(latest revisions approved at the 2011 Annual Meeting)
ARTICLE I – Name
Section 1. The name of the Chapter (which is incorporated under the laws of the State of Georgia) shall be the GEORGIA CHAPTER, hereinafter referred to as the CHAPTER, of the SOIL AND WATER CONSERVATION SOCIETY INCORPORATED, hereinafter called the SOCIETY.
ARTICLE II – Objectives
Section 1. The objectives of this Chapter shall be development and advancement of the science and art of good land and water use and management and the promotion of conservation of soil, water, air, and related renewable natural resources, including without limitation, trees, grass, fish, wildlife, and all other forms of beneficial plant and animal life, and for these purposes to employ any appropriate means to educate and inform the people to the end that mankind may have the use and enjoyment of these resources forever.
ARTICLE III – Territory
Section 1. The State of Georgia shall be the territory of the Chapter. The headquarters shall be the address designated by the elected President.
Section 2. The Chapter shall be dived into four sections aligned by county as follows:
Section I (Northwest) – Bartow, Butts, Carroll, Catoosa, Chatooga, Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, Dade, Dawson, Dekalb, Douglas, Fannin, Fayette, Floyd, Forsyth, Fulton, Gilmer, Gordon, Gwinnett, Haralson, Heard, Henry, Lamar, Meriwether, Monroe, Murray, Paulding, Pickens, Pike, Polk, Rockdale, Spalding, Troup, Upson, Walker, Whitfield
Section II (Northeast) – Baldwin, Banks, Barrow, Burke, Clarke, Columbia, Elbert, Franklin, Glascock, Greene, Habersham, Hall, Hancock, Hart, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Jones, Lincoln, Lumpkin, Madison, McDuffie, Morgan, Newton, Oconee, Oglethorpe, Putnam, Rabun, Richmond, Stephens, Taliaferro, Towns, Twiggs, Union, Walton, Warren, Washington, White, Wilkes, Wilkinson
Section III (Southwest) – Baker, Ben Hill, Brooks, Calhoun, Chattahoochee, Clay, Colquitt, Crawford, Crisp, Decatur, Dooly, Dougherty, Early, Grady, Harris, Houston, Irwin, Lee, Macon, Marion, Miller, Mitchell, Muscogee, Peach, Pulaski, Quitman, Randolph, Schley, Seminole, Stewart, Sumter, Talbot, Taylor, Terrell, Thomas, Tift, Turner, Webster, Wilcox, Worth
Section IV (Southeast) – Appling, Atkinson, Bacon, Berrien, Bleckley, Brantley, Bryan, Bulloch, Camden, Candler, Charlton, Chatham, Clinch, Coffee, Cook, Dodge, Echols, Effingham, Emanuel, Evans, Glynn, Jeff Davis, Jenkins, Johnson, Lanier, Laurens, Liberty, Long, Lowndes, McIntosh, Montgomery, Pierce, Screven, Telfair, Toombs, Treutlen, Ware, Wayne, Wheeler
ARTICLE IV – Membership
Section 1. Membership in the Chapter shall be limited to members in good standing in the Society. All members of the Chapter shall have the privilege of the floor, upon recognition by the presiding officer, at any meeting of the Chapter and shall have the right to vote upon any proposition or at any election.
Section 2. Membership in the Chapter may be achieved by application to the Chapter. Membership will be maintained by payment of the annual dues of the Chapter and Society.
Section 3. Members shall be persons who are or have been engaged in practicing or teaching soil, water, and related natural resource conservation; carrying on research, technical assistance, or educational work therein; or administering activities related thereto; or otherwise having a personal interest in wise use of the natural resources.
Section 4. Membership in the Chapter may be terminated by voluntary written resignation, by failure to pay dues, or by action of the Executive Committee.
ARTICLE V – Officers
Section 1. Officers of the Chapter shall be a President, President-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, and four Section Vice-Presidents, each of whom shall be a member in good standing. No individual may hold more than one office in the Chapter at the same time.
Section 2. The President-elect, Secretary, Treasurer, and Section Vice-Presidents shall
be elected annually as hereinafter provided. Their terms of office shall begin immediately following the Chapter Annual Meeting, or on July 1 if the Annual Meeting has not yet been held, and terms shall continue until the end of the following Chapter Annual Meeting, or on July 1, if a Chapter Annual Meeting has not been held, except as provided in Section 3 of this article. The President-Elect automatically becomes President at the end of the Chapter Annual Meeting or on July 1, if the Annual Meeting has not yet been held.
