Queenstown Club Constitution

 Rules of the                                                                                                                 


1.       Name


The name of the club is “Queenstown Contract Bridge Club Incorporated” (the Club” or “QCBC”)


2.       Registration


The Club is registered under the Incorporated Societies Act 1908.


3.        Objectives


The objectives of the Club are those charitable objectives, aims, goals, and purposes which are recognised by the Courts of New Zealand, and including

(a)      Teaching and providing amenities, facilities and equipment for playing the game of contract bridge;

(b)     Promoting contract bridge tournaments, competitions and matches and providing for the control, administration and management of bridge sessions and events, and

(c)      The provision and maintenance of premises considered necessary desirable or convenient for the advancement of such objectives.


4.        Affiliation


The Club is affiliated as a member of New Zealand Bridge Incorporated (“NZ Bridge”), being the governing organisation responsible for the management, control, administration and regulation of Contract Bridge in New Zealand.


The Club shall seek to comply with any requirements imposed from time to time for membership of that organisation so as to continuously maintain such affiliation and the benefits of such membership. All members of the Club are, by virtue of that affiliation, also bound by the provisions of the Rules of NZ Bridge to the extent the same apply to members of affiliated Clubs participating in the game of Contract Bridge.

5.        Notices and Communication


These rules, the by-laws and any notices required to be given to members shall be displayed on the noticeboard at the Club rooms and may be available on the NZBridge or QCBC website. Copies will be provided on written application to the Secretary.


The  club Email address use is limited to bridge communiques only and is not to be used for commercial  purposes or members gain. Though members lists may be in the public domain use of these for commercial purposes may result in suspension of players rights as determined by the committee. 


6.        Membership

           (a) The members of the club shall be:


(1)    Life members


(2)    Ordinary members


(3)    Student members


(4)    Friday Only members


(5)    Associate Members



(b)     Life members shall be persons the Club desires to honour, and shall be elected in accordance with rule 7. A life member is not liable to pay any Club subscription, and is entitled to all privileges of the Club.

(c)      Ordinary , Student, Associate, and Friday Only members shall be elected to membership under rule 8.

(d)     Student members shall have the playing rights of ordinary members while under the age of 23 years and not in full-time employment. They shall have no right to vote or hold office unless they become ordinary members and pay full fees.

(e)     Friday only members are entitled to participate in Friday afternoon sessions only. They shall have no right to vote or hold office unless they become ordinary members and pay full fees.


           (f)     Associate members being fully paid members of another NZ Bridge affiliated club shall be entitled to play in 12                sessions per year and enter in club competitions. They shall have no right to vote or hold office unless they                                      become ordinary members and pay full fees.


7.        Election of life members


Recommendations for election to life membership can be made only by the Committee and shall require the approval of three-quarters of the votes cast in a secret ballot at a general meeting, due notice of the recommendation having been given in accordance with rules 24(b) or 25(b).


8.        Election of Ordinary, Student, Associate or Friday only members


(a)      Every candidate for ordinary, student, Associate, or Friday Only membership shall sign the membership application form prescribed by the Committee. The application or a copy thereof shall be posted on the notice board at the Club rooms for at least seven days.

(b)     At its first meeting after the conditions in rule 8(a) are satisfied, the Committee shall consider the election of the candidate, and if approved the candidate shall become a member of the Club.

(c)      Every new member shall be notified by the Secretary, and shall then be bound by the rules and by-laws of the Club.


9.        Resignation of members


Notice of resignation from membership shall be given to the Secretary in writing. A member who has not resigned before the end of the financial year is liable for the subscription for the ensuing year


10.     Discipline and/or suspension of members


(a)      The Committee has the power to censure, suspend from membership for a period, or expel any

 member, but the member shall be given full opportunity to offer an explanation and otherwise treated in a manner consistent with the requirements of natural justice. Individual members have no power to initiate an action without committee approval.


