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National Council of 56 Clubs
Connecting Collectors to Clubs and Clubs to Each Other

NCC Constitution & Bylaws

NATIONAL COUNCIL OF 56 CLUBS

(An independent not for profit organization of Department 56 Collector Clubs with a strategic alliance with Department 56.)


CONSTITUTION and BYLAWS

Amended November 15, 2005

ARTICLE ONE: NAME OF ORGANIZATION

The name of this organization shall be the National Council of 56 Clubs, hereinafter referred to as the NCC.

ARTICLE TWO: PURPOSE


The purpose of the NCC shall be to promote Department 56 Member Clubs, cultivate cooperation among Member Clubs, facilitate the exchange of information between Member Clubs, assist in the formation of new Clubs, and stimulate the presentation of collector events and gatherings.


ARTICLE THREE: MEMBERSHIP

SECTION 1.

There shall be three categories of Membership: Club, Associate and Honorary.

  1. Club Membership is available to all Clubs that are organized for the purpose of promoting an interest in collecting Department 56 houses and collectibles.

  2. Associate Membership is available to retailers, secondary dealers, newsletter editors, and others who engage or operate in any enterprise related to Department 56 that is for commercial or personal profit.  Associate Members have no vote, and may not be elected or appointed to a position in the NCC.

  3. Honorary membership may be granted to those persons who have exhibited outstanding support or contributions to the NCC.  They shall have no vote and may not be elected or appointed to a position in the NCC.  They shall be exempt from dues.
SECTION 2.

Qualifications.
  1. All Memberships are subject to approval by the Board of Directors, hereinafter referred to as the Board, and are not transferable.

  2. To apply for membership, Clubs shall submit a Board approved application containing an agreement to abide by the NCC Purpose, the Bylaws, and any special rules or amendments adopted by the NCC thereafter.

  3. Member Clubs must be independent, self governing Collectors' Clubs with:

    1. duly elected officers.

    2. bylaws compatible with those of the NCC.

    3. at least ten (10) dues paying members.

    4. at least four (4) meetings per year.

  4. Clubs that are sponsored but meet requirements under (2) above may be approved as Member Clubs, hereinafter referred to as Clubs.

ARTICLE FOUR: DUES

SECTION 1.

Annual Club Membership dues shall be determined by vote of the Board.

SECTION 2.

Annual Associate Membership dues shall be $ 100.

SECTION 3.

The fiscal membership year shall be from January 1 through December 31. Dues shall be payable January 1 and considered delinquent if not paid by March 1, with Membership forfeited and Club privileges denied until dues are current, which dues shall include delinquent dues, not to exceed one year.

SECTION 4.

New Clubs joining after January shall have their dues pro-rated on a monthly basis until the following January.

ARTICLE FIVE: OFFICERS


SECTION 1.

Officers for the National Council of 56 Clubs shall consist of a President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. These four officers and the Department 56 Representative's shall comprise the Executive Board.

SECTION 2.

Eligibility
  1. An officer shall have been an NCC member for at least two years prior to election to office.

  2. Co-Presidents are permissible.

  3. No member may serve in more than one office at a time.

SECTION 3.

Duties
  1. The President shall be the Chief Executive Officer and official representative of the NCC and shall:

    1. Promote the purpose of the NCC.

    2. Preside at meetings of the Board.

    3. With approval of the Board, within 30 days of taking office, appoint all Standing Committees.

    4. Appoint all Special Committees.

    5. Appoint a committee of three NCC Member Club members to audit the NCC books and report to the Board.

    6. Serve as ex officio member of all committees.

    7. Supervise official publications of the NCC.

    8. Set the date and place of the mid-term meeting of the Board of Directors.

    9. With the approval of the Executive Board, appoint an NCC member to fill the vacancy of a Regional Representative until the next Regional meeting at which members shall elect a Representative to fill the unexpired portion of the term of office.

    10. Sign NCC contracts.

    11. Act as liaison between the NCC and Department 56, Inc.

  2. The Vice President shall:

    1. Upon the request of the President, assist in the performance of the duties of President.

    2. In the absence or inability of the President to serve, perform the duties of President.

    3. Perform such duties as assigned by the Executive Board.

    4. Upon resignation or death of the President, assume the duties of the President for the remainder of the term of office.

  3. The Secretary shall:

    1. Keep records of all documents, except financial, related to the NCC. This shall include but not be limited to copies of publications, flyers, and the minutes of the meetings of the Board.

    2. Have notice issued of all meetings of the Executive Board and Board of Directors.

    3. Sign contracts with written approval of the President.

  4. The Treasurer shall:

    1. Keep and provide records of all money of the NCC.

    2. Provide quarterly reports of funds to the Board.

    3. Pay bills incurred by or for the NCC upon presentation of valid bills or receipts, if authorized under the budget.

    4. Submit the books to the Auditing Committee.

    5. Present an annual budget.

    6. Perform such other duties as assigned by the Executive Board.

    7. File necessary tax forms.

ARTICLE SIX: THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS


SECTION 1.

The Board of Directors, herein called the Board, shall be comprised of the Executive Board plus one elected representative from each Region.

