Monastery expansion proposal

Forum to discuss and coordinate the expansion of the CDS and the redevelopment of existing territories.

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Jamie Palisades
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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Jamie Palisades »

Pat: I agree with you thoroughly on this:

"The traditional complaint has been that the RA acts too slowly and that the CDS takes ages to make decisions! Surely it's a good thing that we are now discussing how to make this expansion happen and the issues we have yet to resolve?"

So much so that I have consistently supported Arria's proposal, and tried -- less successfully than I would like, and with less help than I would like -- to help it become properly defined by our laws, and keep it moving forward in spite of gaps in that definition.

As to the exact form of the RA's action, I prefer not to get into faction debates. I am attempting to be a decent neutral executive, assess our risks and apply our rules in a workmanlike manner. Neither uncritical support nor unthoughtful opposition will help this meritorious proposal move forward. You and I both agreed completely, all political rhetoric aside, that there were substantial required elements missing from the RA's resolution under NL 8-2. Let's get that fixed. JP

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Timo Gufler »

First, I would like to thank Arria and others for the hours they have spent in designing the fifth sim and for the demonstration in the New Guild meeting. Topology of the sim must have been difficult to decide but still the result is amazing. However, after studying the proposed maps carefully and comparing them to the GMP couple of questions were risen:

1) According to the plan the monastery sim will have privately owned plots in form of a sea-side fisher village. Does that really match with alpine theme?

2) In GMP there is also another alpine sim planned west from the monastery sim (AM5). If the current alpine terrain is bordered by a sea in the west what kind of sim shall AM5 be? :?

I don't know if I have missed some discussion dealing with these issues but for me it looks like a puzzle without a solution. Maybe someone has thought this over.

Timo

Last edited by Timo Gufler on Sun Oct 26, 2008 4:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Arria Perreault »

The project is still progressing. I know that processes are important, but achievement of projects is important too.
I have presented today a first design of the proposal for the Monastery sim and furnished some of the lacking informations. In this proposal, we have taken in account all remarks that we have got through the forums. The most important change is that we have decided to add a plot that Virtus as NGO managing the Monastery will rent. This plot corresponds to the Library of the Monastery. A service level agreement must occur between CDS and the NGO managing the Monastery. (We can imagine that Virtus will have the possibility to organize activities also in the other parts of the Monastery, in coordination with CDS. As the rest of the Monastery is on a public land, the CDS can also use it for events or meetings).

I have also made this presentation to the Board of the Guild. The Guild has decided to create a workgroup chaired by Ulysse Alexandre and/or Arria Perreault. As Ulysse has made all the design of the sim, I will let him chair this workgroup. I will be a member of this group and concentrate me on the consequences of the project on the building of the Monastery itself. Our first meeting will on next thursday 11PM at the Monastery. We are already four members, but every interested person can join us.

During the RA and Guild meeting, we have got very important feedback. We have heard from the members of the executive that plots in a slope like in AM are easier to sell than plots in flat area like in LA. We have also look the detail Masterplan and realized that next to this sim, west, an other mountainous sim is seen (AM5). The sim of the Monastery doesn't have to goes to the sea level, except for the corner near LA (sorry for forgetting this point: we thought that this sim was in the NFS line). Ulysse has quiclky redesign the slope, with the consequence that this sim will really be the continuation of AM. Here are the plan and the relief lightly modified since this afternoon:

Image
Plan

Image
Relief

Image
General map

In our first proposal, we have proposed a fishing village near the sea. In this second proposal, we will try to reorder the plots in the same style than AM and make the map of plot and financial plan as requested by the Board of the Guild. This sim can be seen as the continuation of AM.

The sim will have a lake wich can be used for skating, curling or even ice hockey during the winter. Ulysse is trying to design an area for ski or sled.

Timo: I think that you've got your answer ;-)

Last edited by Arria Perreault on Sun Oct 26, 2008 4:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Timo Gufler »

Arria Perreault wrote:

Timo: I think that you've got your answer ;-)

Yes, thank you Arria and Ulysse! The new proposal really looks very promising. :)

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Arria Perreault »

Thank you, Timo.

