ABOUT US

MSVFA By-Laws

Table of Contents

ARTICLE I – NAME and OBJECTIVE
ARTICLE II – MEMBERSHIP
ARTICLE III – MEETINGS of MEMBERS
ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS OF THIS ASSOCIATION BOARD OF GOVERNORS
ARTICLE V – COMMITTEES
ARTICLE VI – EXPENSES
ARTICLE VII – DIRECTOR and STAFF
ARTICLE VIII – AMENDMENTS
ARTICLE IX – GENDER
ARTICLE X – RULES OF ORDER
ARTICLE XI– INDEMNIFICATION
Article XII– LIQUIDATION AND DISSOLUTION
Revision History

ARTICLE I –NAME and OBJECTIVE 1.1

This organization shall bestyled and known as the Minnesota State Volunteer FirefightersAssociation, Inc. Hereinafter in the Constitution and By-Laws the word"Association" shall mean the Minnesota State Volunteer FirefightersAssociation (MSVFA), Inc.

1.2 The objectives of theAssociation shall be to establish harmony of action in the cultivationof benevolent fellowship in support of volunteer firefighter issues,assist with applications in securing grants, promote fire protectionfor all citizens, and promote the best interest of the volunteerfirefighter and the fire service of this State.

1.3 The Associationfiscal year shall be from January 1 each year through December 31 ofthe year.

1.4 The articles ofincorporation provide that the objectives and mission statement of theAssociation are:

MISSION STATEMENT:

The Association's mission is toprovide a responsible voice and leadership to the VolunteerFirefighters of Minnesota, with the intent being to minimize loss oflife and property in all aspects of Volunteer Emergency Response.

OBJECTIVES:

In furtherance of the Association'smission, the Association's objectives are:

  1. To provide information, training and education for the Volunteer Firefighter.
  2. To solicit statewide membership from every volunteer in Minnesota, and to encourage active and concerned participation in the Association's objectives.
  3. To encourage co-operation with all Emergency Response organizations through participation on the Minnesota Fire Service Advisory Committee.
  4. To establish responsible representation and leadership towards the role of the volunteer firefighter in fire prevention and public safety on all boards and agencies.
  5. To organize the State into geographic districts and adopt the Districts of the Minnesota State Volunteer Firefighters Association (MSVFA) as the MSVFA official regions.
[Top]

ARTICLE II – MEMBERSHIP

Applications for membershipshall be made to the Secretary. All memberships shall be granted upon amajority vote of the Board of Governors. An appropriate membership cardshall be issued to each member of the Association, including Honoraryand Lifetime members. Membership in this association shall consist offive classes:
  • Active
  • Associate
  • Honorary
  • Lifetime
  • Corporate
2.1 Active members mustbe: Active or retired non-chief officer membersof all regularly organized volunteer fire departments (volunteer,paid-on-call) in Minnesota, the Minnesota Department of NaturalResources (MN DNR) Firefighters and the U.S. Forest ServiceFirefighters.
Any member of the Association entering the Armed Forces of the UnitedStates shall remain a member in good standing, without further paymentof dues until 90 days after release from active military service.Association members leaving the fire service may remain members as longas they pay their dues.
An ACTIVE member is entitled to:a. vote at general membership andannual meetings.b. hold an officer'sposition either on the Executive or the Board of Governors.c. be appointed to anycommittee, standing or special.d. participate inindividual benefit programs as offered by the Association.e. participate in benefitprograms as offered through membership in the Association.f. review financialstatements and other business summaries as prepared by the Officers, asnotified by the newsletter.g. receive regularupdates of the activities of the Association.h. attend scheduledAssociation Training Schools offered in any region.i. other privileges asmay be offered by the Association.

2.2 Associate Members: All active members that have accepted the following ranks; Fire Chief,Assistant Chief, Deputy Chief, Battalion Chief, District Chief, Chiefof Training or any other rank of Chief shall become an associatemember at that time. Associate members may attend all meetings but maynot vote and shall not hold office or serve on committees. Dues willincrease at the time of Associate Member status takes affect.