  1. Composition - the Members of the Board shall be:
    1. The President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Department 56 Representative/s (Executive Board).

    2. The Regional Representatives.

    3. The immediate past President shall be ex officio member but shall have no vote.

  2. Duties - The Board shall:
    1. Conduct the business of the NCC between meetings.

    2. Report to Member Clubs.

    3. Adopt policies and rules for the NCC according to its rules and bylaws.

    4. Select the location for the official office and address of the NCC.

    5. Approve the bank or banks for the deposit of NCC money.

    6. Review the Quarterly Reports presented by the Treasurer.

    7. Approve a membership form.

    8. Approve reinstatement and expulsion requests.

    9. Consider applications for Member Clubs outside the United States.

    10. Consider annual meeting site proposals.

    11. Set the dates of the annual meeting/convention.

    12. Approve official logos, designs, and themes for the convention/annual meeting.

    13. Consider and adopt a budget for the annual meeting.

    14. Consider and approve use of the NCC logo.

    15. Consider approval of appointments to Standing Committees.

    16. Consider approval of appointments to fill vacancies in the offices of elected officers or Regional Representatives.

    17. Consider causes for expulsion of members.

  3. Meetings:
    1. The Board shall meet at least three times a year.
      1. Post-convention/Annual Meeting: In the city following the close of the conference.

      2. Midterm: At a place and time between, February and May, selected by the President.

      3. Pre-convention/Annual Meeting: In the city on the day previous to the conference.

      4. At least 15 days' advance notice of the Midterm and special meetings shall be given all members of the Board.

    2. Meetings shall be held at other times when deemed necessary by the President or any three members of the Board.

    3. The Board may conduct business by U.S. mail, the Internet, or conference telephone and a report of action taken in this manner shall be verified and presented in the minutes of the next meeting.

    4. A quorum shall be a majority of the members entitled to vote.

ARTICLE SEVEN: REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVES


SECTION 1.

The Country shall be divided into ten (10) Regions. Each Region shall elect a Regional Representative to the NCC from among all current or former Club Representatives residing in that Region. In the case when there is a not a Club Representative or a former Club Representative that is eligible and willing to accept the position, then the position can be filled with a current or former club officer residing in that region. Any former Club Representative or club officer must be a current member of a NCC member club.

  1. Regional Representatives shall hold elections every two years, with even numbered Regions holding elections in even numbered years, and odd numbered Regions holding elections in odd numbered years. Elections shall take place no later than September 30 of the year, and the new Representative shall assume office on January 1.

  2. The electors shall be Club Representatives from that Region. Elections shall be by ballot and majority vote shall elect. When there is only one candidate the President shall dispense with the ballot and declare the nominee elected.

  3. The Regional Representative shall communicate regularly with all Club Representatives in that Region, be informed of Club activities, assist in keeping Clubs informed of NCC activities, encourage Club Representatives to share information with their Club and the NCC, and help arrange for the NCC presence at events and gatherings in that Region.

  4. If a Regional Representative also holds the position of Club Representative during a NCC election requiring a vote by the NCC member clubs, the Club President will stand in for the Club Representative and represent the club in the voting procedure. If the Club Representative and the Club President is the same person, then the Club Vice-President shall represent the Club for this voting procedure.

  5. When a vacancy occurs, the President shall appoint a Regional Representative from that Region to fill that vacancy until the next scheduled elections.

SECTION 2.
  1. The U.S. geographic boundaries of the Regions shall be:

      • Region 1 - Maine, Vermont, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Connecticut.

      • Region 2 - Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland, Washington D.C., New Jersey and Delaware.

      • Region 3 - Tennessee, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia and North Carolina.

      • Region 4 - Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia and South Carolina.

      • Region 5 - Illinois, Michigan, Indiana and Ohio.

      • Region 6 - North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa and Wisconsin.

      • Region 7 - Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas and Missouri.

      • Region 8 - New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana.

      • Region 9 - Alaska, Washington, Idaho, Oregon and Montana.

      • Region 10 - California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona and Hawaii.

  2. The Canadian Provinces shall be matched with/attached to the following Regions:

      • Region 1 - Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, Labrador, Nova Scotia Quebec and New Brunswick.

      • Region 2 - Ontario.

      • Region 6 - Manitoba.

      • Region 9 - British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan

  3. Other Clubs located outside the boundaries of the Continental United States shall be included in the Region geographically closest to that Club.

SECTION 3.

Term of Office

  1. No member may serve in the same position for more than two consecutive terms, EXCEPT when a member has been appointed to fill an unexpired term that is less than one-half of the normal term remaining, in which case the member may stand for election for an additional term to complete what would otherwise be his second consecutive term. (Note: For counting purposes, one day is sufficient to be considered "less than one-half of the normal term of office."

ARTICLE EIGHT: CLUB REPRESENTATIVES / MEMBER CLUBS SECTION

SECTION 1.

  1. Each Club shall select one member to serve as Club Representative to the NCC.

  2. If a Club Representative serves as a Regional Representative concurrently, he/she will not represent the club in NCC election procedures, therefore the club vote in NCC elections will be cast by the Club President.  If the Club Representative and the Club President is the same person, then the Club Vice President will cast the club vote.

