Building Community One Hour at a Time

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Meeting Minutes – 9/8/2016

September 8, 2016 by Board Meeting No Comments

hOur Exchange Ypsilanti Board Meeting 9/8/16


  • In attendance: Jeff Yoder, Elizabeth Warren, Emerson Delacroix, Karen Coleman, Bethany Hayden
  • Absences include: Julianne Bonta, Sue Coles



Note comments from last meeting in italics.

Followed up on previous meetings tasks shown in blue.


  • Approved 11 August 2016 board meeting minutes.
  • Tasks to be completed and by whom from 8/11/16:
  • Bethany


        • Do some businesses outreach work: make materials to send to businesses. Ypsi Ale House.  STOP – see below. Pollutes exchange since we’re still aiming at 501(c)(4) status.
        • Create tiers for businesses and submit ideas to board before the next meeting STOP – see below. Pollutes exchange since we’re still aiming at 501(c)(4) status.


  • Elizabeth
  • Will help get Liz to finish the 501c4 paperwork.  Met with Liz twice.  See new topic for discussion.


        • Assist Sue with the Tax Return.  Liz is going to know how to do this by December.  I suggest that we find someone else.  I have reached out to a colleague who may have a suggestion. We need to file a return even though we won’t owe any taxes.
        • Business Registration Non-profit annual report.  Will try to get this done by the meeting.
        • New Center do a non-profit training.  Too expensive


  • Emerson


        • None


  • Jeff
  • Update Orientation slideshow to ask that members remove their offers/request after they’ve been filled. Was awaiting for language on donation to be approved – Move to tasks for this month.


        • Forward copy of email to Bryan with the wording on our annual donationDONE
        • Link gDrive documents to public – move to tasks


  • Julianne


        • Update handbook with new donation changes awaiting approval of language
        • Update other documentation, materials, application, annual donation by auditing our documentation and where materials are located  awaiting approval of language, but has auditing all documents.


  • Karen


        • None


  • Sue


        • Got to Sept MAoTB meetingWill try to make the meeting on October
        • Meet with Heather Wysor to be a signer on bank account –  met with Heather and got documents signed by Jeff.  I now am a signer on the account.  I will work on getting online access to statements and getting a debit card.
        • Get debit cards for bank accountin process
        • Assist Elizabeth with the Tax Return – I believe we are still waiting to complete the non-profit registration.  Then we can do taxes.


  • Carry-over topic: Insurance – Elizabeth needs to file 501(c)4.  Eliz actually volunteered to get LIZ to do this.  We are progressing.
  • New Topic: Issues related to 501c4 status (Eliz):
  • Benefit to federal non-profit status: don’t have to file tax returns.  We already don’t need to file state returns, regardless, because our revenue is so small.  We would not owe federal taxes, either, but would have to file.
  • 501c4 status is not in any way guaranteed.  We have to file an application and it may be denied – many time banks have been denied, although the trend seems to be toward allowing them.  The issue is, essentially, whether the timebank is operating as a business vs. an organization that   promotes the common good and general welfare of the community as a whole.


NOTE THAT THERE IS A SPECIFIC IRS RULING ON POINT (albeit very old) – a community cooperative organization formed to facilitate the exchange of personal services among members is operating primarily for the private benefit of its members and is not exempt from federal tax as a social welfare organization under IRC 501(c)(4). Rev. Rul. 78-132, 1978-1 C.B. 157.


  • .  There is not a bright line rule but factors that tend to show a business are:


        • primarily benefits a private group of citizens  (members)
          • Members save money
          • Members experience increased community feeling
        • Members pay dues
        • Tangible items are exchanged – there is also a sales tax issue there.
        • Money or property inures to any individual
        • Services are offered or provided in order to promote a business – e.g.: a self-employed member uses the timebank to promote her business.  Ask Chris
        • each member enjoys economic benefits precisely to the extent they used and paid for services
        • Members feel they are paying for services in some way.
        • Hours exchanged in order to save money
        • Paid staff
        • Hours can be exchanged like currency
      • Factors that tend to show general welfare are:
        • A neighborhood or community is changed for the better
        • Promoting service through other community organizations
        • Very nominal fees
        • Better: no fees
        • Uncompensated BOD
        • Similar services are exchanged, although disparate services have been allowed.  Services should be in the nature of what members would readily provide to a neighbor or family member without compensation – primarily domestic or personal services
        • No contractual obligations are established
        • Lots of members have way more hours served than hours received
        • Hour-for-hour, especially for services that are of DISSIMILAR value!
        • Hours given in order to motivate continued volunteerism
        • No paid staff
        • Members perceive the value of the timebank to be a community value, rather than a personal value
        • There is no limit on the time for receiving services, i.e., there could be a gap of several years between the time that a member provides services and the time when the member first receives services
        • Members cannot assign hours to others (except family)
        • Members make the exchanges and evaluate them
        • Members not denied services based on negative hours balance

