Shire of Silver Rylle Customs and Practices A.S. XLVII
- Statement of Purpose
- Shire Meetings
- Decision Making Process
- Officer Requirements
- Selection of Officers
- Shire Events
- Amending the Customs and Practices
Statement of Purpose
These customs and procedures are for the use and running of the Shire of Silver Rylle (hereafter, Shire) of the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism). They may exceed but not supersede mundane laws, the Laws and Policies of the SCA Inc. or the East Kingdom. In any case where these customs and practices conflict with mundane laws, East Kingdom or Corpora laws and policies, those higher laws take precedence.
Membership requirements for the SCA are clearly delineated in Corpora; privileges pertaining to that membership are not the business of the Shire. Shire membership can be broken into two categories:
Society members residing within the Shire zip codes, and aged 14 years old or older are considered of age SCA Shire Residents (Shire Residents), and may take part in Shire elections, including those involving expenditure of Shire funds. Proof of SCA membership and home address may be required in order to vote. Absentee votes will be counted if delivered with proof of membership and residence prior to a vote taking place, and should be delivered to the Seneschal and one other Officer (preferably by email).
Those people who are not members of the Society, or whose home address is not within the Shire zip codes, or who is under age; but who actively participate within the Shire are considered Shire Members and may vote by show of hands on routine operational issues regarding the Shire (not elections of Officers or expenditures of funds).
3. Shire Meetings
All meetings and gatherings of the Shire shall be open to the general populace. This includes all Business Meetings, practices, A&S gatherings, events or demos announced or sponsored by the Shire or using any Shire resources.
Shire Business Meetings will be held on the first Thursday of each month at 7pm. The date and time may be changed due to Pennsic, holiday, or inclement weather, but should be done with as much advance notice as possible to allow members to attend. If elections or voting for the expenditure of funds are to take place at the meeting, at least 14 days’ notice must be given of a change in date, time or venue.
In order for an Official Shire Business Meeting to take place, the Seneschal or a representative needs to be in attendance and at least five other Shire Residents, two of whom must be Shire Officers or their representatives in order to form a quorum.
4. Decision Making Process
- Any proposal or agenda item that requires approval from the Shire membership can onlytake place at a Shire Business Meeting.
- All Shire Residents (see definition above) may participate in an election or in a vote
regarding the expenditure of funds. This includes Shire Residents not attending the meeting but voting absentee. All Shire Members may participate in a vote regarding operational or less formal issues.
c. Elections should be by ballot format. Other votes may be taken by a simple hand vote, though if there is any dissention or if it is requested, a ballot format should be used.
- Votes will be counted by the Exchequer and one other Officer (not the one being elected). If the Exchequer is being voted on or is not present, then another Shire Officer appointed by the Seneschal will fill in for the Exchequer. Results will be announced immediately.
- Officer selection, event approval (with budget), and large expenditures will be discussed at the Business Meeting in which they are raised. Final approval to be voted on at the next Business Meeting.
- Officers should attend a majority of Shire Business Meetings. If an officer or a representativecannot attend a meeting, the officer must contact the Seneschal with an officer’s report.
- Any problem with an officer’s performance that cannot be dealt with on a local level will behandled in accordance with Kingdom law.
6. Officer Requirements and Responsibilities
- Shire Officers must be Shire Residents.
- All Officers are required to be familiar with the Kingdom and Society Laws and Policies fortheir offices, and fulfill their obligations to the Shire.
- Each Officer is encouraged to have a deputy who is either knowledgeable of the duties ofthe office, or who is in training to assume the office at a future date.
- The Seneschal is required to have at least one Deputy.
- Officers should attend Shire Business Meetings to report to the populace. Should any Officerfail to report either in person, through their Deputy, or via report for three consecutive meetings, the Seneschal may choose to commence removal of office by contacting the appropriate Kingdom Officers.
7. Selection of Officers
a. Officer selection will be held every two years for these offices;
i. In even numbered years: Seneschal; Web-Minister; Minister of A&S; Chatelaine; Thrown Weapons Marshal; Fencing Marshal; Minister of Lists.
ii.In odd numbered years: Exchequer; Knight-Marshall; Herald; Chronicler; Archery Marshal; Quartermaster; Librarian; Chancellor Minor.
iii. New offices may be created by the Shire and added to the above list as suits the Shire’s needs.
b. The schedule for the selection of officers will be as follows;
i. January Business Meeting – (Reminder): A reminder of officer positions that are up for
selection should be announced to the Shire.
ii.February Business Meeting – (Nomination): Potential candidates (including Deputys)
must state their interest in holding a Shire office, to the Seneschal or Exchequer
(even year-Seneschal office only) at or before the Business Meeting.
iii. March Business Meeting – (Selection): At the Business Meeting, candidate(s)
should make a presentation, followed by questions. Afterwards, the candidate(s) should leave the meeting so Shire Members can discuss freely. After the discussion is over, Shire Residents will cast ballots, votes counted, and the candidates brought back in to learn of the decision. This process should continue for each position until all positions with candidates have been voted on.
c. Selection of a new Shire Officer shall be official only with the final approval of the appropriate Kingdom Officer.
