1. The name of this organization is the Esperanto Society of New York, abbreviated ESNY. Its purpose is to facilitate the dissemination of knowledge about Esperanto, the International Language and to promote its use. ESNY is a not-for-profit, educational organization, which may apply for 501 (c) 3 status, under the IRS code. Although ESNY coöperates with other like-minded organizations, it is neutral concerning questions of religion, politics, and socio-economic theory.
2. Any person who agrees with the above preamble and pays the annual dues may become a member of ESNY. The calendar year (January through December) is the annual term of membership as well as the term of the officers and fiscal year of ESNY. The amount of annual dues may be changed by the unanimous decision of a quorum of the officers (see par. 3). Each member has the right to attend regular meetings, receive the official announcements from ESNY, vote for officers, stand for election as an officer if of age (see par. 11), and vote on questions as detailed herein. All votes by the membership take place at an official membership meeting, of which there are at least eight held per year. These meetings are announced in advance. A quorum of the membership is achieved when at least one-quarter of the membership is present at an official meeting. Any person’s membership may be suspended by a unanimous vote of a quorum of the officers, on the grounds of willfully causing harm to ESNY or the Esperanto movement. A secret vote of the membership on a suspension is held at the next membership meeting, and is announced in advance. The suspended member may be present at a defense at said meeting, after which he or she can be expelled from ESNY by a majority vote of a quorum of the membership, otherwise the suspension is lifted.
3. There are five officers of ESNY as listed below. A quorum of officers consists of at least three officers, one of whom must be the president or the vice-president. The officers meet at least twice a year, preferably more often, at a site and time convenient to a quorum of them. Each officer has one vote at such meetings. The officers may serve for any number of one-year terms. An office becomes vacant when an officer resigns, or is no longer a member of ESNY.
4. The PRESIDENT presides at meetings of the membership and of the officers, coördinates the official activities of the other officers and members, represents ESNY in an official capacity, certifies the counting of all balloting, determines when a quorum has been achieved, and sees to it that the other officers fulfill their duties and that the by-laws are adhered to. The president appoints people to fill vacancies in the offices, with the unanimous consent of a quorum of the officers.
5. The VICE-PRESIDENT substitutes for the president when the latter is absent from any official meeting. The vice-president becomes president if the president leaves office before the scheduled end of the president’s term of office. The vice-president also coördinates ESNY’s activities relating to the teaching and dissemination of Esperanto.
6. The TREASURER collects and disburses the funds of ESNY, including dues. The treasurer maintains the records of the funds, and the list of paid-up members, and has them at all times ready for the inspection of any officer of ESNY. The treasurer reports the finances of ESNY to the membership at least once a year at an official membership meeting. All funds are deposited in government-insured bank accounts. Except for regular expenses such as those for the official announcement, meeting expenses, postage, and education, no amounts of more than one-twentieth of the previous year’s receipts of ESNY may be disbursed without the consent of at least two-thirds of a quorum of officers.
7. The SECRETARY is responsible for the recording of the minutes of all official meetings and their publication. The Secretary also handles any needed correspondence of ESNY, and keeps its non-financial documents and records.
8. The INFORMATION OFFICER is responsible for arranging the program of each official membership meeting. The program should be directly related to the goals of ESNY. The information officer is also responsible for coördinating unofficial meetings of the membership. The Information Officer is also responsible for the transmission and/or maintenance of official announcements and all publications, electronic and otherwise, of the Society.
9. The vice-president, the secretary, and the information officer may delegate one or more of their official duties to another Society member, except for presidential stand-in duties. After the vice-president, the treasurer, the secretary, and the information officer, in that order, stand in for the president.
10. At least twice per year, each officer reports to the president on the state of the activities for which that officer is responsible. At least once per year, the president reports to the membership on the state of the activities of the Society.
Qualifications and Elections
11. Anyone who is and has been a member of ESNY in good standing for nine months, and who is at least 18 years of age, may become an officer by the following four-meeting procedure. At the third official membership meeting before the end of the year (usually in October), the president appoints a three-person nominating committee from among volunteering members, excluding him/herself, and preferably not from among the officers. The president appoints one of these three to serve as the committee chair, who organizes committee discussions. Each nominating committee member has an equal vote in selecting a nominee for each of the seven offices. The committee nominates one person for each office. At the second official membership meeting before the end of the year (usually in November), the committee chair makes a progress report to the members on the nomination process. At the last official membership meeting before the end of the year (usually in December), the committee chair reports the slate to the membership, and the president asks for other nominations from the floor. At that time, any ESNY member, including committee members and officers, may nominate any member, including him/herself, for an office. If there have been more than one person nominated for any office, the president arranges a secret ballot by the membership for that office. Any uncontested office is automatically filled by the nominee of the committee.
Ratification, Amendment, Dissolution
12. These by-laws become effective after a unanimous vote of a quorum of the officers, subsequent inclusion in the official announcement, and a two-thirds vote of a quorum of the membership at an official membership meeting at least one month after their publication. The same procedure is required for ratification of amendments to these by-laws or for the dissolution of ESNY. Any member of ESNY may propose an amendment to the by-laws or dissolution of ESNY to the officers. In the event of its dissolution, ESNY’s remaining assets go to the Esperanto-USA a not-for-profit national organization with similar purposes.
13. In order to effectuate the proposed changes of January 2009, a special election of new officers will be held as directed by the President.
Revised By-laws ratified February, 2009
Proposed by ESNY officers: 28-Sep-1993
Ratified by members: 17-Dec-1993