Here is the summary provided by a law professor who runs a clinic in CA that assists complementary economic models, like timebanks:

Summary – Regulatory Rulings:

  1. Operation of a Time Bank as a program within an existing nonprofit organization will

not affect the nonprofit status of the organization if the bank serves the charitable

purposes that formed the basis for the original tax exemption or if the Time Bank itself

qualifies for exempt status. This would seem to favor operating a Time Bank as a

program of an existing nonprofit organization rather than as a new independent


  1. An organization will not qualify for tax exempt status if a substantial part of its activities consist of the exchange of services among its members because this serves private rather than public interests. This favors both (1) the operation of a Time Bank in the context of a broader based nonprofit organization to reduce the risk that service

exchanges would be considered a substantial part of the overall activities, and (2) the

operation of a Time Bank that is totally open to the public rather than adopting a

membership structure.

  1. It may not be sufficient to open the Time Bank to participation by all in the community.

It may be necessary to show actual widespread benefit to the community or the

charitable group.

  1. The IRS may focus on the economic benefit of the services to the recipient, and find

them to be taxable.



  • NO PAID “STAFF” or anybody called staff
  • New Topic: Update Language for Donation from Bryan Adato
  • We no longer have a membership fee.  Instead we have an annual suggested donation of $25.
  • *hOur Exchange Ypsilanti is committed to our community. We do not charge a membership fee, but we welcome your donation of any amount. If you are unable to make a donation, we ask that you make a conscious effort to spread the word about hOur Exchange Ypsilanti. Let your family and friends know the kinds of services you receive and please share your positive experience with your neighbors. Monetary donations are what enable hOur Exchange Ypsilanti to provide brochures and to sustain our website. Donations also support our future plan to provide volunteer insurance to our members while they help neighbors. Thank you for your support!


  • Other new business: Jeff moved and Eliz seconded that we no longer require any set donation or membership fee (good stick), nor any set hours donation to the timebank.  Membership is open to community and members only need to go through orientation and have 2 qualifying references.  Passed unanimously.


  • Business Outreach Report – Bethany null
  • Outreach Report – Emerson


        • As of today we have 121 members
          • 2 new members
          • 2 renewed with hours
        • As of today we have 4127 hours exchanged (133 since last month)
        • As of today we have 15 members who are currently outstanding.


  • Treasury Report – Sue (absent)


        • Received $ in August


  • Next meeting at Sue’s at 6:30 on 10/13/16.  Plus the retreat on 9/18/16 at 9:00-noon at Sue’s.
  • Potluck snacks
  • Liz running (agenda up to her)
  • To do for next month
  • Bethany


        • Update brochure


  • Elizabeth


          • Continuing business registration of the non-profit for the renewal.


  • Emerson


          • Clarify tasks under the new donation regime


  • Jeff


        • Update Orientation slideshow to ask that members remove their offers/request after they’ve been filled. Was awaiting for language on donation to be approved
        • Link gDrive documents to public
        • Disable report of accounts receivable in order to facilitate the whole donation/evangelism thing.
        • Draft updated bylaws
        • Email Bryan and board with new lang


  • Julianne


        • Update handbook with new donation changes
        • Update other documentation, materials, application, annual donation by auditing our documentation and where materials are located


  • Karen


        • Show up


  • Sue


        • Got to Sept MAoTB meeting
        • Assist Elizabeth with the Tax Return


  • Next meeting:


      • amend bylaws re fees.
      • Need new brochures
  • Eliz moved to adjourn and everyone agrees.


Jeff, president and co-founder of hOur Exchange Ypsilanti, strives to bring community together through shared experience. He loves the city of Ypsilanti and wants to see it thrive.

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