By Michael Cass, Director-elect, Northern Section, February 19, 2022
What are bylaws, and why are they important?
A bylaw is a rule or law established by an organization or community to regulate itself. APA California – Northern Section is governed by bylaws, which must be consistent with the policies and procedures in the California Chapter Bylaws.
The Section Bylaws are adopted by our Section Board of Directors. They set forth the duties of elected and appointed board members and important procedures related to decision-making and voting. Bylaws help to ensure that, even as officers and directors come and go, we maintain a consistent process and procedures.
Our current bylaws were adopted in 2013. Recognizing they were in need of a comprehensive update to address legal issues and procedural changes, a committee comprising James Castañeda, AICP; Jonathan Schuppert, AICP; Stephen Velyvis, Florentina Craciun, Greg Holisko, AICP; and Michael Cass, began more than two years ago to draft revisions. The final draft proposes a number of changes, including:
- Specifying the requirements for independent contractors, interns, and speakers;
- Updating committees and their responsibilities;
- Updating Board positions and duties;
- Clarifying the requirements to run for an elected position;
- Updating the voting and election procedures and schedule;
- Adding an uncontested election process (elected by acclamation);
- Clarifying what constitutes a quorum;
- Updating financial policies;
- Correcting minor inconsistencies and errors; and
- Addressing other minor legal updates.
The proposed Bylaws can be read or downloaded here. If you have any recommendations for revisions, please notify Director-Elect Michael Cass by March 8, 2022. The Section Board of Directors is tentatively scheduled to consider the proposed bylaws for adoption at their regular Board meeting on March 17, 2022.