CHESS JOURNALISTS OF AMERICA

Bylaws Committee Report

August 1, 2007

 

"... please add the following By-Laws committee report to the web site so that people can look at it and comment." -- Ira Lee Riddle

[Note: The email address for the Chairman of the Bylaws Committee can be found on the Directory page.]

Proposed By-Laws Changes: (Subject to much change.)

ETHICS COMMITTEE:

  1. The Chair:
    1. of the Ethics Committee must be a current member in good standing of the CJA, and maintain CJA mem- bership throughout the term of office.
    2. The Chair is nominated by and confirmed by the membership present at a Regular Business Meeting.
    3. Should a Chair need be named between meetings due to resignation or removal of the previous Chair, the President will nominate a new Chair to be approved by at least a 3/4 vote of the remaining members of the Executive Committee. This appointment is for the remaining time until the next Regular Business Meeting.
  2. Members of the Committee
    1. The Chair of this Committee shall recruit and appoint a panel of at least seven current CJA members to serve on this Committee. Members must maintain their CJA membership throughout any Committee service.
    2. Should a complaint be forwarded to the Committee through its Chair, a sub-panel of three Committee members shall be named to judge the validity of the complaint. The complainant and the one being complained about will be allowed to know the names of those selected to hear the complaint, and may reject any such names if bias in either direction can be established, or one name with no necessary reason being given. Should this result in less than three members being available, then the parties must agree on other current CJA members who may serve as the group judging the complaint. It they cannot agree, then the Chair shall appoint such necessary members.
    3. The names of the Committee members shall be posted on the CJA web-site.
  3. Submitting a complaint
    1. Any member of the Chess community may file a complaint with this Committee against a member of the CJA. Non-CJA members shall also include a fee of $25 with the complaint. Should the complaint be found valid, $15 of this fee shall be refunded. CJA members may file complaints along with a $10 fee, refundable if the complaint is found to be valid.
    2. Complaints against non-CJA members shall be rejected and the fee not refunded.
  4. Scope of Committee’s Responsibilities and actions
    1. Complaints may be submitted under the following categories: violations of the CJA Code of Ethics, violations of Federal, State, or local ordinances, actions demeaning of chess, personal attacks that are published in a widespread manner. (Private e-mails or those intended for a limited group, such as the Executive Board of the CJA, are not subject to the Ethics Committee’s responsibility.)
    2. Procedure is as follows:
      1. Complaint is submitted to chair.
      2. Chair nominates a slate of members to hear the complaint.
      3. Both parties to the complaint enter objections; this process is repeated until a committee satisfactory to both sides is agreed upon.
      4. The complainant submits documents to support the claim, with duplicate copies to journalist being complained about. The CJA presedent shall also be sent copies of all materials being submitted.
      5. The journalist being complained about will have a period of 30 days from receipt of complaint (either by certified mail or e-mail) to respond to items of the complaint.
      6. Each side will be allowed a period of 10 days to submit any further evidence on their side.
      7. The Ethics Committee will deliberate and render its decision within 30 days. (An extension may be requested and will be granted if so requested for an additional 30 days at most.)
      8. The decision will be sent to both parties and the CJA President. Either party may request an appeal to the general CJA membership at its next Business Meeting.
    3. Penalties, etc.
      1. The Committee may decide that the complaint is not of sufficient merit to proceed further.
      2. The Committee may impose loss of CJA membership for a period up to three years.
      3. The Committee may recommend to the General Membership that the person complained about be expelled from the CJA permanently.
      4. The Committee may recommend a letter of reprimand be issued, to either of the parties involved.
      5. Any decisions rendered shall be made public through the CJA web-site and by publication in any and all of the CJA Official publications. This report shall not identify either party to the complaint, to preserve rights of appeal, etc.
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