CTEC’S DISTRICT MEETINGS ARE SCHEDULED to take place in each of the co-op’s six districts this June. Elections will be held in Mason, Llano, Comfort and Fredericksburg as part of the process for selecting nominees for directors from those districts.
Voting Is “In Person” Only
Under the coop’s bylaws, voting by proxy is not allowed at district meetings. “This rule was implemented about 25 years ago, with the input of a member advisory committee,” according to CEO Bob Loth, “because our members and our directors wanted to make sure that the voice of members attending district meetings was given appropriate weight and to ensure the ‘local’ nature of the selection of nominees.” Because of the prohibition on proxy voting, a person holding power of attorney for a member cannot use that instrument to vote at a district meeting.
CTEC bylaws provide that a married couple may establish a joint membership, and when they do so, either spouse may vote for the membership. This includes the right to vote at district meetings. However, it is important to note that not all memberships established for married couples are set up as joint memberships. The option belongs to the person or persons filling out the application for service with the co-op. In addition to its effect on voting, joint membership creates specific legal rights with regard to the membership account. Members can determine whether they hold a joint membership by calling their local co-op office. If a membership is not a joint membership, the spouse of a member will be allowed to vote for the membership (with approved identification) unless the owner of a single membership has indicated in writing that such a privilege is not to be allowed.
Converting a Membership to a Joint Membership
A membership can be converted to a joint membership by written request of the member and execution of a membership agreement by the member and his or her spouse. These converted memberships must be approved by the co-op’s board of directors. In accordance with the bylaws, for a joint membership to be voted as such at a district meeting, the converted membership must be approved on or before the first Thursday in May preceding the district meeting. To meet this deadline for 2021 district meetings, requests to convert memberships to joint memberships must be submitted so they are received in the co-op headquarters office no later 5 p.m., Thursday, May 6, 2021.
Firms, Associations and Corporations
Authorized representatives of businesses, community clubs, churches, trusts and similar organizations that hold co-op memberships are permitted to vote at district meetings.
Call Now To Clarify Your Voting Status
Questions about the status of a membership account as a joint or individual account can be directed to the CTEC Member Services Department at 1-800-900-2832. In Fredericksburg, the local number is (830) 997-2126. As noted above, a member does have the right to convert an individual membership to a joint membership by completing a new membership application, but because the application must be approved, strict deadlines must be observed. In other circumstances, it may be appropriate to set up a membership as a business or trust account, enabling an authorized representative of the business or trust to cast the member’s vote.
Questions about these arrangements can also be answered by calling the telephone numbers shown above.
District Meeting Voting Summary
- Members must be present to vote at the meeting. Proxy votes are not allowed.
- At all member meetings, the spouse of a member will be allowed to vote the membership, whether single or joint, unless the owner of a single membership has indicated in writing that such voting privilege is not to be allowed.
- Under the bylaws, requests to convert single memberships to joint memberships must be approved by the board of directors at their meeting on the second Tuesday in May. To meet this deadline for the 2021 district meetings, these requests must be submitted to CTEC headquarters no later than 5 p.m., Thursday, May 6, 2021.
- Call CTEC if you have any questions about voting for your membership.