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Welcome to Hopkinton Soccer Club

Welcome to Hopkinton Soccer Club

By Laws


As Amended and approved April 8, 2014

ARTICLE 1:  Name and Legal Structure of Organization

The organization shall be known as the Hopkinton Soccer Club (hereinafter “HSC”), and shall be operated as a qualifying tax exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 (or the corresponding provision of any future United States Internal Revenue Laws).  HSC’s legal address shall correspond to the current and duly elected HSC President’s legal residence.

ARTICLE 2:  Mission

The Hopkinton Soccer Club exists to provide youth players from the Town of Hopkinton and its surrounding communities with the opportunity to play soccer at more competitive levels than those provided by the area’s recreational soccer programs.  The Bylaws supporting this organization have been adopted to encourage the highest level of achievement for our youth players and their teams.  The Club seeks to accomplish these goals through a focus on age-appropriate player development and competition on a statewide and regional level coupled with a spirit of fair play, ethical conduct, and good sportsmanship.  The organization exists for the youth of Hopkinton and its surrounding communities, and shall not be unduly influenced by the personal aspirations or goals of any individual coach, parent, player or team.  In the end, the guiding principle of the Club is that soccer, when played at the youth level, is a game – and should be fun for all players.

ARTICLE 3:  Affiliation

The Hopkinton Soccer Club is an affiliated member of any league sanctioned by the New Hampshire Soccer Association (NHSA) and the United States Youth Soccer Association (USYSA), and will maintain membership in good standing within these organizations, and comply with their constitutions and by-laws and their rules and regulations.  The Hopkinton Soccer Club is not affiliated with the Hopkinton Youth Sports Association (HYSA).

ARTICLE 4:   Membership

Club Members consist of all players in good standing in the present fiscal year as well as their parents and/or legal guardians, licensed assistant coaches, head coaches, and all members of the Board of Directors.  Any other individual with the desire to promote soccer and advance the knowledge of young players may apply to the Board for membership status.  The Club will not discriminate against any individual on the basis of race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, gender or age.   

4.1       Adherence to Standards

Every Member of the Club will adhere to the Bylaws, policies and procedures of the Hopkinton Soccer Club.

4.2       Voting Rights

All Members in good standing with the HSC shall have the right to vote at the Annual General Meeting and at any special meeting of the membership of the Club.  A family unit comprised of one player shall be allowed one vote; a family unit comprised of two players, whether on the same team or different teams, shall be allowed two votes, and so on for each ballot issue and/or nominated position.  Votes may be submitted in person or on an official ballot form prior to the meeting, if available.

ARTICLE 5:  Governing Authority

The governing authority of the Hopkinton Soccer Club shall be the Board of Directors.  The powers of the Board of Directors are delegated by the Club’s Bylaws as approved or amended.  The members of the Board of Directors are the Club’s Officers (President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer) as well as a number of at-large members totaling no fewer than one and no more than three.

5.1       Board of Directors Meetings

The Board of Directors shall conduct an official business meeting on a monthly basis on a day, time and place determined by the President.  Meetings may also be held telephonically or by videoconference.  This meeting is open to the general membership.  Official business meetings may also be called by a simple majority of the Board of Directors.

5.1.1    Quorum

A simple majority of the Board of Directors shall constitute a quorum; a quorum is required for an official business meeting. 

5.1.2    Voting

Unless otherwise specified by these bylaws, a simple majority of the quorum of the Board shall be sufficient to pass business. 

5.1.3    Special Meeting

A special meeting may be called by the President.  No business may be conducted at a special meeting other than that for which the Special Meeting was called.  A Special Meeting shall have the same quorum requirements as stated in 5.1.1 above. Voting by Email permitted

Board members may vote by email on any issue presented at a Special Meeting.

5.2  Term of Office

The term of office for each Director shall be for two fiscal years, beginning with the first official meeting following the Director’s election.  There shall be no limit to the number of terms a Director can serve.  All Officers of the Club (President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer) shall be elected annually.  There shall be no limit to the number of terms an Officer can serve.  

5.3  Elections

The Board of Directors shall be elected by the general club membership at the Annual Meeting.  To maintain continuity, the club President and Vice-President shall be elected in alternate years.  The Past President may serve for one year following the conclusion of his/her presidency without being elected.

