Members Area

This section covers our management plan.

PART 1 – General outline of co-op structure and policies

The Davidson Creek Housing Co-operative Ltd. is a 52 unit Townhouse and Community Centre housing co-operative project consisting of 2, 3 and 4 bedroom units located in the Davidson Creek Subdivision in Sherwood Park, Alberta.

1) to provide on a co-operative basis affordable and quality housing and the services and facilities ancillary thereto, to persons, the majority of whom are members of the Association and who will occupy the housing units otherwise than as individual owners.

 

2) to create and encourage in each member a viewpoint of co-operative ownership which shall imply a sense of pride and responsibility not only towards their individual unit and private space but also to the common structures and property.

 

3) to provide on a co-operative basis an opportunity to the members to maintain control over their living environment, through democratic participation and control of all aspects of their housing and the attendant services and facilities.

 

4) to develop on a co-operative basis a community environment which will support human development and growth both as individuals and as members of responsible communities.

 

5) to create an integrated community by striving to maintain 35% of the units occupied by persons who are single
parents and 10% of the units occupied by persons who are mentally and/or physically handicapped.

The following are the , principles under which the Co-operative operates.

 

1. Membership is voluntary and open to those who can use the services of the Co-op, subscribe to the principles and practice of Co-operative organization, and are wilting to assume the responsibilities associated with membership.

 

2. Membership is based on shares. Each adult shall individually be entitled to apply for membership and the
issuance of a share in the applicant’s name shall constitute the granting of individual membership.

 

3. Each member has one vote regardless of the extent of the member’s investment.

 

4. The Board of Directors shall be elected by the general membership to run the day to day operation of the Co-op, and shall remain accountable to the general membership.

 

5. The business of the Co-op shall be carried on for the benefit of the members.

 

6. Provision shall be made for the education of members in the techniques of co-operative operations.

 

7. Provision shall be made for co-operation with other cooperative
associations, at the local, national and international level.

 

8. The business of the Co-op shall be operated as nearly as possible at cost; however, the Co-op may provide its’
services to its’ members on a sliding scale of fees, based upon their financial situation.

 

9. The business of the Association shall be carried on without pecuniary gain to its’ members meaning that:

 

– Any profits or accretions to the Co-op shall be used for the purpose of promoting its objects;

 

– Upon termination of a membership in the Association for any reason, the Association shall, subject to the provisions of the Co-operative Associations Act, purchase all shares of the Association held by the terminating member at par value;

 

– No dividend shall be paid with respect to shares;

 

– If the Association shall be dissolved, any funds remaining to the credit of the Association, after the payment of any debts and liabilities, and the member share capital at par value, shall be donated to another non-profit or charitable corporation or corporations which carry on their work solely in Canada in such proportion as the members of the Association shall decide.

The Co-operative is organized into four broad areas of responsibility: the General Membership, the Board of Directors, Committees, and the individual member. A brief description of the roles and authority each area has follows.

 

General Membership:
The membership as shareholders in a democratic organization have the authority to direct the Co-op subject to the powers and limitations found in the Co-operat{ve Act, Standard By-laws, and the Co-op’s own Memorandum of Association, Supplemental By-laws, Occupancy Agreement and policies. The general policies, goals and direction of the Co-operative are set by the membership at duly called general meetings or by ballot as set out in the By-laws. The general membership may delegate its powers to the Board, a committee or a person; however the body to whom the delegation of responsibility is given is always accountable to the general membership and their delegated powers can be revoked by the general membership.

 

Board of Directors:
The Board of Directors are elected by and from the general membership and are entrusted with the overall management of the Co-operative. Their authority both derives frcim and is limited by the Co-operative Act, Standard By-laws and the Co-op’s Memorandum, Supplemental By-laws, Occupancy Agreement and policies. The Board is responsible to the membership for implementing general policies, ensuring that the day to day affairs of the Co-operative are well managed, approving committee procedures and reviewing policy proposals and budgets prior to presentation to the general membership.

