♠ ♥ THE ATHLONE ‘72 BRIDGE CLUB CONSTITUTION & RULES ♦ ♣
1. NAME and HISTORY
The Club shall be known as The Athlone ’72 Bridge Club. The Club was founded in 1972 by Bridie Corcoran, John Daly, Kitty Higgins, Tadhg O’Donoghue and Paddy O’Toole.
The premise for setting up this new club was two fold:
a) To make bridge more accessible to all by opening membership to all levels and standards and maintaining an open door for anyone wishing to join.
b) To ensure the provision of summer bridge for those wishing to have the option of playing year round.
From its conception in 1972, apart from a brief period during hotel renovations when it transferred to the Hodson Bay Hotel, the Club has met every Monday night in The Shamrock Lodge Hotel.
1.1 Playing and promoting bridge within the rules, guidance and objectives of the C.B.A.I (Contract Bridge Association of Ireland) with which the Club will be fully registered and its members affiliated.
1.2 To make summer bridge available for all those requiring the option.
1.3 To make bridge accessible to all interest in playing by maintaining an open door policy for all wishing to join.
1.4. To facilitate members to improve and upgrade their bridge skills.
Membership shall be open to both ladies and gentlemen and to those at all standards of play from beginner up. Individuals are entitled to play on two occasions before they are required to become members and pay the annual subscription fee. The fee, regardless of the time of year of joining, will be payable in full. Membership becomes effective on payment of Annual Subscription. Members who have not paid their Annual Subscription by 1 st December in any year will be deemed to have lapsed their membership.
Each year the A.G.M. shall determine the annual membership subscription fees. The committee shall determine table money from time to time.Affiliation fees should be paid to the C.B.A.I. by December 31 st , annually.
(A) COMPETITION RULES and GUIDELINES
In a major multi- night competition the same pairing must play together on both occasions to be eligible for a major prize otherwise they may get a session prize.
In president’s prize competition members must have played a minimum of 6 nights from the previous 1 st September to be eligible for a handicap.
Members must have played a minimum of 10 nights from the previous September to be eligible to win the Presidents Prize.
(B) GUESTS and VISITORS
The Club welcomes guests or visitors.
Table money must be paid, but they are not eligible for prizes on special competition nights listed on our calendar.
Any person who, under these rules, is ineligible for prizes, forms a partnership in pairs or team events, will automatically disqualify the full partnership or teams from the prizewinners.
Guests or visitors are entitled to play on two occasions, only, before they are required to become members and to pay the annual subscription fee. The fee, regardless of the time of year of joining, will be payable in full.
New members will not attract a handicap until they have played three times within the current, pre-defined, handicap calculation period. They and their partner can only qualify for a gross prize until they have received a handicap.
In the event of any member acting in such a manner as to bring the Club into disrepute or disrupt the smooth running of the Club or the enjoyment of other members, the committee shall have the right to reprimand such a member, and to warn them as to their future conduct. This may be done verbally or in writing. If the said member should continue to so act, with majority approval, the committee shall cancel such person’s membership with no refund.
(A) ORGANISATION and MANAGEMENT
The care of and responsibility for the proper administration of The Athlone ’72 Bridge Club shall be vested in the President and the Committee. They shall interpret and administer this Constitution and the playing rules of bridge, as laid down by the C.B.A.I. They must not act or allow members to act, in any manner which would militate against any player, and carry out the objectives of the Club at all times.
(B) THE COMMITTEE
- i. A Committee, elected each year at the Annual General Meeting, which shall be held in April/ May annually, shall manage the Club.
- The Committee shall put into effect all Resolutions passed at the Annual General Meeting and shall make such Regulations as they shall from time to time see fit, provided that such Regulations shall not alter, amend or repeal any Regulations embodied in this Constitution.
- The Committee shall consist of the President, Vice-President, Ex-Officio President, Hon. Secretary, Assistant Hon. Secretary, Hon. Treasurer, Assistant Hon. Treasurer, Tournament Directors, Handicap Committee Members, Scoring Committee Members and the Point Secretary. PRO and up to three other members.
- The Vice-President of the previous year shall be installed as President and shall nominate the new Vice-President at the A.G.M. each year. The election of Officers remains unchanged.
- No member of the Committee may serve for a period of more than three consecutive years.
- All Committee members must be nominated and seconded at the A.G.M. each year.
