East Falls Forward – Bylaws

East Falls Forward


Drafted June 10, 2015

Adopted, as amended, June 18, 2015

Article 1.   
Section 1.         This Organization, to be known as EAST FALLS FORWARD, shall be organized to protect and promote the best interests of the residents within its jurisdiction; to represent the community in those matters pertaining to zoning and land use, planning and development; and to assure that East Falls will continue to be a desirable area in which to live.  The mission shall be to improve East Falls to serve current residents and to attract new residents and new businesses, as set forth more fully in the Organization’s mission statement.
Section 2.       The area to be served by East Falls Forward will be an area bounded by:  The Schuylkill River, Lincoln Drive, Wissahickon Avenue, and a line drawn from the railroad tracks at Wissahickon to Ridge Avenue and Scotts Lane (this includes all properties on Scotts Lane).  This area shall be referred to below as “boundary” or “boundaries.”
Section 3.        The Executive Board of East Falls Forward shall be composed of a Chair, Vice-Chair, and Secretary.
Section 4.       Standing Committees appointed by the Chair shall be as follows:

  • Zoning and Land Use Committee

Article 2.
Duties of the Chair
Section 1.        The Chair shall be Chief Executive Officer of East Falls Forward charged with the duty of supervising all of its functions, subject to the orders of the Membership.
Section 2.        The Chair shall preside at all meetings of East Falls Forward and the Membership and maintain order therein.
Section 3.        The Chair shall put all questions, when duly seconded, to a vote and announce their disposal.
Section 4.        The Chair shall be a member ex-officio of all Committees.
Article 3.
Duties of the Vice-Chair
Section 1.        It shall be the duty of the Vice-Chair to perform all the duties of the Chair in his or her absence.
Section 2.        The Vice-Chair shall chair the Zoning and Land Use Committee. The Zoning and Land Use Committee shall be comprised of at least two Members, in addition to the Chair. Said members shall be selected by the Chair.
Section 3.        It shall be the duty of the Vice-Chair to determine the vote on special amendments and issues that require a majority vote.
Article 4.
Duties of the Secretary
Section 1.        It shall be the duty of the Secretary to keep the minutes of the meetings of East Falls Forward and the Membership, be the custodian of the records, and perform such other duties may be assigned to him/her by the Membership or the Chair.
Section 2.        It shall be the responsibility of the Secretary to run or appoint (with majority Executive Board consent) an impartial individual to run scheduled elections.
Section 3.        It shall be the duty of the Secretary to notify the Membership of regular and special meetings.
Section 4.       The Secretary shall report and/or read all communications pertaining to the business of East Falls Forward at the meetings.
Section 5.  It shall be the duty of the Secretary to maintain a website or page that informs the public and Membership of the regular meeting schedule, minutes of past meetings, and upcoming meetings or special events.  In addition, the Secretary will set up a system that will allow people to vote digitally, as needed.
Article 5
Section 1.        The Membership shall be open to all residents, property owners, and businesses owners in East Falls.  Regarding elections of the Executive Board, only those members who have been enrolled for at least 5 days prior to such election may vote.  All members may vote on other matters at regular meetings and serve on Committees. Only members are eligible to serve on the Executive Board.
Section 2.        Meetings of the Membership shall be at least bi-monthly on the third Thursday of the month or, if such date is not feasible (e.g., holidays, weather-related events, etc.), on a date determined by the Executive Board.  Meetings may be at a physical location or may occur digitally, as needed.
Section 3.        Other meetings, such as those convened for special purposes or zoning issues, shall be called and fixed by the Chair.
Section 4.        The Membership, after discussion, consideration and majority vote, shall be empowered to expel a member or Executive Board member who may be deemed detrimental to the welfare and operation of East Falls Forward.
Section 5.        The Membership shall make decisions by majority vote.  A quorum of five people is necessary to conduct business.  The quorum and meeting can be digital.
Section 6.         Membership meetings shall be public.  They may be announced through any means, including flyers, digital communications (social media or email blast), and/or by regular mail.  No proxy voting is permitted—members should be present for/participate in the discussion and then vote.
 Article 6.
Section 1.        All Standing Committees will be appointed at the first meeting of the Membership following such election meeting.
Section 2.        All Select Committees will be appointed when created.
Section 3.        Duties of Zoning and Land Use Committee.  The Zoning and Land Use Committee shall consider changes in zoning and/or property use and seek the opinion of neighbors who may be affected by these changes. The Committee will consider these opinions (and applicable laws and ordinances of the Commonwealth and the City of Philadelphia) in taking its positions on variances and/or special exceptions sought by property owners and/or residents. The Committee may act for East Falls Forward between Membership meetings and shall report its activities at each regular Membership meeting.  Its decisions can be approved by the Membership or appealed by the applicant holder in a process developed by the Committtee.
Section 4.        Additional Committees shall be appointed as needed.
Article 7.
Dues and Fiscal Year
Section 1.        East Falls Forward is free and open to new members.
Section 2.        The Fiscal Year of the Organization shall begin in January and end in December.
Article 8.
Elections of the Executive Board
Section 1.        The Executive Board shall be elected by the Membership.  The Election of the Executive Board shall occur each calendar year at the second meeting of the Membership within such calendar year. Each term shall be one year; however, the term of the first elected Executive Board shall be less than one year from the date of election (June 18, 2015).
Section 2.        Each Executive Board Member may serve only three consecutive terms in any office.
Section 3.        In the event of a death, resignation, removal of any Executive Board member, their role shall be filled in the interim by appointment of the Chair with approval of a majority vote of the voting Membership.
Article 9.
Section 1.        Members must live in a property, own a property, or own a business in the boundaries set forth above.  We will trust people’s assertion that they are within the boundaries.
Section 2.        In order to vote, such members must be in good standing and have provided information confirming that they live in a property, own a property, or own a business in the boundaries only if there is any question raised regarding their connection to East Falls.
Article 10.   
Subsequent Articles and Amendments
Section 1.        Subsequent Articles and Amendments may be added by approval at a Membership meeting after a notice of at least five days that this type of item will be on the meeting agenda.  Following the initial approval/adoption of the By-Laws, as amended, on June 18, 2015, the Membership shall review the By-Laws within six months of such date (i.e., no later than December 17, 2015) to confirm their consistency with the Organization’s mission, direction, and goals.