NEC minutes for 3rd April 2014

Thursday, 3 April, 2014 - 20:30
Loz Kaye (LK) - Leader
Jason Winstanley (JW) - Nominations
Tom Burd (TB) - Deputy Nominations
Andy Halsall (AH) - Campaigns
Sam Clark (SC) - Treasury
Ed Geraghty (EG) - Secretary
Will Tovey (WT) - Board
Peter Brett (PB) - Board
Stephen Ogden (SO) - Comms/Social Media/Board
Not Present: 
Sephy Hallow (SH) - Deputy Leader (Apologies came after the meeting)
Liam Dolman (LD) - Board
macburns - PPUK/DE/Pirates without Borders. (mickey sinclair)
Andrew Norton (AN) - Board/Press

Matters Arising

  • AH to follow up with SO on UK candidates. - Done, more on that later

  • Chase nominations papers for EU from candidates - With LK, need to get together with JW/TB

  • AN - and JW to go over the election platform. - Not done, carry over for a week

  • AH to set up election monitor access for monitors - Done

  • JA to put together an overview for NEC on PPEU conf - Done

  • AH and SC to collaborate on treasury mails. - Done

  • LK to talk to JW about the NW region paperwork and nominations. - Done, ongoing

  • EG to update NEC when that goes out (Ruby programmers) - To go out by end w.16

  • LK/SH to write Leader's update - Done, final proofreading

  • SH and JA to go into a coop branch with 2 forms of ID ASAP - Nothing heard, Ongoing

Previous Minutes

Approved by all in attendance


Leader's Office

Brief update (max. 5 minutes) on actions/tasks since last meeting

LK: Media is ongoing, most high profile was the telegraph article.

Gave a talk to young people about political engagement at an event hosted by the Adam Smith Institute.

Preparing to head over to Sweden to give a talk at the PPSE EU launch.

In terms of local campaigning LK has been covering a range of issues including lots of photo ops undergoing anti-facial recognition makeover and, Manchester Evening News for heritage campaigns.

Local Labour has been pushed into taking up broadband as an issue.

SH: Absent



Brief update (max. 5 minutes) on actions/tasks since last meeting

SC: Is happy with all the things on site WRT membership. Party can now take DD payments which SC wants to push (will be writing a module?).

SC will now be focusing on accounts, SC believes he has 2 days to complete.

SC is not available next week.

LK Asked about timetable given the need for NEC and board approval.  LK reiterated that the doc should be in the same format as last time.

SC stated that it would be the same form as last time. It will look the same.  AH offered to provide the retrospective and volunteered LK to do the same.

SC anticipated that it would be available for FOC and NEC by the 14th. It will be published either at the deadline or with board approval, whichever is first.

Due date is the last day of April.

SC would have liked to have had the accounts audited, but hasn't had time, also feels that the funding is better spent on campaigns.  LK agrees.



Brief update (max. 5 minutes) on actions/tasks since last meeting

Site launch has happened and we have been dealing with feedback; fixing and making things better - there has been a large uptick in the volunteers, as well as inbound by phone, email

Extra RSS feeds!

Long discussion between AH, SO and EG about communication stragey - to go over later

EU elections: Fairly tight timetable, with interesting timetable clashes; brief to be distributed as soon as candidates are happyWith higher visibility, we have had more inbound and also more directed outbound - for the record, National Health Alliance, Liberal party

voting on eCig/EU polls, which is nice

sorting out processes and logistics, we're in a much better position now than a week ago - everything we had hoped would happen has happened.



Brief update (max. 5 minutes) on actions/tasks since last meeting

Meeting as per mentioned by AH above, working on in/out, need to migrate some last little bits over to NWP

Carry on as before



Brief update (max. 5 minutes) on actions/tasks since last meeting

Still no candidates for the ongoing board election

Still waiting on JA's EU 2014 nomination form

LK: says when he is back from Sweden, LK, JW and TB should find a moment to go over EU paperwork - physical paper, too much to realistically scan

//ACTION LK JW to talk on monday before 1600 on Nominations.