SECTION 2.
  1. The Club Representative shall inform Club Members of NCC activities, inform the Regional Representative of Club activities, and shall keep essential communication lines open in order to link with fellow Clubs through the NCC.  Club Representatives shall elect Regional Representatives every two years from among Club Representatives in that Region.  In the case when there is not a Club Representative that is eligible and willing to accept the position, then the position can be filled with a club officer residing in that region.

  2. Former Club Representatives within that Region shall also be eligible for election to the Regional Representative position in that Region.  In the event a current or former Club Representative is not eligible or willing to accept the position, then the position can be filled with a current or former club officer.

  3. Club Representatives shall support NCC Hospitality Rooms and activities at events in their Region where feasible, and encourage/promote Associate membership support for the NCC.

ARTICLE NINE: THE ADVISORY COUNCIL



With the approval of the Board, the President shall appoint an Advisory Council consisting of Standing or Special Committees to serve as needed for the smooth functioning of the NCC. Members of the Advisory Council shall have no vote.

ARTICLE TEN: FINANCES


SECTION 1.

The fiscal year shall be January I to December 31. The Board shall approve all expenditures and budgetary appropriations.

SECTION 2.

The checking account shall require one signature, either that of the President or the Treasurer, for amounts less than $500. Expenditures greater than $500 require signatures of both officers.

SECTION 3.

All NCC bank accounts shall be audited annually by the Audit Committee, and a report made available to all Member Clubs following the next Board meeting.

SECTION 4.

Club Representatives or Board Members may reasonably request an audit of the NCC's financial records. The request must be in writing to the Board and the audit must be available to all Clubs following the next Board meeting.

SECTION 5.

The President shall sign all contracts or give written approval for the Secretary to sign.


ARTICLE ELEVEN: MEMBERSHIP MEETINGS


Annual meetings or Conventions if held, shall be held on dates and at sites selected by the Board for the purpose of electing officers, or receiving reports or conducting any business that may come before it.

ARTICLE TWELVE: ELECTIONS


SECTION 1.

Nominations

  1. The President shall appoint a Nominating Committee by May 1 to present a slate of eligible candidates for election to the Executive Board, with elections to be held no later than September 30. A Nominating Committee member is ineligible to run for office. A nominee shall have been a member of a Club for two years before nomination.

  2. A Club, having been notified by May 1, may submit a letter through the Club Representative to the Nominating Committee within thirty (30) days, stating the member's name, the office sought, a brief profile, and the member's qualifications for the office sought. These nominee profiles, and ballots if necessary, shall be sent to the membership 60 days prior to the elections.

SECTION 2.

Election Procedures

  1. The election of officers shall be by ballot, either through U.S. Mail, E-Mail or at the discretion of the Board. A majority vote shall elect. In the event of no majority or plurality vote, there shall be a run-off vote between the tied candidates.

  2. When there is only one candidate the President shall dispense with the ballot and declare the nominee elected. No individual may vote in more than one capacity.

  3. The voting body shall be the following:

    1. The four officers of the Board.

    2. One Representative from each Region.

    3. One Representative from each Club. If the Club Representative is also serving in the position of Regional Representative the Club President will represent the club for this voting procedure.  If the Club Representative and the Club President are the same person, then the Club Vice-President will represent the Club for this voting procedure.

SECTION 3.

Term of Office

  1. The term of office shall be two years, commencing on January I following the election.

  2. No member may serve in the same position for more than two consecutive terms, except when a member has been appointed to fill an unexpired term that is less than one-half of the normal term remaining, in which case the member may stand for election for an additional term to complete what would otherwise be his second consecutive term. (For counting purposes, one day is sufficient to be considered less than one-half of the normal term of office.>

  3. The Board by majority vote may declare the position of any Board Member vacant because of ineffective performance of duty.

  4. A vacancy in a Board position shall be filled by Presidential appointment until the next election with the approval of the Board.

ARTICLE THIRTEEN: ETHICS


SECTION 1.

No individual (or immediate family member, or one perceived to be an immediate family member, or partner) may be nominated or elected or appointed to represent the NCC who may profit from, or advance his or her business through a commercial activity which is in any way related to the Department 56 product line or related activity.

SECTION 2.

An Ethics Committee shall be appointed by the President when necessary to investigate and review complaints against Member Clubs, individual Representatives or Board Members, or others, and report the findings to the Board.

SECTION 3.

Expulsion of any Member Club or individual Representative or Board Member or others, shall be by majority vote of the Board.


ARTICLE FOURTEEN: QUORUMS


A Quorum for the Board is a majority of eligible voters. A Quorum for membership meetings is the members present.

ARTICLE FIFTEEN: AMENDMENTS


The Bylaws may be amended at any time by majority vote of the Board, provided that notice of the proposal is submitted in writing thirty (30) days prior to the vote

ARTICLE SIXTEEN: DISSOLUTION


In the case of dissolution of the National Council of 56 Clubs, after all legal debts have been paid, any remaining assets/funds shall be donated to a national charitable organization selected by the Board.