Colonization Creeps on: 
The new Pacifica Policies for Local Station Boards
Below is the new policy document approved by the Pacifica National Board in March 1998, which has lately begun to refer to itself as the Pacifica Governing Board. This policy, like the name change demonstrates an apparently unabated movement toward centralized autocracy. Not only has there been no movement toward democratic structure, there has been a further rollback of the few vestiges of democracy and local autonomy that remained.

The most progressive part of this miserable document is the part which is taken directly from the government dictated regulations mandating community advisory boards, at the beginning of the document. The most reactionary features have been highlighted in red (emphasis ours.) These include: revocation of the voting rights of staff representatives to the Local Boards -- the only elected representatives in the whole Foundation, in the commonly understood meaning of the word "election."  Also, Local Board members are now required to inform Pacifica management before publishing articles on Pacifica or speaking to the press. Station board delegates to the National Board are now considered "nominees," essentially permitting the National Board the ability to refuse to seat dissident representatives. And, just to make sure there is no possibility of whistle blowing, any board member who violates "confidentiality" may be summarily dismissed.

 -- L.G.

Approved by Board of Directors 3/1/98
Pacifica's Local Advisory Boards play an important role in the life of each station to provide Pacifica and especially the local station manager with a sense of community needs and issues. (according to CPB minimum compliance, see below).

The LAB serves under the direction and guidance of the Pacifica National Governing Board and is monitored by the Chair and Executive Committee. The Pacifica Governing Board shall annually review the LABs performance and certify that they are meeting the Pacifica Policies Governing LABs. If it is determined that a LAB is out of compliance, the Pacifica Board Chair and Executive Committee has the authority to institute reorganization or reconstitution of the LAB.

FEDERAL LAW- CPB  The Local Advisory Board shall carry out such functions as are assigned to it by the Pacifica Foundation Governing Board and shall otherwise comply with the requirement of Section 396(k) of the Communications Act.

Minimum compliance with the Act mandates that the Governing Board must:
A.  1. establish a community advisory board.
      2. undertake a good faith effort to assure that:

        1. To annually review the programming goals of the station and to inform the Governing Board
        if  they are being met. This annual review will be done in conjunction with the Governing Board
        annual program review meeting.
        2. To annually review the service provided by the station and inform the Governing Board of
        the results.
        3. To annually review the effectiveness of station policies regarding special educational and
        cultural needs of the communities served by the station and to inform the Governing Board of
        the results.
        4. To recommend to the Governing Board a process that will allow the station to meet its
        educational and cultural needs.
        5. To annually advise the Governing Board of LAB performance and the roster of the LAB.
        6. To be prepared to represent the station before the community.
        7. To apply professional acumen and expertise on behalf of the station, performing such
        functions as requested by the Governing Board.
        8. Local Advisory Board members may participate in fundraising efforts.
        9. At the direction of the Executive Director, to participate in the annual evaluation of the
        General Manager.
        10. At the direction of the Executive Director, to participate in the search for the General

        1. In no case shall the LAB have any authority to exercise control over the day to day
        management or operations of the stations.
        2. Harmony with the Governing Board.

The LAB shall have duties, responsibilities and powers as derived from the Pacifica by-laws, policies or other statements of the Governing Board. No actions may be taken by the LAB that would pre-empt, in whole or in part, the authority or responsibility of the Governing Board.

REMOVAL of a LAB member shall be either by the Executive Committee of the LAB of by a 2/3 majority vote of LAB members present and voting at a regular or special meeting of the LAB. Written notices shall be given at least 15 days before the meeting to all LAB members specifying the proposed removal and stating, in general terms, the grounds for dismissal. If the LAB fails to remove a non complying member, the Chair of Pacifica's Governing Board may exercise the removal. A LAB member mat be removed for the following reasons:

NUMBER OF MEMBERS  The LAB will consist of no less than twelve (12) nor more than twenty-four (24) members. These members are recruited by the LAB through the Nominating Committee process and should be representative of the communities the station serves.

STATION PERSONNEL Station personnel may serve as ex officio non-voting members of the LAB. Station personnel are defined by the Governing Board as those who are paid a regular salary, or those volunteers who have a regularly scheduled program or who work more than 5 hours per month in programming or in administration on a regular basis. Station personnel who are serving as of this date (3/1/98) may retain their vote until the end of their existing term at which their voting rights are non-renewable.

GENERAL MANAGER  The General Manager serves as an ex officio non-voting member of the LAB. With the LAB Chair the General Manager coordinates and supports the work of the LAB.

ELECTION Each new member shall be elected by a majority vote of the attending members of the LAB for a term of three years. No member shall serve for more than two successive terms.

OFFICERS AND COMMITTEES  There shall be at least a Chair, a Vice Chair, and a Secretary. The standing committees of the LAB are the following: Community Needs Assessment, Development and Membership/Nominating. In addition, LABS may create other committees which are consistent with their function. Chairs are appointed by the LAB Chair with the approval of the LAB. Each LAB Chair will serve on the Council of Chairs which will be convened at least three times a year by the Pacifica Governing Board Chair prior to regular Governing Board meetings.

NOMINATING PROCESS The Membership/Nominating Committee recommends candidates for membership on the LAB as needed. It nominates officers as well. Candidates will be selected from the station signal area. The Membership/Nominating Committee will assure that the composition of the LAB nominees reasonably reflects the diverse needs and interests of the local communities served.

OFFICERS  The LAB shall bi-annually elect officers whose terms will coincide with the Foundation's fiscal year.

NOMINATION TO THE GOVERNING BOARD  The LAB may nominate two members to the Governing Board. A Governing Board term is three years with a limit of two consecutive terms. The National Representative's term on the LAB can be extended to allow for two terms to the National Board. LAB chairs may not serve on the Governing Board.

In order for nominees to be reviewed before the Governing Board meeting where the nominee is to be voted on, resumes or biographical sketches will be sent to the Secretary of the Governing Board at least two months before the Governing Board meeting. A biography and a statement of how the person was selected, the vote and the duly noticed meeting where the nominee was selected will be mandated. These nominees will be evaluated by the Secretary and the Chair of the Governing Board in order to ascertain they meet the eligibility criteria.

EX OFFICIO MEMBERS  Current at-large members of the Pacifica Governing Board residing in the station's signal area are ex officio non-voting members of the LAB

MEETINGS  The LAB shall meet on a regular basis no less often than quarterly, as called by the Chair. The meeting shall have a quorum, which consists of 50% of its voting members.

OPEN MEETINGS  The LAB shall hold open meetings. Reasonable notice to the public shall be given either on the air, on bulletin boards or in station publications. All persons shall be permitted to attend any meeting of the LAB.

The Station Manager must be informed at least 10 days prior to a meeting in order to notify the public. Meetings will be scheduled at a consistent time i.e. every third Monday of every month.

Guidelines for open meetings

EXECUTIVE SESSION  The LAB may, by majority vote, call an executive session to consider matters relating to personnel. litigation ot matters involving confidential relationships or proprietary matters. In the event that an executive session is held, the reason shall be announced and noted in the meeting minutes.

The LAB chair in the signal area where the Governing Body is holding its meeting will participate in the meeting on behalf of the Council of Chairs as a non-voting participant.


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