DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS
CONSTITUTION AND BY-LAWS
WRANGELL COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATION
APPROVED APRIL 30, 1942
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
WASHINGTON : 1950
CONSTITUTION AND BY-LAWS OF THE WRANGELL
COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATION, ALASKA
We, a group of Indians having a common bond of residence in the neighborhood of Wrangell, Territory of Alaska, in order to promote our welfare through the development and operation of social and economic enterprises, do hereby establish this constitution and by-laws in accordance with, and by authority of, the Act of Congress of June 18, 1934 (48 Stat. 984), as amended by the Act of May 1, 1936 (49 Stat. 1250).
The name of this association shall be the Wrangell Cooperative Association, hereinafter called the Association.
SECTION 1. The membership of this Association shall consist of:
(a) All persons whose names appear on the roll prepared by the Constitution and Charter Committee in accordance with the Instructions of the Secretary of the Interior for Organization in Alaska, being all the Indians residing in the neighborhood of Wrangell;SEC. 2. New Members.
(b) All children either of whose parents is a resident of the neighborhood of Wrangell.
(a) All persons of Indian blood who establish a permanent residence within the neighborhood of Wrangell, Alaska, are eligible, and may make application for membership on forms prescribed by the Council.SEC. 3. Loss of Membership.
(a) Any member who removes his permanent residence from Wrangell shall no longer be a member of this Association, or he may give up his membership at any time upon written notice to the Secretary of the Council, in which case he shall no longer share in the activities and benefits of this Association; but he may be reinstated as a member upon written application filed with the Secretary of the Council and a majority vote of the Council present at any regular meeting.SEC. 4. Rule-making Power.-The Council may make rules and regulations governing the enrollment and adoption of members and the conditions of abandonment of membership.
(b) Any member who, after notice and an opportunity to present his defense, is found guilty by the Association of fraud or misconduct in his relations with the Association or of working deliberately against the interests of the Association, may be expelled by a two-thirds vote of the members present at any regular or special meeting. A person so expelled may be reinstated as a member upon written application filed with the Secretary of the Council and a two-thirds vote of the members present at any regular meeting.
ARTICLE III-GOVERNING BODY
SECTION 1. The governing body of this Association shall be a Council composed of eight members, elected by the adult members of the Association.
SEC. 2. The Council members shall be elected on the annual election date and shall serve for a period of two years or until their successors are elected and qualified. Vacancies may be filled by the council for any unexpired terms.
SEC. 3. The President shall be elected annually by the Council from within its membership to serve for a term of one year.
SEC. 4. The first regular Council elected under this Constitution shall divide itself into two equal groups "A" and "B" by drawing lots, whereupon the term of office of those in group "A" shall terminate on the annual election date of the next even numbered year and the term of those in group "B" shall terminate on the annual election date of the next odd numbered year. Thereafter each member of the Council shall serve two years.
SEC. 5. The Council shall organize itself within thirty days after each annual election date by electing from within or without its membership, a Secretary, a Treasurer, and such other officers as it may deem necessary. Officers elected from without the Council shall not vote therein.
SECTION 1. The annual election date shall be the first Thursday in each year.
SEC. 2. The first election of the Council shall be called and held under the direction of the General Superintendent, or his authorized agent, within six months after the ratification of this Constitution.
SEC. 3. Any adult member of the Association shall have the right to vote.
SEC. 4. All elections shall be by secret ballot and shall be held in accordance with rules and regulations of the Council.
SEC. 5. It shall be the duty of the Secretary to notify each person of his election within five days thereof.
ARTICLE V-POWERS OF THE COUNCIL
SECTION 1. The Council shall have power :
(a) To employ legal counsel, the choice of counsel and fixing of fees to be subject to the approval of the Secretary of the Interior.SEC. 2. The Council may exercise such further powers as may in the future be delegated to it by the members of this Association or by the Federal or Territorial governments.
(b) To manage and control all its economic affairs and enterprises in accordance with the charter.
(c) To provide for the manner of conducting elections.
(d) To advise, negotiate, or to consult with the Federal and Territorial governments on behalf of the Association.
(e) To levy dues, fees, and assessments on its members and to provide for the collection thereof.
(f) To provide for filling vacancies in office consistent with this Constitution.
(g) To provide for the guardianship or trusteeship of the persons and property of minors and mental incompetents consistent with Territorial and Federal law.
(h) To organize or to charter associations of its members for economic well-being of members of the Association.
(i) To prevent the sale, disposition, lease, or encumbrance of land, interests in land or water or in other assets of the Association without its consent.
