For God and Country, we associate ourselves together for the following purposes: To uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America; to maintain law and order; to foster and perpetuate a one hundred per cent Americanism; to preserve the memories and incidents of our associations in the Great Wars; to inculcate a sense of individual obligation to the community, state and nation; to combat the autocracy of both the classes and the masses; to make right the master of might; to promote peace and good will on earth; to safeguard and transmit to posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy; to consecrate and sanctify our comradeship by our devotion to mutual helpfulness.
Section 1: The name of this organization shall be Morton Grove Post Number 134 the American Legion, Department of Illinois.
Section 1: The American Legion is a civil body. Membership therein shall neither increase nor decrease liability to military or police service. Former service rank does not exist in the Legion.
Section 2: This Post may participate in bringing about the correct solution of public policies in a non-political manner, but shall not disseminate partisan principles nor promote the candidacy of any person seeking public office, nor participate as an organization in any controversy between labor organizations and employer's; nor in any disputes, questions, or matters except such as are defined in the preamble hereto. Any elective office in this Post shall become vacant whenever the incumbent thereof shall by petition, nomination, or otherwise become a party or non-party candidate for, or the holder of, any elective public office in any political party at a primary, a special, or a general election.
Section 1: Eligibility for membership in this Post shall be governed by the provisions of the National Constitution of the American Legion.
Section 2: There shall be no form of membership except active membership.
Section 3: (a) No person may be a member of this Post while a member of any other post; nor may any member of this Post join another Post except by proper transfer from this Post according to the prevailing policy of the National Organization of the American Legion.
(b) This Post shall not accept for membership, any person who, at the time of application for membership, is under suspension or expulsion from any other Post; unless, and until, he has conformed with the By-Laws of the Department of Illinois governing such matters.
Section 1: The officers of this Post shall consist of:
(a) a Post Commander, a Senior Vice Commander, a Junior Vice Commander, a Second Junior Vice Commander, and a Finance Officer, who shall be elected annually by the Post.
(b) a Post Adjutant, an Assistant Post Adjutant, a Chaplain, a Service Officer, a Sergeant-at-Arms, a Post Historian, and such other officers as the Commander deems necessary for the proper functioning of the Post, shall be appointed annually by the Post Commander immediately upon his election to office,
(c) All Post officers shall hold their respective offices until their respective successors shall have been installed or appointed.
Section 2: Nominations and election of officers shall take place annually at a regular Post meeting, not less than 30 days, nor more than 60 days prior to the Department of Illinois annual convention.
Section 3: No member may succeed himself as Commander of the Post.
Section 4: Every member of the Post who is in good standing shall be eligible to hold any office in the Post, except as provided in Section 3 thereof.
Section 5: (a) The elective officers of this Post shall be installed in their respective offices by a Past Commander immediately after their election to office,
(b) A public installation of all officers may be held at the discretion of the Post.
Section 6: In the event of a vacancy in any elective office due to resignation, inability to act, or any other cause, the Post Commander, or the acting Commander, shall order an immediate and special election to be held to fill the vacancy.
Section I: The POST COMMANDER shall preside at all meetings of the Post and have general supervision over the business and affairs of the Post, and shall be the chief executive officer of the Post. He shall approve all orders directing disbursements of funds and shall make an annual report covering the business of the Post for the year last past, and recommendations for the ensuing year, which shall be read at the annual election meeting. He shall perform such other duties as the Post may direct. He shall be "ex officio" a member of all committees. He shall be bonded in an amount equal to the net worth of the Post at the time of his election to office, the premium thereof being paid by the Post.
Section 2: The SENIOR VICE COMMANDER shall assume and discharge the duties of the office of Post Commander in the absence or disability of, or when called upon by, the Commander.
He shall be charged with maintaining the numerical strength of the Post membership through effective drives for membership renewals and new members as directed by post policy; he shall notify all members of dues due and payable through notice, and/or personal solicitation; he shall require submission of proof of eligibility by applicants for membership, before proposing them as candidates for the consideration of members at a regular meeting of members. He shall render regular reports on the numerical strength of the Post, and on the deliberations of the Executive Board of which he shall be the presiding chairman.
