Bullsharks Team Bylaws

The Lisbon Bullsharks Swim Team is governed by rules and regulations enacted by the association, to provide framework for our operations. 


NATO Lisbon International Swim Team
By-Laws
ARTICLE I – GENERAL
Organization. The name of the organization will be the NATO Lisbon International Swim Team (hereafter referred to as the “Bullsharks”) or the Lisbon Bullsharks Association in Portugal. The Bullsharks is a non-profit competitive swim club.  The club is affiliated with and eligible to compete within the European Forces Swim League in accordance with EFSL policy.  
2. Affiliation. The Bullsharks is locally affiliated with Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO, and the Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Center, two NATO organizations headquartered in the Lisbon, Portugal area. The Bullsharks is a non-profit organization, administered and financially supported by its own members with assistance and support through NATO Moral Welfare Activities Committee (MWAC).
Article II – OBJECTIVE
The NATO Bullsharks is formed in order to foster into the youngest members of our international community a spirit of togetherness as part of an international swim team that believes in the values of conditioning, teamwork, determination and sportsmanship.
Article III – MEMBERSHIP
1. Swimmer Eligibility
Age eligibility is 5 years old and up to and including age 19.
Each swimmer on the team must be from at least one of the following categories in order to be eligible for membership in the Bullsharks, which shall be confirmed via registration for the competitive season (September thru league championship meet):
(1) Children of military persons living and assigned outside of their home country;
(2) Children of government employees who are living and assigned to positions outside of their home country;
(3) Children of persons employed by the military or the government organization sponsoring the team and not a resident of the receiving state (This includes children of government contractors);
(4) A youth attending a DOD, DND or a recognized equivalent school sponsored by a sending state;
(5) Children attending an EFSL eligible international school (CAISL, St. Julian’s, St. Dominic’s, IPS, OIS and other schools supported by the diplomatic/military community fall in this category) and not themselves or dependent children of residents of the receiving state;
(6) Children of persons assigned in NATO positions including those of the receiving state.
(7) Swimmers must not be a citizen of the host country.
In addition to the above criteria swimmers must be able to assessed as “safe to begin training” via a swim test administered by the coaching staff and will be placed in the appropriate training group.    
Swimming slots are on a space available basis, which is determined by coaching staff capacity and lane availability at designated training facility.
2. Members
a. Swimmers. Those personnel who meet the minimum ability criteria established by the Board of Directors, and whose registration fees and dues are current.
b. Parents. Parents of swimmers are voting members for selection of the Board of Directors or team votes.
c. Team Captains. There will be team captains selected by the board each swim year.   Team captains should assist the coaching staff as needed during warm-ups and be available to assist younger swimmers in understanding the importance of team competitions.   
d. Volunteers. Those personnel who volunteer to contribute their time and talent to further the objectives of Bullsharks.  
3. Responsibilities
a. Swimmer responsibilities:
(1) Display good sportsmanship.
(2) Attend and actively participate in practices and meets.
(3) Inform the coach of intent not to compete at least one week prior to each meet.
(4) Abide by the rules and regulations of the Bullsharks.
(5) Sign and uphold the Parent/Swimmer Contract.
b. Parent responsibilities:
(1) Complete the following documentation for their swimmer(s):
(a) Registration application. The registration application includes permission to be on the team, permission to release name, phone number and email contact to be used by the Club Secretary for distributing team information, and permission to have child photographed during team competitions.
(b) Emergency data card, which will be kept poolside for contact information in emergency cases.
(c) Parent / Swimmer contract.
(d) Medical info sheet.
(2) Attend parent meetings as scheduled.
(3) Assist in activities, most notably swim meets and fundraisers.
(4) Foster good sportsmanship in support of Bullsharks objectives.
(5) Assist in enforcing the rules and regulations of the Bullsharks.
