RHODE ISLAND TOWN AND CITY CLERKS' ASSOCIATION BY-LAWS

 

ARTICLE I - NAME

 

This Association of the several town and city clerks within the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations shall be identified as the "Rhode Island Town and City Clerks' Association" hereinafter referred to as (Association).

 

This Association shall be affiliated with the "New England Association of City and Town Clerks" hereinafter referred to as (NEACTC).

 

ARTICLE II - PURPOSE

 

It shall be the purpose of this Association to promote the general welfare of the 39 municipalities of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations and to afford better liaison between all of the duly qualified town and city clerk’s therein; to assist development, exchanges and dissemination of information, ideas and techniques relating to municipalities within the state.

 

The Association shall not engage in or endorse any activities that may be political or sectarian and shall confine its activities to service to the several towns, cities, the State of Rhode Island, and the United States of America.

 

ARTICLE III - MEMBERSHIP

 

A.   ACTIVE MEMBERS (voting members)

1.   Town CIerks

2.   City Clerks

3.   Recorders of Deeds

4.   Probate Court Clerks

5.   Deputy Clerks/Assistant Clerks

6.   Election Officials (as defined by RIGL 17-1-2, Sec. 5)

 

B.   RETIRED MEMBERS (non-voting members)

Upon retirement, active members may continue membership in the Association. A retired member may be appointed to a committee as a voting member.

 

C.   ASSOCIATE MEMBERS (non-voting members)

This class of membership shall be available to those who are not eligible for active, retired, or corporate membership, but who are interested in the improvement of methods of government and who subscribe to the objectives of the Association. This will include municipal court clerks and licensing clerks.

 

D.  CORPORATE MEMBERS (non-voting members)

This membership shall be available to those businesses and corporations who are not otherwise eligible for active, retired or associate membership, yet are interested in the improvement of methods and administration of government and who subscribe to the objectives of the Association.

 

ARTICLE IV - OFFICERS

 

The following officers of the Association shall be elected for a two year term. No person may hold office for more than two consecutive terms. The officers shall perform the duties usually pertaining to their office and such other duties as may be prescribed by the Association.

 

Candidates must have been an active member of the Association for at least one year and must have served on a Standing or Special Committee. Any of these requirements may be waived by the Executive Committee. Vacancy in any office shall be filled by a majority vote of the Executive Committee, excepting that if a vacancy in the office of President shall exist, the Executive Vice President shall assume that office for the unexpired term of his/her predecessor.

 

A.   PRESIDENT

1.   The President shall preside at all meetings of the Association. It shall be the duty of the President to recognize all retired clerks from the previous year at the annual meeting. The meetings of the Association shall be conducted by the President and in his/her absence or inability to function, by the next ranking officer present, in accordance with Article IV of the bylaws.

2.   The President, with the advice of the Executive Committee, shall prepare and present to the annual meeting of the Association for its adoption, a budget which shall set forth the estimated expenditures of the Association for the ensuing fiscal year.

 

B.   EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT

1.   he Executive Vice President, in the absence or inability of the President, shall perform the duties of the President.

 

C.   TREASURER

1.   The Treasurer shall have the care and custody of the funds of the Association. The Treasurer may be required to give bond in such amount as the Executive Committee may require

2.   The Treasurer shall present a financial report to the Association at all quarterly meetings.

 

D.  SECRETARY

1.   The Secretary shall keep the records of all meetings of the Association and of the Executive Committee, shall send notices of meetings when required and attend to all the correspondence of the Association.

 

Anyone of the above requirements may be waived by the Executive Committee.

 

Vacancy in any office shall be filled by a majority vote of the Executive Committee, excepting that if a vacancy in the office of President shall exist, the Executive Vice President shall assume that office for the unexpired term of his/her predecessor.

