SOUTH LEEDS AERO MODELLERS SOCIETY CONSTITUTION AND RULES

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    • SOUTH LEEDS AERO MODELLERS SOCIETY CONSTITUTION AND RULES

      1

       

      General

      1.1

      The club shall be called South Leeds Aero Modellers Society (SLAMS) and will be affiliated to the British Model Flying Association.

      1.2

      The clubs principal aim shall be the promotion of safe and responsible model flying of all types

      1.3

      Alterations to this constitution can only be made at an Annual General Meeting or at a EGM called for that purpose. Any Proposed alterations must be submitted to the secretary in writing at least 14 days prior to the meeting.

      2

       

      Members

      2.1

      A “member” means any class of membership

      2.2

      The Committee has the right to refuse membership to new applicants

      2.3

      New members will be required to serve an initial probationary period of 6 months. During this time they will not be eligible to serve on the Committee and may have their membership terminated at the discretion of the Committee for unsatisfactory conduct

      2.4

      New members’ subscriptions shall be dependent on membership class, plus the joining fee as decided at the Annual General Meeting

      2.5

      Subscriptions are due by 1st January each year. Any member, who has not paid the subscriptions for the ensuing year by this date, in whole or in part, will not be permitted to fly until they have done so. BMFA membership must be in place before flying

      2.6

      Members who have allowed their membership to lapse for less than 3 Months will not normally be asked to re-apply for membership or pay the joining fee, but will be required to pay a full 12 months subscription. Reduced subscriptions for new members will apply from September when they will be halved. The Committee reserves the right to ask for a formal membership application if it so wishes

      2.7

      Members who have not renewed their membership by 3 Months will be deemed to have left the club and shall return their gate key to the Treasurer or LCC and a renewal after this period will be treated as a new membership application. Leeds City Council will be informed when members leave the club

      2.8

      All members must be members of the British Model Flying Association and must be able to provide evidence of such on request

      2.9

      A member may be made a life member for extensive services to the club. Life members can only be created by a majority vote of club members at an annual general meeting

      2.10

      All members, without exception, must comply with all club rules. Failure to do so may result in disciplinary action by the Club which may lead to dismissal

      2.11

      Members may invite guest fliers to the site on arrangement with the Committee but they must be BMFA insured and the club member must assume total responsibility for the actions and safety of the guest. Guests must fly under the supervision of instructors if their ability requires it, and such arrangements must be made in advance of the visit

      3

       

      DISCIPLINE AND SAFETY (see Appendix 1, for disciplinary procedure)

      3.1

      Additions and amendments to field safety rules and regulations can only be made by proposals at a General Meeting

      3.2

      All field safety rules and regulations will be reviewed annually, and will be considered binding for 12 months, excepting where urgent action is required. This action must then be ratified by the members at the next general meeting

      3.3

      Any complaint concerning any member must be made in writing and signed by the complainant(s). The written complaint must then be forwarded to the Secretary so that the matter can be addressed at the next Committee meeting

      3.4

      Where an allegation of misconduct is made against a member, the member may be suspended from all club activities while an investigation is carried out

      3.5

      The Committee may impose a suspension from club activities not exceeding 30 days upon any member in the event of misconduct. Any suspension must be accompanied by a verbal and/or written warning as deemed appropriate in accordance with Article 3.6

      3.6

      The Committee may consider removal of membership where conduct on the field or elsewhere is considered to be prejudicial to the club. Dismissal will be in accordance with the following procedure in order to comply with the laws of natural justice:

      3.6.1

      The member is to be given a verbal warning by an authorised Committee Member in which the member is made aware of his misdemeanour and what the member is reasonably required to do to make amends

      3.6.2

      If the member does not respond, the member is to be given a written warning by an authorised Committee Member to advise the member of his misdemeanour and what the member is reasonably required to do to make amends

      3.6.3

      If the member still fails to respond, the Committee should invite him in writing to meet with them at a previously agreed date and time to discuss the situation, advising they are considering withdrawal of his membership

      3.6.4

      If the member still fails to respond to reasoning or fails to attend without reasonable cause, the Committee can advise him in writing that his membership is withdrawn, stating the reasons why this decision was reached

