Possible Voting Reform

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Possible Voting Reform

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Fri Jan 20, 2017 11:54 pm

Brian Towers wrote:
Andrew Zigmond wrote:My main view, which I kept coming back to, is that however much weight the views of direct members carry in Council, it should be representative and members should be balloted with their votes cast accordingly. It may be that the votes have to be split between membership category (as they are now) or by county so that a bronze/ gold or North/ South difference is taken into account but the process should be transparent and accountable.
I'm curious about this principle and how it would work.

I'm a silver member, last year played in congresses A, B and C and in leagues X, Y and Z in Durham and Northumberland Counties in the NCCU.

Will I, should I, be balloted just the once for my silver membership? 10 times to reflect all my participation and membership? or some number in between?
Answering Brian's question; with balloting I'm specifically referring to direct membership votes (the votes are counted, audited and the result declared with the proxy votes being cast at the ECF AGM accordingly). If this happens in an Option C scenario with the old membership organisations remaining on council, congress organisers will still be able to cast their votes as they see fit. They could ballot their entrants, just as they could do now, but they wouldn't be obliged to do so. It will also still be the business of leagues and councils as to how they consult and cast their votes. The critical point is that your direct membership representative will be bound to cast his votes in accordance with a majority (or plurality) of his constituents.
Walter Winchell once wrote:Too many people expect wonders from democracy when the wonderful thing is just having it.
I came across this wonderful quotation many years ago and it's always stayed with me. No matter what system the ECF adopts it is not going to be perfect. When Council makes a controversial decision (normally in electing or not electing a certain candidate) the first refuge of those unhappy with the result is to state or imply that the council vote was a stitch up and/ or that under OMOV it would not have happened. It is important that the views of direct members are better represented and it is vital that Council takes this opportunity to do so. Once they've settled upon an option, we can start refining that proposal in earnest.
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Mick Norris
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Re: Possible Voting Reform

Post by Mick Norris » Mon Jan 23, 2017 11:43 am

Andrew Zigmond wrote:
Michael Farthing wrote:... a big concern must be the level of participation that can be expected from the direct membership. It is simply not going to happen that we shall get views from any significant number of members on most issues that come before Council.
A counter argument is that direct members aren't particularly motivated to contact an individual who can only cast one vote on their behalf. If their view carried more weight within council or they had a vote themselves they might take more interest. It's something of a Catch 22 situation; they can't get more influence until they show more interest and they might not show more interest until they get more influence. It is a difficult one. When I try to engage Yorkshire players on ECF matters (with the message, `These are your votes, tell us what you think` or something along those lines) I very rarely get anything back.
Probably, most direct members don't have much interest in matters coming before Council (although a minority of us do), but it may be the case that electing the ECF board would gain enough interest (although whether the best candidates would be elected is another matter)

I'm guessing that county players would respond on issues affecting the county championships, those who play (or aspire to) at the British would respond to issues affecting that etc;

I'm not sure; we will discuss tonight at MCF Council and see

OMOV for ECF board elections could work, with Council remaining in place for everything else; I'm guessing a version of Option 3 is the only chance of getting a 75% majority vote
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

Angus French
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Re: Possible Voting Reform

Post by Angus French » Mon Jan 23, 2017 12:46 pm

Mick Norris wrote:Probably, most direct members don't have much interest in matters coming before Council (although a minority of us do)
If Michael and John, as Silver members' reps, currently receive more than 100 consultation responses and I, as a Bronze members' rep, currently receive either over 30 (for AGMs) or over 60 (for Finance meetings - when membership fee rates are set) then I don't think that's at all bad.
Mick Norris wrote:OMOV for ECF board elections could work, with Council remaining in place for everything else...
I don't like the idea of direct members voting in Directors for the reasons given in the Consultation paper and, more generally, because I prefer representative democracy over direct democracy. I doubt Council could continue to exist if it didn't elect the Board.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Possible Voting Reform

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Jan 23, 2017 12:50 pm

Angus French wrote: I doubt Council could continue to exist if it didn't elect the Board.
You could have the less executive members of the Board directly elected, so that's the President, the Chairman and the pair of non-execs. Council elect or ratify everyone else. Such solutions can be implemented in an incremental manner.

John Reyes
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Re: Possible Voting Reform

Post by John Reyes » Mon Jan 23, 2017 1:52 pm

Angus French wrote:
Mick Norris wrote:Probably, most direct members don't have much interest in matters coming before Council (although a minority of us do)
If Michael and John, as Silver members' reps, currently receive more than 100 consultation responses and I, as a Bronze members' rep, currently receive either over 30 (for AGMs) or over 60 (for Finance meetings - when membership fee rates are set) then I don't think that's at all bad.
Mick Norris wrote:OMOV for ECF board elections could work, with Council remaining in place for everything else...
I don't like the idea of direct members voting in Directors for the reasons given in the Consultation paper and, more generally, because I prefer representative democracy over direct democracy. I doubt Council could continue to exist if it didn't elect the Board.

I know Michael and Me will be asking what the Members wanted, and that we will be sending a Email in due course with the Bronze members!!

I wonder if the gold members will do the same?
Any postings on here represent my personal views only

Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Possible Voting Reform

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:02 pm

Angus French wrote:[
I don't like the idea of direct members voting in Directors for the reasons given in the Consultation paper and, more generally, because I prefer representative democracy over direct democracy. I doubt Council could continue to exist if it didn't elect the Board.
To an extent the ECF is already a representative democracy as league and county delegates are normally elected to serve at an annual meeting and can, in theory, be ousted by those they are accountable to. In practice, for various reasons, it doesn't work like that. If the ECF were to adopt a constituency system would the quality and (more importantly) accountability of representatives be any better?
Controller - Yorkshire League
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Paolo Casaschi
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Re: Possible Voting Reform

Post by Paolo Casaschi » Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:16 pm

Angus French wrote:I don't like the idea of direct members voting in Directors for the reasons given in the Consultation paper and, more generally, because I prefer representative democracy over direct democracy. I doubt Council could continue to exist if it didn't elect the Board.
Direct members electing the Board would still be a representative democracy. With the major advantage of combining onto the same entity (direct members) the duty of financing the organization and the right to select the managers of the organization.

The main issue of the current ECF setup, in my opinion, is that a set of members (the organization members) hold the voting rights while a different set of members (the direct members) are asked to finance the ECF through membership fees. To the point that I would be happy with the current organizational structure of the ECF, provided that direct membership fees are scrapped and those member organizations are charged membership fees.

Mick Norris
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Re: Possible Voting Reform

Post by Mick Norris » Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:43 pm

Angus French wrote:
Mick Norris wrote:Probably, most direct members don't have much interest in matters coming before Council (although a minority of us do)
If Michael and John, as Silver members' reps, currently receive more than 100 consultation responses and I, as a Bronze members' rep, currently receive either over 30 (for AGMs) or over 60 (for Finance meetings - when membership fee rates are set) then I don't think that's at all bad.
I don't think it is a bad response for chess players :) , but how many Bronze and Silver members are there? It is a small minority that respond
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

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