INDIA ASSOCIATION OF PHEONIXBY LAWS & CONSTITUTIONPREAMBLEWe, the people of Arizona with our ancestry in the Indian sub-continent and our friends here in the U.S.A. do hereby resolve to give ourselves a revised Constitution with a view to function effectively by representing all segments of our society in this great country of the United States of America which we are trying to make our homeland by upholding the highest democratic ideals and traditions embodied in the body politic of India and U.S.A.DEFINITION:“Indians” include a U.S. Citizen, Resident, Non-Resident Aliens, and Students in the United States of America who have their “origins in India” by birth, marriage, or ancestry. “Sister Organizations” hall include any cultural or student organizations located in Arizona with its “origins in India”.ARTICLE I: THE NAMEThe name of the organization shall be “ INDIA ASSOCIATION” herein after referred to as ASSOCIATION .ARTICLE II: AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
- To encourage ‘Indians’ to fully participate in the American society.
- To encourage other non-profit ‘Sister Organizations’ to flower and prosper.
- To encourage ‘Sister Organizations’ to communicate with each other and with the ASSOCIATION in marching hand in hand to achieve the common objectives.
- To provide a national voice to ‘Indians’ by cooperating with other organizations with similar objectives.
- To provide a forum for exchange of ideas, issues, and common concerns to the ‘Indians’.
- To ensure and protect the rights of ‘Indians’.
- To assist in the orientation and adaptation of ‘Indians’ to the American environment and bring about a better understanding of America and other Americans.
- To formulate guidelines for improving the collective image of ‘Indians’.
- To assure due recognition for the contributions of ‘Indians’.
- To help establish and promote a community center in the Phoenix metropolis.ARTICLE III: MEMBERMembership to the ASSOCIATION shall be open to all irrespective of color, creed, nationality, or sex who are desirous of furthering the objectives of the ASSOCIATION.Membership shall remain in effect unless disapproved by the BOARD OF DIRECTORS, as long as the member remains in good standing, having paid all the current dues as set out in the GUIDELINES, and abides by the Constitution.Membership consists of two types: General Membership and ‘Sister Organization’ Membership. General Membership consists of: PATRON, LIFE, ANNUAL AND STUDENT.I. A PATRON MEMBER** is an institution or a corporation who makes the appropriate donation as set out in the GUIDELINES.II. A LIFE MEMBER* is an individual or family who makes the appropriate donation as set out in the GUIDELINES.III. ANNUAL MEMBER* is an individual and spouse (if married).IV. STUDENT MEMBER* is an individual who is a full time student and spouse (if married).V. SISTER ORGANIZATION MEMBER** is a non-profit organization, non-registered or registered with the Arizona Corporation Commission, and controlled by elected office bearers subject to the approval of Board of Directors.ARTICLE IV: THE BOARD OF DIRECTORSPOWERS AND DUTIES OF THE BOARDThe affairs of the ASSOCIATION shall be conducted by a Board of Directors, herein after called the BOARD. The BOARD shall consist of nine members elected by the general membership and a maximum of six appointed Directors*** selected based on organization membership as given below. The President and the Directors shall serve in an honorary capacity. The BOARD may be assisted as necessary by committees set up for specific purposes with specified terms of reference, as defined in the GUIDELINES. The BOARD shall have the powers from time to time to adopt any rules and regulations being necessary for the benefit and operation of the association; provided such rules and regulations shall not be in conflict with the articles of Incorporation. The BOARD shall be responsible to the Membership.* Members should be at least 18 years or older.** Members representing these organizations must be at least 18 years or older.*** These directors must be members of India AssociationFORMATION OF THE BOARD:The BOARD shall comprise of the following:
- A President elected by the members for a term of one year, at the Annual Meeting.
- Eight Directors elected by the members for a term of two years. However, in the year 1989 a total of eight Directors will be elected out of which only four will be chosen by a lottery scheme for a one year term only.
