MERTON PARK WARD RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION CONSTITUTION (5th May 1992) (Clause 8.1 amended 2nd July 2019)
The name of the Association shall be “The Merton Park Ward Residents Association”
The objectives of the Association shall be to represent the residents of the Merton Park Ward on appropriate matters of community concern, and to endeavour on their behalf to maintain and improve the amenities and environment of the area.
3.0 The means of achieving the objectives of the Association shall be:
3.1 Active involvement in local government by liaison with council representatives;
3.2 By publication of a newsletter (“Forum”) to keep residents informed as to the Association’s activities. Publication to be quarterly or more frequently if deemed necessary;
3.3 Co-operation with such organisations as the Management Committee shall consider helpful to the interests of the Association’s members;
3.4 By the sponsoring of Merton Park Ward council representatives to represent the interests of the Ward’s residents by sitting as independent councillors and not be answerable to any political party;
3.5 Any other means that the Management Committee consider appropriate, but without affiliation to any political party.
4.0 Membership and subscriptions
4.1 Membership shall be open to all residents in the Merton Park Ward paying an annual subscription at a rate agreed at the Annual General Meeting or other general meeting. Life Members shall be members from whom the Management Committee shall decide to accept one payment compounding thereby all future subscriptions. The minimum age to qualify for membership shall be 18 years;
4.2 A member may resign by notice in writing to the Secretary but shall not be entitled to a refund of his or her subscription. A member objecting to an increase in the annual subscription may resign within one month of its announcement without being liable therefor. The Management Committee may remove from membership any member whose annual subscription is in arrears for more than three months after demand;
4.3 Residents joining the Association between 1st October and 31st December in any year shall thereupon pay an annual subscription at the rate for the current year and they shall then be deemed to have paid their subscriptions for both the remainder of that year and for the next following year.
4.4 Each paid-up member has the right to cast an individual vote on each proposal or resolution at any general meeting.
4.5 Affiliate Membership shall be open to those constituted societies and associations representing residents of the Merton Park Ward accepted by the Management Committee to have objectives compatible with those of the MPWRA. Affiliate Members shall pay an annual Affiliate Subscription related to their representation and current MPWRA membership subscription as individually determined by the Management Committee and subject to annual review. An Affiliate Member may nominate a number of representatives, not exceeding 5 as determined by the Management Committee, each of whom shall have the right to cast one vote in person at any general meeting. An Affiliate Member may propose not more than one of their members as a MPWRA Committee Member, such nomination and election to be in accordance with the MPWRA Constitution. Affiliate members shall not be eligible for nomination as sponsored councillors.
4.6 Corporate membership shall be open to those institutions and businesses situated within the Merton Park Ward accepted by the Management Committee as being interested in furthering the objectives of the Association. Corporate Members shall pay an annual Corporate Subscription at a rate agreed at the AGM or other general meeting. A Corporate Member shall nominate a representative who shall have the right to cast one vote at any general meeting but shall not be eligible for nomination as a Committee Member or sponsored councillor.
