The Rye Conservation Society (RCS) unanimously voted to amend their constitution at a Special Meeting hosted at St Mary’s Church Hall on Thursday evening, February 28.
The new resolution was put forward by Chairman David Bookless following criticism of the chaotic voting procedure at last year’s AGM where he was elected as the new Chairman following John Griffiths’ retirement. David opened the meeting by explaining that last year’s election for the post of Chairman was the first such election the RCS has ever undertaken in its forty year history but it also demonstrated the current constitution’s shortcomings.
The changes to the constitution include the introduction of a secret ballot with printed ballot papers to allow members to vote in private on the day. In addition only fully paid up members will be allowed to vote in the future and new members cannot join on the day of the AGM (but members who have a lapsed membership can rejoin on the day if their membership has lapsed in the proceeding six months). An outline of the agreed changes can be found on Rye Conservation Society’s website.
Other issues that the committee will be considering in the coming year include whether to allow postal or proxy voting for those members who cannot attend the AGM. In addition they will continue to discuss whether to hold the AGM in the evening rather than during a week day. The next AGM will be held at 11am on Friday May 17 and attendance will be monitored to help decide if it should be moved to a more convenient day and time to allow members who work to attend.
The Special Meeting closed with a discussion on the current state of the membership. The Society has approximately 300 members and the Membership Secretary, Andy Stuart, said it would greatly help if members set up a direct debit to pay their annual subscription. The Chairman also reiterated that they would welcome anyone who wants to get more involved in the Society’s work. If you are interested in joining the Society to help with their conservation efforts, membership is only £6 (or £10 for a joint application) per annum and the application form can be downloaded here.
Image Credits: Kenneth Bird.