 

ARTICLE V - ANNUAL MEETING AND NOMINATIONS

 

There shall be an annual meeting held in the month of June, beginning in 1981, and in each June thereafter, in a location designated by the Executive Committee, at which not less than fifteen active members shall be in attendance for the purpose of nominating and electing a slate of officers as provided in Article IV, Section (A) to (D) inclusive

 

Fifteen members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of any business by the Association

 

Ninety days prior to the date of the annual meeting, the President shall appoint a Nominating Committee consisting of five active members, one from each county, none of whom shall be officers of the Executive Committee, and the President shall also designate the chairperson of said Nominating Committee. It shall be the duty of the chairperson of said Nominating Committee to notify, in writing, by fax or by electronic means, all members of the Nominating Committee that a meeting will be held and to specify the date, time and place of said meeting

 

It shall be the duty of the Nominating Committee to solicit qualified candidates for the Executive Committee for the following two years to be voted on at the annual meeting. The candidates will be presented in writing, at least thirty days prior to the annual meeting, to the Secretary, who shall forthwith notify the membership by correspondence of the Nominating Committee's recommendations so that the said slate of nominees shall be voted upon at the annual meeting.

 

Counter nominations to the said committee's slate or to any office, may be made from the floor at the annual meeting

 

Election of such officers shall be held at the annual meeting via "voice vote", or by secret ballot if so voted by a majority of the active members present at said meeting.

 

At the September meeting, the newly elected President and the newly elected officers will subscribe to an oath of office, become installed in their official capacity for the term elected, and each officer shall engage his/her office for the ensuing term of two years from the meeting date in September, or until his/her successor is duly elected and qualified.

 

Quarterly meetings are to be held in September, January, and April, following the annual meeting in June.

 

ARTICLE VI - ANNUAL DUES

 

A.   ANNUAL DUES

Annual dues for active, retired, associate and corporate members in the Association shall be as follows:

 

A. Active members

$ 50.00

B. Associate members

$ 40.00

C. Retired members

$   5.00

D. Corporate members

$100.00

 

If for any reason the member is replaced, dues paid to the Association by the preceding member will transfer to the succeeding member for the remainder of the year.

 

Active members in good standing with the Association may bring additional office staff to any educational session subject to applicable registration fees.

 

B.   MEMBERSHIP PERIOD I FISCAL YEAR

 

Annual dues for membership in the Association shall cover one full year, effective July 1 of each year and annually thereafter.

 

ARTICLE VII - EXPENDITURES

 

Any reasonable expenditure pertaining to the business of the Association shall be paid by the Association. By signature of the Treasurer, expenditures may be made for amounts not to exceed $500.00 without the vote of the Association, provided that such expenditures are ratified at the next meeting of the Association.

 

The President of the Association may be reimbursed up to $700.00 annually for expenses to attend the annual International Municipal Clerks Conference and the New England Municipal Clerk's Conference. Expenses shall be limited to registration, transportation and lodging.

 

Scholarships awarded, as identified in Article VIII, for the New England Municipal Clerks Institute and Academy (NEMCI&A) shall be in an amount to be determined annually in the budget and this amount will include the Henry Paquin Scholarship.

 

ARTICLE VIII - SCHOLARSHIPS

 

The criteria for the Association scholarships shall be set by the Scholarship Committee.

 

A.   RITCCA HENRY PAQUIN SCHOLARSHIP

1.   The scholarship will be for full payment of one year's tuition for the New England Municipal Clerks Institute (NEMCI).

2.   The scholarship will be awarded to a first year institute applicant whose city or town is unable to provide funding.

3.   The scholarship shall be awarded to a City or Town Clerk.

4.   The scholarship will be awarded to a Deputy in the event that no eligible City or Town Clerk applies.

5.   In the event the Association has no first year institute applicants, a second or third year applicant may be considered.

6.   The recipient must be an active member of the Association.

 

B.   RITCCA SCHOLARSHIP

1.   The Association shall determine annually the amount of monies to be allocated in the annual budget. Scholarships are only for those applicants who have been denied funds from their municipalities.

2.   Scholarships shall be awarded to students attending the New England Municipal Clerk’s Institute and Academy.

3.   Scholarships will be limited to one person per office, with the Clerk having first preference.

4.   Applicant must be a municipal clerk or deputy/assistant clerk.

5.   The Scholarship Committee will give priority to first year institute applicants.

6.   Applicant must be a current member of the Association for at least one year.

7.   Applicant must be a current member of the NEACTC for at least one year.

8.   Applicant must not be a member of the Scholarship Committee at the time of application.

9.   Applicant must have requested funds from his/her municipality and include a letter of denial or partial funding for such funds.

