Our Constitution

Sustainable and Renewable Energy Engineering Society Constitution

Updated January 2019

Article 1: Society Name

1)    The name of the society shall be “Sustainable and Renewable Energy Engineering Society”, hereafter referred to as “SREESoc” or the “society”. “Membership” shall hereafter refer to the SREESoc membership.

Article 2: Purpose/Goals

1)    SREESoc shall aim to promote the interests of sustainable and renewable energy related fields and applications, serving primarily its membership and the Carleton University student population and secondarily the interested public.

2)    SREESoc shall act as a bridge between students in the field of sustainable and renewable energy engineering and the sustainable and renewable energy industry.

3)    SREESoc shall strive to promote professional excellence and a sense of community among its members while developing positive relations with other student and external groups.

4)    SREESoc shall fulfill its purpose through the pursuit of the following:

a) Preparation of seminars, lectures, conferences, workshops or other opportunities to excite its members and the public about the sustainable and renewable energy industry,

b) Making services available to support its members,

c) Encouraging participation of the public and private sectors in SREESoc events, and

d) Organizing any other event or activity consistent with the purpose and goals of the society.

Article 3: Membership

1)    SREESoc shall admit membership to any person who fulfills the following requirements:

a) Shares an interest in the society and furthering its goals,

b) Is a student at Carleton University, and

c) Pays the annual membership fee.

2)    Membership shall be valid from the date of registration to the end of the winter semester on April 30.

3)    Members shall have the right to

a) Attend SREESoc meetings, (See Article 5),

b) Address the membership on any matter pertaining to the society,

c) Vote at general meetings,

d) Vote at elections, (See Article 6), and

e) Access all SREESoc publications

4)    SREESoc may revoke, by 3/4 executive resolution, the membership of any member who:

a) Ceases to be eligible as outlined in Article 3, Section 1,

b) Willfully damages any SREESoc assets,

c) Displays improper behaviour unbecoming a member of the society while representing SREESoc,

d) Otherwise brings the society into disrepute.

Article 4: Executive

1)     An executive board, consisting of elected officers, and appointed advisors, shall govern SREESoc in service of its members.

2)    The elected executive board shall consist of the offices of:

a) President,

b) Internal, Vice President,

c) External, Vice President,

d) Finance, Vice President,

e) Social, Vice President,

f) Academic, Vice President, and

g) Services, Vice President.

3)    The appointed executive board shall consist of the offices of:

a) Secretary,

b) Year Representatives, and

c) Stream Representatives (refer to Section 14).

4)    The duties of executive office shall be:

a) To act in the society’s name, following its purpose and furthering its goals,

b) To not act in conflict with decisions made by general resolution or the constitution,

c) To administer committees to make recommendations or implement its resolutions,

d) To perform any other duty, consistent with the above, and consistent with the purpose and goals of the society,

e) To attend all applicable SREESoc meetings,

f) Be familiar with the contents of the SREESoc constitution, in particular the duties of their specific position, and

g) To be willing to serve as Chair at executive meetings (refer to Sections 5(d) and 6(b).

5)    The President’s duties shall be:

a) To represent SREESoc to its members and to the public,

b) To lead the executive and the membership,

c) To act as a spokesperson for the society,

d) To act as the Chair at SREES Executive meetings, and

e) To ensure the society meets all requirements and deliverables outlined by the SREESoc constitution and by the members at the AGM, including the preparation of an annual report before the end of the term in office.

6)    The Vice President Internal’s duties shall be:

a) To disseminate information regarding SREESoc business to its members,

b) To act as the Chair in the President’s absence at SREESoc meetings,

c) To ensure the smooth inner functioning of SREESoc,

d) To address any concerns regarding the elections or the constitution, including the appointment of a Chief Elections Officer,

e) To record and manage the membership records of SREESoc, and

f)To collect, organize, and manage storage of SREESoc files and records, ensuring the appropriate files are made available to the SREESoc membership.

7)    The Vice President External’s duties shall be:

a) To act as a liaison between the society and all organizations external to the SREESoc,

b) To maintain relations with the SREE industry,

c) To organize programs that will connect the SREE student body to the SREE industry, organizing one or more event which develops relations between the membership and related bodies external to SREESoc,

e) To supervise and aid the VP Social in liaising with bodies external to the society.

8)    The Vice President Finance’s duties shall be:

a) To properly maintain financial records in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles,

b) To prepare a budget and financial statements as outlined in Article 7,

c) To collect receipts and issue reimbursements for “out-of-pocket” expenses,

d) To manage SREESoc’s bank account and managing petty cash,

e) To record and track SREESoc’s assets, and

(f) To coordinate sponsorship, as well as funding sources and requests.

9)    The Vice President Social’s duties shall be:

a) To organize and run SREESoc social events, and

b) To publicize and promote SREESoc and its events to the membership and to the public.

10)  The Vice President Academic’s duties shall be:

a) To be a liaison between SREE students and professors internal to the university,

b) To organize and run SREE Design Competition, and

c) To organize and run study sessions, seminars, lectures, and workshops.

