ASC Constitution – Special General Meeting
The ASC Executive is calling a Special General Meeting to discuss, and vote on, an updated ASC Constitution.
When: Wednesday 18 November 1.00pm – 3.00pm
Who: Current ASC members
Where: Teatro Vivaldi Restaurant, ANU Arts Centre, University Avenue, Canberra ACT 0200 http://vivaldirestaurant.com.au/
Cost: Free (attendees can order lunch individually if desired)
Proxies: If you cannot attend in person but still wish to vote, you can nominate a proxy via someone who is attending in person. Complete the Word version form (Appointment of Proxy 2015 Special General Meeting) or PDF version form (Appointment of Proxy 2015 Special General Meeting) and notify firstname.lastname@example.org to make your proxy official.
ASC is an incorporated association, registered with the ACT’s Registrar-General. One advantage is that ASC has the status of a legal entity and can sign contracts and operate bank accounts. Another advantage is to protect ASC Members because the organisation has written rules and must file annual returns (including audited accounts). Incorporation also protects ASC Executive members from legal action.
Associations wishing to incorporate must have rules (a constitution) which explain how they will operate. These rules out who can be a member, what the subscription is, how the executive is elected, what the financial year is, and so on. To help associations write a constitution, the Registrar-General provides a set of model rules, and there are other useful documents to guide us including the Associations Practice Manual and the Associations Incorporation Act 1991.
The ASC Constitution did conform to the Registrar-General’s requirements when it was originally written in 1994, but since then has been amended a number of times and some compulsory areas have been left out. The current ASC Constitution no longer conforms with the Incorporations Act.
The revised Constitution presented today has been checked by the Office of the Registrar-General and does conform with their requirements.
Importantly, the new document does not change anything about the way ASC will run, although the wording and organisation are different.
Proposed changes – some examples
One change is to move some rules and practices out of the Constitution and into the By-Laws. This supplementary document explains and enlarges upon rules formally set out in the Constitution. The big advantage of having By-Laws is that they are easy to change at a general meeting, and do not require a special general meeting with 21 days notice.
An example of this is in the subscription fee. The new draft Constitution says: “The annual membership fee of the association is $2 or, if any other amount has been determined by resolution of the committee, that other amount.”
Proposed By-Law number 3 expands on this: “The Membership fee will vary with the change in the annual inflation rate. The fee will be confirmed at the Annual General Meeting each year, and come into effect immediately.”
The advantage of this is that the AGM can set the annual subscription without having to amend the Constitution.
Current ASC Constitution: Constitution amended 2006, 07, 08, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 amended 5 Dec 2014
Revised ASC Constitution: ASC Constitution Revised 26 Oct 2015
Word proxy form: Appointment of Proxy 2015 Special General Meeting
PDF proxy form: Appointment of Proxy 2015 Special General Meeting