(j) To engage in any lawful business that will further the economic well-being of members of the Association.
(k) To aid needy members and protect the general welfare and security of the members of the Association.
(l) To cultivate the native arts, crafts and culture of the Association.
(m) To protect and preserve the property and natural resources of the Association.
(n) To advise the Secretary of the Interior with regard to all appropriation estimates or Federal projects for the benefit of the Association prior to the submission of the estimates to the Bureau of the Budget and Congress.
ARTICLE VI-BILL OF RIGHTS
SECTION 1. It shall be the duty of this Association to maintain and protect the full constitutional rights of its members.
SEC. 2. All members of this Association in good standing shall be accorded equal right and opportunity to participate and enjoy the resources, property and benefits of the Association.
SEC. 3. All members of this Association over the age of twenty-one years shall have the right to vote.
ARTICLE VII-REMOVAL OF OFFICERS
SECTION 1. Removal and Recall.
(a) Any member or officer of the Council who is convicted of a felony or any offense involving dishonesty shall forfeit his office.SEC. 2. Filling Vacancies.-If the office of a council member is vacant for any reason, the Council may appoint his successor to serve until the next regular meeting of the Association at which time a member shall be elected to fill the unexpired term.
(b) Any member of the Council who is absent from the regular meetings of the Council for a period of three months without cause or excuse, shall have his seat declared vacant by the Council, whereupon the Council shall fill the same as any other vacancy.
(c) Upon petition signed by one-third of the members of the Association asking the recall of any member of the Council, the Council shall call a special meeting of the Association to vote upon his recall. If the council member is recalled, the Council shall proceed to elect his successor to fill the unexpired term.
The Council may for the purpose of forming a federation or union with other organizations of like character appoint a committee to meet with such other organizations, and submit its findings to said council for appropriate action.
Amendments to this Constitution and By-laws may be proposed by resolution of the Council or of the Village which amendments, if approved by the Secretary of the Interior, shall be effective when ratified by a majority vote of the adult members of the Village voting at an election called for the purpose by the Secretary of the Interior, provided that at least 30 percent of those entitled to vote shall vote in such election.
BY-LAWS OF THE WRANGELL COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATION
ARTICLE I-DUTIES OF OFFICERS
SECTION 1. The Council shall elect a President who shall preside over all meetings of the Association and shall be Chairman of the Council exercising the usual duties of Chairman and any others delegated to him. He may vote in Council meetings only in case of a tie or where the vote is by ballot.
SEC. 2. The Council shall elect a Vice-President who shall act as President in the absence or disability of the President.
SEC. 3. The Secretary of the Council shall conduct all correspondence and keep a complete and accurate record of all business transacted at Council or Association meetings. It shall be his duty to forward promptly to the General Superintendent of the Office of Indian Affairs in Alaska two copies of all minutes of all regular and special meetings of the Council or Association.
The Secretary shall record all rules, regulations and ordinances in appropriate books, indexing the same and assigning a short title, and may publish the same for the information of the Association. The Secretary shall notify each person of his election to an office of the Association within five days thereof.
SEC. 4. The Treasurer of the Council shall accept, receive, receipt for, preserve and safeguard all funds in the custody of the Council, whether Association funds or other funds for which the Council is responsible. He shall deposit all such funds in such banks or elsewhere as directed by the Council. He shall make and preserve a faithful record of such funds and shall report to the Council all receipts and expenditures and the amount and nature of all funds in his possession or custody. He shall not pay out or authorize disbursement of any funds for which he is responsible except in the manner authorized by the Council.
The books and records of the Treasurer shall be audited at least once each year by a competent auditor employed by the Council and at such other times as the Council or the Commissioner of Indian Affairs shall direct. He shall send two copies of the auditor's report to the General Superintendent. He shall also send two copies of his trial balance once each month to said General Superintendent. The Council, or the Commissioner, may require the Treasurer to give a satisfactory bond, and until then any Federal funds shall be deposited according to the direction of the General Superintendent. The Treasurer shall be present at all special or regular meetings of the Council. The Treasurer may with the advice and consent of the Council appoint assistants.
SEC. 5. The duties of all appointive officers or agents shall be clearly defined by a resolution of the Council at the time of their appointment.
ARTICLE II-QUALIFICATIONS OF OFFICERS
SECTION 1. No person may be a candidate for any elective office unless he has the qualifications of a voter.
ARTICLE III-INSTALLATION OF OFFICERS
Each person appointed or elected to an office shall subscribe to the following oath of office before entering upon the duties thereof:
"I, ----------------------------, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies; that I will carry out faithfully and impartially the duties of my office as to the best of my ability; that I will promote and protect the best interests of the Wrangell Cooperative Association, in accordance with this Constitution and By-laws."
