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LINCS Bylaws

LINCS Bylaws

10/17/2013

Updated Dec. 10, 2009

ARTICLE I

Name

The name of the staff section shall be "Legislative Information and Communications Staff Section" (LINCS).

Purpose

  • Promote the exchange of ideas and information in the fields of public information, media relations, and other such communication activities as they relate to state legislatures;
  • Promote improved and effective communication between public information staff and their legislators, legislativestaff, and constituents;
  • Advance and promote civic education programs administered by state legislatures;
  • Enhance professional development and expertise for public information and communications staff; and
  • Promote participation in the NCSL to staff section members.

Membership

The membership shall be composed of all persons employed by a member legislature of the NCSL or an agency thereof, in the capacity of the following: public information; communications; media relations; television, radio and broadcast media; civic and public education; public affairs; capitol tours and public use functions; or other such areas related to legislative communications.

ARTICLE II

Meeting of Members

The annual business meeting of the section shall be held at such time and place as shall be designated by the Executive Committee. On the day of the scheduled meeting, the Chair shall call the meeting to order at the designated time. The minutes of the previous meeting shall be read and approved and such business transacted as may properly come before the membership.

NOTICE - There shall be mailed to each member of the section, at least 30 days prior to the annual business meeting, a notice setting the time and place of the meeting. In case a quorum of the membership is not present, the regularly called meeting shall be adjourned to the next day at a time and place to be set by the members present and voting, at which time the members present shall constitute a quorum.

VOTING - All members attending the LINCS business meetings are eligible to vote on matters presented for decision. Business which requires approval of the staff section shall require approval of a majority of staff section members attending the annual business meeting. A quorum for business shall be established by the presence of representatives from a minimum of 20 NCSL member states.

ARTICLE III

Officers

The Chair shall preside at all meetings of the Section and of the Executive Committee, represent LINCS on the NCSL Legislative Staff Coordinating Committee, or designate an alternate, plan the agenda of the annual meeting and training seminar in conjunction with the Executive Committee and shall have general control over the affairs of the Section, subject to the approval of the Executive Committee, and shall sign all certificates and other instruments for the Section. The Chair may delegate his or her responsibilities as required for the most efficient operations and functioning of the section, subject to the review of the Executive Committee.

The Vice Chair shall assist with the planning of all meetings and seminars, preside at any meeting in the absence of the Chair, or serve as the Chair's designee at other meetings when necessary, and perform such other duties as assigned by the Chair. The Vice Chair shall be the Chair-Elect of the Section.

The Secretary/Editor shall countersign all certificates and other instruments of the Section, record the minutes of all meetings of the Section and of the Executive Committee, prepare and distribute copies of minutes of all Section meetings, assist with the preparation and distribution of the Section's newsletter, the Voice; and may delegate tasks assigned with this responsibilities to others, and perform other duties as assigned by the Chair or the Executive Committee.

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee shall be composed of the elected officers of the Section, the immediate past chair of the section, and nine other communication professionals, referred to as Directors, eight of whom shall be elected by the membership at the annual meeting of the Section.

Two Directors shall serve terms of office beginning at the professional development seminar of the off-numbered year following their election and ending at the professional development seminar of the next even numbered year. Two Directors shall serve terms of office beginning at the professional development seminar of the even-numbered year following their election and ending at the professional development seminar of the next off-numbered year. One Director may be appointed by the chair from the state hosting the next annual professional development seminar, serving for a term of one year begining at the professional development seminar and ending at the following professional development seminar.

The Executive Committee shall have authority and responsibility for the general management and control of the business affairs of the Section and shall exercise all powers granted by the Section under these bylaws.

The Executive Committee shall be authorized to assess all members a registration fee which shall be paid as a condition for registration and participation at the annual meeting of the Section. The amount and manner of the registration fee shall be determined by the Executive Committee.

Past Chairs of the Section who are members in good standing of the Section shall be ex-officio members of the Executive Committee but shall not be counted in determining a quorum nor be entitled to vote.

Meeting of the Executive Committee

The Executive Committee shall meet during the annual NCSL conference, the annual LINCS training seminar, and, upon the call of the Chair, at any other time necessary for the orderly conduct of the Section's affairs. Six members of the Executive Committee shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

Duties of the Executive Committee

The Executive Committee shall plan and execute a program for the annual meeting of the section, for the Section's participation in the NCSL Annual Meeting, and for all other meetings of the Section. The Committee shall keep the Section's membership informed of developments relating to their professional areas of interest, shall recommend formal actions as deemed appropriate, and shall be responsible for the continuous review and update of these Bylaws. The chair of the Executive Committee may, from time to time, appoint subcommittees of the Executive Committee as appropriate.

Any member of the Executive Committee may be assigned by the Chair to assist NCSL staff with the administrative responsibilities associated with the Section.

ARTICLE IV

Nominating Committee

No later than 120 days prior to the convening of the annual meeting of the Section, the Chair shall appoint from the membership of the Section a nominating committee of five members. The committee shall recommend to the membership persons to be elected to the offices of Vice Chair, Secretary/Editor, and for the seven Directors of the Section. The name of the Vice Chair shall be submitted to the membership as the nominee for the Chair of the Section. Criteria for appointing members of the nominating committee shall include, but is not limited to, geography, job description, NCSL involvement, political/nonpartisan affiliation, race and gender. No member of the nominating committee shall be a candidate for election to the Executive Committee that year.

Not less than 90 days prior to each annual meeting of the Section the nominating committee shall mail to the membership a notice announcing the opening of nominations for candidates for the offices of Vice Chair, Secretary/Editor, and the four Directors. The notice shall describe the responsibilities of each officer of the Section and of the Executive Committee. The notice also shall list the name, address, phone number, and professional title of each member of the nominating committee.

Members who wish to present themselves as candidates for Executive Committee shall submit their candidacy in writing to the chair of the nominating committee. The deadline for the receipt of such submissions shall be established by the nominating committee. Each candidate must state which position he or she is seeking, e.g., Vice Chair, Secretary/Editor, or Director. A candidate also must submit a letter to the nominating committee chair from a supervisor or presiding officer which affirms that the candidate will be permitted to travel and complete the other responsibilities of a LINCS officer or director. All candidacy letters will be distributed to the members of the nominating committee.

The nominating committee shall consider several criteria when offering a slate of candidates to the full membership. The criteria shall include, but is not limited to, geography, job description, NCSL involvement, political/nonpartisan affiliation, race and gender. The nominating committee shall recommend the slate of candidates which shall be submitted for vote of the membership at the annual meeting of the section; provided, however, additional nominations may be made from the floor by the membership. Election to the office of Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary/Editor, and the four Directors requires a majority vote of the member states, insular possessions, and territories present and voting.

Candidates are prohibited from seeking the endorsement of current members of the executive committee. Sitting officers or directors of the executive committee are prohibited from endorsing candidates.

ARTICLE V

Vacancies

In the case of death, resignation, or inability to serve of any officer or member of the Executive Committee, the ranking officer shall submit to the remaining members of the Executive Committee a nomination to fill the vacancy or vacancies for the remainder of the term. A majority vote of the remaining members of the Executive Committee shall confirm appointments to such vacancies.

ARTICLE VI

Amendments of Bylaws

These Bylaws may be amended at any annual meeting of the Section by a majority vote of the members present. Notice of the proposed amendment to these Bylaws shall be provided to the membership 30 days prior to the annual meeting of the Section.

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