Constitution and By-laws
Prairie Dog Amateur Radio Club – W0OJY
Yankton, Vermillion and Springfield, SD Area – Southeast SD and Northeast NE
Effective November 14, 2023
I. PREAMBLE: The Prairie Dog Amateur Radio Club (hereafter referred to as the PDARC) is a non-profit corporation organized under the laws of the State of South Dakota and its goal is to maintain affiliation with the Amateur Radio Relay League (ARRL). The PDARC primarily draws its members from southeast South Dakota, northeast Nebraska, and northwest Iowa. It shall be our primary purpose to further the Amateur Radio Service through club programs, activities, and education in order to promote radio knowledge, camaraderie, and individual operating efficiency of our members. Further, it shall be our purpose to support the welfare of the communities we serve through public service by providing radio communications for emergency situations and public events, and through providing information, training, and assistance to individuals with an interest in Amateur Radio Service.
II. PDARC CONSTITUTION:
ARTICLE 1 – Membership and Dues
- SECTION 1: Any person who states an interest in amateur radio is eligible for membership. Membership and dues requirements are stated in the club by-laws Section II.
- SECTION 2: Life membership is available in the PDARC. The requirements for life membership are stated in the club by-laws.
- SECTION 3: Voting members are all members holding valid Amateur Radio licenses. Life members are full voting members, but are not counted in the number of members needed for a quorum.
- SECTION 4: A member charged with conduct unbecoming the PDARC may be expelled from the membership by a two-thirds vote of the voting membership (Article 1, Section 3) provided the Executive Committee has found the charges are sustained by a thorough investigation. Causes for expelling a member are stated in the by-laws.
ARTICLE II – Officers and W0OJY Trustee
- SECTION 1: The officers of the organization shall consist of the President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer. These officers shall constitute the Executive Committee. All officers must be PDARC members holding a valid Amateur Radio license. The elections will be held at the September meeting and officers will be installed the following January. All officers are required to turn over the records of their office to their successor at the January meeting.
- SECTION 2: The President shall preside at all meetings of the PDARC and the Executive Committee. The President shall follow the Constitution and by-laws of the PDARC and rule on points of order. The President in consultation with the Executive Committee shall call special meetings if needed. The President will make appointments to Special Interest committees and perform the normal duties of the office of President.
- SECTION 3: The Vice-President shall assume the office and duties of the President during that individuals’ absence. In the event of a vacancy among the officers, the Vice-President shall perform the duties of that office until a special election can be held.
- SECTION 4: The Secretary shall keep minutes of all meetings. These minutes should be maintained as a permanent record and the minutes should also be provided to the members via e-mail before the next meeting. The Secretary should maintain a record of attendance and be able to determine if a quorum is present. The Secretary should notify members of club meetings, take care of club correspondence, maintain the historical records of the club and perform the normal duties of the office of Secretary. In cases where both the President and Vice-President are not present, the Secretary shall conduct the meeting followed by the Treasurer.
- SECTION 5: The Treasurer shall receive applications for membership and maintain a current membership list to be shared with the Secretary for purposes of determining a quorum. The Treasurer should deposit all monies received in the Bank approved by the Executive Committee. The Treasurer should keep a record of all monies received and expended and report such to the membership at the monthly meeting to be approved. The Treasurer, in conjunction with the W0OJY trustee, shall keep an inventory list of all physical asserts of the PDARC such as radio equipment, etc. The Treasurer shall keep segregated accounting records for special funds such as the Repeater Committee fund. These shall be separated from the general PDARC treasury and reported as such in the monthly Treasurers report. The Treasurer shall provide a year-end summary to be reviewed by the Executive Committee.
- SECTION 6: The officers of the club shall be elected for a term of two years at the September meeting with installation the following January. The two-year terms shall be staggered with the President and Treasurer being elected one year and the Vice-President and Secretary the next year and alternating back and forth. There must be a quorum present (Article 1, Section 3).
A person may not hold the office of President for more than two terms. After a period of two years of not serving as President, that person may be re-elected as President.
- SECTION 7: The Executive Committee will serve as the Nominating Committee for the PDARC to select candidates for the PDARC offices. Candidates shall be posted on the PDARC e-mail reflector at least two weeks prior to the election and are to be presented to the PDARC by the Nominating Committee at the regular meeting in September. Other candidates may be nominated from the floor at the September meeting.
- SECTION 8: Office vacancies can be by resignation or by the Executive Committee due to non-performance of duties. A special election for a vacant office will be announced at a meeting and the election may be held at the next regular meeting. The candidate for the vacant office will be presented by the Executive Committee. Other candidates may be nominated from the floor.
