1. Name and Definitions

1.1 .The association’s name is ‘North Yorkshire Neighbourhood Watch Association’, referred to as NY NHWA throughout this document.
1.2 .Reference to ‘District Neighbourhood Watch Groups’ includes the  founder members, Craven, Filey, Eastfield & Rural, Hambleton, Harrogate, Richmondshire, Ryedale, Scarborough, York, Selby and others in the future, which may be formed within the geographical boundaries of North Yorkshire.

2. Aims and Objects

The aim of the NY NHWA is to support, encourage and promote all aspects of Neighbourhood Watch (NW), whilst building an effective liaison between the police, statutory and voluntary organisations, other agencies and the public of North Yorkshire.

In furtherance of the said aim, but not otherwise, the NY NHWA shall:
2.1. Be non-party in politics, non-sectarian in religion and shall operate an equal opportunities and supportive of minority groups policy.
2.2. Provide advice and services for and on behalf of all NW and other legitimate Watch groups.
2.3. Liaise with other NW groups, Police Safer Neighbourhood committees and other such statutory and voluntary bodies as necessary
2.4. Collect and disseminate information on all matters relating to the above objectives and exchange such information with other bodies having similar objectives.
2.5. Undertake, execute, manage or assist any charitable trust which may lawfully be undertaken by the Association or its members.
2.6. Raise funds by inviting contributions from any body or persons by way of donations and otherwise in order to administer the fulfilling of the objectives of NY NHWA.
2.7. Invest the monies of the NY NHWA not immediately required for its purposes in a building society or bank account.
2.8. Ensure that indemnity insurance is available to cover the liability of the NY NHWA and its members, which by any rule of law would otherwise protect them in respect of any negligence, default of breach of trust or duty of which they may be guilty in relation to NY NHWA activities, provided that it was not in reckless disregard of the conditions of the insurance policy.
2.9. Procure, print, publish, issue and circulate gratuitously or otherwise such papers, books, periodicals, pamphlets or other documents or films and electronic means as shall further the above objects.
2.10. Appoint and constitute such advisory committees as the NY NHWA may think fit.
2.11. Promote and carry out or assist in promoting and carrying out research, surveys and analysis of investigations and publish results thereof.
2.12. Employ such staff (who shall not be members of the Committee) as are necessary for the proper pursuit of the objects.  Voluntary staff would not receive remuneration or benefits in kind but should expect reasonable expenses
2.13. Do all such lawful things as are necessary for the attainment of the said objects.

3. Membership

Membership of the NY NHWA shall be limited to North Yorkshire NHW groups and such other representatives as the NY NHWA shall from time to time decide are necessary.

3.1. Each NHW District in North Yorkshire shall nominate two representatives to membership of the NY NHWA.  The names of the nominees should be submitted to the NY NHWA secretary.
3.2. North Yorkshire Police shall nominate two force persons to represent it on the NY NHWA, one of whom should be the nominated SPOC (Single point of contact) for NYP or his/her deputy.  Police representatives shall contribute to discussions but are not eligible to vote.
3.3. Additional membership shall be at the absolute discretion of the NY NHWA and individuals or organisations should write to the secretary.
3.4. The elected members should seek to represent the views of their respective district membership and should work in close liaison with their police colleagues.
3.5. Each member may appoint an individual to represent him or her at any meeting that he or she is unable to attend.

4. Termination of membership

4.1. Any member may resign by giving written notice to the Secretary.
4.2. NY NHWA shall have the right to suspend the membership of an invited group, elected or appointed under paragraph 3.3 at its discretion.
4.3. Should the NY NHWA have concerns regarding any member elected under paragraph 3.1, a written statement, after due discussion, giving detailed reasons for a suspension or membership termination shall be provided to the appropriate person(s).  Such persons have the right of a review.

5. Officers of the NY NHWA

5.1. At the Annual General Meeting of the NY NHWA, the members shall elect a Chairperson, a Vice-Chairperson, a Treasurer, a Secretary and any other officers they may consider necessary.  Roles and responsibilities are attached to this Constitution after agreement.
5.2. The elected Chairperson  shall stand for re-election each year.
5.3. All other officers elected shall hold office until the conclusion of the next AGM of the NY NHWA but shall be eligible for re-election.
5.4. Should a serving officer leave or resign then another member, at the discretion of the NY NHWA, may fill the position on a temporary basis until the next AGM.
5.5. The NY NHWA committee shall appoint an independent, qualified Auditor (to be nominated by the Treasurer) and shall agree the level of remuneration.