5.3.1    Good Standing
Candidates for election to the Board must be members in good standing of the Club.      
5.3.2    Membership for at least one year
Candidates for election to the Board must have been members of the Club for at least one year.  
5.3.3    Manner of Voting
Votes may be cast by voice vote, roll call vote, or written ballot as determined by the Board of Directors.            

5.3.4    Attendance
Any Board member missing three (3) consecutive meetings without being excused by the Board of Directors shall have his or her office declared vacant and filled in accordance with the procedures established in 5.3.6 below.   
5.3.5    Removal
Any member of the Board of Directors shall be required to resign following a vote of “no confidence” in his or her conduct while in office.  A written petition, signed by ten percent (10%) of club members, shall be sufficient to bring such a matter to a vote.  In such an event, the Board must take up the petition within thirty (30) days of its receipt, or at the next regular Board meeting, whichever is sooner.  The petition of “no-confidence” must be ratified by a two-thirds majority of all current members of the Board of Directors.  If a Board member receives this vote of “no-confidence” he or she is automatically removed from the Board. 

5.3.6    Vacancies and Temporary Board Positions
From time to time, a Board position may be vacated or open.  The President has the authority to appoint a temporary board member to fill the position until the next election date.  At the next general election, the vacated/open position shall be filled by election for either the remaining year of the current term, or for a new two-year term as appropriate.          
5.3.7    Compensation 
The Board of Directors shall serve without salary for their services.  Any member of the Board of Directors may submit requests for reimbursement for expenses approved by the Board of Directors. 
5.5       Responsibility and Authority
All actions of the Board of Directors require the affirmative vote of a simple majority of the Board of Directors at an official business meeting.  The Board of Directors shall have the following responsibilities and authority: 

5.5.1    Implementation of Bylaws, Policies and Procedures 
The Board of Directors shall have the responsibility and authority to implement and enforce all provisions of the HSC’s bylaws, policies and procedures.  In addition, the Board of Directors shall recommend changes and/or amendments to the bylaws.
5.5.2    Day-to-Day Operations of the Club
 The Board of Directors shall have the responsibility and authority to conduct the ongoing day-to-day operations of the HSC.  To this end, personnel actions, operating rules, policies and procedures may be implemented upon approval of a simple majority of the Board Members present at an official Board of Directors meeting.  All actions, rules, policies and procedures must be consistent with all provisions of the Club’s bylaws. 

5.5.3    Represent the Club
The Board of Directors shall have the responsibility and authority to represent the HSC at any meetings of affiliated organizations. 

5.5.4    Development of Coaching Requirements and Evaluation Criteria
The Board of Directors shall have the responsibility and authority to require mandatory coaching licensing levels, training criteria, performance requirements, and evaluation criteria.  The Board of Directors shall appoint one head coach and at least one assistant coach for each one of the member teams.  Coaches and assistant coaches are appointed for terms of one season, and may be removed, replaced, or supplemented by the Board of Directors at any time.  All of these actions must be voted on and approved by a simple majority vote at an official Board of Directors meeting.      Licensing for Coaches
It is imperative that the quality of coaching received by our players is the best possible.  Therefore the HSC will encourage all coaches to obtain coaching licenses and other training that will benefit their work with players.  The HSC will pay the instructional fees for all approved coaching licensing classes assuming prior approval by the Board of Directors and based on the availability of adequate funds.  All U-11 and U-12 head coaches must obtain an “E” license in the interest of providing high quality instruction and coaching to the players.  All U-11 and U-12 assistant coaches are strongly encouraged to obtain an “E” license.  All head coaches in the U-13 and higher age groups must obtain an “E” license, and are strongly encouraged to earn a “D” license in the interest of providing continuing high level instruction and coaching to the players.  The Board of Directors reserves the right to require any coach to attend clinics that the Board deems necessary or that may be required by the League. Nepotism
There shall be no restriction barring a head coach or assistant coach from coaching a team that includes his/her own children.  However, on any team where a head coach is coaching his/her own children – all decisions about cuts, playing time, and player positions shall be made in conjunction with the entire coaching staff. 

