Posted September 5, 2017 in Membership
Over the weekend of July 22-23, 2017, CALSPro held a strategic planning session (SPS) for the purposes of examining and discussing the current state of the association, and crafting goals and objectives to maintain the association’s viability to best meet the needs of the members.
In preparation for the SPS, surveys were conducted to gather input from members and non-members in our industry. Many of the issues identified in the surveys are being addressed by the leadership but two issues require a bylaw amendments and majority vote of the membership before they can be changed.
ISSUE #1: VOTING FOR OFFICERS
The first issue has to do with voting for officers. Currently, the bylaws state that all officers must be elected by popular vote at the annual conference. The problem is, this excludes members from voting unless they can attend the conference.
The members of the SPS unanimously agreed that we should do whatever it takes to give more people the opportunity to run for office and/or vote. To make this possible, the following bylaw amendment was proposed:
ARTICLE VIII – ELECTIONS
Section 1. The Directors and Officers shall be elected by a secret written ballot at the Annual Meeting.
Section 2. No person shall be eligible for election as an Officer or to the Board of Directors unless he/she has been a member in good standing for one (1) year or was admitted at the last annual conference. All eligible members may declare their candidacy to the Nominating Committee must be nominated by a member in good standing and seconded by one or more such members at the Annual Meeting. In order to be eligible to run for the office of President, one must have been a member in good standing for a minimum of three consecutive years and have served a minimum of two years as an Officer or as a member of the Board of Directors.
Section 3. No vote either by representation or by proxy shall be allowed.
Section 4. Any member nominating an absentee for any office or seat on the Board of Directors shall present a letter from the candidate stating his willingness to serve if elected.
Section 5. Election to all seats to the Board of Directors shall be filled in one combined vote. The candidates receiving the most votes will fill the seats in order of their vote total until all seats are filled. If a tie should occur for the last vacancy, only those candidates tied shall participate in a run-off ballot to fill the last seat. A majority vote shall not be required to serve as a Director. Each voting member shall receive one (1) voting ballot for all seats to be filled on the Board. Any ballot containing two or more votes for the same candidate shall be void.
Section 6. All officers and directors elected shall hold office from the close of each annual conference until the close of the succeeding annual conference.
Section 7. In all votes, an eligible member’s vote shall be counted as one (1) vote.
ISSUE #2: MEMBERSHIP CATEGORIES AND DUES
The second issue requiring a bylaw amendment has to do with membership categories and dues; specifically with the Company and Individual membership categories. They surveys show that members felt like our current dues were not a good value and effectively excluded small companies from having access to the pouch system and advertising opportunities.
To address these concerns, it was proposed that the benefits and privileges of both categories be combined into a single “Active Member” category with the assumption that the board would set the annual dues at $300 or $30 per month using auto-pay. To encourage even more people to join, a new “Independent Contractor” category was created with limited benefits and privileges. The assumption is that the board would set these dues at $100 per year or $10 per month using auto-pay.
To make this possible, the following bylaw amendment was proposed:
ARTICLE IV – MEMBERSHIP
Section 1. There shall be seven (7) classes of membership in this Association, namely: Active, Independent Contractor, Associate, Honorary, Retired, Vendor, and Supporting.
Section 2. Active Member. An Active member shall be an individual engaged in the process serving, court filing, electronic filing, photocopy, or attorney service business. Active members shall be qualified to be a Registered Process Server or Photocopier under the provisions of the Business and Professions Code of the State of California, and shall have no felony convictions or convictions of a misdemeanor involving moral turpitude within the immediate preceding seven years. Active members shall be entitled to a listing in the association Membership Directory which will list their name, company name, address, telephone, fax and e-mail only. Active members may advertise their name, and/or company name, in all association-produced directories, publications and on the website. Active members may vote, hold office, elected or appointed, and may serve on or chair a committee. Active Membership in this Association is not transferable.
Section 3. Independent Contractor Member. An Independent Contractor member shall be an individual engaged in the process serving, photocopy or court filing business inside of the State of California. An independent contractor is a natural person that provides goods or services to another entity under terms specified in a contract or within a verbal agreement. Independent contractor members may advertise their name, and/or company name, in the member’s only section of the website. Independent Contractor members may not vote or hold office, elected or appointed; but may serve on or chair a committee.
Section 4. Associate Member. An Associate member shall be an individual engaged in the process serving, court filing, photocopy, or attorney service business located outside of the State of California. Associate members shall be entitled to a listing in the association Membership Directory under the Associate member section; however, they may not make reference to any branch office(s) that they may have in California, unless they opt to also have an Active membership. Associate members may advertise their company name in all association produced directories, publications and on the website. Associate members shall be eligible for a listing on the association website under the associate member section. Associate members may not vote, or hold office, elected or appointed; but may serve on or chair a committee.
Section 5. Honorary Member. Honorary members shall have all rights and privileges of membership including the right to vote and to hold elected office. The privilege of this membership shall be determined by a majority vote of the Board of Directors. An Honorary member shall be dues‐exempt.
Section 6. Retired Member. A Retired Member shall be a current or former Individual Member of this Association, in good standing, who has permanently retired from the practice of process serving, court filing, photocopy, or the legal support profession. A Retired member shall have all the rights and privileges of membership, including the right to vote and to hold elected office. The privilege of this membership shall be determined by the Membership Committee upon application by the individual. A Retired member shall be dues exempt.
Section 7. Vendor Member. A Vendor member shall be any company associated with the process serving, court filing, photocopy, or attorney service profession, except owners, partners, or stock-holding corporate officers of process serving, photocopy or attorney service firms. Vendor members may advertise their company name in all association directories and publications. Vendor members shall be entitled to a listing in the association Membership Directory under the Vendor member section. Vendor members may not vote, hold any office, elected or appointed; but may serve on or chair a committee.
Section 8. Supporting Member. A Supporting member shall be an individual who is associated with the legal profession who is not otherwise eligible for any other membership category. Supporting members shall be entitled to receive all publications and notices, attend meetings, training courses, annual conferences, and may serve on committees. Supporting members may not vote or hold office, elected or appointed.
Section 9. Each application must be accompanied by the full membership dues. Each application must be considered by the Membership Committee. If the Membership Committee determines that the applicant meets all requirements, the applicant shall be deemed a member. In the event an application does not meet all requirements, it shall be presented to the Board of Directors for review. If the application is rejected, all dues paid shall be refunded.
Section 10. The resignation of any member in good standing shall be accepted when made in writing to the Secretary-Treasurer. The Secretary-Treasurer, immediately upon receipt of such resignation, shall notify the President that such resignation has been received and accepted.
Section 11. A Founding member is defined as one of the original founders of this Association whose membership is in good standing. Only Founding members in good standing may indicate that they are Founding members.
Please join us at the 49th annual conference in Rancho Mirage to help vote for these significant changes.