Statutes

STATUTES

Adopted 24 June 2016

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1. DEFINITIONS

In these statutes:
a) the ‘League’ and ‘EBL’ mean the European Bridge League;
b) ‘WBF’ means the World Bridge Federation;
c) ‘Zone 1’ means the geographical area (principally but not exclusively the Continent of Europe) designated by the WBF to that effect;
d) ‘IOC’ means the International Olympic Committee;
e) ‘NBO’ means any National Bridge Federation or Organisation within Zone 1 which is a member of the League;
f) ‘Bridge’ means the sport of Duplicate Contract Bridge;
g) ‘The President’ means the President of the EBL;
h) ‘four years’ means the period between one Ordinary General Assembly at which scheduled elections take place and the Ordinary General Assembly held in the fourth calendar year thereafter;
i) ‘By‐Laws’ means the By‐laws of the EBL as duly adopted;
j) ‘Statutes’ means these statutes of the EBL as duly adopted.

2. NAME AND ORGANISATION

a) The name of the organisation governed by these statutes is the European Bridge League (‘EBL’)
b) The EBL is a non‐profit organization of a civil nature incorporated as an Association within the meaning of Article 60 and following of the Swiss Civil Code.
c) Its resources shall be applied exclusively in furtherance of its beneficent purposes; and no part of its resources or earnings shall accrue to the benefit of any private person.
d) The EBL is “Zone 1”, one of the Zonal Conferences referred to in the Constitution and By‐Laws of the WBF, and has vested in it the rights therein ascribed.
e) The official language of the EBL is English.

3. AIMS OF THE EBL

The objects of the EBL are to:
a) Promote bridge in Europe and Zone 1;
b) Govern Bridge in Europe and Zone 1 in conjunction with NBOs;
c) Encourage countries in Europe to form National Bridge Organisations and for such organisations to become members of the EBL;
d) Foster friendly relations between NBOs;
e) Devise, regulate and conduct the correct running of competitions to award international or European championship titles;
f) Conduct meetings, workshops and seminars to prepare suitable persons to conduct bridge competitions;
g) Co‐operate and establish friendly relations with bridge associations of other countries outside Europe recognized by the WBF and with zonal Bridge Organizations of the WBF governing such countries;
h) Co‐operate with and assist in the promotion of the objects of the WBF;
i) Co‐operate with and assist in the promotion of the objects of the IOC;
j) Encourage and assist NBOs in promoting bridge in schools, universities and other educational establishments and youth organizations;
k) Dedicate its efforts to maintaining the highest possible standards of ethics and fair play;
l) Seek to prevent the taking of illicit drugs and other illegal substances.

4. COMPOSITION AND MEMBERSHIP.

a) The EBL is composed of non‐profit NBOs within Zone 1, which are affiliated and recognized as the controlling body for bridge in their respective countries, and which comply with the requirements as to the admission and continuing membership as set out in the By‐laws.
b) The EBL only recognizes one NBO per country.
c) The EBL forbids any racial, religious or political discrimination or any violation of Human Rights. In all NBO activities, the organisations and their members must respect non‐discrimination.

5. GOVERNMENT

a) Government of the EBL is vested in the General Assembly, the President and the Executive Committee whose respective powers and responsibilities are set out in these Statutes and the By‐laws.
b) The registered office of the EBL shall be in Switzerland and fiscal reporting shall be made to the appropriate authorities in accordance with Swiss regulations.

6. THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY

The General Assembly is the highest governing body of the EBL.
Each NBO in good standing with the EBL is entitled to have one delegate present and vote at the General Assembly
Other persons (as provided in the By‐laws) are entitled to be present and speak at the General Assembly (but not vote).
General Assemblies are of an Ordinary and Extraordinary type.
Notice of General Assembly (both Ordinary and Extraordinary) and the conduct of business at the General Assembly are governed by the By‐laws.

