STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURES, UCA, INC.
The standard operating procedures are a set of procedures that have been carefully put together in order to clarify and or further explain several articles and sections of our adopted Bylaws. These procedures are not changes, merely clarifications to possibly dispel confrontation on certain issues relevant to operating the United Court of Austin, Inc. in a more efficient manner.
CODE OF CONDUCT
The code of conduct will be strictly enforced and applies to all court members, NO EXCEPTIONS!! First offense depending on severity will result in a verbal warning from the Board of Directors. Second offense will be suspension of title and privileges for a prescribed period of time designated by the Board of Directors. Third offense will be removal from United Court of Austin for the remainder of that reign or for one year depending on the severity of the offense.
- 1) All meetings of the United Court of Austin, Inc. both Board of Directors meetings as well as general membership monthly meetings will be ALCOHOL FREE. We must conduct ourselves as we would any business.
- 2) The General Membership, Monarchs, College of Monarchs, and Lifetime Titleholders shall conduct their actions with the utmost respect and integrity at all times. We must always reflect positively on the values and reputation of UCA. We must promote an environment free of harassment, bullying and abusive conduct, whether physical, verbal or visual. The Code of Conduct includes, but not limited to, all forms of Social Media, email, texting, meetings, public and private functions, and in our everyday lives.
- 3) Any infractions made that are considered to be morally, willfully, malicious and ethically damaging to another party, person or organization shall be grounds for discipline by the Board of Directors.
- 4) A written grievance will be submitted to the Board of Directors of The United Court of Austin for review. The Board of Directors will review the grievance and if a majority vote rules that the conduct has been breached then the Board of Directors have the right to take immediate action.
- 5) In this event, the Board of Directors must notify the person(s) in violation within thirty (30) days of the written grievance, so they may attend the Board of Directors meeting so they have the opportunity to speak.
- 6) The following penalty shall be imposed on the person(s) violating the Code of Conduct. Penalties are as follows:Line Members:
- 1st Penalty- Suspension of Title until a time designated by the BOD.
- 2nd Penalty- Suspension of title until end of the reign.
- 3rd Penalty- Revocation of membership for one (1) calendar year.
Lifetime Titleholders, Monarchs and College of Monarchs:
- 1st Penalty- Suspension of Title for six (6) Months.
- 2nd Penalty- Suspension of Title for one (1) calendar year.
- 3rd Penalty- Permanent suspension of title and revocation of membership for one (1) calendar year.
7) If said violation does not pass by majority vote of the Board of Directors present at said meeting, then the violation is null and void. The Board of Directors reserves the right to revise the Code of Conduct at any time.
UCA APPROVED CHARITIES
In an effort to raise awareness of the United Court of Austin, within our community, UCA will only raise funds for 501C3 charities which reside within or directly serve individuals in the “realm” of UCA as it is defined by our bylaws, with the exception of those organizations recognized, or approved by the ICS.
ARTICLE II, Section 2
In order to clarify Article II, Section 2 of the Bylaws that govern the United Court of Austin, Inc., the Board of Directors enacts that all membership applications must be accompanied by the corresponding dues as set at the first membership meeting of the new reign. Dues will not be accepted without an application. The Treasurer of the corporation will not accept these types of payments. If dues are mailed to the corporation without an application, the Treasurer will attempt to contact the payee with a phone call and or e-mail to obtain an application. If contact is successful, the Treasurer will agree to hold the dues for a period not to exceed 5 business days and allow the payee to submit an application. The monies will not be considered accepted or deposited until the date the application is received. If contact is not successful, the dues will be returned to the payee within 7 business days of receipt. Once the application is accepted, all dues paid to the corporation are non-refundable.
ARTICLE IV, Section 7
The secretary shall coordinate with the presiding officer of any meeting the agenda for the meeting. The order shall be as follows as prescribed by Robert’s Rules of Order.
