Arts OutWest Special General Meeting

Filed : Featured, Local and industry news .

Arts OutWest is holding a special general meeting on Tuesday 8 May, 5pm at Orange Ex-Services Club to put a new constitution to the membership.

The meeting is to put a new constitution to the membership so that we can put a skills-based board in place.  Financial members of Arts OutWest are invited to attend and vote on the decision to adopt this new constitution.

The new constitution isn’t very different to the old one and is based on the model rules from NSW Fair Trading, but there are a few important changes to this and to the process of appointing the board (committee of management) each year.

The changes are summarised as:

  1. The board members will be made up of people who apply to the position and who are selected by a committed based on the skill that they bring. Arts OutWest will also endeavour to ensure that the board has as much diversity as possible in terms of gender, age, location of board members and cultural background.  Currently the board is made up of representatives from each council, CSU and membership.  This change will shrink the board from 15 positions to a smaller management committee of 7-10 people.
  2. The membership of Arts OutWest will slightly change. At the moment the membership is made of contributing councils (Bathurst, Blayney, Cabonne, Cowra, Forbes, Lachlan, Lithgow, Oberon, Orange, Parkes, Weddin), Charles Sturt University and individual/organisations who subscribe to be members.  In the new model the category for subscribing members will no longer exist because they are all covered by their council’s membership. We felt that we were not able to offer enough to individuals and organisations who paid their annual membership fees that was not already available, as anyone who lives in a council area that contributes to Arts OutWest is entitled to our services.  The only practical difference that this makes is that those members who were individual/organisation subscribing members will not be able to vote at the AGM or general meetings in the future, but they will still be very welcome to attend and provide their opinions to Arts OutWest and to the council members who will vote.
  3. In order to ensure that the councils and CSU continue to be represented, we are creating a new body, the Arts OutWest Advisory Council. This body will be made up of a representative from each council and from CSU and will meet twice a year.  They won’t have to worry about the governance of the organisation, but can focus instead on impacting on decisions about what Arts OutWest activities are planned, the strategic direction of the organisation and making sure that each LGA is well-provided for.

This change has come about partly because the major funder of the NSW regional arts development organisations, Create NSW, wanted to see the 14 NSW regional arts organisations move to a skills-based model.  Arts OutWest was already aware of the need to move to a skills-based board that is in line with the professional level of services that we provide and the substantial financial income that we manage each year.

The process is staggered over two-years to ensure that we have continuity.  Arts OutWest is currently seeking applicants to apply to the newly created skills-based board positions.

The new draft constitution can be obtained by contacting:
artsoutwest@csu.edu.au along with the Arts OutWest document
Policy and Procedures: Board Structure or any information about applying
to be on the Arts OutWest board.

Image: Arts OutWest AGM in Orange

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