The Constitution

FERNDOWN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

Rules of Procedure (Amended December 2015)

That this organisation shall be known as Ferndown Chamber of Commerce.

The object of the Chamber shall be to promote Ferndown as a business community by originating any plans or schemes that might benefit, improve and secure the commercial and general prosperity of the town. To create and foster a spirit of goodwill, friendship and unity amongst the businesspersons of the town.

The membership of chamber shall consist of professional persons, traders, and others having business interests actively engaged in Ferndown or representing a local branch or of a firm partnership or company.

 

a)  The defined area for membership shall be the Towns geographical area including Longham, Stapehill and Ferndown Industrial Estate. It does not include West Moors and West Parley.

 

b)  Companies outside of the said geographical membership area boundary may be allowed to become members if they are seen to bring a benefit to the town, it’s businesses and the Chamber in general and do not directly compete with existing members.

That all persons wishing to become members of the Chamber should forward applications to the Membership Secretary for presentation at the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee shall have the power to refuse an application for membership without assigning a reason. Any members who are engaged in a similar profession or business, or who are interested in any subject of special importance to them may from time to time, with the consent of the Executive Committee, form themselves into a section under a name to be approved by the Executive Committee. No such section shall have power to take any actions or incur any liability in the name of the Chamber or any section without the previous consent of the Executive Committee. Sections must meet once a year. Membership will become active upon the receipt of the annual or proportional membership fee and must be cleared funds.

 

That the Chamber shall have power to elect by ordinary resolution in the Annual General Meeting Honorary Life Members. Honorary Life Membership shall only be conferred as a mark of recognition for outstanding services to the Chamber. Honorary Life Members shall have no voting rights at any meeting of the Chamber or its Executive Committee, nor shall they be required to pay any subscription or other duties as a condition of continued membership. No person who is not an existing or former paid-up member shall be eligible for elections as an Honorary Life Member.

 

Every person or firm desiring Membership of the Chamber shall sign a written application and an agreement to be bound, if elected, by the Rules and Constitution of the Chamber and give the name of the person who will represent the Member at General Meetings. Each application will be placed before a meeting of the Executive Committee of the Chamber and the majority of Executive Members then present may approve the application. The Executive Committee may refuse an application for Membership without assigning a reason.

a) Members shall pay an annual subscription on the first day of April in every year in accordance with such scale of subscriptions determined by the Executive Committee. The Secretary shall keep a register of Members, in conjunction with a Membership secretary, with the names and addresses of nominated representatives. The nominations of representatives may be revoked or altered at any time by the

Person entitled to make them, in writing to the Secretary. No Member, whose subscription is more than three months in arrear, nor his representative, shall be entitled to vote at any meeting.

That the Management of the Chamber shall be vested in an Executive Committee consisting of

President/Chairman Hon. Treasurer

Hon Secretary

Vice President/Chairman Membership Secretary. Administrator

Up to 3 additional Members

Who shall, with the exception of the Administrator, be elected by members of the Chamber at the Annual General Meeting. The Executive Committee shall have the power to co-opt as may be deemed necessary at any given time. The Executive Committee shall have the power to appoint subcommittees and Steering Committees, where necessary. All nominations for officers and membership of the Executive Committee shall be made in writing, signed by one member together with the nominee’s consent to serve, and sent to the Secretary, not later than seven days before the Annual General Meeting.

 

That the Annual General Meeting of members shall be held during the month of November each year and fourteen days notice shall be given. At that meeting the reports of the Hon. Treasurer, Administrator and Auditors shall be submitted. The Chairman, Hon. Treasurer, Hon. Secretary, together with the Auditors and Hon. Solicitor shall be elected to serve for the ensuing year, and all necessary business appertaining to the management and welfare of the Chamber shall be transacted. A General Meeting of members shall be held not less than twice a year. If convenient, one may be called at any other time by the Secretary on the authority of the Executive Committee, or by requisition signed by 10% of the current membership transmitted to the Secretary who, upon receipt of such requisition, shall summon a meeting; and in case of failure or neglect such meeting may be called by ten such members, but at such special meeting no other business than that specified in the notice thereof shall be taken into consideration. The Executive Committee shall meet a minimum of four times a year at regular intervals.

 

TERMINATION OF MEMBERSHIP

(includingexecutivecommitteemembers and the Administrator); The Executive Committee shall have power to suspend or terminate Membership of the Chamber and of any Branch or Trade Section to which that Member is affiliated, and that Member will then be notified of all relevant circumstances and given the opportunity to submit written representation as to why his Membership should not be suspended or terminated. All questions relating to the suspension or termination of Membership shall then be determined by the Executive Committee. The decision of the Executive Committee shall be final and binding.

a) The decision to terminate a membership must be carried out by way of a vote/ballot of the Executive Committee and the Chairman/President to have the casting vote. All reasonable measures must have been completed to settle disputes before termination is voted upon.