- SECTION 9: An officer may be removed by a two-thirds vote of the voting members (Article 1, Section 3). The process is initiated by a quorum of members submitting a petition to the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee should do a thorough investigation and issue a report at the next regular meeting. If cause is found, the vote to remove the officer will be publicized and held at the next regular meeting.
- SECTION 10: The W0OJY trustee shall be a member of the PDARC Repeater Committee. The trustee shall be responsible for renewing the W0OJY license. The trustee may also be the point of contact for our non-profit corporate status and shall work with the Secretary and Treasurer to ensure the PDARC makes timely payments and timely filing of the necessary documents.
ARTICLE III – Meetings
- SECTION 1: The regular meetings of the PDARC shall be held monthly. During some months the regular meeting may be replaced with the Christmas Party and/or Summer Picnic. These are typically December for the Christmas Party and August for the Summer Picnic. A short business meeting may be held at the Christmas Party and the Summer Picnic.
If decided by the Executive Committee, the place, day and time of the meeting may be changed or the meeting cancelled. In this event, the membership will be notified by e-mail, personal contact, or when applicable by minutes of the previous meeting. Notification of such changes shall be sent ten (10) days prior to the original schedule if possible.
- SECTION 2: Not less than one-fourth of the voting membership (Article 1, Section 3) shall be considered a quorum at a regular, special, or emergency meeting.
- SECTION 3: Roberts Rules of Order shall be used as a reference when questions of parliamentary procedure arise.
- SECTION 4: Emergency or special meetings may be called by the Executive Committee. In these events, the membership must be notified via electronic means or by personal contact. Notification of such changes shall be sent ten (10) days prior to the special meeting date if possible.
- SECTION 5: Special interest meetings for such purposes as licensing classes, technical information meetings, and other special interest meetings may be held by the PDARC provided the initial such meeting is approved by the Executive Committee. These meetings shall not include business meetings.
ARTICLE IV – Repeater Committee
The PDARC membership may create and maintain a Repeater Committee with a majority vote of the membership. The Repeater Committee shall be subject to the jurisdiction of the PDARC membership. The by-laws define the make-up, duties, and responsibilities of the Repeater Committee.
ARTICLE V – Special Interest Committees
Special Interest Committees of PDARC may be created for specific purposes. These committees may be permanent or dedicated to a specific event or events. More details on these committees are contained within the bylaws.
Any Special Interest Committee, permanent or otherwise, shall be subject to the overall jurisdiction of the PDARC.
ARTICLE VI – Expenditure of Funds
Regulations regarding expenditure of money are stated in the PDARC by-laws Section VI.
ARTICLE VII – Amendments
- SECTION 1: The PDARC Constitution may only be amended after a proposed amendment is presented at a regular meeting of the PDARC and is then voted on at the next regular meeting. The Constitution can only be amended if passed by a two-thirds majority approval of the total voting membership (Article 1, Section 3). The proposed amendment must be publicized to the membership at least two weeks prior to the meeting where the amendment will be voted on. Members may vote as provided in Article VII, Section 2 of the Constitution.
- SECTION 2: Absentee ballots must be initiated by the PDARC Executive Committee. Absentee ballots of all voting members must be presented at the start of the meeting dealing with the issue in question. Absentee ballots will be sent via electronic means to all voting members and are only available for amendments to the Constitution, By-laws, or removal of an officer or member.
A person designated by the Executive Committee shall send out absentee ballots upon the direction of the Executive Committee. A record shall be kept of members to whom such ballots were sent and returned. The absentee ballot will show the issue to be voted upon and define how to vote yes or no. PDARC e-mail will be used as the primary method of sending absentee ballots. In the event a member does not use e-mail, a ballot will be sent to the member and the member will return the ballot in the plain sealed envelope inside another sealed envelope with the signature and call sign on the outside of that envelope. A minimum of three (3) members of the Executive Committee shall verify and count these votes.
III. PDARC BY-LAWS:
ARTICLE I: Amending By-Laws
The PDARC By-Laws may be amended only after the proposed amendment is presented at a regular meeting of the PDARC and then voted on at the next regular meeting. The By-Laws can only be amended if passed by a simple majority of the total voting membership (Constitution, Article 1, Section 3). The proposed amendment must be publicized to the membership at least two weeks prior to the meeting where the amendment will be voted on. Members may vote as provided in Article VII, Section 2 of the Constitution.
ARTICLE II: Membership and Dues
- SECTION 1: New members must fill out an application form for membership and present it along with the appropriate dues. The application will be reviewed by the Executive Committee.
- SECTION 2: Membership dues shall be $30.00 per year for an individual membership. A half year membership is available after July 1 for $15.00. A family membership, including spouse and dependent children, is available for $35.00 per year. A half-year family membership is available after July 1 for $17.50.
