SENIOR CITIZENS’ ASSOCIATION OF BRITISH COLUMBIA CONSTITUTION
1. The name of the Association is the “Senior Citizens’ Association of British Columbia”.
2. The purposes of the Association are:
(a) To stimulate public interest in the welfare of the Senior Citizens of Canada. To advocate for pensions and a social security entitlement that provide the means to ensure housing and living conditions that meet the seniors’ needs for comfort and security.
(b) To protect the rights and interest of pensioners under the Old Age Security and Assistance Acts.
(c) To co-operate with pensioners’ organizations in British Columbia and other Provinces of Canada and with other individuals and groups for the purpose of promoting the pensioner movement.
(d) To operate a charitable institution (without profit to its members) for the purpose of constructing, providing, maintaining, leasing, owning and managing one or more housing projects, and any other facilities which may seem conducive to the attainment of the purposes of the Society.
SENIOR CITIZENS’ ASSOCIATION OF BRITISH COLUMBIA
I. The operations of the Association shall be carried on chiefly in Trail, British Columbia. This provision is alterable.
II. The Association shall be governed by the principles of democracy and shall be non-partisan, non-racial, non-denominational and non-political.
III. In the event of the dissolution of the Association, all assets of the Association shall become the property of the Branches. This provision is unalterable.
1. Robert’s Rules of Order shall be the recognized guide of the Association where the constitution and bylaws do not govern.
PROVINCIAL BOARD AND EXECUTIVE
2. The Provincial Board of Directors of the Association shall consist of the President, 1st Vice President, 2nd Vice President, Secretary/Treasurer, Administrative Assistant and the Chairperson of each Regional Council, and the immediate Past President who shall be a member of the Board for one year, or such longer period as the President may determine, following the end of his/her term as President or until he/she gives notification of resignation. The Provincial Board shall have the power to appoint additional members.
3. The Provincial Executive of the Association shall consist of the following officers: the President, 1st Vice-President, 2nd Vice-President, Secretary/Treasurer, Administrative Assistant and Past President.
DUTIES OF OFFICERS, EXECUTIVE AND BOARD
4. The President shall be responsible for the general conduct of the business of the Association in setting its policies, executing its decisions, supervising its officials and representing it before other bodies. He/she shall preside at all meetings of the Provincial Executive and Board and shall be an ex-officio member of all committees except the Nominations Committee.
5. The President shall appoint, from the Provincial Board, the Chairpersons of the following Standing Committees:
Constitution and By-laws Nominations Annual General Meeting Resolutions Finance Ways and Means Each Chairperson shall choose his/her own committee members from the Board or general membership.
6. The President shall be empowered to call a meeting of the Board when it is deemed necessary.
7. The 1st Vice President shall assist the President and shall preside in his/her absence.
8. The 2nd Vice President shall assist the President in any way directed.
9. The Provincial Board shall appoint a Secretary/Treasurer, and an Administrative Assistant.
10. The Administrative Assistant shall take instruction from the President, shall attend all Executive and Board meetings, shall conduct all correspondence and clerical work of the Association and shall, as soon as possible after each meeting, send copies of the Executive minutes to Board members and Board minutes to all Branches.
11. The Secretary/Treasurer shall receive all moneys and pay all accounts for which vouchers have been authorized by the Provincial Executive or the Finance Committee. The Secretary/Treasurer shall also prepare a complete statement of receipts and disbursements and balance sheets with vouchers for review and presentation to the Annual General Meeting. The Secretary/Treasurer shall also place all moneys into the bank account of the Association within a reasonable length of time and shall make payments due on the authority of the Provincial Executive or Financial Committee by cheques signed by the signing officers and shall report to the Registrar of Companies annually in accordance with the Society Act.
12. Signing officers shall be any two of the following: the President, the 1st Vice President and the Secretary/Treasurer.
13. The Provincial Board may allocate ten percent of the membership dues it receives from the Branches to organizational purposes such as work for new Branches, consolidation, and support and education of existing Branches.
14. The Provincial Board is authorized to grant funds of the Association in the following categories:
(a) Organizational expenses authorized by the Provincial Board to any member of the Board, or to any Regional Council or Branch. (b) Printing membership cards, application forms, etc. for the use of the Association. (c) Stationery and supplies for use by the Secretary/Treasurer and Administrative Assistant. (d) Communication expenses for Association business when authorized by the President. (e) Expenses related to the Annual General Meeting, including travel expenses. (f) Cost of travel for members traveling to and from Provincial, Executive or committee meetings. This expense shall be reimbursed at the most economical mode of transportation acceptable to the Board. (g) Affiliation fees or annual membership fees to any organization when such affiliation or membership has the approval of the Provincial Board. (h) Any further expenditures which are authorized by the Provincial Board or by the membership at the Annual General Meeting.