Section 3: The JUNIOR VICE COMMANDER shall assist the Post Commander and the Senior Vice Commander in all of their duties, be able to replace them should they be absent, and he is charged with the responsibility of providing entertainment for the Post.
Section 3 (a): The SECOND JUNIOR VICE COMMANDER is charged with the responsibility of arrangements for entertainment and refreshments at all regular and special meetings. He shall assist the Junior Vice-Commander in the discharge of that officer's duties, familiarize himself and keep posted on the plans of the current year and be prepared to take over the responsibilities of the office of Junior Vice Commander in the event of emergency or disability of that officer.
Section 4: The FINANCE OFFICER shall receive all monies due the Post and deposit them safely in a depository approved by the Post; keep a correct account between the Post and its members; and notify members of monies due and payable. He shall take care of all financial business between the Post and the Department and National Headquarters. He shall forward to the Department Headquarters the Department and National Dues for each member as collected, but shall not otherwise disburse any funds of the Post except upon proper authority, power, and direction of the Post as spread upon the minutes of a regularly convened meeting. He shall be bonded in an amount equal to the net worth of the Post at the time of his election to office, the premium thereof being paid by the Post. He shall report at each regular meeting all monies received and disbursed since the last meeting. At the expiration of his term of office, he shall make a full and complete report of his office to the Post and deliver to his successor all books, properly audited, and all other Post property in his possession. The financial year end audit shall be held between July 1 and the next regular post meeting at which time the audit committee chairman shall give the audit report. Changed February 2004.
Section 5: The POST ADJUTANT shall have charge of and keep a full and complete record of the proceedings of all meetings, keep such records as the Department and National Organizations may require, tender reports of membership annually, or when called upon at a meeting, handle all Post correspondence; he shall maintain a complete and accurate membership mailing list, utilizing post office services to keep mailing list to-date and accurate; he shall be responsible for the mailing of monthly meeting notices and such other routine or special notices as may be required. He shall complete and issue membership cards for which the proper amount in dues has been collected and received.
Section 5: (a): The ASSISTANT POST ADJUTANT shall assist the Post Adjutant when needed and be prepared to assume the duties of that office, in the event such becomes necessary.
Section 6: The SERVICE OFFICER shall assist all ex-servicemen in their claims pertaining to their participation in the service, as well as report and visit sick comrades.
Section 7: The POST CHAPLAIN shall be charged with the spiritual welfare of the Post comrades and will offer divine but non-sectarian services in the event of dedications, funerals, public functions or when otherwise directed to do so.
Section 8: The SERGEANT-AT-ARMS shall preserve order at all meetings and shall perform such other duties as may be assigned to him by the Post.
Section 9: The POST HISTORIAN shall be charged with the individual records and incidents of the Post and its members, and shall perform such other duties as may properly pertain to the office, as may be determined by the Post or the Executive Committee.
Section 10: Each elected or appointed officer of this Post, charged with the control and disbursement of fixed budgets or special funds, shall, at the end of his term of office, or at the expiration of such time that the fund or budget becomes unnecessary, or is discontinued by action of the Commander or the Executive Committee, prepare, and submit within such time allowance as is deemed reasonable and sufficient for the purpose by the Post Executive Committee, a complete and exact accounting of his office, chairmanship, or other, and incorporating all items of incoming funds and disbursements in a formal report to the membership.
Section 1 : The out-going Post Commander, prior to the Department Convention, and subject to the consent and approval of the Post, shall annually appoint delegates and alternates to act as the Post's representatives at the Department Convention.
Section 2: The newly elected Post Commander, prior to the Department Convention, and subject to the consent and approval of the Post, shall annually appoint delegates and alternates to act as the Post's representatives at the Seventh District meetings, and upon such other occasions as the Post may direct. He shall make his report of the proceedings of such conventions, meetings, or other occasions at the next succeeding regular monthly meeting of the Post.
Section 3: The Alternate shall assume and discharge the duties of the delegate in the absence or disability of, or when called upon, by the delegate.
Section 1: The EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE shall consist of all elective and appointive officer's of the Post, all of whom shall be entitled to vote on all matters at all meetings of the Executive Committee.
Section 2: The Executive Committee shall meet at least once every month at such time and place as it shall determine.
