Lyceum of Trees, Annual Meeting 2017, Minutes
February 5, 2017
Lewisville State Park, Battleground, WA
The meeting was called to order shortly after 13:00.
The following were present:
Inge, Colin, Brian, Damianna, Vergil, Sue, Will, Stephanie, Sue Anne, Michelle, Boomer, Michele, Mark, Gyelle, Sonshine, Joy, Arrhiannon, Deedra, and Chris.
Arrhiannon described the reason for the meeting. Lyceum of Trees, being a non-profit corporation, is required to hold at least one annual meeting each year. They are usually held at the same place as this one: Lewisville State Park in Battleground, Washington. On a few occasions, it has been held elsewhere, due to unavailability of the park area or other circumstances.
State of Classes
Classes have been successful this year. A new series started in April of 2016. Four students are taking the class in Gresham, and five are taking the class in Salem. One of the Gresham students is taking the series a second time; all of the rest are new to the series. There is a potential for another series of classes, if Lyceum goes forward.
Board of Directors Status
We haven’t been able to hold as many Board of Directors meetings as we should.
We haven’t had a board meeting since December. The last was canceled due to snow.
Most of our board meetings were held at New Seasons in Tualatin, but our two most recent meetings were held at Panera Bread in Keiser.
Vergil and Gyelle retired from the board in August.
Chris has taken over being Secretary, since Shawn left the board.
Brian is Treasurer, Arrhiannon is Steward, and Michelle and Deedra are the Communications Team.
Several people mentioned wanting to initiate.
State of Our Finances
At present, we have $675.17 in our account. We paid rent in full for both facilities. The amount is $360 per facility, for a total of $720. We donated $240 to Eastrose last year, and we also paid $20 for the ritual held after the January 2017 class. We still need to pay for the post office box and our incorporation. Each of these is $50.
Deedra spoke about the mailing lists. The new Google groups have been set up, though the Yahoo group is still operating. We also have a new Google calendar that she has helped maintain. Deedra struggled with web accessibility over the last year, and she will not be able to continue on the Communications Team.
Michelle talked about the website. She hasn’t been able to do some of the things she had planned, because health issues have limited the things on which she has been able to focus for the last six months.
If we go forward, the site is going to need to be scaled “way way back”. There was talk of tighter integration with Google, as well. Michelle’s health issues have limited what she can focus on during the last 6 months.
We have a Facebook group. If anyone is really good with social media, we’d love your help as an adjunct.
Payment for the domain hosting is also going to need to be made soon. It is around $100.
Questions were asked. What does it mean to be a member of Lyceum?
What is Lyceum, exactly? What is involved in running it?
Lyceum of Trees is a non-profit corporation. It was founded by a group of solitaries so that they could study together, learn from one another, and celebrate together. Education and group ritual are the organization’s main purposes.
We discussed the various officer positions and the duties of each of them.
Our steward is equivalent to a president.
Much of the rest of the discussion is covered in the bylaws.
Retirement of the Elders
All four elders, Gyelle, Vergil, Arrhiannon, and Brian are retiring from their positions with Lyceum of Trees. There is too much work to do, and they can’t do it alone.
Discussion Concerning the Future of Lyceum of Trees
Is it still viable to do everything across the distance of Vancouver to Salem / Monmouth?
Will says: “Lyceum’s main problem has been the mileage”.
Gyelle says: “I was going to suggest having separate north and south esbats”.
The CUUPS group in Salem may be able to do much of what Lyceum does there. It cannot ordain, but it could hold “Year and a Day”-style classes, like those being offered by Lyceum. It could be coordinated with Lyceum’s, so that they go hand in hand.
We segued into a discussion of whether or not Lyceum of Trees should register for 501(C)(3) tax status. Brian said that this is only useful if there are wealthy donors wishing to make large contributions that can be written off for tax purposes. If we want to register as 501(C)(3), it would be best to start a new group, due to the amount of paperwork involved. Other points were raised, such as the ramifications for political speech. Everyone overwhelmingly agreed that we should not register for 501(C)(3) status.
Someone (possibly Joy) says: “Let’s decide whether Lyceum should go forward”.
Comments by others: “Salem needs to be its own entity”, and “It would be healthier for both communities if we split into two autonomous groups”.
Will proposes that we split into two autonomous groups, north and south. After some discussion, Gyelle proposes that Lyceum of Trees pulls back to its original boundaries, so that it is an autonomous group in the Portland / Vancouver metro area.
We took Gyelle’s proposal through the consensus process.
One member says: “I’m in agreement as long as we can work with the Salem group for ordination issues”. Consensus is reached, and everyone agrees that Lyceum of Trees will continue as a Portland / Vancouver Pagan church.
Election of Officers
Gyelle proposes that we suspend the annual meeting until Litha.
There is going to be a transition period. We had a lengthy discussion concerning parallel Boards of Directors. Should we have a transition team and a team that will take over later? This would require us to amend or temporarily suspend the bylaws.
In the end, this was decided to be infeasible. New officers were elected.
Will was nominated and elected for Steward.
Michelle was nominated and elected for Secretary.
She also remains in her current position as Communications Director.
Brian will remain as Treasurer during the transition, and Arrhiannon will remain as Clerical Director until June.
Annual Meeting Suspended
Gyelle proposes that we suspend the annual meeting until Litha, and the proposal is agreed by consensus. The meeting was suspended at approximately 14:40.