Ontario Fire Chiefs Administrative Assistant Association
Prepared by: Andrea Ball, Township of King, 9/16/2012 - A download copy is available below.
Table of Contents
1. Association Aims & Objectives
6. Dues and Fees
8. Election and Term
11. Remuneration of Executive
12. Travel and Other Expenses
14. Survey & Inquiries
16. Membership contact information
19. Rules of Order
21. Error or Omission in Notice
22. Books and Records
23. Fiscal Year
25. Professional Conduct
26. Amendment of Constitution
The goals of the Association are to enhance the position of the Administrative Assistant to the Fire Chief by:
a. Professional Development
b. Improved Networking
The logo, a design whereof is placed on each official document, shall be the executive seal of the Association.
In this by-law and all other by-laws of the Association, unless the context otherwise requires, words importing the singular number or the masculine gender shall include the plural number or the feminine gender, as the case may be, and vice versa, and references
to persons shall include firms and Associations.
The affairs of the Association shall be managed by the Executive who may exercise all such powers and do all such acts and things as may be exercised or done by the Association that are not by the bylaws or any special resolution of the Association or by statute expressly directed or required to be done in some other manner.
Definition: A member in good standing is considered to be a member who has paid their annual dues in full.
Member - Must be Administrative Assistants to the Fire Chief (or any such related position/title), or work within the Office of the Fire Chief for their department, within the Province of Ontario and are not members of a Firefighter’s Union. Members must be in good standing and will be included in all activities at the annual educational conference. Members will have voting rights at the AGM and will also have access to the membership link on the O.F.C.A.A.A. portion of the O.A.F.C. website and association surveys. Up to two persons per department may apply for membership. In this situation, a letter from the Fire Chief or delegate must be provided clearly stating their positions with the department. Application for membership shall be by form as prescribed by the Executive.
Associate Member - Includes grandfathered* memberships who are in good standing and will be included in all activities at the annual educational conference. They shall have voting rights at the A.G.M.; however, they will not be permitted to hold office of the Executive, nor will they have access to the membership login portion of the OFCAAA
pages on OAFC website, nor be included in association surveys.
*Grandfathered persons eligible are the result of amalgamation and/or the discontinuation of the position held and no longer hold the title relating to Assistant to the Fire Chief. They must also be members in good standing of the Ontario Fire Chiefs Administrative Assistant Association; these members will be ‘grandfathered’ in and are permitted to maintain their membership and attend O.F.C.A.A.A. annual seminars and any other related functions. A grandfathered member is still required to pay annual dues. Retired/Lifetime Member: Persons eligible for membership as Retired/Lifetime members shall be in good standing with more than 10 years in the Association and will be exempt from dues. Members in good standing with less than 10 years in the Association, who retire, shall continue to pay their dues until years are achieved whereupon they become lifetime members. They shall have voting rights at the A.G.M.; however, they will be excluded from access to the membership link on the O.A.F.C. website and association surveys. Past Member: A member of the Association who has left their position as an Administrative Assistant to the Fire Chief, or any such related position or title, is permitted to attend the Saturday Evening social activity of the annual seminar only.
O.A.F.C. Member: Up to two Administrative Assistants from the OAFC are permitted to attend as guests to the Saturday Educational portion of the annual seminar.
Removal of Membership Privileges: The President, acting under the authority of the Executive may at any time revoke the membership of any member
Definition: A member in good standing is considered to be a member who has paid their annual dues in full.
Members of the Association, other than Retired, Past and O.A.F.C. members, shall pay annual fees. Current rate is $45.00 if paid by March 31st of the Membership year and $55.00 any time thereafter. All membership fees shall be paid in advance of the Annual Seminar. Any members delinquent in the payment of fees on the date of the Annual Meeting will not be entitled to vote on matters raised at the meeting. Any members delinquent in the payment of fees subsequent to the Annual General Meeting shall have their member privileges revoked and their membership suspended.
The application for membership shall be by form as prescribed by the Executive.
The affairs of the Association shall be managed by 3 Executive Members consisting of President, Vice-President and Secretary/Treasurer.
President: The President shall be elected by the membership for a two-year term and shall be accountable to the membership on all issues. The President will organize the Annual Educational Seminar with the assistance of the Vice-President and the Secretary/Treasurer, obtaining speakers and in general to assist in the overall success of the seminar. In order to hold position of President, a member must have attended a minimum of three O.F.C.A.A.A. annual Educational Seminars.
Vice-President: The Vice-President shall be elected by the membership for a two-year term to assist the President. They are also responsible for maintaining the Membership Directory, tracking individual’s years of membership with the Association and ensuring the certificates are distributed on a yearly basis at the Annual conference.
Secretary/Treasurer: The Secretary/Treasurer shall be elected by the membership for a two-year term and, under the direction of the President shall handle all financial matters incurred by the Association, including but not limited to Membership fees and costs associated with the Annual Seminar. They are also responsible to keep the membership list updated and provide a welcome package to new members.
