Bylaws and Standing Rules
The North Dakota Association of the Blind, Inc.
Adopted: June 12, 2011
Last Amended: June 12, 2022
Article I. Mission and Vision Statements
Section 1. The intent of the mission statement is to serve as an abbreviated version of the purposes for which North Dakota Association of the Blind (NDAB) has been established. A complete list of purposes can be found in the NDAB Constitution.
Section 2. The mission of NDAB shall be: We strive to enhance the way of life for people who are blind or visually impaired, to encourage employment opportunities, and to educate the public about sight loss.
Section 3. The intent of the vision statement is to serve as the ultimate goal for which NDAB strives to attain.
Section 4. The vision of NDAB shall be: Persons with vision loss will live a successful, productive life.
Article II. Membership
Section 1. The North Dakota Association of the Blind is a state affiliate of the American Council of the Blind (ACB). Through this affiliation, all members of NDAB are also members of the American Council of the Blind and have all the rights and privileges so conferred by such membership.
Section 2. Members shall pay annual dues by February 1 of each year.
Members shall be considered inactive if current dues are not paid by March 15. Upon receipt of current dues, members will be re-instated as an active member.
If dues are not paid by May 30th, their membership is forfeited, and they must reapply to become a member.
Section 3. Membership dues. Current annual general membership dues have been set at $15. Unless any duly assembled convention chooses, membership dues will not change from one year to the next. Dues are established by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of any assembled convention. Dues that are changed by an assembled convention shall take effect the following year. Junior membership in NDAB shall be $3 per member, unless any convention takes action to change dues for this membership class.
Section 4. Those qualified to vote at conventions of NDAB shall be Lifetime members and adult members who have paid their annual membership dues. Non-voting members include honorary members, junior members, and invited guests.
Section 5. Lifetime Membership. The title of Lifetime Member may be conferred on any worthy member at any convention. Persons, so entitled, shall not be required to pay dues, but shall retain their full membership rights. The recognition as a lifetime member shall be based upon accumulated years of service to NDAB and the person so honored shall have demonstrated a consistent dedication to the purposes for which the organization was established.
Section 6. Honorary Members. The title of Honorary Member may be conferred on any person at any convention by a majority vote. Persons, so entitled, shall not hold office, vote, or be required to pay dues. Recognition as an honorary NDAB member may be conferred on any person outside the organization whose service to the community has in some manner benefited people who are blind or visually impaired.
Section 7. While conventions are in session, members shall be respectful of others and shall be attentive to the business at hand.
Section 8. Members shall not engage in activities in the name of NDAB which are determined to reflect negatively on the good name of this organization or to engage in activities that are determined to be detrimental to its mission.
Section 9. Suspension and Expulsion of Members.
A. A member may be suspended or expelled for any of the following reasons:
1. Flagrant violation of the constitution, by-laws, or the rules of the organization.
2. Unauthorized activity in the name of the organization.
3. A member acts in such a manner that the individual’s activities relative to NDAB are considered to be detrimental to the organization or the person in question encourages such acts in others.
B. After due notice, an accused member shall be entitled to a fair hearing by the executive board, which upon proof of guilt shall expel the member.
1. The decision of the executive board may be appealed to the convention by filing a signed notice with the secretary thirty days in advance of the convention. A two-thirds vote of the convention shall be required to reverse the ruling of the executive board.
2. Members who have been expelled for cause may apply for reinstatement.
3. A two-thirds (2/3) vote of the executive board shall be required to reinstate such a member.
Article III. Elections
Section 1. Election of officers shall be conducted on the last day of the convention and their installation shall be made the final order of business prior to adjournment.
Section 2. Election for the offices of president, vice president, and treasurer shall be conducted at conventions held in the even numbered years.
Section 3. Election for the offices of secretary and development director shall be conducted at conventions held in odd numbered years.
Section 4. The convention shall annually elect an editor for the Promoter and shall determine the policies of the Promoter.
Section 5. The convention shall annually elect a delegate and an alternate delegate to attend the subsequent year’s ACB Conference and Convention. The alternate delegate will serve as delegate if for whatever reason the elected delegate is unable to attend.
Article IV. Officer Duties
Section 1. The president shall have the following duties:
A. To be the chief administrative officer of the organization.
B. To preside at all conventions and meetings of the executive board. As its presiding officer, the president votes whenever a tie vote occurs, a secret ballot is cast, or a poll of the board is taken.
C. To be informed as to the proper rules and procedures for conducting meetings in an efficient and harmonious manner.
D. To appoint a sergeant at arms and a parliamentarian for each convention. Duties of the parliamentarian shall be to interpret and to clarify the constitution, by-laws, standing rules, and rules of order at the request of the chair. Duties of the sergeant-at-arms shall be to help maintain order and to ensure that voting is done in accordance with the standing rules of the convention.
E. To appoint the members of all committees not otherwise provided for by the convention or by the executive board and to replace vacancies that occur.
F. To serve as ex-officio member on all committees with no voting rights.
Section 2. The vice president shall have the following duties:
A. To preside at meetings of the executive board when the president is absent from the chair.
B. To succeed to the office of president in case of death, resignation, or disqualification of the president.
C. The vice president shall be a permanent chairperson of the membership committee.
Section 3. The secretary shall have the following duties:
A. To take, record and keep all minutes of meetings of the executive board and proceedings of the convention and be prepared to present them upon request.
B. To submit the minutes of board meetings and convention proceedings for publication in the quarterly newsletter. Minutes taken while the board is in executive session for the purpose of discussing matters that are of a sensitive nature may not be submitted for publication.
C. To keep on file records of all official transactions of the executive board and other committees.
D. To call the roll of the membership when requested by the chair. The response to roll call shall determine whether a quorum has been established.
