2017 Proposed Bylaw Amendments

The following document of proposed bylaw amendments has been compiled by the PCB Parliamentary Team based on suggested revisions they received on behalf of PCB Leadership. The Parliamentary Team has also offered some amendments which generally clean up grammar and inconsistencies. Please review each proposed amendment to be presented for approval by the 2017 convention body in Pittsburgh.

Article IV: Membership
Original: (This is a whole new section.)
Revision:
Section 2. Registration
Membership in the Pennsylvania Counsel of the Blind shall be gained through a free registration process. Any individual or organization may register by:
A. directly contacting the PCB office
B. online registration through the PCB website
C. joining a local chapter or special interest affiliate of PCB.
Registration must be re-affirmed every two years to retain membership.

Explanation:
The change is to replace a dues-paying process for membership with a free registration process for membership.

Article IV: Membership
Original:
Section 2. Primary Chapter
Any person may join as many local chapters or special interest affiliates of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind as he/she chooses. However, in so doing, he/she must designate which chapter or special interest affiliate is to be the Primary chapter, the entity through which his/her PCB and ACB membership dues shall be paid and on whose membership roster he/she shall be listed for the purpose of determining the delegate count at the annual state convention. As a member of the Primary chapter he/she shall pay membership dues in the same amount as other members, and, like them, he/she shall be entitled to an individual vote. The exact amount of dues which he/she pays to any additional chapter or special interest affiliate shall be determined by that entity.

Revision:
Section 3. Chapter/Special Interest Membership
Any person may join as many local chapters or special interest affiliates of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind as he/she chooses. Regardless of multiple memberships, he/she will be entitled to only one vote. He/she may serve as delegate on behalf of only one chapter or special interest affiliate. Each chapter and special interest affiliate shall determine its own membership dues and collection process.

Explanation:
A person would no longer designate his/her primary chapter/special interest affiliate for the purpose of tracking his/her PCB and ACB dues. This section is also renumbered.

Article IV: Membership
Original:
Section 3. At-Large Members
Any eligible member who does not wish to join a Chapter or who resides in an area where no Chapter exists may be a At-Large member.

Revision:
Section 4. At-Large Membership
Any registered member who does not wish to join a Chapter will be an At-Large member of PCB. He/she shall be entitled to one vote.

Explanation:
This revision corrects a grammatical error changing “a” to “an”. It also notes an At-Large member is a registered member of PCB and he/she has one vote at the Convention. This section is also renumbered.

Article IV: Membership
Original: (This is a new section.)
Revision:
Section 5. ACB Membership.
As a state affiliate of the American Counsel of the Blind, PCB will provide complimentary ACB membership to any registered member of PCB who resides within Pennsylvania.

Explanation:
This section is new. It provides that PCB will pay ACB dues for its members who are Pennsylvania residents.

Article IV: Membership
Originals:
Section 4. Junior Membership
Section 5. Non-Profit Agency Membership
Section 6. For-Profit Corporate Membership
Section 7. Honorary Membership
Section 8. Lifetime Membership

Revisions:
Section 6. Junior Membership
Section 7. Non-Profit Agency Membership
Section 8. For-Profit Corporate Membership
Section 9. Honorary Membership
Section 10. Lifetime Membership
Explanation:
These sections are renumbered but content remains the same.

Article IV: Membership
Original:
Section 9. Dues
The annual membership dues for the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind shall be an amount recommended by the Board of Directors and approved by the membership at an annual convention. Dues are payable in advance and credited to the first day of January of each year. Dues are payable by members of chapters to their chapter treasurer. An officer of the chapter shall submit the names of its paid members along with their dues to the PCB Office. Members of special interest affiliates shall pay their dues to the treasurer of their special interest affiliate.
Dues for junior members shall be fifty (50) percent of dues paid by adult members.
Dues for non-profit agency members shall be two (2) times the dues paid by adult members.
Dues for for-profit agency members shall be (3) three times the dues paid by non-profit agency members.
Dues for special interest affiliates, currently fifty (50) dollars, shall be an amount recommended by the Board of Directors and approved by the membership at an annual convention.
Dues are payable by at-large members, non-profit agency members, for-profit agency members, and special interest affiliates directly to the PCB Office.

Revision:
Section 9 would be eliminated.
Explanation:
The free registration process replaces the dues collection process.