The above committee is for a two-year term, but to be reviewed annually in the event that a two-year term is not possible. Election will take place at the Annual General Meeting each year on an as needed basis. In order to hold any position on the Executive, a member must have attended a minimum of three O.F.C.A.A.A. annual Educational Seminars. Nominated individuals may choose to accept or decline the nomination. In the event that the nomination is accepted and there is more than one standing nomination for the same position, the members will cast a private vote which will be counted in observation by two current members of the Executive. Votes will not be permitted by proxy if the member is unable to attend the Annual General Meeting; members must be present in order to cast a vote.
Vacancies on the Executive prior to the Annual General meeting, however caused, may be filled by a voting process via email conducted by an existing member of the Executive.
Welcoming Committee: Responsible for sending information to new members and welcoming them on the Friday of the Annual Seminar weekend at the Ontario Fire College. This ‘Committee’ can consist of one active member whether elected or they may
volunteer for the position.
Recognition/Bereavement Committee: Responsible for sending cards or applicable donation on behalf of the Association. This ‘Committee’ can consist of one active member whether elected or they may volunteer for the position. In the event of the passing of an active, retired, grandfathered or OAFC member a donation in the amount of $75.00 shall be made to Camp BUCKO on behalf of the deceased member in addition to a card sent
the members family.
The Executive nor members shall receive no remuneration for acting as such.
The Treasurer is authorized to pay such reasonable travel and other expenses of Executive members as are approved by the Executive and in accordance with policies for payment of expenditures approved by the Executive.
Annual General Meeting: The Annual General Meeting of the members of the Association shall be held at the Ontario Fire College during the third weekend of September each year, on the Sunday of such and shall commence at 0800 HRS. At least thirty days’ notice shall be given to the membership of such dates and places as may be designated for holding the Annual General Meeting. Such notice may be given in person, by telephone, or by mail, facsimile transmission or electronic mail sent to the member’s last known address. The members may consider and transact any business either special or general without any notice thereof at any meeting of the members. The Executive shall bring forth a President’s report, Vice-President’s report and the Treasurer’s report. Any committee may also present a report for the current membership year. A general meeting shall be held once a year in conjunction with the Educational Seminar. Whenever possible, with the permission of the Fire Marshal of Ontario and the Principal of the Ontario Fire College, meetings shall take place at the Ontario Fire College. Meetings shall be informal and under the discretionary control of the President. The method of resolving issues and problems shall be based upon the utilization of the group participation and
The following guidelines and expectations establish a criteria for participation in the discussion of the issues at all meetings of the Association:
- Each member is expected to offer opinions and seek the opinions of others.
- Initiate discussion and contribute to developing ideas and concepts to further the knowledge for self-improvement, improved networking and professional development.
- Respect must be shown for the views of other members by listening to what they have to say.
- Be receptive to new ideas.
- Compromise, evaluate, clarify and deliberate conflicting ideas and viewpoints, to ensure that the best possible solution is attained.
- Maintain confidentiality of the meetings which have taken place, unless otherwise stated.
Executive Meetings: The Executive shall hold a meeting, when deemed necessary, at a location convenient for the current Executive. It is recommended, if possible, to hold two such meetings during the calendar year in preparation for the Annual Seminar.
All inquiries (requests for information) are to be sent to the President for distribution. In the event that the President is unavailable to distribute the request, further instructions are to be provided by them and inquiries are then sent by either the Vice-President or Secretary/Treasurer as needed. All surveys & inquiries will be sent to all Active Members of the Association. Results of surveys are to be submitted to the Vice-President for distribution to avoid duplication.
Attendance to the yearly conference is optional and will consist of the approximate schedule:
Friday: 3:00 - 6:00 pm arrive at Ontario Fire College
6:30 pm Opening ceremonies, welcoming, announcements, followed by dinner and group photograph
8:00 pm – Networking
Saturday: 8:30 am - 3:30 pm
Educational Seminars 5:30 pm
Organized social activity
Sunday: 8:00 am Annual General Meeting & Elections
Any variations to this schedule may be made by the current Executive. For the initial registration of the conference, one person per department may register. If at the cutoff date (to be set by Executive in relation to scheduling of events and presentations), the numbers are below the Ontario Fire College accommodation capacity of 78 (seventy-eight), registration will be opened up to any additional (secondary) members.
Cancellation of attendance: A member of the Executive must be notified more than 14 days previous to the start date of the conference to be eligible for a refund (unless planned Saturday evening social event states otherwise), if less than 14 days the member is responsible for payment of both the social event (if signed up for it) and a $20.00 administrative fee. It is at the discretion of the Executive to waive this in certain situations i.e. family emergency etc. Failure to pay the cancellation fee identified above will remove you as a member in good standing with the Association until payment is received in full.
The membership contact information is to be used for Association business only and is not to be distributed to individuals beyond the Association. Any personal distribution of unrelated information is prohibited by members. For any such notices personal in nature it must be forwarded to a member of the Executive for review and will be sent to the membership accordingly or as deemed necessary.
