CIP-149: Quorum and Elections

Note: Based on feedback received, this CIP will be modified and then reposted.

TLDR - This CIP has 4 Goals:
1. Adjust Quorums
2. Hold Elections
3. Transparency Dashboard
4. Complaint Process
Category Governance
Criticalness High - Relates to elections, votes and administration
Impact High - All members of DAO will be affected
Duration 6 months
Total Budget $72K

The four goals are explained in more detail below:

1. Adjust quorums.

Currently, the way votes are counted for quorum is 1 NFT = 1 vote. Current Quorums are:

250 votes for up to $10K
500 votes for $10K and above
500 votes for non-financial CIPs
1000 votes to change the OA

After a year of governance, CityDAO contributors have realized that it makes no sense for quorum to be the same for $11K and for $2 million, and it makes no sense that a non-financial vote has the same quorum as a CIP for $2 million. The new proposed system would still count 1 NFT as 1 vote for quorum with the following amendments:

  • 1 vote = 1 quadratically-counted NFT
  • Voter approval ratings must be above 75%
  • An algorithm will be used to determine the quorums


CIP Request Quorum (rounded up)
$0 (non-monetary)* 50
$5K 85
$10 100
$50K 162
$100K 208
$1,000,000 550
Maximum ($2,000,000) 757

*To amend the Charter will require a quorum of 200 votes counted quadratically. This CIP does not intend to alter or amend the OA. Currently, it takes 1000 votes counted non-quadratically to amend the Operating Agreement (OA). This CIP does NOT change how votes are counted for altering or amending the OA. They will be counted non-quadratically as 1 NFT = 1 vote.

2. Hold Elections for Multisig

This CIP would create elections for eight (8) multisig signer positions. The multisig signers are responsible to check transactions, where the funds are being sent, to make sure that the transactions they are signing are legal and to follow all the requirements for a proper proposal for the protection of CityDAO. The multisig signers have the authority to consult with outside legal counsel where reasonable and necessary. The multisig signers will not have veto power over CIPs, but can help problem-solve and request additional information where necessary, to make sure that proposals further the mission of the DAO. The multisig will consult with the City Council on issues related to mission and CIP requirements.

3. Hold Elections for a City Council

This CIP would create elections for five (5) members of City Council, an officially-elected group with authority to help organize and delegate operational tasks, such as maintaining the website, discord, discourse, notion, social media including Twitter, mobile app (if there is one), meeting minutes, permissions, passwords, independent contractor agreements and contracts and to request proposals, hire and handle relationships with CPAs for bookkeeping and taxes. The City Council will schedule weekly meetings at regular times, which will not be changed with less than 48 hours notice. The City Council will consult with the multisig on issues related to mission and CIP requirements.

Election Method

If this CIP passes, there will be open elections for eight (8) multisig signers and five (5) City Council members, all with six-month terms that begin on the day the election ends. Any citizen may run for any position. No citizen may serve simultaneously on both the multisig and the council. There will be no hierarchy of members, but once the City Council has been chosen, they may determine a Chairperson to lead meetings.

To be elected, candidates must put up a platform statement on Discourse. All candidates will take part in a series of two (2) public debates with questions submitted in advance by any citizen, moderated and run by the Community and Media Guilds together. After the debates, separate ranked choice votes will be put on Snapshot. All elected members of the multisig and the City Council must be willing to be KYC’d.

Election Rules

  • The election may not be used as an excuse to disparage the character of another member of the DAO.
  • Candidates shall run as individuals and not as a group.
  • Candidates may not make pledges, promises, or commitments of any sort.

Compensation and Budgets

We don’t have a lot of money to spend, but it’s hard to ask people to work for free. The City Council also needs a budget to hire people. We want to pay people for their actual work, not their promise to work. If someone doesn’t do work and still gets paid, that demotivates everyone. Therefore, compensation will be as follows:

  • Multisig Compensation: The multisig signers will receive $500 per month each, regardless of who actually signs the transactions. This is meant to incentivize all members to pay close attention to the transactions, their purpose, destination, suitability and potential liability to the DAO.

  • City Council Compensation: The City Council will have a Coordinape fund of $4K per month for their collective compensation.

  • City Council Budget: The City Council will have a budget of $24K over 6 months and the authority to execute agreements. This money cannot be spent on compensation for the City Council, but only for hiring and paying contributors to do work for the DAO.

