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BOTLab committee meeting 25 Aug 2014

Attendees

  • David H
  • Patrick N
  • Matt V
  • David W (minute-taker)

Apologies sent from Barney L.

Topics discussed

  • AGM:
    • Date: According to the constitution (item 20) we are required to give 14 clear days' notice of the date of the AGM. MV kindly offers to set up a Doodle poll to set up a date that the 5 of us can make, after which we can advertise it to the other members. Plan is to start at 7pm with a 30min AGM followed by a Hackspace general meeting for people who want to stay around.
    • Committee elections: BL has announced his intention to stand down from the committee. Following the constitution the longest-serving 1/3 (rounded up) of the remainder have to put themselves up for reelection too; this would be DW plus one of DH, MV or PN (selected by lot).
    • Voting method: Following discussion on 8 April, we plan to:
      • Restrict the size of the committee to 5 people
      • Run “approval voting” (i.e. elected if #for > #against) for each candidate standing
      • If there are more approved candidates than vacancies, select successful candidates by lot
    • Venue: MV will ask Tarim about the availability of the PM Studio to avoid distractions found in the Hackspace.
  • Abbreviated accounts for 2012-2013: DW talked MV and DH through the abbreviated accounts prepared by PN and himself. They approved the accounts, and BL previously gave approval by email, so the accounts are thus approved. DW will submit to Companies House ASAP.
  • Accountant: DW explained the situation: he has been in touch with 2 accountants, TaxAssist in Chippenham and Simon Johnson at Coopportunity in Bristol, the latter of whom have offered a lower price (estimated to be towards the lower end of £300-£500 + VAT) to prepare detailed accounts. MV knows of another accountant [subsequently: Andrew Riddington] who does accounts for the Bristol Bike Project, who might be able to do ours as well for reasonable cost, and offers to ask him how much he might charge. General agreement that we should get detailed accounts prepared by an accountant to ensure we are complying with all necessary legal aspects and to assure members that BOTLab is being run well - agreement to go with the cheaper of MV's accountant and Coopportunity.
  • Contacting HMRC to clarify the situation with respect to filing a Corporation Tax return and paying Corporation Tax: Agreed to ask the accountant for their advice in the first instance before contacting HMRC directly. Mike Harris' statement of the situation is as follows (email to DW 29/7/2014):

“I told HMRC that we were a not for profit organisation running like a small club or society. At this point (in 2010/11) we weren't selling anything or making any profit. They said that they would mark us down as this for 5 years and that we were to tell them should this change. This meant that we wouldn't have to complete a Corporation Tax return, and didn't for the first few years.

Then in 2011/12, we started selling stuff to people, so we lost that exemption. When I spoke to HMRC towards the end of 2012, beginning of 2013, they said that if our profits were under £500, which they were, then they would not require us to make a payment of Corporation Tax. Thus we didn't. I do not have my notes as to whether this also meant we didn't have to submit a CT return.”

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