Bylaws

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 PORTAGE COUNTY RETIRED TEACHERS ASSOCIATION

Revised November, 2013

Article I:  NAME AND PURPOSE

A.  The name of this organization shall be Portage County Retired Teachers Association, hereafter referred to as PCRTA.
B.  The purposes of the organization shall be:
1.  To function as a cooperative and active chapter of the Ohio Retired Teachers Association and to cooperate with the Retired Teacher Division of AARP and other organizations having similar purposes and aims. 
2.  To help promote the interests and welfare of its members.
3.  To help retired teachers maintain identity with the teaching profession and further the cause of education.
4.  To provide opportunities for retired teachers to have meaningful contact with friends and associates of the active teaching years.
5.  To gather and disseminate information of value to members.
6.  To provide an organization framework through which retired educators can continue a life of service to the community, fellow members, and their active colleagues.
7.  To present the image of aging as one of dignity, independence, and purpose.
8.  To encourage active educators to prepare for retirement.
9.  To familiarize retired and active teachers with the benefits of membership in the local, state, and national associations.
10. To recognize scholarships awarded by Portage County Retired Teachers Scholarship.
ARTICLE II:  GOVERNANCE
A.  The Portage County RTA shall be governed by its own officially adopted bylaws.  These bylaws shall in no way conflict with the Constitution and Bylaws of the Ohio RTA.
ARTICLE III:  MEMBERSHIP
A.  ACTIVE MEMBERSHIP:  Membership is open to any teacher or administrator retired from the public schools, state and municipal colleges and universities of Ohio; any teacher or administrator retired in any other state but living in Ohio; any spouse who becomes a benefit recipient of State Teachers Retirement System (STRS); and any person in Ohio interested in education and the issues of retirees.
B.  DUAL MEMBERSHIP:  Only dual membership in ORTA and PCRTA will be available.  Current Associate Memberships will be grandfathered.
C.  LIFE MEMBERSHIP:  Any person of our membership or a retiree considering membership may choose Life Membership.  The principle of the invested funds shall not be used other than to bring earnings to PCRTA.  These earnings may be used by PCRTA for current expenses.
D.  HONORARY MEMBERSHIP:  A long-time member may be considered for honorary status if found in need by personal circumstances.  Nomination may be by family or a PCRTA member.  Membership is subject to approval by the Officers.
ARTICLE IV:  OFFICERS
A. The elected officers of PCRTA shall be President, Vice President, Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary, Treasurer, and Assistant Treasurer.
B.  Duties of the Officers
1.The President shall:
a.  Preside at all general meetings and at Officers meetings and call meetings as needed.
b.  Appoint chairpersons of standing and special committees.
c.  Serve as ex-oficio member of all committees except the Nominating Committee.
2.  The Vice President shall:
a.  Work with the President and substitute for him/her when necessary.
b.  Plan the programs and make all luncheon arrangements for the year in coordination with the  Executive Board.
c.  Perform such other duties as assigned by the President.
3.  The Recording Secretary shall:
a.  Record and keep a permanent file of the minutes of all general meetings and of the Officers meetings.
b.  Have available for reference at all meetings, a copy of the Association Bylaws and a list of officers and committees.
4.  The Corresponding Secretary shall:
a.  Have charge of such communication as delegated by the President and/or the Officers.
b.  Keep on file all incoming and outgoing communications.5.  The Treasurer shall:
a.  Receive and disburse all funds of PCRTA.
b.  Pay all bills provided for in the budget or confirmed by the President.
c.  Oversee administration of PCRTA Scholarship funding.
d. Be responsible for keeping a proper set of books.
e.  Be responsible for rendering a financial report for each newsletter and at Executive Board meetings.
f.  Serve on the Budget Committee.
g.  Present books for annual audit.
h.  Collect dues of all current members and forward members’ state dues to the ORTA office.
i.  Notify Ohio RTA of the death of a member.
j.  Make arrangements for the required tax forms to be filed.
k.  Arrange bonding of the Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer.
6.  The Assistant Treasurer shall:
a. Serve as the custodian of PCRTA Scholarship funding.
b.  Assist the Treasurer in the performance of his/her duties and function inhis/her place in case of absence from a meeting.
