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Bylaws of NASW/Texas-PACE

(NASW/Texas Political Action for Candidate Election)


Social Workers traditionally have been committed to improving the American life through voluntary association of a socio-political nature. The involvement of social workers in social movements and political processes has taken a variety of forms and has concentrated on various elements needing improvement in American society and government, depending upon many factors related within the profession’s development.

During recent years, social workers from the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) have sought to renew and strengthen their organized and professional focus in the political processes by forming a state voluntary association for action, know as NASW/Texas- PACE (Political Action for Candidate Election). The purpose of the following charter is to define a political action group for persons who support the purposes of the social work profession in Texas.

Article I: Name

A. The political-action committee for social workers in the state of Texas shall be formally called NASW/Texas-Political Action for Candidate Election.
B. The common designation for this group shall be the label NASW/Texas PACE or TPACE.

Article II: Purpose

A. NASW/Texas Political Action for Candidate Election, called NASW/Texas PACE, shall serve the following purposes:
  1. To promote NASW legislative policies by helping to elect and retain in office, state and local public officials and candidates who support the goals and objectives of the social work profession and the needs of those who are served by the social work profession in the state of Texas.
  2. To promote political education and full participation in the political process among members of the social work profession.
  3. To take such other and further action as may be necessary to accomplish the foregoing.
B. As a voluntary association without partisan affiliation dealing with support and opposition to candidates and issues, NASW/Texas PACE shall abide by the laws
governing such groups as defined in present or future laws for the state of Texas.

Article III: Membership

A. Any person making a minimum contribution to NASW/Texas PACE shall automatically become a member and that membership shall be renewable annually. Membership records shall be updated on an annual basis.
B. The Secretary/Treasurer shall be responsible for membership renewal and dues requests to be mailed on an annual basis, one month prior to the member's dues renewal date, and members not paying their dues by the end of the following quarter shall be dropped from membership.
C. The Board of Trustees shall have the power to establish additional dues categories as it sees fit.

Article IV: Board of Trustees

A. NASW/Texas PACE shall be organized through a Board of Trustees.
B. The Board of Trustees shall be composed of no less than seven members, at least four of which shall represent different geographic branches of the State Chapter of NASW. At least two members of NASW/Texas PACE will be current NASW/Texas board members. One member with dual NASW/Texas Board of Directors and NASW/Texas PACE appointments shall be appointed to serve as liaison to the NASW/Texas Board of Directors. The current Executive Director of NASW/Texas or her/his staff designee shall serve as an ex-officio, non-voting member of the Board.
C. The Texas Chapter Board of NASW will appoint the Board of Trustee Members:
  1. Appointments to the Board of Trustees will be made annually by the President of NASW/Texas with the approval of the NASW/Texas Chapter Board.
  2. The President of NASW/Texas with the approval of the NASW Chapter Board will appoint or reappoint a minimum of three members to the Texas PACE Board of Trustees on odd number years, and four members on even number years.
  3. The term of office shall be for three years for regular members and for one year for student members. Terms of office begin January 1 and end December 31.
  4. No Board of Trustee member may be appointed to more than two successive terms. The exceptions to this term limit are for those who serve with dual NASW/Texas Board of Directors and NASW/Texas PACE membership, as well as for those Board of Trustee members who are elected to leadership positions within NASW/Texas PACE. Under these two circumstances, a Board of Trustee member may serve one additional, successive term.
  5. Should a Board of Trustee member be unable to complete their term, the NASW/Texas Chapter President, with Chapter board approval, will appoint a replacement until the member's term expires.
  6. Appointments to the NASW/Texas PACE Board will be made according to NASW’s affirmative action principles.
D. The Board of Trustees shall meet annually, and at such other times as may be called by the President, Executive Director or staff designee with five days notice
to all members of the Board.
  1. At the first meeting of every NASW business year, the Board of Trustees shall elect its officers by majority vote and shall plan its activities for the year.
E. The officers of the Board of Trustees will be: President, Vice President, Secretary/Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer. Their duties are:
  1. The President will call and chair all meetings, coordinate all activities, and carry out any other duties voted upon by the Board of Trustees.
  2. The Vice President will serve as chief officer in lieu of the President as needed. He/She will also carry out any duties assigned by the President or voted upon by the Board of Trustees.
  3. The Secretary/Treasurer shall be responsible for the maintenance of all records of the Board of Trustees and shall provide oversight of expense and campaign contribution checks and other financial transactions signed by the Executive Director.
  4. The Assistant Treasurer shall automatically be the NASW/Texas Executive Director or her/his staff designee. The Assistant Treasurer, in cooperation with the Secretary/Treasurer, shall maintain all financial records and membership records and prepare all reports necessary to maintain the organization's accountability.
  5. Should a vacancy occur in the unexpired term of any officer, the office would be temporarily filled as follows: the Vice President would fill the vacant Presidency; the President shall appoint from among other Board of Trustee members to fill the vacant Vice President or Secretary/Treasurer position. At the next Board of Trustees meeting, a permanent replacement will be elected by majority vote for this vacancy.
G. A quorum for all meetings of the Board shall be a majority of the members appointed.
H. Unless otherwise stated, all votes of the Board shall be carried by the majority.

