U.S.S. TORTUGA CONSTITUTION AND BY-LAWS
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U.S.S. TORTUGA LSD 26/46

ASSOCIATION BY-LAWS

&

CONSTITUTION

ARTICLE I Name: U.S.S. TORTUGA LSD-26


By-laws have been updated, please read them for some things have changed

Adopted:    September 1993, San Antonio TX

Amended:  September 20, 2002, Charleston, S.C;

Amended:  September 16, 2006, Willowbrook, IL.

Amended:  October 26, 2009, Memphis, Tenn.;

Revised:     September 10, 2011, Evansville, Indiana

 

ARTICLE I – NAME

 

The name of this organization shall be The U.S.S. Tortuga LSD 26/46 Association.

 

 

ARTICLE II – PURPOSE

 

The purpose of the Association shall be to promote the fellowship of our shipmates;  to remember all who have served as ship’s company on the U.S.S. Tortuga (LSD) 26, and to those who have served or are serving as ship’s company on the U.S.S. Tortuga (LSD 46), “The Turtles”, who have developed stout and brave hearts; to remember the oceans and the seas we and our shipmates have sailed and fought on, and to remember the many ports visited both foreign and domestic, always returning home victorious; to never forget those who have given their lives in defending our country; to further the understanding by The United States of the vital role played in defense of liberty by the LSD’s,  both past and present, of our amphibious Navy.

 

 

ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP, DUES, FISCAL YEAR

 

Regular membership in the Association shall consist of those who served as ship’s company on board the U.S.S Tortuga LSD 26, and on board the U.S.S Tortuga LSD 46, their spouses, their widows, and their widowers.  Parents, siblings, and offspring of deceased shipmates are eligible for Honorary Membership.  There shall be two levels of membership.

 

Section 1 -Regular Membership:

 

 

Those who served on board either of the Tortuga’s for any length of time, in any capacity, their spouses, their widows, and their widowers, are eligible for Regular membership in the Association. They shall be designated as members in good standing with full voting rights, provided required annual dues are paid.

 

 

 

Section 2 - Honorary Membership:

 

 

Parents, siblings, and offspring of deceased shipmates are eligible for Honorary Membership. They do not pay dues, and shall have no voting rights. They will receive the newsletter, they may attend reunions and business meetings, and they may purchase ship’s store items. 

 

Section 3 – Dues

 

Regular membership in the Association shall require an initiation fee.  Annual dues are required thereafter, except for Life members, and spouses of deceased life members who become life members immediately with full voting rights; no further dues owed. Dues shall be paid to the Treasurer and are due January 1 of each calendar year.  Any member whose dues are not paid by June 30 shall be classified as delinquent, and they are no longer a member in good standing; voting rights will be suspended.   Members in good standing maintain voting rights as long as dues are current.

 

The amount of the initiation fee, and the amount of the annual dues and life memberships, shall be determined by the Executive Board.  The categories of payments are as follows, and the current amounts for fees and dues shall be listed in the Newsletter.

 

 

a.       Regular Membership:

 

Initiation Fee                         

                        Annual Dues                            

 

b.      Life Membership:  One payment only by age category:

 

Age 80 and over, no dues, and with full voting rights.

            Age 70 – 79                           

            Age 60 – 69                           

                       

            No life memberships under the age of 60 years.

 

c.        Spouses of deceased life members immediately become life members with full   

 voting rights.  No further dues owed.

 

d.      Spouses of deceased members under age 60 who elect to become members, and spouses of active members under age 60 who elect to become members, do not pay the initiation fee, but annual dues are required.

 

 

 

 

Section 4 – Fiscal Year

 

 

The Association’s fiscal year shall be January 1 through December 31.

 

 

ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS, TRUSTEES

 

The elected Officers and Trustees of this Association shall be:

 

            President

            Vice President

            Secretary

            Treasurer

            Three Trustees

 

Section 1

 

Officers shall hold office for a term of two (2) years, limited to two (2) consecutive terms, or four (4) years.  One year must pass before the member may again serve in that position.

 

The Treasurer is exempted from this term limit, and may serve for indefinite successive terms.

 

Terms of office shall begin on January 1.

 

 

Section 2

 

The three (3) Trustees shall hold office for a term of three (3) years, with one new Trustee being elected each year.  One year must pass after a term as Trustee before the member may serve again as a Trustee.

