Constitution and Bylaws Committee (C&BLC)
I would like to begin by acknowledging the C&BLC members that served this year: Steve Goolsby, Vice Chair; Edie Allison, John Brooks, John Hogg, Clint Moore and Terry O’Hare.
We have two amendments to bring to the floor of the house for vote at the
Annual Meeting in April:
- Membership Simplification Amendment (EC Resolution)
- Strategic Plan Amendment (C&BLC Resolution)
Items Reviewed by the C&BLC
The first issue the C&BLC reviewed was the Campaign Policies for Regions. We found there were no policies for the Regions and recommended that the EC apply the same policies that exist for the AAPG officer elections to the Regions.
We were asked to look at a Sponsor/Endorser Clarification Amendment that “Endorsers shall have personal knowledge of the applicant’s experience and ethical background for a total time period of not less than three (3) months.” The committee voted not to proceed with this amendment.
The EC asked us to review Article II Section 15 as they were having difficulties finding qualified Active Members to stand for office. There was a question whether the list of members who cannot be nominated for office (the list in Section 14) was too restrictive? The committee felt the current Bylaws were appropriate, however the six-year time commitment for presidential candidates may be the major obstacle to recruiting candidates. The committee suggests consideration of a reduction to the three-year Advisory Council obligation for past presidents.
The committee voted unanimously to bring the Strategic Plan Amendment to the floor of the House for vote. This amendment would have “any recommendations to the Executive Committee involving potential amendments to the Constitution and Bylaws shall also be forwarded to the House of Delegates for review and comment.” It was our feeling this amendment change would provide more involvement of the membership.
The Membership Communication and Coordination Committee, in an ongoing effort to simplify the membership process, recommended to the C&BLC the Membership Simplification Amendment that would eliminate the word “Active” as an adjective for members and move Honorary and Emeritus to Designations of Members. During the review of this amendment another option was recommended called the Membership Class Solution Proposal that would add Basic Member as an additional classification to the membership and retain the other existing membership classes.
Figure 1: Membership Proposals
The C&BLC did not feel it had enough background at the time to make a recommendation to bring forth either amendment, and thus voted unanimously to have both options discussed at the annual meeting. Then, based on the input from the annual meeting, we would formulate an amendment for 2013, if warranted. A month later, the EC voted to move forward a resolution for the Membership Simplification Amendment at the annual meeting. The delegates will have the option to keep the status quo by voting NO to the Membership Simplification Amendment or vote YES if they believe it has merit. The current membership classes and the two proposals are presented in Figure 1. In the last Delegates’ Voice we provided a forum for delegates to express their opinions or ask questions about the two Membership proposals. A summary of what was posted is provided in a section labeled “Membership Proposals Forum” later in this article.
Figure 2: Discussion compared to vote on the membership proposals.
Delegates will be asked to vote YES or NO on two amendments - Membership Simplification and Strategic Plan. As a result of the C&BLC request, and before we vote on the two amendments, the HoD Leadership has approved a presentation and discussion on the Membership Simplification Amendment and another option, the Membership Classification Proposal, which is not being proposed for vote, see Figure 2.
Amendments presented for Vote (see details):
I) Membership Simplification Amendment— A proposed amendment to Article 1, Sec 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 8 Article XIII, Sec 2 and 3, of the AAPG Bylaws—
- Remove the term “Active” from “Active Member”
- Make “Emeritus” and “Honorary” member classes special designations of “Member” instead of separate classes
II) Strategic Plan Amendment— A proposed amendment to Article V, Section 3, of the AAPG Bylaws—
“Recommendations to the Executive Committee which involve long-range planning and possible amendments to the Association Constitution and/or Bylaws shall also be forwarded to the Chair of the House of Delegates for submission to the members of the House of Delegates for their review and comment to the Executive Committee.”
This amendment would go into force only when the Advisory Council makes recommendations in the Strategic Plan to the Executive Committee on matters that may involve Constitution and/or Bylaw changes.
Membership Proposals Forum:
We had hoped by providing a forum on the AAPG Delegates’ Voice website that delegates and members would discuss, inform and provide insights to what is important to the membership prior to the annual meeting. We had only five comments and they are summarized below:
Membership Simplification Amendment – there were several comments to the effect that the simplification proposal is clear, concise, neat, tidy and simple. There were mixed comments moving the Emeritus and Honorary to a designation under Active membership.
Membership Class Solution Proposal – the Basic classification is a step forward to identifying the people we should encourage to be Active.
Several comments mentioned how disappointed they were that neither proposal addresses the geologic degreed and qualified “Associate” member problem. This is an issue that has been around too long and needs to be tackled. Why is Active Membership not worth a little time filling out the paperwork and getting sponsors?
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- How do amendments come to the floor of the House for vote?
- Resolution by the Executive Committee
- Resolution by a special constitutional committee (C&BLC) appointed by the President
- Resolution of the House of Delegates
- A proposal in writing signed by any fifty (50) members of the Association.
- What amendments will be voted upon at the Annual meeting in 2012?
- Membership Simplification Amendment
- Long-Range Planning Amendment
- Why are we having a discussion on two membership proposals at the 2012 Annual meeting? The C&BLC unanimously recommended to the HoD Leadership that both the Membership Simplification and Membership Class Solution proposals be discussed by the delegates with the input used to craft an amendment for vote in 2013. The HoD Leadership is allowing for the presentation and discussion of these options compared to the current Bylaws so that the delegates can make an informed vote.
- How do these membership proposals (Simplification or Class Solution) address the numerous Associate members that qualify to be Active members but have not applied for this membership status?
- Neither proposal moves Associates into “Active” members; this takes an action by the geo-degreed to fill out the application and get two sponsors and a reference.
- The Membership Simplification Proposal does not address this issue.
- The Membership Class Solution proposal would put the geological degreed associates in a new class called Basic.
- This is an issue that the Membership committee and HoD leadership continues to discuss and debate ways to address.