To all: more detailled coming this week, after the first meeting of the working group. It's a very iterative process :-)

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Jamie Palisades »

Let me add my thanks to Timo's. As reported to the RA today (26 October), expansion for CDS will be a challenge in this difficult economy and uncertain virtual land market ... even though we clearly continue to enjoy demand for CDS citizenship, if we have the right kind of space available.
I expect we'll continue to have comments on this proposal during the Guild's review process. But we are well underway, and owe Arria and Ulysee our gratitude for their hard work to bring us to this point. Regards Jamie P

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Monastery expansion proposal (prelim comments)

Post by Jamie Palisades »

Here is a summary of the CDS government concerns I presented to our RA and Guild today on this topic, FYI.

(a) As previously posted, I support the Monastery plan in theory. I think the RA does too. I see no obstacle in the legal basis for it, even if the RA did not quite get it right in its original preliminary approval: if the RA acts carefully and thoughtfully, it will be able to apply the process protections of our NL 8-2 statue, even if that law does not actually apply.

(b) As we are using the NL 8-2 governance review scheme, here's the plan for going forward.
First, the RA has given preliminary approval.
Second, having noted that some required details were omitted by the approval, the Guild has created a task force to complete them.
Third, the Guild has agreed to give that completed plan the 'second stage' review provided by NL 8-2, in an independent manner.
Fourth, their review will come to our executive branch for comment and a recommendation.
Finally, that recommendation and the proposal will be considered for approval by the RA.

(c) As I mentioned to the Guild, we'll ask that their independent review proceed with reasonable speed, as we owe Virtus (the proposers) predictability and reasonable speed ... and we owe to our citizens care and transparency. FWIW, transparency requires four elements, in my view: (1) Thoughtful planning when we take official acts, so that our acts and reports are comprehensible, not indecipherable or misleading; (2) good listening skills and a lack of ad hominem behavior throughout; (3) clear and sensible public proceedings; and (4) adequate time for the public & stakeholders to react, in an internet-based, global asynchronous community.

(d) On the elements of the review, it's my hope that the Guild will work to confirm the following:
(i) that the prim and lot size and rent numbers "foot" arithmetically;
(ii) the map's conformance to other existing terrain and to other running amenities like roads and water;
(iii) the general compatibility of the plan with GMP, noting changes if the plan implies significant changes to the GMP;
(iv) any public amenity issues we need for CDS;
(v) any comments about the perceived feasibility of the proposed rental places, and
(vI) any comments from the Guild's NGO role about how the final plan works generally with CDS NGO land treatment.

On item (v), Looking at the new maps provided today, I voiced some very preliminary concern that the seaside plan for lots resemble the sea level L.A. plots that were and are SLOW to sell, and did not at all go to newbies ... and do not resemble the smaller hillside A.M. lots that QUICKLY sell, and largely to newbies. Others at the meeting voiced concerns that six or several tenants on a void .. even small tenants .. would badly stress that limited sim resource, leading to a bad experience and perhaps vacancy. Apparently we're only aware of other SL cases involving one or two (some say four) tenants on void sims. It is my hope that our Guild experts will help us evaluate those concerns.

On item (vi), there was some doubt voiced from one Guild member that the Guild should have an opinion on NGO rents. My reason for asking is only a fairness one: Once the rents in this proposal are defined, we should confirm how the treatment of the new proposed NGO compares with other CDS NGOs who rent land. (Those are MoCA and the New Guild itself.)

I expect these issues will continue to be worked out. Thus far the proposers have worked very well with us to define and clarify the plan.
Community comments at this stage should be directed to the Guild, for use in its review.
Regards JP

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Moon Adamant »

I was the Guild member that expressed concern about (vi).

