a way to retain a current member collective. https://omnicommons.org/pipermail/consensus/2019-August/001822.html


  • yar: sudo room talked about this and is for this proposal
    • but it's omni, not OMNI
  • joe: I do agree with it, little confused by the beginning of the process - talk to finance committee, then bring changes to delegates within one month
    • mary ann: my understanding from talking to helen, is that if that's a simple problem they just go to the finance committe - but if it involves a different arrangement or change of space agreement, then it needs to go to the delegates
      • mylan: that's how it made sense to me
        • joe: maps to jenny's point that fye's $50 change in rent could go through finance, but significant changes in contribution or use of space needs to go through delegates
  • marcus: do people feel like we're ready to make a vote tonight
    • agree: fnb, sudo, ccl, csc, pb, liblens, gws
    • abstain: none
    • block: none

omni officers

  • jenny: we're a non-profit and as such we need to have a president a treasurer and a secretary. it's been on there for months without any action/motivation other than me and laura poking people. please bring back to your collectives that we need some folks for these positions. these are largely representational (you don't need to do much).
    • yar: last night i asked at the sudo room meeting and marc and dante said they'd be willing to be officers.
  • Laura: Is Roberto still willing to take an officer-elect position?
    • Also, I would like these positions to not just be figureheads. There is stuff that needs to be done that isnt getting done that falls in the purview of the various officer positions.
      • yar: it's 8:37. i propose that we talk about helen's proposal.
        • marcus: moving us to helen's proposal (joe reading the proposal aloud)

FYE Permanent Membership Proposal

Sent to Consensus 9/2:

Greetings fellow Omni Commoners,

Our 3-month trial/integration period comes to an end, successfully accomplishing our goals and fulfilling our commitments for such - the office #8 is renovated and the Media Lab activated. We also organised a first community event and a collaborative art mural, with great turn out.

We are extremely grateful and optimistic for the future. We genuinely thank every Omni individual who has welcomed/assisted and collaborated with us thus far. We hope our presence is appreciate by as many as possible and our involvement with Omni grow with time.

As i (AB), founder and leader of the FYE Collective, have been out of town and with family for the past 3-4 weeks (returning the 5th and hopefully attending the delegates meeting), the rest of the collective has not been as engaged in Omni affaires - for that we apologise. Upon my return we will be shifting gears and truly anchoring our presence and engagement at/with Omni.

In light of the upcoming delegate meeting this Thursday Sept. 5th, which also marks the end of our trial/integration period, we have a few requests:

1) In our initial proposal/application to join Omni, we offered to pay $350-400 in rent for our private office space in the basement. We propose/request an adjustment of our rent sum to $300/month, paid upfront for the next 4 months ($1200 total for Sept. 15th 2019 - January 15th 2020). After that 'Activation Phase' period we are willing to readjust back to our initial proposal of $350-$400, as we will be fully functional and financially stable by then.

2) In this light - we request a 10-day grace period (Sept. 5th-15th) in which we will solidify our internal collective commitments and gather our finances for a $1200 upfront payment.

We would like to know if this plan and financial arrangement may be accepted by Omni. We also would like to know what method of payment is preferred by Omni Finance Group.

Thank you for your time in reading this and considering our proposal.

Looking forward to the future and beyond.

With love,

AB / FYE Collective


  • Joe: AB says he is founder/leader - makes them sort of a noncollective. other concern expressed is that people stay in that office all night and we don't know what's happening on the other side of the curtain
  • jenny: dk talked to them about it and the response was the multiple all-nighters have been pulled but no-one has slept there.
  • phil: we were discussing earlier a kinda of conflict of style where the office is kinda the break room where the work is more done in the outer area of the space. seems sorta natural. difference in style is respected but sleeping overnight is a big issue that we have to discuss.
  • yar: just to be clear, what is the total amount of money that money looses.
    • jenny: like $450 bucks.
      • robb: I still think we should extend their extended grace period an have the discussion when they're here. i think we should get some face to face commitments and talk to them.
      • Laura - I agree with RObb that we should talk to them directly. They haven't attended this meeting much - only AB.
      • Call for moving this to next Delegate's Meeting:
  • Ken: Is this okay with treasurer?
    • Jenny: $150/month? is okay
    • Laura: they are only asking to reduce rent to $300/month from $350-400. Then increase after 4 mos
  • Marc: someone to check on them not sleeping there?
    • Mylan: puts you in a cop position - doesn't build trust - building that trust rather than more conflict is important
      • robb: also we already have a key to every room
        • yar: when nobody's in the room they could just leave the curtain cracked a notch
      • ken: do agree with the trust issue, but sometimes we have to make the space available for authorities etc to get in
      • joe: calling the question to put this off til the 19th
  • 5/9 delegates agree via back-of-the-napkin
  • punting this to next meeting: joe, rachel, dennis,
    • dennis: i have a concern: it seems like there's an issue that i'm not clear on and i'd like to know what it is before i vote. because some people are saying "no i'm not going to raise my hand on this" i want some clarity on what the issue is.
      • mary-anne: I always thought that once the trial period was over it was automatic that they become members. do we have to vote on this now? if they become members?
      • Laura: They are proposing a different financial agreement
      • Rachel: I'm fine with waiting.
      • marcus: any other concerns that people want to bring up
      • jenny: this is a specific request for an extension of their trial period.

(some repetition of the changes in how much they're proposing to pay - from $350-400/mo to $300/mo for the next 4 months)

      • yar: are there any further concerns?
        • robb: only concern is that they should come to delegates meetings every once in awhile
  • marcus: people who disagree with extending trial period until next meeting
    • abstentions: sudo - yes: fnb, gws, csc, ccl, pb, liblens
  • rachel: does it impact them waiting two weeks?
  • joe: no one has any feelings strong enough to prevent them from doing what they will do
  • yar: those who expect FYE will become a full member in two weeks: unanimous
  • Laura: Talk to your coleectives about the rent reduction.


  • Mary Ann: Clarification of Omni's policy regarding sponsoring a group to use common space at the Omni for free - on a number of occasions groups have come to us asking us to sponsor their use of the ballroom. I've felt that's wrong and have rejected it - some have asked to pay us so they can use it cheaper.
  • Ken: bit about abuse of space by spaz parties
  • joe: policy has never been free use of space - stewardship by that collective to make sure it goes well. not free. not unsupervised.
  • yar: always thought it was mostly about insurance (re: sponsorship) - also about each according to ability to each according to their need. pay if you can. not if you can't...
  • Laura: Commons WG should update the written policy on member collective events about this to clarify
  • Lucas: We originally came in as a sudo room sponsored event. That was for the liability i think and we were splitting money. There was long collaboration between spaz and sudo room and membership overlap. I just want to be a point person. I think we're weorking these things out and coming to agreements and if there isn't a super clear thing of what sponsorship means: For me the only thing it means that the other party doesn't need to get their own liability/event insurance. For me that the only solid thing other than this ambiguous thing about members participating because there's always sudo room members at our events.

Last Meeting Notes


End of Meeting