A member censured, suspended, or expelled must be given Notice in writing. Such Notice must be dated, signed by the President, and the reason for the action taken clearly stated. On receiving such Notice, the Member concerned may require an audience at the Committee to state and explain their case.

(b)     Any member censured, suspended or expelled under rule 10(a) has the right to appeal, by delivering a notice in writing to the Secretary to that effect within one month from the date of censure suspension or expulsion, to a special general meeting (SGM) to be convened within 30 days of the date of delivery of such notice. A majority of two-thirds of those present at that SGM may reverse or amend the Committee’s decision.

(c)      Any member whose subscription remains unpaid for three months after the due date shall be deemed to be suspended from membership without formal notice and shall not be entitled to the privileges of the Club until the subscription has been paid. Should a subscription remain unpaid at the end of the Club’s financial year the person concerned shall cease to be a member of the Club but shall still be liable to pay the outstanding subscription.

(d)     Notwithstanding the provisions of sub-clauses (a) and (b) the Committee also has the power to refer any matter, allegation, or complaint of conduct, discipline or dispute that it considers sufficiently significant, concerning or important to the Board of Management of NZ Bridge for enquiry, investigation and/or determination by the Board’s appropriate Standing Committee, and in the event any such referral is accepted by the Board for that purpose the Committee shall abide any consequent verdict, decision or determination as the case may be.


11.     Annual subscriptions


(a)      Annual subscriptions for all Membership categories shall be determined by the Committee in office in the preceding financial year.

(b)     Subscriptions are due in advance on the 1st day of November.

(c)   The annual subscription is payable on or within 30 days of election to membership of the Club. If not paid within 3 months of due date the membership will be suspended in accordance with 10 (c) . A member elected after the first three months of the financial year shall pay a first subscription calculated on a pro rata basis.


12.     Officers


(a)         The officers of the Club shall be the President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and Secretary who shall be members of the Committee ex officio.


(b)         All general meetings of the Club and all Committee meetings shall be chaired by the President or in the President’s absence by the Vice-President. In the absence of both of them the meeting shall elect one of their number to fill the chair.


13.     Election of officers and Committee


(a)      Only financial members of the Club are eligible for election as an officer and/or Committee member.

(b)     The annual general meeting shall elect nine members to comprise the Committee: this includes the Officers designated in (12a) above

(c)      Written nominations for election on the approved form, signed by two financial members and including the written consent of the nominee, shall be lodged with the Secretary before the annual general meeting. Currently serving committee members may offer themselves for re-election in this manner.

(d)     In the absence of sufficient nominations being received, further nominations may be made from the floor.

(e)     If a vacancy on the Committee occurs between annual general meetings the Vice-President shall fill a vacancy in the position of President, and any other vacancy may be filled by appointment by the Committee if considered necessary. The Committee may continue to act despite any vacancy.


14.     Management by the Committee


(a)      From the end of each annual general meeting until the beginning of the next, the Club shall be administered, managed and controlled by the Committee, which shall be accountable to the members for the implementation of the policies of the Club as approved by any general, or special general,  meeting and having regard to the best interests of the Club.

(b)     The Committee may engage employees on such terms and with such powers as it thinks desirable.

(c)      Other than matters required by law, or by these rules to be decided by the Club in general meeting, the Committee shall do all things in the exercise of the Club’s powers and management.

(d)     The Committee shall meet at such times and places as it may determine and otherwise where and as convened by the President.

(e)     The Committee may co-opt any member to the Committee for a specific purpose for a limited period.

(f)       The quorum for Committee meetings is five.


(g)      Only Committee members elected under rule 13(b) or appointed under rule 13(e)  who are present in person shall be counted in the quorum and be entitled to vote.

(h)     The Committee may appoint sub-committees consisting of such members as it thinks fit and with or without power to co-opt. The President shall ex officio be a member of all sub-committees.

(i)       The Committee may act by resolution approved by more than half the members present. In the case of an equality of votes, the chairperson shall have a deliberative and casting vote.

