I hope your meeting goes well tonight. Its an awkward situation.
Our TRA was in the same position, let me take a wild guess that the chairman was acting unilaterally, using a close circle of friends on the committee, supported by number of members who rarely attended meetings unless there was an important vote?
We found that our TRA lost members slowly but surely over a 4 year period, as new members either accepted the direction which the TRA was heading, whilst any opposition to the key roles (officers positions) were greatly outnumbered come the AGM.
The only way the Balance was re-addressed was to form an equal voice in opposition to being simply lead blindly, Our disenchanted members became committee members and took part in making active decisions for the furtherance of the TRA. Working with resident involvement, the trainers (Harold and the department helped retrain our members, empowering, improving decision making and holding events), our committee voted to hold more social and group events to form stronger community bonds, rather than a closed network of long / old established person's with a misconceived 'social standing'.
In our case, the truth did indeed out, though it didn't happen on our first attempt, but we now have a richer TRA because of the learning process of all members. Of course, the 'old group' spent a lot of negative energy trying wrestle control back to the previous status quo, but new bonds have formed, our community is re-engaged, and actively talking to each other, far removed from a small circle of people 'in the know'.
I cannot stress how empowering sub committees can be, and allowing the group automation, and to summarise the work they are doing within the TRA group.
I know that the situation is sadly far from uncommon. It's such a pity.
It"s also encouraging that your TRA is now flourishing and I hope ours will get through this difficult situation. I"ll report back later!
Well, the turnout was not bad with 39 people who were eligible to vote.
Interestingly enough, the source of most of the trouble failed to turn up citing sickness (he was fit enough during the day to go round removing posters for the event!)
The first vote on whether to vote on the whole report and its recommendations was carried 28 for and 11 against. The main vote to accept the report and its recommendations was carried 25 for, 12 against and one abstention
An electronic secret ballot voting system was great for avoiding the usual intimidation.....
So the Chair and Secretary must step down for at least two years. Result!
Also of interest was that, with the main protagonist absent, it was a very good natured affair.