The name of this organization shall be “Morgantown Chess Club”, hereafter referred to as The Club. The Club was founded November 17, 2005.
The Club is organized to promote chess awareness and enjoyment in northern central West Virginia. These objectives are pursued by providing opportunities for chess play on a regular basis. Club activities may include, but are not limited to, chess tournaments, lectures, exhibitions, and team matches.
The Club meets regularly in Morgantown, West Virginia. It upholds a club affiliate membership of the United States Chess Federation (USCF).
Membership is open to anyone, provided she or he agrees to the payment of club dues as provided in Article 5, and agrees to the rules and regulations of the club as stated in this document. Minors age 12 and under must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
5.1 The annual membership fee for the subsequent calendar year shall be determined at the Annual General Meeting in October (Article 8).
5.2 The dues for annual membership shall be paid no later than January 15th. This does not include any special fees for tournaments, simultaneous exhibitions, or other special club activities; the fees for which are to be set at the discretion of the Club Officers.
5.3 Membership fees shall become due for payment on or before a prospective member’s fourth visit to the club, unless a Club Officer provides a temporary dispensation.
5.4 Full-time students, juniors (age 19 and under), and seniors (age 65 and over) receive a 50% discount on their membership fee. New members joining after August 31st will have their annual fee for the current year reduced by half. Membership fees are non-refundable.
6.1 A Board of five members conducts the daily affairs of the Club (Article 7) in accordance with its constitution. These Board members are the four elected Club Officers: President, Vice-president, Treasurer, and Secretary and one member-at-large. Board members elected by the membership at General Meetings (Article 8). Election procedures and terms of office are described in Article 9.
6.2 Board Members must be members in good standing for their term of office. A member in good standing is one who does not have any club sanction imposed on him or her. Any member of the club, aged 18 or older, is eligible to hold office. The Board member-at-large must be aged 16 or older.
6.3 The duties of the President include presiding over the meetings of the club, acting as the Club’s main public representative, initiating activities that will help meet the Club’s objectives (Article 2), and presenting club business to the membership in a way that encourages input and participation.
6.4 The Vice-President assists the President in his/her duties and acts as President in his/hers absence.
6.5 The duties of the Treasurer include keeping all financial and membership records, collecting membership fees (Article 5), handling all financial transactions, paying all expenses duly agreed upon by the officers and members, maintaining the club bank account, and reporting to the officers and members the state of the club treasury.
6.6 The duties of the Secretary include taking minutes of club meetings (Board and General Meetings), distributing information to the membership about upcoming Club activities and General Meetings, and preparing promotional material aimed at recruitment of new members.
6.7 If any Officer is no longer able or willing to carry out his or her duties, the Club Board shall appoint another member of the Club to assume that particular office until the next General Meeting (Article 8). If the Club presidency becomes vacant, the Vice President shall assume the role of the President, and an interim Vice President shall be appointed until the next General Meeting is held.
7.1 Board meetings are called at the discretion of the President or at least two other Board members. Club business shall only be transacted when all Board members have been properly notified of the Board meeting, and a quorum consisting of at least three Board members including the President and/or the Vice-President is present.
7.2 Decisions of the Board are made by a majority vote of the Board members present. In the event of a tied vote, the President and in his absence the Vice-President has the tie-breaking vote. Any decision of the Board may be overridden at a General Meeting (Articles 8). Meeting minutes shall be recorded by the Secretary or submitted by a Board member to the Secretary for record purposes if he/she is not in attendance.
7.3 The Board may appoint members to handle club functions such as Tournament Director, Equipment Manager, and Webmaster as it thinks fit.
7.4 The Club Board may issue bylaws, which are deemed prudent and in the interests of the Club. These bylaws are considered binding on every member until revoked by the Board or a General Meeting (Article 8). Bylaws shall be consistent with and cannot annul any part of this constitution.
8.1 The Annual General Meeting (AGM) takes place in the month of October. The Club Board shall set an agenda and call for this meeting with no less than two weeks notice given to the membership. The agenda for the AGM shall be posted at the regular Club meeting place and communicated to the membership by mail.
8.2 The AGM agenda will include, but is not limited to, the following items: (i) Minutes of previous General Meeting, (ii) President's Report, (iii) Treasurer's Report, (iv) Election of Club Officers (see Article 9), and (v) Determination of next year’s Membership fee (Article 5).