2.3 Honorary members
mustbe qualified citizens and of good moralcharacter, who have made a respectable contribution to the fire serviceand must have demonstrated their interest in the fire service. HonoraryMembers may participate in all celebrations of the Association andattend all meetings but shall not participate nor have a vote. Allactive volunteer or paid on call firefighters are hereby granted thestatus of honorary firefighter, and upon written application and shallhave the option of converting this status to Active status uponpayment of annual dues to the Association on an annual or multi-yearbasis.

2.4 Life membership mayonly be bestowed on fire fighters who have madea respectable contribution to the Fire Service, distinguishedthemselves in the fire service and the affairs of the Association.Recommendations for life membership must be submitted by the activemember of the Association to the Executive Committee for adetermination of eligibility and approval or disapproval. If approved,the Executive Board will present the name(s) for vote under NewBusiness at the next annual meeting. Each Executive Board memberleaving office in good standing shall be granted life membership in theAssociation. Lifetime members shall be accorded all privileges of theAssociation, including the right to vote. Life Members who arecurrently serving as achief officer as defined in section 2.2 shall lose voting privileges.

2.5 Corporate Members: Allrepresentatives of a registered corporationorganizations dealing with apparatus, equipment, supplies, or servicesused by the fire service may apply to become a corporate member.Corporate members may attend all meetings and participate, but may notvote or hold office in the Association and are not eligible forparticipation in any Association benefit packages, other than trainingsessions.

2.6 The Association mailing list of members is deemed exclusive to theOfficers of the Association and is not available for reproduction byany person, agency or organization without permission.

2.7 Mebmership Dues

2.7.1 Annual dues for membership in the Association shall be $10.00.Persons desiring to become an Active member of the Association shallmake application to the Secretary. If the applicant is eligible,membership shall be granted. Dues paid by any member can be paid inmultiples (more than one year) at a time. Associate Membership memberof the Association shall make application to the Secretary. Duespayable to the Association shall be $30.00 per member.

2.7.2 Honorary and Lifetime members shall pay no dues.

2.7.3 Corporate members annual dues shall be based on levels per year.Entities desiring to become a corporate member of this Associationshall make application to the Secretary. If the applicant is eligible,membership shall be granted.

2.7.4 The membership year shall extend from the first day of Januarythrough the thirty-first day of December. After the first year ofmembership, dues are payable prior to the first day of each calendaryear.

2.7.5 The Board shall have the ability to change the dues structurefrom time to time, to best accomplish the Association’s business.

2.7.6 Upon terminationof membership for cause or otherwise, a member is not entitled to anyrefund of dues paid.

[Top]

ARTICLE III – MEETINGS of MEMBERS

3.1 AnnualMeetings: ThisAssociation shall hold its annual meeting insuch place, and at such time, as designated by the ConferenceCommittee. The annual meeting of this Association shall be limited tothree calendar days. The date and location of the next annual meetingshall be designated by a majority vote of the general membershipsession. If no place is selected for the annual Meeting, the ExecutiveCommittee shall secure a meeting place. A failure to hold an annualmeeting shall not dissolve the Association.
3.2 Order ofBusiness

  1. Meeting called to order
    • Opening ceremonies
    • Salute to the flag of our country
    • Moment of silence for departed members
  2. Quorum call
  3. Roll call of Executive Officers
  4. Report of Credentials Committee ♦ Act on applications for membership
  5. Roll call of Members
  6. Reading and Adoption of the Minutes
  7. Report of Executive Officers
  8. Report of Board of Governors
  9. Report of Organizations
  10. Report of Committees

    • Audit Committee 5.1
    • Conference Committee 5.2
    • Credential Committee 5.3
    • Education and Competitions Committee 5.4
    • Ethics and Professional Responsibility Committee 5.5
    • Firefighters Memorial and Benevolence Committee 5.7
    • Finance Advisory Committee 5.8
    • Legislative Committee 5.9
    • Media Committee 5.10
    • Membership Awards and Recognition 5.11
    • Nominations Committee 5.12
    • Public Relations 5.13
    • Resolutions and By-Laws 5.14

  11. Report of Other Committees
  12. Unfinished Business
  13. New Business
  14. Good and welfare of the association
  15. Report on attendance and place of next meeting
  16. Adjournment
The Order of Business may be changed at any time by a majority vote ofthe meeting with the exception of the election of Officers.

