The name of this organization shall be The American Council of the Blind of Ohio, Greater Cincinnati Chapter.
The purpose of this organization shall be to strive to meet the needs of all legally blind (hereinafter referred to as blind) persons in all major areas of life. These efforts shall include, but not be limited to the following:
2.1. To increase employment opportunities and improve working conditions for blind individuals;
2.2. To broaden the range of and access to social and recreational activities;
2.3. To increase public understanding of the nature and meaning of blindness in such areas as education, employment, transportation, recreation, and housing.
This organization shall be open to all persons, whether blind or sighted, having an interest in the goals and purposes of this organization as stated in article 2 of this constitution. Considerations of membership and dues are specified in article 1 of the bylaws.
All active members shall have the right to vote. Conditions of active member are specified in article 1.2 of the bylaws. The presiding officer shall vote when a tie occurs. In the case of election of officers, eligibility of voting members being specified in Article 4.1 of the bylaws, members may vote, including the presiding officer.
The officers of this organization are subject to the following:
5.1. Are elected at the annual business meeting by majority vote of the active membership to two year terms.
5.2. The president and vice president must be legally blind.
5.3. LIMITATION OF TERM OF OFFICE: No officer shall be elected for more than two consecutive 2 year terms in a given position. The restrictions on a consecutive number of terms held by an officer may be waived for any given election, for that election only, by a special vote of a simple majority of the membership assembled.
5.4. The duties and responsibilities of the officers of this organization are as follows:
5.4.1. PRESIDENT: The president shall preside at all meetings, appoint committees to the extent permitted by the constitution and the bylaws, prepare and deliver a report to the annual business meeting, and serve in such other capacities as may be prescribed in the constitution and the bylaws.
5.4.2. VICE PRESIDENT: The vice president, in the absence of the president, shall perform the duties of the president and shall discharge such other duties and exercise such other powers as may be conferred upon, or delegated to that office by the president or the membership.
5.4.3. SECRETARY: The secretary shall record the proceedings of all meetings of the organization, maintain and certify the membership rolls, keep and maintain copies of all records, conduct all general correspondence, and serve in such other capacities as may be prescribed in the constitution, the bylaws, or assigned to the secretary by the president or the executive committee. Additionally, the secretary shall furnish the membership with a summary of meeting minutes and official actions taken, at the next general meeting.
5.4.4. TREASURER: The treasurer shall receive and disburse funds, maintain custody of and maintain the accounts and financial records of the organization, prepare financial reports to be delivered at meetings, certify those eligible to vote at any meeting, prepare an annual financial report to be delivered at the annual business meeting, and serve in such other capacities as may be prescribed in the constitution, the bylaws, or assigned to the treasurer by the president or the executive committee. Additionally, the treasurer shall forward to the ACB-O treasurer, the annual dues and members’ names in accordance with the requirements of the ACB-O.
5.4.5. EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE: The Executive Committee is the designation for the elected officers of this organization assembled, that is, president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, and past president. The Executive Committee shall act in matters relating to the corporation which require attention between meetings of the membership. Actions taken by the executive committee, decided by a majority vote of that committee, are subject to the review of the membership and may be altered by a majority vote of the membership assembled. Any such actions taken by this committee must be reported at the next membership meeting.
6.1. Meetings shall be held once a year minimally, which shall be the annual business meeting held as the first meeting of the calendar year.
6.2. The executive committee shall call additional meetings at its discretion.
6.3. A quorum of the membership must be present to conduct an official meeting. Quorum is defined in article 7.1 of the bylaws.
6.4. When procedures other than those outlined in this Constitution are needed, Robert’s Rules of Order, Revised, shall govern.
7.1. STANDING COMMITTEES: This organization shall have the following standing committees: Constitution and Bylaws, Finance, Grants and Awards, Membership, Publicity, and Recreation.
7.2. OTHER COMMITTEES:
7.2.1. NOMINATING COMMITTEE: In the year previous to the election, the election being held in January of even numbered years, the president shall appoint a committee to prepare a slate of willing candidates for the elected offices of this organization. The committee shall submit said slate at the meeting of November previous to the election. Additional candidates may be nominated from the floor at this time or at the time of election. A candidate, to be eligible to run, must be an member in good standing for at least six months prior to election.
7.3. The president is responsible for appointing the chair of each standing committee within 30 days after taking office.
