Constitution of The Meteorological Society of NZ (inc.)

(As amended on 27 August 1992, 14 August 1995, 26 November 1998, 19 December 2003 and 24 November 2004, 18th March 2009, 23 November 2015)

1. Name

The name of the Society shall be the Meteorological Society of New Zealand (Incorporated).

2. Objects

The objects of the Society shall be to encourage an interest in the atmosphere, weather and climate, particularly as related to the New Zealand region and to foster the exchange of information in meteorology and climatology.

The Society shall not make any distribution whether by way of money, property or otherwise howsoever to any proprietor, member or shareholder.

3. Membership

Membership is open to any individual, institution or organisation who has an interest in the objects of the Society. Individuals may be members whether or not they are employed in meteorology, climatology or related fields.

Honorary membership may be awarded by a General Meeting of the Society, on the recommendation of the Executive Committee, to persons who have made an exceptional contribution to meteorology. Honorary members will be exempt from all dues and assessments.

Life-membership is available to members of the Society who: (i) are retired and are 60 years of age and older, (ii) have been a member for at least 15 years, and (iii) have paid a fee equivalent to 10 years membership

4. Election of Members

All individuals, institutions and organisations applying for membership except foundation members shall forward applications to the Secretary for consideration by the Executive Committee.

5. Termination of Membership

Membership of the Society may be terminated in each of the following ways:

  1. Voluntary resignation by letter to the Secretary. The resignation shall take effect one month after the receipt of the letter. The Executive Committee may require the resigning member to pay any outstanding fees.
  2. Expulsion for non-payment of fees. Any member one year in arrears with fees will forfeit membership and will be re-admitted to membership only by the procedure laid down in Section 4.
  3. Expulsion for conduct which is a violation of the Society’s constitution or is harmful or defamatory to the Society as a whole. Expulsion of a member may only be considered at an Executive Committee meeting if the member has been sent by post at least ten days before the meeting a notice of the motion of expulsion, together with a statement of the grounds on which misconduct is alleged. Expulsion shall be authorised only by a majority of at least two-thirds of the Executive Committee. A member shall have a right of appeal against expulsion before a General Meeting of the Society.

6. General Meeting of the Society

A General Meeting shall be held at least annually between 1 August and 30 November. Additional Special General Meetings may be held from time to time. All General Meetings shall be summoned by circular to all members at least 15 days prior to the meeting. A quorum at such meetings shall be the presence of at least fifteen Members of the Society. Such a general meeting shall be called by the Secretary at the request of any fifteen Members of the Society. In so far as General Meetings of the Society are concerned, each institutional and organisational member shall be represented by one nominated person who shall have similar powers to individual members of the Society.

7. Annual General Meetings – Business

The business of Annual General Meetings shall be to:

  1. Receive the President’s report and audited balance sheet and the income and expenditure accounts for the preceding financial years.
  2. Conduct a ballot for election of officers.
  3. Discuss such matters as are raised by Members.

8. Election of Officers

  1. The President, three Vice-presidents, Immediate Past President, Secretary, Treasurer, Editor, Circulation Manager, Newsletter Editor, Webmaster and up to four additional Committee Members shall comprise the Executive Committee of the Society. They shall be elected in the following manner.
  2. Three months before an Annual General Meeting the Executive Committee shall select a Nominating Committee. (The group organising the foundation of the Society shall act as the first such Nominating Committee).
  3. The Nominating Committee shall nominate members for the positions of President, Secretary, Treasurer, Editor, Circulation Manager, Newsletter Editor, Webmaster and for two additional Committee Member positions. (The Immediate Past President shall be a Committee member ex officio). The Nominating Committee shall nominate three members for the position of Vice-President, each to be from a different part of the country. All nominations shall have the approval of the persons nominated.
  4. The above nominations of persons shall be presented at the Annual General Meeting. Additional nominations may be accepted at the meeting providing they are proposed and seconded by members present and the consent of the nominated Member is obtained.
  5. In the event of there being more nominations than needed to complete the executive Committee election shall be by ballot among Members present. The election of President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Editor, Circulation Manager, Newsletter Editor, Webmaster and ordinary Executive Committee Members shall proceed in the order given.
  6. In the event of a member of the Executive Committee resigning from his membership of that Committee the remaining members shall co-opt a replacement Executive Committee Member. In the event that the President resigns his post the replacement President shall be an existing member of the Committee.

