§1: Name, Purpose, and Philosophy
The name of the organization shall be the Inter Neighborhood Council (INC).
The INC shall have as its purpose the promotion, maintenance, and enhancement of the quality, stability, and vitality or the residential neighborhoods of the City and County of Durham.
To accomplish its purpose, the INC shall research and take positions on issues affecting all residential neighborhoods and shall collect and disseminate information to stimulate awareness and interest in those issues.
The INC shall foster cooperation among existing neighborhood organizations and shall encourage the establishment of neighborhood organizations where none exist.
The INC shall work in a positive and cooperative way with City, County, State, and Federal government officials and with other public and private organizations to accomplish its goals.
The INC shall not endorse political parties. However, it may oppose or support legislative or administrative change in order to accomplish its purposes.
It is the intent of the INC to welcome as members any neighborhood affected by the decisions of the Durham City Council and the Durham County Board of Commissioners. Every qualified, identifiable, residential neighborhood lying wholly or in part inside the City of Durham, its extra-territorial jurisdiction, or the County of Durham shall be entitled to send one delegate and one alternate to the Inter-Neighborhood Council.
To be qualified for membership, each such neighborhood shall:
- have an ongoing, private, formal, and representative organization from a defined geographic area, composed of at least 40 households and accounting for at least 15% of the households in the area, the purpose of which may not be inconsistent with the purpose of the INC; or
- be approved for non-voting provisional membership in the INC while actively working to establish a neighborhood organization as described in (a) of this section.
A neighborhood shall be entitled to the privileges of membership only for so long as it qualifies for membership under Section 1 of this article. The Council will determine by majority vote any disputes relating to membership on the Council.
The President of the Inter Neighborhood Council shall review the membership annually and shall report to the Council on the qualifications of every neighborhood and its representatives.
Neighborhoods shall become inactive if they fail to pay dues and miss four consecutive delegate meetings. Inactive members are not counted as members for the purpose of a quorum. A neighborhood immediately becomes an active voting member upon either attending a delegate meeting or paying dues.
The fiscal year shall run from January 1st through December 31th, and dues for the upcoming year shall be due within 90 days of the annual meeting.
The Inter Neighborhood Council shall be governed by a council of delegates as provided in this article. Unless otherwise provided, all business shall be conducted by a simple majority of delegates assembled at any meeting, with each neighborhood having one vote.
The delegation shall consist of two members from each neighborhood, one delegate and one alternate. Delegates may be elected or appointed by the governing body of their respective neighborhood.
The Council of delegates shall have the authority and responsibility to:
- appoint the chairpersons of all standing and special committees. Upon the vote of two-thirds of the delegates assembled to conduct business, the power to appoint may be delegated to the President.
- appoint, employ, or otherwise engage all persons or firms who provide services to the Council.
- fill any vacancy occurring among the officers, except that the Vice-president shall become President if the president becomes unable to fulfill his or her duties as described herein.
- interpret the By-laws.
- amend the By-laws as provided for herein.
- establish a budget and membership fees, if any, and approve all expenditures.
- adopt by a vote of two-thirds of the Council delegates assembled, the official position of the Inter Neighborhood Council for all external dissemination or any general issue or matter affecting all neighborhoods.
- appoint a delegate or non-delegate to represent the Inter Neighborhood Council on a commission, board, task force, study group, committee, or other such group. Such a representative will be required to attend at least half of the INC meetings in a year so that an exchange of information is assured.
The President shall preside at all meetings of the Council of delegates and shall rule on any point of order or procedure. The President shall be the official spokesperson of the INC and shall execute its business as directed by the Council.
The Vice-president shall perform all duties as may be assigned by the President or the Council of delegates. The Vice-president shall discharge all the duties of President in the event the President is unable to fulfill the responsibilities of the office, and the Vice-president shall also be the President-elect of the INC.
The Secretary shall be the official custodian of all records of the INC, shall keep the minutes of all meetings of Council, and shall also conduct the correspondence for the Council. The Secretary shall perform other duties as may be directed by the President or the Council.
The Treasurer shall keep and account for all funds of the INC. All shall be deposited and maintained in a bank account in the name of the Inter Neighborhood Council. Funds shall be expended from the account only in a manner consistent with these By-laws and the direction of the Council.
Disbursement of funds must be made by the Treasurer or the President. All monies received shall be immediately delivered to the Treasurer, who shall immediately give a receipt therefore. The Treasurer shall give periodic reports of all transactions and shall prepare financial statements as directed by the Council.
Except for the Vice-president, who automatically becomes President, the terms of the officers expire upon the adjournment of the annual meeting.
The Past President will continue on the Board and offer counsel and support to the new President.
It is expected that officers and board members will regularly attend meetings. Officers and board members may forfeit the remainder of their terms and may be replaced under the following conditions:
- Any officer or board member who has three (3) unexcused absences of regular board and monthly delegate meetings within a one-year period of time;
- Any officer or board member who has six (6) absences, excused or unexcused, of regular board and monthly delegate meetings within a one-year period of time.
The Secretary shall keep attendance records for all meetings. When an officer or board member has become disqualified because of his or her attendance record, the Secretary shall notify the Board. The Board shall request the removal of the member and a new member shall be appointed for the remainder of the unexpired term.
The Council may from time to time establish such standing or special committees as it deems necessary or desirable to accomplish its purposes and duly adopted policies.
Whenever the Council establishes a committee, it shall give that committee a charge, and appoint from among the delegates a chairperson or co-chairpersons. The Council may permit persons who are not delegates to serve on any committee created under this section.
In addition to such other committees as the Council may establish, there shall be an Executive Committee (Board), composed of the President, who acts as Chair, Past President, Vice-president, Secretary, Treasurer, Newsletter Editor, and two Delegates-at-Large elected by the Council.
If for any reason the Council cannot take an action in a timely manner, the Board, with 5 members affirming the action, may take the needed action which will be reported at the next meeting of Council.
The Council of delegates shall meet at such times and places as may be necessary to accomplish the purposes for which the INC is organized. The Secretary shall give every delegate notice of a meeting no later than two days prior to such meeting.
Meetings of the Council may be called by the President or upon the petition of six or more delegates. Petitions for meetings shall be in writing and shall be submitted to the Secretary who shall, without undue delay, set a time and place for the meeting and notify the delegates.
The lesser of ten (10) delegates or a simple majority of active member neighborhoods shall constitute a quorum for the conduct of Council business. After two successive meetings at which a quorum is not present, those members who attend a third meeting shall constitute a quorum.
Every year during the month of September, the President shall call an annual meeting of the Council at which, in addition to other business, elections shall be held for the offices of Vice-president, Secretary, Treasurer, two (2) Delegates-at-Large, Newsletter Editor, and the President if necessary.
Also, the President shall report to the delegates on the past year's business and the condition of the Inter-Neighborhood Council. The Treasurer shall report on the finances of the INC including income, disbursements, and reserves.
The INC year shall end upon the adjournment of the annual meeting.
The procedure at every meeting shall be governed by the President in a manner consistent with the By-laws and general principles of fairness, courtesy, and the orderly dispatch of business.
The By-laws may be amended by a two-thirds majority of the delegates present and voting.
In the event the Inter Neighborhood Council becomes inactive or dissolves, all monies belonging to it after the satisfaction of its debts and accounts shall be paid to a community-oriented charitable institution in Durham which is approved by a majority of the member delegates at the time of its dissolution.
(Amended July 1997, September 2002, May 2006)