6. Finance

6.1. The Treasurer shall keep proper accounts of the finances of the NY NHWA.
6.2. The Treasurer shall open and maintain a bank account.  The NY NHWA shall authorise three named persons – Chairperson, Vice-chairperson and Treasurer to be signatories on the account. The committee shall designate a fellow member to act as 4th signatory to the account. All cheques shall be signed by a minimum of two of the authorised signatories.
6.3. The Auditor(s), duly appointed by the NY NHWA, shall formally audit the accounts at least once a year.
6.4. An audited statement of accounts for the last financial year shall be submitted by the Treasurer at the AGM.
6.5. The Treasurer shall present a statement of finances, verbally or in writing at all NY NHWA meetings.
6.6. All monies raised shall be used solely in the interest of furthering the defined objects of NY NHWA and shall include reasonable travel expenses of participating members attending NY NHWA meetings.
6.7. The Treasurer shall ensure that the association’s funds are in credit at all times, in order to ameliorate the risk of financial liability to committee members. There should be a contingency fund maintained at an agreed appropriate level.

7. Meetings of the NY NHWA

7.1. There shall be an Annual General Meeting of the NY NHWA, which will be held in June every year or as soon after as is reasonably practicable.  The Secretary will give notice at least 21 days before the agreed date.
7.2. At the AGM the business shall include:
7.2.1. Consideration of the Annual Report
7.2.2. Consideration of the Treasurer’s Report
7.2.3. Appointment of the Auditors
7.2.4. Ratification of Constitutional Amendments
7.2.5. Election of Officers
7.2.6. Nomination to the Yorks. & Humber Regional NHW Committee

7.2.7.    Procedure for the Election of Officers at the AGM

28 days before the AGM
A notice of the AGM, will be sent by Ringmaster to all NHW Coordinators, calling for nominations of Officers.

Committee members will receive a nomination form on a 1: 1 basis, along with the deadline for submission.

The AGM notice will include the date, time and venue of the meeting. It will also include details of any guest speakers.

The election of Officers nomination forms will be available on the website along with the deadline for submission.

NHW Coordinators, who are not committee members, will be asked to apply to the Secretary, if they wish to attend the AGM.

The Annual and Financial reports will be finalised and audited. These will be circulated to Committee members and also be available to view on the website

21 days before the AGM
Is the closing date for all nominations.

All nominations forms must be sent to the Secretary by this date.

14 days before AGM
A Ringmaster message will be sent to all NHW Coordinators, to notify that the agenda, with minutes of the last Annual General Meeting and details of nominees, will be available to view on the website

An explanation to all NHW Coordinators of what is to be discussed will also be included.

Publicity for the AGM will be prepared, to remind Committee members and partners of the AGM and again to stress the importance of attending the meeting.

To advertise the AGM: –

Issue a reminder to Committee members and partners by e-mail;

Urge all representatives and partners to attend.

At the AGM
Whilst there will be formal business and Officers elections to deal with, the meeting will be as relaxed and friendly as possible.

The atmosphere will not be aggressive or overly procedural. Members will be encouraged to take an active part in discussion. However, any procedures and deadlines set out in the constitution will be adhered to.

Members will be asked to formally endorse the Annual Report and Statement of Accounts.

The Secretary will conduct, with the assistance of the Chairman any election held at the AGM

The Secretary will formally announce the outcomes of: –

1. Officers positions that were unopposed in the nomination process (i.e. elected unopposed);

2. All elections conducted by NY NHWA at the AGM.

7.3. The NY NHWA committee shall meet not less than four times per year, including the AGM, at which only members of the NY NHWA Committee are entitled to vote.  The Chairperson will have the casting vote in the case of a tie or may use his discretion to decide on further consideration at the next meeting.
7.4. A quorum at a meeting shall be a minimum of five voting members, representing at least three districts.
7.5. Each District NHW Group shall be entitled to no more than two votes, both of which may be cast by one or two members present at the meeting.
7.6. The NY NHWA may appoint special or standing committees as deemed necessary and shall determine their terms of reference and timetable for reporting back to the NY NHWA committee.
7.7. Any member, or members, of the NY NHWA Committee may convene an Extraordinary General Meeting at any time providing all members are advised of such a meeting.  The validity of decisions taken at such a meeting is subject to the terms of paragraph 7.4.
7.8. Minutes of all meetings will be taken and distributed electronically to all members and the District NHW groups.

8. Constitution

Any alteration to the constitution, shall receive the assent of not less than two-thirds of the voting membership of the NY NHWA present and voting at an AGM or an EGM, provided that due notice of such alteration has been received by the secretary not less than 21 days before the meeting and at least 14 days written notice of explanation sent to each NY NHWA member.

9. Dissolution

If at any time it is considered necessary to dissolve the NY NHWA, the procedure should follow that of paragraph 8 and if the dissolution is confirmed any financial assets, after payment of debts, shall be shared between the NHW districts involved at that time.