As of April 18, 2015, the MCSB has new bylaws. You can view or download a copy of them here.
We had our old bylaws in place since before we had our first rehearsal in February 2004.
These bylaws began with another organization's bylaws, harvested off the internet, then modified with a "best guess" rewrite as to what the founders thought the band should be like. They were put in place so we could get our non-profit corporation status and file for IRS 501(c)(3) tax-deductible donation eligibility.
For that purpose, these bylaws worked admirably well. They also served us well for our first decade, when we operated as a private organization. However, over the years, we have found best-practice ways of operation that are not totally in compliance with these existing bylaws.
While we were a private organization, this didn't matter all that much. However, now that we are receiving Grant money (THANKS Kathy Dougan and David Schommer!), there is a possibility our operations might come under closer scrutiny.
Therefore, it was time to rewrite our bylaws, first to make them more specific and comprehensive, and second, to ensure our bylaws and the ways we operate are in compliance with each other.
For more than two months, everyone had the opportunity to review the proposed bylaws and comment on them, to offer corrections, amendments, suggestions, etc. Two attorneys in the band reviewed the bylaws and offered suggestions, which were incorporated. The Board of Directors all received printed copies of the proposed bylaws and were asked (directed) to read them carefully and offer their comments.
In the week prior to the board meeting on April 18, 2015, the board was reminded several times that we would vote on the bylaws at that meeting, and to be sure they had submitted any proposed changes.
At that meeting, the board voted unanimously to approve the bylaws.
Changing any organization's bylaws is a big deal, which is why we took such great care to ensure our new bylaws are of such quality that we can expect to keep them in place indefinitely.
This means they are written in such a way that we don't have to amend them each time we think of a better way to do something. To that end, we have built FLEXIBILITY into these bylaws as much as we can.
An example of this flexibility is found in Article 4, Section 2, where the bylaws only generically describe various officers' duties, directing that the specific duties be outlined in a separate document. This allows us the flexibility to alter officers' duties without having to pass an amendment to the bylaws.
Thank you to everyone who helped us get our bylaws in great shape.
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