Bylaws Amendment Process

Garden Bylaws Records – DRAFTs, references, and previous versions.

Current: Garden Bylaws | Next: Garden Bylaws DRAFT 2021


Updated: 2/5/2021, 3/23/2021

  • The bylaws and guidelines may only be amended/changed at the Annual Meeting.
  • If there are no amendment proposals, or if the proposal is minimal or not significant, then the amendment process (described below) can skip one or more years until a motion to amend the bylaws is made and seconded.
  • The motion must be done at a general garden meeting either 1 or 2 meeting(s), or month(s), before the Annual Meeting date.

Step 1. Review of the bylaws & New amendment proposals.

  1. Use the “Garden Bylaws DRAFT” page to review, comment, and edit the bylaws for the next amendment cycle.
    • The DRAFT webpage will act as an on-going record accumulating document amendment proposals and other suggested changes throughout the year.
    • Separately, the following google doc can be commented on any time: <docs.google link to current bylaws and labeled as, “Vamos-A-Sembrar-bylaws-2021-comments” where ‘2021’ would be replaced by the year of the latest version>
  2. In the DRAFT webpage, at any time during any year:
    1. To make any changes to the bylaws wordings, structure and organization for clarity, readability, and usability, add blocks as comments (text in italics), and highlight the bylaws text by using different colors [red text and/or yellow background].
    2. Make sure to refer to section and sub-section numbers, and if moving the text to a different location with a different number (for instance, for better organization, usability, and/or relevance) then put the old number in parenthesis, example: “Section 3.8 (previously 5.2) … .”
    3. To add any brand new amendment proposals with new numbers (if in the case where new bylaws were just recently adopted, then the DRAFT would become a place to record new items for the next cycle), add blocks as comments (text in italics), and highlight the new amendment proposal text by using different colors [red text and/or yellow background].
    4. Put related items under one section or sub-sections (organization, readability).
    5. Edit for meaning (clarity).
    6. Edit for grammar (readability and clarity).

Step 2. Notification and Deadline.

With a motion to amend and seconded, either 1 or 2 months or 1 or 2 garden meetings before the Annual Meeting:

Notify (by email/text/phone and at the garden meeting) all garden volunteers, potential members, and members of request for any amendment proposals to the garden bylaws. Provide link(s) to the bylaws:

If by the garden meeting before the Annual Meeting, there are no proposals (by anyone and in the DRAFT), then amending the bylaws can be skipped at the Annual Meeting.
If there are amendment proposals, then set a deadline for all submissions.

Set a deadline for all submissions of amendment proposals, wording change suggestions, and corrections to the bylaws: 2/1/2021 Monday, end of day.
Usually, set the deadline to one month before the Annual Meeting, but no less than 10 days before the Annual Meeting.

Step 3. Gather all proposed amendments into the DRAFT.

Gather all proposed amendments (whether from emails, text, written[papers, letters], or by word-of-mouth) and incorporate them into the DRAFT:

  1. Allow about 1 week to 10 days to complete incorporating and setting the DRAFT as below for the garden members and GreenThumb to review and note for themselves how they’ll vote ahead of the Annual Meeting.
    Completion planned for 2/8/2021 Monday.
  2. Check each submitted proposal for consistency with the following two documents:
  3. Combine related proposals and match them to an existing section of the bylaws or create a new section, or a new sub-section of an existing section, as necessary.

Step 4. Members Ready to Vote.

Notification of Completed DRAFT
  • When the DRAFT is completed, notify all garden members (email and/or print copies) with the following instructions:
    (The Primary or Secondary Contact is to notify GreenThumb of the completed Draft.)
    1. All garden members are to go through each item of the DRAFT (bylaws and guidelines) on their own and note for themselves how they will vote (either to adopt or to reject, each item). 
    2. If any comments, submit them immediately.
    3. If any errors, submit them immediately in order for the errors to be corrected.
    4. If there are any parts that are not clear, submit them with the section number and the language that needs to be clearer. 
    5. The bylaws DRAFT may be edited based on feedback from GreenThumb, in which case all garden members will be notified immediately. 

Step 5. At the Annual Meeting.