- SECTION 3: An individual life membership is available for $500.00. Membership for spouse and/or dependent family members of a life member are available for $5.00 per person per year.
- SECTION 4: Dues are payable on or before the January meeting. Non-members who have not paid their dues are not eligible to make motions or to vote. Anyone who pays their dues as recorded by the club instantly becomes a member. Any previous year member has until March 15 to pay current dues before becoming inactive.
- SECTION 5: PDARC members who are not licensed amateurs may participate fully in all activities but may not hold office or vote.
ARTICLE III: Quorum
A Quorum is defined in Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution. A quorum is necessary for the PDARC to conduct business.
ARTICLE IV: Meetings
- SECTION 1: The PDARC regular meetings will be held monthly. The meeting will begin at 7:00 PM on the second Tuesday of every month.
The meeting information will be announced via electronic means to members who have provided their e-mail addresses.
- SECTION 2: Special Interest Committee meetings will be held as announced via electronic means. Special Interest meeting information may vary based on the wishes of those participating in the Special Interest Committee which may work out their own notification system.
- SECTION 3: The regular meetings should be comprised of approximately one-third business, one-third programs, and one-third social time and the meetings should run from 7:00 PM to approximately 9:00 PM. This is discussed more in detail in the Commentary, Article 1.
ARTICLE V: Expenditure of Funds
Expenditures may be approved by a majority vote of the membership at any meeting provided a quorum is present. In case of an emergency need, the Executive Committee may spend up to $300.00 from the general fund or $500 from the repeater fund between meetings. Liability insurance premiums will be paid even if the premium exceeds $300.00. Emergency need expenditures shall be reported at the next meeting.
ARTICLE VI: Conduct Unbecoming a Member
Conduct unbecoming a member shall be defined as any act or acts committed by a member of PDARC such as carelessly destroying or seriously damaging any PDARC property, use of PDARC monies for personal purposes without the approval of the voting membership or operation of a radio transmitter in such a manner as to bring disfavor on amateur radio as a whole or upon the PDARC as an organization. A member may be expelled per the procedure defined in the Constitution, Article 1, Section 4.
ARTICLE VII: Repeater Committee
- SECTION 1: The membership may vote to create a Repeater Committee. The Repeater Committee may, if approved by the membership, solicit and accept funds to be used only for repeaters and repeater expenses. The Repeater Committee may also solicit the donation of repeater equipment. All repeater funds shall be segregated in the PDARC treasury, and shall be included in the monthly Treasurer’s report. All repeater equipment shall be property of PDARC and listed on the PDARC Equipment Inventory list. The Executive Committee shall make the appointments to the Repeater Committee each year at the February meeting or as vacancies arise. The Repeater Committee shall consist of three to five PDARC voting members; one of which shall be the W0OJY trustee. The W0OJY trustee shall assist the Treasurer in creating and maintaining a list of all PDARC inventory including the repeater equipment.
- SECTION 2: The Repeater Committee meetings will be open to all club members. Dates and times will be published via electronic means
- SECTION 3: The Repeater Committee shall provide a written report at every regular PDARC meeting provided there is activity to be reported. This report shall include all monies spent, any equipment secured for the PDARC repeaters, and any major actions being considered. The Repeater Committee may spend up to $300.00 from the repeater fund between meetings. Expenditures greater than $300.00 require approval by the Executive Committee.
ARTICLE VIII: Special Interest Committees
The President has the power to appoint Special Interest Committees or the membership may vote to create them. All PDARC Special Interest Committees are under the jurisdiction of PDARC. Each committee shall report activity as necessary at regular PDARC meetings.
ARTICLE I: Meeting Length Guidelines
The business meeting should, in general, last no longer than 30 minutes with social and presentation time to follow. The meeting ends at 9:00 PM, and it is expected that the facility will be cleared shortly thereafter.
ARTICLE II: Presentation
All meetings, if possible, shall include a presentation related to Amateur Radio. This presentation may be given by members or by invited guests.
ARTICLE III: Special Interest Committees
In addition to the Repeater Committee, the PDARC has traditionally had the following Special Interest Committees:
- VE Testing
- Field Day
- Fund Raising
- Niobrara Rendezvous
- Special event committees
- SD QSO Party
- Summer Picnic
- Christmas Party
As stated in the Constitution, the President may appoint all committees except the Repeater Committee. The membership may also create a committee provided a motion is passed by a majority at a meeting; however, it is recommended that the President in conjunction with the Executive Committee create the committees.
ARTICLE IV: Amendments to Commentary
Commentaries may be edited or added by the Executive Committee