E. To keep a roll of voting members at convention from a classified list. This list should correspond to the one that which is kept by the treasurer.
F. To take care of mailing and official correspondence when required to do so.
G. The secretary shall issue notices of special meetings as instructed by the executive board.
1. Notices of meetings shall be issued not less than thirty (30) days prior to such meetings.
2. The text of proposed amendments to the Constitution, By-Laws or Standing Rules may be included with notices of meetings.
Section 4. The treasurer shall have the following duties:
A. To be in charge of collections of dues and special assessments and keep a classified list of members’ status as to payment of current dues.
B. To make all disbursements authorized by the convention or the executive board. These disbursements shall be made by bank check or debit card payment.
C. To be the official custodian of all monies, commercial papers and all property not otherwise provided for. In this capacity, the treasurer is to receive all monies paid to the account of NDAB and keep an accurate record of the same.
D. To be bonded at the expense of NDAB in an amount no less than is sufficient to protect the assets of the organization at any given time.
E. To procure an annual review/compilation agreed upon proposal of the books by a qualified auditor or accountant for review by the executive board. In addition, collaborate with the accountant to prepare the organization’s 990 report for the IRS and ensure that this report is submitted annually before the filing deadline.
F. To serve as the organization’s registered agent. In this capacity, the registered agent will receive all communications from the Secretary of State and notice of process if a lawsuit is ever filed against the organization.
G. To serve as the chairperson of the finance committee. The committee’s composition is to include the development director, at least one other member of NDAB or the community to advise the executive board regarding the management of NDAB’s finances.
H. To collaborate with the finance committee to prepare the proposed annual fiscal budget that is presented for review by the Executive Board and for approval from members that are assembled in annual Convention.
Section 5. The development director shall have the following duties:
A. To coordinate and lead the fundraising efforts that are conducted by the organization with assistance from the executive board and the membership.
B. To report results of fundraising efforts to meetings of the board and to the membership while they are assembled in annual convention.
C. To investigate potential fundraising and grant opportunities.
D. To collaborate with the treasurer to prepare the annual fiscal budget that is presented for approval to members that are assembled in annual Convention.
Section 6. The immediate past president shall provide advice and counsel as needed to the president regarding matters pertaining to the administration of the organization.
Article V. Executive Board
Section 1. General Duties. Members of the executive board shall have the following duties:
A. To regularly attend meetings of the board and be knowledgeable about the business that needs to be discussed and acted upon.
B. To be actively involved in the activities of the organization and to provide leadership on the committees of NDAB.
C. To serve as voting members of the executive board.
Section 2. Good Faith. Members of the executive board are expected to carry out their role with the same care an ordinarily prudent person would use in managing their own affairs. Meaning members of the Board are to act in good faith, stay informed, and exercise independent judgment when making decisions on behalf of NDAB.
Section 3. Members of the executive board shall be reimbursed for the necessary expenses they have incurred on behalf of NDAB.
Section 4. The executive board shall be kept informed of matters of business concerning NDAB by the president and/or the secretary.
Section 5. For voting purposes, the executive board may be polled by postal mail, electronic mail, or telephone call. The secretary shall keep an accurate record of such polls.
Section 6. The executive board shall receive and act upon petitions by members if such petitions carry the names of at least ten percent (10%) of members in good standing.
Section 7. The executive board may suspend a member and present the case to the next convention with recommendations for probation, expulsion, or acquittal.
Article VI. Committees
Section 1. The standing committees of NDAB shall be: Awards, Constitution and Bylaws, Convention Planning, Executive, Finance, Fundraising, Legislative and Advocacy, Membership, Nominations, Public Relations and Education, Publication and Communications, Scholarship, Sports and Recreation and Summer Camp.
Section 2. Standing committees are ongoing committees while most ad hoc committees have a limited timeframe. Ad hoc committees are appointed by the president after a request has been expressed by the executive board, whenever a motion or resolution has been passed by the convention or as deemed necessary to complete a specific task.
Section 3. A committee chairperson may be granted the privilege of appointing their preferences for committee or sub-committee members.
Section 4. Members of any committee who incur expenses on behalf of NDAB shall be reimbursed, subject to approval by the executive board.
Article VII. Rules of Order
Section 1. Robert’s Rules of Order revised, shall govern on all parliamentary questions not otherwise provided for in the Articles of Incorporation or in the By-Laws.
Article VIII. Amendments to the By-Laws
Section 1. Any proposed amendment to these By-Laws shall be submitted in writing to the executive board at least 60 days prior to the convention.
Section 2. A motion to amend the By-Laws may also originate from the floor of a regular convention. A motion to consider the amendment shall be entertained. The said motion shall require a simple majority. If the motion to consider passes, the proposed amendment shall be placed on the agenda of the next convention.
Section 3. A two-thirds (2/3) vote of those present and voting at a convention is required to pass all proposed amendments.
Article IX. Dissolution
Section 1. Upon the dissolution of this organization, the executive board after paying or making provisions for the payment of all of the liabilities of NDAB, shall dispose of all the assets of this corporation to such organizations which have been organized and operated exclusively for charitable, educational, religious, or scientific purposes qualifying under section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code and any future tax code.
Section 1. The PROMOTER shall be the official publication of NDAB.
Section 2. Official notices shall be published in the Promoter.
Section 3. The secretary shall have a copy of the By-Laws and Standing Rules at hand during conventions.
Section 4. Members in good standing entitled to vote shall wear during elections, a mark of identification such as a tag, colored ribbon or other token which identifies their eligibility to vote.
Section 5. A secret ballot may be called for by any member when controversial matters are being considered.
Section 6. The president shall appoint three (3) tellers for all secret balloting.