(j)       The Committee shall make by-laws consistent with these rules for any matter affecting members and the management of the Club.

(k)      These rules, any by-laws, the resolutions of general meetings, the decisions of the Committee on the interpretation of these rules, and all actions taken by the Committee in accordance with these rules, and on matters not provided for in these rules, shall be final and binding on all members.

(l)       Each officer or Committee member shall immediately on resigning or ceasing to hold office deliver to the Secretary (or in his/her absence the President) all books, papers and other property of the Club.


15.     Status and playing rights of members


(a)    Player Grades and Handicaps


The Committee may appoint a sub-committee and/or any third party to make recommendations to the committee in regard to the allocation or computation of members’ playing grades (e.g. Silver; Bronze; etc) and handicaps.


The number of such grades, the number of members allotted to each grade, and the individual members’s handicaps calculated,  will be determined by the Committee, fully taking into account recommendations made.


           (b) Competition management


        Any member during play may seek the Director’s decision on a question of etiquette, or incorrect or      

        misleading play whether this be deliberate or by genuine error. It is the responsibility of the Director to

        adjudicate every request quickly and fairly.


                Should a member disagree with a Director’s decision he/she   

-          Must accept the Director’s decision at the table without discussion or debate and continue play

-          May seek clarification of the decision from the Director at close of competition play

-          May lodge an appeal within 20 minutes of the end of the sessions play to be heard and adjudicated on by an Appeal subcommittee appointed by the Committee. The Appeal committee’s decision is final.


16.     Records


(a)         The Secretary shall record the minutes of all general meetings and Committee meetings, and all minutes when confirmed by members present, and signed by the chairperson of that meeting, shall prima facie be evidence that that meeting was duly called and that the minutes are a true and correct record of what occurred at the meeting. Committee members’ interim confirmations may be made by Email, and the Chairperson’s signature recorded at the next committee meeting.


All meeting minutes, after review for authenticity by members, are to be published on the QCBC website as soon as possible. Both General meeting and Committee meeting minutes may, at the discretion of the Committee, be published on the QCBC website on a “subject to confirmation” basis for reasons of timeliness and transparency to members.

(b)     The Treasurer, or another member or third party chosen by the committee, shall hold the Club’s records, documents, and books for safe keeping.


17a    Treasurer


The functions of the Treasurer shall include:


(a)      Keeping such books of account as may be necessary to provide a true record of the Club’s financial position;

(b)         Preparing budgets and reporting on the Club’s financial position to each Committee meeting;

(c)          Presenting an annual financial statement

(d)         Supervising all the financial affairs of the club


17b Common Seal


The Committee shall provide a common seal for the Society and may from time to time replace it with a new one. The Secretary shall have custody of the common seal, which shall only be used by the authority of the Committee.  Every document to which the common seal is affixed shall be signed by the President and countersigned by the Secretary or a member of the Committee.



18 Financial year

The financial year of the club begins on the 1st day of October in each year, and ends on the 30th day of September.

19 Major transactions


(a) Major transactions shall be referred to members. Major transactions include any expenditure that is over and above the expenditure required to enable the teaching, playing and recording of the results of the game of bridge


(b) Examples of major transactions are: 


The purchase, taking on a lease or otherwise acquiring real and personal property of every description. The  sale, exchange, lease, let, hire out, sub-let, mortgage or otherwise disposal of or dealing with the same or any part thereof, the building on any land and repair, alter, improve, or otherwise deal with any building.


20   Finance and accounts

(a)      The Committee shall set playing fees from time to time and may impose additional fees for visitors to the Club and other charges as it may decide.

(b)     1. Moneys belonging to the Club shall be deposited in bank accounts under such conditions as the                Committee decides.

           2. The Committee shall also give such directions as it may consider desirable for the payment of accounts. These directions may incorporate such rules as:

           Paper based authorities for payments shall be signed by two persons: the Treasurer conjointly with the President, the Secretary, or another appointed by the Committee for that purpose.

