BY-LAWS OF THE BROWARD COUNTY VETERINARY MEDICAL ASSOCIATION, INC.
ARTICLE I – Name
Section A. The name of this organization shall be the Broward County Veterinary Medical Association, Inc.
ARTICLE II – Object
Section A. It shall be the object of this organization to:
1) Promote the highest professional relationship among its members and the public which they serve;
2) Provide standard procedures by which public and press relations, and other similar matters may be resolved to the mutual benefit and satisfaction of its members and the public.
3) Provide programs to further the professional education of its members;
4) Promote an atmosphere of friendship, cooperation, and good fellowship among its members, their families and their employees.
ARTICLE III – Membership
Section A. Membership shall be granted as follows:
1) Any Florida licensed veterinarian, who has not violated any of the provisions of the veterinary practice act of the State of Florida, shall be eligible for regular membership.
2) Membership shall automatically be allowed any eligible veterinarian who requests it, and becomes effective when dues are paid. This membership shall remain in effect unless a written objection to the prospective member is made by any member to the President within sixty (60) days following such payment of dues. In such instance, a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the membership present (if a quorum*) at any regularly scheduled or officially called special meeting shall be necessary to confirm membership. If membership is withheld, all dues paid shall be returned.
3) A member in good standing shall be entitled to all the rights and privileges of membership and shall be entitled to one vote on any measure brought before the organization for action.
4) A member shall have his name stricken from the rolls by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the membership present (if a quorum*) at any regularly scheduled meeting, or any officially called special meeting, if upon investigation violated any of the provisions of the veterinary practice act of the state of Florida, or is found to have grossly violated the principles of veterinary medical ethics of the American Veterinary Medical Association and the Florida Veterinary Medical Association. Exceptions may be made for minor infractions such as expired premise permits or other administrative infractions.
a.) Any members (a) who shall be convicted in a court of law of a felony or other crime, (b) who shall have his or her license to practice veterinary medicine in the state in which they reside or practice suspended or annulled, (c) who shall express malicious, derogatory or defamatory remarks affecting members and/or the Association, (d) who shall have grossly violated the principles of veterinary medical ethics of the American Veterinary Medical Association and the Florida Veterinary Medical Association, or (e) who shall not have paid dues, assessments as described in Article III, Section B, of the By-Laws. The evaluation of all facts upon which membership in the Association may be terminated shall be made by the Executive Board of Directors.
b.) In its discretion, the Executive Board of Directors may, in lieu of expelling a member, suspend his or her membership rights, or warn the member.
5) A member so deprived of membership shall have the right to appeal before a committee composed of the Executive Board of Directors of the association sitting as a Board of Appeal. Upon favorable recommendation of the Board of Appeal, and after the general membership has been informed of the outcome of the appeal hearing, the member’s name may again be brought before the general membership for approval or disapproval, the same two-thirds (2/3) vote being in effect.
6) Anyone shall also be automatically dropped from membership if he owes money other than annual dues to the Association for any reason for more than sixty (60) days from the date such debt is due. For example: fees for social functions; any properly voted fee or assessment. Such individuals so removed from membership shall not be re-instated until such fees, plus a ten dollar ($10.00) penalty and 1.5% penalty per month, are paid.
7) An honorary membership category shall be separate and distinct from the regular membership category. No annual dues will be required of members so designated, and they will have no voting rights at meetings. A two-thirds (2/3) of members present at any general meeting (if a quorum* is present) will be required to confirm such a nomination for membership. This membership may be for an unlimited or a limited time as so voted, or may be terminated by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the members present at any general meeting (if a quorum* is present should such a situation arise).
*A quorum shall be defined as 25 % of the current paid voting membership.
Section B. Dues
1) Regular member dues shall be determined annually by the Executive Board of Directors.
2) Dues shall become due June 1st and become delinquent if not paid by September 1st of each year.
3) Delinquent members shall have their names removed from the active rolls on September 1st and will not be entitled to attend meetings or vote until the delinquency is removed by payment of dues.
4) Any new member serving an approved internship, residency, or volunteer clinical program will have their dues waived from the first day of membership to the end of the first calendar year. He or she shall be entitled to all privileges of membership except voting privilege during the complimentary membership period.
5) Dues will be waived for members of the Executive Board of Directors during their term of office.
6) Dues are for one calendar year, beginning June 1st and ending May 31st.
ARTICLE IV – Officers
Section A. The officers of the association shall consist of a President, Secretary, Treasurer, Newsletter Chairperson, Social Director, and Continuing Education Director. These officers, plus the Immediate Past President shall constitute an Executive Board of Directors.
1) The Executive Board of Directors shall meet at least once every three (3) months with whomever they deem necessary in order to expedite the functions of the association and establish recommendations for the membership.
2) Reports of the Executive Board of Directors’ meeting will be made by the President at each business meeting of the general membership.
Section B. Elections and Vacancies of Offices
1) A biennial election of officers shall be held during the regular meeting of the month of November. (meetings are usually held in January, March, May, July, September, and November.) Term of office shall begin January 1st and shall be for a two-year period ending December 31st.
2) Sixty (60) days before the annual election, the President shall appoint a five (5) person nominating committee for the purpose of presenting a slate of officers to the general membership.
3) After the slate of officers proposed by the nominating committee has been presented to the general membership, the floor shall be open for nominations from the membership when requested by the President in the proper order for election procedures.
4) A majority vote of these eligible voting members present shall elect when a quorum of one quarter ( ¼ ) of the members is present.
5) Voting shall be by secret ballot, unless the candidate is unopposed, whereupon such candidate may be elected by acclaim.
