Rules of the Austrian Philatelic Society
(as amended on 26 September 2021 )

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    Purpose and Aims

  1. The Society shall be known as the AUSTRIAN PHILATELIC SOCIETY (abbreviated to APS where appropriate).

  2. The APS is established for the study and encouragement of philately, pertaining particularly to Austria and related territories; and in particular for the protection and guidance of members, and for the detection and exposure of philatelic forgeries and frauds.

  3. The APS may circulate exchange packets to members; publish a magazine; maintain a lending library; hold a Postal Auction (primarily of members' material); publish philatelic works; arrange occasional philatelic gatherings; and carry out any other relevant activity approved by the Executive Committee.

  4. The APS shall encourage the formation of self-supporting local groups of members.

  5. Membership & Subscriptions

  6. The APS shall consist of (a) Ordinary members who, if under eighteen years of age, shall be guaranteed by a person above this age; and (b) Honorary Life Members, who shall have all the privileges of ordinary membership.

  7. Candidates for ordinary membership shall make written application to the Honorary Membership Secretary who shall at discretion either admit the applicant to membership or lay the application before the Executive Committee for consideration. The Executive Committee shall have the power to refuse any application without assigning a reason.

  8. Honorary Life Members shall, only upon the recommendation of the Executive Committee, be elected at an Annual or an Extraordinary General Meeting in recognition of services to philately or to the APS. They shall pay no subscription.

  9. The 'APS year' shall run from 1 April of each calendar year to 31 March of the following year. The Annual Subscription is due on the first of April each year; the amount shall be determined from time to time at an AGM. If it is not paid before the 1st of October of that year, membership will be deemed to have lapsed.

  10. Any member changing his address or wishing to withdraw from the APS shall inform the Honorary Membership Secretary in writing. All notices posted to the address last notified to the Honorary Membership Secretary shall be considered as duly delivered. The list of members shall remain confidential to the Officers of the APS.

  11. Officers & Governance

  12. The Officers of the APS shall be an Honorary President, Honorary Chairman, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Treasurer, Honorary Membership Secretary, Honorary Packet Secretary, Honorary Editor, Honorary Librarian, Honorary Publicity Officer, and Honorary Auctioneer. They shall receive no form of payment other than the refund of approved expenses. The Officers shall be elected by vote at the Annual General Meeting (AGM). Officers are elected for one year but may be re-elected as many times as the AGM wishes.

  13. The affairs of the APS shall be managed by an Executive Committee which shall consist of all the Officers, plus up to two co-opted members and a representative elected by and from each local group, who shall not also be an Officer. The quorum shall be three. The Executive Committee shall be chaired by the Chairman, whom failing by another Officer chosen by those present, and shall as far as practicable follow the general policies set by the AGM. It shall have the power to co-opt members to fill casual vacancies amongst the Officers.

  14. Nominations for the election of Officers may be submitted in writing; they must reach the Honorary Secretary five weeks before the AGM. Nominations shall require a proposer and seconder and the consent of the nominee, all three of whom shall be members.

  15. Resolutions for presentation to the AGM which if passed would make substantive changes in the APS may be submitted by post; they must reach the Honorary Secretary five weeks before the AGM, and be sent by him to all members three weeks before the AGM. They shall require a proposer and seconder. No such resolution shall be tabled at the AGM itself.

  16. Local Groups

  17. Proposals to form a Local Group shall be accompanied by the signatures of six sponsoring APS members and a draft set of Rules, and submitted to the Executive Committee of the APS for approval. The APS Executive Committee may recommend to the APS AGM that recognition be withdrawn from a Local Group, but if this be done the APS shall not thereby acquire title to any locally-raised funds.

  18. Local Groups may arrange local meetings, maintain a library, circulate a Packet to their members, and generally do anything consistent with the Purpose & Aims of the APS. They may charge a local subscription, but shall neither pay a levy to the APS nor receive a subsidy from it.