11)   The Vice President Services’ duties shall be:

a) To fabricate all SREESoc publication(s) approved by the SREESoc executive,

b) To maintain all online SREESoc documentation and resources including the maintenance and the functionality of the website,

c) To coordinate with council to disseminate information to the members of SREESoc through regular updating of the website,

d) To facilitate the loaning of SREESoc assets to SREESoc members, and

e) To manage the ordering and distribution of SREE products (‘SREESwag’) for members.

12)   The Secretary’s duties shall be:

a) To take detailed account of all votes and minutes at all executive and general meetings of the SREESoc,

b) To distribute minutes to executive members within one week of meeting date,

c) Will provide to any member in good standing, free of charge, any of the following, under the direction of VP Internal:

i) The Constitution;

ii) By-Laws, rules regulations or polices of SREES;

iii) Minutes from any meeting of the members;

iv) Minutes from any open meeting of the Executive;

v) Documents tabled at any meeting of the members; and,

vi) Documents tabled at any open meeting of the Executive.

13)   The Class Year Representatives’ duties shall be:

a) To act as a liaison between the SREESoc executive and their respective year’s classes,

b) To make class announcements regarding all SREESoc programs and events,

c) To promote SREESoc in any capacity to their respective year’s classes,

d) To organize and run the semester Class Year Representative event, i.e. Grilled SREEs, and

e) To help where needed in other directorships.

14)   The CSES Representatives’ duties shall be:

a) To act as a liaison between SREES and the Faculty of Engineering, the associated Department as well as the Carleton Student Engineering Society, and

b) To promote SREES’s interests in Faculty and Department meetings.

c) The Stream Representative shall be a student of the associated program.

d) This position is to be elected via CSES General Elections. If not, the Stream Representative is elected via CSES. A SREES-specific Stream Representative may be elected through SREES in accordance with Article 7.

15)   In addition to their rights as members, executive officers of SREESoc shall have the right to vote on executive resolutions,

16)   Executive office shall be limited to students of Carleton University’s Sustainable and Renewable Energy Engineering Program and Carleton University’s Architectural Conservation and Sustainability Program.

17)   The term for executive office is one year, from May 1 to April 30 of the following year.

18)   An executive office shall be deemed vacant if

a) The incumbent executive submits a written resignation,

b) The incumbent executive is incapacitated,

c) The incumbent executive ceases to be a member of SREESoc or ceases to meet executive requirements outlined in Article 4, section 17, point a, or

d) No candidates are nominated for the office as outlined in Article VI.

19)   In order to remove a council member from their position, in chronological order:

a) A written and electronic (via Council email) warning must be given to that council member stating that they are not meeting the requirements of their position under Article 4.

i) In the event a written warning cannot be delivered within one week of the initial problem statement the formal notice can be submitted into the meeting minutes of the second meeting along with a second formal email notice to their Council email.

b) Progress must be made within two weeks of the warning to meet the requirements of their position as defined by Article 4.

c) 2/3 of executive quorum (under the rules of Article 6 2) d.) must vote in favour of the motion to remove the council member

d) In case of 19) c)., the position will be the immediately vacancy of their position. A formal written notice of the vote will be sent to the council member who has been removed from their position. (*note that a change of password for their accounts may be needed.)

e) The position can be filled immediately under Article 7, by nomination and appointment by the a majority of council members also subject to c). and  Article 7.

20)   Should an executive office become vacant, the remaining executive shall appoint successor to serve the balance of the term based on the following:

a) The successor for the office of President shall be a Vice President, who will vacate his/her current office upon a vote of the current executive.

b) The successor for any other office shall be a member of SREESoc or a current executive.

21)  The signatures of any two of the President, VP Internal, VP External or VP Finance shall be sufficient to bind the society,

a) Except the VP Finance shall only have signing power if they have previously held an executive position for a full term. ***

22)   The Secretary, All Year Representatives, and Faulty Advisors will not count against quorum should they be absent from an executive meeting.

23)   In addition to all above listed duties, all executives are expected to be familiar with the constitution and their duties, and have read the constitution prior to attaining office.

Article 5: Directorships

1)     Optional Directorships

a) Any executive may create a temporary directorship in the bounds of his/her portfolio.

b) A temporary directorship will last until the end of the that executives appointed term.

c) An executive may terminate a directorship in his/her portfolio at any time.

d) Any optional directorship must be approved by a vote of the executive with quorum.

Article 6: Meetings

1)     General Meetings

a) The general meetings shall be open to everyone, although only members of the society may vote on general resolutions.

b) The executive shall call general meetings at least once annually,

c) The executive shall publish meetings’ time, location and agenda at least 14 days in advance of any general meetings and must be in attendance.

d) The required number of members present at a general meeting shall be

i) At least 8 of SREESoc’s members to constitute a general quorum, or

ii) At least 12 of SREESoc’s members to constitute a constitutional quorum.

e) SREESoc’s decisions shall be made

i) By general resolution if the majority of a general or constitutional quorum votes in favour, or

ii) By constitutional resolution if at least 2/3 of a constitutional quorum votes in favour.

f) Notwithstanding the right of the membership to attend general meetings, the executive may deliberate in private before voting on any resolutions or to consult the constitution.