 

Section 3

 

Officers and Trustees shall be elected at the annual business meeting by a majority vote of members in good standing present during a regular business meeting.

 

 

 

Section 4

 

The Officers shall fill a vacancy in any elected office for the unexpired term.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE V – EXECUTIVE BOARD

 

 

The Executive Board shall consist of the elected officers and trustees, appointees, and the immediate past president.

 

The Board shall have general supervision of the affairs of the Association, and shall have the power to transact the business of the Association between meetings; to make recommendations as to policy; and to advise the President. None of its acts shall conflict with the action taken by the Association.

 

Meetings of the Executive Board shall be held prior to the annual business meeting, at the call of the President

 

 

ARTICLE VI – DUTIES OF OFFICERS, TRUSTEES

 

Section 1 -President:

 

The President shall be the Chief Executive Officer of the Association, and shall preside over the Association at all meetings. The President shall determine the agenda for the annual business meeting, and shall maintain a file of all sets of the Association’s Bylaws.

 

The President shall mediate, and if necessary, arbitrate any problems that may arise within the Association.  The President shall initiate and maintain an ongoing correspondence with the Command structure of the U.S.S Tortuga LSD 46 to include at least the Command Master Chief and/or C.O/X.O as agreed to by those individuals.  The purpose is to exchange information that may be of interest to the U.S.S. Tortuga LSD 26 Association, and to the U.S.S. Tortuga LSD 46.

 

In the event of a death of an Association member, the President shall contact the family and express the Association’s sorrow. 

 

The President shall keep the Vice President informed of all actions and responsibilities concerning the duties of the Presidency. The Trustees shall assist the President as determined by the President.

 

The President shall serve as an ex officio member of all Appointee positions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Section 2 - Vice President:

 

The Vice President is to assume the duties of the President at any time the President is unable to perform the required duties.  The Vice President shall keep informed of all Presidential actions and responsibilities in order to provide a smooth transition for the Vice President to assume the Office of the President.  The Vice President shall assist the President, as needed, to accomplish the Presidential duties.

 

 

Section 3 -Secretary:

 

The Secretary shall record the minutes of the Association’s Executive Board meetings, and the Association’s annual business meetings, and shall maintain a separate file of said minutes for each meeting.

 

 Prior to each annual business meeting, the Secretary shall distribute a copy of the minutes of the Association’s previous annual business meeting to all members in good standing in attendance. 

 

A file shall also be maintained of all Association correspondence, and the President shall be notified of any correspondence requiring action.  The Secretary shall maintain a file of all sets of the Association’s bylaws

 

Section 4 - Treasurer:

 

 

The Treasurer shall maintain records of all finances of the Association, and shall receive and deposit all funds in a bank account maintained for that purpose.  The Treasurer shall reimburse members for official expenses incurred by them in the performance of their duties, and shall sign and issue membership cards to all who are current in their dues.  The Treasurer shall work closely with the Membership Chairman/Keeper of the Roster.

 

The Treasurer shall also maintain a current list of all members and their dues status.  Each quarter, copies of this list shall be provided to all Officers, the Newsletter Editor, and the Keeper of the Roster.

 

A financial statement shall be provided to all Officers and Trustees each quarter which includes, but not limited to, funds brought forward, income, expenditures, and fund balance.  An annual financial report shall be given at the annual business meeting, and the books shall be on hand for review. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Section 5 - Trustees

 

 

The three (3) Trustees shall maintain a close relationship with the President, and shall assist the President in monitoring the activities and the events of the Association as requested by the President.  They shall audit the finances of the Association prior to the turnover of records to the successor Treasurer, or upon request by interested members.  A copy of each audit report shall be given to the President and to the Treasurer to be kept in their respective files.

 

The Trustees shall assist the Bylaws Chairman, as needed, when the bylaws are to be

amended.

 

 

ARTICLE VII – APPOINTEES

 

Section 1   

 

These positions are appointed by the President.   Appointees shall serve for a term of three (3) years, limited to two (2) consecutive terms or six (6) years.  One year must pass after a term in the appointed position before the member may again serve in that appointed position.