- Reading of the Minutes of the previous meeting (and their approval)
- Reports of Boards and Standing Committees
- Reports of Special (Select) Committees
- Special Reports
- Unfinished Business and General Orders
- New Business
The Secretary will maintain a notebook with monthly dividers. Behind each divider, there will be a copy of the minutes for general meetings, special meetings, board meetings, and committee meeting minutes submitted by the record keeper or acting secretary of said meeting if the official secretary is not present. Also, behind each divider, there shall be all correspondence vital to the business of the Board of Directors or Organization as described in the Bylaws of the Corporation. The notebook will contain a copy of the Bylaws, Standard Operating Procedures, as well as any other information prescribed by the bylaws or Board of Directors. All minutes will
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be submitted typed, or in a manner approved by the board of directors. All minutes shall have a header containing the following information.
The United Court of Austin, Inc. Type of Meeting
Date of Meeting Location of Meeting
At the end of the fiscal year of the corporation, the Secretary will submit to the court a bound copy of all minutes and correspondence vital to the corporation for future audits, etc.
ARTICLE IV, Section 12
In that the member courts of the International Imperial Court System are regarded as “self-governing units” with the right to edit any and/or all protocol submitted for introduction during official and unofficial events with individual courts; the term of identification of a solitary (sole) (single) Monarch must meet the following criteria:
Absolute shall pertain only to a Monarch of the United Court of Austin who has been elected or appointed to serve as the solitary (sole) (single) Monarch of a particular reign; who begins their Reign, serves the entire Reign and ends said reign as the solitary (sole)(single) Monarch. Only after the re-crowning ceremony, during the stepping down of such a Monarch, shall a Monarch have secured the right and privilege to the usage of the term absolute in their protocol in the following prescribed manner:
His/Her Most Imperial Majesty Moniker
Absolute Emperor/Empress (with appropriate number) John/Jane Doe
AS PER ARTICLE IV, Section 13: (Effective July 19, 2009)
“In the event there are no certified candidates for either Emperor or Empress, the Board of Directors may; but shall not be required to, appoint a Regent Emperor and/or Regent Empress to be crowned at Coronation. Upon completion of the Reign; and all duties required of the office of Regent have been completed, the title of ‘Regent’ shall be removed during re-crowning ceremonies at Coronation, with full Monarch status bestowed.”
In the event that the Board of Directors of the United Court of Austin, Inc. feels that it is the best interest of the organization to appoint a Regent Emperor and/or Regent Empress the process shall be implemented as follows:
The Eligible person(s) shall submit a letter of interest no later than ten (10) days after the notification of the Board of Director’s decision for appointing a Regent Monarch. After the Letter(s) of Submission have been received and examined by the Board of Directors, the Board will go into a closed session; which was put into notice in the notification for appointment, to interview the eligible person(s). The Board of Directors shall invite the College of Monarchs to the closed session to participate in the appointment process. After the interviews of the eligible person(s) have been completed, then the Board of Directors and the College of Monarchs will
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cast an anonymous vote for the individual who they feel will be the appropriate choice for Regent Emperor and/or Regent Empress.
Once the votes are collected, either scenario can take place:
1. The votes are counted by the members of the Board of Directors during the closed session of the Board of Directors and notify the individual(s) that were or were not appointed, by majority vote at the closed session, so that they can make preparations for crowning, in full view of the public at Coronation.
Eligibility Qualifications shall be:
- A past monarch of the United Court of Austin.
- Have been a member in good standing of the corporation for the previous twelve (12)month period prior to the appointment of Regent Monarch;
- Have earned at least one-hundred fifty (150) points during the current reign.
- Sign a sworn statement that you are aware of the personal expenses incurred ifappointed and further attest that you are financially prepared to fulfill the obligations of Regent Emperor or Regent Empress. Your further attest that you realize the travel obligations and are prepared to meet such requirements;
Nominees may come from the male or female persona; i.e., should a past Empress wish to serve as Regent Emperor, she may submit her Letter of Interest, however, should such a situation occur, said Regent Emperor will NOT be permitted in their Empress (female) persona other than for one (1) local and/or one (1) state turnabout event per Texas Court for the remainder of the reign.