2)     Executive Meetings

a) Executive meetings shall be open to members of SREESoc.

b) Only executive officers may vote on executive resolutions,

c) Any executive officer may call an executive meeting, but must be approved by the President, VP Internal or VP External,

d) At least 50% of SREESoc’s executive officers, including at least two of the President, VP Internal, VP External, and the VP Finance shall be present at an executive meeting to constitute an executive quorum,

e) SREESoc’s decisions shall be made by executive resolution if the majority of the present executive quorum votes in favour,

f) Notwithstanding the right of the membership to attend executive meetings, the executive may deliberate in private before voting on executive resolutions,

g) The executive shall publish the meeting minutes within one week following a SREESoc meeting,

h) If an executive must miss a meeting, the absence must be sanctioned by the President, VP Internal or VP External, prior to the meeting.

Article 7: Elections

1)     The executive shall call an election at the end of its term in office, to be held between March 1 and March 31.

2)    The executive in conjunction with the CEO shall notify members of SREESoc at least two weeks in advance of the election date, including a formal writ of election.

3)    Upon calling an election, the executive shall appoint one executive as the Elections Officer. The Elections Officer shall not be implicated in a conflict of interest by running for a position within said election. The Elections Officer’s duties shall be

a) To solicit candidates for executive office, and

b) To run the election pursuant to Article VI.

4)    The Elections Officer shall accept the candidature for executive office of any student of Carleton University’s Sustainable and Renewable Energy Engineering Program who submits signed notification to the Elections Officer stating his/her intent to run for election, at least one week prior to the election date.

a) Refer to Article IV, section 17.

5)    Candidates may run for only one executive office.

6)    Where the number of candidates for an executive office is:

a) One, a confidence vote must be taken by the membership during the election,

b) None, that office shall be deemed vacant and the position will be appointed by the new council before the next September, or

c) More than one, the membership shall choose the executive officer by election.

7)     Votes shall be cast by secret ballot. Each member may cast only one vote per office up for election or confidence vote.

8)    The ballots shall be tallied under the supervision of the Elections Officer and witnessed by any SREESoc member in good standing without conflict who so chooses, or administered by the Carleton University Senate Office, through coordination with the Chief Elections Officer.

9)    The candidate who receives the most votes for an office, and accepts, shall assume the office on May 1.

10)   Should there be a tie between candidates for an executive office, the tie shall be resolved first through a re-casting of the ballots by the members and in the event of a second tie the tie will be resolved by way of a vote of the current executive.

a) If there is no time left in March for a second casting of the votes by the members, move directly to a tie-break by way of a vote of the current executive,

i) The incoming executive shall have no voting privileges in this tie-break.

ii) The two candidates shall be given a forum to promote themselves directly prior to the vote. Refer to 6) b).

11)    The position of the President must be filled by a previous council member who has held a council position for a minimum of one year.

12)    It is strongly recommended that the positions of Vice President Internal and Vice President Finance be filled by a previous council member who has held a council position for a minimum of one year.

12)    The Elections Officer shall notify SREESoc of the election results within two days following the reception of election results, at the AGM as well as through electronic announces.

Article 8: Finance

1)       SREESoc’s fiscal year shall correspond with the executive term in office, from May 1 to April 30.

2)     The fiscal year shall be divided into halves for accounting purposes, to correspond with fall and winter semesters.

3)     The executive shall approve a budget by the end of September for the year.

4)     Executive shall set the membership fee at the beginning of September.

5)     Upon dissolution of the society, any remaining SREESoc assets shall be donated to a Carleton University based non-profit organization, at the discretion of the executive officers in conjunction with discussion with the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and Department of Electronics

6)     SREESoc financial records shall be made available for third-party audit by general resolution of a general meeting, as defined in Article 5.

7)     SREESoc executives shall be expected to follow the guidelines set by the current VP Finance.

Article 9: Committees

1)     A committee may be formed by any executive upon approval of either President or VP Internal.

a) A committee must consist of 3 members including one executive.

b) Each committee is required to make a minimum of one report to an executive meeting each year.

2)    Special Committees

a) The Constitution Committee must be chaired by the President or VP Internal and must be formed by the first executive meeting of the fall term.

i) Duties shall include but not be limited to revising the constitution in a timely manner.

Article 10: Amendments

1)     Changes to the SREESoc constitution shall be ratified only if

a) The proposed amendment is read at two executive meetings, with at least one week between readings, and

b) After the second reading, the amendment is approved by executive resolution as defined in Article 5, or

c) The proposed amendment is read at the AGM and a majority of the members vote in favour, the amendment is approved by a constitutional  quorum as defined in Article 5, Section 1, Point d) ii).