5.5.5    Approval of Teams
The Board of Directors shall have the responsibility and authority to approve the formation of member teams.  This includes determining the number and makeup (age groups and specific members) of member teams.
5.5.6    Approval of Players and Player Assignments to Teams
The Board of Directors shall have the responsibility and authority to approve the applications of all youths desiring to participate in the HSC, and to conduct tryouts in conjunction with the selected coaching staffs.   
The HSC requires that open tryouts be conducted at least once a year at a time chosen by the Board that meets the requirements of the league(s) that Club teams choose to play in.  Every effort shall be made to publicize tryouts.  A sufficient number of tryout sessions, as determined by the Board, shall be held to evaluate and differentiate between all players competing for spots on HSC teams.  Every player must attend at least one tryout – absolutely no exceptions will be made to this rule without prior Board approval. The HSC is a competitive club, and as such, the head coaches of each age group, in conjunction with their assistant coach(es), may make cuts as necessary based on talent, attitude, and/or effort to ensure the best possible experience for all players. Age Policy
In order to best develop each player and maintain continuity among teammates, it is the desire of the HSC to create and maintain competitive teams comprised of players of a single birth year extending from August 1 through July 31. 

The goal of the club is to have single age group teams.
The only exceptions to this policy shall be as follows: (1) if a player’s birth year and school year are not compatible, the player may “play up” with his/her school year pending approval of both affected coaches and at least a majority vote of the Board of Directors; (2) if a coach is unable to fill his roster with the required number of players, the coaches affected and the Board will meet to determine optimal player placement based on the best interest of the players and teams involved, and the interests of the Club as a whole.  Board decisions shall be final.  On very rare occasions, a parent may, by written request to the Board President, seek to have their son or daughter “play up” on an older team, or to have their daughter play on a boys’ team.  All such requests shall be discussed by both affected coaches and voted on by the Board of Directors.  Such decisions shall be made based on the available number of players on both affected teams, and the interests of the Club as a whole.  A majority decision of the Board shall be required to approve all such requests.             

5.5.7    Approval of Budget
The Board of Directors shall have the responsibility and authority to develop the HSC’s budget, approve budgeted operating expenditures and determine registration fees and special assessments.  All of these actions must be approved at an official board meeting.  With regard to expenditures, the President may authorize non-budgeted expenditures of up to $500 without a vote of the Board of Directors.  The President is responsible for reporting such action to the Board of Directors at the next regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Directors. 

5.5.8    Disciplinary Action
The Board of Directors shall have the responsibility and authority to suspend, bar completely, or to otherwise discipline any player, coach, assistant coach, manager or adult member or parent for due cause.  Due cause shall include but not be limited to: (a) failure to comply with rules and regulations; (b) failure to fulfill membership requirements; (c) any violent, threatening or abusive action or language directed toward a player, coach, referee, parent, or Board Member; or (d) any action that is disruptive to club operations or hinders the fulfillment of club objectives.  Any such action must be voted on at an official Board of Directors meeting, and any vote to impose disciplinary action requires a majority vote of the Board of Directors.  Once elected, a Board Member may only be removed from office via a two-thirds vote of the Board of Directors.  

ARTICLE 6:   Positions and Specific Assignment of Duties

The Board of Directors shall be comprised of the President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Coaching Director and Registrar, Equipment and Fields Director, Communications Director, and Past-President. 

6.1       President
The President of the HSC shall have the following responsibilities: (1) organize and preside at official Board of Directors’ Meetings and general membership meetings; (2) overall management of the Club’s operations, including operational decisions with respect to specific situations, including the authority to temporarily suspend any appointed HSC coach, assistant coach or official when it is impractical to solicit the approval of the full Board of Directors – with the understanding that any such action must be reported to the full Board of Directors in a timely manner and subjected to their review and approval; (3) implementation of decisions made by the Board of Directors; (4) signatory of checks in the absence of the Treasurer; (5) appointment of temporary members of the Board of Directors (to be approved by a majority vote of the existing directors); (6) to act as the HSC’s primary representative at mandatory affiliate meetings; (7) to participate in the evaluation of coaches and review parent questionnaires; (8) in conjunction with the Fields Director, to work with the relevant town officials to ensure adequate field time and to verify that game fields are properly lined and are in a safe and playable condition; (9) overall public relations for the HSC; and (10) liaison with local government and school officials on all matters affecting the Club.