  19. Local Groups shall do nothing inconsistent with the Purpose & Aims of the APS, and shall not spend or commit the funds of the APS without the prior approval of the Executive Committee of the APS. They shall provide an annual written report and financial summary to the AGM of the APS. Each local group may appoint one of its members (not already a member of the Executive Committee) as its representative to serve on the Executive Committee in accordance with Rule 11. Any such appointee shall be subject to reelection at its AGM.

  20. Annual & Extraordinary General Meetings

  21. The AGM of the APS shall be held in the October of each year or as may be convened by the Executive Committee. Notice of the date and the outline agenda shall be sent to each member at least two months prior to the AGM, and no further notification sent unless resolutions for substantive changes have been proposed. Accidental failure to give this notice does not invalidate the meeting. If appropriate, the Executive Committee at its discretion may decide to hold the meeting over the internet using any electronic format.

  22. An Extraordinary General Meeting may be convened by the Executive Committee whenever they think fit, or upon a requisition made in writing by not less than 25 members and lodged with the Honorary President or the Honorary Secretary. Such meeting shall be held within forty days of lodgement of the requisition. Not less than three weeks notice shall be given in writing to all members eligible to attend and such notice shall state clearly the business to be discussed.

  23. Annual and Extraordinary General Meetings shall be chaired by the President, whom failing by an Officer chosen by the meeting, whom failing by a member chosen from those present by the meeting.

  24. The AGM shall take an overview of the activities of the APS, consider resolutions, elect Officers, approve the reports and accounts, agree on the provisional date and venue of the next Fest and AGM, and set general policies.

  25. 21. An Honorary Examiner who shall not be the Honorary Treasurer, the Honorary Packet Secretary or the Honorary Auctioneer, and need not be a member of the APS, shall be elected at each AGM.

  26. Each Officer shall present a report at each AGM. In addition, the Honorary Treasurer, the Honorary Packet Secretary, and the Honorary Auctioneer shall present at each AGM a financial statement, duly certified by the Honorary Examiner. A summary shall be published to members.

  27. At any Annual or Extraordinary General Meeting, only those Honorary Life Members and Ordinary Members physically present shall be entitled to vote on matters submitted to the meeting; however at EGMs called under Rule 28 postal votes shall also be allowed. Voting shall be by a show of hands. Except as otherwise provided in these Rules, any matter submitted to a General Meeting shall be decided by a simple majority. In the event of an equality of votes, the chairman of the meeting shall have a second casting vote.

  28. Rule Changes

  29. The Rules of the APS shall only be altered at an AGM or at an Extraordinary General Meeting called for that purpose. In either case full details of the proposed changes shall be sent to members at least three weeks in advance, and at least three quarters of the votes cast must be in favour of any alteration.

  30. Executive Committee

  31. The Executive Committee shall have power to issue such regulations as it deems necessary, provided that they do not conflict with any of these Rules. In particular, it shall issue (and as necessary review and amend) regulations for the exchange packet, for the library, and for the auction.

  32. The Executive Committee may vote to suspend the membership of any member until the next AGM, which shall consider the matter, receive such representations as the member may make in person or by letter, and either remove the suspension or expel the member. This requirement shall apply equally to an Executive Committee member as to any other member. In addition a member of the Executive Committee shall respond promptly to any reasonable request for information concerning their role on the Committee, using their best endeavours to provide such information within 14 days.

  33. The Executive Committee shall have power to act in all matters not covered by the foregoing Rules and shall have the custody and control of all property which may be acquired in connection with, and all gifts and bequests to, the APS.

  34. Dissolution

  35. The APS may only be wound up by the passing of a resolution to that effect at an Extraordinary General Meeting called for that purpose. Postal votes shall be allowed on such a resolution; no member may vote both by post and in person. At least three quarters of the votes cast must be in favour of such a resolution. The Executive Committee shall then meet all outstanding liabilities of the APS from the assets, and dispose of any remainder as has been decided at the Extraordinary General Meeting. If at any time the net cash assets of the APS are less than ten pounds per paid-up member then the Executive Committee shall call an EGM to propose dissolution.

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©APS. Last updated 26 November 2021