CORPORATE BYLAWS of
SOUTH JERSEY INTERGROUP ASSOCIATION
Revised: 12/95, Amended 8/98, Revised 1/03, Revised: 9/09, Revised 3/23, Accepted 6/21/23
Definitions of terms used in this document may be found on the last page.
Article 1: Name and Organization
The Organization shall be called South Jersey Intergroup Association, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as IG). It was incorporated in November, 1978 as a New Jersey Non-Profit Corporation, for charitable and educational purposes under all applicable Laws.
Article 2: Statement of Purpose
The purpose of the IG is to serve and support Member Groups in Southern NJ by providing a means for alcoholics and the general public to contact Alcoholics Anonymous (hereinafter referred to as A. A.); to offer the program of A. A. to various institutions; to facilitate public awareness of A. A. and the means by which to contact the fellowship; to provide activities from time to time for the members and friends of A. A.; and to promote unity and cooperation among A. A. Member Groups in the area. It shall be the function of the IG to act as a clearinghouse for information related to A. A. The IG shall maintain a central office with the resources as required for activities related to carrying the message of A. A. to the Southern New Jersey community.
These activities may include, but are not limited to:
- Maintenance of a 24 hour telephone answering service;
- Purchase and sale of literature; (A. A. Literature)
- Publication of a local area Meeting List;
- Periodic publication of a Newsletter and other bulletins;
- Operation and maintenance of a Public Informational website;
- Development and maintenance of a “Twelfth Step List”;
- Organization and maintenance of a Member Group List;
- Sponsorship of Alcathons, sober social events and other related functions.
Article 3: A. A. Traditions
These Articles of Association are based upon, and in the spirit of, the Twelve Traditions of A. A.; said Traditions should be followed in every given situation. Questions about the application of the Traditions shall be referred by the IG Chairperson to the Trustees, who shall make their recommendations to the IG body as soon as possible.
Article 4: Membership
All A. A. Groups located in Burlington, Camden, Cumberland, Gloucester, and Salem Counties, as well as the immediate surrounding areas, are entitled to participate in and encouraged to have representation in the IG body. It is suggested that Member Groups select or elect an IG Representative and an Alternate Representative to attend the monthly meetings of the IG body.
IG shall have no control over the internal affairs, the management of, or the conduct of any Member Group. The intent of the IG is to provide a common place to share A.A.’s experience, to foster the unity and strength necessary to meet common problems, and to preserve the complete independence of each individual Member Group. The Member Groups are encouraged to support the activities undertaken by IG, where Group cooperation is desired. Any Member Group may withdraw from this association at any time.
IG encourages that all member Groups register with A. A.’s General Service Office.
Article 5: Effective Intergroup Action
IG action (Motions) may be instituted by the IG Steering Committee, any of its Members, or Member IG Representatives. Such Motions shall be submitted in written form by the originator, and should be submitted to the IG Secretary before the beginning of the IG meeting.
The ideal path for a new Motion is for it to be presented at the Steering Committee meeting, where it can be discussed and debated openly. A simple majority at Steering will move the Motion to New Business at the following week’s IG Meeting. The Motion can then be typed up and correctly worded to avoid confusion when presented at the IG Meeting.
Upon receiving a Second on the Motion, each Member Group is entitled to one vote. Committee Chairpersons and Co-Chairs shall not vote at IG meetings except during elections, replacement of Panel or Committee Chairs, or other Motions that have not passed through the Steering Committee. Committee Chairs and Co-Chairs, also serving as IG Representatives, may vote on behalf of their Group.
Minority opinion will always be heard, and a second vote considered if warranted by a show of hands.
Any motion which gets a 67% majority at the IG Meeting passes.
A motion which does not pass shall not be resubmitted for a period of 24 months.
Article 6: Nominating Committee
In order to elect IG officers as referenced in Article 7, The IG Panel will ask the Trustees to serve as a Nominating Committee at the September meeting of Odd Numbered Years. Also, up to five (5) names will be submitted (from the IG Representatives) to serve as additional members of the Committee. At the November IG meeting, the Nominating Committee will present their selection of candidates in accordance with the current guidelines. Nominations will also be accepted from the floor. At the December Meeting, elections will be conducted by the Nominating Committee using the Third Legacy Procedure as outlined in The A.A. Service Manual. The newly elected Officers will begin their term at the January Steering Committee
meeting following the elections. It is suggested that the retiring panel attend the January Steering meeting to help “pass it on” to the newly elected panel.
Article 7: Officers
The IG Representatives shall elect as their Trusted Servants: a Chairperson, a Vice Chairperson, a Secretary, an Assistant Secretary, a Treasurer, an Assistant Treasurer and any other Officers as they deem necessary to coordinate carrying of the AA message. These Trusted Servants shall be elected to a two (2) year term as outlined in this Article. The functions of these Officers are as follows:
Chairperson: Shall be available to coordinate activities of the other Officers and Committee Chairs. Said Chairperson shall preside at IG meetings, expressing no opinion either for or against any Motion on the floor while occupying the Chair. The Chairperson may preside at Steering Committee meetings in the absence of the Vice Chairperson.