6.1 Entitlement of Votes
The entitlement of NBOs to votes at a General Assembly is determined by a combination of individual membership (as defined in the By‐laws) and participation in EBL events:

Each NBO is entitled up to a maximum of 6 votes depending upon the following scale:

Average number of individuals (but see below*) who are registered members Number of votes**
0 – 500 1
501 – 2500 2
2501 ‐ 10,000 3
10,001 ‐ 25,000 4
25,001 ‐ 60,000 5
60,001 or more 6

 

* Registered members who, in accordance with the By‐laws, do not pay membership dues are excluded from the total of NBO registered members

**An NBO which has participated in any three of the EBL’s main team events (Open Teams, Women Teams, Senior Teams and Youth Teams) during the previous two years – one extra vote

6.2 The Ordinary General Assembly.
The Ordinary General Assembly is held every two years in the even numbered years.
In the even numbered years not clashing with the IOC Summer Olympic Games (starting with the year 2018) the business of the Ordinary General Assembly will include the election of the EBL President and all the members of the EBL Executive Committee.

At an Ordinary General Assembly, Ordinary Business must include:

a) approving the audited Financial Statements for the two years following the last Ordinary General Assembly and consideration of the Auditors’ report;
b) examining the budget for the next two years;
c) fixing membership dues and other fees;
d) hearing and approving the report of the EBL President;
e) ratification of the admission to membership of new NBOs;
f) determining the appeal of any NBO expelled from membership by the Executive Committee;
g) electing the EBL President at the ordinary General Assembly held in 2018 and every four years thereafter;
h) electing the 12 members of the Executive Committee, such election to take place immediately following the election of the President, (every four years at the same Ordinary General Assembly as the EBL President is elected);
i) Bestowing the titles of President Emeritus, Honorary President, Honorary Vice‐President or Honorary Member on any individual or organization having contributed outstandingly to the development of European bridge or having served European bridge with distinction;
j) Such other business as is notified in the Notice of Assembly or which (without notice) is permitted by the President.

6.3 Extraordinary General Assembly
a) An Extraordinary General Assembly is required:

i. To amend the Statutes;
ii. To deal with the election of a new EBL President and Executive Committee for any of the reasons contemplated in By‐law F3;
iii. To pronounce the dissolution of the EBL.

b) An Extraordinary General Assembly may be convoked by the Executive Committee or by NBOs representing not less than one third plus one of the total NBO voting power.
c) An Extraordinary General Assembly must be called in the following cases:

i. under By‐law F3
ii. when half plus one of the NBOs with the right to vote so request in writing addressed to the Administrative Office of the EBL
iii. when half plus one of the Executive Committee so request

d) For any of 6.3 (a), 6.3 (b), 6.3 (c), a formal agenda must be sent to all NBOs with the notice of convocation.
e) Other agenda items may be decided at the Extraordinary General Assembly, but business at an Extraordinary General Assembly shall be limited to what is notified in the Notice of that Assembly.
f) An Extraordinary General Assembly may be convoked together with an Ordinary General Assembly but separate notices and separate agendas must be sent to all NBOs.

6.4 Quorum
The quorum for a General Assembly to be valid is:
a) in the case of a General Assembly without elections, the presence of the duly appointed delegates of one half plus one of the NBOs with a right to vote;
b) in the case of a General Assembly with elections, the presence of the duly appointed delegates of one half plus one of the NBOs representing at least one half plus one of the total votes available to be cast;
c) in the case of modifications or amendments to the statutes, the presence of the duly appointed delegates of one half plus one of the NBOs representing at least two thirds of the votes available to be cast;
d) in the case of the dissolution of the EBL, the presence of the duly appointed delegates of four fifths of the NBOs representing at least four fifths of the votes available to be cast.

