History of the Greene County Volunteer Firemens Association

History of the Greene County Volunteer Firemen's

This information was printed in a leaflet containing the Constitution and By-Laws of the Greene County Firemen's Association, Inc. and the Ladies' Auxiliary of the Greene County Firemen's Association that was reprinted and amended in September 1971.

Transcribed and contributed by Sharon Palmateer

The Greene County Firemen's Association was organized at a meeting held at the quarters of the Francis N. Wilson Engine Company and Citizens' Hose Company, No. 5, in the Village of Catskill, in the year 1889, at which officers were selected to serve until the first annual convention, which was held in Catskill on July 16, 1889.
 The temporary officers were:
        President - George H. Scott, Coxsackie
        First Vice President - R. P. Barker - Catskill
        Second Vice President - J(ohn). Palmatier, Athens
        Third Vice President - F. G. Walters, Cairo
        Secretary - Will R. Post, Catskill
        Treasurer - John Sanderson, Athens
The Association was one of the first of the County firemanic organizations.  From it sprung the Tri-County Firemen's Association, comprising the Counties of Greene, Columbia and Ulster, which later developed into the Hudson Valley Volunteer Firemen's Association.
The Association was incorporated in March 1961.  The Certificate of Incorporation was filed March 29, 1961.  The organization shall be known as: The Greene County Volunteer Firemen's Association, Inc.
Constitution and By-Laws of the Greene County Firemen's Association, Inc.
Reprinted and As Amended to and Including September 9, 1971
ARTICLE 1 - Name and Object
Section 1.  This organization shall be known as the Greene County Volunteer Firemen's Association, Inc. of the County of Greene, New York.
Section 2.  The object of this organization shall be:
    (a) To foster and extend the interests, welfare and growth of firemanic interests and good feeling in the County of Greene, New York.
    (b) To provide entertainment and social intercourse for its members and, whenever it may be found necessary, to join with other organizations in endeavoring to minimize influences which menace the integrity of our Government, which each member pledges himself to defend.  In no event, shall this association become involved in partisan politics.
ARTICLE II - Officers and Elections
Section 1.  The officers of this Association shall consist of a President, First Vice-President, Second Vice-President, one representative from each company holding membership in the Association, except those from which the President, and First and Second Vice Presidents are chosen; a Secretary and a Treasurer, and a Financial Secretary, all of whom shall hold their respective offices for one year or until their successors shall be elected and shall qualify.  All of said officers shall be elected by ballot, at the annual meeting or convention, by a majority vote of members present, except the Company representatives whom the President shall appoint; and they shall take office immediately on the final adjournment of the convention at which they are elected, except that the Treasurer shall not be entitled to receive or hold the moneys of the Association until he shall have given a bond as hereafter provided.
Section 2.  There shall be an Executive Committee composed of the President, First and Second Vice Presidents and Secretary, Treasurer, Financial Secretary and ex-officio, with 11 other appointed members.
ARTICLE III - Duties of Officers
Section 1.  It shall be the duty of the President to preside at all meetings of the Association and of the Executive Committee; have general supervision of the business affairs of the Association, and perform such duties as are provided by the by-laws of the Association.
Section 2.  It shall be the duty of the First Vice-President to perform the duties of the President during the absence or inability to act of the President, and in case of the absence or inability to act of the First Vice-President, the duties shall devolve upon the Second Vice-President.  In the event of the absence or inability to act of all the afore-mentioned officers, the Executive Committee shall select one of its members to act as President.
Section 3.  It shall be the duty of the Secretary to received and answer all communications addressed to him, or which may be submitted to him for such purcise by the other officers of the Association, and to perform such other duties as may be required of him by the Executive Committee.  He shall make and keep a full record of the proceedings of each meeting of the Association and Executive Committee; he shall also present all communications, designed for that purpose, to the Association for action at the next meeting succeeding the receipt of the same.
Section 3A.  It shall be the duty of the Financial Secretary to handle all membership records and dues and the notification of all members for meetings.
Section 4.  It shall be the duty of the Treasurer to receive all moneys belonging to the Association, and pay the same out only upon the resolution of the convention, or upon the order of the President and Executive Committee, or a majority thereof, counter-signed by the Secretary.  He shall deposit all moneys belonging to the Association in such banks as may be approved by the Executive Committee, in accounts in the name of  the Association and so arranged that moneys can only be withdrawn therefrom upon vouchers signed by the President and Treasurer, and Secretary.  He shall provide bonds to the Association for himself, the Secretary and the Financial Secretary, with such sureties and in such amount as may be fixed by the Executive Committee.  Such bond shall be approved by the Executive Committee.  At the annual meeting, he shall make a full report of all receipts and disbursements with the vouchers for such disbursements and shall present to the Auditing Committee proper evidence of the amount on deposit to the credit of the Association in the several banks in which the funds of the Association shall be deposited.
Section 5.  It shall be the duty of the Executive Committee to transact all the business of the Association during the interval between the meetings of the Association.  It shall have power to reinstate delinquent or suspended organizations or members on such terms as to it may seem just and proper.  It shall have power to fix or change the time and day of the annual meeting provided that the matter be referred to it by any quarterly or special meeting or upon a request from the local committee of the place where the convention is to be held.  It shall be the duty of the Executive Committee to handle the booking of the conventions and it shall not expect booking over 5 years in advance.