- A maximum of six Directors selected from other non-profit ‘Sister Organizations and /or ‘Student Organizations’ representing the Mosaic of the Indian sub-continent to fully represent the entire Indian community in Arizona. The selections of the six Directors shall be done by the President and eight elected Directors as per GUIDELINES upon payment of Sister Organizational Membership dues. If any member of the governing board (or executive committee) of these ‘sister organization’ gets himself/herself elected on the BOARD of this ASSOCIATION, then that ‘sister organization’ shall not nominate that individual to the BOARD.A Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer shall be elected for a period of one year from among the eight elected Directors by the President and eight elected Directors.DUTIES OF THE OFFICE BEARERS:THE PRESIDENT:The President provides general leadership and coordination, and presides at MEMBERSHIP and BOARD meetings of the ASSOCIATION, ensures that the BOARD resolutions are carried out and signs official documents. The President is Ex-Officio member of all committees.THE VICE PRESIDENT:The Vice President assists the President and fulfills all functions of the office during the President’s absence. The Vice President will become the acting President, if the post of the President falls vacant due to any reason, until the eight elected directors elect a new President to complete the remaining term of the President.THE SECRETARY:The Secretary of the ASSOCIATION conducts all general correspondence and maintains a list of current membership. The Secretary shall issue notice to all membership and BOARD, and shall record the votes and keeps the minutes of all meeting and proceedings of the BOARD. The Secretary shall carryout such other duties as may, from time to time, be assigned by the BOARD. The Secretary shall also file annual reports with the Secretary of State, Arizona after receiving such a report from the Treasurer.THE TREASURER:The Treasurer shall receive and deposit, in appropriate banking institution(s) as approved by the BOARD, all funds of the ASSOCIATION and shall disburse such funds as directed by resolution of the BOARD; keep proper books of account; cause an annual audit of ASSOCIATION’S books as directed by the BOARD; and shall prepare an annual budget and statement of income and expenditures to be presented to the Membership at its annual meeting; and deliver a copy of each to the members; and shall prepare an annual report and give it to the Secretary who shall file it with the Secretary of State, Arizona before deadlines.ARTICLE V: BANKING AND AUDITINGThe BOARD shall approve the institution(s) in which the account(s) of the ASSOCIATION shall be kept. All accounts shall be kept in the name of the ASSOCIATION. Transactions shall normally be by means of checks. All checks must be signed by two of the following three officers, viz: the President, the Secretary, and the Treasurer. These individuals shall have authority to approve expenditures of up to two hundred and fifty dollars as required for the furtherance of the objectives of the ASSOCIATION.A separate account shall be maintained for the building fund. The money donated by the donors and members for this specific cause shall be kept in this account. The money in this account shall not be used for any other purpose.AUDIT OF ACCOUNTS:The Auditor(s) shall be approved by the BOARD (no auditor shall be a member of the BOARD). The auditor(s) shall audit and certify all accounts for the ASSOCIATION, including the annual statement of income and expenditure.ARTICLE VI: RULES OF PROCEDUREAll meetings shall be conducted in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order. Membership meetings may adopt such rules of procedure, not inconsistent with these articled, as required for the proper conduct of their business. Without prejudice to the general provisions set out above, the President may (unless the membership decides otherwise) restrict the discussion on a motion to two interventions by any one member, each intervention being limited to two minute duration. Any issue raised and supported by a simple majority of members attending a annual/special meeting shall form part of the agenda of the annual/special meeting.ELECTION PROCEDURE:Detailed procedures for the appointment of the Nomination Committee, date of election, publication of ballot papers, with respect to election of the BOARD shall be contained in the GUIDELINES.ARTICLE VII: AMENDMENTSThis constitution may be amended by a 2/3 majority of the membership attending the meeting with a 51% of the annual membership forming the quorum. If less than a quorum is present, the affirmative must be such as would constitute a majority if a quorum were present. The Secretary shall issue in accordance with the GUIDELINES, text of the notice indicating the article(s) proposed for amendment and the proposed amendments. GUIDELINES can however be amended by a simple majority of membership. Proposal for amendments may originate from the BOARD or by means of a written request from at least 10% of the membership, or by a simple majority of the members attending a general body meeting. In the event of an amendment request, arising out of the general body, the BOARD shall call a special meeting within three months to consider the amendment(s). The GUIDELINES complement the constitution of the ASSOCIATION. In case, wherethere are conflicts between the GUIDELINES and the Constitution, the Constitution shall prevail.ARTICLE VIII: DISSOLUTIONProposal for the dissolution of the ASSOCIATION shall originate only by means of a written request addressed to the Secretary signed by a simple majority of the membership. The Secretary shall then convene a meeting to discuss the dissolution of the ASSOCIATION within three months after the receipt of the written request. The dissolution requires approval by a 51% majority of the membership (with a quorum of at least 51% at the meeting).For the purpose of dissolution, the assets of the ASSOCIATION shall be distributed as determined by the membership.ARTICLE IX: TENURE IN OFFICETo be eligible as a candidate for the President, the person shall have been a member of the ASSOCIATION for a full year immediately preceding the election. No person shall be eligible to serve more than two years as President in a lifetime. This rule applies retroactively, to all past Presidents of the ASSOCIATION. In order to be nominated for election as a Director, a person shall be a member of the ASSOCIATION. No person shall serve more than four years as a Director in a lifetime. This applies to all past Executive Committee Members of the ASSOCIATION. The term of each Board of Directors shall start from January 1 and will last till December 31st of that year. The term of the first BOARD, however, shall start on June 18, 1989 and will end on December 31, 1990. This shall be treated as a one year term for both President’s and Board of Directors’ tenure.GUIDELINES OF INDIA ASSOCIATION
- The GUIDELINES can be amended at any time by a simple majority of those members present with a 25% of annual membership forming the required quorum.