Section 3. Each officer shall serve until a successor has been elected or appointed
and officially installed.
Section 4. Chapter officers shall serve for one year and terms of office shall begin and end as provided herein. They are eligible for re-election. Any Chapter member is eligible for election as a Chapter officer.
Section 5. Chapter officers shall be nominated by a nominating committee comprised of a minimum of two past presidents with the most immediate past president as chairman. The election shall be by written or electronic ballot submitted to the membership 30 days prior to the Chapter Annual Meeting. A candidate must receive a plurality of the votes cast to be elected.
ARTICLE VI – Duties of Officers
Section 1. The President shall be the Executive Head of the Chapter, shall issue notices of all meetings of the Executive Committee and the Chapter, and shall preside at all its business meetings and at meetings of the Executive Committee. The President shall have authority to call meetings, appoint Chairpersons and name members to committees. The President shall also serve as the primary delegate representing the Chapter at national meetings of the Society and shall assure Chapter representation if unable to attend him/herself.
Section 2. Should the President be absent or otherwise unable to serve, the President-Elect shall carry out the duties and responsibilities of the President. The President-Elect shall have the lead role in the planning and conduct of the Chapter Annual Meeting. In the event the President and the President-Elect cannot serve, the Executive Committee shall appoint one of the Vice-Presidents to serve.
Section 3. The Secretary of the Chapter shall keep a record of the proceedings of the Committee and Chapter; and keep safely and systematically all books, papers, records, and documents including award records belonging to the chapter or in any way pertaining to the business thereof.
Section 4. The Treasurer shall receive and be responsible for all funds of the Chapter and shall perform all other duties incident to the office. The accounts of the Treasurer shall be audited at the close of each year by an Auditing Committee appointed by the President and at such other times as directed by the Executive Committee.
Section 5. Section Vice-Presidents shall serve on the Executive Committee of the Chapter representing the members from their respective areas. They shall promote and coordinate the work of the Chapter in their sections, and shall preside over any section meetings. In the event a Section Vice-President is unable to serve, the Executive Committee shall appoint a member to serve in that position until the next election.
ARTICLE VII – Committees and Task Forces
Section 1. Standing or temporary committees and problem-oriented task forces, with the exception of the Executive Committee, shall be appointed by the President for any purpose within the scope of the objectives of the Society. Special temporary committees may be established by the President for like purposes not otherwise provided for. The President shall appoint members of all committees and task forces, except as otherwise directed by these bylaws. All committees and task forces shall report on their activities as directed by the creating authority. Temporary committees and task forces shall serve until their duties are accomplished, but may be dissolved upon a majority vote at any Executive Committee meeting. Members of standing committees shall serve until the end of the Chapter Annual Meeting and shall be eligible for reappointment. The standing committees shall be the Executive Committee, Membership Committee, Awards Committee, Nominating Committee, and such others as the Executive Committee shall deem necessary. No committee may expend funds of the Chapter unless authorized by the Executive Committee.
Section 2. The Executive Committee shall be composed of the President, President-Elect, Section Vice-Presidents, Secretary, Treasurer and Immediate two past Presidents. It shall be responsible for the routine operation of the Chapter and for developing a program of activities. It shall have the authority to take any action or to make any commitments not specifically delegated by the Chapter By-laws, but its activities shall be subject to review and approval or disapproval by the membership.
Section 3. The Nominating Committee shall prepare a slate of at least two nominees for each office and present it to the Executive Committee 45 days in advance of the Chapter Annual Meeting.
Section 4. With concurrence of the Executive Committee, the secretary shall mail (and/or email) ballots to the membership 30 days in advance of the Chapter Annual Meeting date, or before July 1 if a Chapter Annual Meeting has not yet been held. The ballot shall contain a list of at least one nominee (and preferably two) for each office, with the persons agreeing to allow their names to appear on the ballot and one blank space for write-in candidates. Ballots are to be returned the day prior to the meeting, or July 1, if the Annual Meeting has not yet been held. Ballots are to be tabulated by the Secretary and validated by the Executive Committee.
Section 5. Successful candidates will be announced at the Annual Meeting and ratified by the Chapter membership in session therein.