3.3 Notice ofMeetings:
Printednotice of all membership meetings shallbe mailed to all members of the association and to each department whohas members of the association no less than 30 days prior to themeeting.

3.4 Quorum: The members presentat any properly announced meeting shallconstitute a quorum.

3.5 Voting:
– 3.5.1 Active members with current dues paid and registered as delegatesshall be eligible to vote. Active Members not attending a meeting mayvote by proxy. An Active Member’s dues must be paid thirty days priorto the meeting date to be eligible to cast a vote.

3.5.2 Lifetime members who are registered as delegates shall beeligible to vote. Lifetime members, not attending may vote by proxy.Life Members shall retain voting privileges.

3.5.3 Associate and Honorary Members do not have voting privileges.

3.5.4 Simple majority will determine Approval/Disapproval.

3.6Special Meetings: Aspecial meeting may be held at such time andplace as the interest of the Association may require but they shall beconfined to the business for which they were called. The Chair, or inhis absence, the Vice-Chair, may call such meetings, with the consentof a majority of the members of the Board of Governors.

[Top]

ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS OF THIS ASSOCIATION BOARD OF GOVERNORS

The officers of this Association shall consist of a Chair, a ViceChair, a Secretary, a Treasurer, and seven Regional Governors and thisshall constitute the Board of Governors.
4.1 Terms: Termsor length ofservice as an Officer or Governor are asfollows;
  • Chair – Four year term elected on the even calendar year.
  • Vice-Chair – Four year term elected on the odd calendar year.
  • Secretary – Four year term elected on the even calendar year.
  • Treasurer – Four year term elected on the odd calendar year.
  • Regional Governor – Four year term. Term will start January 1st each year.
Region Governors and alternates are elected at the Regional levelrepresenting their constituents wishes to the Association. Regionsshall have the same procedure followed as the Executive Board in thateven numbered regions will elect for five years at the

Associations inception and odd numbered regions will be for four yearsto stagger elections.
For the purposes of this Association’s inception the following willhold and be enforced through the first election period, the Chair andthe Secretary shall be for five years.
The Board of Governors’ shall be deemed the representative body of theAssociation, empowered by the members to oversee the operations andconduct of the Executive Committee.
Officers serving as Executive Officers may also serve as RegionalGovernors’.
In the event of a vacancy among the elected Officers same shall befilled by an appointment made by the Chair, or, in the case of theChair, by the Board of Governors’ through a majority vote.

4.2Meetings and Notice: TheBoard of Governors shall meet at leastquarterly when feasible, at an agreed upon time and place. AllBoard meetings shall be noticed via the website no less than 14days prior to the meeting.

4.3Elections: The Chair, ViceChair, Secretary, and Treasurer shall beappointed by the Board of Governors’ at the annual meeting. Thesuccessful candidates must receive only a simple majority of the votescast. Candidates must be registered and present at the meeting to beeligible for appointment, unless providentially hindered and thisrequirement waived by the Board of Governors.

4.4 RegionalGovernors: Theregions shall be numbered one throughseven. The Regions and the Governors of the Association shall consistof firefighters in each region by county of;

4.4.1 Region 1Beltrami, Clearwater, Cook,Itasca, Kittison, Koochiching, Lake, Lake of the Woods, Marshall,Pennington, Polk, Red Lake, Roseau, St. Louis

4.4.2 Region 2Becker, Clay, Douglas, Grant,Hubbard, Mahnomen, Norman, Otter Tail, Pope, Stevens, Traverse, Wadena,Wilkin

4.4.3 Region 3Aitkin, Carlton, Cass, CrowWing, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Todd

4.4.4 Region 4Anoka, Benton, Chisago,Isanti, Kanabec, Pine, Ramsey, Sherburne, Stearns, Washington;

4.4.5 Region 5Big Stone, Chippewa,Kandiyohi, Lac Qui Parle, Lincoln, Lyon, Meeker, McLeod, Renville,Swift, Wright, Yellow Medicine

4.4.6 Region 6Blue Earth, Brown, Cottonwood,Faribault, Jackson, Le Surer, Martin, Murray, Nicollet, Nobles,Pipestone, Redwood, Rice, Rock, Sibley, Waseca, Watonwan

4.4.7 Region 7Carver, Dakota, Dodge,Fillmore, Freeborn, Goodhue, Hennepin, Houston, Mower, Olmsted, Scott,Steele, Wabasha, Winona

4.4.8 All officers and governors or their designated alternate mustattend all Board Meetings, unless excused by the Chair.
Minnesota State Volunteer FirefightersAssociation Regions




4.5 Quorum: Three ExecutiveCommittee members and three Board ofGovernors members shall constitute a quorum (6 total). A quorum must bepresent for business transactions to take place and motions to pass.

