On Sunday 18 October at 7.30pm (Eastlink Badminton Stadium) a Special General Meeting will be held as communicated to all clubs. The purpose of the special general meeting is to decide on Waikato Badminton’s new constitution which, if passed, would take affect at the Annual General Meeting to be held on Sunday 6 December at 7.30pm.

Why is a new constitution being proposed and presented?
WBA’s current constitution is outdated and not in line with the way the association currently operates. The current constitution was written for an association which relied on volunteers to run all aspects of the association. In the past 10 years there have been major changes to the organisation which now employs several staff members including a Chief Executive Officer. Waikato Badminton’s activities to promote, foster, grow and run Badminton in the greater Waikato region have increased so much in the past decade that it would be unthinkable to have all those activities serviced by just volunteers. With the growth in activities, programmes etc. the financial responsibilities of the organisation have also increased dramatically with an annual budget that is now close to half a million dollars. To ensure the organisation is being managed appropriately, WBA’s governance structure (constitution) needs to be aligned with the way it operates already. Failure to do so could potentially have serious consequences for the organisation.

How are these changes reflected in the new constitution?
The main change to the constitution is a shift from a management committee based governance structure to a Board governance structure. As a result the election of officers at the AGM would change from electing management committee members to Board members. A Board has a higher level of accountability and provides more appropriate leadership and direction to the Chief Executive Officer. A Board typically also provides a better opportunity to bring on board people with specific skills to ensure the organisation is well managed from a governance perspective.

Most areas of the new constitution are very similar to the current constitution (e.g. membership, voting structure etc) however it has been written in a more current format using an up to date template as recommended by Sport New Zealand.

Who has written the new constitution and has the WBA consulted with experts in this area?
The new constitution has been written by a lawyer who has an extensive background in Badminton and with previous experience in writing constitutions. The new constitution which is now being proposed is a result of two years of discussions and seeking advise from Badminton New Zealand, Sport Waikato, Sport New Zealand and a lawyer. Our lawyer will be present at the Special General Meeting on Sunday 18 October to answer any questions not yet answered during the workshop meeting on 6 October and/or to clarify any legal terminology used in the constitution.

Waikato Badminton would like to invite all clubs and members to attend both the SGM and the AGM and look forward to seeing you there. A copy of the final version of the new constitution will be forwarded to all members by Friday 9 October at the latest.

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