Letter to the editor (4/24/14)
The importance of attendance
Many questions have been raised about this (Socorro Electric Cooperative annual membership) meeting. Leading the list is “Why no mail-in-ballots?” followed by “Why no notice of the meeting?” and “What’s on the agenda?”
The “official notice” of the 2014 annual members meeting was included in the last issue of “Enchantment Magazine.” It was also mentioned in SEC President Anne Dorough’s letter enclosed in the last SEC billing. (See previous email and/or posting at www.informedcynic.com ).
The agenda is posted at www.informedcynic.com. Note that the agenda states “registration” not registration and voting. This is because of actions by the SEC attorneys, which are backed by management and the majority of three on the Board of Trustees. Although three propositions were passed by District 2, the attorneys have once again blocked a District’s and member’s right to send propositions to the full membership for a vote at the next succeeding annual members’ meeting as required by our bylaws. Instead the attorneys have placed these propositions on the agenda under “new business” for discussion and vote by persons in attendance. If these persons vote in favor of the propositions, they then will go to the 2015 Annual Meeting where they will be placed on the ballot. Two years for a made-up process which is against the bylaws and strips the power of the members to amend the SEC bylaws. They did this to the 2012 District 5 propositions and oddly, in Mrs. Dorough’s letter to the members, she states, “Now too much time has elapsed for the proposals to be considered at this years’ annual meeting.” Not sending the District 2 propositions for a vote by the membership is the reason for no ballots as well as an attempt to kill them.
A mind-boggling contradiction and rebuke to this stonewalling action is Mrs. Dorough’s paragraph on “progress and forward thinking that characterizes our co-op today,” which congratulates the co-op for “fully implemented previous by-law changes proposed by the members in 2010.” These bylaw changes referred to were proposed by District 5 in 2009 and voted on and passed overwhelmingly at the 2010 annual members meeting. Under the present attorneys, management and trustee majority, these bylaw changes would never have been brought to a vote. Many of you will remember that the co-op and trustee majority sued the entire membership to stop these bylaws from taking effect. In the same paragraph, the “Member By-laws Committee” is also praised as “progress”. Make no mistake, this committee is a creature of the trustees. The district meetings are the way that members propose bylaw changes.
What can be done about this situation? The attorneys say “take it to court.” What an answer! Sue ourselves for justice! The City of Socorro is working on buying the co-op because of adverse actions to the members and business community and this is not an idle threat as some think. Many say “fire the attorneys and manager.” But the attorney and manager are hired by the Board of Trustees. Three trustees, Leo Cordova, Anne Dorough and Dave Wade, are blocking remedial steps to repair this co-op and their removal is the only way to stop what is happening. District 4 and 5 members will have an opportunity to sign petitions to recall their trustees at the 2014 Annual meeting this Saturday. Members of other districts can express their opinions (and maybe appear on the TV news). Please attend.
Charlene F. Wagner
Editors note: El Defensor Chieftain has published notice of the annual meeting in the past five editions of the paper.