      3.6.5

      When the member is advised of withdrawal of his membership, the member must be given the right of appeal. If the member opts to appeal, this will be to the Club membership at an EGM which the Committee would call on his behalf at a previously agreed date and time. The motion to uphold the membership withdrawal or reverse it must be in accordance with the voting procedures set out in the Club Constitution

      3.6.6

      In the event of gross misconduct, immediate dismissal without warnings may be considered but the member must still be accorded his rights to present his case to the Committee and be given a right of appeal in accordance with sub-paragraphs 3.6.3, 3.6.4 and 3.6.5

      4

       

      COMMITTEE STRUCTURE AND APPOINTMENTS

      4.1

      The Committee of the Club shall comprise of not more than 9 members

      4.2

      The Officers of the committee shall be, Chairman, Vice Chairman and Secretary, Treasurer

      4.3

      Any Committee member or member, who is involved in any organisational position within the Club, must hold membership of the British Model Flying Association

      4.4

      Committee officers and members shall be elected at the Annual General Meeting from written nominations received no later than 28 days prior to the meeting, to serve for a period of one year. The Committee will be elected by majority vote by paper ballot from members present. All fully paid up members and life members are eligible to vote

      4.5

      Should a committee position become vacant, the Committee may, by a majority vote, co-opt a replacement who will then serve until the following Annual General Meeting

      5

       

      COMMITTEE ORGANISATION AND POWERS

      5.1

      Members elected to office will have full voting rights at all meetings. In the event of a tie the Chairman will have a casting vote in addition to his initial standing vote

      5.2

      The Committee are authorised to carry out negotiations and make decisions in the interest of the club or on behalf of the membership where necessary without consulting the members. Approval from the membership at an ordinary meeting must be sought for expenditure greater than £100.00 other than payment to the BMFA or Leeds City Council

      5.3

      Each Committee officer is required to submit a sample of his signature for banking reference purposes

      5.4

      Money may only be withdrawn from the club funds by cheque signed by not less than two Committee Officers

      5.5

      The Secretary must be informed of any negotiations proposed by club members that could affect the Club as a whole and copies of any written correspondence must be submitted for record purposes

      5.6

      The Secretary will receive an annual honorarium to cover out of pocket expenses not covered under the normal conditions of withdrawal from club funds

      5.7

      No member of the Committee or Officer of the club may be a Committee Member or Officer of another model flying club

      5.8

      Any Committee Member or Officer wishing to resign must do so in writing

      5.9

      Any member of the Committee who is absent from three consecutive Committee meetings without reasonable cause will automatically forfeit his seat on the Committee

      5.10

      The Committee may pay accounts and incur any normal liabilities on behalf of the club

      6

       

      VOTING AND CONDUCT OF COMMITTEE MEETINGS

      6.1

      All committee meetings will be agenda’d and minuted. Minutes of committee meetings will be made available to members on request to the secretary

      6.2

      A quorum of any Committee meeting shall consist of a majority of Committee Members

      6.3

      All proposals must be seconded and voted upon. A majority vote of those present is required to carry any proposal

      6.4

      Voting will normally be by a show of hands, however a secret ballot must be taken should any committee member request that this be done. Proxy and postal votes will not be permitted

      6.5

      An audio recording of committee meetings may be taken by the secretary only, for the sole purpose of producing accurate minutes. The audio recording must be deleted once the written minutes are approved

      6.6

      Non committee members may attend committee meetings as observers by applying to the Secretary at least 14 days before the meeting. Any non Committee Member may be asked to leave the meeting subject to approval from the Committee

      7

       

      VOTING AND CONDUCT OF GENERAL MEETINGS

      7.1

      All general meetings will be agenda'd and minuted

      7.2

      A quorum of any general meeting is to be at least one third of the membership

      7.3

      All proposals must be seconded and voted upon. A majority vote of those present is required to carry any proposal

      7.4

      Voting will normally be by a show of hands, however a secret ballot must be taken should any member request that this be done. Proxy and postal votes will not be permitted

      7.5

      Amendments to proposals must be voted upon first

      7.6

      An audio recording of general meetings may be taken by the secretary only, for the sole purpose of producing accurate minutes. The audio recording must be deleted once the written minutes are approved

      7.7

      Non club members may attend Club meetings as observers as invited guests of a club by applying to the Secretary at least 14 days before the meeting. Any non Club member may be asked to leave the meeting subject to approval from the Committee

      7.8

      The Committee, through the Chairman has the power to ask a person to leave any meeting in the event of that person disrupting the meeting

      8

       

      ANNUAL GENERAL MEETINGS

      8.1

      A date for the Annual General Meeting will be decided each year by the Committee. At least 28 days notice of the meeting will be given in writing to all Club members.

