Rule 24 has long provided for annual checks of the accounts of the Association's funds, but a difficulty, caused primarily by the absence of a vice-Chairman, has arisen in recent years preventing the timely accomplishment of the intended task. The Committee has decided to extend the pool of available individuals to include all Committee members and not just the Officers. Rule 24 will, on endorsement at AGM 2020, read:
Rule 24. The accounts of the funds of the Association shall be subject to an independent check annually, as soon as possible after the end of the financial year of the Association (31 March), by 2 members of the Committee of the Association other than the Treasurer and Deputy Treasurer.
This Bye-Law gives immediate effect to that revised Rule 24.
The situation caused by the coronavirus or COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented and the Association must respond accordingly, as far as adherence to the Constitution and Rules goes. To be precise, Article 14 of the Constitution requires the Association to hold a meeting of all members, known as the Annual General Meeting, each year. When Article 14 was written in 1991, it was probably not envisaged that there would come a time when such a meeting could not be held in any one calendar year, but the Association needs now to take such a scenario into account, amending both Rules and the Constitution to allow for such exceptional circumstances.
Article 14 of the Constitution to be amended, adding after ‘Committee’ “, but in accordance with the Rules where a meeting in one or more years may be prevented by extenuating circumstances”.
After Rule 31 shall be added “Rule 31A. Notwithstanding Article 14 of the Constitution, if extenuating circumstances dictate, the Committee shall postpone or cancel an annual meeting of the Association and inform the membership of the reason. Simultaneously, the Secretary shall distribute to the membership copies of the accounts that would have been discussed and approved (or rejected) at the meeting had it not been cancelled or postponed. If such meeting cannot be held within the intended calendar year, the Committee shall make arrangements for the next meeting to be held as early as possible in the following calendar year; it will though not be necessary for multiple meetings to be held in any one calendar year.”
This Bye-Law takes effect immediately where the amendment to the Rules is concerned, in accordance with Rule 48.