TECH MODEL RAILROAD CLUB
Article 1. Name
The name of this organization shall be the Tech Model Railroad Club
of M.I.T., hereinafter referred to as "the Club." The Club, in its
general business meetings, shall be referred to as the Assembly.
Article 2. Purpose
The purpose of the Club shall be to increase the awareness of model railroading
among M.I.T. students and other members of the M.I.T. community. The Club
shall organize and administer facilities to promote the hobby and encourage
the participation of the M.I.T. community.
Article 3. Membership
Section A. About the Memberships
1) Regular membership
All M.I.T. students, personnel, and long-term contractors.
Use of Club facilities subject to all statutes and rules.
Voting and holding a Club office.
Possession of a key to the Clubroom, subject to qualifications prescribed
in the By-Laws and such restrictions as may be imposed by M.I.T.
2) Associate membership
All persons not eligible for Regular membership who were at one time
Regular or Associate members, and immediate relatives of Regular members,
except that no person under sixteen years of age shall be eligible unless
such person was at one time a Regular member. Membership is subject to
admission as described in Section C below, and subject to subsequent renewal
as described in Section D below.
Use of Club facilities subject to all statutes and rules.
Voting and holding appointed office, except Governor or Treasurer.
Possession of a key to the Clubroom if the person received a key while
a regular member and subject to any restrictions as may be imposed by
3) Guest membership
Guest membership is divided into three sub-categories.
A. Regular Guest membership
All persons over sixteen years of age subject to admission
as described in Section C below, and subject to subsequent renewal
as described in Section D below.
a. Use of Club facilities subject to all statutes and rules.
b. Voting, except on amendments to the Constitution and By-Laws, and
holding appointed office, except Governor or Treasurer.
B. Junior Guest membership
All persons less than sixteen years of age, subject to admission as
described in Section C below and subject to subsequent renewal as described
in Section D below.
Use of Club facilities subject to all statutes and rules, and under
the supervision of a Regular, Associate, or Regular Guest member.
4) Honorary membership
All persons whom the Club wishes to recognize for outstanding service
to the Club or to the hobby as a whole.
Membership terminates during the second regular meeting following loss
of eligibility. Upon ceasing to be a Regular or Associate member, a person
shall surrender his key to the Clubroom. Upon ceasing to be a dues paying
member, a person shall surrender all keys he may possess to Club-administered
Admission of persons who are not M.I.T. students or M.I.T. personnel.
1) Associate membership
A person may be admitted as an Associate member after nomination by a Regular
member at a regular meeting of the Assembly, and approval by one-half the
Assembly or three-fourths of the voting, whichever is greater. Vote shall
be by secret ballot.
3) Regular Guest membership
Regular Guest membership is attained after nomination by a Governor
at a regular meeting of the Assembly and approval by one-half the Assembly
or three-fourths of those voting, whichever is greater.
4) Junior Guest membership
Junior Guest membership is attained after nomination by a Governor at
a regular meeting of the Assembly and approval by one-half the Assembly
or three-fourths of those voting, whichever is greater.
The membership of all persons whose membership was attained through vote
of the Assembly shall be subject to annual renewal at the first or second
regular meeting of the Assembly during the spring term. A separate vote
shall be taken for each individual. Such vote shall be by secret ballot,
and shall require approval of one-half the Assembly or three-fourths of
those voting, whichever is greater.
All members, including officers, concent to being photographed and/or video-recorded
and their release, publication, or reproduction to be used for news, promotional
purposes, and inclusion on web sites. The members shall release TMRC and MIT from
any liability connected with the publication of interviews, photographs, computer
images, and video recordings.
The club shall be sensitive to what is considered decent portrayal and shall strive
to protect the decency and dignity of those photographed or video-recorded.
However all inviduals maintain the right to have their photos or videos removed upon request.
Article 4. Change of Government
A Change of Government is called for by a two-thirds vote of the Assembly;
by a majority of the officers posting notice thereof; automatically at
12:01 A.M. October 31 and April 1; and when there are no Governors. Election
for Governors shall occur at the same meeting during which this Constitution
At the first meeting called to order following a call for a Change of
Government by at least six days, it shall be moved, either from the floor
or automatically, that: "Resolve that the present Government be sustained."
The Motion to Sustain passes if two-thirds of those voting vote in favor.
Otherwise an election for Governors shall immediately be held.
