Name, Affiliation, and Purposes
Name- the name of this affiliation shall be Greenbelt Counseling Association or abbreviated GBCA.
Affiliation- This association is affiliated with the Texas Counseling Association and shall conduct its affairs in compliance with the Bylaws of that organization. GBCA may affiliate with other groups whose purposes are consistent with the Bylaws of GBCA. Greenbelt Counseling Association adheres to the Texas Counseling Association and the American Counseling Association Code of Ethics.
Purpose- The purpose of this association is defined by the mission statement, values, and goals of the Texas Counseling Association in the Association’s current Strategic Plan, as developed by the Association Board of Directors and approved by the Association Senate.
Mission Statement- To promote professional growth, advance and develop the counseling profession, and positively impact our community by enhancing mental wellness.
Types of Membership - membership shall be of one type - individual. Such persons may become members of the Association upon payment of annual dues.
Classes of Membership – Membership shall be of three classes – regular, student and retiree.
Eligibility- professionals who have a license in human development or counseling: guidance and professional counselors, marriage and family counselors, licensed chemical dependency counselors, psychologists, and/or any professional that can be a member of the Texas Counseling Association
Privileges - Any person who has met the qualifications for regular membership and has paid the prescribed dues shall be eligible to attend meetings of the Association, to vote, and to hold office.
Eligibility - Open to students who are enrolled in a planned program in the area of human development - specifically guidance, counseling, personnel work, community agency work, master social work, school psychologists, and/or any student eligible for membership in the Texas Counseling Association.
Privileges - Any person who has met the qualifications for student membership and has paid the prescribed dues shall be eligible to attend meetings of the Association, but student members may not vote nor hold office.
Any person who retires and is a current member of the Association may continue membership with the same privileges as regular membership.
TCA and ACA Membership – Members of this Association shall be encouraged to apply for membership in the Texas Counseling Association and its divisions.
Dues - Dues for members of the Association shall be recommended by the Board of Directors and established by action of the Membership. Payment of dues to the Association shall entitle a person to membership as qualified in these by-laws.
Severance of Membership
- A member may be dropped from membership for the nonpayment of dues.
- A member may be dropped from membership for any conduct that tends to injure or discredit the Association, or that is contrary to or destructive of the objectives according to the By-Laws and Code of Ethics of the Association.
- A member may be dropped from membership if their license or certification is revoked by their credentialing agency.
- It shall be the responsibility of the Board of Directors to determine whether or not a member should be dropped from membership.
Officers and Staff of the Association
Officers and Terms of Office-The officers of this Association shall be the President, the Vice President, the Immediate Past President, the Secretary, the Treasurer, and the Membership Chair.
All officers of the Association shall be elected at large from among the individual members of the Association and shall serve for one-year terms or until successors are elected; and the Senator who shall serve for a two-year term.
The term of office of any elected or appointed officer of the Association shall begin on July 1, and shall be for a period of one year or until a successor takes office unless the Chapter By-laws specify a two-year term.
Duties of Officers
The President schedules and presides at all meetings of the Association and shall be chairperson of and preside at meetings of the Board of Directors and the Senate. The President prepares an annual report on the incoming officers and the activities and responsibilities of the Association. The President attends the TCA Summer Leadership Training Institute. The President shall be an Ex Officio member without vote of all committees except the Nominations and Election Committee.
The Vice President shall perform the duties of the President in the absence or incapacity of the President as determined by the Board of Directors. The Vice President shall assume the Presidency of the Association upon the death or resignation of the President. The Vice President must maintain membership in TCA. The Vice President coordinates the service projects and chairs sub committees of the Chapter. The Vice President shall serve as Chapter/Division Coordinator. The Vice President is encouraged to attend the TCA Summer Leadership Training Institute.
The Immediate Past President shall serve as chairperson of the Nomination and Election Committee and perform such other duties as delegated to him/her by the Board of Directors and the Senate.