8.3 An extraordinary General Meeting shall be called on the instructions of a simple majority of the Club Board, or on a requisition signed by not less than one-third of the membership. Two weeks notice of an extraordinary General Meeting shall be given to the membership.
8.4 At any General Meeting, the greater of twenty (20) percent of the current membership or three members shall constitute a quorum required for decision-making.
8.5 Any member may lodge motions for discussion at a General Meeting with the Secretary. This must happen no later than one week prior to the General Meeting.
8.6 Motions are decided by majority vote, but separate rules apply for amendments to the club constitution and bylaws (Article 11) and for motions to dissolve the Club (Article 12). In the event of a tied vote, the President and in his absence the Vice-President has the tie-breaking vote. All present members in good standing may vote. Votes by proxy are not allowed. The default voting procedure is by raise of hands, but at the request of any member a secret ballot shall be conducted.
9.1 Club Officers are elected for two-year terms at the Annual General Meeting. The President and Secretary are elected in even years (2006, 2008 etc.). The Vice-President and Treasurer are elected in uneven years (e.g. 2007). The Club Board (Article 8) is completed by one member-at-large, who is elected for a one-year term.
9.2 Board positions filled temporarily at the discretion of the Board (Article 6.7) shall be re-filled by decision of the next General Meeting (Annual or Extraordinary). If the vacant office was not up for election according to the regular election terms (Article 9.1), it shall be filled for the remainder of the regular term only.
9.3 Once a General Meeting has been called for, any member in good standing may nominate eligible (Article 6.2) candidates for open Board positions. Preferably this should happen by notifying the Secretary ahead of the General meeting, but nominations made from the floor of the meeting shall also be accepted.
9.4 Nominees may choose to either accept or decline the nomination. Nominations may be accepted at the General Meeting or ahead of time by depositing an (oral or written) affidavit with any Club Officer (President, Vice-President, Treasurer, or Secretary). Nominees need not be present at the elections, but in order to appear on the ballot they must have accepted the nomination.
9.5 Election as a Board Member requires simple majority among the votes cast, excluding blank and invalid votes. Should the vote be split in such a way that no majority exist for any single candidate, a second round of voting will take place. This second round will include only the two candidates that received the most votes in the first election round. Should more candidates be tied for second-most votes, all of these will enter the second election round. Whoever receives the most votes on the second ballot is elected.
9.6 A neutral and mutually trusted individual, who is not running for office, will count the votes and report the results to the General Meeting attendees. If no such person can be unanimously agreed upon, two club members (not running for office) will be appointed in random fashion.
10.1 During tournament and club activities, members and visitors are expected to adhere to the "USCF Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct" as stated in the most recent USCF Official Rules of Chess. In addition members and visitors should refrain from annoying, loud, vulgar or obscene language or behavior.
10.2 Members who violate either the Club’s rules and regulations or the “USCF Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct” are subject to any or all of the following sanctions: warning, reprimand, suspension, and expulsion.
10.3 Warnings or reprimands may be issued by Club Officers, and should be in proportion to the offense. A temporary suspension must be approved by no less than four out of the five Board members. Expulsion from the Club must be approved by no less than four out of the five Board members and a 3/4 majority among members in attendance at a General Meeting. No motion for expulsion shall be voted on unless its subject has been invited to attend the meeting and been given written notice of the motion and its associated reasons.
11.1 This constitution may be changed or amended at any General Meeting. A motion for changes and/or amendments to the Club constitution or bylaws requires twice as many approving votes as opposing votes.
11.2 Notice of Motions for changes and/or amendments to this constitution must be given one week prior to the General Meeting (Article 8.5).
11.3 Bylaws issued by the Club Board (Article 7.4) are considered binding on every member, but may be revoked by the Board or by a simple majority of members in attendance at a General Meeting (Article 8).
12.1 The decision to terminate the Club’s existence requires approval by 2/3 of the members in attendance at an extraordinary General Meeting called for this sole purpose. The time and place of the meeting must be brought to the attention of all members on record at least two weeks prior to such a meeting.
12.2 If the motion for dissolution is approved, the membership will also decide how to allocate the Club’s assets and deal with any other pertinent matters.
Club meets Thursday evenings from 7 to 11pm at First Christian Church (basement) in Morgantown (directions). The club is closed the last Thursday of every month.