Colorado Statewide Independent Living Council BYLAWS

SILC Bylaws adopted September 21, 2016 

Colorado Statewide Independent Living Council

BYLAWS

Adopted September, 21 2016

  1. Name

 

This Colorado Statewide Independent Living Council is established under the authority of Section 705 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. This Council (as referred to in these by?laws) shall be known as the Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC), hereafter referred to as the SILC or the Council.

 

Mission

 

The SILC’s mission is to pave the pathways to full participation for people with disabilities served by Colorado’s Centers for Independent Living (CILs).

 

  1. Purpose

 

The Council shall fulfill the requirements of Section 705 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (referred to herein as the Act). In this capacity, the Council shall:

Promote a philosophy of independent living (IL) that includes consumer control, peer support, self-help, self-determination, equal access, and individual, and system advocacy, which maximizes the leadership, empowerment, independence, and productivity of individuals with significant disabilities.

 

  1. Promote and maximize the integration and full inclusion of individuals with significant disabilities into the mainstream of American society;
  1. Jointly develop and submit, in conjunction with the Executive Directors of the Centers for Independent Living (CILs) the State Plan for Independent Living (SPIL) as required in Section 704 of the Act;
  2. Monitor, review, and evaluate the implementation of the State Plan;
  3. Coordinate activities with the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC);
  4. Ensure that all regularly scheduled meetings of the Council are open to the public and sufficient notice is provided;
  5. Submit to the Commissioner such periodic reports as the Commissioner may reasonably request, and keep such records as the Commissioner finds necessary to verify such reports;
  6. Provide guidance and financial assistance for the development, expansion, or improvement of statewide independent living programs and concepts;
  7. Provide guidance to State agencies and to local planning and administrative entities assisted under Title VII of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended,
  8. Advocate for improving working relationships among the various entities providing services to and for persons with significant disabilities; and,
  9. The Council may assume other functions that they determine necessary and appropriate, consistent with their purposes.

 

III. Relationship with the Designated State Entity

  1. The Council shall be independent from the Designated State Entity (DSE) and all other state agencies.
  1. The Council shall share with the Executive Directors of the CILs the responsibility for the developing, submitting, monitoring, reviewing, and evaluating of the implementation of the State Plan.
  2. The Office of Independent Living Program Manager or Coordinator, as liaison to the Council, is responsible for attending, in a non-member, non-voting capacity, all of the Council meetings, to serve in an advisory and resource capacity to the Council by providing technical assistance regarding federal regulations, federal funding availability, program statistics, and other such information as may be determined necessary by the Council in order to fulfill its responsibilities.
  3. The SILC Chairperson, or person designated by the Chairperson, shall serve as a member of the Colorado State Rehabilitation Council, which has the responsibility of advising the Director of DVR concerning vocational rehabilitation and other needs of persons with disabilities.

 

Adoption and Revision of By-Laws

  1. By-laws shall be reviewed at least every other year.
  1. By-laws will be adopted or revised only in accordance with established voting procedures of the Council at a Council meeting. Written drafts of any substantial revisions will be developed and distributed to all members thirty days in advance of voting.
  2. Revisions will become effective immediately unless indicated otherwise by the passed motion.
  3. Copies of the by-laws and revisions will be provided to all Council members and DVR & OIL liaisons within one (1) month following adoption and thereafter to other parties upon request. Copies shall be provided in an accommodation format upon request. The most current by-laws will be posted on the SILC website.

 

Membership

Composition

The Council shall include:

  1. One director of a center for independent living chosen by the Directors of Centers for Independent Living within the State. As a designee of the Center Directors, this member will either complete the term of the former center representative, or may begin a new term when necessary. This representative may only serve on the SILC for as long as he or she remains the designee of the Directors of Centers for Independent Living. When a new designee is elected, the current designee must resign and vacate the position. The term length cannot exceed terms set forth in these by-laws and in Title VII, Section 705 of the Act.
  2. As ex-officio, nonvoting members;
    1. A representative from the designated state entity; and,
    2. Representatives from other state agencies that provide services for individuals with disabilities; and
  3. In a State in which one or more projects are carried out under section 121, at least one representative of the directors of the projects.

Additional Members

  1. The Council may include:
  2. Other representatives from Centers for Independent Living; however, only one staff member, board member or volunteer from any one CIL may serve at one time.
  3. Parents and guardians of individuals with disabilities;
  4. Advocates of and for individuals with disabilities;
  5. Representatives from private business;
  6. Representatives from organizations that provide services for individuals with disabilities; and,
  7. Other appropriate individuals.

