Written by Gilbert Kunken, President, 66 W. 94th Street and 689 Columbus Avenue on May 09, 2013
The board of our 233-unit Manhattan co-op wanted to revise the bylaws in our proprietary lease. They had remained unchanged from the very beginning of our cooperative, 45 years ago. We also wanted to change the size of the co-op board, which was set at 13 members. That size can make it hard to operate; when you foster an environment that gives everybody the opportunity to speak, the more people you have at the table, the longer everything takes.
As well, we had trouble just getting enough candidates to fill the board, and felt its size was out of proportion to a building our size. We also wanted to put in board eligibility requirements; for instance, there were no requirements whatsoever about whether or not board members had to be in good financial standing. We felt very strongly that board members should not owe any money.
We took those ideas and many other changes before the shareholders for two years in a row, and we were coming up 15 or 20 votes short each year. Why?
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