      8.2

      Annual subscriptions and the joining fee will be decided at the Annual General Meeting

      8.3

      A competent individual (non-committee member) shall be elected by the Committee to carry out an independent examination of the accounts every 3 months the first in March to verify that the balance sheet is correct and fairly represents the expenditure and receipts of the club, its assets and its liabilities

      9

       

      EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL MEETINGS

      9.1

      The Secretary will convene an Extraordinary Committee Meeting within 14 days on request from any officer of the Committee, stating the business to be discussed

      9.2

      The Secretary shall convene an Extraordinary General Meeting of the club by a resolution of the Committee stating the business to be brought before the meeting, of which 28 days notice has been given to all members in writing stating the business to be discussed

      9.3

      The Secretary shall convene an Extraordinary General Meeting of the club on receipt of a request in writing signed by not less than 6 members of the club, stating the business to be brought before the meeting

      9.4

      The meeting must be called within 28 days of request and 28 days notice must be given to all members in writing stating the business to be discussed

      9.5

      When a request for a meeting is made in accordance with Article 9.3 and it is not called within 28 days, the requisitioners may themselves convene an Extraordinary General Meeting of the Club by giving 28 days notice in writing to all members, duly setting out the purpose for which the meeting was called. Any resolutions passed at such a meeting shall have the same force and effect as if they were passed at a meeting convened by the Committee

      10

       

      INSURANCE AND INDEMNITY

      10.1

      The club will hold both Civil and Employers Liability Insurance, provided through affiliation to the BMFA

      10.2

      The club will indemnify all committee officers and committee members if they incur any liability on behalf of the club

      10.3

      In the event of a Committee Member being awarded damages or costs in the course of proceedings taken by him in his representative capacity, such damages or costs will belong to the Club and not the Committee Member personally and upon receipt that Committee Member will pay them to the Club Treasurer

      10.4

      When there is a joint meeting between SLAMS and another club, the participating club must be able to provide evidence of adequate insurance cover well in advance of the event

      11

       

      DISSOLUTION OF THE CLUB

      11.1

      Should it be considered necessary or desirable to dissolve the Club, the Committee will call an Extraordinary General Meeting. Should a quorum fail to appear, the meeting will be adjourned and a further EGM must be called within 14 days. The second meeting will proceed even if a quorum is not present and the motion will then be carried by a simple majority vote

      11.2

      On dissolution and after the sale of assets, settlement of all outstanding debts and the refund of subscriptions for the remaining part of the year to the paid up to members; the funds remaining will be distributed equally to current club members with continuous membership of 3 years or greater

      12

       

      FLYING, FIELD and SAFETY RULES

      12.1

      The Committee, Officers and Instructors, will be responsible for the running of the flying field at all times. Appointment to the position of Instructor or Examiner can only be made by a Committee decision

      12.2

      No flying to commence before 10:00 must cease by 21:00 on any day. With the exception of Sundays when flying is not to commence until 11.00am

      12.3

      Membership cards are to be carried at all times as proof of possessing insurance and a Park Permit

      12.4

      All members to pass BMFA 'A' certificate of the discipline/s they wish to fly before flying unsupervised on the club flying field, with the exception of Gas Turbines which require the Pilot to pass BMFA ’B’ certificate

      12.5

      Children are not permitted in the 'pits' area with the exception of a members child under their personal supervision actively being taught to fly

      12.6

      Models must not be taxied into or out of the pits area

      12.7

      A model in the pits area must be physically restrained if the engine is running

      12.8

      Propellers must not be used that have been damaged in any way

      12.9

      All engines are to be adequately silenced. And must not exceed the current Department of the Environment noise emission limit

      12.10

      The direction of take-off should not be towards the pits area or any spectators. Allowance must be made for the 'swing' of some aircraft on take-off

      12.11

      No model should be flown over the pits nor any area where other sports are taking place