10. Applicant shall disclose at the time of application if they have applied for IIMC funds.

11. Deadline for filing an application shall be determined by the Chair of the Scholarship Committee in order to meet the deadline set by NEACTC and NEMCI&A.

12. Scholarship Chair will notify the applicant, RITCCA Treasurer, and the NEACTC and NEMCI&A Joint Chair by the deadline set by NEACTC and NEMCI&A.

13. Any exception to the above criteria will be reviewed by the Scholarship Committee and a recommendation will be forwarded to the Executive Board for final determination on a case-by-case basis.

 

ARTICLE IX - COMMITTEES

 

All committee members shall be appointed by the President. Unless otherwise specified, all committees shall consist of a minimum of three active members. The President shall appoint one of those members as Chairperson or two designated as Co-Chairpersons. In the event of insufficient members or members that have recused, the President may make a substitute appointment and set the terms of those appointments.

 

Meetings of the Standing Committees and/or Special Committees may be called by the President. Notice of such meetings shall be sent by mail, by fax or by electronic means, to the members of said committees by the Secretary, not less than three days prior to the holding of such meeting, in which event a quorum, as hereinafter provided, shall transact the business for which such meeting is called.

 

All committees may include a retired member as defined under Article Ill, Section B, who shall be a voting member of that committee. No retired member shall serve as Committee Chair.

 

A quorum for a meeting of any Standing Committee or any Special Committee shall be a majority.

 

A.   STANDING COMMITTEES

Each Standing Committee member shall enter upon their official duties at the September installation of officers meeting and serve for a term of two years or until their successors shall be appointed.

 

1.   EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

The Executive Committee shall consist of the duly elected and qualified officers of the Association, as defined under Article IV. The President, within thirty days, shall appoint a Vice President from each of the five counties to serve on the Executive Committee.

 

Extraordinary business may be transacted by the officers and the Executive Committee sitting together in an executive meeting called by the President or, in the event of his/her inability to be present or to function, by the Executive Vice President, or by request of two-thirds of the Executive Committee.

 

Except as the by-laws otherwise expressly provides, the Executive Committee shall have the powers and duties as follows:

a)   Have the authority to carry out the functions of the Association between meetings;

b)   Have the authority to undertake any other actions consistent with Article II upon majority vote;

c)   Make recommendations to the Association regarding amendments to the by-laws;

d)   Have the power and authority to decide matters relating to the business of the Association and shall report all actions taken, if a vote is required, at the next scheduled meeting of the Association;

e)   Meetings of the Executive Committee may be called at any time by the President or by any three of its members by a forty-eight hour notice given in writing, by fax, by electronic means or by telephone;

f)    Minutes of the meetings shall be kept by the Association Secretary and forwarded to the membership and any business of the Executive Committee will be reported by the President at the next quarterly meeting.

 

2.   LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE

It shall be the duty of the Legislative Committee to:

a)   Have charge of matters pertaining to legislation;

b)   Keep the membership informed of all proposed changes in the law relating to municipal government and recommend such action as may be necessary;

c)   Formulate annually the legislative program of the Association based on a majority vote of the membership;

d)   With the approval of the membership, shall act as the representative of the Association and take part in meetings of the Rhode Island General Assembly; and if such members are unable to attend, the President and/or County Vice President shall represent the Association at said meeting;

e)   Create and update procedures and timetables for preparing the legislative program and for advocating for or against legislation as approved by the Executive Committee at the January quarterly meeting.

f)    The President of the Association and the chairperson of the Legislative Committee, or his/her designee, shall meet with the Executive Director of the Rhode Island League of Cities and Towns to convey and discuss the position statements of the Association in regard to proposed legislation in an effort to gain the League's support;

g)   Should the members of the Legislative Committee be unable to attend committee meetings or sessions of the General Assembly when proposed changes in the laws relating to municipal government are addressed on which the Association has developed a position statement, the following procedure shall be instituted in an effort to insure that the Association is represented at said meeting or session:

i.    The Chairperson of the Legislative Committee shall request the members of the Legislative Committee to contact the County Vice-Presidents and notify them of the committee meeting or session of the General Assembly when proposed changes in the laws relating to municipal government on which the Association has developed a position statement is scheduled to be addressed and request them to attend.

ii.   The County Vice-Presidents in turn shall notify the respective members of their counties when proposed changes in the laws relating to municipal government on which the Association has developed a position statement is scheduled to be addressed and request them to attend.