  • During the meeting, when it’s time to vote on the amendments to the bylaws;
  • with the assumption that every garden member has read and has determined how they’ll vote per each amendment;
  • either the garden chair or garden secretary, or whoever may be the host of the meeting, will proceed as follows:
  1. “We will begin voting to either adopt or reject the proposed amendments to the garden bylaws.”
  2. “We will go by section, and if there are no rejection of the section or its sub-sections, we will proceed to vote for that entire section with its sub-section as one vote.”
  3. “If there are any rejection voiced or hand raised, the section will then be read out loud and a vote count taken.”
  4. “For sections and sub-sections that contain options of either one amendment proposal over another, each option will be read out loud for a vote.”

Read: “Section 1. The Community Garden, the amendment proposals are the additions of sub-sections 1.2.2. a., b., and c. Those voting to adopt the proposals, raise your hands (physical and/or virtual via online conference).
Are there anyone voting to reject any of these proposals?
If “There being no rejections, the amendments 1.2.2. a., b., and c. are adopted.”

Read: “Section 2. …” etc.

If “There being a rejection, the amendment(s) will be read out loud and a vote taken.”

After the last section: “Is there any member who have something to say regarding the amendments or on any of the Edits throughout the bylaws?”
If there aren’t any, “There being no additional considerations, the entirety of the bylaws with its edits and adopted amendments, is now adopted as the new garden bylaws for Vamos A Sembrar.”

Step 6. After voting and adoption of the new bylaws.

  1. (Next day, after the Annual Meeting) Add final comments, what was adopted or rejected, by how many votes, and add the following text below the text title [not the Page title], “Adopted on 3/18/2021” (change the date as appropriate).
  2. Create a PDF with all of the markings, comments, edits, etc. for records with filename, “VamosBylawsDRAFT20210318Final.pdf” (with the date of ratification in the format YYYYMMDD as shown).
    1. Confirm the contents of the PDF file and upload the PDF to the website.
    2. Add the record with link to the PDF in the Garden Bylaws Records page, in the table of previous versions, under “DRAFT Final version” column.
  3. Remove all markings, comments, edits, etc. to create a clean copy of the bylaws.
    1. Create a PDF of the clean copy with filename, “VamosBylaws20210318.pdf” (with the date of ratification).
    2. Confirm the contents of the PDF file and upload the PDF to the website.
    3. Add the record with link to the PDF in the Garden Bylaws Records page, in the table of previous versions, under “PDF clean copy” column.
  4. Before doing step 5, make sure that the previous bylaws has already been copied to a separate Page (should have been done right after the last time the amendments were ratified), with Page name, “Garden Bylaws 10/15/2019” (the date should be of the previous bylaws).
    • If this was not done, then Copy the contents of the previous bylaws from the Garden Bylaws main page (select all blocks from below “Version 10/15/2019” by clicking in the first block to copy and while holding down the command key, hit the down-arrow key until all of the blocks are selected, then Copy [from the hovering menu’s 3-vertical-lines]) and paste it into a New Page with page name, “Garden Bylaws 10/15/2019.” Set the Parent Page: “Garden Bylaws Records” under Page Attributes that’s in the right Settings column.
  5. In the Garden Bylaws DRAFT page, select all of the blocks below the Pending Items list, and Copy [from the hovering menu’s 3-vertical-lines] the new bylaws (groups of blocks).
  6. In the Garden Bylaws main page, delete all of the blocks below “Version 10/15/2019”.
  7. Change the Version date.
  8. Click in the empty block below Version date, and paste the new bylaws.
  9. Create a new Page with title, “Garden Bylaws 2/23/2021” (with the ratified date), and set the Parent Page: “Garden Bylaws Records” under Page Attributes that’s in the right Settings column.
  10. The Primary (or Secondary) Contact person should then submit to GreenThumb the link to the Garden Bylaws webpage with the newly adopted bylaws:
    vamosasembrar.org/garden-bylaws/.

Step 7. Any post-corrections from GreenThumb, or anyone else:

  1. Corrections are to be done immediately in both the Garden Bylaws webpage and in the DRAFT page using highlighted color.
  2. The corrections are to be notified to the garden membership by email and during the next garden meeting.
  3. Anything more than a correction that may be considered a change to the language and therefore its meaning, would be done only in the DRAFT version.

Repeat Step 1.