Nominations for Governors shall be verbal and from the floor. At least
three persons shall be nominated. Each nominee shall be an M.I.T. student,
and a member qualified to possess a key to the Clubroom, as defined in
the By-Laws. Election shall be by secret ballot. The top two candidates
become Governors. If first place is clear, but there is a tie for second,
the top runner becomes one Governor, and another ballot is held on the
remaining candidates: the top runner there becomes the other Governor.
In all other ties the bottom runner is eliminated and another ballot is
taken if a choice remains. (Interpretation by the Chair 11-6-65: Vote for
two candidates on the ballot.)
The Governors assume all their power, including presiding, immediately
at the close of their election. When the two Governors have been elected,
they must, in a report to the Assembly at the following meeting, propose
their Government, describing the title, duties, and name of each of the
proposed officeholders. The report must bear the signatures of all the
proposed officers. The Government must also meet the specifications of
Article 5 below. At that meeting the Assembly must vote on the motion:
"Resolve, that the Club accept the Government proposed by governors ---
and ---." If this Motion to Accept is carried, the Government takes power
at the adjournment of the meeting. If the vote fails, or a thoroughly valid
report is not given, the Assembly must at that time elect a new pair of
Governors, who must not have been Governors together previously during
the same Change of Government. However, the Governors may once appeal for
a secret ballot to give them one additional month to prepare a Government.
Should a Governor cease to satisfy the conditions for his nomination, he
ceases to be a Governor. Should a Governor resign or become ineligible,
this fact shall be reported to the Assembly by himself or the other Governor,
and at the regular meeting following said notice a replacement shall be
elected by secret ballot.
Article 5. Characteristics of a Government
A Government shall have at least five officers, and at least four officers
shall not be Governors. There shall be no more than thirteen officers.
No officer shall have, in whole or in part, as many as one-third of the
numbered duties listed below. Officers may delegate well-defined portions
of their duties to agreeable single agents, but responsibility to the Club
remains in the Officer.
The following duties shall be allotted to the officers. A duty shall either
be given to one of the officers, or divided with parts to one or more officers
and the remainder to another. The same power shall not be shared among
two or more officers. The duties of B) below shall not be subdivided, and
the person bearing said duties shall have the title "Treasurer".
The duties under C) below shall not be subdivided and shall only be
carried out by the Governor or Treasurer. Additional
duties may be assigned; and officers may be named without duties.
1. Storage Space
a. Allotment of storage space.
b. Establishment of rents.
c. Administration of all locks and keys internal to the clubroom.
MIT provided keys, treasury keys, and Coke machine keys shall be
administered as per sections B) and C) below.
a. Qualification of operators.
b. Assignment of posts at operating sessions.
c. Regulating use of the layout.
3. Rolling Stock and Track Standards
a. Establishing standards for trackwork, clearances, and rolling stock.
b. Checking equipment against standards.
4. Public Relations
a. Maintaining liaison with the Club's Faculty advisor and other Institute
b. Handling publicity, and representing the Club to the general public.
a. Keeping all publications acquired by the Club in good condition,
organized for ready reference.
b. Recommending the acquisition of publications of usefulness to the
c. Promulgating, at statutory intervals, a newsletter.
a. Taking full and correct minutes at all meetings of the Assembly.
b. Typing such minutes, posting the most recent, and keeping in order
the minutes of all meetings past.
c. Taking and keeping such minutes of officers' meetings as shall be
d. Notifying members of affairs of the Club, as directed by this
Constitution or by the Assembly.
e. Updating, once a term, a digest of current motions in force, for
use as a reference.
1. Account Administation
a. Maintaining the financial records of the Club, keeping track of all
the Club's financial transactions, and having personal responsibility for
all funds of the Club.
b. Accepting and disbursing all moneys from the Club funds, except as
otherwise provided herein.
c. Define, at the beggining of each term, the quantity "1/400 of current
tuition, or 1% of Club Savings, whichever is lower" as the "maximum
2. Presenting to the Assembly, within the first month of the
fall and spring terms, a budget listing appropriations desired by each
officer, subdivided by his duties.
3. Approving expenditures of up to the "maximum pre-approved
expense" from the Treasury as seen fit.
4. Performing all authorized purchases, and accepting in the
name of the Club all gifts deemed desirable.