4.6 Officers and Duties:
The Oath ofoffice shall be:
I do accept the office of the same now placed upon me without mentalreservation. I promise to perform my duties without fear or favor tothe best of my ability. Having in mind the good of the Association andits membership, I will counsel with the other officers as to the bestcourse to pursue at all times.
All officers (elected andappointed) shall take the oath of office.

4.6.1 TheChair will be theChief Executive Officer of the Associationand preside at all meetings. The Chair announces all appointments tocommittees, as specified in the By Laws and appointed by the Board andsigns all orders duly granted by the Association or Board of Governors.

4.6.2 TheVice-Chair shallassist the Chair in the performance ofhis/her duties. The Vice-Chair shall perform such duties as may berequired of them by the Association in meeting assembly. The Vice-Chairshall assume the duties of the Chair in the event of death, disability,or other inability of the Chair to serve.

4.6.3 TheSecretary shall;• attend all board meetings• keep a complete recordof the proceedings• at each annual meeting,make a report, in writing, of all activities of the Association• maintain a list of allpaid members.• issue all callspertaining to the Association or Executive Committee• keep such books andperform such duties as may be required by the Executive Committee• keep an accurate recordof all activities of the Association• turn over to thesuccessor in office, all equipment, books and papers belonging to theAssociation

4.6.3.1 The Secretary shall attend all meetings of the Association, andwhen requested, the meetings of its committees. Should he be unable toattend an Annual Meeting he shall have a Representative present andarrange for all necessary books and papers to be available.

4.6.3.2 In case the Secretary should, through sickness or absence, orsome other unavoidable cause, be unable at any time to perform theduties of that office, a competent person shall be designated to act inthe position. Subject to the approval of the Executive Committee.

4.6.3.3 Upon retiring from office, the Secretary shall deliver to theExecutive Committee all the equipment, books and papers in his/herpossession appertaining to his/her office.

4.6.3.4 All equipment, books, papers and property of the Associationshall at all times be at the disposition of the Executive Committee,for examination, within forty-eight hours after due notice.

4.6.4 TheTreasurer shall;
  • attend all board meetings • keep a complete financial record of the Association
  • provide a statement of the financial condition of the Association to the annual meeting
  • issue all payments pertaining to the Association or Executive Committee
  • collect all money due the Association, and keep an accurate record of all monies received or disbursed in a form that meets generally accepted business practices
  • maintain a list of all paid members
  • urn over to the successor in office, all equipment, books and papers belonging to the Association.
4.6.4.1 The Treasurer shall attend all meetings of the Association, befully prepared to answer or discus the financial issues and whenrequested, attend the meetings of its committees as requested. Shouldthe Treasurer be unable to attend an Annual meeting the Treasurer shallhave a Representative present and arrange for all necessary books andpapers to be available.

4.6.4.2 The Treasurer shall, at each annual meeting, make a report, inwriting, of all sums of money received and disbursements made, showingthe balance, if any, in the treasury or investments.

4.6.4.3 The Treasurer shall, before entering office, shall be bondedand surety in the sum of ten percent of the associations assetsdetermined yearly, for the faithful discharge of these duties. TheExecutive Committee shall have the authority to increase the amount ofthe bond as desired. The bond must be satisfactory to and approved bythe Board of Governors.4.6.4.4 All equipment, books, vouchers, papers and property of theAssociation shall at all times be at the disposition of the ExecutiveCommittee, for examination, within forty-eight hours after due notice.