Section 6.  The President shall annually appoint an Auditing Committee, to consist of three members.  It shall be the duty of such Committee to audit the books and accounts of the Secretary and Treasurer and Financial Secretary.  Said Committee shall not allow any claim against the Association as valid unless it is supported by a voucher showing in detail the various items for which a charge against the Association is made.  Such Committee shall report at the annual meeting.
Section 7.  The President shall annually appoint a Law Committee, to consist of not more than 3 members.  It shall be the duty of such Committee to attend to the legal affairs of the Association and to promote legislation in the interst of the volunteer firemen.  Such Committee shall report at the annual meeting.
Section 7A.  The President has the power to appoint any committees he deems necessary.
ARTICLE IV - Meetings and Quorum
Section 1.  The annual meeting of this Association shall be held in September of each year, at the convenience of the entertaining company or department, subject to the approval of the Executive Committee.  In addition, there shall be three quarterly meetings held each year at various places as invitations are received from member companies of this Association.  Quarterly meetings shall fall on the 1st Thursday of the month.
Section 2.  The Executive Committee shall meet upon the call of the President or upon the request of any three members thereof at the time and place designated in such call or request.  A majority of the members of the Executive Committee shall constitute a quorum.
Section 3.  At the annual quarterly meetings of the Association (30) thirty members shall constitute a quorum for business.
ARTICLE V - Membership and Dues
Section 1.  Every fire organization or association of active or exempt firemen in the several fire departments in the County of Greene, shall be entitled to representation in this Association, but not exceeding two delegates at each annual convention, so long as such organization or association shall be in good standing in this Association.  Out-of-County Organizations duly qualified, may join the Association as Social Members only.  They shall have no voice in the government or meetings of the Association, nor may they compete against County Companies or Organizations at Conventions, Drills, Field Days, etc.  Membership shall be subject to approval of the Association.  To qualify a company or department must be a bordering County company or department.  Individuals wishing to become social members shall be accepted only if their fire company or department is a social member.  All out-of-county guests for our annual convention will be invited by the Executive Committee except for the host company or department guests.
Section 2.  The membership fee to be paid by each organization upon becoming a member of this Association shall be ten dollars, and the members fee to be paid by each individual upon becoming a member shall be three dollars, which shall cover his dues for the then current year, except that a delegate shall not be chargeable with dues for the year in which he represents his organization as such.
       Membership dues - $3.00 - individual
       Membership dues - $10.00 - company or department
       Social member dues - $25.00 - company or department
       Social member dues - $5.00 - individual
Section 3.  The Financial Secretary shall notifiy each organization and member of the Association of the time and place of the next annual convention and the amount of dues owed by them respectively to the Association, at least 60 days before the holding of the annual convention in each year.
Section 4.  All credentials of delegates shall be delivered, and organizations and individual dues shall be paid to the Financial Secretary thirty days before the date of the annual convention.  No dues will be collected during the Convention.
Section 5.  All organizations and members shall forfeit membership in this Association and be dropped from its roll upon being in arrears.  The Financial Secretary shall report the financial standing of the organizations and individual members at each annual convention, for the information and action of the Association.
ARTICLE VI - Miscellaneous
Section 1.  Vacancies occurring in any office in the Association shall be filled by election by the Executive Committee until the next annual convention and election.  Inability to perform the duties of office shall be a vacancy for as long as such inability lasts and a temporary apponitment can be made.
Section 2.  A life member is a member with fifty (50) consecutive years and all officers since August 31, 1967.  Life members are exempt from dues.
Section 3.  The Association shall be the sole judge of the election, standing and qualifications of its membership.
Section 4.  The Association shall sponsor a Ladies Auxiliary, whose members can be any lady who is a mother, wife, daughter or sister of a member of the Greene County Volunteer Firemen's Association, Inc., active or honorary or of a volunteer firemen who is a member, active, exempt or honorary, of a fire company which is a member of the Greene County Volunteer Firemen's Association, Inc. or auxiliary that is a member of the Association.
Section 5.  The President shall appoint a chaplain from within the County and he will be exempt from dues.
ARTICLE VII - Rules and Order of Business
Section 1.  All matters of procedure and parliamentary law, not hereinbefore specifically provided for, shall be governed by or decided according to Roberts Rules of Order.
Section 2.  The order of business at the quarterly meeting annual convention shall be as follows:
        1.  Opening ceremonies.
        2.  Appointment of Committee on Credentials.
        3.  Acting on questions relating to members and dues.
        4.  Reading of minutes and action thereon.
        5.  Reports of Standing Committees.
        6.  Reports of Special Committees.
        7.  Reports of President, Secretary and Treasurer.
        8.  Report of Committee onCredentials.
        9.  Calling roll of Membership.
        10.  Unfinished business.
        11.  Miscellaneous business.
        12.  Fixing place of next annual convention.
        13.  Election of officers.
        14.  Installation of officers.
        15.  Closing of Convention.
Amendments, Etc.
Section 1.  No alteration or amendment to these By-Laws shall be adopted unless it shall be offered in writing at any meeting of the Association (other than an Executive meeting) but cannot be voted upon until the next successive meeting.  At the next successive meeting, it shall require a two-thirds vote of the members present for adoption.
Section 2.  All laws heretofore existing for the government of this Association are hereby repealed.   

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