Constitution of Urabba Parks/Introductory Speech

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Introductory Speech to the Urabba Parks Proprietary Limited Constitution Bill 2021[edit | edit source]

The future of society as we know it depends on inclusive and effective governance structures.  Faced with the difficult issues of a climate emergency, and a global health, economic and social crisis, we need more representative governance frameworks and responsible management structures to deliver services which are relevant to our needs as people.  Moving forward we need to combine charity, which is the intent of improving the living situation of other people, and democracy, which is the input of the lived experiences of those people into the making of decisions.

This Bill sets out the new Constitution for Urabba Parks Proprietary Limited (Urabba Parks), which I had registered back on 3 July 2012 to own and operate Urabba Street Reserve in Rankins Springs, New South Wales.  The new Constitution establishes Urabba Parks as a charity of charities, the constituent charities being called ‘associations’, under the jurisdiction of a Corporate Parliament, Executive Government and Judicature.

Establishing an entity on a jurisdictional basis would require the limitation of the powers of the entity to be those authorised under the internal law of the entity, and the recognition of a judicial power having jurisdiction over the internal law, as separate from legislative and executive powers. This has been my intention with Urabba Parks ever since purchasing the quarter-acre block known as Urabba Street Reserve on 10 August 2011.  However, it has taken me a lot of time and effort to draft this Bill on my own, which is why I have only formally presented it this year.

I am of the opinion that civil society will benefit immensely from the input of people of all backgrounds in the governance, management and operations of its actors. However, as many charities are entities with no members other than its governing body membership, the governing body members are not subject to replacement by a wider entity membership. Because of this lack of accountability, it means that civil society is less able to deliver on its responsibility to advance the interests of society as a whole.  Establishing a horizontally-integrated organisation overseen by a Corporate Parliament, and delivering charitable services through associations, will go far in rejoining civil society to the broader society in which it is to serve. I refer to this fusion of charity in purpose and democracy in practice as a ‘charitable democracy’ – a charity with a representative and jurisdictional governance structure that exercises legislative, executive and judicial power over its acquired charities.

The constituent associations will enjoy the benefits of having a centralised government which provides regulatory, administrative, security and business development services. With oversight from the Corporate Parliament, divisional legislatures and campus government entities, made up of members of the Urabbaparcensian community, themselves members of the wider Australian community, the associations will uphold the corporate values of responsibility, accountability and creativity, and focus on what charities are meant to do: provide quality relevant services to its clients.

Although Urabba Parks may conduct the business of its constituent charities on its own account as a registered charity, in many cases the business of an association will be conducted through an operating subsidiary.  An example of this would be the acquisition of charities, and their members, in the form of offering membership in Urabba Parks in exchange for Urabba Parks becoming the sole member of the company of the charity, which becomes the operating subsidiary of the association of the organisation formed within Urabba Parks.  While Urabba Parks will be the sole member of the operating subsidiary, the decisions of Urabba Parks in relation to the company will be made (subject to the law of Urabba Parks) by the members of the association of the organisation in Urabba Parks, which is formed of the members of Urabba Parks who are also members of the acquired charity.

To meet the challenges of our time, Australia must adopt more inclusive methods of governance that are focused on delivering tangible outcomes for all Australians.  I invite you to join me in commending this Bill, and charitable democracy in general, to the Australian community.

Daniel James Racovolis

The Founder of Urabba Parks Proprietary Limited