 

Two exceptions:  The Reunion Coordinator shall serve for one (1) year; the Webmaster may serve for indefinite successive terms. 

 

The Appointees are:

 

Bylaws Chairman

Chaplain

Lone Sailor Award Chairman

            Master at Arms

            Membership Chairman/Keeper of the Roster

            Newsletter Editor

            Reunion Coordinator (serves for 1 year)

            Ship Storekeeper/Historian

            Webmaster (may serve for indefinite consecutive terms)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE VIII – DUTIES OF APPOINTEES

 

 

Section 1 – Bylaws Chairman 

 

The Bylaws Chairman shall amend the bylaws as determined by a majority vote of the members in good standing present at a business meeting.  The Bylaws Chairman shall maintain a file containing a copy of each set of approved bylaws, together with a copy of the minutes of the meeting when proposed amendments to the current bylaws have been  approved by members in good standing in attendance.  The Bylaws Committee includes the Trustees who shall assist the Bylaws Chairman, as needed, in preparing the amendment.

 

When proposed amendments to the bylaws have been approved by a majority vote of members in good standing present during a regular business meeting, the Bylaws Chairman shall prepare the amendment, with the assistance of the Trustees, to be presented for a vote at the subsequent annual meeting.

 

When the amendment has been prepared, an advance copy of the amendment, together with a copy of the section of the bylaws to be amended, shall be sent to all members in good standing at least 30 days prior to the annual meeting when the vote is to take place.   The amendment must be approved by a majority vote of members in good standing present during the business meeting.

 

 Upon approval of the amendment, the Bylaws Chairman shall incorporate the approved amendment into the body of the current Bylaws for a newly amended set of bylaws.  A copy of this newly amended set of bylaws shall be sent to the Webmaster for posting on the website, and a copy shall be sent to all members in good standing.

 

 

Section 2 – Chaplain

 

 

The Chaplain position usually requires some background in the field of Chaplainry or as a pastor of a church; however, a layperson may do so with the approval of the President.  Duties will include:  conducting the Remembrance Ceremony for deceased shipmates during the reunions; maintaining the deceased shipmate’s record file; maintaining communication with the Webmaster for the maintenance of the Chaplain’s portion of the website; sending cards or notes of sympathy to the families of deceased shipmates; offering prayers at special occasions upon request; giving spiritual guidance to any member of the Association as needed; offering and providing assistance to spouses of deceased members as needed; and performing other duties as requested by the President.  In addition, the Chaplain shall, upon the request of the President, assist in any mediation proceedings.

 

 

                                                  Section 3 – Lone Sailor Award

 

 

 Members of this committee will consist of recipients of the Lone Sailor Award, and each year they shall select the recipient of this prestigious award to be presented at the annual banquet.

 

If at any time there are fewer than three Lone Sailor Award recipients available to serve on the committee, the President may appoint members who are not recipients of this award, as needed, to serve on the Lone Sailor Award Committee.

 

                       

                                                  Section 4 – Master at Arms.

 

 

The Master at Arms shall ensure that all members sign in at all meetings; shall distribute documents to members as needed; maintain order at the direction of the President; assist in the counting  when a vote is taken by show of hands;  bring the American Flag to the business meetings; and  perform such other duties as may be assigned by the President.

 

Section 5 - Membership Chairman/ Keeper of the Roster

 

The Membership Chairman/Keeper of the Roster shall actively seek to locate former crew members through whatever means available.  When a new member is located, an initial contact package of information about the Association, including an offer of membership, will be sent to them.  Upon acceptance of the offer of membership, the newly located shipmate will be sent a “Welcome Aboard” package.

 

The Membership Chairman/Keeper of the Roster  shall assign membership numbers to all new members, and shall notify all Officers and the Treasurer of the new memberships and the membership  numbers.   The Membership Chairman/Keeper of the Roster shall work closely with the Treasurer. Maintains a current roster of members which is sent periodically to members in good standing.

 

Section 6 – Newsletter Editor

 

The Newsletter Editor edits and publishes the Association Newsletter which shall be called “The Turtle News and Views”.  The Newsletter will be published on a quarterly basis:  February, May, August, and November on the 15th of the month, and shall be mailed to members in good standing. 