7. THE EBL PRESIDENT

a) The EBL President chairs the General Assemblies, the Executive Committee and Management Committee meetings. He/she represents the EBL in all legal activities and authorises expenditure within the budget.
b) He/she represents the EBL in all acts of civil life before the IOC and the WBF and before the Courts of Justice. The EBL may be represented, should the President not be available, by a representative empowered by the Executive Committee and acting on its behalf.
c) The EBL President convokes the Ordinary and Extraordinary General Assemblies, except as specified in 7(i) below.
d) The President supervises the regular functioning of the EBL and in exceptional and extremely urgent cases may take decisions on behalf of the Executive Committee on condition that these decisions be ratified at the next meeting of the Executive Committee.
e) The President signs or countersigns all minutes, rulings, certificates and other legal instruments of the EBL as authorised by the General Assembly and Executive Committee.
f) The President presents to the General Assembly a report on the EBL activities; he/she is responsible for the management of the EBL and its activities, and performs all such other duties as are incidental to their office or properly required of them by the Executive Committee.
g) The President shall be elected by absolute majority of the votes cast by secret ballot at the General Assembly and shall serve for a term of four years, with a maximum of three consecutive terms.
h) The election of the President is governed by the By‐laws.
i) Should the position of President become vacant, due to any reason whatsoever, the functions of the President will be provisionally fulfilled by the first Vice‐President. At the next General Assembly a new President must be elected whose term will be for the remainder of the four year term of his predecessor.

8. THE EXECUTIVE AND MANAGEMENT COMMITTEES

The functions of the Officers, and the conduct of meetings and business of the Executive Committee and Management Committee are set out in the By‐laws.

8.1 Executive Committee
a) All executive and administrative powers relevant to the effective supervision and administration of the affairs and activities of the EBL (consistent with the EBL’s statutes) are vested in the Executive Committee.
b) The Executive Committee consists of the EBL President plus 12 members. The members are elected by secret ballot by the General Assembly for a four year term. The election of the twelve members of the Executive Committee takes place at the same General Assembly which elects the EBL President and immediately after the election of the EBL President.
c) Immediately after its election, at its first meeting, the Executive Committee will elect from amongst its members, on the proposal of the President, a first Vice President, a second Vice President, the Secretary and the Treasurer.

8.2 Complementary Regulations
The Executive Committee shall issue the necessary Regulations, including the Rules for the Enforcement or Complement to the Statutes, By‐Laws (in accordance with article 9, and provided the General Assembly does not itself adopt the By‐laws, in which case the Executive Committee can amend the By‐laws pursuant to article 9.1), Rules of Procedure, Ethics Code, Disciplinary Code, Code of conduct with rules of procedure and sanctions, Anti‐Doping Regulations in accordance with the World Anti‐Doping Code, and any other regulations deemed necessary for the effective administration of European bridge.

8.3 Management Committee
a) Between meetings of the Executive Committee, current business of the EBL shall be conducted by a Management Committee.
b) The Management Committee is composed of the EBL President, the EBL First Vice President, the EBL Second Vice‐President, the Secretary and the Treasurer plus two other members appointed, on the proposal of the EBL President, by the Executive Committee and chosen from among its members.

9. STATUTES AND BY‐LAWS

a) The Statutes of the EBL are the final and paramount authority and nothing contained in any Regulations shall operate as to circumvent or lessen the meaning or scope of the Statutes.
b) The General Assembly can itself adopt By‐laws for the regulation and management of the affairs of the EBL, and to complement the Statutes. In any case the Statutes shall prevail.
9.1 Amendments:
a) These Statutes or any part thereof may be amended only at a properly constituted Extraordinary General Assembly, at which a quorum is present (see Statutes 6.4 c), by the affirmative vote of two thirds of votes cast.
b) The By‐laws or any part thereof may be amended

(i) by the Executive Committee by the affirmative vote of two thirds of all its members, provided the effective date of the Amendment fixed by the Executive Committee shall not be earlier than three months after electronic mailing of written notice and full text of the Amendment to each NBO and provided further that if NBOs who between them muster a majority of votes available at General Assembly make electronic mailing objection to the Amendment to the President before the effective date fixed by the Executive Committee, the Amendment shall be null and void.
Or
(ii) at any duly constituted Extraordinary General Assembly, at which a quorum is present (see Statutes 6.4 c), by the affirmative vote of two thirds of votes cast.

10. DISSOLUTION

a) The dissolution of the EBL may only be decided upon by an Extraordinary General Assembly convened especially for this purpose.
b) In the case of dissolution of the EBL, the Extraordinary General Assembly will appoint a liquidator.
c) The net assets of the EBL will be donated to one or more national or international organizations having aims similar to those of the EBL.