      12.12

      Due regard must be paid to members of the public walking across the Clearings. Landings must be adjusted if necessary so as to avoid any possibility of accident

      12.13

      Modellers shall carry out "Pre Session flying model checks and "Checks before each flight" as described in the BMFA handbook

      12.14

      All models should carry details of identity, phone or BMFA number of the owner

      12.15

      Modellers vehicles should remain in the designated parking area

      12.16

      Harnesses designed to hold individual loose cells should not be used for radio receivers in power models

      12.17

      The BMFA safety rules are to be accepted in their entirety as part of the SLAMS

      12.18

      No model over 7Kg without fuel to be flown, in accordance with Leeds City Council Bye Law

      12.19

      All Committee members assume a shared role as Safety Officers and are empowered to challenge members and cease any activity at their discretion

      12.20

      All Disputes within the Club to be settled by the Committee

      12.21

      Access to the flying site is through a locked gate within Middleton park, the key for the gate is obtained from Leeds city council with a signed form from Treasurer and a refundable deposit

      12.22

      The track from within Middleton park has a speed restriction of 5mph and shall be adhered to

      12.23

      Any member whose flying standards drop below the minimum requirement solo standard will be required to rejoin the training scheme until the desired standards of flying are met

      12.24

      All members must observe field discipline and comply with the Air Navigation Order, all relevant BMFA safety codes as contained within the BMFA Members’ Handbook , ANO's 240 and 241 and Civil Aviation publication (CAP) 658

      12.25

      On matters of field safety needing an immediate decision, the responsibility lies with instructors or a member of the committee in that order. Any instructions must be accepted without dissent. However, should a member believe the instructions to be wrong, then the member should bring this to the attention of the Committee through Article 3.0 of the Constitution

      12.26

      Any pilot not holding their solo qualification for the type of aircraft they are flying must not fly without the supervision of an instructor or their specially appointed deputy if the instructors are absent from the field. If no instructors are present at the site, any member holding the BMFA ‘A’ Certificate may act as an appointed deputy until an instructor arrives

      12.27

      Due consideration must be given at all times to trainee or novice pilots in the circuit. In the event that the pleasure or concentration of a pilot is affected by the flying style of another, precedence will be given to the pilot who was airborne first. Intimidating flying of any sort is not permitted

      12.28

      No more than 5 aircraft shall be airborne at any one time

      12.29

      All flying is permitted in the designated areas only. Members are to observe the "No fly zones" on the diagram below

      12.30

      All pilots must observe the established flight line and stand in the designated area whilst flying. Any variation to suit daily conditions may be made by the Club’s safety officers. Any spectators must remain in the spectators’ area whilst flying is in progress

      12.31

      Any person wishing to enter or cross the runway area must seek clearance from any pilots flying at the time before doing so

      12.32

      All vehicles must be parked in the designated area only

      12.33

      Transmitters are not allowed to be switched on in any other part of the park except the pits, flight line and the helicopter area

      12.34

      Members using 2.4GHz systems

      No peg board is required if only 2.GHz radio systems are being used

      12.35

      Members using 35MHz radio systems.

      For 35mhz systems the frequency allocation system in use is the "Peg off" pegboard.

      On arrival at the pits area, members using 35Mhz are asked to find out if anybody else is using the same channel as themselves. If so, liaise with them on channel sharing.

      Other than when the frequency pegs are not available, members using 35Mhz transmitters must not be switched on without first obtaining the correct peg for your channel.

      Pegs must be returned when not actively being used. Where more than one member is using the same channel, each one will be allowed 20mins "peg" time.

      Before switching on, the pilot must ensure that he/she is operating on the frequency the member believes he/she is on and must display the appropriate frequency pennant on the transmitter.