4.6.4.5 In case the Treasurer should, through sickness or absence, orsome other unavoidable cause, be unable at any time to perform theduties of that office, a competent person shall be designated to act inthe position. The designation of the person to act in the vacantposition shall be subject to the approval of the surety bond and theExecutive Committee.

4.6.4.6 Upon leaving office, the Treasurer shall deliver to theExecutive Committee all the equipment, books and papers in his/herpossession appertaining to his/her office. The Finance Committee shallvalidate and properly check the books. If found correct, the FinanceCommittee shall approve them, and turn them over to the ExecutiveCommittee, who shall cancel the Treasurer's bond and turn the books andpapers over to the successor of the office. This shall be done within30 days.

4 .6.4.7 The Treasurer shall deposit in such bank or banks so designatedby the Association, all monies received by him that belong to theAssociation, over and above the amount of fifty dollars. These depositsshould be made in the name of the Association, and can only be drawn bycheck against the same.

4.6.5 The Association may accept donations and monies fromadvertisements. All checks shall be made payable to the Minnesota StateVolunteer Firefighters Association (MSVFA).
4.7 Removal from Office: ThisAssociation shall have the right toremove from office any Officer of the Association for any corrupt actwhile in Office. It shall also have the right to remove from itsmembership any officer or member of the Association for any corrupt actfor conduct unbecoming to an Officer or member of the Association,after charges in writing have been preferred and the defendant givendue notice of said charges and an opportunity to be heard in his owndefense. All matters shall be referred to the Ethics Committee fordisposition.

4.8 Vacancies: When a vacancyon the board exists mid-term, theSecretary must receive any nominations from present board members atleast 20 days in advance of a board meeting. These nominations shall besent to board members with the meeting announcement, to be voted on atthe meeting. The vacancy will be filled only to the end of theparticular board member’s term.

4.9 Resignation, termination andabsences: Resignation from the boardmust be in writing and received by the Secretary. A board member shallbe terminated from the board due to excess absences, more than twounexcused absences from board meetings in a year. A board member may beremoved for other reasons by a three-fourths vote of the remaininggovernors.

4.10 Board of GovernorsMeetings; Board of Governors meetings may becalled by the Chair, with the consent of a majority of the members ofthe Board of Governors. In all cases of Board of Governors meetings theitems to be considered must be stated in the call.

4.11 The Board of Governors shall administer all the personal propertyof the Association with full power to administer the estate of theAssociation for the sole use and benefit of this Association. The Boardof Governors shall meet on call of the Chair, or on call signed by amajority of Board of Governors. Board of Governors members shall submitwritten reports, requests for items to be included on a meeting agendamust be made to the Executive Committee prior to their scheduledmeeting.

[Top]

ARTICLE V COMMITTEES

StandingCommittees: TheChairshall appoint the following standingcommittees, which shall consist of no fewer than three members each normore than ten. Their written reports shall be made to the Board ofGovernors of the activities of the Committee within two weeks aftereach meeting.
  1. Audit Committee 5.1
  2. Conference Committee 5.2
  3. Credential Committee 5.3
  4. Education and Competitions Committee 5.4
  5. Ethics and Professional Responsibility Committee 5.5
  6. Executive Committee 5.6
  7. Firefighters Memorial and Benevolence Committee 5.7
  8. Finance Advisory Committee 5.8
  9. Legislative Committee 5.9
  10. Media Committee 5.10
  11. Membership Awards and Recognition 5.11
  12. Nominations Committee 5.12
  13. Public Relations 5.13
  14. Resolutions and By-Laws 5.14
  15. Other Committees 5.15
  16. Other Positions at Meetings 5.16
The following committees that shall consist of a minimum of threemembers:

5.1 -Audit Committee The AuditCommittee shall:

1. It shall be the Audit Committee to audit the books and check allvouchers and checks of the Association and make a correct statement tothe Executive Committee of the Association and to perform such otherduties as may be directed by the Executive Committee of the Association

5.2 -Conference Committee TheConference Committee shall:
1. Plan the location of the annual conference.
2. Recommend to the executive board the dates the annual conference isto be held.
3. Develop and publish the annual conference information no less than90 days prior to the annual conference.
4. Insure that the annual conference information is mailed to allmembers of the association and to each department who has members ofthe association no less than 60 days prior to the annual conference.

