Bylaws of the Timberland Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
Updated January 30, 2017
Article 1. Name
The organization, formerly the “Nacogdoches Unitarian Universalist Fellowship”, will henceforth be known as the “Timberland Unitarian Universalist Fellowship”, hereinafter referred to as “The Fellowship”.
Article 2: Mission Statement
We Unitarian Universalists (UUs) envision a life filled with compassion for all, shared in beloved community, and lived in a just world. We commit ourselves to pursuing this vision faithfully, passionately, and humbly. We invite all who share our vision to join us in this spiritual journey. The Fellowship welcomes all persons without regard to affectional or sexual orientation, age, color, gender identity or expression, nationality, origin, physical or mental ability, race, sex, and without requiring adherence to any particular interpretation of religion or to any particular religious belief or creed.
Article 3: Membership
Section 3.1 Procedure for Joining
Any person 18 years of age or older who is in agreement with the purpose of the Fellowship may become a member by signing a membership card.
- Section 3.2 Voting
Members will become eligible voters thirty (30) days after having signed a membership card. For the purpose of any vote, eligible voters shall be defined by the official membership roll as determined by the secretary. The president will vote only in case of a tie.
- Section 3.3 Inactive Members
A member who for one year is voluntarily absent from all participation in fellowship activities or has submitted a letter of termination may be ruled inactive, and in such cases, may not vote at a meeting or serve as an elected officer or be included on the official membership roll. The board of Directors at its discretion may at any time strike names from the list of inactive members and adopt such rules as it may deem necessary with respect to the removal or suspension of any member on the inactive list.
Article 4: Affiliation
The Fellowship shall be a member of the Unitarian Universalist Association Southern Region. (southernregion@UUA.org)
Article 5: Fellowship Year
The fellowship year will begin on July 1st, and end on June 30th.
Article 6: Meetings
- Section 6:1 Procedure
All meetings where fellowship business is conducted shall observe Robert’s Rules of Order.
Section 6.2 Services
Regular services of the Fellowship shall be held every Sunday except for such Sundays as the president in consultation with the vice president/program chair shall declare open.
Section 6.3 Special Business Meetings
Special business meetings may be called by the president or upon petition by 25% of the membership. Written notice of such meetings shall be provided no less than (10) days prior to the scheduled meeting. Such notice shall state the date, time and purpose of the special business meeting. These meetings may be concluded before or after a regularly scheduled service.
Section 6.4 The Annual Congregation Meeting
The Annual congregational Meeting (ACM) shall be held by the end of July, the first month in the new fellowship year. This will give treasurer time to have accurate annual expense report. The meeting will be devoted exclusively to fellowship business. The agenda (and/or date change) for the ACM will be provided at least (10) days prior to the meeting.
Article 7: Officers
Section 7.1 Number of Officers
The Fellowship officers shall include a president, a vice president/program chair, a secretary and a treasurer.
- Section 7.2 The Nomination of Officers
A nominating committee, chaired by the immediate past president and including two additional members appointed by the president, shall propose a nominee for each office. Before the election the president will call for nominations from the floor.
- Section7.3 The Election of Officers
The officers shall be elected for two-year terms by a majority vote at odd-year ACMs beginning in 1997. Absentee votes will be counted only if they are received prior to the election.
- Section 7.4 Duties of the Officers
The president, as executive officer of The Fellowship, shall preside at meetings, appoint ad hoc committees for specific tasks, call special meetings, appoint replacements to fill unexpired terms, serve as chairperson of the Board of Directors, represent The Fellowship at public functions or designate a representative. President appoints newsletter and website chairmen.
The vice president/program chair shall serve as backup to the president, succeed to the presidency should that office become vacant, plan the fellowship programs and arrange for speakers. The VP will provide program information timely for current newsletter & website dissemination.
The secretary shall handle correspondence, keep records of meetings, file important documents and keep a current membership roster. Copies of minutes will be sent to Board of Directors. Copies of bulletins with # of service attendees and speaker presentations (when available) shall be filed in the church office. Important documents include: UUA Congregational Inventory for the TUUF congregation ID# 7825, the Certificate of Filing of the TUUF #40220601 to the office of the Secretary of State for our TX nonprofit status. In addition an IRS form #990 annually for zero base tax purpose to maintain our IRS EIN#81-4834430 which is on file with the bank for The Fellowship.
The treasurer shall serve as custodian of financial records, collect the offering and deposit said offering in The Fellowship’s bank account, pay all bills including speaker fees. Treasure will submit quarterly reports and a comprehensive financial report at the ACM.
- Section 7.5 Term Limits
Elected officers shall serve no more than two (2) consecutive terms in the same position. This should be the rule of order unless there are no volunteers to take these positions.
Article 8: Board of Directors
- Section 8.1 Members
The Board of Directors shall consist of the officers and the immediate past president.
- Section 8.2 Meetings
The Board of Directors may hold two regular meetings, preferably during the months of November and May. Quarterly member meeting will cover this requirement if 3/5 of board is present. The Board of Directors may be called into special session at any time by the president.
- Section 8.3 Purpose
The Board of Directors shall prepare a budget for the coming fellowship year, a copy of which shall be distributed to members at least ten (10) days prior to the ACM. At the ACM the proposed budget will be approved or denied by a majority of those present and voting. If the proposed budget is denied, it will be returned to the Board of Directors to be revised and resubmitted at a designated meeting to be held no more than thirty (30) days from the date of the ACM.
- Section 8.4 Budget Review
At its regularly scheduled midyear meeting the Board of Directors will review budget implementation and present a summary report to the membership.
Article 9: Finances
- Section 9.1 Withdrawals
Withdrawals from The Fellowship bank account can be made only by signature of the president, vice president or the treasurer which will be on the bank account. Bank changes should occur immediately after any of these officers change.
- Section 9.2 Financial Obligations
Any financial obligation for which provision was not made in the budget must be approved by the Board of Directors and authorized by a majority of the voting members if greater than $200. If budget is limited and expenses are paid privately by a member, it should be reflected separately on a line item designated as “purchase donations”.
- Section 9.3 Property
Title to all property and contracts relating thereto shall be taken and held by or made in the name of The Fellowship as set forth in the Articles of Incorporation. No real property held by The Fellowship shall be sold, mortgaged or otherwise disposed of until such time as the proposed transaction is approved by a majority of the voting members.
Article 10: Dissolution
The Fellowship can only be abolished by a two-thirds vote of the membership. On discontinuance of The Fellowship by dissolution or otherwise the assets are to be transferred to the Unitarian Universalist Southern Region, P.O. Box 560246, Orlando, Fl.\ 32856-0246. Phone: 407-894-2119 or877-216-2986 southernregion@UUA.org
Article 11: Amendments
The by-laws may be altered, amended or repealed in whole or in part by a majority of the voting members. Members shall be notified in writing as to the substance of the proposed change(s) no less than ten (10) days prior to voting.
Article 12: Indemnification
The Fellowship shall indemnify any person who is or was an officer, employee, agent, representative, member of the Board of Directors or member of any ad hoc committee against any liability asserted against such person incurred in the course of his or her duties or functions within The Fellowship to the maximum extent allowable by law, provided the person acted in good faith and did not engage in a act of omission or commission that was intentionally, willfully or wantonly negligent, or done with conscious indifference or reckless disregard for the safety of others. The provision of this article shall not be deemed exclusive of any other right to which such person may be entitled under any bylaw, agreement, insurance policy, vote of members or otherwise.