In addition to other corporate reforms – including new Federal charters for interstate corporations – I will support a new corporate charter specifically for workers cooperatives. Moreover I will support corporate profit tax waivers for such corporations for twenty years to allow workers cooperatives to get a healthy start in the economy.

  • Board of directors comprised entirely of current employees of the corporation
  • Directors drawn equally from among all employees at all levels and working in any capacity within the corporation.
  • Directors chosen either through random lottery or through democratic elections of all workers.
  • Referenda policy to put major questions to the entire cooperative workforce.
  • Minimum tenure to serve on the board of directors (perhaps 1 year).
  • Total or partial leave from regular duties to serve on the board of directors (e.g., 1 year total leave from other duties or 4 years of three-quarters leave from other duties).
  • Overall corporate charter statutes should be designed to keep corporations from fraudulently creating false democratic governance as is so often the case with the skirting of proper governance for many current corporations and their shareholders.
  • Dividends may be distributed to the employees out of net earnings
  • Interest may be paid to creditors to fulfill the terms of finance agreements
  • Cooperatives may enter into credit agreements and other finance agreements but such agreements may not grant voting rights to creditors on the corporation’s board of directors (i.e., no one may serve as an employee director of the corporation while also an employee or director of a creditor).
  • Merchanting and other commercial and partnering agreements may be freely entered into with other businesses whether workers cooperatives or not.

Mondragon Cooperatives

The Mondagron Cooperative corporation (en español) is an example of such a corporation which pursues a similar approach without any specialized corporate charter support.