Vice Chairperson: Shall preside as Chairperson of Steering Committee, expressing no opinion either for or against any Motion on the floor while occupying the Chair, as well as preside as the Chairperson of IG Meetings in the absence of the Chairperson.
Treasurer: Shall keep an accurate account of all IG financial affairs, both income and disbursements, reporting same to the IG Steering Committee, as well as the IG Representatives.
Assistant Treasurer: Shall assist the Treasurer and assume their duties in the absence of the Treasurer.
Secretary: Shall take minutes at IG meetings and see that minutes are distributed to Member Group Representatives in a timely manner. Also shall perform any such recording and clerical duties as the Trustees or Panel may request.
Assistant Secretary: Shall be secretary for the Steering Committee. The duties of Secretary and Assistant Secretary may be performed by one in the absence of the other.
If both the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson are absent, another Officer or Committee Chair shall preside at that meeting. All Officers shall be ineligible to vote at an IG meeting
To be eligible for nomination and election, it is suggested a candidate meet the following criteria:
- For the positions of Chairperson, Vice – Chairperson, Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer, continuous sobriety for a minimum of the past five (5) years. For all other positions, continuous sobriety for a minimum of the past three (3) years.
- Member of a participating home group.
- Commitment to IG service either through the position of IG Officer, Representative, or alternate Representative, or through an IG Service Committee.
The term of office for ALL elected officers shall be for two (2) years. The Chairperson shall not be eligible to serve for two (2) consecutive terms. Any interruption in sobriety will result in automatic disqualification from office. In the event of a vacancy of an elected Officer, a replacement to fill out the remainder of the term shall be appointed by the balance of the elected panel, subject to approval by the IG Representatives.
Article 8: Trustees
The Trustees shall consist of a group of three (3) to five (5) members. The Trustees shall serve in the capacity of “Elders” in advising the IG Body and IG Steering Committee on application of these Corporate Bylaws, the 12 Traditions and 12 Concepts of A.A. as they directly relate to issues and actions under consideration by this IG.
- The Trustee candidates will be presented at the November meeting of IG by the Nominating Committee as set forth in Article 6 above. Elections will be conducted by Third Legacy Procedure at the December meeting of IG.
- The Trustees shall serve a term of four (4) years, thus ensuring continuity of leadership. Two (2) or three (3) Trustees will be elected in each election cycle.
- Minimum 10 years of current continuous sobriety
- History of Service at the Intergroup level
- Minimum three (3) years service within the fellowship
- Resident of the area served by IG
- To fill a vacancy of a Trustee, replacement shall be appointed by the elected Officers of IG with the approval of the IG Representatives to fill out the remainder of the term. The above qualifying criteria shall apply.
A majority would constitute a quorum of the Trustees.
- The Trustees would meet at least twice a year, additionally if determined by the Chairperson to be necessary.
- The Trustees determine who will be their spokesperson for the Steering Committee.
Article 9: Committee Chairpersons
Subject to approval by IG Representatives, the IG Officers may establish new committees usual to the operations of IG and select Chairpersons for those Committees. Committee Chairpersons, in turn, will select a Co-Chairperson, all to serve a two (2) year term in accordance with the spirit of rotation. It is suggested that both the Chairperson and Co-Chairperson have a minimum of two (2) years continuous sobriety. Any interruption of sobriety would result in automatic disqualification. In the event of a vacancy, a replacement to fill out the remainder of the term shall be by appointment of the elected panel, subject to approval by the IG Representatives.
Article 10: Finance
IG shall be financed by voluntary contributions from the Member Groups, and the ongoing activities of the IG Committees. Each Group is free to determine the amount of its contribution to IG as suggested by their own Group Conscience. Additional financial support may be obtained by any method as suggested in the “A. A. Guidelines – Central or Intergroup Offices.”
The IG Steering Committee, consistent with the recommendations of the Budget and Finance Committee or IG as a whole, may adopt protocol to insure prudent stewardship of all IG funds. Such protocol may cover traditional and electronic banking, transfer of funds; inventory, servicing, replacement and disposition of equipment and materials; government reporting and payment of taxes; and the oversight of all enterprise accounts.
Article 11: Reports
Accurate and complete minutes of the activities of IG meetings shall be mailed or emailed to the designated representative (s) of the Member Groups monthly. These reports shall include a Treasurer’s report.