5.3 -Credential Committee TheCredentials Committee shall:

1. Obtain from the Secretary and Treasurer's records the names of themembers who are entitled to a voice and a vote according to the rulesand regulations of this association.
2. Determine the members in attendance at the annual meeting meet therequirements specified herein.
3. Certify all those eligible to act as delegates in the conduct ofbusiness at the sessions of the conference.

5.4 -Education andCompetitions Committee The Education andCompetitions Committee shall:
1. Provide, whenever requested, educational programs, speakers, anddemonstrations deemed advisable for the instruction and advancement ofthe membership of the Association.
2. Prepare seminar schedule.
3. Coordinate education with the conference committee.
4. Coordinate competition events for the Association with theconference committee.

5.5 -Ethics and ProfessionalResponsibility Committee The Ethics andProfessional Responsibility Committee shall:The MSVFA Ethics andProfessional Responsibility Committee is an advisory group appointed bythe Chair. It reviews, on request, ethical or moral questions that maycome occasionally. Committee members include the vice Chair, twomembers of the Board of Governors, three active members, and onehonorary member.
1. To act as member advocate on members fire service issues. Thecommittee will also address, in an advisory capacity, ethical dilemmaspresented from the membership and the Board of Governors.
2. Develop and recommend MSVFA policies and guidelines that defineethical principles for conduct within the Association and whilerepresenting the Association.
3. Upon request, the committee will provide advisory consultation andreview in cases where ethical dilemmas are perceived by a member andthe board of Governors or MSVFA staff. The primary responsibility willbe to encourage dialog, educate, identify issues offer viableoptions, seek supplemental resources, and encourage problem resolutionat the lowest level.
4. The committee will establish forums for the discussion of ethicalconcerns. The committee will educate Association members aboutAssociation policies regarding ethical issues.

5.6 -Executive Committee TheExecutive Committee shall:The Executive Committee of theAssociation shall consist of the Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary,Treasurer and three Regional Governors.
1. The duties of the Executive Committee shall be to have published theproceedings of the Association, and transact all business of theAssociation during the time intervening between the annual meetings.The Executive Committee shall be responsible for the general managementof the affairs of the Association, and shall suggest to theAssociation, at its annual meeting, such rules and regulations as itmay deem to its best interest. A majority of the Executive Committeeshall constitute a quorum, and a majority of such quorum may determineall questions.
2. The Executive Committee shall meet at such times and place as theydecide, or on a call of the Chair.
3. The Board of Governors will select three Regional governors to serveon the executive committee immediately following the annual meeting ofthe Association.
4. If any vacancies shall occur, by reason of death, disability otherinability or unwillingness to serve, the vacancy may be filled by theExecutive Committee, for the unexpired term.

5.7 -Firefighters Memorial AndBenevolence Committee1. The memorial function of thisCommittee is to help establish and maintain a respectable memorial forthe Association and all firefighters of Minnesota.
2. The benevolentfunction of this Committee is to help member firefighters who have runinto a stroke of bad luck or tragedy involving themselves or theirfamilies. On one occasion, the family of an injured firefighter mayneed assistance that this committee and the Association may be able tohelp with. Once a request is made for assistance or a Committee memberis aware of possible need for assistance, the committee will discussthe request and make a decision based on their agreement.

5.8 -Financial AdvisoryCommittee The Financial Advisory Committeeshall:1. Recommend to board the properexpenditures of all money received.
2. The committee shallmeet as needed. Dates to coincide with board meetings and annualmeeting. Special meetings may be called by the chairperson with theapproval of the Chair.
3. The committee shallreport at executive and board meetings, annual meeting and any dulycalled special meeting with a complete accounting of the administrationand management of the fund generating agent or any fund raising effortsof the association.
4. The Finance committeeshall consist of three (3) members: The current Chair and two (2)members elected at large. The two members will serve two (2) year termsthat are staggered.

5.9 -Legislative Committee TheLegislative Committee shall:1. Propose, monitor, lobby for andprovide education in important state and federal legislation matters.2. Participate on stateand national joint legislative activities that benefit our members andthe fire service.

