Bylaws

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 Florida Foster/Adoptive Parent Association, Inc. Bylaws 

Approved by General Membership on 11/16/07 

(Amended by General Membership on February 20, 2010) 

(Amendment by Registered Voters August 1, 2010 and June 23, 2010) 

(Revision by Registered Voters April 8, 2014) 

(Revision by Registered Voters June 11, 2016) 

(Revision by Registered Voters April 18, 2019) 

ARTICLE I 

The name of this association shall be the Florida Foster/Adoptive Parent Association, Inc., referred to in these bylaws as Florida FAPA. 

ARTICLE II 

Section I – Purpose 

1. To provide supportive services to foster and adoptive families in the State of Florida’s child welfare system. 

2. To educate foster and adoptive families and provide tools to maximize their success as participants in Florida’s child welfare system. 

3. To advocate at local, state and national venues for foster and adoptive families in Florida’s child welfare system. 

4. To facilitate better communication between stakeholders in the child welfare system for the benefit of foster and adoptive families. 

Section II – Vision 

A Florida where children thrive because their foster and adoptive parents are fully empowered and recognized as expert partners in developing healthy families. 

Section III – Mission 

To support, educate, and advocate on behalf of foster and adoptive families. 

ARTICLE III 

A member is defined as a licensed Foster Parent, Adoptive Parent and/or Kinship care provider in accordance with Florida Statutes, in addition to the types of memberships listed below. 

Section I – Classification and Qualification of Membership 

1. Affiliate Membership – Non-Dues paid members which are licensed Foster and/or Adoptive Parents and Kinship care providers in accordance with Florida Statutes. This membership has no voting privileges. 

2. Partner Membership – Dues paid members which are licensed Foster and/or Adoptive Parents and Kinship care providers in accordance with Florida Statutes. This membership has voting privileges. 

3. Individual Supporting Membership – members must be dues paid interested persons that support the purpose and efforts of Florida FAPA. This membership does include voting rights. 

4. Agency/Organization Supporting Membership – Members must be dues paid interested agencies/organizations that support the purpose and efforts of Florida FAPA. This membership does not include voting rights. 

5. Local Association/Support Group Membership – Local Foster/Adoptive/Kinship Care Association membership is granted upon payment of dues. This membership includes voting rights through the President’s Council. 

6. CBC Membership – This membership is granted upon payment of established dues. This membership has no voting privileges. 

Section II – Fees or Dues 

Florida FAPA Annual dues for all types of membership will be determined and set by the Board of Directors of Florida FAPA 

Section III – Board Member Attendance 

Any Board member who fails to attend two (2) meetings within the year and have not notified the President will be deemed to have abandoned the members’ seat on the Board of Directors and will be automatically recommended for removal from the Board. These meetings include those that have been scheduled and voted upon by the Board at the beginning of the year. 

  • Excused absences include but are not limited to the following: 
  • Family Emergencies 
  • Illness (including immediate family) 
  • Death in Family 
  • Work 

The Board member must notify the Florida FAPA President 24 hours prior to the meeting, unless, in extreme circumstances, within 48 hours of absence. 

Section IV – Vacancy on Board 

1. When there is a vacancy on the Board, the President shall bring forth an appointment to fill the vacancy to be confirmed by the Board of Directors. 

2. In the event the Presidency is vacated, the Executive Board will appoint an interim President from among the existing Executive Board members to be ratified by the Board of Directors. The Interim President will hold office until the current term is completed. 

3. The appointed interim President of Florida FAPA cannot be a President of any other Association. In the event that they are, they must resign within 30 days of appointment at the local level and must submit a copy of the resignation letter to the Florida FAPA Secretary. 

ARTICLE IV 

Meetings 

1. The membership of Florida FAPA shall meet, at a minimum, quarterly during each calendar year. 

2. The Secretary will post general quarterly meeting notices along with minutes from the last meeting 30 days prior to meetings and post minutes from the meetings within 10 working days on the Florida FAPA website. 

3. Board meetings shall be voted on and posted to the website by December 31st for each year. 

4. All meetings shall be conducted in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order Revised. 

5. Board meetings are open to the general public, except in those circumstances where confidential discussion is of the utmost necessity. 

ARTICLE V 

Section I – Board Composition and Term limits 

1. Executive Board positions must be filled with a Foster or Adoptive Parent. 

2. The Executive Board shall consist of elected positions: President, External Vice President, Internal Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. The Executive Board is responsible for the business operations of Florida FAPA. 

3. The Board of Directors shall consist of a minimum of 4 and a maximum of 10 additional members. All board members must be approved the Executive Board. The Board of Directors is responsible for the strategic planning and advisory council for Florida FAPA. 

