The 2020-2021 HUTAC General Assembly
What is the HUTAC General Assembly and why does it matter?
Before you delve into the minutes of the 2020-2021 HUTAC General Assembly meeting, we would like to briefly explain what the GA is and why it is important to you as a member of the HUTAC community.
The GA is an annual gathering of the HUTAC community which allows members to:
- Find out about the activities of the community and achievements of the Board during the previous year, including, most crucially in current times, the decisions made that impact the future of our organisation,
- Review the fiscal balance sheet of HUTAC and its financial health, and vote on whether you approve the financial statement of the previous year as presented by the treasurer,
- Share your opinion about the leadership of the organisation and vote prospective leaders into office,
- Ask questions, tackle issues and offer feedback – your input is always welcome and appreciated,
- Reconnect with your fellow HUTACers.
Although the 2020-2021 GA is over, we hope that this document serves to sufficiently inform you about the content of the meeting and look forward to seeing you in future HUTAC gatherings!
In case you have any questions, feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Minutes of the 2020-2021 HUTAC General Assembly
Date: Saturday, 26 February 2022
Location: Online, due to ongoing COVID-19-related restrictions at the time
Time: 15:00 – 16:30 CET
Participants: 6, of which 5 are Huygens Scholarship recipient members
Present Board Members
Catalina Iorga, president of the Board, Laura Tufis, HUTAC secretary and marketing director, and Kollol Aguan, HUTAC treasurer, were in attendance representing the leadership team. The president took responsibility for chairing the meeting.
Overview of Topics Discussed
The content of discussions, originally based on the meeting agenda shared with all members through the GA invitation email on 8 February 2022, can be boiled down to the following topics:
- Overview of 2020-2021 Activities, Administration and Finances, and Approval of the 2020-2021 Financial Statement,
- Discharge of the 2017-2021 Board and 2017-2021 Advisory Board,
- HUTAC’s Remaining Financial Resources and Future Outline,
- Review of HUTAC’s 2021-2022 Proposed Budget,
- Election of the 2021-2022 HUTAC Board and 2021-2023 Advisory Board,
To ensure a concise and understandable flow, discussions are summarised to the essence of their conclusions and the order of topics is slightly altered from the previously published meeting agenda.
Overview of 2020-2021 Activities, Administration and Finances, and Approval of the 2020-2021 Financial Statement
To start things off, the 2017-2021 Board presented an overview of events held throughout the 2020-2021 term.
As members are aware, these events were held online to help protect public health and to respect the government’s recommendations in response to the continuing outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021.
The Board is proud to highlight the fact that during the 2020-2021 year, despite the HUTAC community’s inability to meet in person, the events were numerous, well attended and feedback from attendees was consistently positive and encouraging. It is understood by the Board that the virtual nature of these events, enabling members to join from the comfort of their homes at any location in the world, was and continues to be a strong selling point which will prove a useful option in the future as well. Therefore, it was highlighted by the Board that even though more face-to-face events are expected to be organised in 2022, online events will continue to be part of the plan going forward.
The details of HUTAC’s 2020-2021 Financial Statement, pertaining to the fiscal year starting on 1 September 2020 and ending on 31 August 2021, was presented by Kollol Aguan, HUTAC treasurer, as follows:
More detailed information on the expenditures made as part of the General Budget, including specifics on Board meetings held during this period, were presented as follows:
Finally, the HUTAC Balance Sheet, detailing the year-by-year accounting information of the association’s equities and liabilities, was presented by Kollol as shown below:
It was approved by the General Assembly in 2018 that the Balance Sheet along with detailed costs and revenues of the year were allowed to be reviewed and scrutinised by an external accounting service instead of the more common internal Audit Committee made up of HUTAC members. This decision was made due to two reasons: (1) the Board having been unable to find proper replacements for outgoing Audit Committee members at the end of the previous year, and more importantly, (2) the need for a more official and independent audit of our finances in preparation for the depletion of government subsidies and associated statutory reporting requirements that is to follow.
The individual directly involved with this review in 2020-2021 is Mr. drs. Jasper Jansen RB, Fiscalist-Bedrijfsadviseur, Blaak Belastingadvies.
His opinion of the organisation’s Financial Statement for 2020-2021 can be summarised as the fact that “the financial statements including balance sheet and profit and loss accounts for the financial year 01/09/2020-31/08/2021 give a true and fair view of the financial position of the association.”
This information was presented to the General Assembly by the treasurer and, following the vote by present and eligible members at the meeting, the 2020-2021 HUTAC Financial Statement was officially approved.
Discharge of the 2017-2021 Board and 2017-2021 Advisory Board
The General Assembly agreed that the Board has handled finances honestly and accurately and worked to the best of their abilities toward the advancement of HUTAC’s interests.
The Board was officially discharged from their 2020-2021 duties but remain in charge as no other candidates were available to take over leadership responsibilities for 2021-2022. The current Board members remain officially registered at the Chamber of Commerce until the next GA.
The current term of Advisory Board members, former HUTAC presidents Andy Golkhandan and Thierry Verheije, has also officially ended but they remain in office to support the Board during the upcoming year.
Two separate votes to discharge the Board and Advisory Board members were taken in succession with all present and eligible members voting in favour.
HUTAC’s Remaining Financial Resources and Future Outline
Following the conclusion of the 2020-2021 retrospective, Board members requested to express their disappointment on the record regarding the low turnout at the GA.
It was agreed by all present members that during this year in particular, despite remarkable enthusiasm shown by members toward HUTAC events, there has been very limited and insignificant engagement by the member base with the overall administrative affairs of the organisation. This is, of course, part of an ongoing trend of recent years, especially since the termination of the Huygens Scholarship Programme and, subsequently, the loss of annual subsidies enjoyed by our organisation until the end of 2016.
As a result, the Board feels that with sufficient leftover budget for approximately another two years, it is important to continue organising high-quality engaging workshops as well as a series of networking events for the members so that we can all celebrate HUTAC’s lasting legacy together before the remaining budget is inevitably exhausted.
Review of HUTAC’s 2021-2022 Proposed Budget
With the above goals in mind, the Board proposes the following budget breakdown for the 2021-2022 year. As mentioned previously, the Board wishes to transition back to the usual in-person gatherings and fun events which HUTAC members have come to know and love over the years; at the same time, the leadership team hopes to take full advantage of the potential of online workshops, aiming to attract those members who have left the Netherlands but are still keen to reconnect with their fellow HUTACers while they take part in yet another exciting and informative HUTAC professional event.
The members present at the GA voted to approve this broad outline with the understanding that individual event details will be communicated by the Board at an appropriate time leading up to each event.
Election of the 2021-2022 HUTAC Board and 2021-2023 Advisory Board
At this stage, with no new applications having been received by the Board in the weeks leading up to the GA meeting, a vote was taken to approve the following members to continue in their current capacity as part of the leadership team for another term:
- Catalina Iorga, as the 2021-2022 president of the Board,
- Laura Tufis, as the 2021-2022 HUTAC secretary and marketing director,
- Kollol Aguan, as the 2021-2022 HUTAC treasurer.
All present and eligible members voted in favour.
Subsequently, the following members were unanimously approved by the GA to remain in their current capacity as members of the Advisory Board, for another term of two years, as required by the HUTAC statute:
- Andy Golkhandan,
- Thierry Verheije.
It was expressed by all members in attendance that the conclusion of the discussions were clear to everyone and, hence, there was no need for a Q&A session.
With no other outstanding matters left to discuss, the meeting was brought to a close by the chair at 16:15 CET.