 

Qualifications

  1. The Council shall be composed of members:
  1. Who provide statewide representation;
    1. Who represent a broad range of individuals with disabilities;
    2. Who are knowledgeable about Centers for Independent Living and independent living services; and,
    3. A majority of whom are persons who are:
      1. Individuals with disabilities described in Section 6 (20) (B) of the Act; and,
      2. Not employed by any State agency or Center for Independent Living.
  1. The Council shall adhere to a policy of non-discrimination based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, or economic status.

 

Responsibilities

  1. Attend and participate in all regularly scheduled meetings;
  1. Sit on at least one SILC committee;
  2. Bring information and issues of concern to the SILC; and
  3. Disseminate information to the community.
  4. Application Process
    1. An interested individual completes a Pre-Application furnished by the Membership Committee Chair.
  5. The Membership Committee reviews the Pre-Application and forwards the Pre-Application and recommendations to the Full Council to determine if an interview is appropriate
  6. Candidates are interviewed by at least two members including the SILC Chair or designee.
  7. Candidates that meet the needs of the SILC must complete the Boards and Commissions official application and submit it to the SILC along with a resume+.
  8. Candidates are requested to attend at least one full SILC meeting.
  1. SILC members may provide comments about the candidates to the full Council.
  2. The full Council must vote to accept the new member.
  3. Formal paperwork is submitted to DVR for their internal process and then forwarded to the Governor’s Office of Boards and Commissions.
  4. Appointment
    1. The Governor of Colorado, upon recommendation of the SILC Chairperson and the Director of DVR, shall appoint members of the Council.
    2. Appointees and the Council will be notified of appointments in writing.
  5. Orientation
    1. Newly appointed members of the Council shall be provided an orientation to the Council’s goals, objectives, and operations by the Council Chairperson or designee, and an orientation to independent living concepts and services by both the OIL and SILC Coordinators.
    2. Newly appointed members of the Council may request a mentor if so desired.
    3. An Orientation Packet, relative to carrying out a Council member’s roles and responsibilities, will be provided to each new member by the SILC Chairperson or designee.
  6. Length of Terms
  1. A new Council member’s term will be specified upon their initial appointment. Council member’s terms shall provide for expiration on a staggered basis. Council members will be appointed for a term of three years unless he/she is filling an unexpired term or a shorter initial period is necessary in order to maintain staggered expiration dates. Members may be appointed to serve consecutive terms not to exceed two terms or a total of six years.
  1. Early Termination of Appointment
    1. Any member wishing to terminate his or her appointment, prior to the expiration of the term, must submit a written notice of their resignation to the Governor of Colorado and the Council Chairperson.
  1. Members may be removed for failure to attend Council meetings or to carry out his or her Council responsibilities appropriately. If a member fails to attend three (3) Council meetings, during the course of any given fiscal year, without an excused absence, the Chairperson will recommend to the Governor the termination of the individual’s appointment to the Council. The Governor will provide written notice of any early termination to the Council member and the Council Chairperson. The only exception to this rule is for up to a four -month leave of absence for personal or family related medical reasons or due to a job change
  1. Filling Vacancies
    1. Any vacancy occurring in the membership of the Council shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment. The vacancy shall not affect the power of the remaining members to execute the duties of the Council.
    2. A member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration of the term for which the predecessor was appointed, shall be appointed for the remainder of such term.
  2. Compensation
    1. Members shall serve without monetary compensation except for the reimbursement of budgeted expenses incurred as a result of participation on the Council.
    2. Applicants interested in serving on the Council shall be reimbursed for travel expenses incurred as a result of interviews and participation while the Council is pursuing their membership.
    3. In an effort to maintain a diverse and knowledgeable membership, and if included in the SILC’s current budget, the Colorado SILC will offer a stipend to SILC members who lose wages due to their participation in SILC meetings and conferences. The member must provide verification of employment and documentation signed by the employer indicating the amount of wages lost. The maximum stipend will be $50 per day. The SILC member will submit a request for payment. Payment of the stipend will be made directly to the SILC member.

 