The Secretary shall keep records of the meetings of the Board of Directors. The Secretary shall be empowered to execute official documents of the Association and to perform the duties customary to this office and additional duties as directed by the Board and the Senate. Upon the death or resignation of the Secretary, the Board of Directors shall select someone to fill the unexpired term.
The Treasurer shall serve as chairperson of the Finance Committee and represent the Association in assuring the receipt and expenditures of funds in accordance with the directives established by the Board of Directors and shall be under such bond as may be determined by the Board of Directors. The Treasure shall be responsible for seeing that a financial report is prepared for presentation at each meeting of the Board of Directors. The Treasure shall be in attendance at the meetings of the Board of Directors and Senate and shall perform such additional duties as may be directed by the Board of Directors and the Senate. Upon the death of resignation of the Treasurer, the Board of Directors shall select someone to fill the unexpired term.
The Senator shall represent the Association in the TCA Senate and shall serve as specified by the TCA By-Laws, Article V. Upon the death or resignation of the Senator, the Board of Directors shall select someone to fill the unexpired term.
Nomination and Election of Officers and Board Members
All members in good standing, except student members, may vote.
The Board of Directors of the Chapter shall conduct the nomination election of officers by secret ballot mailed to the voting membership.
All elected officers and board members of the Association shall be Members of GBCA and TCA. The Senator shall also be member of ACA.
The Board of Directors of the Chapter shall use the following guidelines in nominating and electing procedures.
- The nomination ballot shall be mailed to the voting membership and made available to the membership on the internet as close as is feasible to January 1.
- The nominations ballot shall include a statement indicating that the returned Ballot may be returned in two ways, shall specify the requirements necessary to hold each office or position listed on the nomination ballot, and shall also include a statement that any qualified member may nominate more than one person for each elective office:
- First class mail postmarked on or before March 1.
- Placed in a ballot box at the March meeting.
- The names of the two nominees receiving the highest number of votes for each office shall be placed on the election ballot, which shall be mailed to the voting membership and made available on the internet as close to April 1 of each year as is feasible.
The election ballot shall include a statement indicating that the ballot may be returned in two ways:
- The ballot may be postmarked on or before May 1 to be counted.
- The ballot may be placed in a locked ballot box at the April Meeting.
- The candidate receiving the higher number of votes for each office shall be elected.
The candidates shall be informed of their election status at least five days prior to installation date of elected officers. Officers shall be installed at the regular May meeting of the Association.
All ballots, envelopes and tally sheets shall be sealed and filed with the Secretary. Such materials are to be held secure for one year. In the event of a tie for first place, a runoff election will be conducted with a June 1 postmark deadline.
The Board of Directors of the Chapter shall submit a detailed plan regarding nomination and election procedures during the November board meeting. The plan shall include procedures for:
- certification of date of mailing of nomination and election ballots;
- method of determining authenticity of the voter;
- criteria for the nomination vita sheet so as not to be preferential to any candidate; and
- procedure for counting and verifying correction of election results;
- procedure for handling a tie vote for nomination and elections.
Removal of an Officer or Board Member from Office
Members of Greenbelt Counseling Association (GBCA) affirm that GBCA has the right and obligation to prescribe and enforce its standards for those who hold office
An Officer of Board Member may be sanctioned or removed for office for cause. (A list of the most common valid causes for removal of an Officer from office can found in the TCA Governance Manual Section 10-D as may be amended from time to time).
Any Officer of Board Member who is not fulfilling the prescribe standards of his/her office shall be notified in writing by the President as directed by the Board. The Officer or Board Member so notified will then be given an opportunity to be heard and to rectify the situation, if possible.
GBCA shall adhere to the protocol for the removal of officers as set forth by the Texas Counseling Association.
Board of Directors
The Board of Directors shall be composed as follows:
- The Officers of the Association
- Three members elected from the membership.
The term of office for each member of the Board of Directors other than elected officers of the association shall be two (2) years and shall begin on July 1 of the election year. Upon the death or resignation of one of the board members from the Membership, the Board of Directors shall select someone to fill the unexpired term.
