Minutes of February 2019 meeting

Minutes of meeting of the Board of Directors of the Autscape Organisation
Minutes of the board meeting held on 9th February 2019

Meeting opened 16:09 GMT

Chair Martijn, James
Present: Debbie, Elaine, Fergus, Heta, Jenny, Jeremy, Martijn, Trish
Invited: Kalen, Debbie, Peter
Apologies: James (late arrival), Kalen, Peter
Absent: Larry

1. Approvals
1.1. Minutes of the December 2018 meeting posted to the list on 9th February 2019
1.1. Minutes approved subject to minor alterations, 8 for

2. Ratifications
No ratifications

3. Proposals

3.1. The Company Secretary proposed that the board approve the contract for High Leigh posted to the list on 28th January 2019.

The board decided to divide the contract into main party and post party and vote on these separately.

3.1.1. The Company Secretary proposed that we approve the contract for the main party for High Leigh posted to the list on 28th Jan 2019
There was concern that the venue had not been seen by Autscape prior to booking. It was confirmed there had not yet been a formal Autscape visit however we are aware of the organisation, having used a sister venue, Belsey Bridge, twice before, and a member of the organising team has experienced staying at the actual venue during a private visit in the past.
Concern was expressed about the food restrictions however it was felt that was mainly banning hot food rather than biscuits etc, and our experience so far is that leniency has been shown at all venues once they understand us. It was suggested we negotiate with the venue over the issue. It was also mentioned that if a minority have serious dietary issues and have to stay offsite the bursary system could be of help.
The tuck shop is still awaiting discussion with the venue.
3.1.1. Main party contract approved (7 for, 1 against)

3.1.2. The Company Secretary proposed that we approved the contract for the post party at High Leigh posted to the board list on 28th Jan 2019.
Following a discussion, the board decided to reduce the post party number to 30 and to include some standard rooms.
The Company Secretary proposed that we approved the contract for the post party at High Leigh posted to the board list on 28th Jan 2019, subject to the following amendment:
on page 1, the following:
Post Party (Beginning after lunch on Thursday 15th and departing at approx. 11:00 on Friday 16th)
En-suite accommodation: 50 adults (children aged 6-16 years equate to half an adult)
Comprising: 40 Double en-suite rooms 10 Twin en-suite rooms
is changed to:
Post Party (Beginning after lunch on Thursday 15th and departing at approx. 11:00 on Friday 16th)
Accommodation: 30 adults (children aged 6-16 years equate to half an adult) Comprising:
20 en-suite rooms
10 non-ensuite rooms

3.1.2 Post party contract approved (6 for, 1 against, 1 abstention)

3.2. The Company Secretary proposed that the board approve the Event Proposal and Management Policy (see appendix A).

There was a discussion about including the ethos of Autscape and ensuring that the majority of organisers were autistic. Amendments were deferred to list but the Company secretary requested that everybody look at this as a matter of urgency.
Action: 3.2. Elaine to raise discussion on list and ensure vote is completed

3.3. The Honorary Secretary proposed that the board asks the Publications and Publicity subcommittee to produce a generic Autscape brochure for publicity purposes. (Note: printing would be costed and determined following approval of the final document.)
3.3. Autscape Brochure to subcommittee approved (8 for)

Action 3.3. Elaine to contact Publications Subcommittee

3.4. The Treasurer proposed that we top up the bursary fund by £1664.65 to bring the total bursary fund for 2019 to £3000.00.

Debbie queried the amount that the participants had contributed through the choosing the higher fees last year. She felt it was important that this was shown and those that contributed thanked. Jeremy said he had not made that calculation.
3.4. Top- up of Bursary fund approved (8 for)

3.5. The Treasurer proposed that Autscape uses its reserves to cover any shortfall charges incurred by an event held at High Leigh, rather than adjusting the conference fees to take the shortfall charges into account.

He stated that think that factoring in the shortfall charges to the fees would push them up to be too expensive

3.5. Reserves to cover shortfall approved (8 for)

4. Follow-ups

5. Role reports

5.1. Chair (Martijn)
Nothing to report.

James took over as Chair

5.2. Company Secretary (Elaine)
The Company Secretary reported she has started on the annual report and she already has some more policies lined up for the board next month. She has changed our registered address with Companies House but she has hit a problem with changing it at the Charities Commission. This is because of their new website. She will post on list about this because there is a significant change.

Action 5.2. Elaine to post on list about Charities Commission.

5.3. Honorary Secretary (Elaine)
Nothing to report.

5.4. Treasurer (Jeremy)
The Treasurer reported he has completed a first draft of the accounts for 2017/18 and posted them to the list, but probably not on time to have them approved here.

5.5. Fundraising Co-ordinator (Jeremy)
The Fundraising Co-ordinator reported he has looked again at the CCT Bursary Fund, which he was made aware of a few months ago, but he didn't consider applying because it said it was only for Christian groups and organisations. He wrote to the CEO of CCT and he confirmed that this was ultimately the case, so Autscape cannot apply.

He is deciding to stay in the role for now, despite his previously wanting to resign.

5.6. Membership secretary (Jeremy)
Nothing to report

5.7. Event co-ordinator Autscape 2019 (Kalen)
Report sent by Kalen: Not a lot of progress has been made towards organising Autscape for this year because we are still waiting on the venue.
However, space has been reserved in Asperger United for our announcement, which needs to be in very soon.
Debbie, Elaine and Kalen will be visiting the venue next week. We have also started discussions towards setting the fees. The call for proposals will go out by the end of next week, pending confirmation of the venue

5.8. Lists co-ordinator (James)
The List Co-ordinator reported that the list has been relatively quiet this last month, but has picked up a bit in the last few days. There have been ideas floated to engage list members more, such as an announce party (for the main event) and topic lists.

5.9. Venue search coordinator (Elaine)
The Venue Search Co-ordinator reported she will contact Giggleswick and see what they can actually offer as it is looking like a favourite for 2020. She will also get round to all the others we know of and hopefully have a comprehensive list to consider at the next meeting. New ones should also be included so anything more from the ones we are looking at should be useful. She also has a few others in mind.

6. Any Other Business
There was no other business

Closed portion of meeting

7. Follow up [REDACTED]
Martijn posted a draft of the letter which would be sent to [REDACTED] immediately.

Action: 7. Martijn to send letter

Meeting closed, 19:31