Ellsworth Farmers' Market By-Laws

Ellsworth Farmers’ Market By-Laws Adopted March 2021

Article 1 – Formal Title and Entity Type This organization shall be known as the Ellsworth Farmers' Market Association and shall be registered as a non-profit corporation in the State of Maine.

 Article 2 - Purpose To improve the production and marketing of local farm and garden products in Ellsworth and the surrounding areas, and to stimulate public interest in the consumption of local farm and garden products thereby supporting, preserving, and improving the quality of rural life in this area.

Article 3 - Membership Any farmer, gardener, or artisan qualifying with products grown or made in Maine (eggs, maple syrup, home baked and canned goods, prepared food products, hand crafts, fiber arts, vegetables, flowers, meats, dairy, and other farm products) shall be eligible to apply for membership in the organization. By applying, they agree to abide by the established rules and by-laws of operation and to pay membership dues. Members will vote on whether to admit new applicants at the annual meeting or a special meeting.

 Article 4 - Officers and Steering Committee The officers shall consist of Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer, and Market Manager(s). These officers, together with one at-large member, shall constitute the Steering Committee. The officers shall be elected by the members on an annual basis. Officers shall serve one-year terms and may be re-elected. Duties of the officers and Steering Committee are as follows:
Chairperson: The Chairperson shall preside at all meetings of the Association and the Steering Committee. She/he shall request the Secretary to call regular or special meetings and attend to all duties expected of such an officer.
Market Manager: The Market Manager will be responsible for the overall management and smooth functioning of the market, including assigning vendor spaces, collecting dues and set-up fees, handling conflicts that arise during market days, and enforcing market rules. The Market Manager(s) shall attend to the duties of the Chairperson in his/her absence or inability to serve. Each market location must have a manager. An individual may manage multiple market locations.
Secretary: The Secretary shall keep a record of all meetings and send out meeting notices and minutes. She/he shall maintain a current roster of members. She/he shall receive applications from prospective members and present said applications to the membership for vote.
Treasurer: The Treasurer shall keep a record of all dues and other money received from the market operation. She/he shall pay and record bills and report on the market’s finances at the annual meeting or whenever requested to do so. She/he shall be responsible for ensuring that all monies received are deposited in the market’s bank account. S/he will be responsible for doing the bookkeeping associated with SNAP, credit, and debit sales.
Steering Committee: The Steering Committee shall meet on the call of the Chairperson, or in his/her absence, the call of the Market Manager. The Steering Committee shall arrange for all meetings, and have general charge of the Association activities. The Steering Committee shall appoint new members to a vacancy on the Steering Committee between annual meetings. The Steering Committee shall be responsible for investigating any suspicion of questionable practices employed by any member. If verified, the Steering Committee is authorized to immediately enforce corrective action. The Steering Committee may appoint committees as needed. A quorum for a meeting of the Steering Committee is 4 members and a 51% majority is required for a vote of the Steering Committee to pass.

Article 5 - Meetings The Association shall hold an annual meeting to nominate and elect members of the Steering Committee, approve an annual budget and review market rules. The annual meeting shall occur in the first quarter of the calendar year. Special meetings shall be called by the Chairperson on an as-needed basis. Members in good standing shall have the privilege of voting at all meetings. Each farm membership shall have one vote. Forty percent of the membership shall constitute a quorum. Members shall be notified of a meeting at least one week prior to the meeting. A 51% majority of members in attendance is required for any vote to pass.

Article 6 - Records Every member shall have the right to examine, for any reasonable purpose, the books, records, roster of membership, and other appropriate records of the Association.

Article 7 - Dues and Liquidation Section 1. The annual dues shall be determined by the membership annually, payable to the Ellsworth Farmers' Market Association. The membership may also set a per day fee for market attendance. Section 2. Any member of the organization whose dues fall into arrears shall, after proper notification by the Manager, be automatically dropped from membership in the organization unless immediate payment of such dues is made. Section 3. In the event of liquidation or dissolution, all remaining funds in the Association's treasury shall be distributed to members equally after satisfying all debts and other obligations of the Association. Article 8 - Amendments The articles outlined herein may be amended by a two-thirds majority of members present at any regular or special meeting, providing that a notice of such revision or amendment was included in the call of the meeting, or else that the matter had been duly presented at a previous meeting.