4. Fees
a. The Treasurer will recommend to the Board a proposed budget, registration fee and dues schedule prior to the start of the competitive season and the off-season (Spring/Summer) training period.    This will ensure alignment with the annual MWAC bid. The board will vote to approve/modify the fee schedules at regular meetings.
b. Registration fees are due in September as part of the fee for the competitive season.   At the first registration, new swimmers will be provided a team t-shirt and swim cap.  Additional caps and apparel are available for purchase.  Registration fees are non-refundable.
c. Seasonal fees are due to the treasurer no later than September 30th/March 31st for the competitive and Spring/Summer seasons, respectively.   This should be paid in lump sum by bank transfer with allowances for families with more than one child to distribute the fees across as many months as the family has eligible swimmers.   Any other payment arrangements must be coordinated with the Club Treasurer.   The club will offer discounts based on to NATO families as well as children of members of the armed forces, with further discounts applied to non-commissioned officers/enlisted family members.
d. Swimmers whose fees are past due will be prohibited from participating in team events, including practice and swim meets.
e. The board is allocated two (2) swim scholarships that may be used at their discretion for deserving swimmers who may not be able to participate otherwise.
5. Fundraising. Fundraising is vital to the success of the swim season. Money collected as part of a fundraising effort is used to offset team administrative expenses.  A fundraising chairperson will be appointed by the board of directors as needed.
6. Meet Participation. All Bullsharks Swimmers are encouraged to participate in at least two ESFL meets in ROTA, the Divisional Championships and any additional EFSL Championship competitions for which they have qualified (Long Distance Championships and EFSL Individual Championships). In order to be eligible to attend League Championships, a swimmer is required to compete in at least three (3) EFSL meets and obtain a qualifying time.
Article IV – BOARD OF DIRECTORS
1. Board of Directors. The governing authority of the Bullsharks will be the Board of Directors (hereafter referred to as the Board) consisting of a minimum of five members for a term of one year.
2. Board members. Board members will be elected from the adult membership for terms of one year beginning at the conclusion of each competitive season (EFSL Championships, typically held in late February).  The nominations for the new Board members will be taken by email or at a regular general meeting. The vote for the new Board members will be taken by email or at a regular general meeting.  In the event of only one nominee, the new officer may assume the board position upon completion of turnover with the officer vacating the post.  The March Board meeting will be a joint meeting with current and newly elected Board members for the purpose of passing down information and the turning over of all records.
a.  Special requirements for Treasurer.  Due to the fiscal responsibility of the Treasurer and affiliation with NATO in Portugal, the Treasurer must be covered by the NATO Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) with Portugal.  Being covered by the NATO SOFA is defined as military or government civilian in a NATO post at Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO (SFN), Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Center (JALLC), NATO Communications and Information Agency Customer Support Unit Lisbon (NCIA CSU Lisbon), or the (future) NATO Communication and Information System School  (NCISS) or their spouse (dependant).
b.  Special Requirement for the Executive Board.  In addition to the Treasurer, the Executive Board shall maintain a second officer covered under the NATO SOFA.  The other NATO SOFA board member should be the President.  In the circumstance that the President is not covered under the NATO SOFA, the other board member may fill any of the other executive board offices, however the financial responsibilities normally performed by the President will follow to the office of the NATO SOFA covered board member (Article V, paragraph 2.c. and 2.e.).
3. Advisory committees. The Board may appoint advisory committees, as the need requires, serving the Board. A legal advisor may be appointed by the President or a member of the Board with the approval of the Board, and shall serve as an advisor to the Board.
4. Quorum. A quorum for transacting business at a scheduled Board meeting will consist of 3/5ths of the Executive Board members.   In the event that a member of the Executive Board cannot attend the meeting, his or her input/vote should be solicited in writing (via email) prior to publishing decisions to the general membership.  
Article V – DUTIES OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS AND OFFICERS
1. Board procedure. The Board will be charged with formulating and acting upon all matters of policy and procedures affecting the operation of the Bullsharks.
a. The Board will meet monthly, and as needed, with due notice to all members of the Board.
b. The Board shall consist of both elected and additional appointed officers.
c. The Executive Board shall consist of the President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer and a member at large chosen by the current officers.   The members of the Executive Board are elected positions.
d. Additional Board members may be elected by the general membership or appointed by the Executive Board as required. These positions consist of the Head Coach, Travel Coordinator, Meet Director, Head Official, Statistician, Webmaster/Publicity Coordinator, Portuguese Liaison Coordinator, and two Members at Large.
e. The Executive Board has the authority (when convened by the President) to resolve grievances, make arrangements with individual members experiencing financial hardship, and approve all expenditures.   
