Saturday, May 14, 2011

Electing New Members to Executive Positions

There seems to be a lot of questions swirling about whether or not a person needs to be a PTA member of our unit to be elected into an executive board position.  One of the amendments to the Uniform Bylaws adopted at the 2011 Convention amended Article 5 Section 3(g) so it now reads as follows: To be elected to office a person must be a member of a PTA unit, but not necessarily the unit being elected to, at least thirty (30) days preceding the election, except as specified in Article 5, Section 3 (e) for newly formed local units and councils.  If elected officers are not currently members of our PTA, then 
        1.  How can we get them added to our bank account on July 1st?  
        2.  How will they be covered under our unit’s liability insurance until they become members?
        3.  How will our membership chair add them as officers in the WSPTA database?

It is correct that a person is eligible to be elected if s/he has been a member of any PTA for at least 30 days prior to the election.  That has long been the interpretation of this section of the Bylaws but the newly added language makes it clear.  Of course the person(s) so elected always have the option of joining your unit now and then again after July 1st, but that’s not necessary.  To answer your specific questions:

(1)    As long as the results of the election are in the copy of the minutes that is provided to the financial institution where the PTA’s account is held, there should not be a problem with having his/her signature added to the account on or after July 1st, when the term officially begins.  

(2)    The PTA’s liability Insurance coverage applies to anyone who is participating in an event on behalf of the PTA, not just to members, so again s/he should be covered.  Any questions along those lines can be addressed to AIM. 

(3)    The newly elected officer should not be put into the WSPTA member database as an incoming officer; instead email the information to to enter the information manually after the database for the 2011-12 fiscal year has been set up, which will happen shortly after July 1st.  The newly elected officer(s) can pay the membership service fee for your unit for next year’s membership whenever it’s convenient, although that should probably wait until after the start of the new fiscal year as well. Your 2011-12 membership chair should be careful not to enter the person’s name a second time when entering next year’s members.