A quorum for the transaction of business at any meeting of the Members shall consist of not less than twenty-five members, provided that in no case can any meeting be held unless there are two members present in person.
All votes at the Annual General Meeting must be made in person and cannot be made by proxy even if advance notice of unable to attend is given. At all meetings of members every question shall be decided by a majority of the votes of the members present in person. Every question shall be decided in the first instance by a show of hands unless any member demands a poll. Upon a show of hands, every member having voting rights shall have one vote, and unless a poll be demanded, a declaration by the President that a resolution has been carried or not carried and an entry to that effect in the minutes of the Association shall be admissible in evidence as prima facie proof of the fact without proof of the number or proportion of the votes accorded in favor of or against such resolution. The demand for a poll may be withdrawn, but if a poll be demanded and not withdrawn the question shall be decided by a majority of votes given by the members present in person and such poll shall be deemed the decision of the Association in general meeting upon the matter in question. In case of equality of votes at any general meeting, whether upon a show of hands or at a poll, the President shall be entitled to a second or casting vote.
In all matters of the meeting procedure not covered in this Constitution, Bourinot’s Rules of Order shall prevail. Notwithstanding the official Rules of Order, General Meetings may adopt procedures and rules of order which are not in conflict with the Constitution. The adoption of specific rules of order or procedure will be effective only on obtaining 2/3 affirmative vote of those Active Members present and voting. These rules will then be the official rules of order for that General Meeting only. These rules may be changed or waived by a vote of 2/3 of the Active Members present and voting.
Whenever notice is required to be given as required under the Constitution and By-Laws, such notice may be given personally or sent by pre-paid post or electronically to the address of the member, at the address that is on the books of the Association. A notice or other such documents that are sent by the Association shall be held to be sent at the time when the notice or documents were placed into a public letter box or post office or
when same is sent by electronic means.
Any member of the Executive may change or cause to be changed the recorded address of any member in accordance with any information believed by him to be reliable.
No error or omission in giving notice of any Annual or General Meeting, or any adjournment meetings, whether Annual or General, of the members of the Association shall invalidate such meeting, or make void any proceedings taken thereat. For the purpose of sending notices to any member, for any meeting or otherwise, the address used shall be his/her last address recorded in the books of the Association.
The Secretary/Treasurer shall be charged with the duty to truly record all resolutions, decisions and other proceedings of the Annual Meetings of the members and meetings of the Executive, and to keep in any place appointed for that purpose the originals of all by-laws and of all minutes of the proceedings of Annual Meetings and of meetings of the Executive.
Unless otherwise ordered by the Executive, the fiscal year of the Association shall terminate
on the 31st day of December each year.
The Secretary/Treasurer shall be responsible for any monies of the Association, for the keeping of accounting records and the preparation of financial statements in such form and in accordance with such procedures as may be required by the Executive.
The Members of the Association accept that the appended Rules of Behaviour provide for a high standard of personal conduct to which our members subscribe and commit to adhere. These rules will be applied understated guidelines to ensure the protection of the rights of any member of the Association whose conduct allegedly violates the said Rules.
The Constitution may be amended at any General Meeting of the members, by a majority vote of the members eligible to vote. Amendments to be made at the General Meeting may be proposed either by resolution of the Executive or by petition of any two Active Members in good standing and submitted to the President not less than sixty days prior to the date of the General Meeting. The Executive shall review any proposed amendments. Notice of such proposed amendments to the Constitution shall be sent to all members not less than thirty days prior to the General Meeting at which such proposed amendment or amendments will be voted on.
Rules of Behaviour
Rule 1: No member of the Association shall commit a criminal offence which brings discredit and/or embarrassment to other members of their profession in the Association.
Rule 2: No member of the Association shall commit any offence or serious misconduct pertaining to the funds and/or property of any fire department.
Rule 3: No member shall be guilty of serious or improper action in the performance of his or her duties that brings discredit and/or embarrassment to other members of the Association.
Rule 4: No member shall participate directly in partisan political activities related to the election of a member of the municipal council by which that member is employed or any other political activity which would impair the member’s impartiality in the performance of any duties.
Rule 5: Members shall resist any encroachment upon any responsibilities which would interfere with the duties or members’ freedom to carry out official policies and handle any problem without discrimination on the basis of principle and justice.
Rule 6: No member shall disclose to others, or use to further personal interests, confidential information acquired in the course of conducting official duties.
Rule 7: No member shall falsify or intentionally misrepresent information in the performance of their official duties, or in connection with their Association membership.
Rule 8: No member shall hold an investment directly or indirectly in any commercial enterprise or engage in any private transaction which creates a conflict with any official duties.
Rule 9: No member shall engage in, solicit, negotiate for or promise to accept private employment or render services for private interests or conduct a private business when such employment, service or business creates a conflict with or impairs proper discharge of any official duties.
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