General SMiSA News

SMiSA Request for 10000 Hours Direction on Rangers

We have heard from day one that the 10000 Hours proposal is about the fans, their opinions and how this will influence the decision making process at the club. However to date we have seen very little from 10000 Hours to suggest this is anything other than telling the fans what they want to hear.
Given that 10000 Hours could very soon be in control of the club we have today asked Richard Atkinson by way of a demonstration of intent to contact the members (either those who have pledged or those who have submitted a Direct Debit Mandate form) of 10000 Hours and seek direction on establishing a position on the NewCo Rangers issue.

You may be aware that the method stated in 10000 Hours Articles for members to instruct the board is by way of generating ‘Directions’ (Clause 66 in their document if you care to have a look). We understand this exercise is not exactly the way things will operate in practice but we believe in executing this 10000 Hours will at least be a making a start and demonstrating intent by way of consulting with supporters.

We would envisage this need only take the form of a simple yes or no question on the issue - 'Should a NewCo Rangers be permitted entry into the SPL?'

We would then expect 10000 Hours to make public the outcome and maintain that position should they successfully conclude the purchase of the 52% shareholding or at least until further Direction is given from the membership.

We welcome your support in this request. We see no reason why this exercise should not be taken on if 10000 Hours do in fact believe in supporter involvement at St.Mirren. We also look forward to understanding how St. Mirren supporters see this issue.

SMiSA update on New 10000 Hours Proposals

Following from our statement dated 11th May 2012 announcing our withdrawal of support in principle for 10000 Hours we would like to update St.Mirren supporters on recent developments relating to the current remodelled proposal.

We would like to record Gordon Scott has been good enough to meet with us on a number of occasions and we would like to thank him for making the effort in engaging with the Trust in a manner that had previously been sadly lacking. We are encouraged to learn that the purchase price has been challenged however 10000 Hours remain unable to offer us anything in writing confirming this and no further detail other than the information publicly available on their website has been supplied. Our position therefore has not changed.

Having reviewed what is currently available we have to ask how this model genuinely empowers St.Mirren fans joining the CIC. Board positions are already being filled. How can this be the case in a co-operative? Co-operative principles state that ‘Co-operatives are democratic organisations controlled by their members, who actively participate in setting their policies and making decisions Men and women serving as elected representatives are accountable to the membership’. When were the elections?

Are St.Mirren fans being empowered? You could be forgiven for thinking this is merely a method for transferring power from one board at the club to another ……. And using supporters money to fund it.

SMiSA Comments on 10000 Hours Articles of Association

We have been reviewing 10000 Hours Articles of Association which have been available on their website. This version of the articles is incomplete and contains no information relating to the borrowing in the proposal therefore a full review is not possible although it is accepted that this document has been issued as a draft. We would hope that all St.Mirren fans considering joining the CIC have a good read over the Articles and debate with other St.Mirren fans on their worth.
There are some similarities with the SMiSA constitution however the procedure for decision making in the 10000 Hours proposal is very different. In SMiSA it is the members who make the decisions, the Trust Board (Committee) run the Trust on behalf of the members and all key decisions are made by members by way of a vote. This has both its plus and minus points. On the positive side this is very democratic but the drawback is this can be slow and there are times when members do not return votes so we have to do things twice.

In the CIC proposals the decisions will be made by the CIC Board and Directors powers can only be restricted by members passing specific resolutions on a particular subject (Clause 9.1).This is in our opinion less democratic than the rules SMiSA operate under. It would certainly speed up the decision making process but could be exploited unless the members are fully aware at all times of the decisions being taken. How will the CIC board demonstrate transparency in their decision making process?  To balance this the CIC Board will take instructions termed as ‘Directions’ (Clause 66) from the members. It is noted that a two thirds majority will be required to approve a Direction – we would request that this should be amended to 51% which is in line with the majority ruling as noted in Clause 14.1 on how Directors make decisions.