 

In the event that an emergency arises necessitating immediate action in a legislative matter, the chairperson of and/or such members of the Legislative Committee, as may be readily contacted by the President, shall have full power to record the Association in favor, or in opposition to any legislative bill before a state Legislative Committee, as the interests of the Association may appear and warrant, with the consent of the Executive Committee.

 

3.   ELECTIONS COMMITTEE

It shall be the duty of the Elections Committee to:

a)   Serve as a liaison between the Association and all the State Election Officials, including the Secretary of State's office and the Board of Elections on election matters;

b)   Make periodic reviews of election laws, make recommendations for changes via legislation;

c)   Encourage workshops on office procedures or "How To's" relating to implementation of new election laws;

d)   Keep an up-to-date mailing list of election contacts in various cities and towns in the State;

e)   Act as distribution point of election information (legislation);

f)    Set aside one week a year as "Voter Awareness Week" by proclamation of the Governor;

g)   Lobby on election legislation under the same conditions as outlined for the Legislative Committee in Article IX.

 

4.   EDUCATION COMMITTEE

It shall be the duty of the Education Committee to:

a)   Make known existing programs of continuing education for municipal clerks;

b)   Establish courses and seminars on current topics of concern;

c)   Establish courses and seminars which will be of benefit in the efforts to attain professional recognition;

d)   Work in cooperation with the State Division of Municipal Finance or its successor for the annual conference;

e)   Coordinate educational programs to assist with certification requirements.

 

5.   SCHOLARSHIP COMMITTEE

It shall be the duty of the Scholarship Committee to:

a)   Formulate policies, procedures, and timetables for the Association's scholarship program;

b)   Review and recommend disbursement of scholarships.

 

Any member of the Scholarship Committee being considered for a scholarship for themselves or their municipality shall recuse themselves.

 

B.   SPECIAL COMMITTEES

Special Committees may be established by the President to perform duties defined in their creation. These committees shall be responsible for reporting in the same manner as the Standing Committees. There are no term limits on Special Committees

 

1.   NOMINATING COMMITTEE (refer to Article V)

 

2.   MEMBERSHIP COMMITTEE It shall be the duty of the Membership Committee to:

a)   Review, develop and recommend ideas for encouraging and promoting membership;

b)   Identify and recommend qualified candidates;

c)   Distribute Membership Form annually to existing membership by April 30;

d)   Maintain membership database and distribute to the Executive Committee and Webmaster quarterly;

e)   Follow-up with non-renewals by June 15;

f)    Advise Executive Committee of retirements, vacancies and new members;

g)   Attend to such other matters as the Executive Committee may determine;

h)   Report to the Association as called upon by the President.

 

3.   TECHNOLOGY COMMITTEE The Technology Committee shall consist of the Rhode Island Webmaster for the New England Association of City and Town Clerks (NEACTC) and at least two other members. The Webmaster serves as the chair of the committee. It shall be the duty of the Technology Committee to:

a)   Maintain and post information on the Association’s website;

b)   Review the content on the website following the annual meeting and compile updates to be sent to the Webmaster, such as committee member listings, by-law amendments, minutes, etc.;

c)   Solicit sponsorship of the website; review fees and approve applications;

d)   Inform the Association of technological changes impacting Town Clerks and recommend modifications in procedures concerning technology and assist and recommend solutions when changes are proposed;

e)   Report to the Association as called upon by the President

 

4.   BY-LAWS COMMITTEE It shall be the duty of the By-laws Committee to:

a)   Meet annually to review the by-laws to assure they are meeting the needs of the Association;

b)   Compile a list of proposed amendments and discuss as needed with the Association;

c)   Follow procedures in Article XI Amendments to the By-laws;

d)   Report to the Association as called upon by the President.