Upon appointment of Regent Monarch and at the time of crowning in full view of all those in attendance at Coronation, the newly appointed Monarch shall take an Oath of Office swearing their allegiance to the Corporation, the Members of the Corporation, the Board of Directors and the Community served by the Corporation and agreeing to obey and be bound by the Bylaws and the Articles of Incorporation of the United Court of Austin, Inc. At such time, the newly appointed regent Emperor and/or Regent Empress shall also affix his/her signature to a written counterpoint of such oath. Failure to comply with the Oath of Office shall result in automatic forfeiture of the title of Regent Emperor and/or Regent Empress and removal of a Monarch in accordance with Article IV, Section III of the Bylaws of the Corporation.
ARTICLE IV, Section 14(d)(2):
It is in the best interest of the United Court of Austin to promote community awareness, community spirit and community support. Any event produced by or benefitting a 501C3 charitable organization and with the approval of the Unite Court of Austin Board of Directors, all members shall earn 5 points for in-person participation, this does not apply to virtual events (mere attendance is not considered participation), subject to all point caps which cover all events as defined in the bylaws. Points are to be submitted to the point keeper no more than thirty (30) days of after each event. Failure to do so will result in loss of points.
ARTICLE VIII, Section 2:
The United Court of Austin shall maintain two bank accounts as described below.
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Operating Account: Seed money will be set at $2,500.00. This is money passed from one reign to the next. Any monies raised at brunch and/or the victory show after Coronation will automatically go toward the next Reign. The $2,500.00 shall be used for expenses incurred in the new reign including, but not limited to, future Coronation expenses, producing the Investiture event.
MonaLittlemoreScholarshipFundAccount: Thisaccountwillmaintainaminimumbalanceof $1,500.00 at all times. Upon reaching a balance of no less than $2,000.00, the funds will be dispersed at the next Coronation event reducing it to the minimum required balance of $1,500.00. Scholarship amounts may range from $500.00 – $2,500.00. The scholarship will be awarded to student(s) who volunteer their time to promote and/or support the Texas LGBT Community and excel in academics with a 3.0 GPA or higher, participate in extracurricular activities and are a positive role model within our community. All applicants must submit an application package that will include the following; Letters of Recommendation, Bio of Applicant, and Career Goals and Aspirations essay. Each application package will be reviewed and awarded by majority vote from the United Court of Austin Board of Directors and Rona Bare-It (aka Ron Spencer). The funds will be paid to the educational institution(s) of the applicant’s choice directly in said applicant’s name and not directly to the applicant.
UnitedCourtofAustinMonarchTravelFund: Tobetterdefinetheproceduresofthetravelfund, the following has been adopted for all funds related to travel. The travel fund may only be used for attending Out of State Coronations. Reimbursements are limited to funds in the travel fund; may only be reimbursed for transportation (out of state only) and lodging (out of state only); and shall be limited to such expenses specifically for the Reigning Monarch ONLY, i.e. a Reigning Monarch may share a hotel room with others; however, reimbursement will be for the shared percentage of the Reigning Monarch only. The same applies to gas receipt reimbursements and must clearly state the date, monetary amount, name and address (location) of the issuer of said receipts.
Except as noted below, reimbursement requests can only be submitted AFTER the Coronation has been attended. The ONLY exception is the reimbursement of an advance purchase of an airline ticket. All airline tickets must be used for their intended purpose. If, for any reason, the airline ticket is not used for its intended purpose, the Monarch in question will be put on suspension until such time of reimbursement.
Following submission of travel receipts to the Treasurer, the Reigning Monarch shall be presented a United Court of Austin check in the amount of reimbursement. Failure to submit the appropriate receipts as described herein will constitute forfeiture of reimbursement. Upon completion of the reign, the Treasurer shall audit the travel fund and all travel funds not expended shall be added to the amount returned to United Court of Austin Charities. Failure of a Reigning Monarch to comply with these provisions may be grounds for forfeiture of title and removal from office by the Board of Directors.
Recognition of Anniversary Monarchs at Coronation (Effective 09/01/08):
The United Court of Austin, Inc. is committed to recognizing members who have served as “Monarchs” of the organization. As such, the corporation has set forth the following procedures, which will be followed as “Official Protocol” to commemorate a monarch’s years of service. A special dispensation must be granted by the corporation to deviate from provisions set forth by
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this S.O.P. A formal written request must be submitted by or on behalf of an anniversary monarch. The dispensation must pass with a two thirds vote of the Board of Directors.
