The Constitution

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Milton Keynes Role-Playing Games Club Constitution

(Adopted 5th October 2004, last amended 1st July 2015)

Summary

We are a club for tabletop RPGs. Membership is open to everyone over 16. We operate on a cycle of 8-week games with fixed players followed by 3 weeks of ad-hoc games. We have a committee of Chair, Treasurer, and Secretary, though most decisions will be made by the club as a whole. If you want to raise an issue, please do so in a club meeting. If it is a significant issue (as decided by either you or the Chair), we have a formal process to ensure that it is properly considered before a decision is made.

1 Name

The name of the club is the Milton Keynes Role-Playing Games Club, commonly abbreviated to MK-RPG.

2 Aim

MK-RPG is a non-profit-making club that exists to provide a safe, friendly and secure environment for anyone in the Milton Keynes area to play role-playing games (RPGs). While the emphasis is on tabletop RPGs, other games and activities will be allowed, limited to interest and facilities, so long as the main focus remains on RPGs.

3 Membership and rights

Membership in the club is open to all. All members must behave in a polite and courteous manner at all times. All members are encouraged to support the development other members' role-playing skills.

Subject to legal and financial constraints, the club is open to people of all ages. However, the parents or guardians of members under 16 must be aware that the games played at the club may deal with adult issues, and that some children are not ready for this content.

Therefore, parents or guardians of club members under 16 must either accompany their children at all times in the club or give written permission for their children to attend unaccompanied. In addition, due to the greatly varied maturity of children under the age of 16, any under 16 who wishes to join the games must first come to three trial sessions (preferrably consecutive), during which time their maturity will be assessed by the existing group members as a whole. At the end of this trial period, a vote will be taken by the existing members about whether the under 16 is mature enough to handle the adult content often dealt with during the games.

No form of racial, sexual, religious, disability-based or other harassment or discrimination will be tolerated by the club. Penalties for such action may include banning from certain club activities or expulsion from the club, subject to procedures stated below.

3.1 Fees and Active Members

Fees will be set at the Annual General Meeting, and will normally be monthly payments, payable in advance at the start of each calendar month, to cover the expenses of the club. A member is considered active when they have paid their fees for the current or previous month and is not intending to leave the club. The Active Membership of the club consists of all active members and the Committee. Active Members may propose and second motions and vote at AGMs and EGMs.

A member may withdraw from the club at any time by informing a committee member. In such a case, the club will return the ex-member's fees on a pro-rata basis as soon as is feasible.

Members who are under 16, unemployed and claiming benefit, full-time students, or receiving a state pension will only pay 50% of the normal fees. Such members must be able to to prove their eligibility to the Treasurer.

3.2 New Members

We will welcome new members to the club at any meeting. Wherever possible, new members will be allowed to actively participate in a game. A member will not have to pay for the first two meetings they attend. After that, the member will pay their fees for the remainder of the month on a pro-rata basis.

4 Meetings

The club will hold weekly meetings in York House every Tuesday evening from 8.00pm to 11.00pm. The main activity at these meetings will be RPGs, as expressed in the club's Aims. There will be a strict no-smoking policy in force at these meetings. Snacks and drinks are permissible, provided these will not interfere with other people's enjoyment.

5 Rhythm of Events

The club operates on an 11-week cycle of games. "Long" games will run for the first eight weeks of the cycle. These games will have players allocated before the game starts, and this membership is expected to remain constant for the duration of the game. The remaining three weeks of the cycle will consist of a number of shorter games, organized in an ad hoc manner, plus up to 2 weeks overflow time as required to finish longer games (though over-running is strongly discouraged).

5.1 Proposal and Selection of Games

Allocation of members to games will be made in a fair and equitable manner in week 10 of the cycle. Selected games will start on the first week of the next 11-week cycle.

5.2 Game Leader

Each "long" game will have a nominated Game Leader who proposes, and is responsible for, that game (this will usually be gamesmaster for the game). The Game Leader may prohibit any club members from participating in a game, but must give a reason for the prohibition. The Game Leader's decision is final.

6 Decision Making

Decision making in the club should be by a process of discussion and negotiation leading to consensus among the members and possible ratification at a general meeting. Failure to build a consensus should be seen as a sign of failure in the club, and all members will take steps to ensure that a consensus is reached in future decisions. Significant decisions affecting the club (as determined by the Chair) must take the form of a formal proposal be ratified by an EGM. Such decisions include, but are not limited to, changes to this constitution, changes to membership fees, changes of time or venue for club meetings, the dismissal of Committee members, and the expulsion of members from the Club.

6.1 Proposing a Motion

Any Active Member may propose a motion to be decided by the club. The proposal must be made during a club meeting. The proposal must be seconded by an Active Member. At the time of proposal, the proposer must explain the motion and give a justification for why it should be implemented. The proposal must be expressed as a motion that can be accepted or rejected by a vote. The proposer must give a written copy of the motion and its justification to the Club Secretary within 24 hours of the proposal being made. The motion will be decided at an EGM to be held as soon as possible, but not within seven days of the proposal being made. This will normally be the next quorate club meeting. This delay is to ensure that all Active Members have an opportunity to consider the proposal before a decision is made.

