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Policies and Bylaws

The following bylaws were adopted at a Special Membership Meeting of the Stephentown Memorial Library Association on June 4, 1992 to replace the 1946 bylaws. They have since been amended on January 29, 1998, January 31, 2003, October 25, 2005, November 12, 2009, February 20, 2011, April 12, 2015, April 22, 2018, and September 1, 2020.


Article I: Name

The name of this library shall be the Stephentown Memorial Library. It shall be located in Stephentown, Rensselaer County, New York.

Article II: Purpose

Its purpose shall be to promote and encourage the development and maintenance of library services for public use by inhabitants of the town of Stephentown. Use by residents of neighboring communities is welcomed.

Article III: Membership
  1. Any person 16 years of age or older may become a member of the library by signing the membership record.
  2. All members are eligible to vote for Trustees at the Annual Meeting.
Article IV: Trustees
  1. The business and affairs of the Stephentown Memorial Library shall be managed and directed by a nine-member Board of Trustees.
  2. The Trustees shall establish the policies of the library and shall abide by all regulations.
  3. Two to three trustees shall be elected at each Annual Meeting. Trustees shall be elected for four-year terms running May 1st through April 30th. Trustees shall be eligible for nomination and election for two consecutive terms. However, a Trustee may be nominated for a third consecutive term by a majority vote of the Trustees, subject to re-election at the Annual Meeting.
  4. A Nominating Committee shall be appointed by the President at least two months prior to the Annual Meeting. The committee shall prepare a slate of Trustees, recommend the slate to the Board, post the slate in the library at least two weeks prior to the Annual Meeting, and present the slate for voting at the Annual Meeting. Nominations shall also be solicited from the floor of the Annual Meeting.
  5. Vacancies on the Board shall be filled by a majority vote of the Trustees. The person appointed shall serve until the next Annual Meeting, when they shall be nominated for election to the balance of the vacated term. At the end of the vacated term, the Trustee is eligible for nomination to serve their own two terms.
Article V: Officers
  1. The Board of Trustees, following the election of individual Trustees at the Annual Meeting, shall elect from its members a President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer.
  2. Officers shall be elected annually.
  3. Officers shall have the usual powers and duties associated with their office.
  4. Vacancies among the officers shall be filled at an election at a regular meeting, and a majority vote of the Trustees shall be necessary to hold an election.

Article VI: Meetings

  1. The Annual Meeting shall be held in April with the time and date to be determined by the Board no less than 30 days prior to the Annual Meeting. The annual reports of the Secretary, Treasurer, and Library Director shall be distributed, elections held, and old and new business transacted.
  2. Regular meeting of the Board of Trustees shall be held at least bimonthly, at dates and times to be established by the Board at the beginning of the library year and shall be open to the public except when individual personnel issues are being discussed (or as otherwise restricted by State Open Meeting Law). The dates and times of regular meetings shall be posted in the Library.
  3. The Secretary shall notify Trustees at least five and not more than ten days before each meeting.
  4. Special meetings may be held at the call of the President or any three Trustees; notice of special meetings shall be posted as soon as possible.
  5. A majority of the seated Board shall constitute a quorum.
  6. Business shall be conducted according to Robert’s Rules of Order.
Article VII: Committees
  1. An executive committee, which shall consist of five members, the officers of the Board of Trustees and one or more non-officer board members, shall conduct the business of the organization between regular meetings of the trustees. Non-officer members of the Executive Committee shall be nominated by the Executive Committee to the Board, and approved by the Board. Members of the Executive Committee shall serve for terms of one year. The Executive Committee shall have all of the powers and authority of the Board, which the Board may delegate to an Executive Committee except the Executive Committee may not do, perform or authorize any action or inaction which would jeopardize, impair or alter the existence of the nonprofit corporation, the non-profit character of the corporation, or the tax-exempt status of the corporation, including, without limitation, the status of the corporation under the Internal Revenue Code, €501(c)(3); amend or alter the Bylaws or Articles of Incorporation of the corporation; elect officers; elect or remove directors. The President, or in his/her absence the Vice President, shall preside at all meetings. A majority of the Executive Committee members shall constitute a quorum. The presiding officer may vote on all matters as to which he/she is not disqualified. Motions require an affirmative vote by three members in order to pass. The executive committee shall report all actions to the Board of Trustees.
  2. Other committees may be appointed as needed to serve or until discharged.
  3. The committee chairpersons shall be appointed by the Board.
  4. All members of the library shall be eligible to serve on committees.
Article VIII: The Library Director
  1. The Board shall appoint a Library Director who shall be the executive director of the policies adopted by the Board.
  2. The Library Director shall be responsible for the proper performance of duties as spelled out in the job description provided by the Board.
  3. The Library Director shall attend meetings of the Board. The Library Director shall have the right to speak on all matters under discussion at Board meetings and to offer advice, but shall not have the right to vote on any question.
Article IX: Amendments

Amendments, repeals or additions to these bylaws may be proposed in writing at any regular meeting of the Board of Trustees. Such change shall become effective only after a majority vote of the membership present at the Annual Meeting or a duly called special meeting for which notice of the proposed change has been given.