To make my point clear, which may have not been so in the middle of the discussion, i will explain it more coherently here:

From the start, the NG assumed that, owning land, it would have to pay the tier corresponding to the land (except in cases when citizens graciously lent us land/gave us donations to pay tier). This has been the assumption we have been laboured in so far - and for that we have accepted donations, balls and auctions have been organized, etc.
I must say here in fairness that the NG (and i assume the MoCA as well) derive some public benefice from the CDS, since the prim allotment of our tiers is exceeded by our current buildings and content.

The question is thus: it is not competency of the NG to define models of public funding to the NGOs, because of two things:
1. This is a political question that must be discussed at RA or Executive level. The NG defining the rules on it would be overstepping the entities to whom rightfully belong the right to make this decision.
2. The NG is an interested party, and therefore, biased.

Therefore, my opinion is that (vi) must not be discussed at NG level, though it MUST indeed be discussed at a political level. We, the NG, will be happy to participate in that discussion and negotiate with the CDS, but the decision is not ultimately ours. And naturally, if new rules will be defined, we'll follow them as is our use.

Eudaimonia now!
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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Arria Perreault »

I totally agree with Moon. NG rent plots and pay the fees corresponding to the plots. It will be the case in the Monastery sim project, as the financial plan will show.
I have asked in the forums how CDS can help NGO. The Chancellor has answered himself to this question:

Jamie Palisades wrote:

Do we need a rule that NGOs can only be created by RA act? Do we already have such a rule?

Financial arrangements also might vary among NGOs. The Guild and Monastery NGOs pay standard CDS rental tier for their parcels. Apparently the MoCA NGO does as well, under NL 4-13, though that started as a free-rent arrangement.

I have not yet found a rule in our laws that sets minimum membership, access or transparency requirements for NGOs. Of course, if the RA approves every charter individually, those issues may be addressed there, each time. But for comparison, note the open process rules that apply to all Citizen Commissions in NL 5-21: http://www.aliasi.us/nburgwiki/tiki-ind ... ge=NL+5-21

I would like to know why suddenly a new case would create a law. I agree with the idea that CDS need a NGO Bill. As RA member, I am ready to work on this Bill.

I have also a comment about an other part of the declaration of the Chancellor. The Guild has a clear review process that we have used for the two last sims construction. I would like to know why suddenly we have to change this process for this proposal. In the Guild, I don't have more weight than any other member. We are all equal.

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal (NGOs, recusals)

Post by Jamie Palisades »

Replying to Arria:

"I totally agree with Moon. NG rent plots and pay the fees corresponding to the plots ..."

... We all seem to agree on that.

"I have asked in the forums how CDS can help NGO ... Jamie Palisades wrote: Do we need a rule that NGOs can only be created by RA act? ... Financial arrangements also might vary among NGOs ... I have not yet found a rule in our laws that sets minimum membership, access or transparency requirements for NGOs ..." ... I would like to know why suddenly a new case would create a law. I agree with the idea that CDS need a NGO Bill. ..."

... Doesn't sound like anyone disagrees there either. Historically CDS has chartered each NGO by a separate legislative act. If someone wants to collect that into a generic NGO billl ... instead of a new, separate similar act just for Virtus ... fine. Let's see what the draft says. I'm not sure it matters which way the RA does this.

"I have also a comment about an other part of the declaration of the Chancellor. The Guild has a clear review process that we have used for the two last sims construction. I would like to know why suddenly we have to change this process for this proposal. In the Guild, I don't have more weight than any other member. We are all equal."

... There we may actually differ. Let me repeat what I've said and written several times; please accept my apologies if it was unclear. I have absolutely no doubt or concern about Arria's fairness or good faith here. But we must try to pay attention to appearances as well. In a democracy, the government members are NOT using their OWN money (like, say, Des Shang in Caledon), but rather, they are holding poiwer over the assets ONLY in trust for the communuity. I hope it is self-evident that, in order to be respected and trusted, they should not seen to be giving special favor to their own personal enrichment or goals.