Article V: Composition and Compensation of the Board of Directors
Original:
Section 1. Composition of the Board of Directors
The officers, together with eight (8) elected Directors, shall constitute the Board of Directors of this organization. The officers shall be: President, 1st Vice President, 2nd Vice President, Recording Secretary, Treasurer, and Immediate Past President. The President, 1st Vice-President and 2nd Vice-President shall be blind or visually impaired.

Revision:
Section 1. Composition of the Board of Directors
The officers, together with eight (8) elected Directors, shall constitute the Board of Directors of this organization. The officers shall be: President, 1st Vice President, 2nd Vice President, Recording Secretary, Treasurer, and Immediate Past President. The President, 1st Vice President and 2nd Vice President shall be blind or visually impaired. All candidates for the Board of Directors must be registered members of PCB on record for more than thirty (30) days prior to the opening of the annual convention.

Explanation:
This section mandates that any person seeking a board position must be a registered member of PCB for more than 30 days prior to the opening of the annual convention.

Article VI: Powers and Duties of the Board of Directors

Original:
Section 3. Credentials
The Board of Directors, in consultation with the president, at the beginning of his/her term, shall appoint a Credentials Committee, comprised of at least two members of the Board of Directors and one member from among the membership. The Credentials Committee shall have the authority to determine whether a newly formed chapter is eligible for affiliate status, shall review whether a chapter’s bylaws, including all revisions, comply with the mission of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind, and is authorized to rule whether a member, chapter or special interest affiliate is in good standing.
In determining whether a chapter or special interest affiliate is in good standing, the Credentials Committee shall consider the following:

  1. Whether the chapter or special interest affiliate has maintained a minimum membership requirement as set forth in Article IX, Sections 3 and 4, whether the chapter or special interest affiliate has paid the appropriate membership dues, and whether the chapter has complied with the organization’s membership reporting requirements,
  2. Whether the chapter or special interest affiliate is complying with the organization’s physical accessibility policy, and;
  3. Any member, chapter or special interest affiliate negatively impacted by a decision of the Credentials Committee may appeal this decision to the entire Board of Directors, and as a last resort the assembled convention.

Revision:
Section 3. Credentials
The Board of Directors, in consultation with the president, at the beginning of his/her term, shall appoint a Credentials Committee, comprised of at least two members of the Board of Directors and one member from among the membership. The Credentials Committee shall have the authority to determine whether a newly formed chapter is eligible for affiliate status, shall review whether a chapter’s bylaws, including all revisions, comply with the mission of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind, and is authorized to rule whether a member, chapter or special interest affiliate is in good standing.
In determining whether a chapter or special interest affiliate is in good standing, the Credentials Committee shall consider the following:
1. Whether the chapter or special interest affiliate has maintained a minimum membership requirement as set forth in Article IX, Sections 3 and 4, and whether the chapter has complied with the organization’s membership reporting requirements,
2. Whether the chapter or special interest affiliate is complying with the organization’s physical accessibility policy, and;
3. Any member, chapter or special interest affiliate negatively impacted by a decision of the Credentials Committee may appeal this decision to the entire Board of Directors, and as a last resort the assembled convention.
Explanation:
This section removes the dues paying requirement.

Article VI: Powers and Duties of the Board of Directors
Original:
Section 4. Meetings
The Board of Directors shall meet at the time of the State Convention. It shall hold at least one (1) other regular meeting each year. Special meetings may be held either at the call of the President or at the written request of any five (5) members of the Board. A roll call shall be taken at the commencement of each meeting and a quorum established. When voting on any action or motion, should a voice vote not be clearly unanimous, members of the board shall be poled individually by the Secretary, with the recording of the count of the vote in the official minutes of the meeting. Meetings of the Board of Directors may be conducted in person or by any technological means for the inclusion of some or all board members, and by which all members participating can hear each other at the same time. Such technologies shall include but not be limited to: telephone, computer, or smart phone based conferencing. Appropriate technologies will be determined by an action of the board meeting in person, by a two thirds vote. The procedures of meetings conducted through the use of technologies shall not vary from those employed by the board when meeting in person. When meeting in person the board of directors shall adhere to the organization’s physical accessibility standards.
Revision:
Section 4. Meetings
The Board of Directors shall meet at the time of the State Conference and Convention. It shall hold at least one (1) other regular meeting each year. Special meetings may be held either at the call of the President or at the written request of any five (5) members of the Board. A roll call shall be taken at the commencement of each meeting and a quorum established. When voting on any action or motion, should a voice vote not be clearly unanimous, members of the board shall be poled individually by the Secretary, with the recording of the count of the vote in the official minutes of the meeting. Meetings of the Board of Directors may be conducted in person or by any technological means for the inclusion of some or all board members, and by which all members participating can hear each other at the same time. Such technologies shall include but not be limited to: telephone, computer, or smart phone based conferencing. Appropriate technologies will be determined by an action of the board meeting in person, by a two thirds vote. The procedures of meetings conducted through the use of technologies shall not vary from those employed by the board when meeting in person. When meeting in person the board of directors shall adhere to the organization’s physical accessibility standards.

