October 6, 2015
This month, as members of AIA Michigan, we have been asked to vote on important changes to the AIA Michigan bylaws. Each AIA member in Michigan should have received an electronic ballot to cast your vote, or you can attend the Annual meeting to vote in person.
The AIA Detroit Executive Committee feels it our duty as your elected leadership to voice an opinion on the proposed bylaws revisions. Recent communications from AIA Michigan asked the following questions for each of the revisions. Here are our thoughts:
Should sections be allowed?
This revision is not as simple as it appears. For the better part of this year discussions have centered around the realignment goals of AIA National. Creating Sections is a vital component to allow more discussions next year on how the Components of the Michigan region are shaped. AIA Detroit will not become a section in the foreseeable future, but for other Chapters around the State, it is a good solution and we should not impede their progress. AIA Detroit supports this concept.
Should the board be reduced from twenty four directors to sixteen?
Although AIA National has reduced the size of their board, much more discussion needs to take place over the next year before this decision should be made. This revision is premature and should be done AFTER a realignment plan is developed and the discussion about how to properly represent the membership around the state on the AIA Michigan Board has been fully resolved. The revision can be made then, therefore, the AIA Detroit Executive Committee does not support this revision at this time
Should associates be allowed to hold the office of secretary or treasurer?
AIA Detroit supported this change to our bylaws several years ago. It is an important step in both diversification and perspective for a healthy organization. AIA Detroit leadership supports this change in bylaws.
Should proxy voting be eliminated?
Elimination of the vote by proxy is not an issue that should be aligned with allowing electronic voting. Voting by proxy is generally allowed by most organizations and by law. While we see no reason to eliminate this in the bylaws, you should vote as you see fit in this case.
Should board members be removed with cause, if they miss three board meetings?
Again, not a simple issue, but one we can support. Being a Michigan Board member comes with a responsibility to represent our fellow members by attending meetings and getting involved with the process.