15. The quorum of the Provincial Board meeting shall be fifty percent plus one.
16. Ten percent of the members in good standing of a Region may request that the Provincial Board hold a meeting of the Directors. Such a request shall be given to the Provincial Board in writing, signed by the members and shall state the nature of the business to be conducted. The meeting shall proceed in accordance with the Society Act.
17. The Directors may at any time appoint a Director to fill a vacancy on the Executive until the next Annual General Meeting, unless the vacant position is that of a Regional Council Representative in which case the Regional Council may appoint a member to fill the vacancy.
18. A member of the Provincial Executive who has been absent from two successive Provincial Executive meetings shall be asked by the President to assess his/her situation. If the member is unlikely to be able to resume his/her duties on the Provincial Executive, he/she shall be invited to resign the position that makes him/her a member of the Provincial Board.
19. A member of the Provincial Executive may be removed from office for just and sufficient cause by a majority vote of the Provincial Board. The Board may appoint a member as an officer to fill a vacancy during the year, to hold office until the next Annual General Meeting.
20. Only one member may be elected from any Branch to the Provincial Board, excluding the Chair who shall be considered a member at large.
21. Ten percent or more of the members in good standing of the Association may requisition the Provincial Board to convene an extraordinary general meeting of the Association. Such a request shall be given to the Provincial Board in writing, be signed by the requisitioning members and shall state the nature of the business to be conducted. The Board shall proceed as required for a general meeting requisitioned under the Society Act.
22. Branches of the Association may be organized in British Columbia on the application of ten or more persons, upon acceptance by the Provincial Board and payment of a charter fee.
(1) Any Branch may draw up its own by-laws to supplement the bylaws of the Association provided such by-laws do not contravene the Association’s constitution and by-laws.
(2) The by-laws must provide that the Association is not responsible for the debts of the Branch.
(3) The by-laws must also provide that:
i) If a Branch becomes defunct or wishes to withdraw from the Association, its Charter and all documents relating to the Association shall be returned to the Provincial Board.
ii) After all outstanding debts have been settled, the remaining assets shall be dispersed by that Branch to a charitable organization with the same objectives.
24. The Provincial Board by-laws shall be used as a sample of by-laws which may be used by the Branches or adapted to Branch requirements.
25. A copy of the Branch Constitution and By-Laws and changes thereto shall be submitted to the by-laws Chair for ratification and filing.
26. Branches are autonomous and may become incorporated with the approval of the Provincial Board and may own property and acquire assets.
27. There shall be no subsidiary organization within a Branch. All committees shall be under the jurisdiction of the Branch Executive.
(1) Voting membership in the Association shall be open to all persons who support the aims of the organization and who are 50 years of age and over. A member must be 50 years of age to hold office and/or vote.
(2) Non-voting membership shall be open to persons who support the aims of the organization and who are under the age of 50 years. Non-voting members may not hold office.
(3) The Association and its Branches may not have more non-voting members than voting members.
29. Persons qualified under Section 28 may become members of more than one Branch but shall be restricted to serve on the Provincial Executive and/or Regional Council as a member of one Branch only.
30. Each member shall be given a numbered Association membership card signed by the Branch Secretary. This shall be the member’s credential to visit any regular meeting of any Branch of the Association.
31. Annual dues are due in January in the amount which is set by the members at the previous Annual General Meeting of the Branch.
32. Branches may levy an extra operating fee.
33. The membership of any member may be cancelled by a simple majority vote at a meeting of the members of the Branch where there is just and sufficient cause such as:
(a) Gross misbehaviour, such as verbal or bodily assault.
(b) Misuse or misappropriation of funds.
(c) Misuse or willful damage to facilities and equipment of the Association.
After exhausting Branch appeal procedures, if any, the dismissed member may make an appeal to the Provincial Board, whose decision shall be binding on the member and the Branch.
34. A person shall cease to be a member of the Association:
(a) By delivering his/her resignation in writing to the Secretary of the Branch or by mailing or delivering it to the address of the Branch.
(b) On being expelled.
(c) On having been a member not in good standing because of failure to pay dues for twelve consecutive months.
35. Life membership dues shall be a once only fee as set by the Provincial Board. Application for the life membership shall be submitted to the Regional Director for approval. If there is no Regional Director, the application shall be submitted to the Provincial Secretary/Treasurer who will seek approval from the Provincial Board.