No member of the Board of Directors may concurrently represent more than one division or simultaneously represent a division and a region.
All members of the Board of Directors shall be members of ACA and TCA.
Powers and Functions of the Board of Directors
- To execute policies formulated by the Senate
- To propose Association policies and recommend such policies to the Senate for its consideration and action.
- To formulate operational policies appropriate for executive action and direct the execution thereof, subject to review by the Senate.
- To identify issues and recommend priorities for professional thrust relating to problems of human development pertinent to the Association.
- To facilitate and maintain the election process of the elected positions of the Chapter.
Meetings of the Board of Directors
The Board of Directors shall convene in August. The Board of Directors shall also meet in October, January, March, and May, prior to the regular scheduled meetings of the Association. Additional meetings of the Board of Directors may be called by a majority vote or petition of the members of the Board of Directors and/or upon the call of the President. The Board of Directors shall fix the time and place of such additional meetings at least thirty (30) days prior to any such additional meeting.
The President of the Association shall preside at meetings of the Board of Directors and the President-Elect shall preside in the absence of the President.
Each member of the Board of Directors shall have one vote and the Treasure who shall be ex officio without vote. A majority of the voting members of the Board shall constitute a quorum.
Any Board action voted on by mail-ballot must be recorded in the minutes at the next Board meeting.
The Executive Committee of the Board of Directors shall consist of the President, Vice President, Immediate Past President, and Secretary, three of whom shall constitute a quorum. The GBCA Secretary shall serve as Secretary of the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee shall act for the Board of Directors within the limits of the written policies established by the Board of Directors and/or Senate.
Membership in chapters shall be open to any person eligible for membership in TCA or ACA
Qualification of Officers – All officers of TCA chapters must be members of TCA
Representatives to the Senate – Each TCA chapter shall elect a representative to serve as a member of the Senate of TCA. The elected representative must be a member in good standing of TCA an ACA. The President of the chapter shall certify the representative to the President of TCA at least thirty (30) days prior to each Senate Meeting.
Determination of Status – The granting of chapter status shall be a function of the Senate upon recommendation of the Board of Directors
Conduct of Affairs – Chapters of the Association shall be autonomous in the conduct of their affairs, consistent by the By-Laws of the Association.
Review of Status – Upon recommendation of the Board of Directors, recognition of chapters may be withdrawn by the Senate. A review by the Board of Directors shall be made annually of the recognition of chapters.
Reports - Each chapter shall make an annual written report of its activities, minutes, financial statements and any changes in the chapter's By-Laws to the TCA President on or before a date set by the TCA President each fiscal year, and shall report at any other time requested by the TCA President.
Membership Dues and Financing - Each chapter shall determine its own membership dues and be responsible for its own financing.
Standing Committees – The Standing Committees of the Association shall be those committees recommended by the Board of Directors – (i.e. Awards Committee, By-Laws Committee, Ethics Committee, Hospitality Committee, Legislative Committee, Membership Committee, Nomination and Election Committee, Program Committee, and PR/Marketing Committee.)
Appointment of Committees – The President, subject to confirmation by the Board of Directors, shall name such standing and special committees as may be needed to conduct the activities of the Association.
Appointment of Special Committees and Chairpersons - The President, subject to confirmation by the Board of Directors, shall name such special committees as may be needed to conduct the activities of the Association.]
Regular Meetings – Six meetings shall be scheduled from September through May. The Board of Directors shall determine time and place for these meetings.
Special Workshops/Conferences – Special workshops/conferences shall be scheduled according to the needs of the Association. It is recommended that a minimum of one Workshop/Conference be completed per year.
Dues – Annual Association dues for membership shall be recommended by the Board of Directors,
Budget – The Board of Directors shall prepare and present a budget for adoption at the final meeting of the Association each year. The approved budget shall be reported to the membership.
Financial – A financial report shall be presented to the Board of Directors at the final meeting of the Association each year.
Severable or Transferable Interest – No member shall have any severable or transferable interest in the Association.
