Land Of The LETS Green Dollar
Copyright � James Taris


Dave Robbie chairs the New Zealand LETS Conference at Invercargill.

18. Friday, April 11

New Zealand LETS Conference (Day 1)

I got up after 10am. One of Dave's jobs was photographing greyhounds after the events, and he'd already left before I'd got up. Sharon and her daughters were preparing to take a carload of things down to the Conference, so I parked myself in front of their computer to prepare the summary notes for my presentation. Dave had promised to pick me up at 5pm and take me with him to the conference. This gave me plenty of time to complete my notes and photocopy 30 sets for the expected delegates.

I also had time to update my diary entries and check my forever-bulging email folder.

Dave arrived late (a pattern that became disturbingly consistent), and so we arrived at the conference much later than planned, and missed the 6 o'clock Conference opening by the mayor of Invercargill.

Dinner was already being served, so I joined the queue and had my first decent meal for the day.

The Conference began at 8pm, and soon we were hearing reports from all the LETS groups in attendance. There were no volunteers to start off, so it was decided to start from the northern-most groups and work down southward. Rather than giving a full and complete report here (I'm sure this will be available from the Conference organizers) I'll just mention some of the items which caught my attention �

Thames LETS - a healthy group of 160 members, crediting its control of inter-trading problems to the adoption of 'Zero Trading', where inter-trading is no longer allowable to members of other Green Dollar groups unless they can provide credits equivalent to the debits created.

Wairarapa LETS - a strong group of 100 members and 30 associate members which has trading an amazing G$500,000 since its formation 12 years ago.

Wellington LETS - a large group of 110 members which had seen trading stop recently due to internal problems. But since, and because of, my presentation on March 25, had cleared their groups G$4,500 debit. Thus solving one of their major headaches.

HANS - over 200 members with 50% of them trading. Has a business member who accepts 20% of purchases in G$ once a month. This increases business for him on his slowest day of the month, and is a great promoter of G$ to the community.

MOSS - down to only 18 members (had peaked at 80), and in the process of merging with Nelson LETS.

Nelson LETS - 134 members making about 50 trades (G$3,000) per month. Moving to new premises within the Senior Citizens Hall. Had a successful 2-day trading experience at the Festival of Opportunities where they recruited 6 new members.

Blenheim LETS - 22-26 members trading only G$2,500/yr.

PLEBS - no report available.

Timaru LETS - 40 members with 50% trading. Having success with market days by displaying 'I am a local Green Dollar Member' sings.

HamLETS - Only Co-ordinator and Treasurer in committee. Attempts to get markets going didn't kick off.

TEES - believe they can get funding to train G$ managers.

IBES - 30 members, currently hosting the New Zealand LETS Conference.

Just like going on a school camp!

Sharon was foresighted enough to bring a sleeping bag and pillow for me � and another 2 water bottles. And just as well. Those cabins we were sleeping in were very much 'bare essentials' accommodation, with no bedding or heating provided.

This article is taken from the ebook,
Land of the LETS Green Dollar

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