Total: $24K + $24K + $24K = $72K*

*In an emergency event where CityDAO gets sued and is required to pay fees in excess of the funds in the City Council treasury, the City Council can put a CIP on Discourse and Snapshot concurrently, with no time limits required. Quorum will be however many people vote.


The multisig signers will have one week to sign or reject transactions. If a transaction is rejected, the signers must document reasons why and next steps. If any of the multisig signers refuse in bad faith to sign (2) or more transactions, they will be removed and the candidate who had the next highest vote will replace them. If there are no candidates left, a new election will be held for replacements. The members of the multisig can vote off any member with a 5 of 8 vote.

If any of the City Council members miss more than three (3) meetings, they will be removed and replaced in the same manner as the multisig signers. The City Council can vote off any member with a 4 of 5 vote. CityDAO Citizens can also call for a removal or replacement of members of either the multisig or the City Council with a CIP and a quorum of 100 votes.

4. Transparency Dashboard

For quality, transparency and clarity, all CityDAO projects must create a transparent and available document that provides all pertinent information on funding received, expenditures, milestones and benchmarks. This document will be written in plain English and will be available at all times to all citizens on the CityDAO website or Notion page. The Council will finalize the details of the process. This is not meant to punish people but to provide transparency. Project members must populate the dashboard in order to receive continued funding.

5. Complaint Process

A complaint may subject the citizen to penalties up to and including a prohibition on offending parties from holding administrative positions at CityDAO or in CityDAO projects.

Substance - What Constitutes a Complaint?

An allegation of wrongdoing related to projects, behavior, transactions, or violations of the rules at CityDAO.

Process - How is a Complaint Dealt With?

  • Step 1 - Mediation by an individual who is agreed-upon by both parties.

Both parties must agree on an individual, preferably a CityDAO citizen, who will hear both sides of the argument and attempt to mediate between the two parties.

  • Step 2 - Random jury

Both parties must write a complaint document. This complaint of wrongdoing needs to be complete and make specific allegations along with any evidence. The complaint will be reviewed by a randomly selected group of six (6) CityDAO citizens. Payment for “jury duty” is $20 per person. This jury of 6 people will make a binding decision based on the facts presented. If either party is not satisfied with the decision, they may appeal to a second random jury of three (3) CityDAO citizens. Same payment as above. A citizen cannot serve on both juries in one case.


Thanks for this thoughtful proposal.

What’s great about this:

  • The new quorum will go a long way towards creating momentum and getting stuff done, making it easier for lower risk and lower budget projects to happen
  • I like how the City Council is defined - the election process seems fair and the powers well scoped, it’s great they have a budget and can make things happen.


  • Election fatigue: Electing both the council and the multisig is a lot. I think the multisig should be appointed by the council. It will protect the multisig signers from a “political” election process where they have to make promises to voters and try to curry favor. Also it will reduce voter fatigue - just elect the council.
  • You suggest that “Voter approval ratings must be above 75%” - that may be hard to achieve and create logjams. If we want to do more than majority, in US Congress a more common requirement is 2/3 or 66%

Overall, count me as a big supporter of this proposal.


I for one am a big fan of trying to make things better at CityDAO, and I support your efforts overall (and it even looks like some of my post edits made it into this draft!) …however reading it today I feel it is next to impossible to decipher what is actionable coming out of this proposal.

Can it not be broken down into exact steps and changes being proposed? For example, if quorum is to be changed, are you going to actually amend the Charter? Or will this be a CIP that lives outside the Charter and creates additional confusion (in particular for newcomers)?

Other examples of questions around implementation/intent:

What does it mean “must create” and what happens if they do not?

You are proposing that someone on a current project team could be removed due to internal CityDAO complaints? (all current projects except baby parcel are external so that would actually be a good way to force accountability, I am just not sure what you intended)

What does complete mean? I could see this being a major problem in terms of challenges in the future. In the law there are rules of evidence to create an ecosystem that promotes fair and just outcomes. There are no such rules at CityDAO nor are there resources to support them.

What does randomly selected mean? A contributor gets to “randomly” select their 6 best friends to evaluate the complaint?

This does not properly incentivize the outcome CityDAO needs. CityDAO will get $20 worth of effort and thats all.

