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Constitution of Downderry and Seaton Residents Association - DaSRA

1. Name
The name of the Association is:

Downderry and Seaton Residents Association - DaSRA
The Association is an unincorporated organisation with unlimited liability

2. Area Covered
The villages of Downderry and Seaton, Cornwall

3. The Objectives of the Association

a) To represent the interests of residents of Downderry and Seaton as distinct from Deviock Parish as a whole

b) To play a lead role in safeguarding assets deemed to be of community value, and to build a Community Fund to address and support local needs

c) To take appropriate action to ensure that any proposed developments are sustainable, appropriate to and in character with Downderry and Seaton.

d) Where the interests of the villages of Downderry and Seaton overlap with those of other areas of Deviock Parish, the Association will liaise with other organisations, where they exist, that represent those areas to the mutual advantage of all.

e) To encourage and support the social life of Downderry and Seaton residents, working with existing clubs and societies where appropriate.

f) To be non party-political.

g) To represent the majority views of the community as best that can be judged.

4. Equalities and Diversity

a) The Association will actively seek to promote equal opportunities within the community and within its membership.

b) The Association will value diversity, not discriminating on the grounds of age, disability, race, faith, gender or sexual orientation and promote good relations with all members of the community.

c) The Association will ensure that, wherever possible, meetings will be held in venues that are accessible.

d) The Association will set out ways in which members can contribute their views, and consider how the needs of individual members may be addressed.

e) The Association recognises that all sections of the community have a positive contribution to make to the life of our community. The Association will represent the interests of all residents to the best of its ability and carry on the day-to-day business of the Association in an efficient, fair and responsive way.

f) The Association will provide all members with appropriate information and support and make them feel valued and welcome at all times.

5. Membership

a) Membership of the Association shall be open to residents (full or part-time) of the villages of Downderry and Seaton. Associate Membership will be open to individuals /businesses who do not live in the village but are interested in helping the Association achieve its aims.

b) Full Members have voting rights. Associate members do not have voting rights

c) Membership shall be on a household basis.

d) A copy of the Constitution, details for contact with DaSRA ), information regarding planned meetings and how to include an item on agendas of those meeting will be available to all members

e) The Committee will communicate information through a variety of forums to make it available to residents e.g. DASRA website, social media sites, Nut Tree monthly Newsletter, local notice boards.

6. Code of Conduct

The Committee has agreed that it is appropriate to establish a Code of Conduct to be adhered to by residents attending meetings of the Downderry & Seaton Residents Association. The following conditions will apply to all residents deemed Members of the Association.

a) All Committee and Association members must comply with the Constitution and its Code of Conduct at all times. Any serious breach of the Constitution or Code of Conduct may result in Members (including Committee Members) following a majority vote of the Committee, being asked to resign and if appropriate, termination of their membership.

b) Committee members must not divulge any Association business which is treated as confidential to other persons or organisations.

c) Correspondence sent on behalf of the Association must be agreed by the Chairperson or an Officer and held on file. Any Committee member failing to attend meetings on three consecutive occasions without reasons accepted by the Committee will be contacted by the Chairperson. If, subsequent to this, the member’s non-attendance continues, they will be deemed to have resigned from the Committee.

e) Members shall conduct themselves in a manner that will not cause offence to others. Harassment, bullying, intimidation, or discriminatory behaviour will not be tolerated and are grounds for suspension of the individual(s) concerned. The Chairperson and Committee members have the right to warn the member(s) of their inappropriate behaviour. If this persists they will be suspended until further notice.

f) Notification of suspension or termination of membership must be given in writing to the member with a copy of the Constitution attached.

g) Any member who has been suspended or had their membership terminated shall have the right to appeal. If a member wishes to appeal they have the right to ask the Secretary to arrange a special Committee meeting to hear their appeal.

h) Members must not personalise issues, and should be willing to recognise that everybody Is entitled to express their opinion without unduly preventing progress of discussion.

i) In situations where votes are required voters should always be prepared to accept the majority decision and not take such a decision as any form of personal slight or criticism.

j) Members cannot receive any payment from the Association other than for bona fide expenses agreed by the Committee and approved in advance. Expense claims must be submitted to the Treasurer at least seven (7) days before the next scheduled Committee meeting.

k) Members must never use their position to seek preferential treatment for themselves, their family, colleagues or friends. Nor should they use their position to be treated more or less favourably when requesting services from the Council (Parish or County) or any other organisation.