5.0 Officers and Committee
5.1 There shall be a Management Committee and Executive Officers elected at each Annual General Meeting or other general meeting to conduct the business of the Association on behalf of the members;
5.2 The Executive Officers shall be a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer. The Executive Officers shall be ex-officio members of the Management Committee and shall hold office for the period until the following Annual General Meeting and shall be eligible for re-election as Executive Officers;
5.3 The Management Committee shall consist of up to twelve ordinary members plus any Affiliate Members excluding the Executive Officers and sponsored councillors / adopted council candidates (who shall be considered as ex-officio members of the Management Committee);
5.4 The Management Committee shall have the power to fill any vacancy within the Management Committee including Executive Officers which may arise during the year or appoint additional members to the Management Committee and any such appointments shall be subject to ratification at the following Annual General Meeting or other general meeting. Members so appointed shall be entitled to vote at any Management Committee meeting;
5.5 Half the number of Management Committee members with a minimum of six (of which two must be Executive Officers) shall form a quorum for a Management Committee meeting with not less than two-thirds of those Management Committee members present and voting required for the adoption of resolutions;
5.6 Management Committee meetings shall be held monthly or more or less frequently if deemed necessary and be open to all members. At least seven days notice of such meetings shall be given to all Management Committee members except in case of emergency;
5.7 All meetings shall be presided over by the Chairman or in his absence the Vice-Chairman. In the event that both are absent the Management Committee shall appoint a temporary chairman;
5.8 The Treasurer shall keep a record of all financial transactions, present an audited account at the Annual General Meeting and ensure that Association funds are solely employed on the authority of the Management Committee. The accounts shall be available for inspection at all times. The Association shall hold a bank account in the name of “The Merton Park Ward Residents’ Association”. Cheques shall be signed by not less than two signatories; who shall be the Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer. The Association may raise funds from sources other than subscriptions such as donations, social events and newsletter advertising. The Association’s funds shall only be invested in ways authorised by the Management Committee;
5.9 In conjunction with the Management Committee the secretary shall undertake the following:
- to compile and distribute agendas for all Association meetings;
- to maintain and distribute a record of all business conducted at all Association
- to communicate announcements authorised by the Association to the public media or any public authority in the absence of a Press Officer appointed by the Association;
5.10 Association sponsored councillors shall provide the Management Committee with full reports as to their activities in council when attending Management Committee meetings. The Secretary shall be given a prior report in writing when councillors are unable to attend Management Committee meetings;
5.11 All Management Committee members shall have the right to vote with the exception of the Chairman. In the event of an equal vote, at all meetings the Chairman shall have a casting vote. Voting at all meetings shall be by a show of hands or such other method decided by the chairman of the meeting. Any member unable to attend any meeting may vote on any resolution by prior signed statement to the Secretary.
5.12 The Management Committee shall be solely responsible for the appointment of such non-executive officers as they consider necessary from their own number – this to include the editor of a newsletter (“Forum”). Each non-executive officer shall be responsible for a specific activity. The Chairman shall be required in his report to the Annual General Meeting to specify the non-executive officers appointed in the previous year, together with any proposed changes in the duties and number of such officers to be subsequently appointed for the ensuing period at the first Management Committee meeting following the Annual General Meeting;
5.13 All documents and records used to conduct Association business shall remain the property of the Association. Each out-going Management Committee member shall be required to return any Association records in their keeping to the Secretary within ten days of relinquishing office.
5.14 The Management Committee may constitute sub-committees as necessary composed of Association members with a Management Committee member as Chairman. Such sub-committees shall be subject to the Association’s Constitution and proscribed terms of reference. The proceedings of such sub-committees shall be fully recorded and its decisions may be subject to ratification at a Management Committee meeting. The Chairman of the Management Committee shall decide the quorum requirements for any such sub-committee.
5.15 Management Committee members may in addition hold private Administration Meetings as deemed necessary. Resolutions arising from such meetings shall be subject to ratification at the following Management Committee meeting.
6.0 General Meetings
6.1 An Annual General Meeting shall be held in the second quarter of each calendar year or as soon thereafter as the Management Committee may determine the conduct as following:
- to consider the minutes of the previous Annual General Meeting and any important matters arising;
- to receive and adopt a Chairman’s report;
- to receive and adopt a Treasurer’s report and audited accounts for the previous calendar year and nominate auditors;
- to receive and adopt councillors’ reports
- to receive the resignations of all Executive Officers and Management Committee members elected at the previous Annual General Meeting or other general meeting;
- to elect Executive Officers and appoint a Management committee for the period until the following Annual General Meeting;
- to review membership and subscription rates;
- to consider any other business.
6.2 Nominations of Executive Officers and Management Committee members must be sent in writing to reach the Secretary at least 14 days before the Annual General Meeting or other such general meeting. Such nominations to be proposed and seconded by members other than the nominee. Association sponsored council representatives shall not be eligible for nomination as officers of the Association.
