Bylaws Art. 9 – Committees

ARTICLE IX – COMMITTEES

A. Standing Committees

1. The entire Executive Committee and the chairpersons of the following standing committees shall be elected at the annual meeting from among the active members of the Church: namely, the Religious Education, Building and Grounds, Membership, Personnel, and Nominating committees and the Committee on the Ministry. The term of office is two years unless otherwise specified in these By-Laws.

2. There shall be the following appointed Standing Committees: Finance, Sunday Services, Denominational Affairs, Social Responsibility, Sharing and Caring, Endowment, Library and Archives, Social Functions, and Canvass. Each shall consist of a Chairperson appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee and, unless otherwise specified, as many associate members as said Chairperson shall appoint.

3. The Chairperson of every Standing Committee shall submit in writing an annual report of the activities and recommendations of his or her committee for each annual meeting of the Church.

4. To facilitate a smooth transition, the newly elected officers and committee members shall assume office on June 1st following the annual meeting and shall have the right to attend (without voting) any meetings held between the annual meeting and June 1st. Unless otherwise provided, the Church year shall run from June 1st to May 31st.

B. Executive Committee

1. Election. The Executive Committee shall consist of fourteen persons chosen from among the active members of the Church: four lay members; and ten ex-officio members (i.e., members of the Executive Committee by reason of their holding offices of the Church: namely the President, Vice President, Clerk, Treasurer and Collector and the chairpersons of the Religious Education, Building and Grounds, Membership, Music and Sunday Services, and Canvass Committees.) Two lay members shall be elected at each annual meeting for a two-year term. No lay member who has served a full two-year term shall be re-elected as a lay member until after the expiration of one year.

2. Powers and Duties

a. Seven members of the Executive Committee shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of committee business.

b. The Executive Committee shall fill vacancies in offices and said committee itself. Vacancies in the Religious Education Committee, the Building and Grounds Committee, and the Membership Committee shall be filled by their respective committee chairpersons, subject to the approval of the Executive Committee. Persons so appointed shall serve until the next annual meeting

c. The Executive Committee shall have general charge and management of the affairs and property of the Church and conduct of its business affairs, subject to such direction and control as they shall receive by vote of the congregation.

d. The Executive Committee shall incur no expense and enter into no contract involving the Expenditure of more than 2.5% of the current year budget without a vote of the Church with reference to any matter other than heat, emergency repairs or utilities of any nature.

e. They shall meet at least once a month, except during July and August, at the call of the President.

f. The Executive Committee may at any time create such special committees as deemed necessary or expedient and shall appoint chairpersons thereof. The chairperson of any such special committee may appoint as many associate members as he or she deems desirable.

g. The Executive Committee may at any time, upon the recommendation of the Religious Education Committee, appoint a Director of Religious Education.

h. Any member of the Executive Committee who without adequate reason is absent for three consecutive meetings of said committee shall be considered to have resigned and his or her office vacated. Such individual shall be so notified.

C. Religious Education Committee

1. The Religious Education Committee shall consist of six members: the chairperson, elected as outlined above in Article IX.A.1., and five other members. The five associate members shall be appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee from a list supplied by the Nominating Committee by the time of the annual meeting.

2. The chairperson of the Religious Education Committee shall represent the group on the Executive Committee for his/her term of office.

3. The Religious Education Committee shall have the general supervision and control of the Church School, the curriculum and activities thereof, and all other religious education activities and enterprises, subject to the direction and control of the Executive Committee and the congregation.

4. The Religious Education Committee shall have overall supervisory responsibility for the Religious Education Director (See Article X). The committee shall recruit, interview and make recommendations to the Executive Committee for the filling of that position.

5. Vacancies in the Religious Education Committee shall be filled by the Religious Education Chairperson subject to the approval of the Executive Committee. Persons so appointed shall serve until the next annual meeting.

6. One member of the Nominating Committee shall be appointed by the Religious Education Committee no later than October 1.

D. Building and Grounds Committee

1. The Building and Grounds Committee shall consist of six members: the chairperson, elected as outlined above in Article IX.A.1., and five other members. The five associate members shall be appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee from a list supplied by the Nominating Committee by the time of the annual meeting.

2. The chairperson of the Building and Grounds Committee shall represent the group on the Executive Committee for his/her term of office.

3. The Building and Grounds Committee shall have the general supervision and control of the Church premises and shall be provided such funds as may be appropriated in the annual budget. Said funds shall be disbursed for the maintenance and improvement of said Church premises, subject to the direction and control of the Executive Committee and the congregation.

4. The Building and Grounds Committee shall have overall supervisory responsibility for the Caretaker. The committee shall recruit, interview and make recommendations to the Executive Committee for the filling of that position.

5. Vacancies in the Building and Grounds Committee shall be filled by the Building and Grounds Chairperson subject to the approval of the Executive Committee. Persons so appointed shall serve until the next annual meeting.

E. Membership Committee

1. The Membership Committee shall consist of six members: the chairperson, elected as outlined above in Article IX.A.1., and five other members. The five associate members shall be appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee from a list supplied by the Nominating Committee by the time of the annual meeting.

2. The chairperson of the Membership Committee shall represent the group on the Executive Committee for his/her term of office.

3. The Membership Committee shall be responsible for developing programs to keep in touch with and respond to the needs of the existing membership, to attract and welcome potential new members, and to help those who join to become involved in the life of the Church.

4. The Membership Committee shall keep an accurate record of the Church Membership and shall submit such information to the Clerk annually and as otherwise required for congregational purposes.

