Bid to more than double number trustees on Board of Deputies falls short

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Bid to more than double number trustees on Board of Deputies falls short

Latest efforts by the communal organisation to revise its constitution would have led to 11 trustees instead of five

A Board of Deputies plenary, with President Marie van der Zyl (second left)
A Board of Deputies plenary, with President Marie van der Zyl (second left)

An attempt to more than double the number of trustees of the Board of Deputies fell short on Sunday, even though a majority voted for the change.

The Board’s latest effort to revise its constitution – a process now entering its ninth year – would have led to 11 trustees, up from the current five, but Deputies sent the plans back to the drawing board. A two-thirds majority (66 percent) is needed, but on 61 percent voted for the change.

Treasurer Stuart MacDonald sounded a note of exasperation, saying the vote “will set us back and cost the Board more time and money, yet again”.

Working group chair Ben Crowne said ratification would “strengthen the credibility of the Board as a serious decision-making body” but that “a continued failure to do so, after nine years of debate, could do the reverse”.

Critics including Vicki Harris of Hampstead Garden Suburb Synagogue, Bob Festenstein of Prestwich Hebrew Congregation, Laurence Julius of Holland Park Synagogue and Mary Regnier-Leigh of Western Marble Arch Synagogue said the proposals would transfer “unreasonable power” to trustees.


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