For whatever odd reason, CDS laws almost completely fail to address personal economic conflicts of interest. For that reason, I myself am refusing to use my legal powers (as a government official) to approve a land swap that will permit a small government building change .. because I'm personally one of the land-owning parties. I instead will ask the RA to approve or reject it. In that way, I leave no question whether CDS' interests (as opposed to my own) have been fairly and independently considered. In that same way, as I wrote earlier, I believe Arria, as the proponent of the Monastery Sim plan, and a person with a significant personal economic interest in its approval, should not cast a Guild vote to approve or review the sim plan that she herself or her group, as proponent, provides.

I am, in short, asking Arria to recuse herself ... just as I did in my other matter ... so that any people can SEE readily that our leaders are not a bunch of insiders who use their positions for their own benefit.

You see, it's likely that Arria's' vote on that matter would create no harm at all to CDS! She's a smart, fair person. But a newcomer or outsider watching us, who does not know her, or us, might NOT see that. And THAT is our target audience for appearing fair beyond question. And THAT is our prospect market for new citizens.

Kind regards JP

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Arria Perreault »

The story stops here:

http://forums.slcds.info/viewtopic.php? ... 271#p12270

The Monastery stays in Alpine Meadow

a person with a significant personal economic interest in its approval

I would like to know what kind of personal economic interest I have, as I tried to make a project with no financial effect on CDS, no incidence in budget. I am sorry, but maybe I am blind. And very sad that I cannot convaince you about my ideas. But now, by the help of destiny, we will not have to discuss about that as the project is dead.

I don't think that the word leader is appropriate for the CDS. We are a small community of people trying to build together. This my vision of CDS.

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Rose Springvale »

With all due respect Arria, and i'm sure you are ready to hit me by now, this is a public project (smile) so it is not really yours to withdraw, is it?

I understand your disappointment and am completely in agreement that the project as drafted presently changes significantly if Linden Labs announcement stands. The beauty of being in a democracy and having it be a public project is that you do not have to shoulder all the disappointment, nor all the potential ways to get around it, alone.

You and Ulysse have done a great job preparing this project. If it works on an open space sim, with a little creativity (something this community has oozing all over) it can work even better on a full sim. I know you see my positions as having been "anti" project, but i've been trying to point out the issues all along.

You worked diligently to make this a public development. You've done the hard work and the topography could be something really amazing. I know everyone is reeling at the new open space policy, but I will ask you to, as we say in the US, not throw the baby out with the bathwater. Let this process work.

I honestly believe there is a "win win" in this project, one that preserves the nature of what you envision, makes sense financially and lets some other people achieve some of the goals they have for CDS.

I, too, have been in situations where i looked at how i was spending my time and money in CDS and felt totally beaten down. I come back because i believe in the project of CDS, and i believe that it's exactly times like this that we can actually demonstrate what is possible, instead of always what is impossible, or even easy.

Convene the work group, Arria. Let's all put our collective intelligence together and then see what sort of recommendation should come from the guild to the RA. Process has value... and if it IS a public project, then we NEED to perfect the process.

You haven't backed down in the face of bigger adversity than this, and you wouldn't be Arria Perreault if you threw in the towel now.

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Arria Perreault »

It could be that Arria Perreault is currently not Arria Perreault and this for several reasons.

I am aware that it is a public project and I am ready to bring it again in the RA to propose to abandon it because of this change in price policy of LL that make void sims not sustanaible anymore. It is also clear in the GMP that the position AM2 is seen for a void sim for cultural and recreationnal activities. We have to start by the beginning and review the GMP and the policy expansion and to see where we have normal sims. I was been enough asked if the proposal fits to the GMP to avoid to ask the question of a normal sim at this place.

I don't chair the workgroup. I just have announced the bad new and the cancel of the first meeting by fairness. The Chancellor has also asked me to recuse myself in Guild process ...

A normal sim doesn't correspond to the philosophy of the proposal I have enter. The idea was to bring a special building in a area with a lot of space around and build a small community around of people interested by collaborating with the Monastery. Without financially sustainable void sim, there is no sense to continue this project. What you propose is another project.

