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Gopher Tortoise Stakeholder group Governance- principles and rules Incorporating material approved by the stakeholder meeting, 9 December 2005 and additional.

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Presentation on theme: "Gopher Tortoise Stakeholder group Governance- principles and rules Incorporating material approved by the stakeholder meeting, 9 December 2005 and additional."— Presentation transcript:

1 Gopher Tortoise Stakeholder group Governance- principles and rules Incorporating material approved by the stakeholder meeting, 9 December 2005 and additional changes approved by the steering Committee up to 23 March 2007.

2 Three parallel tracks for integrated GT management and conservation Listing Biol. Review Panel GT 2 Team Stakeholder forum

3 Steering committee FWC Tech support Reps + Alts Interest Groups Facilitator GT Group structure

4 Questions to answer What is the purpose of the group? Who are the members? How is membership changed? How are interests represented? How will we make decisions? How will we handle dissent? Who speaks for the group? How will we resolve disputes? Group logistics and operation? What is our agreed code of conduct?

5 Agrees Gopher tortoise management and conservation involves inherent differences of opinion about best action. There are levels of uncertainty regarding various solutions and needs to be addressed as part of an adaptive management process The current gopher management process affects developers, consultants, county and state agencies, conservation organizations, land owners and managers and the concerned public.

6 Gopher habitat loss Provides substantial economic benefits, homes, business etc. Results in distressing levels of gopher mortality Permitting, relocation and mitigation efforts need to be re-examined The effectiveness on gopher tortoise persistence into the future needs to be monitored

7 Article 1. Purpose of the group i.The Gopher tortoise stakeholders group is a self constituted voluntary association of individuals, organizations and entities sharing a common interest in the management and conservation of gopher tortoises and their associated community. ii.The group will receive technical and facilitation support from FWC. iii.The group will discuss issues, explore common interests, evaluate scientific information, review and comment upon proposals for regulations, management activities and conservation of gopher tortoises.

8 Article 2. Members of the group i.The group membership is open to any interested individual ii.Members will provide their contact information (preferably electronic) to a group facilitator who will maintain a list of member contacts and provide all members on that list with all information pertaining to the group iii.Members may withdraw at any time by advising the facilitator to remove their name iv.Members agree to adhere to this governance structure and the representational model proposed following:

9 Article 3. a. Representational structure The group membership consists of individuals and entities associated including the following ten interest groups: i.Primary Industry ii.Conservation entities iii.Land development Community iv.State and County government agencies v.Research and academic interests vi.Commercial service interests vii.Private Landowners and Property rights interests viii.Large Federal and state lands managers ix.General concerned public x.Animal advocacy

10 Article 3 b. Representation i.Each of the ten entities listed previously shall be represented by 2 voting members and one alternate. ii.Each interest group shall designate who are its 2 voting members and alternate. iii.Voting members and Alternates represent members and engage in discussion. iv.Full voting members may designate a proxy who may take their place and vote in their place at meetings. v.No voting member or alternate may represent more than 2 votes.

11 Article 3 b. cont. vi. Representatives shall be selected from among the interest groups and initially approved by acclamation of the whole membership. vii.The voting reps and alternates shall constitute the Steering committee and be the decision making body of the group. viii.Additional interest groups and representatives may be designated and approved by the steering committee. ix.Representatives must be present to be nominated and considered.

12 Article 3 c. Representation i.Members shall channel their interests and concerns thru any representative. ii.Representatives agree to commit the time and resources to fulfill their representative role and to actively solicit and present the views of their interest group.

13 Article 3 d. Representation iii.Representatives will seek to communicate openly and honestly about the needs of their interest groups. If needs are not addressed, they will not be served. iv.[The article on changing steering committee members remains unresolved- action by the present steering committee is anticipated- P. Ross facilitator] v.A Member of the Steering Committee who has missed two (2) consecutive meetings, may be asked to resign.

14 Steering committee FWC Tech support Reps + Alts Interest Groups Facilitator GT Group structure

15 Article 3 e.Representation Primary Industry : J. McGlincy (FL Forestry Assoc), R. Concoby (Phosphate Industry) M. Gosa (Farm Bureau) alternate, Conservation organizations: L. Macdonald (Defenders of Wildlife), Boyd Blihovde (Gopher tortoise council), W. Thomson (TNC) alternate Land Development: D. Rillstone (Fl Chamber Commerce), S. Godley (Homebuilders assoc.), K. Ramsey alternate Government Agencies: B. Burgeson (Collier Co.), B. Kaiser (Hillsborough Co.), S. Farnsworth (Citrus Co.) alternate. Research and Academic :), M. Aresco (FSU), L. Wendland (UF), L. Smith (Jones Cntr.) alternate Commercial Service (consultants): M. Palmer, D. Gordon, R. Clementi alternate. Private land owners: S. Shea (St Joe), MC Davis (Nokuse Plantation), J. Handley alternate Military, federal or state land managers:, C. Sekerak/ S. Griep US Forest Svc., Chris Becker FL DEP- State parks, Kathleen Gault (Eglin AFB) General Public: R. Eagan, J. Bierly, R. Ashton (GTCI) Animal Protection: J. Hobgood (HSUS), Ilke Daniel (HS Vero Bch, ) L. Bevan (HSUS) alternate.