- An anniversary will be celebrated at the completion of every five years of service from his or her “Step Up”. All anniversary monarchs will be honored with a formal presentation. The monarch may choose either a “Walk” or an “Act” as defined below.
- 2. Presentations are defined as follows:
- A “Walk” is defined as an announcement where the recipient enters the hall,approaches the Dias and is greeted by the Reigning Monarch(s). A walk is limitedto two minutes in duration.
- An “Act” is defined as a performance of notable quality. Acts will only be grantedto members that have earned at least 75 points, as per stated by our bylaws, during the fiscal year that ends with the event known as coronation in which their fifth, tenth or subsequent anniversary is celebrated. An act cannot exceed 6 minutes in duration. This can be a solo or duet act. Furthermore, back up dancers are allowed in said “act”.
RECORDS RETENTION – SCOPE
All members, directors and officers of The United Court of Austin, Inc. must comply with the document retention requirements within this record retention policy.
The corporate records of The United Court of Austin, Inc. (hereafter the “Organization”) are important assets. Corporate records include essentially records produced by members, whether paper or electronic. A record may be as obvious as a memorandum, an email, a contract, or a case study, or something not as obvious, such as a computerized desk calendar, an appointment book, or an expense record.
The law requires the Organization to maintain certain types of corporate records, usually for a specified period of time. Failure to retain those records for those minimum periods could subject the member or the Organization to penalties and fines, cause the loss of rights, obstruct justice, spoil potential evidence in a lawsuit, place the Organization in contempt of court, or seriously disadvantage the Organization or its clients in litigation. It is a crime to alter, falsify or destroy a document in order to prevent its use in an official proceeding.
The Organization supports the maintenance of appropriate records about its operations. This policy is meant to establish the requirements for document destruction and end the accidental or innocent destruction of necessary documents.
Specific documents, identified below, are subject to a retention schedule and should not be destroyed until the expiration of the schedule.
An important exception to note is that if you believe, or the Organization informs you, that corporate records are relevant to litigation, or potential litigation (i.e. a dispute that could result in litigation), then you must preserve those records until the Organization determines the records are no longer needed. This exception supersedes any previously or subsequently established destruction schedule for those records. If there is a question about whether a document should be retained or destroyed, it should be referred to the Board President.
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A) Financial Records
Financial records, bank statements, invoices, expense reports, proof of deductions, and other documents should be maintained for at least 7 years from the date of filing the applicable tax return. Year-end financial statements, audit reports and 990 forms should be maintained permanently and should be available for public inspection upon request.
State and federal statutes require the Organization to keep certain member information, including membership applications. The Organization should also keep personnel files that reflect performance reviews and any complaints brought against the Organization or individual members under applicable state and federal statutes. The Organization should also keep all final memoranda and correspondence reflecting performance reviews and actions taken by or against members in the member’s personnel file. Member records should be maintained permanently for current members and for 4 years after a member’s termination/resignation.
C) Corporate Records
Incorporation documents, including certificate and formation, bylaws, and related documents should be kept permanently in the corporate records. Meeting minutes and related documents should also be retained in perpetuity in the corporate record book. Tax-exemption documents, including application for tax exemption (IRS form 1023), IRS determination letter, and any related documents should be kept permanently in the corporate record book and should be available for public inspection upon request.
D) Press Releases/Public Filings
The Organization should retain permanent copies of all press releases and publicly filed documents under the theory that the Organization should have its own copy to test the accuracy of any document a member of the public can theoretically produce against the Organization.
Legal counsel should be consulted to determine the retention period of particular documents, but legal documents should generally be maintained for a period of 10 years.
Final, executed copies of legal agreements and contracts, such as hotel and bus contracts, should be maintained for 3 years after their expiration. Publicly filed contracts should be maintained longer.
G) Electronic Mail
E-mail and correspondence that is transitory in nature does not need to be retained. Email that need to be saved should be either:
- i) Printed in hard copy and kept in the appropriate file; or
- ii) Downloaded to a computer file and kept electronically or on disk as aseparate file.
The retention period depends on the subject matter of the email, as covered elsewhere in this