GAA AGMs will have to be done virtually, clubs and counties told

Clubs and counties in the 26 counties have been reminded that AGMS and annual conventions will have to be staged virtually or “incorporeal” if the current Covid-19 restrictions remain in place.

At levels three, four and five, no indoor gatherings are permitted, whereas at level two up to 50 people can be permitted or up to 100 at large venues providing there is a strict two-metre social distancing seating.

As a result of AGMs and annual conventions going online, the GAA’s Management Committee have had to endorse a number of rule changes given they have been given emergency Congress powers up until December.

The due date for 2020 club memberships has been extended to the end of this month. Where a club has a membership of over 100, 20 members will constitute a quorum for general business.

The GAA have also made provisions for it not being practical for club AGMs and county conventions to take place either physically or virtually. “An ‘incorporeal’ AGM is acceptable within Rule and where the club is confident that business can be carried out transparently and within rule,” the correspondence from Croke Park reads.

A number of conditions will have to be met for that to happen such as members being given the option to submit questions on the secretary’s report and financial statements and those to be answered by the executive within one week of the selected AGM date. The chairperson’s address must also be circulated at least 10 days prior to AGM day.

Election of officers can be done by delivered vote, that is “by means of post, courier, hand delivery or other means on or before the date and time to the place specified on the ballot paper”.

In such a situation, a returning officer, who is not up for election, should be appointed to oversee the voting.

Each eligible voter shall be provided with a declaration, a voting paper and a stamped addressed envelope.

“A vote will be declared invalid if the declaration is not completed and returned in the stamped addressed envelope.”

Interestingly, in regards to county conventions, the GAA have recommended “any matters that can wait to make them wait and remain conservative – 2020 is not the year to consider contentious motions.”