Minutes from Board Meeting – 5th October 2020

Greenslate Community Farm Ltd

Board Handover Meeting 

Date: 5/10/2020  via  Zoom

Present: Dave Fairhurst, Ian Bowyer, Donald McQueen, Joe Taylor, Rhiannon Jones, Jane Fairhurst, Paul Corkhill, Pat Bray, Alan Kehoe, Beth Hollihead, Stuart Hollihead, Caroline Hudson

Apologies: None

Absent: None

Chair: Donald McQueen

Minutes: Caroline Hudson

Declaration of interest: None

Agenda referenceMinutesAction
1Minutes of 27/9/2020 AGM agreed by all
2 & 3  Report from DF:   DF stated that the farm may require more financial assistance going forward and that decisions will need to be reached as soon as possible regarding any layoff of surplus staff and hiring of a new grower.  The need for a new pay structure and reorganising of staff tiers was touched upon.     Two points of contact are required from the new board members for P2C.     One point of contact is required for the Business Energy claim which has been allocated for a small claims court and should return approx. £3-5k to farm accounts.  Points of contact to be agreed at first meeting of the new board.   DF invites questions and other comments:   BH enquired into the use of farm run accounts for online services, e.g. zoom.  None to be transferred at present.   AK Reminder that wages are due to be paid on the 15th of the month and that a new system will be used for furlough as of November.  AK confirmed MB will be assisting with all wage issues.  Casual staff paid up to last month but are not paid going forward due to high costs.   
   Report from AK:   AK stated that the closing position of farm finances had been provided via email.  On raising concerns that the café is supported by grant money, AK was asked to omit information which was of a HR concern.  Financial issues within the café include; parity of pay agreement not sustainable, no logging of incoming/outgoing stock, growing and animal products not accounted for, finances taken as support from care farm mean care farm is prevented from reinvesting their own profit.   Marketing needs to improve for grower produce.   There was a brief discussion of the finances available and ring-fenced as per the emailed treasurer’s report.   AK reminder to have accounts signed off and sent requiring membership approval.   AK will continue to support MB in rectifying 2017 accounts and all relevant passwords have been passed to MB.   If JM is to continue assisting the reboot of the café, she needs a manager to work with or to be asked to join the staff.   Cheque signatories will be needed from the new board.
Points of contact and signatories to be assigned at next meet
Persons to work on specific HR issues to be assigned at next meet
Previous accounts to be submitted to members for approval
4All current board members to stand down and handover is complete.  New board (CH, BH, SH, DM, PB) members gave thanks to the old board for their commitment and effort and for their offer to help ease the transition if needed.
5AOB:RJ asked the board to confirm that an education group was permitted to complete their course sessions in the Strawbale building.  Agreement was reached that this was acceptable if they meet in the evenings to avoid risks of infection between themselves and daytime users of the site.
All exit except CH, BH, SH, DM, PB.  A consensus was reached that, although there were pressing issues to be discussed, the hour was becoming late so the new board should reconvene the following evening.
6Next meeting – 6/10/2020 via Zoom at 6.30pm (BH to host)
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