Wednesday, January 6, 2010

CAT producer requests that CAT Board of Directors halt decision-making process until status of its member is brought in line with bylaws

Re: Fw: Formal Complaint about Board Action‏
From: S. C. Burnett (
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Sent: Wed 1/06/10 9:54 AM
To: Dedra Leaf (; brad reed (
Cc: Bernard Sulliban (; Bruce Perry (; RHenry (; Marietta (; Sky Blaylock (;
Ms. Leaf,

I am somewhat perplexed by your answer. You said you forwarded the complaint to the Policy Comittee for investigation and recomendation, does that mean the board as a whole is not going to hear the complaint? Was this the board's decision or a decision you made on behalf of the board? And is this your official answer to the complaint?

I am very disturbed that with the nature of these allegations you would choose to conduct such important business such as budget, policy, and bylaw changes without a legal quorum. Until you can replace your expired membership, you do not have the numbers to conduct business legally, and any actions the board takes at this time could be called into question at a future time.

Sheree Burnett
Cat Producer

From: Dedra Leaf
To: S. C. Burnett
Cc: Bernard Sulliban ; Bruce Perry ; RHenry ; Marietta ; Sky Blaylock
Sent: Tue, January 5, 2010 1:47:45 PM
Subject: Re: Fw: Formal Complaint about Board Action

Dear Ms. Burnett,

Thank you for being concerned about the way our community access station operates.

In answer to your questions outside of the formal complaint: yes, we are still planning to have the meeting on Thursday, but it may need to be postponed a week if we get bad weather. We have a lot of business to conduct this month, including interviewing a new board member, passing our annual budget and passing a bylaw change (the one about our numbers, to which you refer in your complaint) and policy changes to reflect our current contract with the City.

As you can see, it will be a busy meeting. And since we already have plans to address some of the issues raised in your complaint, I will not be adding that to the agenda this month. I have, however, passed the complaint to the Policy Committee for investigation and recommendations for the February Board meeting.
As far as filling the vacant positions on the Board, we have the same problem many NPO boards have, including the Telecom Board: very few people want to commit to the responsibility. We always ask, but so far we're the only ones who have said yes, we will accept the responsibility for this organization.

Dedra Leaf
Community Access Television Board of Directors

--- On Tue, 1/5/10, S. C. Burnett wrote:

From: S. C. Burnett
Subject: Fw: Formal Complaint about Board Action
To: "Dedra Leaf" , "Sky Blaylock" ,
Cc: "Bernard Sulliban" , "RHenry" , "Marietta" , "Bruce Perry"
Date: Tuesday, January 5, 2010, 11:22 AM


I was curious if the board was still planning on meeting this Thursday, or if the meeting would be called off due to the impending snow? I filed the following complaint with Sky. Having received her response, I now wish to escalate this matter to the board level. Is there anyway my complaint appeal could be placed on the agenda for the January 2010 meeting?

Sheree Burnett
Cat Producer

----- Forwarded Message ----
From: Sky Blaylock
To: S. C. Burnett
Sent: Tue, January 5, 2010 8:49:46 AM
Subject: Re: Formal Complaint about Board Action

Dear Sheree,

Thank you for your formal complaint regarding Community Access Television.. The CAT Policies outline the complaint procedure as beginning with the CAT Manager. If my answer doesn't satisfy your complaint you may appeal to the CAT Board of Directors.

Since your question is more directed at the operations of the Board who are the governing body of Community Access Television and are my employer, it is not possible for me to answer your questions individually. My job description is very clear in outlining my responsibilities as far as the CAT Policies and the general operation of the station, including staff oversight. However, any questions you have about how the Board of Directors operate are outside of my purview.

Thank you again for your input and interest in Community Access Television.

Sky Blaylock, CAT Manager
Community Access Television
101 W. Rock Street
Fayetteville, AR 72701
(479) 444-3433
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On Wed, Dec 30, 2009 at 11:24 AM, S. C. Burnett wrote:
Dear Sky,
I would like to lodge the following formal complaint against the CAT Board of Directors.

It has come to my attention through my recent reading of the Community Access Television
Bylaws that the current CAT Board is in direct violation of four sections of Article IV
of the CAT BYLAWS. The sections in question govern the board themselves in regards to Number, Election, Tenure, and Vacancy. Due to their complete lack of adherence to these Bylaws that govern their actions. The board has been operating illegally since May of 2009.

Article IV
Section 4 - TENURE : ” the term of office for a board member is 3 years”.
Section 3 - ELECTION: “members whose terms have expired...shall be replaced through election by the members.”
Section 5 – VACANCY: “ Any vacancy occurring during the year in the board of directors shall be filled within 90 days”

There were a total of five board members that resigned in 2009. Of those five only one was replaced.
On Feb 5th Dylan Ferrell and Jack Kearney both resigned from the board due to other obligations. At this time the board had 90 days to fill these vacancies. They did seat Marietta Camillieri at the following board meeting on March 5th. However they failed to ever fill the other board position. That placed the board in violation of the Vacancy policy and the Number Policy in May of 2009 and they have failed to bring themselves into compliance since then.

Two other board members Casey Milford and Dr. Jinying Yang both resigned and have still not been replaced.

There are currently 3 board members serving on expired terms.
Bernard Sulliban was seated on Feb, 3rd 2005.
Roger Henry was seated on April 6, 2006.
Dedra Leaf was seated on November 2, 2006.
These board members terms have expired and they can no longer be considered
part of the board of directors.

This leaves only two legitimate board members, Bruce Perry who joined on Feb. 7, 2008 and Marrietta Camillieri who was seated on March 5th 2009.

Last month Sky Blaylock alerted the board to their violation of Article IV Section 2. NUMBER , which stated that the board must have 7 to 15 members.. I find it disturbing that the initial reaction to this was not to seek out new membership, but rather to hold a policy committee meeting to amend the Bylaws. A vote to amend the bylaws at this time would create yet another Bylaw violations, as there are not enough legitimate board members to have a 2/3rds majority.

In addition to being in violation of the CAT Bylaws, the board is currently in violation of the city contract,. Section 6 of Resolution 225-09 (the CAT Contract) states “The City may exercise it's right to either temporarily suspend or permanently terminate this Agreement if there is a dispute as to the legal authority of CAT or the person signing the Agreement.” Former President Pancake signed the contract after her term expired as a member of the board.

I hereby request that ALL board business be tabled until the board removes the members who terms have expired and finds additional members to bring themselves back into a legal status, so business can legally continue. I would encourage the board to contact the City to see what steps need to be taken to continue as the public access provider despite this breach of contract.

Sheree Burnett
CAT Producer

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