 

Committees:
The committees consist of volunteer members who undertake roles and tasks within the committees’ respective mandates. Each committee has a designated representative who acts as liaison to the Board of Directors. Each committee derives its mandate and authority to carry out its functions from the general membership in the form of goals and policies, and from the Board in the form of approved procedures and direction. Beyond undertaking and executing those functions for they have been mandated the committees are responsible such research and development of policies, structures procedures as would further the goals established for the committee for the general membership.

1) The Board of Directors shall consist of no less than 5 members, who shall include a President, V.P.(Membership), V.P.(Maintenance), Secretary and Treasurer. The members of the Board are elected from and by the general membership.

 

2) The objective of the Board of Directors shall be to ensure that the business of the Co-operative is carried out. The Board of Directors shall be responsible for:
– the day to day operations of the Co-operative
– the supervision of the activities of the Co-operative
– entering into any contracts on behalf of the Cooperative
– ensuring that the following records are developed and maintained:
— a list of Subscribing Members
— a membership list containing the information required by The Co-operative Associations Act including the shares owned by every member of the Co-operative
— the minutes of all General, Annual, and Special meetings of the Association
— the minutes of all meetings of the Board of Directors and any committees of the Board
— a record of all assets and liabilities of the Association
— a record of all monies received by the Association
— a record of all disbursements of funds of the Association.

The signing authority for the Co-operative shall be empowered to the Board of Directors. Two of the signatures are required at all times. Power to use the Seal of the Co-operative and to legally bind the Co-operative may only be done by a special resolution of the Board of Directors and the President, or, in his/her absence, a Vice-President, and the Secretary or whoever else the Board appoints shall have the authority to sign under the Seal of the Co-operative.

In addition to the Board of Directors, there shall be at least the following committees:
1) Finance
2) Maintenance
3) Membership
4) Administration/Secretarial

PART II – Procedure for membership

Membership shall be open to all persons over the age of 18 who are in general agreement with the objects of and can use the services of the Association. Membership in the Association shall not be arbitrarily withheld.

Subject to the foregoing, an application for membership may be rejected by the Board of Directors where, in their opinion, such rejection is in the best interests of the Association.

A person becomes an member of the Association upon complying with the following conditions:
1) Acceptance of his or her application by the Board of Directors.
2) Upon having purchased one or more shares in the Association. Each member shall purchase or shall ensure that his/her household purchases, such number of shares as shall be set out in the By-laws of the Association or such other number as the Association shall determine from time to time.
3) Upon complying with such other terms and conditions as may from time to time be established by the Association

PART III – Standing Committees

Meetings:
The Committees hold general meetings monthly, special meetings may be called as the need arises.

 

Delegation of Responsibility:
Beyond the positions of Chairperson and Secretary, the respective Committee’s responsibilities listed in the objectives, are distributed amongst the members by process of mutual agreement.

 

Chairperson:
elected by the committee or appointed by the Board, and ratified by the general membership; prepares agendas, calls and chairs Committee meetings; together with the Board Liaison Person authorizes
committee expenditures.

 

Board Liaison Person:
elected to the Board of Directors by the general membership, ex-officio member of the committee; together with the Chair authorizes committee expenditures; together with the Chair prepares and presents Committee reports to Board and General Membership.

 

Secretary:
selected from amongst Committee members; records, distributes and files minutes of Committee meetings; ex-officio member of the Secretarial Committee.
While the duties if either the Chair or the Secretary may be delegated to other members of the committee, the ultimate responsibility for ensuring that these duties are carried out remains with the titled positions.

1. At the request of the general membership, and/or the Board of Directors, the committee will undertake to examine matters pertaining to the management of the Co-operative and make policy and procedural recommendations on the basis of their research. The committee may also initiate its own research.

 

2. All policies require the approval of the general Membership prior to implementation. Prior to presentation to the general membership for approval, policy proposals must be presented to the Board for review.