C) Administration of Membership and Clubroom Access
1. Administering key-holding qualifications.
a. Keep records of member qualifications for key possession.
b. Assign a Clubroom key when a member meets key holding qualifications,
as defined in the bylaws and if the membership type provides such a
priviledge, following all Institute regulations.
2. Maintain Keys and Records
a. Maintain a complete list of all Clubroom key assignments.
These records are to include name, membership type, and MIT ID
b. Present such records to any member of the MIT administration upon
c. Ensure safe-keeping of all un-assigned Clubroom keys. The keys
shall never be removed from the clubroom, and shall be kept in a
d. Collect any keys of members who lose key-holding priviledges, and
update the records as appropiate.
e. Ensure that key-holding members meet all MIT requirements to hold
Institute owned keys, and report any iregularities to the
3. MIT Administration Contact
a. Shall be the main contact to the MIT Administration in regards to
b. Accepts responsibility for the Clubroom keys provided to the Club.
c. Will answer any requests of the Administration, with regards to
Clubroom keys, within a reasonable time period, never to exceed two
D) Construction and Maintenance
a. Construction and maintenance of all trackage, turnouts, and switch
b. Cutting and insulating block gaps.
c. Providing leads for all track feeders and switch motors at accessible
d. Maintenance of and recommendation for acquisition of tools used primarily
for such work.
2. Signals and Power
a. Construction and maintenance of all electrical apparatus except that
fed directly by current supplied by the Institute and that explicitly relegated
to other duties.
b. Maintenance of and recommendation for acquisition of tools used primarily
for such work.
c. Promulgation of complete and correct circuit diagrams of all equipment
under his supervision.
3. Construction and maintenance of all scenic features of the
layout except the electrical, trackwork, or benchwork features thereof.
4. Construction and maintenance of the trolley line and associated
5. Construction and maintenance of all club rolling stock.
6. Construction and maintenance of all club work and storage
7. Construction and maintenance of all benchwork supporting the
8. Repair of and recommendation for acquisition of club tools
and hardware not delegated to other duties.
9. Cleanliness and general appearance of the Clubroom.
10. MIT Facilities
a. Liaison with the Institute concerning utilities.
b. Maintenance of all utilities feeding the Club.
11. Maintenance of and recommendation for acquisition of club
computer equipment that is not dedicated to specific control functions.
Article 6. Meetings
One Governor shall preside at each meeting of the Assembly. If both are
present they shall decide between themselves who is to preside. If neither
is present the Assembly shall immediately elect a temporary chairman for
The person presiding may vote in all elections for Governor, officers,
membership, and other posts or honors established by the Constitution or
By-Laws. He may vote on the motion to sustain the present Government, on
Amendments to the Constitution or By-Laws, and on motions to frown or smile.
Otherwise he may vote only to resolve a tie, and then not if the vote was
taken by secret ballot.
Quorum at meetings shall be as determined in the By-Laws.
General meetings of the Assembly shall be held throughout the Fall and
Spring terms. These meetings shall be held monthly, the second Saturday
of the month at 8:00pm in the Club room. The meetings shall not require
formal announcement other than as described in Section F. If a meeting
will have a date/time/location other than as described above, the change
must be clearly announced at least a week prior to the meeting, putting
especial emphasis on the change.
When a meeting is to be held at which there is to be a vote (other than
the first vote) on an amendment to the Constitution or By-Laws, or an Election
of Governors, or a Vote to Accept, notice of that meeting and the nature
thereof shall be posted in a prominent location in the Clubroom for a period
of five (5) days before the meeting. When a meeting is to be held at which
there is to be a first vote on an amendment to the Constitution or By-Laws,
the notice period shall be ten (10) days. All announcements must include
the posting date in the format mm/dd/yy.
Notice of the meetings and agendas shall be posted in a specially designated
space of the Club Room. This space shall be used solely for this purpose
and shall not be erased other than to announce the next meeting. The space
must be updated at the end of each meeting to announce the next regularly
scheduled general meeting and must be updated with any business or emergency
Article 7. Replacement of Officers
By a two-thirds vote the Assembly may call for the replacement of an Officer;
the Governors shall decide upon a replacement and report same to the Assembly
at the next meeting. Failing such report the Assembly must choose a replacement
at that meeting.
