A proposed merger between the Shawnee Economic Foundation Development (SEDF) and the Greater Shawnee Area Chamber of Commerce has been pushed back a few weeks to be sure the process is being navigated properly.

A proposed merger between the Shawnee Economic Foundation Development (SEDF) and the Greater Shawnee Area Chamber of Commerce has been pushed back a few weeks to be sure the process is being navigated properly.

SEDF Executive Director Tim Burg said a special call meeting originally planned for SEDF unit holders Friday was changed to Jan. 10 to ensure SEDF is in full compliance and is following the correct steps.

“Attorneys working on the proposed merger had determined that we were not in compliance with the State Statutes tied to dissolution of a organization such as the SEDF,” he said.

The SEDF’s by-laws — which are several decades old — didn’t align with the state guidelines, which require that no special call meeting can be held until after a 20-day period from the date of record (notification date), Burg said.

“The State Statutes are what our leadership will be following, rather than the SEDF by-laws,” he said.

The State Statute also required that the meeting had to be held no later than 40 days after the notification date, Burg said, so leadership tapped on the brakes a bit and rescheduled the special call meeting for Jan. 10, which is the same day as the regularly scheduled SEDF Board meeting.

The SEDF Board has already approved a resolution to enter into the merger — based upon the results of the unit holders' votes.

“Right now we are waiting to review the vote,” he said.

Burg said SEDF unit holders have a few options on how to go about casting their votes.

“They can vote electronically, by mailing in a hard copy of the ballot, or by attending the Jan. 10 special call meeting and voting in person,” he said.

After the ballots are tabulated, SEDF’s Board of Directors will determine what course of action to take from there.

Background

Over the last two years there have been ongoing community discussions regarding a merger of the

Greater Shawnee Chamber of Commerce and the Shawnee Economic Development Foundation.

Those discussions have intensified over the last few months and the matter is now under formal consideration by the membership of both entities.

According to next week's City Commission agenda, the Chamber and SEDF would merge into a new entity that is presently called “Shawnee Forward” and combine their assets.

“In time, the business affairs of the former entities would be concluded and the former entities would be dissolved,” the agenda reads. “The new organization would be led by a board of directors comprised of members of each of the present boards.”

Watch for updates.