2.  President responsibilities:
a. Preside at all meetings of the Bullsharks.
b. Call special meetings when necessary.
c. Sign on the treasury in the absence of the Treasurer.
d. Appoint, with the approval of the elected officers, various committee chairpersons.
e. Sign any contracts for the Bullsharks when authorized by the Board.
f. Track documented discipline grievances submitted to the Board.
3. Vice President responsibilities:
a. Act as the President in the absence of the President and assume the office should a vacancy occur.
b. Assist the President in their duties as required.
4. Secretary responsibilities:
a. Record the minutes of all meetings, which will be retained as a permanent record.
b. Coordinate plans for the monthly meetings and all special activities.
c. Make copies of minutes available to be posted on the website to all Board members in a timely manner.
d. Notify the Board of scheduled meetings and special meetings.
e. Coordinate annual and ongoing registration of team members.
f. Maintain team membership files.
g. Maintain contact database including email addresses.
h. Maintain regular oversight of the club’s functional email address (lisbonbullsharks@gmail.com) and handle routine team-related correspondence by responding or forwarding to appropriate club officer for action.  
5. Treasurer responsibilities:
a. Receive dues and maintain a current Bullsharks of membership status.
b. Submit a monthly financial statement to the Board.
c. Be present at fundraising events and other functions if possible to take charge of financial matters.
d. Pay all authorized invoices and expenses.
e. Maintain an accurate account of receipts and disbursements.
f. Be responsible for all Bullsharks funds.
g. Have the financial records audited annually by MWAC as directed.
h. Maintain a record of individuals with outstanding accounts to Bullsharks with the status of each account.
i. Submit, and absent the availability of the club president, present all fundraising requests prepared by the Finance Committee and approved through the board to MWA Committee.  
6. Head Coach responsibilities:
a. Serve as a member of the Board after being appointed by the Board. The appointment is valid until withdrawn by the board.
b. Implement the objectives of the Bullsharks.
c. Comply with the policies and procedures of the Board.
d. Maintain discipline in accordance with the parent / swimmer contract.
e. Be responsible for training the team members.
f. Request Board assistance when needed for practices and meets.
g. Ensure all scheduled meets have coach coverage, and assist Meet Director / Coordinator.
h. Ensure all practices have adequate coaching coverage.
i. Schedule coaches meetings as needed.
j. Be available for presentation of awards.
k. Provide feedback to parents and children regarding progress and achievements of swimmers.
l. Attend required league meetings and training events.
7. Travel Coordinator responsibilities:
a. Work with the President and head coach to develop a package to give to all teams of the EFSL at the EFSL President’s Meeting to promote teams coming to Lisbon. In addition, the Travel Coordinator must work to obtain hotel packages, research transportation airfares to Lisbon from other EFSL destinations.
b. Research options for affordable transportation and lodging (as a group, whenever possible) to away meets, and present such information to families in writing or at regularly scheduled meetings.   
c. Work with Treasurer to maintain records of travel plans of individuals participating in selected events.   Arrange transportation, accommodations, and meals as authorized by Board emphasizing cohesive team accommodations.
d. Maintain records for the purpose of reimbursement.   
8. Meet Director responsibilities:
a. Arrange and coordinate all aspects of hosted swim meets IAW EFSL guidelines.
b. Be responsible for coordinating local volunteers for Bullsharks hosted competitions.
c.  In conjunction with Team Statistician, Travel Coordinator and Head Official, develop meet-related correspondence (Meet Announcements, Meet entry shells, volunteer requirements) to send to visiting clubs.
9. Fundraising Coordinator responsibilities:
a. Research and coordinate appropriate activities to offset team general expenses or to fund specific board-approved activities.
b. Once approved by the board, coordinate volunteers to support each event.
c. Maintain records of those participating in each event and submit to the Board for review and approval.
10. Publicity Coordinator responsibilities:
a. Responsible for publicizing meet result and photos after each event.
b. Responsible for informing the Lisbon community about the Lisbon International Swim Team and recruiting new members.
C. Develop publicity products (newsletters, social media products) during the spring/summer months to generate new interest.