36. The Provincial Board may, by majority vote, suspend any Branch for:
(a) Failing to pay assessments.
(b) Failing to adhere to the bylaws of the Association.
(c) Any other just cause.
(1) Every Branch upon formation, and thereafter in or around the month of November shall elect a President, Vice-President(s), Secretary, Treasurer and as many members at large as deemed necessary, to take office commencing January 1 of the next year, all of whom shall be the Directors of the Branch. The positions of Secretary and Treasurer may be combined into one position.
(2) The President, Vice President(s), Secretary and Treasurer shall comprise the Branch Executive. The immediate Past President shall advise and assist the President, and attend Board meetings as required.
38. Term of Office: There shall be no time limit as to how many terms a member may serve on the Branch Executive, provided they are duly elected at the Branches Annual General Meeting.
39. The quorum at meetings of the Executive or Directors of a Branch shall be fifty percent plus one.
40. No person shall hold office in more than one Branch, except as a temporary measure.
41. Branch officers assuming office shall receive from the retiring officers all documents pertaining to their respective offices and the President shall also receive the charter.
42. A Branch Treasurer shall receive all moneys and pay all accounts by cheque for which vouchers have been approved by the Executive and authorized at a regular meeting. The Treasurer shall prepare a complete statement of receipts and disbursements and a balance sheet with vouchers and books for review and presentation at the Annual General Meeting of the Branch. The Treasurer shall place all moneys to the bank account of the Branch within a reasonable time and shall make payments due by cheque signed by any two of the President, 1st Vice President and the Treasurer.
43. All funds and moneys received by members or committees on behalf on the Branch shall be turned over to the Branch Treasurer.
(1) Branch Secretaries shall obtain all membership cards from the Provincial Secretary/Treasurer. On or before April 15 of each year, the Branch Treasurer will pay per capita based on memberships paid to that date. Before December 15th, the Branch Treasurer will send in per capita based on the balance of memberships paid for the year.
(2) The Provincial annual per capita fee shall be set by the delegates at the Provincial Annual General Meeting.
45. The Directors may at any time and from time to time appoint a member as a Director to fill a vacancy in the Directors or Executive, to hold office until the next Annual General Meeting of the Branch.
46. The members may by ordinary resolution remove a Director or an officer from office before the expiration of his/her term of office and may elect a successor to complete the term.
47. The Provincial Association shall not be responsible for costs incurred by any Branch or member.
48. The Branch shall hold up to ten members’ meetings per year at a time set by the Executive.
49. The Annual General Meeting shall be at the end of each fiscal year.
50. The Executive shall, at the Annual General Meeting, present to the members a progress report and a properly prepared financial statement of receipts and disbursements.
51. Every voting member has one vote.
52. Proxy voting is not allowed.
53. Voting shall be by a show of hands, or if requested, by ballot.
54. The quorum at general meetings shall be the lesser of ten percent of the Membership or ten members, who in either case must be in good standing.
55. Branch meetings shall conduct business in the following order:
- Call to Order
- Reading of Minutes of previous meeting and Executive meetings
- Business arising from Minutes
- Treasurer’s Report
- Reports of Committees
- Unfinished business
- New business
- Motion to adjourn
- Social time
56. Branches shall elect delegate(s) to represent them at the Provincial Annual General Meeting.
57. Branches with 50 or fewer members in good standing shall be entitled to one delegate at the Annual General Meeting. Branches with more than 50 members in good standing shall be entitled to one delegate for each fifty members or part thereof and shall be notified by the Administrative Assistant on the “Call to Convention” form as to the number of delegates to which they are entitled. The Provincial Secretary/Treasurer shall allocate the number of delegates per Branch based on the paid-up per capita membership of the previous year.
58. New Branches receiving their charter and paying per capita dues between January 1 and April 15 shall be entitled to have delegate(s) at the Provincial Annual General Meeting in the current year.
59. Special meetings of the Branch Executive or Directors may be called by written application of ten percent of the members in good standing of a Branch. The application must be signed by the members and shall state the nature of the business to be conducted. These meetings shall be in accordance with the Society Act.
60. Ten percent or more of the members in good standing of a Branch may requisition the Directors of a Branch to convene an extraordinary general meeting of the Branch. Such request shall be given to the Directors in writing, be signed by the requisitioning members and shall state the nature of the business to be conducted. The Directors shall proceed as required for a general meeting requisitioned under the Society Act.
61. The Provincial Board shall form a Regional Council for a Region when three or more adjacent Branches request it.
62. The Regional Council shall assist member Branches in organizing so as to promote unity and accord amongst the Branches in the region.
