These are the minutes from the EGM held at Body and Mind Gym, Liverpool on 5th April 2014
Liz Chinn, Juliana Christianson, Stuart Marshall, Caleb McCarthy, Keith McCarthy, Nicholas Murphy, Andrew Thornley, Mavis Thornton
Liz Chinn, the BFNWR Secretary, explained the reason for the change to the constitution – Item 12.ii states that the financial year shall end on 30th June, however the AGM is to convene in May or June each year (Item 10.i), thus the accounts presented at the AGM would be a year out of date, not allowing for accurate and timely decision making. It was proposed that the financial year shall end on 31st May.
The adoption of the amendment to the constitution was then put to the vote. All present voted in favour of the proposal. A proxy vote in favour had already been received from Yvonne Walls.
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The Region shall be known as the North West Region — England Fencing. All references to 'Region' in this constitution shall be taken to imply North West Region –England Fencing.
All laws, bye-laws, regulations and policies of the Region shall comply with the laws, bye-laws, regulations and policies of England Fencing Ltd (EF) or British Fencing Ltd (BF), according to their responsibilities as agreed by these organisations.
The geographical purview of the Region shall be as defined within the England Fencing Regions Articles.
The objectives and activities of the Region shall be to:
Publicise and promote fencing.
Ensure the delivery of such events reasonably expected by England Fencing and set out in the England Fencing Regions Articles.
Provide opportunities to represent the region.
Act as a two way conduit for information between England Fencing / British Fencing and clubs / members.
Encourage clubs to work together towards shared aims.
Be the local representation of England Fencing and support the cooperation of clubs and external local or regional organisations
Promote the safeguarding of children and support England Fencing in its aim to ensure fencing is a safe and enjoyable activity for all.
Ensure proper administration and use of funds and the submission of independently examined accounts annually to the Annual General Meeting of the Region and England Fencing.
Keep proper administrative records, including minutes of all Region committee and Annual General meetings.
Undertake other such duties as England Fencing may from time to time reasonably request.
Provide regional training opportunities for fencers.
Support England Fencing coach, referee, and armourer education.
Provide support with Clubmark.
Provide support with funding applications.
Provide competitive opportunities for new fencers.
Promote best practice in club management and support clubs to meet relevant quality standards.
Any current individual member of British Fencing, including members of Home Countries other than England Fencing, shall be able to affiliate to the Region subject to the rules set out in the England Fencing Regions Articles.
All clubs that meet or train within the geographical purview of the Region shall have the right to register with the Region.
Clubs registered with the Region will:
Be on the Region's mailing list
Receive the support offered by the Region.
All registered Clubs will be expected to promote the activities of the Region to their membership.
The Region may accept the registration of a club from outside of their geographical purview of the region but is not required to do so.
The elected officers of the Region shall be Chairperson, Vice Chair, Honorary Treasurer, and Honorary Secretary.
The ordinary business of the Region shall be conducted by a Committee consisting of:
The elected officers of the Region.
Hub Development Officer
All appointed positions within the Region Committee shall be recruited through an open process.
All committee members shall be affiliated to the Region.
Each committee member shall be entitled to one vote at a committee meeting and they may not vote in more than one capacity.
In the event of the voting being equal, the Chairperson shall have the casting vote.
For the Committee to conduct business a quorum of 50% of voting committee members shall constitute a quorum, or two thirds in the case where a Region's committee has only three members.
Alternatively if all voting members of the Committee acknowledge receipt of an email or other written communication detailing a proposal, and a simple majority of voting members clearly indicate their support for that proposal (whether by email or otherwise in writing), the Chairperson may (if satisfied that the foregoing conditions have been met) declare the decision to be enacted without a physical meeting.
The Committee may co-opt as non-voting representatives, anybody that it sees fit to assist in the development of sport.
All elected committee positions shall be for a period of one years before re-election, and the Chairperson shall not hold the role for more than six consecutive years.
All committee members shall declare conflicts of interest in line with the England Fencing Conflict of Interest Policy.
An Honorary President and Honorary Vice Presidents may be appointed (and removed) by an AGM or Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) in appreciation of outstanding service to fencing in the region. The Honorary President and Honorary Vice Presidents shall have no routine duties, but may temporarily chair an AGM or EGM for the purposes of an election if the post of Chair is contested. They may attend regional Committee meetings, but may not vote, and their presence does not constitute part of a quorum.
All individual members of British Fencing affiliated to the Region may vote in the General Meetings of the Region having reached their 18th birthday on or before the date of the meeting.
In the event of a person entitled to a vote, being unable to attend, they may register their proxy vote, in writing or by e-mail, at least 5 days in advance, with the Chair of the meeting. Such a proxy vote may direct the Chair to either cast the vote for/against/abstain on any particular agenda item, or empower the Chair to cast the vote at their discretion.
Normally, all matters will be decided by a show of hands of those members present and eligible to vote, except that at the request of any member present the vote will be taken by a secret ballot.
Approval by a least two-thirds of those present and who are eligible to vote will be required to approve any resolution in respect of the constitution of the Region. Other resolutions will be decided by simple majority and, in the event of a tie, the Chair of the meeting will have a second or casting vote.