 

3. All procedures require the approval of the Board of Directors prior to implementation.

 

4. Each committee shall be responsible for developing a budget and receiving general membership approval for its budget.

 

5. Each committee shall develop and present to the general membership for its approval a mandate, which shall state its areas of responsibility and control. The power to make decisions and undertake
activities required to achieve its objectives shall be as set out in the committee’s mandate, the committee’s approved procedures and any policies which relate to the committee’s activities.

Detailed job description of all titled positions:

1. Goals

 

To develop and maintain a full complement of informed and participating members.

 

To create and maintain a stable, well developed co-operative community.

 

To promote the principles of co-operative living.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities
a) To maintain a full complement of members, as well as a waiting list of applicants.

 

b) To process, distribute, collect, evaluate, submit recommendations to the Board for approval, and file all applications to the co-op for membership.

 

c) To ensure that all documents such as income verification, occupancy agreements, move-in/move-out forms, etc., are duly completed, signed, submitted and filed.

 

d) To keep an updated file on each applicant, and member which will include application dates, records of mailings, member standing in the co-op, all original forms and all general data. The information contained therein will be kept confidential unless otherwise agreed to by the party in question.

 

e) To keep an updated internal and external waiting list which will be accessible to all members and prospective members, and to co-ordinate the allocation of units to the individuals on the lists.

 

f) To keep prospective members informed of relevant co-op business, policy changes, meetings and their position on the waiting list. Where appropriate they will receive mailings of newsletters, notices and minutes of general meetings. Also, the committee will keep itself informed of changes in prospective member’s address, phone numbers and housing needs.

 

g) To form a link with the community. The aim is to foster good community relations through good neighbour policies and the distribution of educational materials, thus integrating the co-op into the community.

 

h) To develop and maintain a member handbook that will include: copies of all documents pertaining to the formation of the co-op, such as the Co-operative Associations Act, Standard By-laws, Articles of Association, Supplemental By-laws, statements of policies, maintenance regulations and schedules, maintenance manuals, etc. In addition, the handbook will include the co-op principles, a historical outline and a member directory.

 

i) To gather and distribute educational materials, as well as organize workshops as they become necessary for members and prospective members.

 

j) To monitor and promote member participation. The monitoring function shall be primarily used as a means of determining what problems members are experiencing which are preventing or inhibiting their participation. The promotional aspect shall be dealt with by eliminating factors which discourage participation as well as by creating incentives such as the provision of courses and workshops for those who are participating so that they may acquire new knowledge and skills.

 

k) To keep an up-to-date statement of policies and by-laws as well as a file of all policy and bylaw statements.

 

1) To refer all infractions of policy to the Board of Directors and carry out the Board’s directions.

 

m) To develop rational and enforceable policies that are of a participatory nature and promote self-management and the co-operative principles.

 

n) To ensure that the co-operative principle of provision of education is adhered to by developing and maintaining an education program and budget.

1. Goals

 

To protect and maintain, in the best form possible, the residential units and the surrounding area. The philosophy is that members shall do as much work as possible for the upkeep of grounds and units.

 

To create and encourage in each member a viewpoint of cooperative ownership which shall imply a sense of pride and responsibility not only towards their individual unitand private space but also to the common structures and property.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) To develop policies that will promote the upkeep of land and buildings owned by the Co- operative.

 

b) To develop maintenance handbooks outlining individual household responsibilities toward the maintenance andpreservation of the units.

 

c) To develop work programs for major and minor repairs (i.e. work parties, volunteer roster system, etc.)

 

d) To form an education pool of skilled members sharing and demonstrating knowledge.

 

e) To purchase tools and equipment as necessary.

 

f) To approve and co-ordinate major improvements made by households to the units.

 

g) To carry out yearly inspections of buildings, including move-in/move out inspections as necessary.

 

h) To assist the Board of Directors in the supervision of the maintenance staff.

1) Goals

 

To develop an effective and accurate method for storage and retrieval of records and documents pertaining to the co-operative.

 

To promote an effective communications system within the co-operative.

 

To operate and maintain an efficient office function.

 

2) Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) To update and maintain -the records and documents of the co-operative.

 

b) To operate and manage the housing co-ops office.

 

c) To facilitate inter-committee and general membership communication.