Principal Officers

  1. Nomination
    1. Nominations for officers will be made by Council members to the Nominating Committee Chairperson appointed by the Chairperson and presented to the full Council at the regularly scheduled Council meeting immediately prior to October 1st.
  2. Election
    1. Elections will coincide with the Federal Fiscal Year and will be held before October 1.
    2. Officers will be elected by a simple majority vote of members present, provided that a quorum of the voting members is present.
    3. Acceptance of the office by the individuals elected may be acknowledged verbally immediately upon election (if present) or by his or her acceptance of the minutes of the meeting wherein the election occurred.
  3. Chairperson
    1. The Council Chairperson shall be elected by a secret ballot from among the voting Council membership. A person with a disability as described in Section 6 (20) (B) of the act should be given primary consideration for the position of Chairperson.
    2. It shall be the responsibility of the Chairperson to:
      1. Chair Council meetings;
  1. Sign documents and speak on behalf of the Council, with Council ratification as appropriate.
        1. If the Chairperson isn’t present or available to sign a document on behalf of the SILC, the Chairperson onhealthy.net Elect will sign the document. If neither of these individuals are present/available to sign a document, the Secretary will sign the document on behalf of the SILC;
      1. Submit through the Director of DVR to the Governor recommendations for appointment to the Council;
      2. Appoint committee chairpersons and establish standing and ad hoc committees as needed by the Council;
      3. Work with committees as necessary to insure Council effectiveness and to establish Council direction;
      4. Monitor Council members’ participation, take action to elicit full participation and, if needed, request early termination of a member’s appointment to the Council;
      5. Serve as a member of the Colorado State Rehabilitation Council or designate another individual to serve in this capacity
  1. Chairperson-Elect
    1. The Chairperson-Elect will carry out the Chairperson’s responsibilities in his or her absence, and will assist the Chairperson in carrying out those responsibilities, upon the Chairperson’s request.
    2. The Chairperson-Elect will ascend to the position of Chairperson upon the early termination or resignation of the Chairperson’s term of office.
    3. The Chairperson-Elect will serve as the chair of the SPIL Committee.
  1. Secretary
    1. Assure that accurate attendance at and proceedings of Council meetings are documented in minutes;
    2. Distribute or arrange for distribution of minutes;
    3. Serve as or delegate responsibility as custodian of minutes and other Council records/documents.
  2. Treasurer
    1. Monitor the SILC budget, including expenses;
    2. Establish and chair a Finance Committee;
    3. Prepare an informal Financial Report to be given at the SILC Executive Committee meeting each month and at the Council meeting whenever such report is on the agenda.
    4. Keep the SILC informed about the need for adjustments to budget line items. The Treasurer may not make unilateral changes to the budget, and does not have decision-making authority over SILC funds, without the Council’s approval.

 

  1. Length of Terms
    1. Officers shall be elected by the Council to serve a one (1) year term. Terms will coincide with the Federal Fiscal Year (October 1 – September 30) and officers will formally take office on October 1.
    2. No individual may serve in the same office for more than two (2) full consecutive terms.

 

  1. Early Termination of Office
    1. Officers may be subject to removal from office for failure to appropriately carry out the duties of the office
    2. If an officer neglects to carry out the duties of the office, and is unresponsive to the Chair’s request for improved performance, the Chair may appoint an interim officer who will carry out all duties of the office, including attendance and voting at Executive Committee meetings. This interim officer will be presented to the Executive Committee for approval, and will serve until the officer either returns to duty, resigns, or is removed from office in accordance with these bylaws.
    3. If the Council Chairperson neglects to carry out the duties of the office, and is unresponsive to the executive committee’s request for improved performance, the Chairperson Elect will be the interim chair and will carry out all duties of the office until the officer returns to duty, resigns, or is removed from office in accordance with these bylaws.
    4. An officer may be removed from office for failure to appropriately carry out the duties of the office by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote by the council. This vote can be held in person, by phone or electronically.
    5. Replacement of an officer who has resigned or has been removed shall take place at the next regularly scheduled election as described in these bylaws, unless the chair or executive committee deems it necessary or prudent to call for an emergency vote of the full SILC to fill the position. An emergency vote can be held in person, by phone or electronically.
    6. If the Chairperson wishes to terminate office prior to the expiration of the term, he or she may do so by submitting written notice of resignation to the Chairperson Elect.
    7. If the Chairperson-Elect, Secretary, or Treasurer wishes to terminate their respective office prior to the expiration of the term, he or she may do so by submitting written notice of resignation to the Chairperson.

 