JW confirms TB has a @ppuk email, and has been added to the Nominations list - to be added to NEC list

//ACTION JW to get TB added to NEC list

//ACTION JW/TB to pass on TB's account details to AH

AH has spoken with the London Branch, would like the NEC to ratify Mark Chapman as a candidate in London, with the caveat that it is given branch standing

AH proposes a vote to ratify for local elections in May of this year

WT and SC enquire as to cost - AH states it's for Lambeth Council elections - only cost is short-run campaign; budget max of £800 - SC states his maximum budget is £400.

Vassall ward in Lambeth - EG states he plans to make contact as he is nearby, SO states from brief conversation he seems to be good

Mark wants to bring his own election agent

Vote to ratify for local elections in May of this year:


//ACTION JW to chase Mark Chapman


Membership Drive

AH states Now in a position to run this, everything except technical issues with bitcoin

We are now taking more full memberships than reduced than before

Needs to be run alongside EU/local election drives

Covered in part in our comms strategy

LD asks about membership terms for those with existing accounts on NWP - AH and SC clarify that there is no issue with this, SC is running these accounts manually

LD says he is having some problems with his account as a result of creation in beta - AH states that if you have not created any content, you can delete your account and migrate - AH/LD to talk about later, outside meeting


Donation Drive

AH: more methods of donation - existing donations continue as a source, also EU donations button on every page, no idea on impact as yet - soliciting donations with Social Media team as part of their remit, Campaigns are producing material for them

Spoke with SC about PPAU crowd-funding, hands to SC

SC spoke with LK, it was the service "pozible" used by PPAU, which looks good - LK doing blurb, need videos as agreed - timeframe is limited by our ability to produce video

Video target date 12th April, launch at the 12th - PPAU were able to raise AU$10k in 2 weeks

//ACTION video/blurb/images for pozible


Communications Strategy 2014

AH asks if NEC have read the comms strategy, asks for any input - none

SO started comms strategy implementation as from today.

AH states he is looking forward to seeing how this pans out, putting out more formally structured social media, utilising a better structure to support candidates

LK asks if we want to go down the route of active seeking on social, AH says this was agreed in comms meeting

LK says he has a good 'in' through #NetNeutrality for people who supported the petition


NEC/Board/Branch recruitment

The party has various recruitment issues to deal with (NEC/Board/Branch).

LK outlined the issues with board recruitment and retention as he saw it, including the lack of candidates for open positions.

PB stated that the board had discussed this a little. PB felt that we should look at which board members have been long term members.  PB felt that they were all people who had been directly involved in the NEC or running aspects of the party.  For example SO, PB, WT - PB felt that generally where people had come in to the board without previous activity they left fairly quickly. There are exceptions said PB, such as LD.

PB felt that NEC members should be recruited to the board, especially if the board is to execute its full oversight. PB was disappointed that LA and PC were dissuaded from the Board (AH confirmed he had dissuaded those NEC members from joining the board).  PB felt it was better to have an understrength board than repeated elections.

SO had reached out to people to bring them into the party and the board.  SO felt he didn't think the membership wanted to do that.  Feeling that was an "us and them" situation.  SO felt the right process was to bring in people, have them become volunteers and then lead the party.  SO felt that there could be little trust if people were pulled in.

LK felt that it was up to the board as to how this was handled.  LK felt that it had an effect on the internal workings of the party.  LK felt that even if LC and PC put themselves forward it wouldn't have filled all the positions. LK said he felt it was time to use the new platform for that(?) and that this was a time to use it for bringing people in.

LK felt we wanted to open up the relationship between the board, the NEC and the wider membership

PB felt that the board wasn't understaffed for its tasking.

AH wanted to come back on PB's point on looking over shoulders - AH states it was minor, and we haven't really had that; major concern with migration of NEC members to Board, we want them to do other tasks - they are more useful.

