Statute of the International Association for the Study of Fossil Cnidaria and Porifera
project with comments / Tomasz Wrzolek / June 12th 2014

kindly corrected in meritorical and linguistic aspects by James E. Sorauf

I. The Association's objectives and composition

Article 1. The objective of the Association, named The International Association for the Study of Fossil Cnidaria and Porifera (abbreviation, IASFCP) is to unite researchers of all nationalities studying fossil Cnidaria and Porifera as well as those interested in this field for various reasons. Without involving itself in any way in the activities of its members, this Association sets its goal as a means of communification of its members in the exchange and dissemination of scientific information and documentation of research, and in encouraging study of fossil Cnidaria and Porifera.
comments Our reason for being, our "to be or not to be" is the exchange of information on, and promotion of, research on fossil sponges and corals; our symposia, and our newsletter are only means to attain this primary goal
1a. The duration of the Association is not limited. The location of its headquarters is the professional location of its President.

Article 2. The Association consists of individuals and additionally, legal entities. Any person interested in the Association's activities is welcome as a member. All members are equal, with the same rights and privileges. Legal entities may join the Association but do not have membership rights except that they are represented by delegates at the General Assembly.

Article 3. The Association is affiliated with the International Palaeontological Association (I.P.A.) and pledges to inform the I.P.A. regarding its statutes.
comments To be discussed... I will try to find out reasons for or against this point, so the members can decide at the Assembly... or maybe we will see this clearly earlier?

Article 4. Membership in this Association is ended:
a) through resignation or death of a member,
b) through termination by the Council for non-payment of membership dues or,
c) for non-conformity with the objectives of this Association, or any other serious reason, the member concerned previously having been requested to provide an explanation in matters of scientific (or personal) concern.

II. Administration and Operation

Article 5. The Association is governed by a Council including, a President, a Secretary (who also may function as Treasurer, and/or in case of urgency, as an interim President), the Newsletter (and the Association's page) Editor or Co-editors, and the Chairperson of the following Symposium (Incoming President). The President is elected in accordance with Article 6. The Secretary (and/or Treasurer), and the Newsletter Editor(s) are nominated by the President and approved by the General Assembly; the Symposium Chairperson is appointed by the General Assembly following a majority vote of those assembled, to occur at the periodical (preferentially quadrennial) symposium of the Association.
comments As it seems we must trim the IASFCP to make it small, low-level operating organization, so the Council in presented version is expected to be a small body of just few persons, controlled by the President and by the General Assembly

Article 6. The future President is to be nominated by the Council at least three months before a General Assembly set to occur at a symposium of the Association. Procedures for both nomination and election will be established and carried out by the Secretary. By custom, the President will be the organizer / convenor of the symposium at which he or she takes office but the Symposium Organizing Committee can recommend a different person for the office of President if it so desires.

[comments The article 7 of the current Statute is fully withdrawn; as it seems the small Council may promote goals of the Association as good as, or better than the big Council...]

Article 7. [old number 8] Exceptionally, if the provisions from Articles 5 to 6 are not satisfied, new Council members can be nominated and elected at a General Assembly (which only occurs at the quadrennial symposium) or by mail vote of members, arranged by the Council.
All terms of office begin and end at the end of each General Assembly. No individual should serve more than two consecutive terms.
comments with weakend restricion of multiple terms in the Council "should not" in place of "may not"...
Article 8. [old number 9] Exceptionally, for the smooth running of the Association, the Council is allowed to coopt a member for a limited time on a special task dealing with the working of the Association.

Article 9. [old number 10] The General Assembly is composed of the Association members present at a properly called meeting. It is convoked at the time of the symposium, to occur every 3 to 5 years (preferentially quadrennially).

Article 10. [old number 11] The Council can be consulted each time that one of its members finds it necessary. In case of an important problem, a mail vote can be taken.

Article 11. [old number 12] The methods of action by the Association are the following:
1. A Newsletter which is to be published on-line at least once a year by an Editor or Co-editors that are appointed by the Council. Current reports are to be published on-line promptly by the Editor (Co-editors) of the Newsletter. In case of a printed Newsleter, its publisher, location, and language are not rigidly fixed and will be the result of an agreement negociated by the Council and the Editor(s).
1a. Editor(s) of the Newsletter will invite the co-operation of regional and/or thematic correspondents, to enable comprehensive coverage of publications and research on fossil Cnidaria and Porifera.
comments point of special importance the project cuts the big Council, but meeting our goals requires strong action of correspondents, thematical and/or regional, who would support gathering bibliographic and other data for promotion of our achievements and further research
2. Periodic meetings of the Association, which are in the form of a symposium. This is to be held, in principle, approximately each 4 (or 3 to 5) years. The Symposium will be organized by the member of the Association nominated for this purpose.
2a. Proposals for the organization of the Symposium must be submitted to the Council at least 3 months prior to the current Symposium. Such proposals are to be voted on at that General Assembly or by mail.
2b. Arrangements for the next Symposium will be announced at the final session of the meeting. The Council is empowered to undertake any modification of such arrangements to improve the location and/or date of the future meeting, in the best interests of the Association.

Article 12. [old number 13] Each member must pay an annual membership fee, to be determined by decision of the Council. The Association is entitled to receive donations. The Council pledges to publish on-line an annual accounting (summary financial report), in the Newsletter of the Association and at each General Assembly.

Article 13. [old number 14] The organizer of the Symposium alone is enabled to establish the arrangements for organizing a meeting and fixing the participation fee for all participants.
Persons not belonging to the Association and wishing to participate in the activities of the Symposium are admitted and have the same rights as the participating members of the Association, provided they fulfill the conditions fixed by the organizer. However, Symposium participants who are not members of the Association are not voting members of the General Assembly, and do not participate in the governance of the Association.

Article 14 [old number 15] This Statute can be modified by a vote of the General Assembly, upon proposal by one of the Association members.

Article 15 [old number 16] Any decision voted upon by the General Assembly or by the Council must be adopted by a simple majority.

Article 16 [old number 17] Dissolution of the Association can be made by the General Assembly or by the association membership through a mail ballot.