11. Statistician responsibilities:
a. Must have a strong working knowledge of computer programs and should attend league-sponsored initial and refresher training.
b. Maintain current software license for league required statistical program (Meet Manager/Team Manager by ACTIVE) and team computer operating system.   
c. Provide current/archived statistical information for coaches.
d. Submit post-competition information to EFSL sources within deadline.
e. Assist the Head Coach in compiling and organizing data in preparation for events.
f. Be present at home meets.
g. Be responsible for Bullsharks laptop computer, printer, paper, set-up, and signage around statistician area for events.
h. Coordinate with awards personnel for presentations of medals and ribbons.
i. Provide record of events requiring medals for upcoming meets to the Meet Director / Supply Coordinator.
12. Portuguese Liaison Coordinator responsibilities. Responsible for coordinating with local Portuguese agencies in supporting Bullsharks initiatives with the Portuguese community, to include hosting of swim meets with and using Portuguese facilities for Bullsharks events.
13. Member at Large responsibilities:
a. Attend and actively participate in scheduled Board meetings.
b. Be available, as needed, by the Board to implement the objectives of the Bullsharks.
c.  May concurrently serve in another club officer position other than the four other elected positions (President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer) and should be selected to ensure that NATO equities are adequately represented within the executive board.   
14.  Head Official Responsibilities:
a.  The club’s Head Official should be the most-senior person in terms of EFSL Officiating Qualifications, and whenever possible should be Head Official/Referee qualified.
b.  Preside over the conduct of the meet IAW EFSL competition rules – in the event that the team Head Official is not a qualified referee, coordinate with visiting teams to ensure EFSL requirements for officials are met.
c.  Coordinate with Division/League Head Referee to conduct annual initial/refresher training for club officials.  
d.  Maintain starting/timing system in working order.   
e.  In conjunction with Meet Director and Statistician, ensure materials (clipboards, DQ sheets, meet programs) are ready for use at each meet and that the overall volunteer requirements are met.
15.  Minor Property Manager:
a.  The board should appoint someone from the club officers or general membership to handle and order, as needed, adequate inventory of club merchandise and clothing, and maintain control of the unsold inventory.    Inventory of the club’s minor property (starting system, timing systems, supplies) should be handled by club officers with adequate records maintained and updated on an annual basis.
Article X – DISCIPLINE / GRIEVANCES
1. Discipline. The coaching staff is responsible for good order and discipline at practices and meets. At the discretion of the Head Coach, a member / swimmer can be removed and prohibited from participating in the next practice. All cases of disciplinary action shall be reported to the Bullsharks President within 24 hours.
2. Grievances. Any member, coach, Board member, or member’s parent may file a grievance to the Bullsharks Board using the following procedure: The person filing the complaint must contact a Bullsharks Board member to serve written notice that a complaint is being filed. The Board member will contact the Executive Board to resolve the situation or the entire Board may be convened. In addition to the above, the Board may remove a Bullsharks member from the Bullsharks for repeated disciplinary infractions or a severe action as determined by the board: examples include but are not limited to: refusal to participate in meets or practice, fighting, inappropriate behaviour during practice or competition, or failure to maintain good financial standing with the team. The decision of the Board is final.
Article XI – FISCAL POLICIES
1. All fiscal records will be maintained in accordance with generally accepted accounting procedures.
2. The Bullsharks is a private non-profit organization.
3. In the event that the Bullsharks disbands or in fact ceases to function, any net assets, including those in the treasury, will be placed in custodial care of the MWAC fund for a period of one year or dispersed as directed by the Board.
Article XII – MEETINGS
1. General membership meetings will be held as scheduled.
2. The Board may call special meetings of the Bullsharks with appropriated notification.
3. Notification will be given at least ten days before a meeting of the Bullsharks if possible.
Article XIII – RECORDS
1. Each Board member will maintain a current book of the duties and responsibilities of their office.
2. The current procedures for the day-to-day business, contacts, and phone numbers will be reviewed annually before transferring the records to a successor.
Article XIV – PASSAGE OF THE BY-LAWS
1. Initial Passage of the By-Laws will be by majority vote of the voting membership to be held at the general membership meeting.
2. The By-Laws of the Bullsharks may be amended at a meeting of the General Membership or by electronic voting via Email to the official email address on record with the Secretary. All voting by email will be open for 96 hours. Email voting will only be used when circumstances preclude a meeting of general membership.