At the Fall 2011 E.V. meeting, the Electoral College approved the following clarification of the meaning of Lodge Space. A Lodge must have regular and consistent access to one of the following for conducting its business:
1. A commercial space, including:
- Temple facility suitable for degree work through Fourth & P.I. and E.G.C. rites
- Room appropriate for repose
- Food Preparation Facilities
Note: The temple facility and room appropriate for repose must be dedicated to use by the Lodge, although the Lodge may sublet use of the space to other appropriate organizations as scheduling permits.
The food preparation facilities and restroom(s) should ideally be dedicated to Lodge use as well, but it is permissible for the Lodge to use food preparation facilities and restroom(s) that are shared by other commercial entities if the Lodge facility is part of a commercial complex.
The food preparation facilities and restroom facilities should be adequate to serve the routine needs of the body.
2. A self-contained house, residential building, or residential complex dedicated to Lodge activities, including:
- Temple Space suitable for degree work through Fourth & P.I. and also the performance of the rites of Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica
- Room appropriate for repose
- Food preparation facilities
Note: The house or residential building must be physically separate from any private residence, and must have its own separate and legally recognized address. The food preparation facilities and restroom facilities should be adequate to serve the routine needs of the body.
3. Some other space, not as described above, with the prior approval of the Electoral College. Lodge space must be under the control of the Lodge, or U.S. Grand Lodge, and must also be one of the following:
- Leased or rented by the Lodge or O.T.O.-U.S.A. on a monthly basis or longer.
- owned by O.T.O.-U.S.A. or a subsidiary corporation.
Please note that local bodies are not authorized to lease or rent space in the name of O.T.O. or O.T.O.-U.S.A. without prior approval from the Grand Treasurer General; local bodies are encouraged to rent space in the name of the local body. Note also that space may be leased in the name of the master or other member of the V° or higher, though reasonable exceptions as to the guarantor of the lease due to logistics are acceptable.
The ultimate goal in such cases is to lease space in the name of the local body.
By-the-day rentals and other arrangements, though not preferred, may be considered by the College as fulfilling the requirement for Lodge status in exceptional cases. The prior approval of the College will be required in all such cases before an application for Lodge status will be considered.
One or more caretakers and/or guests may reside at the Lodge facility, but no such caretaker shall be the owner, leaseholder, or principal signatory of the rental agreement for the facility, unless the owner of the facility is O.T.O.-U.S.A. or a subsidiary corporation. All caretakers, and any guests, shall be required to conform at all times, while present at the Lodge space, to all rules and regulations of O.T.O.-U.S.A. regarding permissible activities at official O.T.O. events.
If a local body officer has questions about whether an existing or potential space meets these criteria, we encourage them to contact the Electoral College directly.