16 Article 4. Technical support The group calls upon FWC (and FWC agrees) to provide technical support for its operations: a.With facilitation of meetings and group organization b.With scientific and management information pertaining to gopher tortoises from FWC staff

17 Article 5.a. Decision making Decisions of the group shall be made by the steering committee who shall seek to accommodate diverse views and find areas of agreement and common ground i.Where possible decisions shall be adopted by consensus and acclamation ii.The group will seek guidance of a facilitator to make decisions in an equitable manner using techniques of: Ranking, criteria evaluation, proportional voting etc.

18 Article 5a cont. iii. Where necessary, ‘soft’ decisions can be made by 50% +1 of the voting members. (soft decisions are routine, procedural and organizational matters) iv. Hard final decisions will be made by approval of 75 % of the voting representatives present. (Hard decisions are those important matters where the group will express its opinion or take action to materially affect gopher management) v. Any voting member may call for a ‘hard’ decision vote. vi. Votes will be by voice vote unless any representative calls for a secret written ballot

19 Article 5.b. Dissent i.Any representative in the minority of an approved decision of the group may immediately call for their dissent to be recorded. ii.They shall immediately at that time draft in writing and present their dissenting view and that dissent shall be appended to the approved decision and become a permanent part of that decision. iii.There being no dissent, or a dissenting view being immediately presented and attached to the decision, the decision shall then be closed and can only be reopened for discussion, including dissent, by approval of the steering committee.

20 Article 6. Who speaks for the group? i.Individual members right to express themselves and their own opinions shall not be infringed in any way. ii.However, individuals shall not claim to speak on behalf of the group unless explicitly authorized to do so by confirmed decision of the group. iii.Communications from the group to any other entity shall be from “the gopher tortoise stakeholder group” or a designated spokesperson “----- on behalf of the gopher tortoise stakeholder group”

21 Article 7 Dispute resolution i.Members and representatives shall endeavor to resolve disputes through reasonable discussion and through the adopted decision making process. ii.In the event that a dispute is unresolved by these means the matter shall be declared unresolved and moot and ’laid upon the table’ or ‘parked’ i.e. set aside without resolution or further discussion. iii.A matter ‘laid upon the table’ can only be reopened by decision of the steering committee.

22 Article 8. Group logistics a.Meetings- i.the group shall convene meetings at intervals determined by group decision ii.Meetings will receive official public advance notice and all members will notified at least 3 weeks in advance of meetings and agendas. iii.Meetings shall be open to anyone iv.Agenda and decisions at meetings shall be by the representatives.

23 Article 8 a. cont. meetings vi.Provision will be made at meetings for comment and input from any member and from the public vii.The group requests facilitation of meetings from FWC viii.A summary record and record of decisions will be prepared and distributed within 10 days of each meeting.

24 Article 8b. Quorum The work of the group can only be achieved if a sufficient representation of the members is present therefore: i.For any meeting a quorum will be ¾ of the voting members (i.e 15 of 20) and at least one representative from each interest group. ii.Participation by telephone or video link is ok

25 Article 8 c. Group logistics i.Intercessional work- recognizing the difficulty and inconvenience of scheduling meetings that all representatives and members can attend, the group intends to conduct much of its work intercessionally. ii.The Steering Committee will communicate by e-mail, phone and other means as needed. iii.To facilitate intercessional work, FWC will provide a public Sharepoint site accessible to all members at which documents, discussion, records, decisions and other material can be made freely available

26 Sharepoint A simple web based tool Access thru any web browser/computer Post documents, share discussions Express views compile opinions.

27 SHAREPOINT ACCESS user: gopher.publicgopher.public Password: Caddy74 (with a capital ‘C’) All users currently have modification privileges (except read-only docs)

28 Article 9. Code of conduct i.The group, members and representatives declare their commitment to a process that fairly and equitably balances the interests of all participants and the conservation of gopher tortoises. ii.The group will conduct its business with courtesy and consideration for all views. iii.Members will strive for candid discussion of difficult issues in face-to-face situations. Confrontational public approaches are recognized as generally unproductive to the process.

29 Article 9 cont. iv.Members will make every effort to be flexible and open to new ideas and to the input of fellow Members. No extreme positions that would result in dramatic win/lose proposals for Steering Committee will be introduced into discussions. v.Members will fairly represent their own and other’s views in their interactions with the media and use the media to advance the progress of successful gopher tortoise conservation.

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