- The officer-elect will work with the current officer and will assume the office in May. The Shire has the option to leave a non-required office vacant.
- In the event that an officer is unable to finish the term of office, a replacement would be nominated at the next regular Business Meeting, with selection to take place the following month. If the officer is unable to fulfill the duties of the office until a replacement can be selected, a stand-in should be appointed until the selection process is finished.
- People who wish to hold a currently vacant office should state their interest at a Business Meeting, with selection to take place at the following Business Meeting.
- In all cases where an officer is selected mid-term, that officer will serve out the remainder of that term.
- After 2 full terms of elected office, an officer should step down and take a year sabbatical
from any Shire office. This will allow the officer to re-energize and refocus, as well as allowing the office to benefit from new ideas and growth. Unless it is deemed necessary by the Kingdom, no officer will be elected for a third term without a year break.
- Official Shire communications, announcements and decisions take place at Shire Business Meetings.
- Formal email correspondence with a Shire Officer is acceptable and official only when the officer has offered to communicate electronically by placing his or her email address in SCA publications, by releasing it for individual use, or by initiating email correspondence for official business.
- No messages posted to bulletin boards or general email lists can be considered official communications.
- Specific email lists, Shire website, social media or groups designed to distribute information for the Shire may be used and are encouraged to help disseminate information, especially when they are used to clarify policy or topics under discussion. However, care should always be used as they are a public forum.
9. Shire Events
b. c. d.
A Shire Event is one that is sponsored and / or funded by the Shire.
A Shire event shall be proposed and decided on by a bidding process. A bid proposal must be presented to the Shire by the potential autocrat of the event, or a representative. The bid should specify the Autocrat, Head Cook, Reservation contact, site, date (and alternatives if any), theme, activities planned and proposed budget. The budget should have planned expenses, charges for all attendees and expected attendance. Any additional information the bidding Autocrat can make available will aid in the decision process.
If a Shire Event is to be announced in the Kingdom newsletter, there should be at least two months of publication. To ensure this, the timeline for bids will be as follows;
i. No less than 6 months in advance of the event, the bids need to be presented for discussion and suggestions at a Business Meeting.
ii.No less than 5 months in advance of the event, the Autocrat shall present at a Business Meeting the finalized bid, including a draft event announcement, for review and approval. If approved, the Autocrat will be allotted Shire funds.
iii. Within one month of approval, the site must be secured and then the event announcement submitted to the Kingdom newsletter.
If the Shire event does not need to be announced in the Kingdom newsletter, the Autocrat should present the bid far enough in advance for Shire support.
The Autocrat shall determine and allocate the event budget. The Autocrat shall require staff to request approval for any increase in the monies allotted to them. The Autocrat should try to stay within the proposed budget and should keep a running tab of expenditures to aid in doing so. The Autocrat or a representative should report at each Business Meeting on the current status of the event including expenditures.
Expenditures in excess of the approved budget may be reimbursed at the Shire’s discretion.
Amending the Customs and Practices
Any amendments to the Customs and Practices must be initiated and voted on at Shire Business Meetings.
All amendments require both a motion and a second.
Following discussion, the topic will be deemed tabled until the next Shire Business Meeting. The proposed Amendment will then be placed on the Shire email list, and any other method of communication utilized to get the information out to Shire Residents and Members.
24 hours before the next Shire Business Meeting, the Seneschal may choose to table the decision to vote on the Amendment if it is determined that more discussion and research needs to take place before the vote. That decision should be communicated to Residents and Members in the same manner as the proposed Amendment.
If a Shire Resident moves to table the decision for a further month, and it is seconded, the Seneschal may table any decision for one further month.
Following any further discussion, the amendment will be put to a vote and will require a two- thirds majority of the votes cast by the Residents of the Shire, including absentee ballots.
These By-Laws shall supercede any existing charter, by-laws, referendum, or standing rules for the operation and organization of the Shire of Silver Rylle.
Respectfully Written, Jayme Hume of Berwyk June 5, 2012