5.10 -Media Committee. TheMedia Committee shall:1. The Media Standing Committee ischarged with facilitating all Association communications of the website2. The Media StandingCommittee shall develop website policy3. The Media StandingCommittee assists Region Governors of the Association to developwebsite resources.

5.11 -Membership Awards andRecognition Committee The MembershipAwards and Recognition Committee shall:1. identify a program purpose.2. define award themes& selection criteria.3. set the finaldecision-making body for the award.4. address theparticipation of past recipients.5. define votingprocedures.6. ensure consistency inthe voting/selection process.7. establish arecognition program for the association.8. determine the types ofawards of the recognition program.9. ensure compliance withthe association's recognition program policies.The Membership Awards andRecognition Committee does not necessarily have to serve as the awardselection committee.

5.12 -Nomination Committee TheNominating Committee shall:1. Meet and prepare a slate ofqualified candidates for election to the various elective offices.2. Tabulate the votes andannounce the results to the members.

5.13 - Public RelationsCommittee The Public Relations Committee shall:
The Public Relations Committee strives to ensure effectivecommunication within the Association and throughout its greatercommunity by evaluation of communication needs, assistance toAssociation committees, and projects of its own.1. oversee the Associationnewsletter.2. handle all pressreleases and notices coming out of the Association into the community.3. be responsible for theAssociation bulletin boards and outdoor message boards.4. handle follow-upletters to people who communicate with the Association.5. act as a supportcommittee for other committees of the Association with their eventplanning, publicizing events and surveys.6. facilitatecommunication between the Association leadership and the members.7. in general, to reachout to more firefighters and to get them as involved as possible.8. release expresspositions in accordance with the Executive Committee of the Associationplatform.9. coordinate pressconferences around significant figures and issues.10. draft and distributenotifications of significant, newsworthy events relevant figures,platforms and growth.11. The Public RelationsCommittee shall prepare and present appropriate resolutions to themembership of the Association.

5.14 -Resolutions and BylawsCommittee The Resolution Committee shall:
1. Prepare and present any proposedrevisions or amendments to theRules Regulations to the Board for its study not less than 60 daysbefore the annual meeting.
2. Present all resolutions to theactive members attending the business session of the annual meetingimmediately following the closing of the nominations for electedofficers.
3. Tabulate the votes onresolutions and report the results to at theannual meeting.

5.15 - Other CommitteesOther Committees of theAssociation shall be established as needed.

5.16 - Other Positions at Meetings

5.10.1Parliamentarian
1. It shall be the duty ofParliamentarian to resolve issue of procedures at the all Executivemeetings, Board meetings and at the annual meeting.
2. Roberts Rules of Ordershall be the governing rule of order.

5.10.2Sergeant at Arms
1. It shall be the duty of eachRegional Governor to assist with the voting process at the annualmeeting.

[Top]

ARTICLE VI – EXPENSES

All approved expenses incurred while performing official duties for theAssociation shall be reimbursed by submitting the appropriate form on amonthly basis and as they are submitted, according to the adoptedreimbursement schedule.

[Top]

ARTICLE VII – DIRECTOR and STAFF

The Board of Governors shall have the authority to hire an executiveDirector, and office support, providing that this is determinednecessary by the Board of Governors at a meeting of the Board ofGovernors.

[Top]

ARTICLE VIII – AMENDMENTS

8.1. By-Laws of the Association or any portion or section thereof, canbe amended by any voting member by submitting said amendment in writingat a regular meeting of the Executive Committee where it shall be readand referred to the constitution and by-laws committee which shallstudy the amendment and make a report to the Board. Amendments can onlybe adopted by a two-thirds majority vote of those votes cast at theAnnual meeting. Proxy votes are allowed.
8.2 The consideration of any proposed amendments to the By-Laws, orRules of Order, which have been acted upon by the Executive Committee,shall be an item of business at the annual meeting.
8.3 All amendments, alterations or revisions of any part of thisBy-Laws or Rules of Order shall take effect upon their adoption by themeeting, unless otherwise specified in the amendment.
8.4 All business meetings of the Association shall be conducted inaccordance with Robert's Rules of Order and direction from Article X.
[Top]

ARTICLE IX – GENDER

The Minnesota State Volunteer Firefighters Association shall notdiscriminate relative to membership and privileges because of sex,race, or national origin and all references in these by laws to onegender shall mean to include both genders.