VII. Meetings

  1. Scheduling/Notice
  1. The Chairperson (in consultation with Council) shall establish a regular, on-going schedule for Council meetings at the beginning of each new state fiscal year. The schedule will be published at that time. Each member will be notified of the date, time, and location of the meeting at least one (1) month in advance.
    1. The Council shall meet at least four (4) times in each calendar year or as often as needed and as funds are available.
    2. All meetings will be held at a location meeting the accessibility standards of the ADA and will include provisions for a sign language interpreter for persons with hearing impairments and other reasonable adaptations needed for Council members and guests with disabilities.
    3. All regularly scheduled Council meetings shall be open to the public. Advance notice of such meetings shall be given, allowing sufficient time to allow members of the public reasonable opportunity to attend.
    4. It is the intent of the Council to meet face to face at its regularly scheduled meetings. However, committee meetings may occur using electronic media.
    5. Special meetings may be held as determined by the Council Chairperson and each member will be notified in advance of such meetings.
    6. Meetings may be conducted only when a quorum is present, which is defined as a majority of voting SILC members.
  1. Conduct
    1. All SILC and Executive Committee meetings will be conducted similarly to Robert’s Rules of Order, unless otherwise indicated by these by?laws. Committee meetings may operate in a less formal manner.
  2. Minutes
    1. Attendance at and proceedings of all meetings will be recorded in minutes. Copies of minutes will be distributed to all members and DVR liaison(s) within two (2) weeks following the meeting, and to any other party upon request.
    2. Minutes will be reviewed for approval or modification and adoption at the next meeting.
    3. Minutes shall be made available in large print or Braille upon request.
  3. Voting
  1. Motions may be made, discussed, and voted upon as necessary to accomplish Council purposes, nominations and elections, and other Council business, keeping the following in mind: If a quorum is present, a motion can be approved or disapproved by a simple majority of those voting members present.
    1. Issues needing a vote in between meetings of the Council or the Executive Committee may be voted upon using electronic media. E-mail votes may occur when information is sent out in advance, an opportunity for questions to be answered is available and a reasonable deadline is set for response by a quorum of voting members.
    2. Any member present at a meeting who has a real or perceived professional, financial, personal, or legal conflict of interest, with regard to any motion made or issue presented for discussion, shall announce the conflict and abstain from voting on that motion.
    3. If a Council member is unable to attend a Council meeting and wishes to vote on an issue presented before the Council, the Council member may vote by mail or email prior to the meeting, or by proxy through the designation of another Council member as representative of the absent Council member. A Council member is allowed only two proxy votes in a given year.

 

VIII. Committees

  1. Executive Committee
    1. The four officers and chairpersons of the standing committees shall serve as the members of the Executive Committee. For purposes of a quorum, there must be a majority of the elected officers in order to conduct business.
      1. The Council, at regularly scheduled meetings, may empower the Executive Committee to act for the Council on specifically designated issues for which specific action is required prior to the next scheduled Council meeting.
      2. The Executive Committee will only vote without the approval the full Council on approving their minutes from the Executive Committee meeting.
  2. Membership on other Committees
    1. Committee members may include Council members and, where appropriate, non-Council members.
    2. The Chairperson of each committee shall be a Council member, shall be appointed by the Council Chairperson, and shall also serve as an Executive Committee member.
  3. Standing Committees
    1. Finance Committee – Develops the three-year Resource Budget for the SILC, monitors SILC expenditures, and makes recommendations for changes in spending as necessary
    2. Membership Committee – Periodically reviews SILC membership to determine compliance with Title VII, Section 705. The committee creates a recruitment plan to target potential members who will meet compliance requirements, fill vacancies, and serve the needs of the SILC. This committee implements the recruitment plan, reviews member applications, interviews potential members, and makes recommendations to the Council.
    3. Public Policy Committee – Works on advocacy issues as identified in the SILC State Plan or as they arise and are approved by the SILC; research and present information, advocacy letters, and position statements for SILC approval before disseminating to the disability community, policy makers, the press and general public.
    4. SPIL Committee – This Committee has two purposes: 1) to gather information to create a new State Plan for Independent Living and; 2) to monitor the progress of the current SPIL. In addition to SILC members the committee will include at least one representative of the DSU and two directors of Colorado CILs.
    5. Youth Committee – The members’ primary roles are to represent the youth voice regarding youth disability and transition services, focusing on services for youth with disabilities that are provided by their local CIL and other stakeholder organizations. This committee will develop and maintain relationships with other existing youth organizations, ideally within each center’s catchment area, using social media and other culturally appropriate methods. The Committee will also focus on branding and marketing the Colorado SILC & the Colorado SILC Youth Members, forging new paths for future advocates to help them understand the principles of independent living.
  4. Other Committees
  1. The Chairperson may establish ad hoc committees as he or she deems appropriate to carry out the goals, objectives, and other activities of the Council. Such ad hoc committees could be used to review the by-laws, work with Center Directors on standardizing data collection terms or other such specific, focused, and short-term goals. Ad hoc committees must include at least one Council member and may include members from outside the SILC who have an interest or expertise.
  1. Standing committees may be dissolved or reorganized upon the recommendation of the SILC Chairperson and by vote of the Council.

 

Section IX: Conferences and Travel on Behalf of the SILC

 

  1. From time to time, the SILC may send members to IL-related conferences and training, as funding allows.
  2. This travel may be out of state. Costs for such travel will follow State Travel Rules. State Travel Rules require approvals through the State Department that the Designated State Entity is housed in.
  1. Individuals may request or volunteer to attend such events. The decision as to who to send rests with the Council who will consider the member’s commitment and follow-through on his/her responsibilities as listed in Section IV. Membership, Article D.
  2. Members who do travel and represent the SILC are required to make a report on what they learned to the SILC at its next regularly scheduled meeting.