There appears to be little to protect the St.Mirren supporters Annual Subscription being set at whatever the CIC Board choose (Clause 37.1). We believe that the current minimum of £10 a month should be reduced however Richard Atkinson has ignored this request so far and has been unable to inform why the minimum amount is being set at £10. We would insist on some clause being written in to cap the minimum monthly payment at the time of joining being maintained until the debt is fully cleared. By doing this it means supporters capable of joining the CIC will not be priced out of being members in the future. This should not have to depend on Directions from the members it should be set into the rules from the outset.

SMiSA Withdraws Support From 10000 Hours Proposal

ImageWe can confirm that SMiSA is currently withdrawing support in principle from the 10000 Hours proposal. SMiSA has been considering an approach from 10000 Hours to provide from its accumulated members subscriptions a substantial up front contribution towards the funding of the share purchase but key information relating to the purchase has not been supplied to allow us to carry out a thorough review of the proposition and this, coupled with the failure of 10000 Hours to engage with SMiSA following a request for information in December 2011, has resulted in us seeking direction from our members on this issue. Should sufficient detailed information be made available to us at a future date we will consider this accordingly.

SMiSA fully and actively supports fan ownership of football clubs and takes responsibility for doing everything it can to ensure the future financial stability of SMFC under any new majority shareholder. We would strongly encourage all St.Mirren fans to fully investigate all aspects of the 10000 Hours project prior to any commitment towards this.

Thompson Wins Player of the Year Award

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SMiSA is pleased to announce that striker Steven Thompson has won our St. Mirren Player of the Year award for season 2011-12.  Steven will be presented with his award on the pitch following the game vs Inverness Caledonian Thistle on this Saturday, 5th May.

From everyone at SMiSA, we would like to congratulate Steven on his award and thank him for a great season's performance which has seen him score to date 15 goals, including 12 in the league.  We would also like to thank everyone who took their time to nominate their choice for the award.

If there are any other supporters groups who would like to present their present their awards on Saturday's game alongside SMiSA's then please email us here and we will look to organise that for you.

National Football Suppporters Charter Workshop - 10th May @ St Mirren Park

Image SMiSA would like to pass on word that there will be a workshop at St Mirren Park as part of a consultation process to develop a National Football Supporters Charter.  The workshop will take place at on Thursday 10th May from 7pm to 9.30pm, with a maximum of 30 participants.
This project is supported by Supporters Direct Scotland as members of the Joint Review Group which was put together to co-ordinate the football industry’s response to the challenges of behaviour in football.
 
The charter will be an agreement between fans and clubs along with football and safety authorities to develop each other’s rights and responsibilities. This will be achieved by joint discussion which itself will be a major tool for the establishment of dialogue between the different groups involved in football.

The objective of the charter is to work with supporters and supporters’ groups alongside leagues, clubs, police and safety authorities in order to create a better relationship and understanding between these groups.
 
It is therefore vital that the project speaks and listens to as many fans as possible to get a breadth of opinion on the subject. In order to do this there will be a series of regional workshops (including the one at St. Mirren Park) which will focus on the positive aspects of being a supporter along with making sure that supporters are able to have input into the
project in other ways.
 
If you would like to attend the workshop, please send an email to [email protected] saying you would like to do so and we will endeavour to secure you a place at the event.

SMiSA Player of the Year Award 2012

Image SMiSA are now accepting nominations for their St. Mirren Player of the Year award of the 2011/2012 season.  

Nominations can be made by anyone with an email address, whether they are SMiSA members or not.  Nominations should be sent here, clearly stating both your name and the name of the player that you wish to nominate.

We will accept nominations received up until 8pm on the closing date of Sunday, April 29th, when the vote will close and the winner announced a short time after.

Please only send one nomination per email address, multiple nominations from the same address WILL NOT be counted.

Reminder on SMiSA Post-Out Dated 11-03-12

Following the information posted out last week we would like to remind all members to vote and return the paper in the prepaid envelope as soon as possible. Insufficient returns will result in us having to reissue this information back out to everyone so please take the small amount of time it takes to do this.

Thank you in advance.

SMiSA