c  Perform other duties as prescribed by the Treasurer
ARTICLE  V:  OFFICERS/EXECUTIVE BOARD
A.  The Officers shall consist of the six (6) elected officers, the immediate Past President.  The Officers and the Committee Chairs shall be members of the Executive Board.
B.  The Officers shall act for emergency or special needs.
C.  The Executive Board shall transact business for PCRTA between stated meetings, subject to review at the following regular meeting.
D.  The Executive Board shall meet at the call of the President or on request of any three (3) members of the board.
E.  A majority of the membership at the Executive Board shall constitute a quorum.
ARTICLE VI:  ELECTIONS AND TERMS OF OFFICE
A.  Nominations.  A standing Nominating Committee of three members, appointed by the President, shall work on a year-round basis.  At least one month prior to election, this  committee shall prepare a slate of nominees to be presented at the annual meeting.  This  slate shall be announced in writing to each member at least two weeks before the election. Nominations may be made from the floor provided prior consent of the nominee has been obtained.
 B.  Elections.   Elections shall be held at the annual meeting in November.  Officers shall be elected by a majority vote of those present at the annual meeting.
C.  Term of Office.   All officers shall take office on January
1.  They shall serve for a period of two years with the President, Corresponding Secretary, and Assistant Treasurer being newly elected during the even numbered years, and the Vice President, Recording Secretary, and Treasurer beingnewly elected during the odd numbered years.  They shall be eligible for reelection.
D.  Vacancies.   All vacancies in office shall be filled for the unexpired term by the Officers or by the President with approval of the Officers.
ARTICLE VII:  COMMITTEES
A.Standing Committees should be reviewed by the Officers and the Bylaws Committee each year.
B.Committees are: 
1. Archival  
2. Community Services  
3 .Informative and Protective Services  
4. Legislative  
5. Membership  
6. Memorial and Sunshine  
7. Newsletter
 8 .Nominations  
9. Pre-retirement Plannng
10. Proctoring
11. Public Relations
12. Reservations
13.  Scholarship
14   Social/Travel
15.  Transportation and Communications
C:  Additional Committees:  Special Ad Hoc Committees may be appointed when considered necessary to carry on the work of PCRTA.   Audit Committee, By Laws Committee, and Budget Committee are examples of AdHoc committees.
D.  Duties of Committee Chairpersons
1.  Establish a regular meeting schedule and develop committee objectives.
2.  Complete committee activity reports in a timely fashion.
3.  Serve as channels of communication with their respective areas with the Ohio RTA.
4.  Motivate members to carry out their responsibilities.
5.  Review job descriptions and goals in the ORTA Handbook and fulfill the duties of the committee.
6.  Maintain a listing of activities, contacts, duties and responsibilities to assist future committee chairs.
ARTICLE VIII:  MEETINGS
A. Six general meetings shall be held each year. Unless otherwise determined by the Executive Board, these meetings shall be luncheon-program meetings held on the third Thursday of March, May, July, September, November, and December.
B.  Special meetings may be called by the President or by any three Officers at any time such a meeting is deemed advisable.
C.  The annual meeting shall be held in November and shall be for the purpose of electing officers, receiving reports of officers and committees, and for such other business as may properly arise.
D.  Quorum.   At least twenty (20) voting members must be present to constitute a quorum.
ARTICLE IX:  DUES
A.  The local chapter dues shall be determined by a recommendation of the Executive Board and a majority vote in favor of the change by members present at any general meeting.
B.  State dues are determined by the Ohio RTA.
ARTICLE X:  AMENDMENTS
A.These 501(c)(4) bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of members present at any stated meeting, provided the proposed amendment has been distributed to all members at least two weeks prior to the meeting at which it is to be voted upon.
B. These bylaws may be amended to accommodate any changes in ORTA bylaws which have a direct effect on these bylaws by a majority vote at a regularly scheduled meeting of the Executive Board.
ARTICLE XI: DISSOLUTION In event of dissolution of the Portage County Retired Teachers Association, the Executive Board shall, after paying and making provisions for the payment of all liabilities, distribute all the assets of the PCRTA over to an organization dedicated to charitable and/or educational purposes that has been recognized as a 501(c)(4) organization by the Internal Revenue Service.  