      35 MHz frequency numbers must be called out before the transmitter in question is switched on.

      All 35MHz transmitter aerials must remain retracted unless the model is being flown. The flight is defined from the point of release to when the engine is stopped or the model is restrained

      12.36

      Transmitters should not be taken away from the flight line when retrieving an aircraft, unless to do so would aid retrieval of the model. In this instance the matter should be brought to the attention of the safety officers so that this may be carried out without the risk of over-flying the transmitter

      12.37

      Should an aircraft go out of control, the first priority must be the safety of persons with the second being avoidance of damage to property. A warning is to be shouted by the pilot which is to be taken up by other members

      12.38

      Before starting an engine the model must be suitably restrained either by a tether or by an assistant

      12.39

      Models having their engines run-in on the ground must not be left unattended whilst the engine is running

      12.40

      It is advised that all new or repaired models should be checked by a competent member. All models are subject to random safety spot checks which will be carried out by an instructor. If in his opinion a model is unsafe to fly or does not conform to Club rules, it will be grounded until rectified

      12.41

      All operational fail-safes in use on powered models operated from our Club site must set the throttle to tick-over, not hold, (stopped in the case of electric power) regardless of the other control operations governed by the failsafe. Fail-safes are to be checked prior to flight by switching the transmitter off whilst the model is restrained

      12.42

      No smoking is permitted in the vicinity of inflammable fuels and materials

      12.43

      Children must be closely supervised at all times and must not be allowed to run around the pit area or runways

      12.44

      Any incident involving a third party or another member must be reported to the Committee

      13

       

      GUIDE ON CARING FOR JUNIOR MEMBERS

      13.1

      A Junior Member is defined as being less than 18 years of age

      13.2

      A responsible adult is defined as a parent / guardian

      13.3

      Junior members must be supervised at all times by their parent / guardian

      13.4

      Junior members under the age of 14 years shall not start an engine or carry a model with the engine running unless they are supervised by the instructor with the parent / guardian in attendance

      13.5

      Should a member discover a junior member is unsupervised a member must assume responsibility for the junior member’s safety in the first instance. The situation should then be rectified as soon as possible by seeking out the junior member’s parent/guardian. Any instance of such an occurrence is to be reported to the Committee as soon as possible

      13.6

      This Club does not undertake to supervise junior members other than for the actual act of model aircraft flying and associated pre-flight and post-flight procedures

      13.7

      The membership form must be countersigned by the parent/guardian if the applicant is under 18 years of age, thereby signifying you accept the conditions of junior membership

      APPENDIX 1

      Disciplinary Procedure guidance

      Minor faults or shortcomings in behaviour should normally be dealt with informally by a committee member with a view to reaching agreement on the improvement required. Informal warnings should not form part of the formal disciplinary procedure and the formal procedure would not be followed before an informal warning is given. If, however, the problem persists or if the matter is more serious, action under the formal disciplinary procedure outlined in the constitution should normally be taken.

      The disciplinary procedure is intended to provide a formal framework to deal with the situation where an individual’s conduct falls below acceptable standards and to ensure fair and consistent treatment of all members in such circumstances. The procedure outlined is a good practice guide on how clubs should deal with disciplinary issues.

      Invitation to a meeting

      The committee should set out in writing to the member, the alleged conduct or other circumstances which have led them to contemplate formal action or dismissal and the member should be invited to a meeting to discuss the matter.

      Disciplinary meeting

      The meeting should take place before any action is taken (other than suspension, in the event of alleged gross misconduct or police investigation, to enable a full investigation to take place).

      The meeting should not take place until:

      (i) the member has been informed of the basis for the grounds given in the original notice of formal action or dismissal and

      (ii) the member has had a reasonable opportunity to consider their response to such information.

      At the meeting the committee should explain the complaint against the member concerned and go through the evidence that has been gathered.

      The member must take all reasonable steps to attend the meeting.

      After the meeting the member should be informed in writing of the committee’s decision and their right of appeal against such decision to the members at a general meeting if they are not satisfied with it.

      Appeal

      If the member wishes to appeal they should inform the secretary in writing within the time frame stated in the decision notice.

      The member should set out specific reasons for the appeal.

      The Secretary should call an Extraordinary General meeting of the club to the hear the appeal

      The member must take all reasonable steps to attend the meeting.

      The appeal general meeting may take place after the disciplinary action or dismissal takes effect.

      After the appeal general meeting the member must be informed of the general meetings final decision.

      At any meeting under the disciplinary procedure the member concerned should be given the right to be accompanied by another club member to act in a supporting capacity but such companion may not usually answer questions on behalf of the member subject to the procedure.

      The member concerned also has the right to call witnesses or ask questions of any witnesses called by the committee.