As the Monastery is currently on a normal sim with an alpine theme, I see no sense to move it on a normal sim with an alpine theme. The current plot of the Monastery was designed for it. So Virtus is not concerned by what is a totally new project.

What about to work on a project of a new sim? First it is clear that neither Virtus nor Arria would financially invest on a normal sim. I say that to be clear. Second: would Arria work on the conception of a normal Alpine Sim? Certainly not. It's not really my passion. It's like home ... or almost. I much prefer to invest my time on a more interesting theme, like Nea Hora or Roman Time.

Finally I would like to know why I should still invest time and energy after having been some much critized, attacked, suspected of any trick behind the original proposal. Before to critize publickly, before to attack publickly, it's always good to think about consequences. It's like the proposal was good, but we will not admit it. And later, by sudden opportunity, it would against interesting to develop, but in a total different context. I don't accept. Void sim and Monastery were part of the concept. Without these two elements, I don't recognize the concept. I don't threw the towel. I am already thrown with it.

I don't want to take this challenge, because in my point of view, it is not a challenge. I have no interest in making sims to sell land. My concern is to develop cultural activities. So I prefer now to work with modesty on a new exhibition in the Monastery which stay definitely in Alpine Meadow.

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Rose Springvale »

ah, i read the guild transcript and thought you and Ulysse had been appointed co chairs. I dont' see where you recused yourself. Must have missed that.

There is much talk about what will and will not happen with open spaces, from Linden Lab's perspective. Jack Linden is listening to options per what i read from a town meeting transcript today.

[5:37] Jack Linden: okay, so lets summarise a little: I hear you on OS limits, and I hear you on the other options like free conversions. I won't obviously be making any promises in this discussion which is an ad-hoc one because I wanted to get as much feedback as I could.. but I will take all of this away and discuss it within the Lab. *if* there are outcomes or changes, then we should make those clear sooner rather than later

There may be development of mid level sims that could be an even better choice for this project. We won't know that until the dust settles a bit, and that is why i repeat that it is too early to undo all that has been done on this. i guess it is good fortune that the RA won't meet for two weeks,but isn't the proper process to make a recommendation to the Guild?

All i want is consistency. If it is public, and you are chairing a workgroup, it is not the same as a private development where you as an individual have the prerogative to pull the plug at any time.

Clearly i'm missing something important.

Good luck with it, however you choose to classify it.

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Re: Monastery expansion proposal

Post by Arria Perreault »

In my enthusiasm, I was ready to share the chair. But to avoid critics, I have renounced to be co-chair and I have announced that to the Secretary of the Board. In the same time, the Chancellor has asked me to recuse myself in the Guild review process. In this process, I am now only a member of the Workgroup.
Where I have room to decide is the partnership with Virtus as I am the Curator of the Monastery and also my personal and emotional investment. Virtus had a clear budget for that project: the amount of selling the AM plot. We have bought this plot for 69,375L$. It corresponds to the current price of a void sim, but not of the price of next January. With the changes in LL price policy, Virtus can hardly finance the project (as I don't think that we can be ready with the process before January, due to discussions). As the fees will also increase, the risk taken by Virtus is much bigger and this NGO lives only on donations. Its shoulders are clearly not big enough. Because of this, Virtus will not be interested by a potentially mid sim, more expensive than void and less than normal sim.
I know that I cannot stop the WG and the Guild process, but I inform both of this important fact. They have to taken this important fact in account: the Monastery has no more interest to move. The WG can make recommandations to the Guild and the Guild to the RA. I think that everybody understand that the initial conditions have changed. I don't think that the WG can work on an normal sim project without a decision on a higher level (Guild or RA).
About my personal investment, as I have said, I am not ready anymore to spend my energy for the community for some moment, as I have been severely attacked. It's so. I am not interested to make reflexions about a normal sim or a potential mid sim in AM2 position with the Alpine Theme.
In a more generally level, I think that due to special circumstances, CDS has to review its expansion policy and continuing to work on a single project is probably not the best way. I am sure that the majority of the people agree with me on this fact.

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