ARTICLE VIII – Meetings
Section 1. There shall be an annual meeting of the Chapter held at a specified time recommended by the Executive Committee and decided on by the Chapter, preferably at the Annual meeting in the preceding year. If a conflict should develop with the date selected, the Executive Committee will select an alternate date. The Secretary shall notify the Chapter’s membership of the exact date and place (set by the Executive Committee) at least 30 days in advance. Special meetings shall be called by the President upon written petition of not less than 10 Chapter members or whenever, in the opinion of the President, there is business which should be brought before the membership for action prior to the Annual Meeting. At least 15 days advance must be given of any special meeting. Any business which may properly come before the Chapter membership may be discussed and acted upon at the Annual Meeting. Only that business may be discussed or acted upon at a special meeting which has been announced by written notice sent by the Secretary to the Chapter membership at least 15 days in advance of such special meeting. A quorum at any Annual Meeting business session shall consist of 10 members in good standing. A quorum at any meeting of the Executive Committee shall be five (5) Committee members in good standing. The order of business and all parliamentary procedures at any meeting shall be in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order, revised.
Section 2. Section meetings within the State of Georgia shall he held to promote the affairs of this Society. The time and place for these meetings may be determined by the Section Vice Presidents for their respective areas. A minimum of one meeting per year shall be required, and additional meetings are encouraged at the discretion of the Vice-President.
Section 3. The Executive Committee should meet quarterly with at least two meetings during the year at a time and place designated by the President. Meetings may be called more often at his or her direction. Meetings may be in person, via video conference, or via teleconference, with at least five (5) Committee members present.
ARTICLE IX – Dues and Finances
Section 1. Chapter dues shall be determined by the Executive Committee and ratified for the ensuing year by the Chapter membership in Annual Meeting.
Section 2. Annual membership dues shall be payable within 60 days after each member’s anniversary date as set by the Society. Members in arrears shall be declared delinquent and shall thereupon forfeit all privileges of membership until dues are paid, except that the Executive Committee, for good cause shown, may approve the reinstatement of any delinquent member on payment of current dues but with remission of back dues to such extent as it shall deem proper.
Section 3. The fiscal year of the Chapter shall be July 1, through June 30. Each year the Executive Committee shall prepare an itemized budget for the coming year. The Treasurer may make expenditures within the provisions and limitations of the budget without further authorization. Otherwise no expenditures shall be made without express authorization from the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee may amend the budget at any time.
Section 4. The Society may receive gifts, bequests, donations, grants, or funds for any purpose within the scope of its objectives.
ARTICLE X – Publications
Section 1. The Chapter shall publish a Newsletter under the supervision of the President and the immediate direction of the Editor. The Editor shall be appointed by the President, under whose supervision he or she will work. The Newsletter shall be published quarterly or as often as necessary to keep members informed of important news and Chapter activities. The Chapter shall host a website under the supervision of the President and the immediate direction of the Webmaster. The Webmaster shall be appointed by the President, under whose supervision he or she shall work. Newsletters shall be posted on the Chapter website.
ARTICLE XI – Awards, Etc.
Section 1. The Chapter may, from time to time, at the discretion of the Executive Committee, offer meals or other awards in recognition of outstanding work or ability in the field of Natural Resources.
ARTICLE XII – Amendments
Section 1. The Bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of the membership voting, by mail, email, or in an Annual Meeting, provided the proposed amendment or amendments have been submitted to all members of the Chapter in writing at least 30 days in advance of the date set by the Executive Committee for voting on the amendments.
Section 2. The Bylaws, as amended, shall become effective immediately unless otherwise provided therein, when ratified by the membership. The ballot for any proposed amendment shall be mailed (or emailed), handled and counted as provided for in the election of officers.
ARTICLE XIII – Dissolution
Section 1. The Chapter is a non-profit organization without capital stock, dedicated to the furtherance of conservation for the benefit of the general public and not for the monetary profit or gain of its members.
Section 2. This Chapter may be dissolved by a resolution requesting dissolution passed by a majority mail vote of the membership, or by a majority vote of the members in a Chapter meeting called for that purpose provided that such notice of such action has been mailed to all members at least 60 days prior to closing date for mail ballots, or the date the vote is to be taken at the meeting.
Section 3. If dissolution is favorably acted upon in accordance with Section 2 of Article XIII, the last Executive Committee shall pay all just debts of the Chapter out of Chapter funds, and transfer all remaining moneys and other assets to the parent Society or to a non-profit organization with similar objectives. All records, correspondence and other papers shall be forwarded to the parent Society.