           Online Payments: the committee may at its discretion authorise the Treasurer alone to initiate individual on line payments up to a maximum of $1,000.00.  Such transactions must be only to regular suppliers/contacts. Other transactions must have been pre-approved at a meeting of the committee.


           All payments must be listed in the Treasurer’s reports for retrospective approval/confirmation by the committee. Any financial transaction involving a committee member must be fully disclosed and the member must not vote on the issue.

(c)      The Committee shall ensure that proper books of account are kept.

(d)     At the annual general meeting the Committee shall submit financial statements of the Club as at 30th September including an account of the income and expenditure for the period.


21   Payments to members

                Except as provided by this clause, no member  shall  derive any personal pecuniary benefit from membership of the    club.

Should a member or an associated party of the member provide committee approved Goods or services any payment must be reasonable and relative to that paid in any arms-length transaction (being open market value).

22.     Financial statements review and audit


The annual financial statements are to be reviewed by an appropriate independent person appointed by the committee.


The annual financial statements must be audited when 10% of an AGM or SGM of members request this action.


23.     Annual general meeting


(a)      The annual general meeting shall be held in October each year on a date fixed by the Committee.

(b)     At least ten days’ notice of this meeting shall be given to members.


24.     Special general meeting


(a)      The Committee shall call a special general meeting:


(i)       whenever it considers it in the interests of the Club to do so, or

(ii)      upon receipt of a requisition to do so signed by more than 10 members and stating the business of the meeting.

(b)     Notice of any business to be considered at any special general meeting must be given at least ten days before the meeting and in the case of a meeting called under rule 24(a)(ii), the meeting must be held within 30 days of the receipt of the requisition.

(c)      At any special general meeting no business shall be transacted other than that stated in the notice convening the meeting.

(d)    A SGM may also be called for under clause 10(b)


25.     Voting


(a)      At all general meetings voting shall be on a show of hands or a ballot shall be conducted in such manner as the chairperson shall determine. In the event of any vote being tied the tie shall be resolved by another ballot.


(b)     Two members (who are not nominees) appointed by the meeting shall act as scrutineers for the counting of                                votes and destruction of any voting papers.


26.     Quorum

               At all general meetings 15 members or one-half of the Club’s current members, whichever is the lesser, shall form a                  quorum. If there is not a quorum present 15 minutes after the time set down for the meeting, the meeting shall be               adjourned and immediately reconvened.

At the reconvened meeting if there is no quorum within 15 minutes the members present shall either adjourn the meeting or the meeting can then transact its business if three-quarters of those present agree.


27.     Alteration to rules


No alteration, addition or deletion shall be made to these rules except at a special general meeting called for that purpose. Particulars of any proposed changes must be given in the notice convening the meeting. The votes of three-fifths of those members present on that occasion are required to effect any change.


No addition to or alteration of the aims (clause 3), personal benefit clause (clause 22), or the winding up clause (clause 30) shall be made which affect the tax exempt/non profit status of the QCBC. The provisions and effect of this clause shall not be removed from this document and shall be included and implied in any document replacing this document.


28.     Dissolution


In accordance with the Incorporated Societies Act 1908, or any law in substitution for that act, members present at a general meeting of the Club may resolve that the Club be dissolved as from a date specified in that resolution. Any such resolution must be confirmed at a subsequent special general meeting called for that purpose, and held not earlier than 30 days after the passing of the resolution.


Members shall direct, after all debts of the Club have been paid, the method of disposition of the remaining funds and property of the Club to New Zealand Bridge Incorporated or to any society or charitable trust in New Zealand having as one of its principal objects the fostering and promotion of, and participation in, the game of contract bridge in New Zealand.


Signed  __________________   __/__/__             C Wood                 President


Signed __________________   __/__/__               R Caldwell           Vice President


Signed __________________   __/__/__              S Wilson               Treasurer