UNITED KINGDOM CAVE CONSERVATION EMERGENCY FUND
Constitution as approved at the NCA AGM of the 26th April 1983 and the BCRA AGM 1983.
The United Kingdom Cave Conservation Emergency Fund, hereinafter called the Fund, shall be a charitable Fund administered by the British Cave Research Association (BCRA) as a constituent member of the National Caving Association (NCA).
The objectives of the Fund shall be to support, by loan or grant, projects which further the conservation of caves and cave features as set out in detail below, wherein all reference to a cave or cave feature are intended to include historic mines, caves and other places of speleological interest within the United Kingdom.
a) To assist in the publication of material intended to promote the conservation of caves and features therein or the conservation of a specific site or group of caves.
b) To assist with the physical protection of features within a specific cave or group of caves.
c) To assist in works designed to maintain access to a cave or part of a cave, but not solely to assist exploration.
d) To assist in the purchase of land or property where such acquisition is intended to ensure the protection of, or maintenance of access to, a cave or caves.
The Fund shall be administered by non-voting Treasurer and a committee of five voting members, of which three shall form a quorum.
a) The Treasurer shall be responsible for all funds: he shall account annually to BCRA Council and through Council to the NCA AGM. The BCRA Treasurer shall be a second signatory to the Fund accounts, empowered only to sign cheques at the committee's direction, in the absence of the Fund Treasurer.
b) The committee shall determine the application of funds and the terms of financial arrangements in respect of loans and grants, on which the Treasurer will advise, and shall report annually to BCRA Council and through Council to the NCA AGM.
c) The committee shall establish its own procedures with regard to receipt and consideration of award applications and for the conduct of business. To this end it shall meet once a year to review procedures, and shall publish to NCA and BCRA the procedures then determined.
d) The Treasurer and committee posts shall be entirely honorary. Postal and stationary charges shall be borne by NCA.
a) The Treasurer shall be appointed by BCRA Council for a five year term and shall be eligible for reappointment.
b) BCRA Council shall be empowered to cancel the appointment of the Treasurer and to appoint a replacement at any time.
c) Committee members shall be appointed by BCRA Council, normally for a five year term, from amongst candidates proposed and seconded by individual voting representatives of constituent bodies on the NCA Executive. One shall retire each year in rotation and shall be eligible for reappointment.
d) In the event that a committee vacancy be unfilled for six months, BCRA Council shall be empowered to fill the vacancy.
5. LOANS AND GRANTS
Subject to the conditions below the committee may at any time make loans or grants out of the Fund to projects failing within the objectives set out in Paragraph 2, provided the project can be completed in no other way.
a) The committee may at any time sanction loans up to an individual value equalling 15% of the Capital of the Fund, provided that the total of such loans does not exceed 50% of the capital of the Fund at any one time.
b) Loans may be made for limited periods, on which, at the committee's discretion, interest may be charged up to a rate which the Treasurer could reasonably obtain by investment. A clear and binding undertaking as to the manner and rate of repayment must be entered into by all parties.
c) With the prior consent of the NCA Executive and the BCRA Council, the committee may sanction a loan exceeding the limits set out in 5a.
d) The committee may at any time award a grant not exceeding 5% of the capital of the Fund provided that not more than two such awards are made in any twelve months.
e) The Treasurer shall seek to attract further donations to the Fund, but may accept or reject specific offers at his discretion. In the event of any controversial rejection he should inform the committee, in confidence, of his reasons.
6. AMENDMENTS AND WINDING-UP
a) The NCA Executive alone may propose amendments to this constitution which may be accepted only by at least a two-thirds majority of those voting in a postal ballot of all United Kingdom voting members of BCRA: twenty-eight days clear notice for return of papers.
b) The Fund may be wound up only by resolution of the Council of BCRA, by at least a four-fifths majority of those present at a properly convened and quorate meeting. The remaining funds shall be distributed amongst all constituent bodies on NCA in proportion to their voting powers, with an request that they be used in furtherance of the objectives of this constitution.
c) In the event that BCRA ceases to be a constituent member of NCA, the fund must be wound-up and the monies distributed as under 6b above.
d) In the event that BCRA be wound-up or go into liquidation, the Fund may continue to be administered by a successor organisation, provided that the successor has aims and structure similar to BCRA and is a constituent member of NCA.
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