Article V: Board of Trustees Authority

A. The Board of Trustees shall have the power to design and promulgate a program of activities necessary and lawful in order to carry out the purposes of Texas PACE.
B. The Board of Trustees shall have the power to solicit and disburse funds to candidates seeking election to public offices in the state of Texas.
C. The Board of Trustees shall have the power to endorse or disavow candidates.
D. The Board of Trustees will vote upon all major policies and procedures governing funding solicitations and disbursements to candidates and methods for endorsing
or not endorsing candidates.
E. The Board of Trustees may appoint permanent and temporary committees to carry out various activities. Committees may make recommendations to NASW/Texas
PACE on activities and suggested endorsements.
F. The Board of Trustees shall primarily direct their activities towards state candidates.
G. The Board of Trustees may obtain administrative services from the State Chapter of NASW and shall charge such services to the costs of NASW/Texas PACE.
H. No member of the Board of Trustees or its duly authorized committee appointees shall be compensated for performing their duties except for reimbursement of authorized expenses in carrying out these duties.

Article VI: Board of Trustees Responsibility

A. Those persons with responsibility for signing checks, drafts, loans, notes, and other documents on behalf of the Board shall be the Assistant Treasurer, with one co-signature, from either the President, Vice President, or Secretary/Treasurer.
B. The Board of Trustees shall establish appropriate banking accounts for depositing all dues and contributions and shall have a system of documenting deposits and expenditures. All funds shall be maintained in bank accounts which are separate and apart from the funds of NASW/Texas.
C. The Board of Trustees shall have their records and account audited annually in conjunction with the NASW/Texas audit.
D. The Board of Trustees, with the aid of the Assistant Treasurer or staff designee, shall submit necessary reports on activities as required by the state of Texas.
E. The Board of Trustees may obtain fidelity bonds in such amounts as they determine are necessary.
F. NASW/Texas PACE shall regularly report on its activities to the NASW/Texas PACE membership and NASW/Texas board. Public disclosure of activities shall be in accordance with all applicable laws, and it shall primarily be limited to include reporting requirements of the Texas Ethics Commission or other applicable government agency.

Article VII: Financing

A. The fund to support NASW/Texas PACE shall be based upon voluntary contributions from NASW members as allowed under the state law.
B. The Board of Trustees, as defined in Article V, may develop and adopt programs for solicitation of funds as deemed necessary and proper, and costs of such programs shall be paid out of the organization's assets.
C. No contributor shall have any rights to/or vested interest in the funds held by the TPACE Board of Trustees by reason of their contribution thereto.

Article VIII: Liability

A. Board of Trustees members shall be liable only for their individual gross negligence or misconduct in the administration of the NASW/Texas PACE monies, willful breach of trust embodied in this document, or fraud.
B. No Board of Trustees member shall be held liable for any action taken or omitted in good faith, nor for acts of any agent of the Board of Trustees, nor for any act or
omission of any other Board of Trustee member, prior to the date of becoming a member. The Board is authorized to provide indemnification for any member of the Board from liability on any claims or proceedings instituted against him or her and arising out of acts described in this sub-section, and to hold such persons harmless from any expenses connected with the defense, settlement, or payment of monetary judgments on such claims or proceedings to the maximum extent of the Board's assets.
C. By vote of the Board of Trustees, legal counsel may be employed for the Board of Trustees; the costs of this counsel shall be a proper charge against the Board of

Article IX: Miscellaneous Provisions

A. NASW/Texas PACE shall continue to exist until such time as the NASW/Texas Board of Directors votes, by a two-thirds majority to dissolve the committee.
B. No section of these by-laws shall be construed to authorize or acknowledge any control by the Texas Chapter of NASW over actions taken by NASW/Texas PACE or to impose any responsibilities or duties upon the Texas Chapter of NASW for actions taken by the Board or its members during their term of office.
If any provision of these by-laws is so construed by a court or agency of the State of Texas, that provision shall be invalid, and the Board shall amend these by-laws in conformity with the requirements of Texas state law and regulations, to preserve the separate existence of NASW/Texas PACE.
C. The Board may vote to amend this charter by a two-thirds vote.
D. In the event that the NASW/Texas Board terminates NASW/Texas PACE, all of the remaining assets and property of the PACE fund shall, after payment of all liabilities and necessary expenses, be distributed to such organizations consistent with the purposes stated in these by-laws, and subject to statutory or other legal requirements of the state of Texas. Such final distribution shall be made by a majority vote of the NASW/Texas PACE Board.
E. Roberts Rules of Order shall guide the procedures and processes of meetings, unless a majority of members shall vote to suspend same.

Article X: Local Committees

A. Local geographical committees of NASW/Texas PACE may exist under this charter if local NASW/Texas branches so desire upon approval of the NASW/Texas PACE board.
  1. Local committees may recommend endorsements of local and state candidates to the NASW/Texas PACE Board. In no case shall a local committee make an endorsement of any candidate.
  2. Local committees may raise funds. Funds may be disbursed only by the NASW/Texas PACE board.
  3. Funds collected locally must be transmitted to the NASW/Texas office within three days of collection. Cash contributions must include the donor's name, address, employer, and occupation. Cash should not be sent through the mail.
B. Members of local committees shall be recommended by a majority of the Steering Committee of the local NASW branch, and approved by the President of the NASW/Texas PACE board.
C. Local committees may contract with NASW/Texas Chapter office for administrative services on a cost per item basis.

Adopted April 1983
Amended October 1983; Amended July 1989; Amended September 27, 1993; August 10, 1994;
January 1996; January 2005; January 2007; October 2007; April 2009.
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