Section 3: A majority of the elected officers of the Post shall constitute an Executive Committee Quorum.
Section 4: The Senior Vice-Commander shall be the presiding officer at all Executive Committee meetings.
Section 5: The Post Adjutant shall act as Secretary for the Executive Committee.
Section 6: The Executive Committee shall exercise general supervision over all property of the Post. It shall supervise the auditing of the books of the Finance Officer every six months and make an open report of such audit to the Post. It shall have the power to transact such business between Post meetings as may be assigned to it by the Commander, making proper report of such business to the next Post meeting.
Section 7: The Executive Committee shall approve or delegate to one or more of its members the responsibility of review and approval of all letters, correspondence, or other matter, privately distributed or mailed on Legion Post No. 134 stationery, by prepayment of postage or under the Legion postal permit privileges, which is not authored or authorized by the Executive Committee, an officer thereof, or by direction of the whole committee or any member thereof.
Section 1: The Post Commander immediately upon taking office each year shall appoint the respective chairmen of the following standing committees: Americanism, Athletics, Blood Donor, Carnival, Children and Youth, Counter-Subversive, Gifts for Hospitalized Veterans, Historian, Nurses Scholarship, Poppy Day, Public Relations, Rehabilitation, S.A.L., Service Officer, and such other appointments that may be required in order to successfully maintain current Post programs and activities.
Section 2: The AMERICANISM Committee shall be charged with the inspiration of patriotism and good citizenship by arranging for the proper observance of patriotic occasions; encouraging civic and patriotic phases of instruction in the schools; Americanization of aliens; combating Anti-American propaganda by education of the general public in American ideals through public forums, etc. and activities for community and civic betterment.
Section 3: The chairmen of the various committees concerned with youth activities shall assist and co-operate with such youth promotion organizations and movements as the Post may direct, and may instigate and sponsor such youth promotion and development programs as it shall deem adequate and desirable and a credit to the Post and the communities.
Section 4: The PUBLICITY Committee shall be charged with the promotion of public support of the Legion's program by the establishment of proper contact with the American Legion publications, the Departmental and National News Service, and by local publicity of Post programs and activities.
Section 1: (a) The regular meeting of this Post shall be on the fourth Thursday of each month or on such a date, time and place as the Post may prescribe.
(b) Special meetings of the Post may be called by the Commander, or by any four members of the Post in good standing, by mailing to all members in good standing a notice of the time, place, and purpose of said meeting at least five (5) days in advance thereof. Only such business as may be mentioned in the notice thereof shall be transacted at any special meeting.
Section 2: Five (5) per cent of the membership in good standing present at a meeting shall constitute a quorum.
Section 3: Any regular monthly Post meeting or any special meeting the call of which complies with the requirements stipulated in sub-section (b) of section 1 of this article, shall "ipso facto" constitute a regularly convened meeting within the meaning of this constitution and by-laws, provided that a quorum as stipulated in section 2 of this article shall be present.
Section 1 : The revenue of this Post shall be derived from annual membership dues and such other sources as may be approved by the Post Executive Committee.
Section 2: All new members and those members' applying for renewal of membership shall be assessed an amount in dues as shall be initiated by the Post Executive Committee. Final approval shall be made at a general meeting by a vote of two-thirds of the members in good standing present at such meeting; provided that the proposed change in dues shall have been published in the Post newsletter for two months prior to final action. All new members and transfers in shall be obliged to pay the cost of the Legion cap. Each application for membership must be accompanied by the original or certified copy of discharge papers and approved by the Senior Vice-Commander or a member of his committee, authorized to act in his stead.
Section 3: Members may purchase a five year membership card at a savings per year determined by the membership after a recommendation from the Executive Board. No changes may be made to a member's 5 year plan when it is in effect. If a member transfers or becomes deceased after selecting this plan, the unexpired amount of the annual dues of the Post shall be refunded to him, or in the case of a decedent, to his beneficiaries or estate. Changed February 2004.
Section 4: The fiscal year of the Post shall be July 1 thru June 30. Changed August 2003.