Binding how?

Same issues as above.

I have only read this proposal once, and I think dispute resolution is a much needed aspect of the DAO ecosystem, but unless CityDAO is going to lean in and solve the problems, we should not be throwing window dressing on it. Dispute resolution is a complicated topic and one that deserves more time and resources than a few sentences and $20 per person…

Thanks, Scott. I appreciate the suggestion to have the council elect the multisig. Do you think the council should still be five people, and do you worry that it might be giving these five too much power?

If anyone has questions regarding CIP-149, feel free to ask me here. I have been involved with the process of formulating it with David, Konrad, and some help from ScottA. It seeks to simplify the quorum to proposal cost ratio, setup a group to be the arms and legs of the DAO (day to day operations along with near term future and past), run elections for a Council and Multisig, and begin the process of cleaning house at CityDAO. The main driver for implementation will always be the DAO itself. The DAO is competent enough to vote on things they believe in. However, we had a multisig that would silently veto such things- not doing something is still a decision. We are hoping to setup an infrastructure where things the DAO votes on are actually turned into tangible things. Defining roles so that expectations can be rendered and responsibilities made clear. The heart of the DAO is the DAO itself, we propose a structure to aid in that endeavor. Feel free to ask me any questions you might have.


Supporter of this as well.

I’ll provide a few comments in separate sections for better organization.

Multi-sig & Council

Recently, a CityDAO contributor I know experienced a wallet compromise and theft. There have also been cases of multi-sigs being compromised due to negligence or lack of understanding.

I propose that all multi-sig signers, whether elected or chosen by the council, undergo proper training to fully grasp the implications and responsibilities of being on the multi-sig. This is why I appreciate @scottfits’ suggestion of allowing the council to decide on multi-sig seats.

However, I don’t think the multi-sig should receive such high compensation if the council exists. The council should also vet transactions for safety, and if it’s just about signing transactions, the compensation seems excessive. The current multi-sig has done well without compensation, some for nearly two years.

I suggest having a larger council and some overlap with multi-sig members:

Council of 15 people - Based on my experience in helping assemble teams and breaking up the charter creation with others last year, I believe we can work cohesively with a larger group. This reduces centralization and encourages involvement. We could run a similar process as last year, creating task teams to research and develop better processes, ultimately to be decided by the community or outsourced for implementation.

Multi-sig of 8 people - These people can remain the same or be changed by the council, but the crucial aspect is that they can also BE the council. I’m unsure about the need for separation, but it’s important that multi-sig and council members have context in their decisions and are TRUSTED parties with good standing in the DAO.

Quorum: Striking the Right Balance

As someone who has seen multiple proposals suffer from poorly designed quorum numbers, I empathize with the need for change. I accept partial responsibility for this oversight, but we couldn’t have predicted the drop in engagement.

The issue extends beyond merely adjusting quorum numbers; we should also consider improving the overall process for small iterative changes and proposal systems.

I appreciate the focus on quorum, but I also support granting the elected council the power to gate-keep proposals temporarily or apply a checklist while eliminating the 20-likes system.

We can categorize proposals into different groups for better clarity and engagement:

Proposals under 100k

For these proposals, the main challenge is achieving quorum. People might not care enough since it doesn’t significantly impact them. The struggle here is getting enough votes for legitimacy. Yes, the 100k number is arbitrary and could be 80k or 120k, but the point remains.

Proposals over 100k

Quorum is usually not an issue for these proposals, as seen in the past 6-12 months. These proposals require higher approval and alignment within the DAO. I believe the quorum should be set higher for proposals of this nature than, say, “208” as proposed. As I mentioned before, this is more about the “APPROVAL” rating of the DAO. We should use a quadratic formula to calculate the approval curve up to the max treasury value, focusing less on quorum. For example, I don’t think it’s reasonable to require a quorum of 757 for a 2-million proposal; instead, we could demand a very high passing rate of, say, 95%. This would give NO votes a significantly higher impact.

Non-financial Proposals

These proposals are intriguing, but I think the elected council should initially have the power to gate-keep these proposals or propose arbitrary quorum numbers for them to proceed. Since the council is a trusted body and there’s a wide variety of non-financial proposals, they should be more involved. The same could apply to financial proposals.

