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EDA NEWSLETTER - MARCH 2020
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THIS MONTH IN EDA NEWS
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT CHANGES IN EDA
   A message to our Governing Circle of Active Members
   Call for Election Commissioners: three positions open
   Chairs of Research, Education and Advocacy: our new evaluation process
NEWS FROM THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES - EDA's President has resigned
TOWN HALL ANNOUNCEMENT - Meet with your At-Large Trustees: March 9, 2020
WHAT WE'RE READING & WATCHING - Forecasts and solutions
DOING THE GOOD WORK - Our partnership with Prout
JOIN THE EDA TEAM! - Do you have bookkeeping skills?
YOUR HELP IS NEEDED - Please be generous
Important information
about changes in EDA

A message to our Governing Circle of Active Members

Many changes are afoot in the world. The same is true for EDA.

In the fall, a grievance was filed against the EDA Board of Trustees. The Mediation Body deliberated and sent a report on the grievance to Board members in late December.

For two months, the Board has been carefully and methodically analyzing the Mediation Body report and its bearing on EDA. As a result, EDA will be reorganizing during March and April and these changes will be fully completed in May. This newsletter includes information about several of these developments as we undertake significant course correction with an eye to creating greater transparency.

Changes will involve a renewed focus on our Governing Circle, the Active Members of EDA who are the reason this organization exists. As members, you will see many new opportunities to become directly involved in our decision-making and to take part in our substantive programs. Our commitment to democracy is our commitment to you.

Call for Election Commissioners: three positions open

EDA’s top priority is to appoint a new Election Board in accordance with the guidelines set out in the EDA Charter. Our Election Board will be appointed by the Executive Committee and then operate independently of the Board in order to conduct free and fair elections.

We are required to have three election commissioners. Therefore, the EDA Executive Committee is putting out a call for three members who have high integrity, some basic computer skills and are deeply interested in the importance of democratic procedures.

The three-person Board will be in charge of developing and running our elections and referendums. Most of the work of the committee this year will be in the Spring and Summer. If you are interested in serving in this capacity, please contact the Executive Committee on the Active Members site on Loomio. Or send an email to EDA Secretary, Eva Simonsen.

Chairs of Research, Education and Advocacy: our new evaluation process

The Board of Trustees was out of compliance with our Cooperative Charter when they held a ratification process this past summer for the Chairs of our Research, Education and Advocacy teams. This came to light through the grievance mentioned above.

The Chairs were self-appointed under the old organization and the Board neglected to evaluate their work and formally reappoint them after the Cooperative Charter was adopted and our new organization began. Putting their names up for ratification by our members last summer was a breach in judgment and the Board sincerely apologizes for this to our members.

In March, the performance of the current chairpersons will be formally evaluated and the results of this evaluation will be posted on the Active Members site. If the evaluations are favorable, the Board may appoint the current Chairs. If any of the evaluations prove unsatisfactory, the Board will not appoint the Chair and instead open the position to EDA members through the Active Members site on Loomio. In either case, the appointment of these Chairs will need to be ratified by our members later this Spring.

– NEWS FROM THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES –
EDA's President has resigned

On January 25, George Catlin notified the EDA Board of Trustees that he was leaving his position as President of the Board. He wishes to remain engaged with EDA, but feels it necessary to step back from the President's duties at this time. We offer our deepest thanks to George for his service and are grateful for all of his contributions to the formation and launch of this organization.

In the wake of his departure, we would like everyone in EDA to know that all of our activities, including the work of the Action Council Teams—Education, Research and Advocacy—are continuing and that EDA’s outreach and partnering initiatives are also ongoing. The election of a new president and other pending matters for ratification by the EDA Governing Circle of members will be announced soon.

– TOWN HALL ANNOUNCEMENT –
Meet with your At-Large Trustees
MARCH 9, 2020

Join us on Zoom for the next in our series of Town Hall meetings on Monday, March 9th at 5:00 PDT/8:00 EDT* for a discussion about the changes taking place in EDA and our plans for the future. This is your opportunity to have your questions answered and to ensure your interests and concerns are factored into these next important steps.

We know that the health and vitality of EDA and our shared vision for a more equitable world depends on our ability to adapt quickly and meaningfully to changes occurring within and outside our organization. To make sure we get it right, we depend on your input and continued support.

* Daylight Savings Time begins Sunday, March 8

– WHAT WE'RE READING & WATCHING –
Forecasts and solutions

Economic democracy in action: our community, our economy
James Quilligan, international policy advisor and managing director of Economic Democracy Advocates Foundation discusses economic democracy in action: our community, our economy. It's a good summary of the misconceptions in the current economy, how those should be redefined, the reasons that EDA came into existence and its primary strategy, all in just over 10 minutes.

James Quilligan - Economic democracy in action: our community, our economy   Time: 0:11:51

How urban agriculture is transforming Detroit
Devita Davison explains how features of Detroit's decay actually make it an ideal spot for urban agriculture. Join Davison for a walk through neighborhoods in transformation as she shares stories of opportunity and hope. "These aren't plots of land where we're just growing tomatoes and carrots," Davison says. "We're building social cohesion as well as providing healthy, fresh food."

TED    How urban agriculture is transforming Detroit    Time: 0:12:22

Climate change will strain federal finances
The federal government is ill-prepared to shoulder what could be a trillion-dollar fiscal crisis associated with extreme weather, floods, wildfires and other climate disasters through 2100, federal investigators have found. The findings follow a dramatic escalation in federal spending on disaster assistance since 2005. Much of that money—upward of $450 billion—has been appropriated under supplemental spending packages following disasters rather than through the normal budgetary process.

Food security and why it matters
The global food security challenge is straightforward: by 2050, the world must feed 9 billion people. The demand for food will be 60% greater than it is today. The United Nations has set ending hunger, achieving food security and improved nutrition, and promoting sustainable agriculture as the second of its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for the year 2030.

– DOING THE GOOD WORK –
Our partnership with Prout

EDA’s partnership with Prout continues to evolve. In February, our research team provided maps as part of legislative testimony in support of Bill LD 1943 for the protection of drinking water for low income people in the State of Maine. The research team is also mapping carrying capacity for the Penobscot River watershed in support of Bill LD 2094 for the inherent sovereignty of the Indigenous Nations in Maine.

Other projects with Prout affiliates in White Plains, NY, and Carbondale, IL, are developing.

In addition, EDA Managing Director James Quilligan has joined the advisory board of Future Planet Europe, a major economic project of Prout-Global. He is speaking at their conference and spending several days in advisory discussions with them in Lisbon, Portugal, in late February to early March.

– JOIN THE EDA TEAM! –
Do you have bookkeeping skills?

EDA is looking for a volunteer bookkeeper. This would involve recording purchases, sales, receipts, payments and other financial transactions, requiring about five hours a month. If you’re able to help out, please contact Jonathan Stoller.

– YOUR HELP IS NEEDED –
Please be generous

EDA and EDA Foundation are asking for financial support from friends and members to help amplify our work and our messaging. Funds are needed to expand our Research, Advocacy and Education Teams. We need to develop a new website and expand our online and social media presence. Monies are also needed to send our trainers and speakers to various conferences, meetings and legislative events as we continue our outreach with new collaborative partners.

We're grateful to those of you who have already donated, and want to give our special thanks to those who have signed up for regular monthly contributions. Your generosity helps us sustain all of our work.

All contributions to EDA Foundation are tax deductible and support research, education and training programs. All contributions to EDA are non-tax-deductible and support our advocacy work with your elected officials.

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