Section 5: Immediately upon collection thereof the Finance Officer shall pay the Department Headquarters, the National and the Departmental annual membership dues of each and every member of the Post. He shall also forward to the Seventh District Headquarters, the per capita dues annually when they are due.
Section 6: All monies collected by the Post from dues or other sources shall be deposited in the general fund of the post and kept in said general fund until appropriated by a majority vote of all members present at a regularly convened meeting of the Post, with the following exceptions:
(a) Monies, required for specific purposes or programs of a continuing nature, that are estimated and included in the annual budget submitted by the Executive Committee and approved by the membership.
(b) Supplemental allowances to the above when justified, recommended by the Executive Committee and approved by the membership.
(c) Monies, accrued through profitable activities of a committee operating under a Budget system, which have been anticipated and considered in fixing the amount of the budgetary allocation of funds, required for that committee's use.
(d) Monies, acquired through special fund raising activities in which the Post by and with the consent of the members, acts individually or in conjunction with other organizations to raise funds for recognized charities, benefits, or other approved objectives.
(e) Monies, required to fulfill the obligations as set forth in Section 5, this Article.
Section 7: No Monies, allocated by budget or withheld from the general funds for any reason, including the exceptions listed in Section 6, this article, may be diverted from the purpose for which they were withheld, or transferred from one account to another or from one committee to another as items of the whole budget for any reason what-so-ever, without the recommendation of the Executive Committee and the approval by resolution of the membership.
Section 8: Monies disbursed by the Post are to be paid by means of a voucher system whereby those persons authorized to draw on funds are required to submit a signed voucher with a bill attached, whenever practical. This voucher is then submitted to the Post Commander or his representative for his signed approval before being forwarded to the Finance Officer for payment. The Finance Officer shall then issue a check counter-signed by the Post Commander to complete the transaction and the proper entry shall be made in the Finance Officer's ledger charged to the account or budget involved subject to audit.
Section 1: When exceptional service or an act or acts of outstanding merit or heroism justify such recognition, this Post may publicly honor, through the award of a Bronze Plaque, any Legionnaire, Auxiliary Member, Civic Leader, Public Servant or private individual who has served our Nation, the American Legion, our Post or our Community with outstanding distinction or personal sacrifice that merits the highest commendation and regard of the members of this Post and of his fellow citizens.
Section 2: Not more than one such award may be conferred during any single calendar year and the following conditions must be met to establish worthiness of the candidate and justification for the award.
(a) The acts or service shall be exceptional and above and beyond the call, requirements, or obligation of citizenship, of duty in paid or unpaid occupations, or public office, or any office whether it be under civic, service or community organization.
(b) When awarded for individual service; effort and self-sacrifice shall be the dominant factor to be considered and when for outstanding accomplishment and successful ventures attained through the assistance, contributions and collective actions of others; inspired leadership shall be an added requisite to warrant consideration.
Section 3: Proposals for the award of the Bronze Plaque must be submitted in writing to the Post Executive Committee, three months prior to time of award in order to afford ample allowance for investigation by that body, submission to the membership, and necessary engraving. The proposal shall incorporate all particulars of cause, merit and individual worthiness.
Section 4: Only such proposals that are approved by a minimum two-thirds vote of the whole Committee may be recommended to the Post Membership for action.
Section 5: Final action may be taken, only at a regularly convened meeting of the Post Membership which may deny or sanction the award by a majority vote of the members present and voting.
Section 6: Any proposal for a nominee to receive a Life Membership shall be instituted through the Awards chairman who thereupon with the concurrence of his committee shall make the recommendation to the Post Executive Committee. The Post Executive Committee then shall propose acceptance or rejection to the membership at that meeting which shall include the election of Post officers. Only those members in good standing and present at such meeting shall be eligible to vote. The nominee must receive a majority of the ballots to become the recipient of the Life Membership Award.
Section 7: Nothing in these By-Laws shall be construed to imply that the awards shall be granted annually or that the most deserving act or commendable service of the year should merit the award, if such acts or service, do not measure up to the exacting requirements outlined in the sections of this article.
Section 1 : This Post shall be the judge of its own members, subject to the restrictions of the National and Departmental By-Laws.