Annual General Meeting
The Region shall normally convene an AGM in May or June each year.
The Committee shall be entitled to alter the date of the AGM as circumstances may from time to time dictate provided that no more than 15 months is to elapse between AGMs.
The Honorary Secretary shall take all reasonable steps to give affiliated members twenty-one days notice of an AGM. Reasonable steps shall include posting a notice of the EGM, in not less than 12 point print, on the Region's website, sending an email or letter to each registered Club and informing EF and the County Fencing Unions. With this notice and an agenda for the AGM, the Secretary will make available copies of the annual report and accounts through electronic means.
No AGM shall be deemed convened unless a quorum of at least 8 affiliated individual members are present who are eligible to vote.
In the event that a properly notified AGM should not produce a quorum, the Chair shall cause a new meeting to be convened within 90 days, with the same notice requirements as the original meeting. If a second such meeting is not quorate, the Chairperson (or in their absence any other elected officer) shall notify the Executive Group of EF, who shall have the authority to make such provision for the administration of the region as they deem necessary, until such time as the Executive Group of EF is satisfied that proper Regional governance is restored.
The conduct of Any Other Business is at the discretion of the Chairman of the meeting.
Extraordinary General Meeting
A quorum of the Committee or any 20 affiliated voting members shall be entitled to call an EGM to discuss and vote on any matter on written application to the Honorary Secretary. Such an application shall include a written summary of the business to be discussed at the meeting.
Upon receipt of such an application, the Honorary Secretary shall, within a month of receipt of the formal request for the meeting, take reasonable steps to issue notice of an EGM to all registered members unless the request is withdrawn by all of the applicants within the same period. Reasonable steps shall include posting a notice of the EGM, in not less than 12 point print, on the Region's website, sending an email or letter to each registered Club and informing EF and the County Fencing Unions.
No EGM shall be deemed convened unless a quorum of at least 8 voting members are present.
No business other than that specified in the agenda will be conducted at an EGM.
The budgetary control held by the Committee shall be the responsibility of the Honorary Treasurer.
The financial year shall end on 30th May to be in line with the EF Accounting Year and independently examined accounts up to and including this date shall be presented at the Annual General Meeting.
At each AGM the Honorary Treasurer shall prepare written accounts detailing the financial transactions of the Region since the last AGM, and the Agenda shall contain an item inviting the voting members to comment on, and to approve or refuse to approve these accounts. In the event that the voting members refuse to approve the accounts, the Chairperson, in conjunction with the members, shall word a resolution acceptable to the voting members, detailing the actions required by the Honorary Treasurer to rectify the situation. Once approved by the Committee, details of the accounts of the Region shall be submitted to the Treasurer of EF and copied to the Chairperson and Honorary Secretary. This must be done no later than 6 weeks after the meeting at which the accounts have been approved.
The funds of the Regional Committee shall be held in a suitable bank or building society account and will be allocated through authorisation of the Committee.
The Honorary Treasurer shall maintain a bank account on behalf of the Region, which shall require a minimum of two of the elected officers of the Committee as authorised signatories.
No sub-committee will operate any bank account in respect of its operations and any funds raised or to be dispersed in connection with the activities of any sub-committee will be administered by, or under the oversight of, the Region's Honorary Treasurer.
The income and property of the Region shall be applied solely towards the promotion of its objectives.
The Region shall adopt the British Fencing Child Protection Policy and Procedures. All officers and members acting on behalf of the Region are deemed to have read, understood and assented to the British Fencing Code of Conduct ('Code') and as such recognise and adhere to the principles and responsibilities embodied in the Code.
This Region is committed to ensuring that equity is incorporated across all aspects of its development. In doing so it acknowledges and adopts the following definition of sports equity:
Sports equity is about fairness in sport, equality of access, recognising inequalities and taking steps to address them. It is about changing the culture and structure of sport to ensure it becomes equally accessible to everyone in society.
If at any general meeting a resolution for the dissolution of the Region is passed by two thirds majority of members present, or in the event that the Region is unable to assemble a quorate AGM for a period of 2 consecutive years, the following actions must occur:
The Committee must immediately (or at such future date as specified in the resolution) proceed to realise the assets of the Region.
After the discharge of all liabilities any remaining assets at the time of dissolution become the property of the England Fencing or its successor body ('the Trustee'). The Trustee will distribute such assets to suitable organisations within the region to further the sport of fencing or hold them in trust until such time as the Region can be reconstituted.
Interpretation and amendments to the constitution
The interpretation of this constitution shall be invested in the committee who shall determine any matters not covered above. In the event that a dispute over the interpretation of these articles arises between or within regions the Executive Board of England Fencing Ltd will be the sole arbitrator.
Alterations to the constitution may only be made at an AGM, or at an EGM expressly convened for that purpose, and require a two thirds majority of eligible voters present and voting, or voting by proxy, at the meeting to support it for the amendment(s) to be passed. Notice and quorum requirements are the same as for ordinary business defined above.
North West Region — England Fencing, hereby adopted and accepted this constitution, approved by a general meeting on the 20th April, 2013.
North West Region - England Fencing hereby amended this constitution approved by an EGM on 5th April 2014