 

d) To publish and oversee the production of an in-house Newsletter.

 

e) To assist the administrative staff in the area of records keeping and communications.

 

f) To assist the Board of Directors in the supervision of the administrative staff.

1. Goals

 

To ensure effective, efficient management of the Coop’s finances by overseeing the financial operation and working in close co-operation with the Treasurer, and the Board Auditor.

 

To ensure that the financial affairs of the Co-op are conducted in a manner which ensures both financial solvency, and provides for the attainment of the goals of the Co-operative as stated in the Memorandum of Association.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) to record and control all financial transactions in accordance with generally accepted accounting procedures;

 

b) to establish and maintain internal fiscal control mechanisms.

 

c) to administer all financial resources of the cooperative so as to maximize benefits to the membership

 

d) to report financial information on a timely basis to the membership and outside parties as required;

 

e) to formulate financial policy and recommend these to the general membership for approval;

 

f) to verify member’s income’s and collect monthly housing charges;

 

g) to assist other committees in budget preparation;

 

h) to keep an updated share register for the Co-op;

 

i) to educate new members as to how the co-operative financial mechanism operates.

1) Goals

 

To acquire the knowledge and skills required to carry out the duties and responsibilities assigned.

 

To carry out the duties and responsibilities assigned to the best of their abilities.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) Ensure information and minutes are kept accurately.

 

b) Give full attention to task of the meeting and to the ideas of fellow board members.

 

c) Keep an open mind to new ideas and comments of others and provide and accept constructive criticism as necessary.

 

d) Make every attempt to attend board meetings.

 

e) Be punctual, attentive and perceptive.

 

f) Arrive well informed, having read the agenda and any information packages distributed concerning the issues to be discussed.

 

g) Contribute to the discussions, being both clear and easily understood.

 

h) Although formal procedures are not required, some degree of formality will make meetings run more efficiently.

 

i) Remember decisions are made on behalf of the entire membership.

 

j) Board solidarity is important, a decision made by majority vote must be supported.

 

k) Personal data on co-op members learned or acquired through doing board business is to be held in strictest confidence.

 

1) Inform Chair or secretary if unable to attend meetings.

1. Goals

 

To ensure that the Co-operative’s financial viability, both short term and long term, remains secure.

 

To ensure that the actions, policies and procedures of the Co-operative always further the goals of the Co-operative.

 

To ensure that the Co-operative operates in accordance with the spirit of the Co-operative Principles.

 

To strive to achieve a balance in the Co-operatives actions, policies and procedures between ensuring that the personal freedom of the Co-operative’s members are respected and ensuring that the interests of the entire group are protected.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) Ensure that the day to day business of the co-operative is carried out according to the law and policies of the co-operative.

 

b) Enter into contracts on behalf of the co-operative.

 

c) Ensure that the appropriate records are kept for the co-operative.

 

d) Act honestly at all times when dealing with or on behalf of the co-operative.

 

e) To act in the best interests of the co-operative as a whole.

 

f) To exercise the greatest care, skill and judgement on behalf of the co-operative.

 

g) Should become fully aware of the obligations of the position.

 

h) Must be able to devote the time necessary to fulfill all responsibilities.

 

i) Be an active participant in the decision making process.

 

j) Avoid all conflicts of interest; where such might exist they must be declared to the Board.

 

k) Board members must be bondable.

 

1) Board members can be held liable for their actions, therefore the position must be taken seriously.

 

m) Ultimately responsible for ensuring that policies and procedures are followed.

 

n) Act as liaison between committees and board.

 

o) Must be familiar with and understand generally contents of bylaws, occupancy agreement, contracts and co-op policy.

1. Goals

 

To ensure that the activities of each of the Board members and the committees are co-ordinated.

 

To ensure that the goals of each of the Board members and their respective committees are being achieved and that their duties and responsibilities are being carried out.

 

To ensure that the goals of the Board are being achieved.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) Unless someone else is designated to do so shall chair at all meetings of the Association and at meetings of the Directors.

 

b) Calls general membership meetings and Board meetings.