6.2       Vice-President
The Vice-President of the HSC shall (1) assume all powers of the President in his/her absence; (2) represent HSC at all league meetings and functions and the primary league contact; (3) develop game schedules and field assignments; (4) coordinate referee assignments with the league; (5) coordinate and develop the referee mentoring program; (6) work with the President and Coaching Director in evaluating all HSC coaches; (7) perform such additional responsibilities as may be assigned by the President or the Board 

6.3       Secretary
The Secretary of the HSC shall (1) take and maintain the minutes of all Board of Directors meetings which, upon approval by the Board, shall become the official record of actions taken by the Board of Directors; (2) maintain the HSC bylaws, policies and procedures and collect and propose any changes to same from club members; (3) handle other club correspondence not otherwise assigned; (4) maintain files of all official club correspondence generated by the Board of Directors; (5) send out meeting notifications and all other official HSC correspondence 

6.4       Registrar and Treasurer
The Registrar and Treasurer of the HSC shall (1) develop the annual HSC budget and submit said budget to the Board of Directors for approval in accordance with the HSC’s fiscal year; (2) maintain a record of all HSC expenditures and keep the Board of Directors apprised of the status of expenditures against the budget in a Treasurer’s report at all monthly meetings; (3) maintain the HSC’s checking account and such other accounts as the HSC may set up; (4) maintain the HSC’s financial and tax records and related documents; (5) file and maintain the HSC’s Articles of Incorporation with the State of New Hampshire; and (6) organize and manage tryouts and make assignments of players to teams in conjunction with the Board of Directors.  

6.5       Coaching Director
The Coaching Director and Registrar of the HSC shall (1) develop, manage or advise the Board and all HSC coaches of programs to improve and enhance the knowledge and skill of the HSC’s coaches; (2) ensure that the HSC’s coaches at all levels meet the HSC’s and the league’s licensing and training requirements; (3) act as the coaches’ representative to the Board of Directors and communicate policy decisions, procedures, and other relevant information from the Board to the coaches; and (4) in association with the President and Vice-President, evaluate coaches and recommend appointments, developmental actions, or removal of individual coaches – which recommendations shall  be made to the full Board of Directors for approval 

6.6       Equipment and Fields Director
The Equipment and Fields Director of the HSC shall (1) schedule all practice and game locations in conjunction with the Town of Hopkinton and league contacts; (2) coordinate all activities associated with maintaining and preparing fields/equipment for games and practices; (3) ensure that practice and game fields are in safe and playable condition, and are mowed and lined accordingly; (4) inventory, manage and account for all HSC equipment; (5) procure such additional equipment as shall be required by the HSC or its teams; (6) prepare an annual budget for equipment and submit same to the Treasurer for inclusion in the annual budget; (7) procure team uniforms on a timely basis; (8) prepare an annual budget for uniforms and submit same to the Treasurer for inclusion in the annual budget; (9) prepare competitive bidding presentations for purchases of uniforms, warm-ups, jackets, bags and related apparel and equipment on an ongoing basis for Board of Directors’ review 

6.7       Communications Director 
The Communications Director of the HSC shall (1) gather, organize and distribute a newsletter at the beginning of each season; (2) prepare and distribute periodic e-bulletins on newsworthy items including significant Board decisions and team accomplishments, etc.; (3) update the HSC website; (4) timely utilize the local print, TV and other media to disseminate information about the HSC and its teams; (5) assist various Board members with their communications needs for various Board-sanctioned activities including games, fund-raisers, tryouts and training schedules; (6) build positive relationships with the Town of Hopkinton and its Boards, local media outlets, and local businesses for the purpose of supporting the HSC; (7) developing a sponsorship program for the HSC and its teams 

ARTICLE 7:  Fiscal and Seasonal Year

7.1       Fiscal Year
The HSC’s fiscal year shall begin on January 1 and end on December 31.

7.2       Seasonal Year
The HSC’s seasonal year is defined by the United States Soccer Federation.     

ARTICLE 8:   Annual Meeting and Other Official Membership Meetings 

There shall be an annual meeting of the HSC, usually held in January of each year.  The Board of Directors shall provide the membership with 90 days prior notice of the meeting.  Other special official membership meetings may be called at any time during the year by the Board of Directors with at least two weeks’ prior notice to the membership.  Notice is sufficient if posted on the HSC website.  

ARTICLE 9:   Bylaw Amendments     

Amendments to these bylaws require the approval of a simple majority of all of the voting members present at the Annual Membership meeting.  Any member can submit a proposed amendment to the bylaws, requesting a vote by the general membership at the annual membership meeting.  Any such proposal must be submitted to the HSC Secretary, in writing, at least 60 days before the Annual Meeting.  All proposed amendments to the bylaws must be circulated to the general membership at least 30 days prior to the Annual Meeting.  Notice to the membership shall be sufficient by posting proposed amendments to the HSC website. 

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