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Governance steps forward, November 2012

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Governance steps forward, November 2012

I just wanted to state publicly here that we've taken a couple of steps forward with our governance and conflict/dispute resolution.

* We have created a Colorado Nonprofit Corporation to be responsible for Warmshowers.org. It's called Warmshowers.org. We'll have to figure out some banking changes and change our paypal account to complete this.
* We have worked diligently on the [Conflict and problem resolution policy](http://www.warmshowers.org/faq#t24n19185) and are gradually implementing it. We now have two trusted volunteers who are willing to do this kind of investigation (Thanks Alex and Russell!)
* We now track all member accusations in a private ticketing system.
* I have started the process of applying for US 501(c)(3) nonprofit status, which would make donations easier and also make tax time a bit easier (it requires only a tiny report each year). This may not be possible to achieve, but I will probably try. 501(c)(3) also makes us more credible as a nonprofit, and may affect our ability to get liability insurance.
* Accounting for Warmshowers.org is now managed separately from my personal financial reporting and is accessible by other responsible parties on the WS leadership team.

Our [current to-do list in the governance area](https://github.com/rfay/Warmshowers.org/issues?labels=Governance%2FMgt&page=1&sort=updated&state=open) is publicly visible, and you can participate in any of these by commenting here or [creating a free github account](https://github.com/signup/free) and commenting there.

Key items on the list:

* Creating a more formal Terms of Use which will clearly explain that members contact other members at their own discretion and risk. Make people sign off on it at signup.
* Forming a board of directors
* Creating the legal organizing documents for the new corporation
* Applying for 501(c)(3) tax exempt status
* Obtain corporate liability insurance if possible

Thanks to all of you for your past and future work on this.

-Randy