 

c) If no other person is authorized to do so by resolution of the Board of Directors, or if the person so authorized is unable to do so, the President shall, with the Secretary or Treasurer:

 

(i) sign, execute, and deliver all deeds or conveyances of personal or real estate, all agreements for sale or purchase of land, all mortgages, leases and other legal documents which the Directors may order executed and shall sign all certificates of allotment of shares or membership certificates that are approved by the Directors.

 

(ii) authenticate by his/her signature the seal of the Association, and countersign all cheques, notes, bill of exchange and other financial documents signed by the Treasurer on behalf of the Association.

 

d) Shall submit to the annual general meeting of the association, the Board of Directors’ annual report of the affairs of the association.

 

e) Operates in accordance to the requirements of members of the Board.

 

N.B. The President need not be absolutely knowledgeable in all areas of the Co-operative. The key role played by the President is to know who does what in the Co-op and to send people to them rather than be directly involved in the resolution of the problem or request. The skills most needed are in knowing how to co-ordinate people and tasks, how to motivate people, how to smooth over personality conflicts, and how to be general troubleshooter.

1. Goals

 

To ensure that the goals of the Maintenance Committee are reflected in the actions, policies and procedures of the Committee and that these goals are being achieved.

 

To ensure that the goals of the Board are being achieved.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) Where the President is absent or unable to act, either the Vice-President (Membership) or the Vice-President (Maintenance) in that order shall discharge the duties of the President.

 

b) The duties of the Vice-President(Maintenance) shall be determined by resolution of the Board of Directors. These shall include:

 

(i) acting as a liaison between the Board of Directors and the Maintenance Committee;

 

(ii) knowing what the Association’s policies are in the area of maintenance and ensuring that they are adhered to;

 

(iii) reviewing maintenance policy as needed and working with the Maintenance Committee to keep policy updated and workable.

 

c) Acts as official liaison to the General Membership, presenting reports and recommendations and answering questions on behalf of the Maintenance Committee.

 

d) Where no other person is designated as Chair, or when the Chair is absent, shall act as Chair at committee meetings.

 

e) Is ultimately responsible for ensuring that the goals of the Maintenance Committee are achieved.

1. Goals

 

To ensure that the goals of the Membership Committee are reflected in the actions, policies and procedures of the Committee and that these goals are being achieved.

 

To ensure that the goals of the Board are being achieved.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) Where the President is absent or unable to act, either the Vice-President (Membership) or the Vice-President (Maintenance) in that order shall discharge the duties of the President.

 

b) The duties of the Vice-President(Membership) shall be determined by resolution of the Board of Directors. These shall include:

 

(i) acting as a liaison between the Board of Directors and the Membership Committee;

 

(ii) knowing what the Association’s policies are the in area of membership and ensuring that they are adhered to;

 

(iii) reviewing membership policy as needed and working with the Membership Committee to keep policy updated and workable.

 

c) Acts – as official liaison to the General Membership, presenting reports and recommendations and answering questions on behalf of the Membership Committee.

 

d) Where no other person is designated as Chair, or when the Chair is absent, shall act as Chair at committee meetings.

 

e) Is ultimately responsible for ensuring that the goals of the Membership Committee are achieved.

1. Goals

 

To ensure that the goals of the Finance Committee are reflected in the actions, policies and procedures of the Committee and that these goals are being achieved.

 

To ensure that the goals of the Board are being achieved.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) If no other person is authorized to do so by resolution of the Board of Directors, or if the person so authorized is unable to do so, the Treasurer shall:

 

(i) receive and deposit in whatever credit union, chartered bank, treasury branch, or other place of safe keeping the Board of Directors may designate, all monies paid to the Association, and shall issue receipts therefore …

 

(ii) with the President or any other person appointed for the purpose, sign all cheques, notes, bills of exchange and other documents necessary to carry on the business of the Association.

 

(iii) be responsible for the keeping of a proper set of books, showing accurately the dealings of the Association, and shall present a full and detailed account of the receipts and disbursements to the Board of Directors whenever requested by them, and shall prepare for submission to the annual general meeting of the Association, a complete statement of its financial position.