Explanation:
This section refers to the entire event as a Conference and Convention instead of Convention.

Article VI: Powers and Duties of the Board of Directors
Original:
Section 5. The State Convention
The time and place of an upcoming Convention of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind shall be recommended by the Convention Site Committee when this committee makes its report at an annual convention. A majority vote of the members present and voting shall then determine the date and place of the next Convention. Notice of the Convention shall be published in any official publication of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind or in a special bulletin to members. Such notice shall be given to the members at least thirty (30) days prior to the Convention. The Convention site shall adhere to the physical accessibility standards of the organization.

Revision:
Section 5. The State Conference and Convention
The time and place of an upcoming Conference and Convention of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind shall be recommended by the Conference and Convention Site Committee when this committee makes its report at an annual convention. A majority vote of the members present and voting shall then determine the date and place of the next Conference and Convention. Notice of the Conference and Convention shall be published in any official publication of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind or in a special bulletin to members. Such notice shall be given to the members at least thirty (30) days prior to the Conference and Convention. The Conference and Convention site shall adhere to the physical accessibility standards of the organization.

Explanation:
This section also adopts the name change Conference and Convention rather than Convention.

Article VII: Powers and Duties of the Convention

Original:
Section 2. Voting
Official delegates shall be authorized to vote on behalf of chapters and special interest affiliates at annual conventions of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind. Each Chapter and each special interest affiliate shall be represented by two (2) delegates. In addition, each member of a chapter or special interest affiliate who is present at the Convention is entitled to one (1) vote, provided he/she has paid membership dues in accordance with these Bylaws on record with the PCB Office for a minimum of thirty (30) days. This popular vote count shall be added to the delegate vote count and shall constitute the total vote for or against any issue. Any business brought before the Convention shall be decided by a majority vote except as otherwise stated in these Bylaws.

Revision:
Section 2. Voting
Official delegates shall be authorized to vote on behalf of chapters and special interest affiliates at annual conventions of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind. Each Chapter and each special interest affiliate shall be represented by two (2) delegates. In addition, each registered member of the organization who is present at the Convention is entitled to one (1) vote, provided he/she is a registered member of the Pennsylvania Counsel of the Blind at the time he/she registered for the annual Conference and Convention. This popular vote count shall be added to the delegate vote count and shall constitute the total vote for or against any issue. Any business brought before the Convention shall be decided by a majority vote except as otherwise stated in these Bylaws.
Explanation:
This section also adopts the word change. It also refers to registered members and states that a person can vote only if they are a registered member of PCB at the time they registered for the Conference and Convention.

Article VII: Powers and Duties of the Convention
Original:
Section 3. Elections
Regular election of officers and Directors shall occur during the annual convention. Officers shall be elected in odd-numbered years for a term of office of two (2) years. Four (4) Directors shall be elected each year to serve a term of two (2) years. The term of office for both officers and Directors shall begin January 1 following their election. No director and no officer other than the Secretary and the Treasurer shall serve for more than two (2) full consecutive terms in the same office.
If a vacancy should occur on the Board of Directors (the offices of President, 1st Vice President and 2nd Vice President excepted), the Board may elect by majority vote of its members present and voting an individual to fill the vacated position until the next annual election. At that time, if necessary, the membership shall elect a successor to serve for the remainder of the term. If the vacated office is that of President or 1st Vice President, then the 1st Vice President and/or the 2nd Vice President shall succeed to the next higher office and shall serve for the remainder of the term.
Upon completion of the election of officers and members of the board, all those elected shall be sworn in to their position by affirming through a Pledge of Obligation to be administered by the organization’s past President. If the past President is unavailable, the pledge shall be administered by the highest-ranking officer or most senior member of the Board who has not stood for election during the current cycle. Wording of the Pledge shall be determined by the Board of Directors and may be changed or updated accordingly.