- To safeguard the Treasurer, two nominated members of the Club, who shall be appointed by the Committee, shall carry out the Annual Audit of the Accounts. Annual accounts shall be kept and made available to the Revenue Commissioners on request.
- The out-going President shall automatically become ex-officio a member of the incoming Committee if he/she wishes.
- The Committee have the right to co-opt any member should a vacancy occur.
- For any valid meeting of the above committee, there shall be at least five persons present.
- The Committee shall have the power to appoint sub-committees where necessary. The President shall ex-officio be a member of every committee
- All decisions reached at meeting of the Club shall be by simple majority and the Chair/President shall have a casting vote in the event of a deadlock.
- The President shall preside over all affairs of the Club and shall at all times be afforded the courtesy that the office demands. The President may preside over all or particular meetings of the Club by expressing such a wish.
- The Vice-President will substitute for the President.
- The Honorary Secretary and Honorary Treasurer shall administer the affairs of the Club as laid down at the Annual General Meeting and shall furnish all reports to the Annual General Meeting. The Assistant Hon. Secretary and Assistant Hon. Treasurer will substitute for the Hon. Secretary and Hon. Treasurer respectively.
- Tournament Directors shall run competitions as laid down by the C.B.A.I.
- The Scoring Committee comprises those who score the club competition results, as laid down by the C.B.A.I.
- The Handicap Committee shall comprise of an odd number of members to allow for majority decisions – minimum five members – and will oversee the management of club handicaps.
- The president may vary the handicaps subject to prior approval of the committee for the Presidents Prize only.
i. The income and property of the Club shall be applied solely towards the promotion of its main objective as set forth in this Constitution. No portion of the club’s income shall be paid or transferred directly or indirectly by way of dividend, bonus or otherwise howsoever by way of profit, to the members of the Club. No Officer shall be appointed to any office of the Club paid by salary or fees, or receive any remuneration or any other benefit in money or money’s worth from the Club in respect of such office. However, nothing shall prevent any payment in good faith by the Club of: i. Reasonable and proper remuneration to any member or Officer of the Club for any services rendered to the Club (other than as an Officer).
ii. Reasonable and proper out-of-pocket expenses incurred by any Officer in connection with their attendance to any matter affecting the Club.
iii. Fees, remuneration or other benefit in money or money’s worth to and Competition of which an Officer may be a member holding not more than one hundredth part of the issued capital of such Company.
iv. The Athlone ’72 Bridge Club shall have the power to borrow or raise money for the purposes and objectives of the said club in such a manner as the club shall think fit, and to secure the repayment of any money borrowed, raised or owing. Any financial borrowings are to be approved by club members at an AGM or EGM. (See Appendix 1)
(E) EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL MEETINGS
The committee may call an Extraordinary General Meeting at any time and must call one at the request, in writing, of one-third of the members of the Club. The secretary must give 2 weeks notice of the EGM. The subject matter and /or proposal for the EGM must be announced 2 weeks in advance of the meetimg.
(F) CHANGE TO THE CONSTITUTION
i. Alterations, amendments or changes to the Constitution shall be made only at a General Meeting of the members and shall require a simple majority vote of the members present and voting at the meeting, and there shall be at least 2 advance notice of any potential change.
ii. NO addition, alteration or amendment shall be made to the main objectives and/or the income clauses in this Constitution for the time being in force, unless the same shall have been previously approved in writing by the Revenue Commissioners.
(G) ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Notice of the date fixed for the meeting shall be announced two weeks preceding the Annual General Meeting. The AGM may elect life members provided that the number of life members does not exceed 5 at any time
The Club may be dissolved only by a majority of two thirds of the total members of the Club voting at the A.G.M. or E.G.M. The net assets shall then be divided evenly amongst the members of at least three years standing.
The clauses above show in italics (income) are required to be included in the Constitution of the Club if the Club is seeking a Tax Exemption as a Games/Sports Body under the Provisions of Section 235, Taxes Consolidation
Act, 11997 This document was agreed on at an EGM of the Athlone’72 club held on the 10 th February 2014 in the Shamrock Lodge Hotel Athlone.
Bridge is a friendly social game as well as being a competitive sport, players are expected to be courteous at all times while still observing and upholding the rules of the game.
At an EGM of The Athlone ’72 Bridge Club held at 7pm on 16 th September 2019 in The Shamrock Lodge Hotel, the amendment in section D (iv) was adopted by the club members. The meeting was presided over by the club President and the amendment was proposed by Lorraine Barry and seconded by Sr. Bernadette Mc Donnell.