Amendments to the constitution or the bylaws may be approved only at a membership meeting where a quorum of active members is present.
8.1. Amendments to the bylaws require a simple affirmative vote for passage. Amendments of the bylaws may be introduced at the same meeting at which the amending vote is taken.
8.2. Amendments to the constitution require a two-thirds affirmative vote for passage. Notice of proposed amendments to the constitution must be published and in the hands of the membership at least 2 weeks prior to the meeting at which the vote for passage is taken. Announcement of such amendments at a previous meeting will satisfy the requirement of prior notice.
No part of the net earnings of the corporation shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributable to its members, trustees, officers, or other private persons, except that the corporation shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth in Article 2 herein. No substantial part of the activities of the corporation shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation, and the corporation shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements) any political campaign on behalf of any candidate for public office. Notwithstanding any other provision of these articles, the corporation shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to be carried on by:
9.1. a corporation exempt from Federal income tax under Section 501 (C) (3) of the Internal Revenue code (or any corresponding provisions of future United States Internal Revenue Law;
9.2. a corporation, contributions to which are deductible under Section 170 (C) (2) of the Internal Revenue Code, or any corresponding provisions of future United States Internal Revenue law.
Upon the dissolution of the corporation, the Board of Trustees shall, after paying or making provision for the payment of all the liabilities of the corporation, dispose of all of the assets of the corporation exclusively for the purposes of the corporation in such manner or to such organizations or organizations organized and operated exclusively for charitable, educational, religious, or scientific purposes as shall at the time qualify as an exempt organization or organizations under Section 501 (C) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code (or any corresponding provision of future United States Internal Revenue law) as the Board of Trustees shall determine. Any such assets not so disposed of will be disposed of by the Court of Common Pleas of the county in which the principal office of the corporation is then located, exclusively for such purposes or to such organization or organizations, as said court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.
11.1. At least two copies of the Constitution and Bylaws, being amended or revised, shall be kept permanently by the secretary.
11.2. At the first regular yearly meeting, the current Constitution and Bylaws shall be reviewed.
11.3. So long as this organization remains an approved tax exempt corporation and contributions may be held as tax exempt by the contributor, Article 10 of this Constitution shall not be altered or abridged except to comply with changes in federal tax codes.
1.1. To Join: A prospective member shall appear at two meetings, the first time to become acquainted with the members and organization, and the second to request admission as a member. Acceptance shall be decided at that second meeting by a majority vote of the members present. Upon payment of dues, THAT INDIVIDUAL BECOMES A MEMBER.
1.2. ACTIVE MEMBER: An active member must meet the following qualifications:
1.2.1. Dues are current.
1.2.2. Has not missed more than the last three (3) consecutive regular meetings, or has just joined.
1.2.3. In cases of unusual circumstances, a member may appeal to the executive committee to be classified as an active member.
1.2.4. A member who owes the organization money forfeits rights to membership privileges until the debt has been recovered. The executive committee will maintain a record of individuals owing the organization and can initiate attempts to collect such debts.
1.3. STIPENDS: In order to receive stipends to seminars, workshops, conventions, etc.:
1.3.1 A member must be in good standing;
1.3.2. Must have attended four of the last 6 of the most recent regular meetings;
1.3.3. A majority vote of the members present at a given meeting has waved some or all of the previous conditions for a particular event.
Dues are paid annually based on a calendar year, payable any time in the calendar year, and shall not be prorated. Dues must be paid by February 15 in order for one to be represented and to have voting privileges at the national ACB convention. The dues and the several types of membership are as follows:
2.1. full members shall pay fifteen dollars annual dues.
2.2. full members who also hold life membership in the national ACB shall pay ten dollars annual dues.
2.3. Both Junior and student members shall pay ten dollars annual dues . Junior members are under 18 years of age and have no voting privileges. Student members are over 18 years and have voting privileges.
3.1. The president and treasurer, and any other individual(s) having signature access to the assets of this corporation shall be bonded for the approximate amount equal to the liquid assets of the organization.
3.2. The treasurer, or any alternative financial agent of the organization, may not disburse funds of this organization of more than three hundred dollars for any single transaction without first securing authorization through a majority vote of either the members or of the Executive Committee.