Article 12: Steering Committee
The IG Steering Committee, as established in Articles 7 through 9, shall consist of the panel of elected IG Officers, IG Committee Chairpersons and Co-Chairpersons, and a Representative from the Trustees. The IG Steering Committee shall hold regular business meetings prior to the regular monthly IG meetings. The IG Steering Committee meeting is open to all members of the A.A. Fellowship, with only IG Steering Committee members having a vote. However, the IG Steering Committee may request information from third parties with regard to any specific issue.
The IG Steering Committee is chaired by the Vice-Chairperson, who shall preside over the meeting and may express no opinion either for or against any motion on the floor while occupying the chair, voting only in the event of a tied vote.
The quorum necessary for the IG Steering Committee to conduct business shall consist of sixty (60%) percent of the Committee membership. In the event a Committee Chairperson is absent, the Co-Chairperson shall be counted as his/her representative.
It shall be the purpose and responsibility of the Steering Committee to administer the day-to-day operation of the IG Office and the Committees operating there from. To this end, the IG Steering Committee may adopt such methods of operation and procedural controls required for the efficient and responsible functioning of the IG Office. None of these procedures may be enacted if they conflict in any way with the Twelve Traditions and / or the Twelve Concepts of A.A.
If the IG Office is involved in the ongoing sale of any materials or services, as permitted by the Twelve Traditions, and suggested as proper in the “A. A. Guidelines –Central or Intergroup Offices,” a strict accounting of all monies received or expended shall be made to the Treasurer each month and all documents pertinent to such items shall be retained by the Treasurer.
A physical inventory count of sales materials shall be conducted at least once each calendar year, and the results made available to the IG Steering Committee.
The IG Steering Committee shall be empowered to cause all bills arising from the operation of the IG Office and/or the maintenance of equipment essential to the operation of the IG Office to be paid by the Treasurer from IG funds; and a complete record of all such disbursement, along with corroborating documents, shall be maintained by the Treasurer. The IG Steering Committee shall be authorized to spend any sum of up to two (2) percent of the annual budgeted expenses for the purchase of additional supplies, materials, or equipment deemed necessary for the efficient operation of the IG Office. Expenditures above said amount shall require approval by the IG Body.
Article 13: General Meeting of Intergroup
Regular meetings of the South Jersey IG shall be held at a place where IG Representatives may conduct business. Such meetings shall be held at a site of sufficient size to accommodate the Membership in attendance, and not less frequently than six (6) times annually. The necessary quorum to conduct business shall consist of fifty per cent (50%) of the average number of IG Representatives or their alternates attending IG Meetings for the previous 12 months.
Article 14: Removal of Elected Officers from Office
Any elected Officer or Trustee may be removed from office for cause by a vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the Steering Committee at any regular or special meeting of IG.
Article 15: Paid Employee(s)
The IG shall employ, as needed, office staff. Hiring of office employee(s) shall be conducted by a Hiring Committee consisting of the Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, and one other elected Officer, advised by the Trustees. Candidates must resign any Elected or Committee Chairperson position within IG if hired. All applications must be received in writing, and will be reviewed by the committee. Compensation and work schedule shall be reviewed by the elected officers. Specific duties and protocols are outlined in the employee manual. Termination of employment can only be initiated by the employee or a majority of the elected officers and must be approved by the IG Steering Committee.
Article 16 – Amendments
These Articles may be amended by a 2/3 majority vote of the attending representatives at any regular IG meeting, provided that a notification announcing the intention of such proposed amendments is included in the Minutes of IG for two (2) consecutive months preceding the meeting that the proposed amendments are scheduled be voted upon. In addition, a copy of the proposed amendments shall be attached to the Minutes of those two preceding meetings.
Article 17 – Dissolution of the Intergroup
In the unlikely event that the IG should cease to function and need to be dissolved, all assets and proceeds shall be distributed to other A. A. tax exempt organizations. No assets or proceeds from this corporation shall inure to the benefit of any individual or individuals. An accurate inventory of the disposition of such final assets and proceeds shall be retained for future reference.
Intergroup Representative: Group Representative selected or elected by each Member Group to vote on behalf of and represent them in South Jersey Intergroup Association.
Committee Chairperson: Individual trusted with coordinating the activities of their respective committee. See Article 9:
Officers: Individuals elected to serve Intergroup by facilitating communication and the ongoing operation of South Jersey Intergroup Association. See Article 7:
Trustees: Group of “Elders” serving in an advisory capacity on matters concerning the Intergroup Bylaws, 12 Traditions and 12 Concepts of A. A. See Article 8:
Steering Committee: Operational group consisting of the Elected Officers, Committee Chairs, Co-Chairs and advising Trustees. See Article 12:
Panel: Collective description of all the elected Officers of South Jersey Intergroup Association.
Hiring Committee: A committee formed specifically to hire Intergroup paid staff, consisting of the Intergroup Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and one other elected Officer, advised by the Trustees. See Article 15.