 

5.   FUNDRAISING COMMITTEE It shall be the duty of the Fundraising Committee to:

a)   Organize 50/50 raffles at quarterly meetings;

b)   Organize “Basket Raffle” at annual meeting in June;

c)   Coordinate with the Annual Conference Committee to generate funds to offset the costs associated with the New England conference when it is hosted in Rhode Island;

d)   Report to the Association as called upon by the President.

 

6.   HANDBOOK COMMITTEE It shall be the duty of the Handbook Committee to:

a)   Update the Rhode Island Town and City Clerk’s Handbook annually, upon the adjournment of the General Assembly;

b)   Review changes to State rules, regulations and laws that affect the everyday duties and responsibilities of clerks across the State;

c)   Ensure the handbook is distributed as updated to all 39 city and town clerks;

d)   Report to the Association as called upon by the President.

 

7.   ANNUAL CONFERENCE COMMITTEE

All members of the Association are encouraged to participate. The Chair of the Committee shall be appointed by the President. It shall be the duty of the Annual Conference Committee to:

a)   Setup and coordinate all the activities associated with the New England Conference when it is hosted in Rhode Island;

b)   Select a conference location and venue;

c)   Coordinate with the Fundraising Committee to generate funds to offset the costs associated with the conference;

d)   Coordinate lodging, food, educational speakers, activities, themes, banquet, entertainment, conference materials, gifts, exhibitors, etc.;

e)   Report to the Association as called upon by the President.

 

ARTICLE X - AFFILIATIONS

 

A.   STATE OFFICE OF MUNICIPAL FINANCE or its successor

The Association receives technical support and informational services from the Office of Local Government Assistance within the State Division of Finance. This Office, popularly known as the Office of Municipal Finance, assists the Association in planning its educational programs for the quarterly meetings and the annual conference in June, as well as information surveys and educational opportunities of interest to Town & City Clerks in Rhode Island.

 

B.   STATE DESIGNATION

All members of the Association in good standing who have received the professional designation of Certified Municipal Clerk (CMC) and/or Master Municipal Clerk (MMC) from the International Institute of Municipal Clerks (IIMC) shall be forthwith awarded a corresponding title from the Association.

 

Those achieving the designation of CMC shall be awarded the title RICMC, and those achieving the designation MMC shall be awarded the title RIMMC. These titles shall be held by the designee for his/her lifetime unless removed by the Association for cause; such removal requiring the approval of a vote of two-thirds of the membership; present at any meeting of the Association.

 

ARTICLE XI - AMENDMENTS TO THE BY- LAWS

 

Proposed amendments to the by-laws shall be in writing, setting forth the particular change or changes proposed and shall be filed with the President. The membership shall be furnished a written copy of any and all proposed amendments not less than thirty days prior to the annual meeting.

 

When an amendment is filed during an annual meeting, these amendments may be voted on during that particular session if it be the pleasure of the majority of the members in attendance.

 

Proposed amendments to the by-laws may be voted on only during an annual meeting. It shall require a two-thirds majority of the active members voting thereon to adopt an amendment to these by-laws.

 

Except as otherwise provided, each adopted by-law amendment shall become effective immediately upon declaration of its adoption

 

ARTICLE XII - POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

 

All policies and procedures required by these by-laws should be reviewed for changes at least once every two years, beginning in 2015.

 

If there are any questions as to parliamentary practices or procedures, the current edition of Robert's Rules of Order, Newly Revised, shall govern.

 

ARTICLE XIII - NOTICES

 

All notices and other materials that must be provided to the membership in writing may be sent through the mail, by fax, by e-mail or by any other electronic media that has been approved at a quarterly meeting or the annual meeting by a majority of those voting. Any member, who does not have access to an approved electronic media, shall receive the notice or other material by mail, fax or e-mail.

 

ARTICLE XIV – DISSOLUTION

 

Should the RITCCA cease to exist as an association with no successor association organized, all monies of the RITCCA will be donated to the NEACTC to continue the educational opportunities for RI Clerks and Election Officials.

 

These by-laws were amended:

1977; 1979; 1980; 1981; 1983; 1990; 1996; 1999;2000;2002;2006;2007;2013; 2016; 2018

 

 

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