 

The reunion announcement issue, the May issue, shall be mailed to all members regardless of dues standing.  The deadline date is to be determined by the editor. All members are invited to provide input for the newsletter.  The editor shall make the final decision as to the content of each issue.

 

 

Section 7 – Reunion Coordinator

 

 

The Reunion Coordinator shall work closely with the President, and shall plan the reunion as follows: select the hotel, contact tour companies, and provide preliminary information in the February newsletter as to the attractions/tours available for the membership to choose from.  Reunion feedback from members is reviewed, and the tours receiving the most

interest are selected.  This information shall be published in the May newsletter together with final costs and a signup sheet. 

 

The Treasurer will provide start up funds to be placed in the reunion bank account set up for this purpose.  All reunion monies received from members will be placed in this account and shall be used to pay for all reunion expenses.  If at all possible, the reunion should pay for itself.  The startup funds, or the remaining portion thereof after the reunion, shall be returned to the Treasurer for deposit in the general fund.  It is recommended that at least one past Reunion Coordinator be appointed to serve in an advisory capacity.

 

 

Section 8 – Ship’s Storekeeper/ Historian

 

The Ship’s Storekeeper/Historian shall maintain an inventory of items of a souvenir nature such as caps, shirts, reunion pins, and any other items determined to be worthy of including in the inventory.  These items are available for sale at the reunion and by mail order.  Financial accountability relating to inventory, to sales, and to purchasing of items for inventory, shall be made to the Treasurer.

 

The Ship’s Storekeeper/Historian shall also maintain custody of, and display at reunions,    pictures, papers, books/pamphlets, cruise books,  or any other objects of historical value to the U.S.S Tortuga LSD 26/46 Association. 

 

 

Section 9 – Webmaster

 

The Webmaster shall maintain a website for the U.S.S. Tortuga LSD 26/46 Association.  The site shall contain information about the Association, including, but not limited to, historical, reunions, Officer/Trustee/Appointee information, a visitor’s sign in location (quartermaster’s notebook), inputs from members, and a copy of the current bylaws. 

 

 

The Webmaster shall have the final decision as to the site’s content.  The format of the site shall be at the discretion of the Webmaster.  Maintaining contact and continuing communication with the U.S.S. Tortuga LSD 46 Webmaster is an additional means of exchanging information that may be of benefit to both the  U.S.S. Tortuga LSD 26 Association, and the U.S.S. Tortuga LSD 46.

 

 

 

ARTICLE IX – REUNIONS, MEETINGS

 

Section 1 – Reunions

 

 

Reunions shall be held annually on a date and at a location to be selected and approved by a majority vote of members in good standing present during the regular business meeting.  The date shall normally fall in September, but may be modified to comply with special events.  Locations shall normally rotate as follows, and by using the established boundary lines:  Eastern U.S, Central U.S., and Western U.S.

 

The boundary line between the Eastern and Central locations shall be Interstate Highway I-75; the boundary line between the Central and Western locations shall be Interstate Highway I-25.  Reunions shall be dedicated to U.S.S.  Tortuga Commanding Officers in the order in which they served. 

 

Section 2 – Meetings

 

Executive Board:   Meetings shall be held at the call of the President prior to the annual business meeting.  A quorum shall consist of those Officers, Trustees, Appointees, and the immediate Past President who are in attendance.  Decisions shall be determined by a majority vote of Executive Board members in attendance.

 

Business meetings:  Shall be held during the annual reunion for the purpose of discussing Association business, for voting on items brought before the membership in attendance, and for holding elections.  A quorum shall consist of those members in good standing who are in attendance, and only members in good standing have voting rights.  Honorary members may attend the Business meetings, but have no voting rights.  Decisions shall be determined by a majority vote of members in good standing present during the business meeting.

 

Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern all meetings of the Association.

 

 

ARTICLE X – AMENDMENTS

 

 

Amendments to the bylaws shall be approved at a regular business meeting by a majority vote of members in good standing present at the business meeting, provided advance notice of the proposed vote  has been given by the Bylaws Chairman, in writing, to all members in good standing.  The advance notice must be given at least thirty (30) days prior to the meeting when the vote is to take place.  The Notice shall include a copy of the proposed amendment, together with a copy of the section of the current bylaws to be amended.   

 

U.S.S. TORTUGA LSD 26/46 ASSOCIATION BYLAWS

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