SECTION 1. The Council shall meet on the first Wednesday of each month at 7:30 p. m., unless otherwise ordered by resolution, and may meet at such other times as may seem desirable to the Council. The President or three of the Council members, may call a special meeting on actual notice to the Council members.
SEC. 2. Unless otherwise ordered by resolution of the Council, meetings shall be held at the principal place of business of the Association, or at some convenient place as may be determined by the Association or Council.
SEC. 3. A majority of the Council shall constitute a quorum.
SEC. 4. The following shall be the order of business unless changed by or with the consent of the Council, namely,
Call to order by the President;SEC. 5. When there is no special rule, Robert's Rules of Order shall be the law governing the procedure of the Council.
Announcement of quorum;
Reading of minutes of the last meeting;
Correction or approval of minutes of last meeting;
Report of committees;
SEC. 6. Every resolution, after the explanatory clauses, shall begin with the words: "Be it resolved by the Council of the Wrangell Cooperative Association . . ."
ARTICLE V-MEETINGS OF THE ASSOCIATION
SECTION 1. The membership of the Association shall meet on the second Wednesday in October and the third Wednesday in April of each year.
SEC. 2. Special meetings of the Association may be called at any time by the Council and must be so called upon petition of one-third of the members of the Association. For such meetings reasonable written notice must be given.
SEC. 3. One-fourth of the membership of the Association shall constitute a quorum at any meeting.
SECTION 1. Where the masculine pronoun is used it shall be understood to include the feminine.
SEC. 2. The word "Adult" means a person who is twenty-one years of age or over.
SEC. 3. The term "Indian" as used in this Constitution and By-laws shall be understood to include Eskimo natives.
ARTICLE VII-RATIFICATION OF CONSTITUTION AND BY-LAWS
SECTION 1. This Constitution and By-laws shall be effective from and after the date of its ratification by a majority vote of those entitled to vote who vote at an election called for the purpose by the Secretary of the Interior, provided that at least 30 percent of the eligible voters participate in such election, such ratification to be formally certified by the Election Board.
SEC. 2. The persons entitled to vote in the election on the adoption of the Constitution and By-laws are all the adult Indians residing in the neighborhood of Wrangell, whose names appear on a roll compiled under the instructions of the Secretary of the Interior. This Constitution and By-laws are herewith approved by the Acting Assistant Secretary of the Interior and submitted for ratification by the group of Indians having a common bond of residence in the neighborhood of Wrangell, Territory of Alaska, in a popular referendum called and held under the instructions of the Secretary of the Interior.
[SEAL] W. C. MENDENHALL,
CERTIFICATION OF ADOPTION
Pursuant to an order, approved April 30, 1942, by the Acting Assistant Secretary of the Interior, the attached constitution and by-laws was submitted for ratification to the adult Indians whose names appear on the roll of the Wrangell Cooperative Association and was on February 27, 1947 , duly ratified by a vote of 61 for, and none against, in an election in which over 30 percent of those entitled to vote cast their ballots, in accordance with section 16 of the Act of June 18, 1934 (48 Stat. 984), as amended by the Act of June 15, 1935 (49 Stat. 378).
CONSTITUTION AND BY-LAWS OF THE WRANGELL
COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATION, ALASKA
Article IV, section 1 of the Constitution which reads as follows:
"Section 1. The annual election date shall be the first Thursday in each year."shall be amended to read as follows:
"Section 1. The annual election date shall be the first Thursday in February of each year."
The foregoing Amendment I is herewith approved by me and submitted for ratification by the eligible voters of the Wrangell Cooperative Association, Territory of Alaska, in a popular referendum called and held under the Instructions of the Secretary of the Interior.
DALE E. DOTY,
WASHINGTON, D. C., December 28, 1950.
Pursuant to an order approved December 28, 1950, by the Assistant Secretary of the Interior, the attached Amendment I to the Constitution and By-laws of the Wrangell Cooperative Association, Territory of Alaska, was submitted for ratification to the eligible voters of the Association, and was on February 8, 1951, duly ratified by a vote of 39 for, and 0 against, in an election in which over 30 percent of those entitled to vote cast their ballots, in accordance with Section 16 of the Indian Reorganization Act of June 18, 1934 (48 Stat. 984), as amended by the Act of June 15, 1935 (49 Stat. 378), and the Act of May 1, 1936 (49 Stat. 1250).
EDWARD P. CHURCHILL,