[Top]

ARTICLE X – RULES OF ORDER

  1. The presiding officer shall preserve order and decorum; all questions of order shall be decided by the presiding officer, after consulting with the Parliamentarian, subject to an appeal to the Association.
  2. Every member, when speaking shall be standing in his/her their place, address the presiding officer, giving their name, place of residence, and organization to which they belong. Same shall be recorded in the minutes. The speaker shall omit personalities and confine themselves to the question under debate.
  3. When two (2) or more members shall rise at once the presiding officer shall name the one who shall speak first.
  4. A member called to order shall immediately sit down, unless permitted to explain by the Chair; if there be no appeal the decision shall be conclusive.
  5. Every member shall vote unless excused by the Association, but no member shall vote on any question in which they shall have a direct, individual or pecuniary interest, and the presiding officer shall only vote in case of a tie.
  6. The ayes and nays shall be taken and entered in the minutes of the Association, if requested by one-fifth of the members present.
  7. All business not provided for in these By-Laws shall be transacted according to "Robert's Parliamentary Rules of Order"
[Top]

ARTICLE XI – INDEMNIFICATION

The Association shallindemnify, to the fullest extent permitted by law and this Article, anyperson who is or was a party or is threatened to be made a party to anythreatened, pending, or completed action, suit, or proceeding (and anyappeal therein), whether civil, criminal, administrative, arbitrative,or investigative and whether or not brought by or on behalf of theAssociation, by reason of the fact that such person is or was anExecutive Board Member, officer, employee or agent of the Association,or is or was serving at the request of the Association as an ExecutiveBoard Member, officer, partn, trustee, employee, or agent ofanother Association, partnership, joint venture, trust, or otherenterprise or as a trustee or administrator under an employee benefitplan, or arising out of such party's activities in any of the foregoingcapacities, against all liability and litigation expense, includingreasonable attorneys' fees; PROVIDED, HOWEVER, that the Associationshall not indemnify any such person against liability or expenseincurred on account of such person's activities which were at the timetaken known or believed by such person to be clearly in conflict withthe best interests of the Association or if such person received animproper personal benefit from such activities.

The Association likewise shallindemnify any such person for all reasonable costs and expenses(including attorneys' fees) incurred by such person in connection withthe enforcement of such person's right to indemnification grantedherein.

The Association shall pay allexpenses incurred by any claimant hereunder in defending a civil orcriminal action, suit, or proceeding as set forth above in advance ofthe final disposition of such action, suit, or proceeding upon receiptof and undertaking by or on behalf of such claimant to repay suchamount unless it ultimately shall be determined that such claimant isentitled to be indemnified by the Association against such expenses.

The Executive Board of theAssociation shall take all such action as may be necessary andappropriate to authorize the Association to pay the indemnificationrequired by this Bylaw, including without limitation, (a) adetermination by a majority vote of disinterested directors (i) thatthe activities giving rise to the liability or expense for whichindemnification is requested were not, at the time taken, known orbelieved by the person requesting indemnification to be clearly inconflict with the best interests of the Association and (ii) that theperson requesting indemnification did not receive an improper personalbenefit from the activities giving rise to the liability or expense forwhich indemnification is requested, and (b) to the extent needed,giving notice to the members of the Association.

Any person who at any timeafter the adoption of this Bylaw serves or has served in any of theaforesaid capacities for or on behalf of the Association shall bedeemed to be doing or to have done so in reliance upon, and asconsideration for, the right of indemnification provided herein.

Such right shall inure to thebenefit of the legal representatives of any such person and shall notbe exclusive of any other rights to which such person may be entitledapart from the provision of this Bylaw.

[Top]

ARTICLE XII – LIQUIDATION AND DISSOLUTION

The articles of incorporation provide that the remaining property ofthe Association shall, in the course of liquidation and dissolution, betransferred to a volunteer firefighter foundation in Minnesota.
(C) 2007 Minnesota State Volunteer Firefighters Association (MSVFA)

Revision History January14,2008
  • Added the word “information” to section 1.4 of the Mission Objectives sentence #1
  • Added a revision history section to the Bylaws