 

b) Other duties of the Treasurer shall be determined by resolution of the Board of Directors. These shall include:

 

(i) acting as a liaison between the Board of Directors and the Finance Committee;

 

(ii) knowing what the Association’s policies are in the area of finance and ensuring that they are adhered to;

 

(iii) reviewing finance policy as needed and working with the Finance Committee to ensure that policy is kept up to date and workable.

 

c) Acts as official liaison to the General Membership, presenting reports and recommendations and answering questions on behalf of the Finance Committee.

 

d) Where no other person is designated as Chair, or when the Chair is absent, shall act as Chair at committee meetings.

 

e) Is ultimately responsible for ensuring that the goals of the Finance Committee are achieved.

1. Goals

 

To ensure that the goals of the Committee are reflected in the actions, policies and procedures of the Committee and that these goals are being achieved.

 

To ensure that the duties and responsibilities of the committee are being fulfilled.

 

To co-ordinate the operations of the committee and ensure that they are running smoothly.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) Call meetings when necessary and ensure all committee members are informed of meeting.

 

b) Direct and conduct the meeting.

 

c) Follow the agenda as set out.

 

d) Keep discussion on topic.

 

e) Make sure clear decisions are ·reached.

 

f) Make sure minutes are kept by secretary, or assign someone to do the task when secretary absent.

 

g) Help committee make effective decisions by making sure adequate and accurate information is available for each item.

 

h) Conduct meeting ensuring everyone has chance to speak to the issues.

 

i) Ensure new committee members have been adequately prepared for their role on the committee.

 

j) Do follow-up to meetings: contact members who missed meetings, follow-up on tasks assigned between meetings, when necessary.

 

k) Ensure new members are recruited as necessary to keep committee at adequate size.

 

1) Makes representation to the Board on behalf of the committee.

 

m) Represent committee in meetings with other groups.

 

n) Ensure jobs and responsibilities are divided equitably, taking into consideration the special abilities of committee members.

 

o) Set objectives for committee and make sure they are clearly stated and agreed upon.

1. Goals

 

To develop and implement an effective and accurate method for storage and retrieval of records and documents pertaining to the Committee.

 

To promote an effective communications system within the Committee and between the Committee and the other committees.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) To document what goes on in committee meetings.

 

b) To teach others how to record information.

 

c) Be responsible for the proper storage and safety of documents.

 

d) To sit on the Secretarial Committee.

 

e) Give notice of meetings as directed by the chairman.

 

f) Create agenda in consultation with chair and other committee members.

 

g) Send out agenda in advance of committee meetings.

 

h) Do minutes of all committee meetings.

 

i) Do general correspondence for committee.

 

j) Do reminders of meetings – by phone calls or notes.

 

k) Be responsible for integrating new members into committee structure. i.e. give them info about committee structure and projects that they are involved in.

1) Goals

 

To acquire the knowledge and skills required to carry out the duties and responsibilities assigned.

 

To carry out the duties and responsibilities assigned to the best of their abilities.

 

2. Duties and Responsibilities

 

a) Ensure information and minutes are kept accurately.

 

b) Give full attention to task of the meeting and to the ideas of fellow committee members.

 

c) Keep an open mind to new ideas and comments of others and provide and accept constructive criticism as necessary.

 

d) Make every attempt to attend committee meetings.

 

e) Be punctual, attentive and perceptive.

 

f) Arrive well informed, having read the agenda and any information packages distributed concerning the issues to be discussed.

 

g) Contribute to the discussions, being both clear and easily understood.

h) Although formal procedures are not required, some degree of formality will make meetings run more efficiently.

 

i) Remember decisions are made on behalf of the entire membership.

 

j) Committee solidarity is important, a decision made by majority vote must be supported.

 

k) Personal data on co-op members learned or acquired through doing committee business is to be held in strictest confidence.

 

1) Inform Chair or secretary if unable to attend meetings.

 

Our Gallery

Take a peek inside Davidson Creek