9. Voting at General Meetings

Voting at General Meetings shall be by voice or show of hands at the discretion of the Chairman except that a ballot shall be taken for the election of the Executive Committee members when there are more nominations than required. A ballot shall be taken on other matters if requested by any members. The Chairman shall have both a deliberative and a casting vote. Voting on motions shall be by simple majority except as provided in 17.

10. Executive Committee Meetings

Executive committee meetings shall be held at not greater than four-monthly intervals. A quorum for such meetings shall be at least four Executive Committee members. All members of the Executive Committee shall be advised of the main items of business expected to be discussed at the meeting and invited to submit their view in writing in the event that they are unable to attend. Such written views shall not be deemed to constitute votes. The Chairman shall at the request of Executive Committee members living at a distance from the venue of an Executive Committee meeting conduct the whole or part of such a meeting by conference telephone. Voting shall be by simple majority except as indicated in 5(3) above. The Chairman of the meeting shall have both a deliberative and casting vote. The Executive Committee may from time to time set up sub-committees for specific functions and shall reserve the right to co-opt the services from time to time to other members to serve on such sub-committees or assist generally in the administration of the Society. In particular the Executive Committee may establish a Conference Sub-committee to manage a Conference.

11. Duties of Officers

  1. The President shall normally be chairman at all General and Executive Committee meetings and shall present a report to the Society’s Annual General Meetings.
  2. The Past President serves on the Executive Committee to preserve some continuity between successive committees.
  3. The Vice-president shall be responsible for maintaining interest in the society within their region and shall represent the view of members from their region.
  4. The Secretary is responsible for the recording of minutes of all proceedings at all Meetings of the Society and its Executive Committee and for conducting the correspondence of the Society.
  5. The Treasurer shall be responsible for keeping the accounts of the Society and to prepare balance sheets and financial statements and for banking operations and is responsible for maintaining a register of Members of the Society.
  6. The Editor shall be responsible for the editing and production of any newsletters, journals or other publications that the Society may decide to produce. The Editor shall have the right to establish an Editorial Committee to assist in assessing the merit of material submitted for publications.
  7. The Circulation Manager shall be responsible for distribution and promotion of publications of the Society.
  8. The Newsletter Editor shall be responsible for the production of the Society’s Newsletter.
  9. The Webmaster shall maintain the Society’s webpages.

12. Subscriptions

Annual subscriptions shall be determined from time to time by resolution of a General Meeting. There shall be two classes of membership: Member and Institutional Member. Subscriptions for Institutional Members shall be set at 3.0 times the Members subscription. Any member who does not pay the due subscription fee in a given year may be deprived the rights of membership until such arrears are paid.

13. Funds

Each financial period (one year) shall close on 31 July. At the close of such a period a duly audited statement of accounts and balance sheet shall be distributed to members prior to the next Annual General Meeting of the Society which will take place in the subsequent four months as provided in 6. The Society’s funds shall be deposited in bank accounts opened in the name of the society and the accounts shall be operated by the signatures of any two of the President, the Secretary, the Treasurer, and the Circulation Manager.

14. Auditor/Reviewer

The Committee at the first meeting of each financial year following the Annual General Meeting shall appoint an Auditor or Reviewer for the coming year.

15. Common Seal

The common seal will be held in the custody of the Secretary. It will be affixed to documents only with the approval of the Executive Committee.

16. Affiliation

The society may seek affiliation with such other organisations as is deemed appropriate by a General Meeting. In determining whether to affiliate the decision shall be based on whether the proposed affiliation will assist in fulfilling the Society’s objectives.

17. Amendments of Constitution

This constitution may be altered, added to or rescinded only at a General Meeting of the Society. Notices of motion to Change the rules must reach the Secretary at least one month from the date of a General Meeting that has already been scheduled. In the event of the Secretary receiving such notices at times when a General Meeting is not scheduled in the near future the Executive Committee shall of its discretion call such a General Meeting. All notices of motion to change the Constitution shall bear the signatures of two members. Any such notices are to be forwarded to members by the Secretary with the notice advising of a General Meeting. Modification of the Constitution will require a two-third majority of votes of members present at the meeting. No amendment shall be permitted if it in any way affects the non-profit status of the Society.

18. Disposition of Property

If any property remains after winding up or dissolution of the Society and the settlement of all the Societies debts and liabilities, that property must be given or transferred to another organisation that is charitable under New Zealand law or for some other charitable purpose recognised under New Zealand law. The recipient organisation shall be decided at the last General Meeting.