4.1. One shall be an active member in this organization, as described in Article 1.2 of these Bylaws, in order to vote on matters concerning this organization. However, one must be an active member for at least three months prior to an election to have the right to vote in that election.
4.2. Secret balloting shall be required when electing officers.
The time and site of monthly meetings shall be determined by a majority vote of the membership or by the Executive Committee in the absense of the membership.
6.1. For conduct detrimental to the organization, while representing the organization, any member may be expelled from the organization by a majority vote of the membership.
6.2. Malfeasance of office by any officer shall result in the expulsion of that officer from the organization upon a majority vote at any meeting, and legal action against that person shall be taken if warranted.
6.3. Anyone subject to the proceedings of expulsion from this organization shall be notified of the pending action no less than twenty days prior to that meeting, and must have the opportunity to speak in his / her own defense.
6.4. In light of behavior by any member detrimental to this organization or to other member(s) in connection with organization activities, the president may appoint a Disciplinary Committee to review and make recommendations to the membership or Executive Committee on actions to be taken. A member subject to such disciplinary action has the choice of requesting private hearing and decision before the Executive Committee or the more public procedure before the membership as described in this article. The Disciplinary Committee can recommend expulsion with a final decision being made by the membership or the Executive Committee. Such a disciplinary committee may be appointed only for individual cases and shall be dissolved immediately after making its recommendations.
A quorum consists of all those active members present at a particular membership meeting which must be greater than fifty percent of the current active membership of ACBOGCC.
Copies of all records, documents, and correspondence pursuant to the business of this organization, held by any officer, shall be maintained and kept in a readily available format for quick and convenient access. Such formats would include print, or electronic medium such as word processed documents, spread sheet, and database files, with the objective being that documents shall be readily deliverable in print or standard electronic format for audit purposes. All such information shall be made available only upon the direction and authority of the president or the Executive Committee.
9.1. GRANT POLICY: All grants of funds or services by this organization are purely voluntary and are made in the interest of the betterment of visually impaired persons in the community. this organization is in no way obligated to honor any particular requests for funds or services on any basis or criteria. However, grants must be based upon the furtherance of the goals and objectives as stated in Article 2 of the constitution of this organization and upon the decision of the Grants and Awards committee, the executive committee, and the membership assembled.
9.2. CRITERIA OF GRANT DISBURSEMENT: Stipends, grants, or awards may be for workshops, seminars, or various activities to increase knowledge of people who are blind on legislation, public policy, disabilities, or conditions of blindness. It is an objective of this organization to attempt to assist people who are blind, in some small way, to attend special events in recreation or the arts, or for special events geared to the needs and interests of blind persons, that assistance including but not being limited to expenses, transportation, and/or adaptations. This organization may consider modest grants for training facilities in regard to blindness, educational expenses for people who are blind, and adaptive equipment and/or technology for blind persons. However, a balance shall be maintained to serve the widest number of interests with a budgetary constraint that enables this organization to continue with a program of grants in future years.
9.3. PROCEDURE FOR GRANT REQUESTS: All requests for grants shall be submitted in writing and with as much detail as possible to the Grants and Awards Committee. Subsequently, the committee shall make an initial presentation of the request to the membership assembled. The Grants and Awards Committee shall review and refer such request to the Executive Committee with a notation of “recommend”, “do not recommend”, or “no recommendation”. The Executive Committee, with the consultation of the treasurer, shall be allowed at least 30 days to review the request before it is returned to the Grants and Awards committee with a notation of “recommend”, “do not recommend”, or “no recommendation”. Grant requests, after said procedure, shall be presented earliest possible by the Grants and Awards Committee to the membership assembled with notation of the various recommendations. Members of the Grants and Awards Committee and/or the Executive Committee shall be prepared to discuss their recommendations with the membership assembled. For a grant to be approved, a majority vote of the membership assembled is necessary. No request for grants may be taken directly to the membership. Prior review and recommendation by the Executive Committee is required.
9.5. NOTIFICATION OF GRANT APPROVAL: Requesters will be notified as soon as possible after a decision is rendered. Such notification may not necessarily include explanation of, or reasons, for a particular decision.
9.6. Requests for grants may be denied by the Grants and Awards Committee, the Executive Committee, or the membership assembled on the basis of insufficient information, on the basis that it is not within the grant guidelines of this organization, or upon budgetary constraints of this organization.