The members of the ASSOCIATION shall pay the following dues:a. PATRON makes a minimum of a one – time donation of $500 or more to the ASSOCIATION or as set by the BOARD.b. LIFE MEMBER makes a one – time donation of $200 or more to the ASSOCIATION or as set by the BOARD.c. ANNUAL MEMBER pays an annual membership fee of $15, or as set by the BOARD.d. ORGANIZATION MEMBER pays annually a sum of $1, or as set by the BOARD.e. STUDENT MEMBER annual dues are $2, or as set by the BOARD.
- LIFE MEMBER shall be entitled to life membership for himself/herself and his/her spouse.
- PATRON shall designate a maximum of two individuals to represent at any membership meetings.
- The ASSOCIATION shall hold Annual Membership meetings at least once every calendar year.
- SPECIAL MEMBERSHIP Meetings may be convened by (a) the BOARD on its own initiative; or (b) within three months of the receipt by the Secretary of a request for such a meeting signed by at least 10% of the membership. The three months maximum period may be waived, subject to the agreement of all persons signing the request.
- The Secretary of the ASSOCIATION shall issue notice to all the members, at least two weeks in advance, of any ANNUAL, or SPECIAL MEMBERSHIP meetings. To be eligible to vote in a Annual/Special membership meeting, membership dues should have been received by the ASSOCIATION at least one week before the meeting date. In the absence of the Secretary, the President shall perform this task.
- The following items shall be included in the AGENDA of the ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP Meeting:
a. President’s report.b. Discussion and approval of the Treasurer’s and Auditor’s reports.c. Election of the President and the Board of Directors
- The AGENDA for a SPECIAL MEMBERSHIP meeting shall consists mainly of those items mentioned in the notice (see Section 6 of GUIDELINES).
- The QOURUM at the Annual Meeting shall be 10% of the annual membership for conducting routine activities.
- Each member of the ASSOCIATION who is present shall be entitled to one vote at all meetings.
- The following motions, in order to be carried, shall require a quorum of 51% of the Annual Membership and two-thirds majority of those present. If less than quorum is present the affirmative vote must be such as would constitute a majority if a quorum were present.
a. Removal of a Director from office.b. Expulsion of a member from the ASSOCIATION.
- The membership year of the ASSOCIATION shall be from the 1st of January to the 31st of December.
- A Candidate for the Director shall be nominated by any member of the ASSOCIATION and seconded by another member. Nominations may be sent to the Secretary prior to the meeting in writing. Nomination may also be made from the floor. Additionally, the BOARD may also create a nominating committee for the selection of these candidates. This committee shall consist of a Chairman who shall be a member of the BOARD and two or more members of the ASSOCIATION who are not on the BOARD. No nomination is valid unless the nominee is present at the time of the election or has provided verifiable proof of acceptance of the nomination in writing. In case of contest, the election of the BOARD shall be by secret written ballot conducted by the election committee specified in the GUIDELINE 14. The six nominated directors from the ‘Sister Organizations’ shall be chosen from six ‘Sister Organizations’ at the discretion of the BOARD to fully represent the entire Indian Community. One of the six Directors shall be from a ASU student association with a membership of 25 students or more, if such an association exists.
- The BOARD of Directors shall appoint a 3-member election committee to Conduct the elections. None of these shall be a BOARD member.
- A vacancy arising through a Director ceasing to hold office shall be filled by the BOARD for the remainder of the year till the next election. The BOARD may not have more than two co-opted members at any one time. Members elected in the By-Election shall hold office for the remainder of the term.
- A Director may be removed from office in accordance with the provisions of GUIDELAW 11. A Director, so removed shall be replaced in accordance with GUIDELAW 15.
- The meeting of the BOARD of Directors shall be called by the President, at least twice a year. Simple majority of the BOARD shall constitute a quorum. The President shall also call a meeting of the BOARD of Directors if required in writing by at least three Directors. A simple majority of the BOARD will prevail when there is a difference of opinion amongst the board members on any day to day issues that are not covered elsewhere in this Constitution.
- The BOARD may establish, in order to deal with specific questions, such committees or working groups as deemed necessary. In establishing such bodies, the BOARD shall define their terms of reference. The Chairpersons and members of such groups need not all be Directors. However, each such body shall include at least one Director.
- All contracts with other organizations and individuals shall be in writing and must have the prior approval of the BOARD of Directors. Contracts shall be signed by any two of the three officers, the President, Secretary and the Treasurer.
- The outgoing BOARD shall hand over all documents and inventories to the newly elected BOARD at a joint meeting of the two BOARDS.
- The ANNUAL meeting shall be normally called in the month of November of each year except for the calendar year 1989. In 1989, the ANNUAL meeting on June 18 will instead replace the one in November of 1989.