4. Standard term of office for executive officers is 2 years from January 1st. The office of President, External Vice President and Treasurer shall be nominated and elected in the even numbered years to begin serving in the odd year; and the office of Internal Vice President and Secretary shall be nominated and elected in odd numbered years, to begin serving at the beginning of the even year. This method makes it possible to maintain an experienced officer on the Board at all times. No executive officer may hold the same office for more than 3 consecutive terms, a maximum of 6 years. 

5. At the request of the Executive Board, an officer shall vacate his/her position if he/she has failed to fulfill the duties and responsibilities of their position. 

6. The President of Florida FAPA cannot be a President of any other Association. 

7. The same person may not fill 2 offices for an entire term, only temporarily, till the next voting cycle. 

8. No member of the Florida FAPA Board of Directors can have a verified abuse report or have had their foster parent license revoked for cause. 

9. All additional Board members will be appointed by the Executive Board with a 2-year term limit. At the end of the 2-year term an evaluation will be performed for continued service. 

10. All board members are expected to sign an affidavit of good moral character and adhere to that agreement for the duration of their terms. 

11. Past President (Ex-officio) – an advisory non-voting position. 

Section II – Nomination of Officers 

1. Nominations are made to the Nominations Chair prior to the June quarterly general membership meeting of Florida FAPA. At this meeting nominations may also be made from the floor. Once the meeting is adjourned, nominations are closed. 

2. For the nominations to be accepted, the nominees must be Partner members of Florida FAPA for one year with a record of at least 50% attendance at Florida FAPA’s quarterly membership meetings, have served on a Florida FAPA committee for one year and/or served on their local association board for a period of one year; and have no member of the same household currently serving on the Board of Directors. 

3. Must be a Partner member and dues paid by January 1st in order to be nominated. 

4. If the nominee is elected to the office of Florida FAPA President, they may not be president of any other local FAPA at the start of their term. 

5. Within 30 days of accepting the nomination the candidate must present to the nomination chair a letter of recommendation from the CBC, copy of current foster care license or final judgment of permanency. 

6. In case of a sole nominee, he/she can be elected by acclamation by the Board of Directors. 

Section III – Election of Officers 

1. Ballots will be distributed no less than thirty (30) days prior to the last quarterly general membership meeting of Florida FAPA for the calendar year, ballots will be distributed to all eligible members. 

2. Members can either mail their ballot, scan and email or hand-carry their ballot to the meeting. No ballots will be given out at the membership meeting. 

3. The Nominations Chair or their designee will be present at the meeting to collect and count the ballots. Two volunteers will be selected from the membership to assist in counting the ballots. 

4. All ballots will be stored electronically for each election for a period of four years. 

5. The candidate with the greatest number of recorded votes wins. 

Article XII 

Section I – Statement of Policy 

Florida FAPA shall be self-governing, non-profit, non-partisan and non-sectarian and shall not discriminate against any person because of sex, race, creed, religion or National origin. 

Florida FAPA shall not engage in any activities or exercise any powers that are contrary to law or to the primary purposes of Florida FAPA. 

Florida FAPA shall solicit and receive funds for the accomplishment and furtherance of the purposes of Florida FAPA. 

Article VI 

Section I – Amendment of Bylaws 

The Bylaws of this Association may be added to, amended, or repealed, in whole or in part, by a majority vote of the Florida FAPA Board members in attendance at any meeting of Florida FAPA; provided that notice of the intention to do so has been emailed to each Florida FAPA Board member at least thirty (30) days prior to the scheduled meeting. 

The Bylaws of this Association will be reviewed no less than once a year and if deemed necessary changes will be made. 

Article VII 

Section I – Dissolution 

This Association shall continue perpetually unless dissolved. In the event of dissolution, the residual assets of Florida FAPA will be donated to one or more organizations of similar intent and interest or to the Federal state or Local government for exclusive public purpose, as chosen by membership votes. Said organization will be exempt as an organization described in section 501 (c)(3) and 170 (c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 or corresponding sections of any prior or future Internal Revenue Code. 

These Bylaws were passed by a majority vote on February 20, 2010 at the general membership meeting of the FSFAPA in West Palm Beach, Florida. 

These Bylaws were amended by a majority of registered voters on August 1, 2010 and June 23, 2012. 

The revision to these Bylaws were passed by a majority vote on April 8, 2014 at the general membership meeting of the FSFAPA in Tallahassee, Florida. 

A revision to these Bylaws was passed by a majority vote on June 11, 2016 at the general membership meeting of the FSFAPA in Orlando, Fla. 

Amanda Cruse, President 

Curtis Byrd, Secretary