ARTICLE I. Purpose
This organisation shall promote a better understanding of:
The current status of laws concerning cannabis (marijuana) in the Republic of Ireland.
The medical, legal, environmental, economic and civil liberation arguments for more reasonable treatment of cannabis in the laws of the Republic of Ireland.
The policy options for cannabis regulation as delineated in the NORML Official Policy Statement.
This organisation shall be affiliated with the ‘National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws’ (NORML) in accordance with guidelines enumerated in the NORML Activist Program and Affiliate Guidelines.
This affiliate shall be commonly known as NORML IRELAND, hereafter referred to as “the Chapter”.
ARTICLE II. Membership
The membership shall be divided into active and associate members.
Only individuals whose affiliate dues are up to date or who have performed an agreed upon service in lieu of dues are considered active members of the chapter.
All others interested in furthering the purpose of the organisation, including paid members of the national organisation who are not active members of the Chapter, may be associate members. Associate members shall not hold office, vote, preside, officiate, or solicit funds on behalf of the Chapter without the written consent of the board.
The names of new active members shall be sent to the national office of NORML every month. Upon joining the Chapter, active members shall receive a free one-year trial membership from the US National office.
Active membership shall be placed at a Standard membership rate of 10 euro.
At the discretion of the Board of Directors, special amenities, event discounts, and promotions ma y be made available to Standard members.
ARTICLE III. Board of Directors
Only active members of the Chapter shall be eligible to serve as elected or appointed members of the Board of Directors. The minimum number of board members shall be five (5)
The Board may appoint associate board members of advisers who have no official vote.
Board Officers: The Board of Directors shall elect Officers of the Board of Directors. Only members of the Board of Directors may be Officers of the Board.
2a. Duties of Officers of the Board of Directors: These are description of the duties and are to be used as guidelines. There are no absolute and specific limitations or obligations of responsibility or authority. The Board of Officers shall act as a team and be ready and willing to share information and duties. Board members shall cross-train and assist wherever possible.
2b. Executive Director: Acts as primary spokesperson for the organisation. The director presides at all meetings, and promotes an effective liaison with other organisations, politicians, the media, the public, and the nation office of NORML.
All Elected Directors serve a term of three (3) years, beginning on the first month following elections and ending on the first of the month following elections. Appointed Directors serve until the next scheduled elections for Board positions.
3a. Any Board member of Officer may be removed for just cause by a super-majority of 65% of the Board present and voting in the affirmative.
3b. Four unexcused absences from scheduled meetings of the Board of Directors represent just cause for removal from the Board. The Board member in question shall be given the opportunity to speak and bring witnesses on their behalf prior to a vote being held. The Board member subject to removal is not eligible to vote on this matter.
Filling Board vacancies: Board members may nominate candidates immediately or at the board meeting following the vacancy. Elections may also occur at this meeting or be scheduled for the first available opportunity. Candidates to fill board vacancies must be active member of this organisation and capable of carrying out the duties and responsibilities of the position.
4a. In the event no qualified candidates are nominated to fill a vacant board position, the Board may defer filing such vacancy until such time as a qualified candidate is nominated and approved by vote of the Board of Directors.
The quorum for the Board of Directors to conduct business shall be a majority of currently seated directors, with a minimum quorum of three (3) members.
ARTICLE IV. Executive Committee
The Board of Officers shall collectively nominate THREE members of the Board Officers to serve on an Executive Committee; said committee shall be comprised of THREE Officers of the Board of Directors. Nominations must be approved by a majority vote of the Board of Directors.
The Executive Committee shall take all necessary actions to pursue the objectives of the Chapter on a day-to-day basis, making decisions between regular meetings of the Board on matters that do not require the input of the full Board of Directors. Actions of the Executive Committee are subject to monthly review by the Board of Directors.
The Executive Committee shall be reviewed once a year by the Board of Directors.
*At the founding of the chapter the Officers of the Board will be caretakers of the Executive Committee until the Board has been voted for by the membership.
ARTICLE V. Membership Meetings
The organisation’s membership will meet at least four times per year in THREE regional meetings and ONE national AGM. The Board shall give members at least thirty-day advance notice of the quarterly meeting by posting an announcement of the meeting on the official Chapter website and sending out an e-mail to all registered members.
The quorum needed for the general conduct of business is TEN per cent of the active membership or TEN members (including members of the Board of Directors present), whichever is fewer.
ARTICLE VI. Voting
Only active members may vote. The quorum is TEN per cent of the active membership or TEN members (including members of the Board of Directors present), whichever is fewer. The majority is fifty per cent plus one of the active members present.
Proxy voting by active members shall be allowed, provided the member’s ballot is signed by the member, clearly marked as to the member’s vote, and is received by the Chapter no later than 5 pm on the day of election.
No new member, who joins at a meeting, may vote at that meeting, but may vote only at subsequent meetings.
ARTICLE VII. Finances
All funds are to be deposited and handled through a checking account at a reputable financial institution under the name of the Chapter and maintained by the Treasurer.
Each active member shall pay dues, unless the Board of Directors, in extraordinary circumstances, waives dues. The annual dues amount shall not be excessive and will be determined by the Board.
Dues are not the sole condition of membership, particularly in the case of financial hardship. Financial hardship cases shall be reviewed and approved by the Officers. In these cases the member applying shall perform a mutually agreed upon service in lieu of cash dues. The service requirements shall not be excessive.
ARTICLE VIII. Elections
Nominations and elections for board members shall take place during the first membership meetings.
The quorum to conduct nominations and elections is ten (10) per cent of the active membership, or ten (10) members, whichever is fewer.
The majority required to elect a new Board member is fifty per cent plus one of the active membership present at the meeting.
If fifty percent plus one majority is not obtained by one of the candidates, the candidate receiving the lowest number of votes shall be dropped from consideration, and the active membership will vote again. In the event that fifty per cent plus one majority of the active membership cannot be obtained by anyone, the voting will be postponed until the next meeting.
Any active member of the organisation may nominate an active member for a board position by raising his or her hand and indicating such when recognised. Each active member shall have one vote per Board vacancy.
At the discretion of the Executive Committee, voting may be either by show of hands, voicing ‘aye’ or ‘nay’, or by written ballot.
ARTICLE IX. Amendments
Any active member may introduce an amendment to these bylaws at the conclusion of any meeting. The active members shall vote on the amendment at the following meeting. If the amendment passes, it will take effect following approval by the national office of NORML.
The quorum for an amendment is ten per cent of the active membership, or ten (10) members, whichever is fewer. A two-thirds majority of active members present at the time of voting is needed to amend the bylaws.
ARTICLE X. Parliamentary Authority
National NORML bylaws and “Roberts Rules of Order”, newly revised, by Sarah Corbin Roberts, shall be used in all cases not covered by these bylaws, including but not limited to removal of officers from the board and/or expulsion of members.
ARTICLE XI. Copies of Bylaws
Copies of bylaws shall be posted on the official Chapter website, and made available to anyone upon request.
ARTICLE XII. Approval of Bylaws
These bylaws have been reviewed and approved by the Founding Board of Directors
Officers of the Board
Dr Cathal Ó Súiliobháin
Dr Garrett McGovern
Luke “Ming” Flanagan TD