That the Chairman, Hon. Treasurer, Hon. Secretary and Administrator shall be an Emergency Committee, with the power to act in cases of urgency, three to form a quorum. That if any member of the Executive Committee shall be absent from the Committee meetings upon three successive occasions, his office or seat may, after due notice having been given to him by the Committee, be declared vacant, and another person’s be appointed in his place, unless such absence is caused by sickness or other circumstances over which he has no control

The business of the Chamber shall be managed by an Executive Committee chosen from Members of the general body of Members and elected at the Annual General Meeting in accordance with these Rules and Constitution, who shall hold office for one year.

a) No person shall be elected or appointed a Member of the Executive Committee who has ceased to be actively engaged in business.

b) The election of Members to the Executive Committee shall be carried out in the following manner:

c) On the Agenda of the Annual General Meeting it shall be requested that nominations for the Committee be delivered to the Secretary seven days before the date of such Meeting.

d) Every Member of the Chamber shall have the right of nominating as many persons for election to the Executive Committee as there are vacancies to fill and such nominations shall be in writing on the official form to be prescribed by the Secretary and shall be signed by two Members and the nominee.

e) A list of all nominations shall be distributed at the Annual General Meeting, and a ballot taken if more nominations are received than there are seats vacant.

f) The Executive Committee shall have power to co-opt to its number from time to time persons whose specialised knowledge may be helpful to the Chamber, but such persons shall have no voting powers

g) At the first meeting after the Annual General Meeting of the Chamber each year the Executive Committee shall elect its Chairman and Vice-Chairman.

h) Five members shall be sufficient to form a quorum of the Executive Committee.

i) The executive Committee shall meet once a month at times considered appropriate by the Executive Committee.

POWERS OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

The Executive Committee shall have power to manage and superintend the affairs of the Chamber and act in the name of the Chamber and generally to execute all powers and functions of the Chamber.

a) Sub-Committees may be appointed from time to time by the Executive Committee. The work and decisions of any such Sub-Committee shall be submitted to and approved by the Executive Committee before taking effect, unless plenary powers to act shall have been specifically given to such Sub- Committee. Minutes shall be kept of all Sub-Committee meetings.

That the Executive Committee shall have power to fill vacancies also to add to its number for special purposes persons whose knowledge experience or public position it may consider to be serviceable to the Chamber. No member is to represent the Chamber officially without the permission of the Executive committee.

That all proposals for payments from the funds of the Chamber shall be considered and dealt with by the Executive Committee. No one shall commit the Chamber without the prior approval of the Executive Committee.

That all questions and requests shall be decided by the vote of a majority of members present voting. In any case of an equality of votes the Chairman shall have a second casting vote. Voting by proxy on any matter is not allowed.

That in any case where any member of the Chamber will not consent to, or does not in fact abide by, the decision of the majority of members of the Chamber, or in any way becomes an undesirable member, he may, upon advice or recommendation of the Executive Committee be excluded from membership by a majority vote of the membership present and voting at such a meeting, and forfeit all interest therein.

That the Hon. Treasurer shall have charge of the funds of the Chamber and shall pay all demands as and when ordered by the Executive Committee. He shall balance his accounts for each audit, and/or whenever required by the Executive Committee and he shall give a report to each Executive Committee meeting. He shall, when required to do so by the Chamber, forthwith render and deliver up all books, monies, documents and properties of or belongings to the Chamber to such person or persons as the Executive Committee may appoint to receive the same.

That the Executive Committee has the power to appoint an Administrator to carry out the duties of the Chamber as decided by the Committee. All monies received by him, due to the Chamber, must be handed to the Treasurer upon receipt, and he shall give the Treasurer all necessary assistance in drawing up a full and complete statement of accounts of the Chamber as and when required to do so. An annual honorarium may be paid to the Administrator as agreed by the Executive Committee, to cover disimbursements etc.

That no rule of the Chamber shall be rescinded altered or any new rule adopted except at the Annual General Meeting, or a special General Meeting convened for that purpose. Fourteen days notice shall be given in writing to the secretary of any proposed alteration. It shall be in the power of the meeting to accept any amendments which shall be relative to the proposed alteration.

That if any matter shall arise which is not provided for in these rules it shall be dealt with by the Executive Committee at its discretion.

MODE OF CONDUCTING THE BUSINESS OF MEETINGS

a) The Secretary, or in his absence such other person at the request of the Chairman for the time being, shall take the minutes of the proceedings of every Meeting,

b) Any resolution passed at one Meeting shall not be substantially altered or revoked at a subsequent one, unless that item is on the agenda for that meeting. (c) Any Member, when he is desirous of proposing any subject for consideration, or to express his opinion on any question, shall address the Chairman and raise his hand.

d) All questions shall be decided by the vote of a majority of Members present. In the event of equality, the Chairman shall have a casting vote. Voting shall be by show of hands except for the election of President, Vice-President, Honorary Treasurer and Executive Committee, which shall be by ballot if necessary. A majority of Members present shall have power to demand that any vote be taken by ballot.

e) At every Meeting of the Executive Committee the Minutes of the last meeting shall be submitted and the Chairman for the time being shall sign a copy of the same.

SPECIAL DONATIONS

When considered necessary by the Executive Committee, donations and subscriptions may be invited for the promotion of specified objects.

REPORTS AND ACCOUNTS

a) The Executive Committee shall cause to be kept such records of account as are necessary to exhibit and explain the transactions and financial position of the Chamber and to give a true and fair view of the state of its affairs.

b) The records of account shall be kept at the offices of the Chamber or at such a place as the Executive Committee shall think fit and shall be open to inspection by the Executive Committee and to the Members of the Chamber at reasonable times during normal business hours.