AH points out that Board sometimes is "more impartial" than they should be (e.g. PPI vote) and need to get more involved. PB Agreed broadly.

JW asks about nominations for open board positions - PB wants them to be kept open until there are enough candidates to fill

LD brings up that the ongoing nominations for vacant board positions is not prominent enough on NWP, LK states we need a post about it

JW enquires about Newsletters - will be going out as per comms strategy

//ACTION Board to write a post for NWP on board elections (AN lead)



SC has registered a limited company in his name only, sole director with 1,500 shares - Articles and Memorandum are standard boilerplate, EG/SC to get proper, independent legal advice on this

WT posts the memo he had previously written on incorporation of the party when this idea was first floated

PB states independent legal advice is a must; SC and EG agree

PB states Directors are not shielded by liability on this setup, asks if there is tax liability on assets received from the party - it would be better as a coop mutually owned by all of the members rather than a company limited by shares

WT points out that with a coop, you must disclose the name and addresses of all members to each other, most parties use a company limited by guarantees rather than shares

PC states that PP Ltd would deal with money side and invoice the party for services rendered - this would shield the party from liability

PB asks about volunteers and employment law, and indemnity insurance; AH and SC state this is being organised anyway, regardless of our incorporation

PB asks how/where/whom on legal advice - SC states we don't know as yet - WT says he could look for specialised political party lawyers

AH asks who is responsible for this, LK states it lies with SC

PB states that the board have tried to push this a couple of times, but the NEC are incredibly busy with more important things - SC states this is on his list directly after the accounts, can handle at the same time as EU

By NEC meeting on 15th May, we will have received legal advice and will have reported back; mumble meeting at the beginning of May

//ACTION PB to organise a meeting to drive incorporation forward


EU Nominations

AH wants to break down responsibilities today, so that we are all clear and everything is dealt with.

Election agent needs to be appointed.

Needs to coordinate mailouts, LK offers to be the regional agent given his experience - AH states he is happy, with obvious caveats - LK/AH to look at sub-agents

Final count & result will be on Sunday 25th, there needs to be one person there from the party as an agent

EU Leaflets

no. 1 priority - needs to happen before the start of nominations

AH states that LK needs to coordinate the following responsibilities of those on the ground:

  • AH needs to put together leaflets with the candidates and send to printer
  • SC will organise the printing (has negotiated a 25% discount with the printer) and needs to speak with Royal Mail for their requirements,  logistics of delivering to Royal Mail
  • SC to coordinate with LK to distribute the leaflets

EU Campaign

need photographs and video - pressing forward

We will be able to run the campaign we need to run

JA has got contacts through PPEU to AH for video resources from other places, less talking head stuff

SC asks about payment - SC will talk with LK/JW ASAP


PPI Conference

14th April (maybe) - we don't have the resources to go to this, it'll be remote delegates.

We said last year that we wanted people to attend and intended people to attend, but we cannot send anyone as we need them for our campaign, and need the money.

AN offers to do the coordination, AH thanks him but states we have our own International department who will coordinate on our behalf

SC states that he was supposed to have set up a UK bank account, they have not replied or sent back the authorisation letter.  AH states we had tried to help them, but they have not done anything from their side


TTIP protests

AH states he thinks this should be pushed back down to branch level, with no opposition from the NEC


New Web Project (NWP)

NWP is fantastic. WOO!


//ACTION LK JW to talk on monday before 1600 on Nominations.

//ACTION JW to get TB added to NEC list

//ACTION JW/TB to pass on TB's account details to AH

//ACTION JW to chase Mark Chapman

//ACTION JW speak to LK to discuss EU Nominations payment

//ACTION video/blurb/images for pozible by the 12th April

//ACTION PB to organise a meeting to drive incorporation forward

//ACTION Board to write a post for NWP on board elections (AN lead)


Date of Next Meeting

10th April 2014


Any Other Urgent Business