The Governors may replace any officer by posting notice thereof. At the
next meeting they must report same to the Assembly and the Assembly may
reject, by two-thirds vote, the replacement. Should the report not be given,
or the replacement be rejected, the office then reverts to its prior holder.
The Treasurer holds office until the replacement is accepted by the Assembly;
all other duties are transferred when notice is posted.
The replacement of the holder of any particular office for the second time
in less than two weeks, or the third time in less than two months, or when
any two other replacements have occurred within two weeks, or any change
in the structure of the Government, can only be done upon report of the
Governors and approval of the Assembly, except that a Change of Government
nullifies the applicability to this section of any replacements thereto.
Article 8. Responsibility for the Affairs of the Club
To all officers in meeting is given the power of deliberation on proposed
projects, membership offences, and general Club policy. Each Government
shall hold such a meeting at least once a month except that a Government
formed within the last six days of such a calendar month need not meet
that month. Quorum for such meetings shall be three-fifths of the officers.
During the period between the election of Governors and the approval of
a Government, the affairs of the Club are managed by the Governors, subject
to review and direction by majority vote of the Assembly; except that the
Treasurer shall hold office until his replacement is approved by the Assembly.
During the Summer, authority is delegated as specified in Article 9 below.
At all other times the most recently chosen officers are in charge. Each
officer is responsible for promulgating, in written form, all the rules
he chooses to enforce in the matters over which he has jurisdiction. These
rules may be overruled only by a three-quarters vote of the Assembly, but
all commitments or expenditures of funds over the "maximum pre-approved
expense" (as defined in 5.B.B.1.c) must first be approved
by a governor and the treasurer. Likewise the Assembly must approve any
project that would, in the opinion of either Governor or of one-third of
the officers, substantially change the appearance of the layout or Clubroom
or the mode of operation of the layout. These rules are in any case subject
to the Constitution, By-Laws, and previous overruling votes of the Assembly.
Article 9. The Summer Board
At any of the last three meetings of the Assembly in each spring term,
it shall be moved: "Resolve, that the Club elect a Summer Board with a
budget of --- plus --- percent of the income earned during the previous
administration." Should this motion pass, members who shall be resident
in the Cambridge area during the coming summer are nominated from the floor.
As each is nominated, the Assembly votes on them. A two-thirds vote in
favor of a person elects him to the Summer Board. Also each Governor is
automatically on the Summer Board if he will be in the area. If by the
end of the spring term a Summer Board has been formed with at least three
members, that board takes power upon close of class. The Board may, at
a meeting of which all Board members have been notified in time to attend,
by a majority vote approve projects and expenditures, not to exceed their
budget. Their power ceases at the first regular meeting of the Assembly
in the fall term. Should a proper Board not exist at the close of a spring
term, then a project of expenditure shall be undertaken in the Summer only
as approved by the Assembly during that spring term.
Article 10. Amendments and Interpretation
Section A. Definitions
"The active membership" consists of all regular members plus all associate
"Posting notice" consists of putting a written notice, signed by both
Governors or by a majority of the officers, as appropriate, in the proper
place in the Clubroom. A conspicuous location shall be reserved for such
notices, and another for the most recent minutes.
"A report" by the Governors to the Assembly must be in writing, signed
by both Governors, and presented at the proper time in the meeting.
"The duration of a Change of Government" is from the failure of a Motion
to Sustain until the passage of a Motion to Accept.
Section B. Amendments.
This Constitution may be amended by two-thirds vote of the Assembly at
each of three successive meetings, except that the duties set forth in
Article 5 may be augmented or clarified in the same manner as the By-Laws
Section C. Interpretation.
Any question of the interpretation of this Constitution shall be determined
by the person presiding, subject to a two-thirds overruling vote by the
Article 11.Location of the Official Constitution
The official Constitution and Bylaws of the Club shall reside in the Club's
Athena locker. The files must be in .html format, or that format universally
recognized by the ASA at the time, and must be publicly available over
the WWW. The Constitution shall be named const.html and the By-Laws
bylaws.html. No other versions of the documents shall be official;
any amendments or changes to the constitution or By-Laws shall be effective
as of their posting date and time into the official electronic versions.
An updated hard copy of the Constitution and By-Laws must always be kept
in the club room posted next to the membership list and in a visible and
of the Tech Model Railroad Club of MIT
Tech Model Railroad Club of
MIT Room N52-118
265 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139
+1 617 253-3269