BY-LAWS OF THE LAKE HENRY COTTAGERS’ ASSOCIATION, INC.
As Approved by the Membership
June 28, 2014
Name and Objective
Section 1. This Association shall be called and referred to as the Lake Henry Cottagers’ Association, Inc. (LHCA)
a non-profit corporation organized under the Articles of Incorporation dated May 2, 1974 and existing under the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Section 2. The objectives of the Lake Henry Cottagers’ Association, Inc. are to promote the health, safety, welfare and enjoyment of all members utilizing the waters and shoreline of Lake Henry by improving, promoting and protecting Lake Henry for the beneficial use and enjoyment of its members and guests, and to discourage and preclude any detrimental use of the Lake through commercial exploitation of its waters and shoreline.
Section 1. The government of the LHCA shall be vested in the Board of Directors consisting of the elected Officers, elected Directors and Lifetime Board Members. Each member of the Board shall be a member in good standing of the Association and elected or appointed as provided in the By-Laws.
Section 1. Membership in the LHCA shall consist of all persons holding a valid certificate of membership.
Membership eligibility is confined to those persons and their respective spouse owning property that has deeded rights of easement to access the waters of Lake Henry, or from prior developers written agreements granting a license to access Lake Henry, and those property owners that have applied for membership based on their lakefront eligibility and/or plot designated Lake access rights.
When the certificate of membership is held by an entity such as a partnership, limited liability company, trust, etc., the person or party authorized to act for the entity must provide the LHCA with a copy of the by-laws, partnership agreement or trust agreement that authorizes that person or party to act on behalf of said entity.
Section 2. Membership shall be by cottage, residence or property owned, with all persons or entities owning said property being considered members provided, however, that all members from a single property collectively pay one set of dues or assessment for each property owned and have one vote per issue at any meeting of the general membership.
Section 3. The membership of the LHCA shall meet at least annually at a place to be designated by the President or in his/her absence by the Secretary, normally on the last Saturday of June.
Section 4. Members in good standing shall have the right to vote at said meetings by written proxy, provided, however, that a representative of the property so voting shall have signed the said proxy.
Section 5. A quorum at any meeting of the LHCA shall consist of representation from 25% of the membership of the LHCA in good standing.
Section 6. Annual dues shall be set in advance at a rate to be determined at the Annual meeting of the LHCA. Dues not paid by August 1 will have a service charge determined by the membership. Any fees, assessments or annual dues not paid within the grace period shall be deemed delinquent and a monetary lien shall be filed, at the Board’s discretion, on the delinquent member’s real estate.
Section 7. An initiation fee as a prerequisite of membership in the LHCA shall be set at a value equal to the then current LHCA dues for a two year period or as set by the Board of Directors and approved by the membership at the Annual Meeting.
Section 8. Pursuant to the adoption of a policy by the Board of Directors and concerns of environmental & ecological impact; a moratorium is hereby placed on all new memberships from applicants effective July 1, 2010. In furtherance of the environmental & ecological policy, any new applications for new memberships into the LHCA shall include descriptions of any and all uses and proposed uses of any developed and undeveloped land so that an appropriate environmental & ecological impact study can be completed and its results evaluated for acceptability.
This moratorium is not applicable to the transfer of existing memberships for associated properties with membership rights to Lake Henry.
Section 1. The Board of Directors of the LHCA shall convene at the call of the President normally in the Spring, Summer, and Fall, plus at the Annual Membership meeting. However, upon the written petition of any three members of the Board, the Secretary shall issue the call for a meeting in the name of the President. Any such call shall be in writing at least three days prior to the time designated for such meeting. Attendance by Directors is expected at all such meetings, and no Director shall miss more than two meetings during his or her term without justifiable reasons as determined by the President or those members calling the meeting.
Section 2. The President, or any officer of the LHCA, shall preside at all meetings of the Board of Directors.
Section 3. Said meetings shall be at a place or places designated by the person calling the meeting.
Section 4. The Board of Directors shall be elected by majority at the annual meeting of the LHCA for a term of three years. Each year there will be three board members elected for a new three year term.
Section 5. Lifetime Board Members will be nominated by the Board of Directors for valued years of service to the LHCA. Two permanent Lifetime Members will represent the other two lake bottom owners of Lake Henry and its surrounding area.
Nominated Lifetime Board Members will be presented to the general membership by the Board of Directors for their approval at a general membership meeting.
Section 6. Any Board Member leaving the Board shall have another LHCA member appointed by the President to fill his/her term until the next general membership meeting, at which time a member would be elected to fulfill the unexpired term.