7. Organisation

a) The Association shall be managed on behalf of its members by a Committee, members of which shall be elected at the Annual General Meeting.

b) The Committee shall monitor the work, finances and membership of the Association.

c) The Committee shall have, as a minimum, the following officers: a Chairperson, a Secretary and a Treasurer. Incumbents of these roles shall be elected at an Annual General Meeting. The Committee will also include a named person or persons that Parish or County Councillors can contact for consultation.

d) In the interests of avoiding potential conflicts of interest, whilst serving County or Parish Councillors may sit as members of the Committee, they shall not occupy the posts of Chairperson, Secretary or Treasurer for the Association.

e) The Committee shall have a minimum of six (6) and a maximum of (12) members at any one time

f) The quorum for Committee meetings shall be 5. This quorum shall be applied when making decisions other than at meetings.

g) Committee members shall declare any potential conflict of interest and withdraw from discussion and voting where such a conflict exists.

h) A minimum of three (3) Committee meetings will be held in each calendar year.

i) Residents agreeing to become Members of the Management Committee adhere to the following role and responsibilities:

  • To be a resident of Downderry or Seaton
  • To be available to attend quarterly meetings and other additional meetings called, as considered necessary, to address issues that require urgent/active attention.
  • To commit themselves to playing an active role as a Committee Member
  • To agree to take on any additional remit as may be required by the Management Committee.
  • To be a representative of the Association at all times, and to take appropriate opportunities to inform residents about the role and activities that the Association offers the community

8. Duties of Officers

a) All the officers of the Association have a duty to further the objectives of the Association.

b) The Chairperson shall conduct the meetings of the Association, If the Chairperson is absent, another Committee member, nominated by the Chairperson, will take over.

c) The Secretary is responsible for convening all meetings and giving relevant notice to

members. The Secretary shall ensure that a proper record (paper and/or electronic) is kept of all meetings of the Association and its Committees in the form of minutes. The Chairperson /Secretary shall keep a record of all correspondence, consultation and activities carried out on behalf of the Association, and make them available as required by the Committee or general meeting. The Secretary shall maintain a register of all Officers and Committee members. The Membership Secretary shall maintain a register of all members of the Association and, in doing so, comply with relevant legislation including Data Protection.

d) The Treasurer shall oversee all banking and financial arrangements outlined in the Finance section of the constitution, be responsible for keeping proper accounts of income and expenditure and report on the Association’s financial matters to meetings of the Committee and at the Annual General Meeting.

e) Cheques, transfers and other banking instruments or instructions shall be signed by the Treasurer and at least one (1) other nominated signatory who must also be a member of the Committee.

9. Annual General Meeting

a) The Association shall hold an Annual General Meeting once each calendar year and not more than fifteen months shall pass between one Annual General Meeting and the next.

b) The Annual General Meeting shall: -

1. Agree the minutes of the last Annual General Meeting

2. Receive an Annual Report from the Committee

3. Present a statement of accounts to members

4. Elect Committee members for the coming year

5. Be a forum for residents to raise any points of concern to the community at large and consider any resolution(s) arising

6. Vote on amendments to the Constitution

c) Nominations for the Committee shall be made at the Annual General Meeting

d) Nominees must be present at the Annual General Meeting unless unable to attend and must agree to the nomination either in advance of, or during, the meeting.

10. Extraordinary General Meetings

An Extraordinary General Meeting may be called by the Committee or by petition signed by at least 20 residents and presented to the Committee.

11. Finance

a) An accurate record of income and expenditure to each March year-end must be produced each year at the Annual General Meeting and copies made available to members on request.

b) The accounts should be open to inspection by members on request

c) All monies raised by or on behalf of the Association shall be applied to further the objectives of the Association and for no other purpose.

d) The Association will carry out any appropriate external scrutiny and/or audit of the accounts as may be required by current legislation.

e)Accounts shall be opened in the name of the association. Payment shall be authorisation by two nominated committee members, namely Chair, Treasurer and or Secretary. Prior to completing the transaction, payment details and authorisation to be recorded on the audit document. Payments will be made via online banking or cheque by either the Treasurer or Chair.

f) Signatories must not be related to, or be members of, the same household.

12. Dissolution of the Association

a) The Committee, or, if a Committee no longer exists, a majority of remaining members of the Association, can propose that the Association should be dissolved. They must give at least fourteen (14) days notice to all eligible members that a meeting is taking place, proposing to dissolve the Association. For the sole purpose of dissolution a quorum need not apply, and the Association may be dissolved by a two-thirds majority of those present.

b) Any assets remaining after all liabilities have been settled shall be applied for the benefit of the community in accordance with the objectives of the Association or donated to an agreed local charity.

Constitution/ DaSRA /30.4.2024

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