6) Any resignation of an officer must be made in writing to the Executive Board of Directors, or verbally to the general membership at any duly called meeting.
7) In the event that vacancy occurs in any office(s) other than the presidency, the President shall have the power to appoint a replacement to finish the term of the vacated office(s).
8) Any member may be re-elected to the office he or she holds for one (1) additional consecutive two-year term if so voted by the membership. Once a member has vacated an office for one or more years, he or she is again eligible for re-election to that office.
9) Voting may be carried out by mail and/or e-mail ballot in the event that a quorum is not present at the election meeting.
Section C. Duties of Officers
I. The President
a. The President must serve at least one term on the Executive Board of Directors prior to becoming eligible for election.
b. The President shall preside over all meetings of the general membership, and shall have the power to call special meetings of the other officers and/or the general membership.
c. The President shall have the power to appoint committees and to name the chairman of such committees. The President shall be an Ex-Officio member of all standing and special committees.
II. The Secretary
a. The Secretary shall record the minutes of all meetings and shall report the minutes of the last meeting during the regular order of business. A permanent copy of all minutes shall be kept on file.
b. The Secretary shall conduct such correspondence deemed necessary by the President or by the general membership, and shall be charged with conducting all correspondence of routine nature which shall come to his attention through the ordinary activity of the association.
c. The Secretary shall preside at all meetings in the absence of President.
d. The Secretary maintain a current list of members in conjunction with Treasurer, and will conduct a roll call at each official meeting.
e. In conjunction with paragraph (d)’ above, the Secretary shall comply with Article V, Section F, of these by-laws.
f. The Secretary shall be responsible for the storage and safekeeping of property and/or equipment purchased by the association.
III. The Treasurer
a. The Treasurer shall be charged with the collection of all dues and assessments and shall make a report to the membership during the regular order of business.
b. The Treasurer shall be authorized to make all necessary disbursement, with the approval of the other officers, which may be necessary for the normal operation of the association.
c. Before retiring from office, the Treasurer shall make a Financial Report to the general membership. At the discretion of the Executive Board of Directors, this report will be prepared by an accountant appointed by the President.
IV. The Immediate Past President
a. The Immediate Past President shall be a member of the Executive Board of Directors.
b. Upon vacancy of this office, or lack of participation in functions of the office, the President will appoint a replacement upon the approval of the Executive Board of Directors.
V. Newsletter Director
a. The Newsletter Director shall be a member of the Executive Board of Directors.
b. The Newsletter Director, in cooperation with other members, shall compile and issue a digital “newsletter” at least bi-monthly to each member.
VI. Social Director
a. The Social Director shall be a member of the Executive Board of Directors.
b. The Social Director, in cooperation with other members, shall be responsible for arranging time and venue for any social events of the Association.
VII. Continuing Education Director
a. The Continuing Education Director shall be a member of the Executive Board of Directors.
b. The Continuing Education Director shall secure guest speakers and arrange time and venue for a minimum of five (5) bi-monthly continuing education meetings of the Association.
Section E. Suspension & Expulsion of Executive Board Officers
I. As provided in the By-Laws, the Executive Board of Directors may, by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the membership present (if a quorum*), expel any Executive Board Officer who has violated or refused to comply with any of the provisions of the By-Laws, or rules and regulations adopted by the Executive Board of Directors, or the terms of general membership as outlined in Article IV, Section A.
ARTICLE V – Meetings
Section A. There shall be at least one meeting every three (3) months.
Section B. Special meetings may be called at the discretion of the President of the time and place chosen by him or her.
Section C. A quorum for the purpose of conduction of a meeting shall be considered one quarter (1/4) of the regular paid membership.
Section D. Any veterinarian may be a guest for one meeting only. Thereafter, he or she must join the association or pay thirty-five dollars ($35.00) for each educational meeting he or she attends. He or she shall have no voice in discussions or vote in matters brought before this association.
Section E. No persons other than veterinarians may attend association functions unless specifically allowed or invited by the meeting notification or by the President.
Section F. The Secretary shall arrange for compliance with Section “D” and “E” by whatever means he or she deems necessary as approved by the Executive Board of Directors.
ARTICLE VI – Order of Business
Section A. The order of business at all regular meetings shall be as follows;
1) Call to order
2) Roll call
3) Minutes of last meeting
4) Treasurer’s report
5) Introduction of guests
6) Reports of committees
7) Report of the Executive Board of Directors
8) Unfinished business
9) New business
10) Election of new members (if necessary)
11) Election of officers (October meeting)
Section B. When the nature and character of the program deems it necessary, the President may ask for a voice vote to suspend the order of business, or change it.
ARTICLE VII – Committees
Section A. The President shall appoint the following standing committees, together with their respective Chairpersons:
1) Awards – three (3) members – The purpose of this committee will be to determine which individuals are most deserving of recognition by their peers. It will not be mandatory that any awards be given if so decided by the committee.
2) By-laws – Three (3) members – The purpose of this committee is to bi-annually review these by-laws and present any suggested changes to the Executive Board of Directors for their recommendations. Proposed changes to the by-laws as recommended by the Executive Board of Directors and/or the membership will be prepared and presented by this committee in accordance with Article VIII.
ARTICLE VIII – Alteration of By-laws
Section A. These by-laws may be altered or amended by a simple majority of the members who support, by mail or e-mail ballot, the proposed by-law change(s) recommended by the Executive Board of Directors.
Section B. Any article or section of these by-laws may be suspended during a single meeting by a unanimous consent of the members present if a quorum.
Section C. Any amendments or changes to these by-laws shall become effective immediately after the close of the November meeting.