6.2 Quorum

Two-thirds of the active members must be present at an AGM or EGM for its decisions to be implemented.

6.3 Voting

All decisions at AGMs and EGMs will be made by a vote. The Presiding Officer for the vote will be Chair, if present, or a Committee member. Neither the proposer nor the object of the proposal may be the Presiding Officer. The Presiding Officer will not participate in the vote. In the case of a tie, the Presiding Officer will have the casting vote, which must be used to preserve the status quo.

The Presiding Officer will conduct the vote and record the votes for and against. All active members present may vote. Votes will normally be by a show of hands. If a member asks for a secret ballot, the Presiding Officer will conduct the vote by secret ballot. A simple majority will decide votes unless expressly stated elsewhere in this constitution. Elections will be decided with a "first past the post" system.

If a proposal is approved by the vote, it will immediately come into force.

7 Committee

The Club will have a Committee of three members: Chair, Treasurer, and Secretary. The Committee is generally responsible for ensuring the smooth running of the Club. Individual Committee members have additional responsibilities, as outlined below. Candidates for Committee membership must be Active Members, must have their nomination proposed and seconded by Active Members, and must be elected to the post by the Club. In the case of prolonged absence or leaving the Club, an acting replacement must be elected, who will assume all the responsibilities of that member until their return or the next committee election.

7.1 Chair

The Chair has three main responsibilities. First, they must facilitate the free and open discussion of issues facing the club, including chairing AGMs and EGMs. Second, they must ensure that the club's policy decisions are put into practice. Third, where a change in policy is requested or expected, the Chair is responsible for collating and evaluating the various options and presenting them to the Club.

In the execution of their duties, the Chair is expected to consult the club membership. The Chair may not propose motions to the club.

7.2 Treasurer

The Treasurer is responsible for the financial assets of the Club. They are responsible for collecting and recording the fees from members, ensuring that all the club's dues are paid in a timely manner, ensuring that the club's financial assets are secure, and reporting on the state of the club's finances to any interested Active Member.

The Treasurer may approve expenditure on minor items for the club, such as stationery and ISP fees.

7.3 Secretary

The Secretary is responsible for recording and communicating information within the club. They must maintain an up-to-date list of the Active Members. They are responsible for making an accurate record of the business at AGMs and EGMs. They are responsible for ensuring that all club members are informed in a timely manner of significant information and upcoming events. This includes the details of proposals to be discussed at an EGM.

8 Annual General Meeting

The Club will hold an AGM within 13 months of the previous AGM. Proposals for items to be discussed at the AGM should be made in the usual manner, at least a week before the AGM. The agenda for the AGM will be:

  1. Chair's Report
  2. Treasurer's Report
  3. Secretary's Report
  4. Treatment of proposals from Club Members
  5. Dissolution of existing Committee
  6. Election of new Committee
  7. Any Other Business

9 Extraordinary General Meeting

An EGM will be called whenever a formal proposal is made to the club. The EGM will be held no sooner than one week after the proposal is made. The business of the EGM will be restricted to the proposed motion. The Secretary is responsible for informing all Active Members of the proposal and the date of the EGM. If the EGM is not quorate, the EGM will be delayed to the next club meeting. This delay will continue until a meeting is quorate.

During the EGM, the proposer will restate the motion and its justification. Other members will have an opportunity to respond to the motion or make other comments. When the discussion has ceased to explore new ground, the Chair will call a halt to the discussion and conduct a vote on the proposal.

10 Removal of a Committee Member

Any Active Member may, during any club meeting, propose a motion to remove a committee member from their post. The proposal will be made in accordance with the procedures given above. If the proposer objects to the nominal Presiding Officer for the vote, the nominal Presiding Officer will nominate another, mutually acceptable, person to be the temporary Presiding Officer for the vote. If the motion is passed, the Presiding Officer will oversee an election to fill the now-vacant post. This election should normally take place in the same EGM, but the Presiding Officer may delay the election until the next quorate club meeting.

11 Expulsion of a Member

Any Active Member may, during any club meeting, propose a motion to expel a member from the club. The motion must include the duration of the ban, which may be any period up to and including a lifetime ban. The proposal will be made in accordance with the procedures given above. If the proposer objects to the nominal Presiding Officer for the vote, the nominal Presiding Officer will nominate another, mutually acceptable, person to be the temporary Presiding Officer for the vote. This motion requires a two-thirds majority of the votes to pass. The expelled member forfeits any fees they have paid.

Keyholders

At any given time two members of the Club will hold keys to allow access to and locking up for the Stony Stratford building York House. These two members may or may not be on the committee.

Resposibilities

On taking up this possition the Keyholder must inform the York House office staff any details they require to hold about the person.

Any Keyholder requiring to leave the Club early will endevour to tell the other Keyholder that they must lock up the Building.

In the event of non-attendance of the Club the Keyholder will endevour to transfer the keys to another Club member before the next meeting.

The keys must be held in a manner that no one without prior knowledge will know which premises the keys belong to.

If the keys are lost then York House and the Committee will be informed immediately or as soon as is feasibly possible.