63. Each Regional Council may annually decide on the number of voting delegates at its meetings.
64. A yearly election of officers including a Chair and Vice-Chair shall take place at a Regional Conference prior to the Provincial Annual General Meeting. The Chair shall appoint a Secretary/Treasurer.
65. A copy of the Minutes of the Regional Conference shall be sent to the Provincial Administrative Assistant no later than two weeks following the meeting.
66. The Chair shall then be installed as a Director on the Provincial Board at the Annual General Meeting or the first Board meeting attended after his/her election.
67. The Chair shall be empowered to call a meeting of the Regional Council when it is deemed necessary.
68. The Regional Council Chair attending an Annual General Meeting other than as a delegate shall be reimbursed for normal expenses by the Provincial Board.
69. The Regional Council Chair may be removed from office before the expiration of his/her term by an ordinary resolution at a meeting attended by one member from at least 75% of the Branches which have formed the Regional Council, where in each case the member has been authorized to attend by a majority vote at a meeting of the members of the Branch, and another Chairperson may be elected or appointed by ordinary resolution to serve during the balance of the term.
70. A Regional Council may assess its Branches for a nominal sum to cover expenses.
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
71. The Association shall hold an Annual General Meeting in the spring when officers shall be elected and business transacted in accordance with the constitution and by-laws.
72. The meeting shall consist of members of the Provincial Board and delegates and/or proxies from the Branches.
73. A Nominations Chairperson shall be appointed by the President to prepare a slate of officers for presentation at the meeting.
74. Nominations may also be received from Branches showing the written consent of the nominee together with a short history of the nominee’s past experience.
75. Nominations may also be received from the floor.
76. In the event of a member not present being nominated for office, a written acceptance by the nominee shall be sufficient, such acceptance to be presented to the Nominations Committee.
77. The members shall elect by secret ballot from the membership of the Association, a President, a 1st Vice President and a 2nd Vice President, who shall hold office until the next Annual General Meeting.
78. A member elected to the Provincial Board may also hold office in the Branch of which he/she is a member.
79. The officers of the Association elected and serving during the previous year shall be delegates with voice and vote at the Annual General Meeting by virtue of being elected to office. The Secretary/Treasurer, and Administrative Assistant, as appointed officers, shall be entitled voice, not vote, but entitled to vote a proxy.
80. Resolutions to the Annual General Meeting shall be submitted to the Resolutions Chair at least ninety days before the Annual General Meeting, and such resolutions shall be given preference at the meeting.
81. Amendments to the constitution or by-laws shall be by special resolution and shall require a forty-day notice period and a 75 percent majority vote.
82. With the consent of a majority vote of the members, resolutions may be submitted from the floor provided that copies of the resolution are available for the delegates.
83. All resolutions shall be signed by the President and Secretary of the Branch presenting the resolution.
84. In emergency situations, delegates may propose resolutions without the signature of the President and Secretary of their Branch. If agreed to by 75 percent of the delegates present, such resolutions may then be presented by the Provincial Board for discussion and become Board resolutions.
85. All Branches submitting resolutions shall have a representative ready to move and speak on the resolution once the resolution is accepted for discussion at a regular, special or Annual General Meeting.
86. Where a Branch does not send its full quota of delegates to the Annual General Meeting, it may use proxies. A Branch sending no delegates may appoint any accredited delegate as the carrier of proxies for the number of delegates to which the Branch is entitled. Proxy cards may only be used by designated delegates.
ELECTION OF OFFICERS
87. The election of Officers for the Association, Regional Districts and Branches shall be by Secret Ballot Vote. Tellers shall be appointed to distribute, collect and count the Ballots. A majority of the members present and voting, (50% Plus 1) shall be required to elect the officer. Should there be more than two candidates for office and no one candidate has received a majority, then the candidate with the lowest number of votes shall be removed and another vote held with the remaining candidates. This shall continue until a candidate is elected by a majority of the members present and voting.
88. The seal of the Association shall be kept in the custody of the Administrative Assistant and must be affixed to all official documents, resolutions or recommendations to Provincial or Federal government authorities.
89. The Association shall not exercise any borrowing powers.
90. The books and records of the Association may be inspected by any member in good standing if at least two week’s written notice is given to the Association Secretary/Treasurer. The meeting shall be a time and place convenient for the Secretary/Treasurer.
91. The books and records of a Branch may be inspected by any member in good standing if at least two weeks written notice is given to the Branch Secretary or Treasurer, as the case may be. The meeting shall be at a time and place convenient for the Secretary or Treasurer.
Revised May 6, 2017 (Houston AGM)