Section 2: (a) Any member of the Post may be suspended or expelled for cause by two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Post Executive Committee, provided, however, that charges shall have been filed in writing under oath with, and considered by, the Executive Committee, and a fair trial shall have been had upon same, according to the prevailing practice of the National Organization,
(b) Any member who has been so suspended or so expelled shall have the right of appeal to the Department Executive Committee, or the Department Convention, according to the provisions of the Department By-laws pertaining thereto.
Section 3: Any member who has been suspended from this Post, as provided herein, may be re-instated in the Post by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of all members present at any regularly convened meeting of the Post upon compliance with the By-laws of the Post pertaining to the payment of dues as hereinafter provided in Section 4.
Section 4: Members who have not paid their dues for the current year by January 1 shall be classed as delinquent and if they are still in arrears by February 1 they shall be suspended from all privileges of the Post, and if they are still in arrears as of June 30 they shall forfeit membership in the American Legion. Anyone so delinquent or so suspended who is not in arrears for as much one year may be reinstated to active membership in good standing by a vote of the Post by payment of all amounts due from such member to the Post for arrears in addition to the dues for the current year in which such reinstatement occurs. Anyone whose membership has been forfeited for non-payment of dues for one year may be reinstated by a vote of the Post upon payment by such member of one year's arrears in dues in addition to the dues for the current year in which such reinstatement occurs. Anyone whose membership has been forfeited for non-payment of dues for a period of two consecutive years, shall not be reinstated, but may be readmitted as a new member.
Section 1: This combined Constitution and By-laws has been adapted subject to the provisions of the American Legion National and the Department of Illinois Constitutions and By-laws. Any amendment to said National or Departmental Constitution or By-laws which is in conflict with any provision hereof shall be regarded as automatically repealing or modifying the provisions of this Constitution and By-laws to the extent of such conflict
Section 2: This combined Constitution and By-laws may be amended at any regularly convened Post meeting by a vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the members in good standing attending such meeting; provided that the proposed amendment or amendments shall have been submitted in writing and read at the two next consecutive preceding regularly convened meetings of the Post; and provided, further, that written notice shall have been given by mail to all members in good standing in advance of the date when such amendment or amendments are to be voted upon, notifying said members that at such a meeting a proposal to amend the Constitution and By-laws is to be voted upon.
There are two classes of Post Elections. The Unanimous Vote Category and the election Ballot Category.
The Unanimous Vote is when a candidate runs for a post office unopposed. A ballot election is when more than one candidate is running for a given office.
In the case of the Unanimous Vote Category the Commander may elect to oversee the election himself instead of an election committee. In this type of election a simple voice vote or a show of hands would be acceptable.
If multiple candidates are running for office a voting ballot election would be required. The date of the next election and list of candidates, if more than one, would be printed in the Post Newsletter two (2) months prior to the night of the election. At the discretion or the Post Commander a voting procedure committee will be appointed, thirty (30) days prior to the election. The committee shall arrange to furnish all necessary supplies to run the election.
The Post Registration Book will be available on election night for all elections; all members' identification cards will be checked for current year payment of dues. A count of members present will be taken by a member of the election committee, and an exact number of paper ballots will be set for distribution. One ballet for each member. The unmarked ballots will be distributed to the membership. Any absentee ballots will be presented to the Commander from the Adjutant. The Commander shall verify all absentee ballots as to the requirements for using an absentee type ballot. Proxy ballots are not allowed. If these absentee ballots are valid the Commander shall give them to the Election Board Chairman for tabulation and the ballots will be credited to the proper candidate. All absentee ballots must be signed by a voting member and submitted to the adjutant ten (10) days prior to the election. The signature must be witnessed by a post officer or notarized. Also the candidate on the absentee ballot must be specified.
After ballots are marked by the membership the election committee shall collect all marked ballots. The committee chairman will ask three (3) times are all ballots turned in. Ballots will be counted to make sure that ballots received do not exceed ballots distributed. Once ballot counting has started no other ballots will be accepted. After election is final, all ballots will be given to the adjutant to be destroyed.
Upon completion of vote tabulation the Voting Committee Chairman shall present to the Commander the election results. The Commander will then announce the winner to the membership.
Revised March 2013
File modified Thursday 28 Mar 2013 19:17:08 GMT