This leads me to introduce another feature:

Proposal Categorization

It’s essential for us to consider the type of proposal for quorum purposes and the community’s benefit and understanding. Several categories can help prevent issues like those we experienced last year in CityDAO, where financial proposals under 10k had a 250-quorum threshold, leading people with non-financial proposals to request $1 to avoid the threshold.

Proposal categorization is a governance style adopted by various other DAOs and could serve our community well in fostering engagement and clarity.

I like the direction of this CIP, especially the dispute resolution mechanism via random juries. A few problems that need to be addressed:

  1. This proposal conflicts with CIP-145 and does not mention how it plans to reconcile that conflict. Who will run the proposed elections? How?
  2. This proposal lacks a Mayor. Without an executive branch, CityDAO will continue to fail. There is a reason all cities and entities have a unitary executive. This is not about centralization of all power. Referendums via CIP will still be possible. City Council and Mayor are just guardrails.
  3. This proposal lacks CIP template creation authority? The City Council should have a way way to fast track their own CIPs for approval by members.
  4. This proposal does not state who can veto CIPs if they violate the law or CityDAO mission. Again, City Council needs to be able to legislate…that is not presently provided for.

Again, I support the direction. Just seeking some clarification and refinement.

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Dam, I was hoping that when you mentioned this on Discord you had questions about the equation lol.

I mostly agree with what you’re saying. I for sure think the 20 likes should go, and the quorum is a huge leap in allowing small iterative changes as the quorum requirement would be quite low

To me, it seems like the next CIP perhaps. First, we need to elect potential gatekeepers. The City Council will then be able to consider what powers they should have.

The quorum just ensures that we solve the silly problem of having 10k and 500k be the same quorum. There should be some incentive for proposers to think about what the minimum amount needed is to achieve the proposal, not what is the best strategy for quorum. This will get us there.

ps. if anyone is interested the equation was just made to be as simple as possible and roughly pass through the points we had before.

Interesting. I also think 5 is low, and I don’t think multi-sig elections are a great idea. If we can put that money into more council members I am all for that.


I 100% agree. When @Vortoxica has mentioned that he can read transactions, my thought is always, “teach us!” All multisig members should be trained to do the job.

This makes sense. 15 people seems kind of large for a council, but I see your point. Maybe it could be like 12 people? Though I agree that if some members overlap, then it might not be a problem.

This was something we considered, and a previous version of this document used a formula for approval rates. I personally think 75% is quite low and agree that larger requests for funding could benefit from higher approval rates. We took it out because the equation was very hard to figure out. In addition to the quorum formula, I had approval rates of:

$0 to $100K = 75%
$100K - $500K = 85%
$500K to $1 million = 90%
Above $1 million = 95%

I agree with the other points about non-financial and categorization - my only thought is that those are issues that the Council can address in due course. Maybe for sake of expediency, they don’t need to be addressed in this CIP.

I agree that these are some important points. It’s true that this conflicts with CIP-145. That CIP, being under $10K, only requires 250 votes and could likely pass. In that case, you would be running the election for the multisig. I think, in that case, we could alter this CIP (or repost) so that it only covers the City Council elections.

Personally, I’m opposed to a mayor. I think that @kkopczyn’s idea of an operations manager could make sense, but I’m against a mayor who would have too much authority.

I think that the City Council would be authorized to make CIP templates. I tried to reflect that they would work with the multisig signers to form it. This CIP states that the multisig doesn’t have veto power but can consult with outside legal counsel when needed. So my thought was that if counsel determines a CIP is illegal, it cannot move to snapshot - not because it’s vetoed, per se, but because the multisig has an obligation not to post illegal proposals.

  1. Change quorums
  2. Hold elections

My concern with changing the Charter is whether it happens in a timely manner. I agree that eventually the Charter (and OA) need to be updated. But I propose we just change the parts that need to be changed now. The Charter and / or OA can certainly be changed in due time. We could even take out the transparency audit and dispute resolution sections and just have the City Council work on those as part of their authority.

Some of the terms that you mentioned such as “must”, "complete, “randomly” and “binding” are, I agree, imperfect. However, I think that we could always find ways to make a document longer and define terms more clearly. I’m hoping that we can do our best to move governance forward and handle issues as they arise.