Section 7. Any Director may be removed for cause by a 2/3 vote by the Board of Directors.
Section 8. The maximal amount of money that may be obligated by the Board of Directors, without the consent of the general membership, is $ 7,500.00 except in emergency situations, when the Board of Directors would not be restricted.
Section 1. The President shall be the chief executive of the LHCA, and shall preside at all meetings of the LHCA and the Board of Directors. He/She shall be a voting member of the Board of Directors and a member ex-officio of all committees. The term of the President will be two years.
Section 1a. The Past President will remain on the Board of Directors for two years after leaving office.
Section 2. The President-Elect shall act in the absence of the President. In the event of death, resignation or disability of the President, he/she shall succeed to the said office until the next annual meeting. He/She shall be a voting member of the Board of Directors and an ex-officio of all committees. The President-Elect will assume the
Presidency of the Association two years after taking this office. The office of the President will not be open to nominations, as the President-Elect will always assume the Presidency.
Section 3. The Vice-President shall act in the absence of the President and the President-Elect and will be the third person in the succession to the Presidency. He/She shall be a voting member of the Board of Directors. It is assumed that the Vice-President is willing to proceed on to the President-Elect position, if nominated and elected by the general membership. The term of the Vice-President will be two years.
Section 4. The Secretary will be an officer with full voting rights on the Board of Directors. He/She shall be the fourth person in succession to the Presidency and it is assumed the Secretary is willing to proceed on to the Vice Presidency, if nominated and elected by the general membership. He/She will work with the President to insure all committees are fully operational and will act as an ex-officio of all committees. The term of the Secretary shall be two years.
Section 5. The Recording Secretary shall have all the powers and duties normally associated with said office. He/She shall be a voting member of the Board of Directors. The term of the Recording Secretary will be two years. The Recording Secretary will not be asked to move through the chairs.
Section 6. The Treasurer shall have all the powers and duties normally associated with said office. He/She shall be an officer and a voting member of the Board of Directors. He/She shall be bonded at the expense of the LHCA in the amount determined by the Board of Directors. He/She shall dispense the LHCA funds without a counter signature but a monthly accounting to the President of all income and expenses will be issued. The funds shall be deposited in a bank insured by the F.D.I.C.
Annually the Treasurer shall arrange to have an internal audit prepared for a spring Board of Directors meeting and shall present the audit to the general membership in June. The Treasurer shall have the option of moving through the chairs of office or standing for re-election after serving the two-year term.
Section 7. Officers shall be elected bi-annually at the General Membership Meeting of the LHCA for a term of two years. Three members of the Board of Directors shall be elected annually to a term of three years.
Section 8. Any officer may be removed for cause by a 2/3 vote of the Board of Directors.
These By-Laws may be amended at any regular or special meeting of the LHCA by majority vote, provided however, that at least ten days prior to such meeting, written notice of the Amendment to be considered at such meeting shall be given to each member.
Responsibilities and Regulations
This article is devoted to the rules and regulations which the LHCA has evolved over its history, to maintain order on the Lake and the surrounding properties
Section 1. Any rule passed by the Board must be brought before the general membership and passed as an amendment to these By-Laws to be binding on all members.
Section 2. Ice fishing shall be limited to members in good standing. Ice fishing, snowmobiling and other seasonal activities on the lake are at your own risk and should proceed with caution. Cottagers are responsible to ensure that all users and guests are fully aware of potential hazards. Neither the LHCA nor individual cottagers are liable for accidents on the lake; use of the lake is at your own risk.
Section 3. No animals, livestock or poultry of any kind shall be raised, bred or kept on any lot, except that dogs, cats or other household pets may be kept, provided that they are not kept, bred or maintained for commercial purpose. All owners shall be responsible for control of their pets to prevent the disturbance of others.
Section 4. No structure of a temporary nature - trailer, basement, tent, shack, garage, barn or other out-building shall be used on any lot as a temporary or permanent residence.
Section 5. No lot shall be used or maintained as a dumping ground for rubbish. No automobile, trailer or other vehicle, not bearing a current license and inspection, unless housed in a garage, may be kept on premises or any road or street contingent thereto. Trash, garbage or other waste shall be kept in sanitary containers and regularly removed from the premises.
Section 6. No live tree, measuring in excess of five inches in diameter on the stump (one foot from the ground) shall be cut from the premises without written approval of the Board of Directors.
