By-Laws

By-Laws for the Shire of Buckland Cross

 

1) Shire non-residents are eligible for shire offices as long as they are declared as non- resident officers and meet all other requirements for holding office.

2) Requirements for officer eligibility:
a. Officers must be paid SCA members who maintain their membership throughout their office term.
b. Members seeking to hold an office must be active locally (attending a majority of meetings and helping at shire events) for at least 1 year prior to office election in order to allow existing members to become acquainted with prospective candidates for office.

3) Rules for officers and offices:
a. Officer terms are 2 years each with a 4-year maximum consecutive term in each office.
b. Time holding a deputized office does not count toward the officer’s regular term or term limit for that office.
c. Each officer cannot miss more than 2 consecutive meetings.
d. Each officer must attend at least one meeting each quarter.
e. An office may be vacated whether voluntarily or involuntarily.
f. An officer may step down from office at any time without penalty.
g. When an office is vacated before the end of the regular election term, the position is deputized by an ad-hoc emergency vote so that a deputy officer can continue the office.
h. Each elected officer should choose a deputy to familiarize with the duties of his/ her office; the deputy should be familiarized enough to easily assume the office role, if required.

4) Nominations, appointments, and voting procedure:
a. Peer nominations and self-nominations are both permitted for office consideration.
b. Voting will occur on the regular schedule except if an emergency vote is necessitated by emergency circumstance.
c. In emergency circumstances, an officer can be appointed by the seneschal until a populace vote can be scheduled to elect a deputized officer.
d. For voting privacy and transparency, a voting jar (made from clear glass or other material) may be used; the jar or similar container will have its sides and top covered from view during voting but can easily be shown to the assembly after each vote is cast to ensure that all vote counts are accurate.
e. Each office may be voted on individually with each officer choice being represented by a different color stone, glass bead, or similar object.
f. Eligibility to vote is reserved for paid shire members in good standing. This includes those declared to be non-resident members of Buckland Cross.
g. Voting members will go up to the chosen voting container (jar, etc.) one by one and drop one vote (symbolized by one stone, bead, etc.) into the chosen voting container to represent their choice.
h. Every voting person gets one vote; officers or those running for an office are included in voting.
i. 60% of votes present must be obtained by a candidate in order to be voted into office.
j. Priority voting will be used whenever a candidate is running for multiple offices. (This means that multiple nominations will be voted first and single nominations will be voted last).

5) Removal of officers:
a. Officers may be removed from office if they are not fulfilling the requirements of their office (by not making minimal meeting attendance or by not completing their quarterly report)
b. Officers may also be removed from office if they are disrupting or actively impeding the enjoyability and/or progress of local activities.
c. Procedure for officer removal:
i. When an officer’s ability to fill his/her office comes into question, other current officers will first discuss the situation and decide whether it warrants definite removal or only potential removal of the officer in question.ii. Written Notice: The officer to be removed (or potentially removed) must be officially notified in writing at least 30 days in advance of the private hearing of Action Phase I (discussed below). All current officers must also be notified at least 30 days in advance of the hearing and invited to attend. All invited officers do not need to attend, but at minimum, the seneschal must be present along with a quorum of officers.
iii.Action Phase 1: The officer will be asked to attend a scheduled private hearing in the company of current fellow officers. The hearing will include a discussion of the current situation and the decided plan of action for addressing it. If the situation has been deemed by other officers to be serious enough to merit necessary removal, the officer may be encouraged to step down from office. If the officer under question for removal is a “no-notice/no-show” (did not show up for the private hearing, did not make an attempt to reschedule or communicate any schedule conflicts, and did not have an extenuating personal circumstance preventing attendance and/or communication), he/she will be automatically removed from office. If requested by the officer in question for accomodation, a timely rescheduling of the hearing is permissible.
iv. Provision of 90 Days: In the event that the officer would rather not step down, and at the discretion of other officers, 90 days may be granted as a probationary period for the officer to catch up on his/her duties and show that he/she is meeting the requirements of the office. A decision will be made by the officers at the end of a probationary period on whether to allow the officer in question to keep his/her office.
v. Action Phase 2: If an officer is removed, at the next populace business meeting after (and within 90 days of) officer vacancy, the populace will be debriefed by remaining officers. Nominations for a deputy to fill the vacant office will also be collected at this meeting, and voting for immediate election of the deputy officer will take place no later than at the following populace business meeting.

6) Election schedule:
a. For regular office terms, nominations will be held in November, elections in December, and terms will begin in January (every two years).
b. When an office is vacated outside of the regular election schedule, nominations will occur at the first populace business meeting following the vacancy, and voting with immediate start of officer duties will occur at the next populace business meeting following. If needed, emergency temporary appointment by the seneschal may take place prior to the first populace meeting in which nominations for a voted officer will be made.
* Election schedule footnote:All of the offices elected in December 2015 to begin in January 2016 will be a deputized, 1-year term; because the current seneschal’s term expires at the end of 2016, the other offices will be deputized until the expiry of the seneschal’s term; this decision is one chosen for convenience to enable all officers to be elected on a simultaneous schedule every 2-years thereafter, with the first regular synchronized term for officers to begin in January 2017.

 

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