Now at foody.org/coop.html


I was stuck in an emergency room during the last General Meeting, so again I rely on the official Linewaiter's Gazette reportage.

The GM narrowly elected, by a vote of 41-39, the glad-handing incumbent president Eric Schneider over his challenger, the Environmental Committee member Paul Bermanzohn. Bermanzohn had promised to unite the whole coop in a McCarthyesque campaign against genetically engineered food. His loss means that coop Luddites will have to settle for lesser, committee-level activism, fueled in part by anti-science propaganda previously presented at the GM.

Half the meeting attendees fled after the election. After a report by the Marketing Committee, which has lots of projects but still can't claim that it has increased coop membership, the GM debated whether to add an automated teller machine to the shopping floor. This had been informally rejected in a previous GM, in which the Renovation Committee had insisted that there was no room for an ATM.

According to the Gazette, this new ATM proposal came from a member who touted it for easy shopper access to cash. (Aside from cash, the coop accepts only checks covered by previous deposits.) Most members opposed the proposal on personal-safety grounds, saying that the coop's lack of stockpiled cash has deterred thieves. The proposing member "responded by explaining that it would not necessarily be the Coop's monies," a distinction that I'm sure would discourage cooperative burglars.

It turned out that the member herself planned to lease the ATM to the coop, and to stock it with cash, and to charge a $1.25 transaction fee. How helpful. I wish I could've seen her respond to the discussion of her conflict of interest, and to the reminders that proposers should be treated with respect. Her proposal was voted down 2-40, with 2 abstentions.

In other news, Dear Leader Joe Holtz announced that the National Cooperative Bank had given preliminary loan approval for Building Next Door renovation, and that the construction would be only "part union." This will incense union supporters but make the project affordable.

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