Section 7. Any building erected shall be for residential use only. It shall not-be used for any purpose of any trade, manufacture or business of any description, or as a school, hospital or other charitable institution of any kind whatsoever, nor as a hotel, camp, colony, tourist camp or place of resort and shall be used for dwelling purposes only. This clause, however, shall not restrict the owner thereof from renting for residential purposes the premises which the owner occupies and is so equipped for his personal occupancy, but to restrict the owner from erecting residential structures for rental purposes only.
Section 8. BOATING: All boats on the Lake must abide by all Pennsylvania State Boat Regulations. No motors, except electric, shall be used after midnight or before dawn.
Section 9. All members of the LHCA are responsible for their guests, who must abide by the rules of the LHCA. Any infractions of the rules by a guest, the member will be held fully responsible and subject to penalties and/or fines.
Section 10. SHARING THE COST OF MAINTENANCE AND IMPROVEMENT TO LAKE HENRY: The Lake bottom is owned by the Lake Henry Cottagers’ Association, Inc. and two other lake bottom parties, who are members of the LHCA. Therefore, there are some expenses that should rightfully be shared by all lake bottom owners of the lake. Such projects are authorized by the Board of Directors and are paid for by the LHCA. These projects may result in an allocation of the cost among the various owners of the lake including members of the LHCA.
All private roads will be maintained by the lot owners using those roads.
Section 11. Activities that create a potential fire hazard to other cottagers’ houses and/or to the surrounding forest, such as wind borne sky lanterns containing a lit candle/flammable fuel cell, or any uncontrolled open flame are prohibited.
Section 12. Use of devices, chemical and other agents to control aquatic vegetation is prohibited without express approval of the LHCA Board. Failure to comply with requirement is grounds for a fine, to be levied by the LHCA, or revocation of LHCA membership and privileges.
Complaints, Penalties and Fines
Section 1. Complaints. All complaints against any member of the LHCA for any infraction of the rules, regulations or by-laws, either by a member, his family or guest, shall be reported in writing, signed by the person making the complaint, and sent or given to any member of the Board of Directors.
Section 2. Grievance Committee. The grievance committee will be made up of members of the Board of Directors and will have a chairman appointed by the President.
Section 3. Review of the Complaint. The Grievance committee will review the complaint within 20 days and, if necessary, will advise the parties to appear before the Board of Directors, who will hear the evidence and proof of infraction.
Section 4. Judgment of the complaint. The Board of Directors, after hearing the parties will issue a judgment in keeping with the offense. The member(s) found guilty, by a majority vote, may be suspended from the LHCA and the privileges thereof, and/or be issued a fine as shown below:
1st offense: Warning and/or $100.00 fine.
2nd offense: Three month suspension and/or $200.00 fine.
3rd offense: One year suspension and/or $500.00 fine, and must appear before the Board of Directors to regain membership.
The Board of Directors will increase any fine for a violation to the full cost of remediation.
Any fine or assessment not paid will be placed as a lien on the member’s cottage.
Standing Committees and Ad-Hoc Committees
1. Dam Committee – To take responsibility for all aspects of the lake dam, including, but not be limited to the yearly inspection and clean-up.
2. Ecology Committee - To monitor and promote the water quality of the Lake and evaluate the soil, waste disposal and any other conditions affecting this resource.
3. Grievance Committee - To take care of all complaints, Penalties and fines as outlined in ARTICLE VIII of the By-Laws of this Association.
4. Property/Protective Shoreline/Right-of-Ways/Amenities Committee - To identify and address issues raised by the membership relating to the property owned by the LHCA. It is the local cottagers who are responsible for the upkeep of the right-of-ways and amenities that benefit their properties.
5. Finance Committee- At the direction of the President, the finance committee shall assist the Treasurer in his/her duties or on such special projects as the President or Treasurer may suggest from time to time.
1. Nominating Committee - At the direction of the President the nominating committee shall be appointed and shall consist of three members of the Board of Directors.
2. Census/Membership Committee - To establish that everyone using the Lake is a member and that they have a copy of the By-Laws.
3. Social/Newsletter/Community Liaison – The Social/Newsletter/Community Liaison shall consist of at least one member of the Board, who shall be designated chair by the President, and such members in good standing with an interest in encouraging beneficial fellowship and information exchange among the membership, local governments and local service organizations.
All elected Officers and Directors, except the Treasurer and Recording Secretary, shall serve on at least one Standing or Ad-Hoc committee. This shall not prevent the Treasurer or Recording Secretary, or permanent Directors, from so serving. Following the Annual Meeting, the Recording Secretary shall prepare a list of committee membership for that year.