Control and Management – All property of the Association shall be subject to the control and management of the Board of Directors. Any accumulation or disposal of real property, except upon dissolution of the Association, must be approved in advance by the Board of Directors.
Disposal and Dissolution – Upon dissolution of the Association, none of its property shall be distributed to any of the members, and all such property shall be transferred to such other organization or organizations as the Board of Directors shall determine to have purposes and activities most nearly consonant with those of the Association, provided that such other organization(s) shall be exempt under Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Laws.
Appropriation of Association Funds – No appropriation of Association funds shall be made except pursuant to the authority of the Board of Directors.
Chapter Disbursements – All expenses of a division or chapter shall be paid for by fund possessed by the chapter.
Officer and Committee Expense – All expenses incurred by an officer or Committee of the Association in excess of the funds appropriated therefore shall be the personal liability of the person or persons authorizing such excessive expenses.
Association Year – The official year and the fiscal year shall be July 1 to June 30 of the following year.
Indemnification of Directors, Officers and Employees – To the extent permitted by law, each director, officer and employee of the Association whether or not then in office, shall be indemnified by theAssociation against all costs and expenses reasonably incurred by or imposed upon him/her in connection with or arising out of any action, suit or proceeding in which he/she may be involved by reason of his/her being or having been a director, officer, or employee of the Association, such expenses to include the cost of reasonable settlements (other than amounts paid to the Association itself) made with a view to curtailment of costs of litigation. The foregoing right of indemnification shall not be exclusive of other rights to which any director, officer or employee may be entitled as a matter of law. The Association shall be authorized to purchase Association liability insurance, without obtaining reimbursement of all or any part of the premium, to insure the Association's obligations under By-Law and to indemnify directors, officers, and employees against liability, loss and expense incurred by them or any of them by reason of having been a director, officer, or employee of the Association, whether or not the director, officer, or employee has or would have a right of indemnification from the Association under By-Law.
Policies and Procedures – supplementary policies and implementation guidelines for these by- laws are found in the TCA Governance Manual.
Executive Editors - The Board of Directors, subject to confirmation by the Senate, appoint executive editors of the Association newsletter and journal.
The Association shall own the copyright for the original and any renewal term for any writing that is published by the Association.
The author of any such writing shall have the right to make a non-profit or non-commercial use of the work provided that there is affixed to each copy the copyright notice used by the Association when the writing was first published.
The author shall have right to make or authorize for profit or commercial use any such writing only after first obtaining the written consent of the Association.
(a) Amendments may be proposed by the Board of Directors, the executive body of any of the organized divisions or chapters of the Association, or by an individual member, provided that in case of an individual member, the proposed amendment shall be presented over the signatures of at least fifty percent of the members in good standing. All such proposed amendments must be submitted in writing or electronically to the By-Laws Committee at least ninety (90) days prior to any meeting of the board. The By-Laws Committee shall transmit to the Board for its consideration all such proposed amendments with or without a recommendation regarding each, at least thirty (30) days prior to the board meeting.
(b) Proposed amendments may originate with the By-Laws Committee. Such proposed amendments shall be presented to the Board, accompanied by rationale, at least thirty (30) days prior to the Board meeting.
(1) Proposals to amend the By-Laws may be amended by a majority vote of the members of the Board of Directors, or by petition signed by twenty-five regular members in good standing. All such proposed amendments must be submitted in writing to the Board of Directors at least sixty (60) days prior to the presentation of the amendment to the membership for approval or disapproval. Each member shall receive a written or electronic copy of the proposed amendment thirty (30) days prior to the regular meeting of the Association in which the amendment is presented.
(2) These By-Laws may be amended at a regular meeting of the Association by a 2/3 affirmative vote of members present.
(c) The President shall report amendments and file such amendments with the TCA Executive Director within thirty (30) days following membership approval.
Rules of Order
- Section 1 Rules of Order Robert's Rules of Order Revised (by Henry Martin Robert) shall govern the proceedings of the Association not otherwise specified in the By-Laws.