BYLAWS of the
PORTAGE COUNTY RETIRED TEACHERS ASSOCIATION SCHOLARSHIP
Approved November, 2013

 

Article I:  NAME AND PURPOSE

A.  The name of this organization shall be Portage County Retired Teachers Association Scholarship, hereafter referred to as the PCRTA Scholarship, a 501(c)(3) organization.
B.  The purposes of the PCRTA Scholarship shall be:
1.  To provide scholarships to Portage County graduating seniors who plan to become educators. 2.  To consider grants and awards to Portage County educators.
3.  To raise funds for the PCRTA Scholarship through requests from individuals, estates, corporations, and foundations
ARTICLE II:  GOVERNANCE The Portage County Retired Teachers Association Scholarship shall be governed by its own officially adopted bylaws.  These bylaws shall in no way conflict with the Bylaws of the Portage County Retired Teachers Association, a 501(c)(4) organization.
ARTICLE III: MEMBERSHIP All members of the Executive Board of the Portage County Retired Teachers Association shall be members of this PCRTA Scholarship.
ARTICLE IV: OFFICERS
A.  The Officers of the PCRTA Scholarship shall be the Officers of the Portage County Retired Teachers Association, namely the President, Vice President, Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, Past President and ORTA Trustee. 
B.  Duties of the Officers             
1.  The President shall preside at all meetings              
2.  The Vice President shall substitute for the president when necessary.               
3.  The Recording Secretary shall record and keep a permanent file of the minutes of all meetings.              
4.  The Corresponding Secretary shall have charge of communications.               
5.  The Treasurer shall oversee the administration of funds.               
6.  The Assistant Treasurer shall receive and disburse all funds of the PCRTA Scholarship.
ARTICLE V:  ELECTIONS AND TERMS OF OFFICE
A.  Elections.   Officers shall be elected at the Portage County Retired Teachers Association annual meeting in November.
B.  Term of Office.   All officers’ terms shall be the same as the Portage County Retired Teachers Association officer terms.
C.  Vacancies.   All vacancies in office shall be filled for the unexpired term by the Portage County Retired Teachers Association Officers or by the President with approval of the Officers.
ARTICLE VI:  COMMITTEES
A. Selection Committee.  The PCRTA Scholarship Committee chair shall be the chair of the Selection Committee.
B  Finance Committee.  The Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer shall comprise the Finance Committee.
ARTICLE VII:  SCHOLARSHIPS
A. The Portage County Retired Teachers Association Scholarship may award one or more scholarships to Portage County graduating seniors who plan to enter the field of education.
B. An applicant must be a resident of Portage County or a graduating senior from a school in Portage County.
C.  The PCRTA Executive Board will approve the criteria for awarding scholarships based on recommendations from the Scholarship Committee.
D.  Recipients and two chaperones each will be honored as our guests at a PCRTA luncheon meeting.
E.  Fundraising projects may be sponsored.
F.  A scholarship will be named for a donor, deceased member, corporation, or foundation when the donations equal at least the amount of a full scholarship.
G.  A collective memorial scholarship may be named for deceased members when the donations are less than the amount of a full scholarship.
H.  The Officers may approve additional types of scholarships such as college students, graduate studies, or grants.
ARTICLE VIII:  AMENDMENTS A. These bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of members present at any stated meeting, provided the proposed amendment has been distributed to all members at least two weeks prior to the meeting at which it is to be voted upon. B. These bylaws may be amended to accommodate any changes in Portage County Retired Teachers Association bylaws which have a direct effect on these bylaws by a majority vote at a regularly scheduled meeting of the Executive Board.
ARTICLE IX:  DISSOLUTION In event of dissolution of the Portage County Retired Teachers Association Scholarship, the Officers shall, after paying and making provisions for the payment of all liabilities, distribute all the assets of the Portage County Retired Teachers Association Scholarship over to an organization dedicated to charitable and/or educational purposes and that is recognized as a 501(c)3 organization by the Internal Revenue Service.

 

 “I’m here from the IRS… and I’m here to help you!” – A true Story
Yeah, really? You’re kidding. No kidding. The IRS was called on to help PCRTA. And they were very helpful!The PCRTA Board decided to apply for a 501(c)3 designation from the Internal Revenue Service. With this designation, PCRTA would avoid costly taxes on our income and contributors to our scholarship fund could claim their donations on their Federal income tax returns. 
Treasurer Darlene Fetterhoff and CPA Alan Balog spent many grueling hours completing the application. Have you ever seen an easy-to-use IRS application? After a year of waiting for our application to be processed, we heard from a very thorough and understanding IRS agent. She reviewed our bylaws, minutes of several meetings, newsletters, and our website as a part of the approval process. She commended our commitment to community service and acknowledged our significant scholarship program. She cited our legislative/political activities.  
The problem? An organization with a 501(c)3 designation cannot participate in legislative activities, especially grassroots lobbying. Informing our members of pending legislative and urging our elected officials to take action directed by our legislative committee are important activities. The 501(c)4 designation would permit legislative activities, but contributors could not deduct their donations to PCRTA.
The solution? The helpful IRS agent suggested PCRTA apply for a 501(c)4 designation which would make us a tax-exempt organization allowing us to participate in legislative activities. She suggested we also form a second organization with the sole purpose of managing our scholarship donations and awards and apply for a 501(c)3 designation for that organization.
She guided Darlene and Alan through the exhausting process. They spent an enormous amount of time with the applications, and we are truly grateful. The result? After the final approval, PCRTA will have a 501(c)4 designation which will allow us to be a tax exempt organization permitted to take part in political activities. We will have another organization, Portage County Retired Teachers Association Scholarship, to operate the scholarship program; and contributors may claim their donations when they file Federal income taxes. The revisions in the PCRTA bylaws and the new set of bylaws will accomplish this new arrangement