5. Vacancies in the Membership Committee shall be filled by the Membership Committee Chairperson subject to the approval of the Executive Committee. Persons so appointed shall serve until the next annual meeting.

F. Nominating Committee

1. Election. The chairperson shall be elected as outlined in Article IX.A.1. above. One member shall be appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee, and one member shall be selected by the Religious Education Committee. Term of office is one year. The Minister shall serve as one member of this Committee.

2. Duties

a. The Nominating Committee shall present to the annual meeting a slate of nominees for the following positions: officers of the Church; lay members of the Executive Committee; chairpersons of the Religious Education, Building and Grounds, Membership, and Nominating Committees and the Committee on the Ministry. The nominees for the Committee on the Ministry shall be selected from a list of seven members suggested by the Minister. The Nominating Committee shall also present nominees for vacancies that may exist on the Executive Committee, including the chairpersons of the Standing Committees listed in Article IX.A. 1. The Nominating Committee shall present to the President a list of persons from which to appoint the associate members of said Standing Committees.

b. The proposed slate of the Nominating Committee shall be mailed to the membership at least two weeks before the election, for their consideration.

c. Other nominations, except for the Committee on the Ministry, may be made by any Active Member and must be accompanied by a written statement signed by the person whose name is to be considered. This statement shall indicate that he or she has read in the Job Description Book the duties of the office for which he or she is being considered and agrees to accept the responsibilities described therein if elected.

d. The Nominating Committee shall have as its responsibility the compilation and circulation of a Job Description Book to nominees. This Book shall be available at all times through the officers of the Church and members of the Executive Committee.

G. Finance Committee

The Finance Committee shall consist of the President, Vice-President, Treasurer, Collector, Canvass Chairperson and Endowment Chair.

H. Committee on the Ministry

1. The Committee on the Ministry shall consist of four members: a chairperson and three associate members. The chairperson shall be elected at every other annual meeting for a two-year term, and the associate members shall be appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee from a list supplied by the Nominating Committee by the time of the annual meeting.

2. The purpose of the Committee on the Ministry is to strengthen the quality of ministry within the congregation. It will serve as a support group for the Minister, and will facilitate communication between Minister and Congregation. The essential functions of the Committee on the Ministry are as follows:

a. To aid the Minister in carrying on an effective Ministry by being available for counsel.

b. To be available to Members of the Congregation on an ongoing basis for ideas and suggestions regarding the Minister’s performance of his/her duties, and to keep the Minister advised as to the nature of this feedback, with the main thrust of this being to strengthen and improve relationships between Minister and the Membership.

c. To interpret to the Congregation the nature and scope of the work of the Minister.

d. To consult with the Minister and submit an annual compensation recommendation to the Finance Committee prior to its drawing up of a proposed budget for the next Fiscal Year.

e. To work with the Minister on his/her continuing education program, sabbatical planning, or other professional development and to advocate such plans to the Executive Committee and congregation.

f. To plan and carry out, on a periodic basis, a program for Congregational evaluation of the Minister. Such evaluations will be made at intervals of at least every three years, or at any time by request of the Executive Committee or the Congregation. Evaluation shall be accomplished by procedures established by the Committee on the Ministry, in consultation with the Minister, and as approved by the Executive Committee. The results of the Ministerial evaluation shall be compiled by the Committee on the Ministry and made available in writing to the membership.

Endowment Committee

1. The Endowment Committee shall consist of four members: a chairperson and three associate members. The chairperson and the associate members shall be appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee from a list supplied by the Nominating Committee by the time of the annual meeting.

2. The Endowment Committee shall be responsible to make recommendations to the Executive Committee for uses of endowments of any nature at any time held by the Church.

3. Vacancies in the Endowment Committee shall be filled by the Endowment Committee Chairperson subject to the approval of the Executive Committee. Persons so appointed shall serve until the next annual meeting.

J. Library and Archives Committee

1. The Library and Archives Committee shall consist of five members: a Chairperson and four associate members. The Chairperson and the associate members shall be appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee from a list supplied by the Nominating Committee by the time of the annual meeting. The committee shall include the minister, a ministerial student, and a professional librarian and/or archivist, unless such individuals are unavailable or unwilling to serve.

2. The Library and Archives Committee shall:

a. Develop and maintain library materials relating to the spiritual, religious and historical foundations, as well as on-going practices, of Unitarianism, Universalism, and Unitarian Universalism, provided that the library may also include materials that are aligned with Unitarian Unitarian principles in the discussion of other religious traditions and of affiliated perspectives; and

b. Organize and maintain the archives of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Pittsfield to document the records and history of such church. The archives shall include, but not be limited to, official records of membership, dedications, marriages, funerals and deaths, and minutes of all congregational meetings.

K. Personnel Committee

1. The Personnel Committee shall consist of three members: the chairperson, elected as outlined above in Article IX.A.1.; the Vice President of the congregation; and one member of the congregation, appointed by the President with the approval of the Executive Committee. The term of office for the committee members other than the Vice President shall be three years, provided that the term for the first appointed committee member shall be one year.

2. The Personnel Committee shall develop and revise as necessary, in consultation with the appropriate supervisory committee, shall recommend to the Executive Committee, and shall maintain on file:

a. The job description for each employee of the congregation;

b. Procedures for the hiring of all employees of the congregation;

c. Procedures for the evaluation of all employees of the congregation; and

d. Procedures for the consideration and resolution of disputes among employees of the congregation and disputes between employees of the congregation and the committee responsible for the supervision or evaluation of each such employee.