National Farmers' Union Scotland votes for change at annual general meeting

Members of the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) Scotland voted through a number of constitutional changes at this year’s annual general meeting on Thursday, 11 February. 

Following extensive consultations in recent months, the following changes were approved:

• Formalising a proxy vote system for the election of committee chairman and regional chairman
• Removal of the five-year rule for board members to be replaced with a five year limitation on any regional chairman position or committee chairman position
• The requirement for members who wish to stand for election as committee chairman or regional chairman to be nominated at least five days in advance of the election

Meanwhile, current vice president Rob Livesey was re-elected to his position on Friday 12 February, after first being elected in 2013. Nominations were opened in November for one of two positions of vice president of the union, with only one nomination being received by the closing date of 14 December.

As a result, Livesey was the only nomination at Friday’s council meeting.

Under NFU Scotland’s terms, those elected to the position of vice president will initially serve for two years before the post reverts to an annual election.

Dumfriesshire farmer Andrew McCornick was elected as vice president in February 2015 for the first time, meaning that his position was not opened again for re-election.

“The president and vice presidents work together as a strong effective team ensuring that Scottish agriculture is heard and listened to in the political corridors of Europe, Westminster and Holyrood,” said NFU Scotland chief executive Scott Walker.

“Alongside committee and regional chairmen, this team influences the rules and regulations that impact on farmers, growers and crofters and work to develop opportunities that will allow us to secure a fair margin on what is produced on Scottish farms.

“Good governance is an ongoing process and the agreed changes are largely a tidying up exercise. NFU Scotland’s constitution is always being reviewed and on that basis these changes were discussed at regional meetings held last year and the start of this year. They have now been approved by the membership and will now be implemented.”

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