Whether $20 incentivizes someone to serve on a “jury” remains to be seen. I understand that it may be seen as too low. Maybe we could hold an informal poll of citizens. Right now, there’s no way for the few of us here to know if people would be willing or not.

Generally I have the same comments and made them in the 150 thread. I do think the executive issue could be solved by expirimentation with a two body system where the multi signers would sort of serve as that executive check with some sort of veto power a little more in line with what you said ‘legal and mission check’ so I am not sure where it changed from my initial conversation with @Da3vid or I just misunderstood, but I would like to see us more in that direction in the final version. If we do have a mayor or executive director, I do think there needs to be a check on them also. Like multi-sig checks the executive (with censure, removal, etc) who checks the council (with a veto) who checks the multi sig (appointments and removals).

I don’t think $20 will suffice but a reputation based soul bound token or similar could be enough!

Melissas randomocracy concept fits well here and its a pretty low hanging fruit. We would easily set something like that up to be the arbitrator in a lot of scenarios.

Hahaha, don’t worry, i understand the equation but think it should be tweaked slightly.

Even the idea of running simulations on an inverse equation is certainly intriguing and might lead to interesting outcomes.

The City Council’s authority to make decisions following this CIP is something I agree with, but I don’t think they should determine the extent of their own powers. The do’s and don’ts of the council ought to be outlined here, even if they are somewhat vague.

There are still 2-3 pressing issues we must address to empower smaller proposals with lower quorum and ensure larger proposals are aligned with the community’s values. I feel strongly that the quorum requirements for larger monetary asks should not be set too high. For instance, if we were to allocate $1,800,000 for homeland, achieving a high quorum could prove challenging.

As we navigate the complexities of quorum, it is essential to strike a delicate balance that takes into account the diverse nature of proposals and the goals of the community.

Thank you David!!

Totally support quorum algorithm.

Does multi-sig have to be 8 people? How many of 8 have to sign for a transaction to be approved?

I like the idea of the council in general. My concern is that we would have more operational management than building going on (nothing to tweet or edit notion about). I think maybe a three person team would be enough.

I like the compensation amounts. What were you referring to with the $72k for contributors of the DAO? Would that be more operational efforts? Or for projects?

Really like the transparency dashboard for project tracking. I could see this being a reason for a larger council or something the $72k could be spent on to help develop.

On mediation, it seems unlikely that two people in a hot dispute would come to agreement about an individual for step 1. Maybe could just go straight to random jury?

I agree with first suggestion of @scottfits.

Support @lyons800 idea of training for multi-sig (it was my wallet that was compromised because of my naivety) as well as the idea of increasing pass rate. Increasing the quorum means involving more unengaged DAO members. Increasing the pass rate means getting higher alignment among active DAO members, which I think is more important.

Oh ya, I didn’t mean to imply you wouldn’t understand it, it is quite simple, rather you would be curious how we got it.

When I said to determine their own powers I simply mean they could then propose CIPs to give them needed authority that could align with what you saying. Essentially, it is more important to outline broadly their authority, and how they will be held accountable, 3/5 could vote someone out etc. Than to get into specifics. The council can propose CIPs for specific details. Which would be much easier, which is the point. Money is harder to get. Small changes are easier.

I guess maybe agree to disagree just in that I think the equation is quite fair. I think t0wn had 600-ish for a quorum. I don’t think 700+ is impossible, it just means you really have to campaign and reach out to people prior to a snapshot vote. Which is really the point. If you ask for the treasury it shouldn’t be impossible, but it should be fairly hard.

I really like this idea. The point to is to force a resolution soon. I think it actually has more to do with the perception of outside people looking in, than per se the actual conflict. It would be a huge bonus to demonstrate that conflicts are quickly, and fairly, dealt with. (but of course, I am a fan of the idea :slight_smile: )

THis is a good point. Personally It think we could do both. I actually had a very simple equation for pass rate.

pass rate = 75 + 25($ ask/tresury)

As you ask for more and more it gets closer and closer to 100%. you can tweak it to top out at say 95% too. I personally like fixing both. That said, I feel the pass rate is just a little more sensitive too. Easier to get an equation from 0 to 2 mill. From 75 percent to 95 percent, it starts to seem trivial in that the percentage doesn’t really change much. But in general, I agree with your point.

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This is a good idea.