      General principles for the operation of the disciplinary and dismissal procedure:

      • •Formal disciplinary action should not normally be taken until the matter has been investigated.
      • •Where an allegation of misconduct is made against a member, the member may be suspended from all club activities while an investigation is carried out.
      • •The member should be informed that suspension is a neutral act, that it is not a disciplinary penalty and does not imply guilt.
      • •The member should be advised of the allegations against them and have an opportunity to state their case before any formal disciplinary decision is made.
      • • The member should be provided, where appropriate, with written copies of evidence and relevant witness statements in advance of a disciplinary meeting.
      • •At every stage of the formal disciplinary procedure, the member will have a right to be accompanied at any disciplinary meeting by another club member.
      • •A member should not be dismissed for a first breach of the rules, except in the case of gross misconduct, when the penalty will normally be immediate dismissal.
      • • The member concerned will have the right to appeal against any formal disciplinary penalty.
      • • Although the disciplinary penalties which may be imposed under this procedure will normally be imposed in the order set out in the constitution, the procedure may be commenced at any stage if the seriousness of the members’ alleged misconduct justifies this.

      Disciplinary sanctions

      As part of any disciplinary procedure, where the committee considers it appropriate to do so, they may impose a disciplinary sanction, which is a penalty. These will generally take the form of some type of warning:

      • • Verbal warning notice if conduct does not meet acceptable standards, a member may be given a formal verbal warning. This should set out the conduct problem, confirmation of improvement required and time scale for improvement to be made, together with the assistance to be provided to meet the objectives. A record of the verbal warning will be kept but the warning will be disregarded after usually a six month period (the time frame is dependent on the committee’s decision) provided conduct has been satisfactory.
      • • Written warning If the offence is more serious or if there is insufficient improvement after a verbal warning or if a further broadly similar offence occurs whilst a verbal warning remains in force, a written warning may be given. This will set out the nature of the conduct problem and confirmation of improvement required and time scale for improvement to be made, together with the assistance provided to meet the objectives. The warning should also inform the member that should your conduct fail to improve or you commit any further disciplinary offence over the next twelve months, (the time frame is dependent on the committee) then you will be issued with a final written warning. The written warning will be kept on file, and the member should be informed after what time period it will be disregarded providing their conduct, attendance or performance has been satisfactory.
      • • Final written warning If there is still insufficient improvement after a verbal and/or written warning has been issued or if the misconduct is sufficiently serious to warrant only one written warning, a final written warning will be given. This will provide details of the complaint, the improvement required and the timescale for the improvement. It will also warn that a failure to improve or any further disciplinary offences over the next period referred by your employer may lead to dismissal or some other action short of dismissal. The final written warning will be kept on file and the member should be informed when the warning will be disregarded provided your conduct, attendance or performance has been satisfactory.

      Dismissal or other sanction If there is still further misconduct or a failure to improve conduct the final stage in the procedure may be dismissal.

      Examples of misconduct:

      Examples of misconduct which may lead to disciplinary action being taken include, but are not limited to:

      • • Failure to comply with field safety rules
      • • Breach of club policies and practices

      Examples of gross misconduct:

      The club may consider some types of misconduct to be so serious that a disciplinary warning would be an insufficient penalty. Such offences are known as offences of gross misconduct.

      Where the offence is one of gross misconduct the normal penalty will be dismissal without a prior warning being issued (summary dismissal).

      Dismissal for gross misconduct will not normally occur until a disciplinary meeting has taken place.

      Matters which may justify summary dismissal include, but are not limited to:

      • •Dishonesty, theft and fraud from the club or its members.
      • •Deception, for example making untrue statements in membership applications or falsifying expenses incurred on behalf of the club, etc.
      • •Vandalism or sabotage of club equipment and property.
      • •Fighting, or seriously disruptive behaviour or offensive or abusive language.
      • •Serious misuse of computer, email and internet systems, including posting to club websites or emailing pornographic, offensive or obscene emails to members.
      • •Misuse of club financial or other confidential club information.
      • •Acts of bullying, harassment or discrimination.
      • •Model flying under the influence of drinks, illegal drugs or other intoxicants.
      • •Misconduct which may bring the club into disrepute.
      • •Serious breaches of the clubs policies, procedures and safety rules.
      • •Deliberate or serious damage to the clubs/landowners property or causing loss, damage or injury through serious negligence.
      •Any criminal offence carried out at the club site or during club meetings/events where such offence impacts or may impact upon the club