Many companies are worried about governance in the current climate. Sports organisations are no different.
In most cases their Constitution/Rules do not provide for a “virtual” or “remote” means of operating. There are particular concerns around AGMs and EGMs.
But the show must go on.
The GAA recognise this.
Tomorrow they will hold a remote special congress (an “EGM” equivalent). There is one item of business on the agenda - to appoint a Management Committee to take decisions in the governance vacuum.
That is sensible.
- It simplifies the remote EGM by having just one motion;
- It recognises that important decisions need to be made
- It recognises that responsibility needs to be delegated.
Even if the Constitution is silent (which is not ideal), Section 176(4) of the Companies Act allows AGMs or EGMs to “ be held in two or more venues at the same time using any technology that provides members, as a whole, with a reasonable opportunity to participate”. This can be interpreted as providing for virtual or remote AGMs or EGM's provided reasonable measures are implemented.
- Identify what key governance decisions need to be taken
- Identify if an AGM / EGM is required (AGM’s must be held within 15 months of the previous AGM);
- Simplify any remote meetings;
- Communicate any proposals with your members in advance;
- Amend your Constitution to explicitly provide for online meetings.
The GAA is to hold a remote special congress next Friday, April 17th. It is expected to have one item of business, an enabling motion authorising the association’s Management Committee to take decisions relating to governance and scheduling of competitions during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.