Revision:
Section 3. Elections
Regular election of officers and directors shall occur during the annual convention. Officers shall be elected in odd-numbered years for a term of office of two (2) years. Four (4) Directors shall be elected each year to serve a term of two (2) years. The term of office for both officers and directors shall begin January 1 following their election. No Director and no officer other than the Secretary and the Treasurer shall serve for more than two (2) full consecutive terms in the same office.
If a vacancy should occur on the Board of Directors (the offices of President and 1st Vice President excepted), the Board may elect by majority vote of its members present and voting an individual to fill the vacated position until the next annual election. At that time, if necessary, the membership shall elect a successor to serve for the remainder of the term. If the vacated office is that of President or 1st Vice President, then the 1st Vice President and/or the 2nd Vice President shall succeed to the next higher office and shall serve for the remainder of the term.
Upon completion of the election of officers and members of the board, all those elected shall be sworn in to their position by affirming through a Pledge of Obligation to be administered by the organization’s past President. If the past President is unavailable, the pledge shall be administered by the highest ranking officer or most senior member of the Board who has not stood for election during the current cycle. Wording of the Pledge shall be determined by the Board of Directors and may be changed or updated accordingly.
Explanation:
The only change is to remove the second Vice President from the list because no officer below the Second Vice President can automatically succeed to that office.

Article VIII: Duties of Officers
Original:
Section 5. Treasurer
The Treasurer shall:
1. Oversee the fiscal components of the operation of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind.
2. Make all financial disbursements by check signed by him/her and co-signed by the President or his/her designee.
3. The treasurer or his/her designee shall maintain a roster containing the names, addresses and dues status of all members of the organization.
4. Provide a financial report at each meeting of the board.
The Treasurer of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind shall be bonded in an amount prescribed by the Board of Directors.

Revision:
Section 5. Treasurer
The Treasurer shall:

  1. Oversee the fiscal components of the operation of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind.
  2. Make all financial disbursements by check signed by him/her and co-signed by the President or his/her designee.
  3. The treasurer or his/her designee shall maintain a roster containing the names, addresses and membership status of all members of the organization.
  4. Provide a financial report at each meeting of the board.
    The Treasurer of the Pennsylvania Council of the Blind shall be bonded in an amount prescribed by the Board of Directors.
    Explanation:
    This section tracks the change if dues are eliminated. In this case the Treasurer would keep a record of registered members.

Article IX: Chapters and Affiliates
Original:
Section 3. Chapters in Good Standing
1. Maintain a membership of at least eight (8), the majority of whom must be blind or visually impaired, unless otherwise determined by the board of directors; shall submit to the PCB office chapter membership’s appropriate membership dues.
2. Hold all organization functions in adherence of PCB’s physical accessibility standards.

Revision:
Section 3. Chapters in Good Standing
1. Maintain a membership of at least eight (8), the majority of whom must be blind or visually impaired, unless otherwise determined by the board of directors; shall submit to the PCB office the registration information for all new members.
2. Hold all organization functions in adherence of PCB’s physical accessibility standards.
Explanation:
This section tracks the change if dues are eliminated. In this case the Chapter would submit the registration forms of members to the PCB office.

Article IX: Chapters and Affiliates
Original:
Section 4. Special Interest Affiliates in Good Standing
1. Maintain a membership of at least ten (10), the majority of whom must be blind or visually impaired, unless otherwise determined by the board of directors; shall submit to the PCB office the special interest affiliate appropriate dues.

  1. Hold all organization functions in adherence of PCB’s physical accessibility standards.

Revision:
Section 4. Special Interest Affiliates in Good Standing
1. Maintain a membership of at least ten (10), the majority of whom must be blind or visually impaired, unless otherwise determined by the board of directors; shall submit to the PCB office the registration information for all new members.
2. Hold all organization functions in adherence of PCB’s physical accessibility standards.

Explanation:
This section tracks the change if dues are eliminated. In this case the Special Interest Affiliate would submit the registration forms of members to the PCB office.
This concludes the proposed amendments.

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