6.3 The Chairman shall call for nominations, which must be seconded by one member present, for Management Committee members from the floor at an Annual General Meeting, or other such general meeting when:
6.3.1 – the number of nominations received prior to the Annual General Meeting is below the maximum number of Executive Officers specified in 5.2 or below the maximum number of Committee members specified in 5.3;
6.3.2 – any nomination when voted upon by those members present is not carried by a majority. (If there is an excess of nominations then exhaustive balloting shall be used);
6.4 Notice shall be given to all members at least 14 days prior to the date decided for the Annual General Meeting;
6.5 Other general meetings may be called as the Management Committee deems necessary or on the request in writing of not fewer than fifteen members. The Secretary shall arrange to convene an extra-ordinary general meeting within forty days of receiving such written request. Notice shall be given to all members of the date decided for, and the purpose of, the meeting at least fourteen days prior to the date decided for the meeting;
6.6 The Constitution may only be amended at a general meeting by not less than two-thirds of those members present and voting. Proposals to amend the Constitution or dissolve the Association must be in writing, signed by not less than fifteen members and forwarded to the Secretary at least twenty-one days prior to a general meeting. Notice of the proposals shall be given to all members at least fourteen days prior to the date decided for the general meeting;
6.7 Fifteen members excluding the Management Committee and Officers shall constitute a quorum for a general meeting;
6.8 Notice of any other major business to be raised at an Annual General Meeting must be given in writing to the Secretary at least fourteen days before the Annual General Meeting;
6.9 Except when specifically stated otherwise in the Constitution all issues voted upon shall be decided by a bare majority of votes cast. The decision of the Chairman of any meeting of the Association as to the result of the voting on any question shall be final.
7.0 Declaration of interest
It shall be the duty of every member who is in anyway directly or indirectly interested financially or professionally in any item discussed at meetings of the Association (including Management Committee meetings) at which he or she may be present to declare such interest and he or she shall not discuss such item (except by invitation of the Chairman) or vote thereon.
8.0 Council Representatives
8.1 Nominations for candidates to become Association sponsored council representatives must be forwarded in writing to reach the Secretary not earlier than six months prior to the expiration of the sitting borough councillors’ term office. Candidates must live or work in the Merton Park Ward, and are required to demonstrate their commitment to the Ward;
8.2 Nominations must be proposed and seconded by members other than the nominee;
8.3 Notice of candidates selected by the Management Committee for the proposed adoption shall be given at least fourteen days prior to the dated decided for an Annual General Meeting or other general meeting;
8.4 The Chairman shall request the approval of the Annual General Meeting or other general meeting of candidates selected for adoption by the Management Committee;
8.5 In the event of non-approval of any proposed candidate, the Chairman shall request approval for an alternative taken from a “List of reserve candidates for proposed adoption” until all candidates are exhausted.
8.6 In the event of a by-election the Management Committee may use an urgency procedure to call an immediate Management Committee meeting to select nominated Council representatives – for which the Constitution’s rules of quorum may be waived if necessary. A special general meeting shall then be held to request the approval of candidates so selected prior to the date for withdrawing nominations – for which the Constitution’s period of notice for general meetings shall not apply.
9.0 Employment of Advisor
The Management Committee shall have power to employ and remunerate any professional advisor notwithstanding that he or she may be a member of the Association. Such professional advisors shall not be entitled to vote at Management Committee meetings.
No member of the Management Committee shall be answerable for any loss, misfortune or damage which may happen in the execution of his or her duties or in relation thereto unless the same shall happen through his or her dishonesty.
In the event of the Merton Park Ward Residents’ Association being dissolved by a two thirds majority of those members present and voting at a general meeting; any properties or monies remaining after its debts and liabilities have been settled shall be paid to such charities as are nominated and approved at a general meeting.
The inadvertent failure to serve a member with any notice required to be given under these Rules shall not invalidate any proceedings in respect of which such notice is given.