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Fargo Youth Initiative

Boards, Commissions & Committees

Fargo Youth Initiative Bylaws

ARTICLE I: NAME
The name of this organization shall be the Fargo Youth Initiative and shall hereby be known as FYI.

ARTICLE II: INTENT
The intent in preparing and adopting these bylaws is to provide a framework for FYI, its actions and agenda. It is not the intent of the City or the members hereinafter described to create a legal entity of any sort including without limitation, a corporation, nonprofit corporation, limited liability company, partnership nor any other business, public or quasi-public entity.

ARTICLE III: PURPOSE
Section 1. Mission, Vision and Tagline
The mission of FYI is “Empowering the voice and uniting the youth of Fargo through actions and teamwork.”

The vision of FYI is an “Atmosphere where youth have a positive sustainable impact on the community of Fargo.”

The tagline of FYI is Connect. Create. Educate.

Section 2. Specific Functions.
Specific functions of FYI shall include, but are not limited to the following:
a) To serve as a liaison between the City of Fargo and the youth of Fargo.
b) To investigate needs, problems and issues affecting the youth of Fargo.
c) Research issues and make policy or project recommendations to the Fargo City Commission.

ARTICLE IV: MEMBERSHIP & OFFICERS
Section 1. Membership
FYI will consist of:
a) Between 10-20 students representing grades 9-12
1) Students must live in or attend school in Fargo
2) All student members will represent all aspects of the group
b) Between 1-3 adult mentors
1) Adult mentors must live in Fargo

Section 2. Terms
a) Applications are sent out in the spring of the preceding year
b) Applicants can reapply each year if not admitted
c) Members can serve in FYI until graduation without reapplying each year so long as they fulfill their duties and are in good standing with the group
d) If members have 2 unexcused absences they will be given a warning from the co chairs, if members have 4 unexcused absences they will be asked to leave the group

Section 3. Officers
The following roles and responsibilities will be filled, through election, at the last meeting of the year in May. This meeting will follow the acceptance of new members into the group. New and incumbent members will be able to vote for the officers for the next year. All officers will retain their position through the full academic year, but can be removed if a majority of the members determine that it would be beneficial for the group.

a) Co-Chairs Responsibilities
a. There should be two co-chairs appointed in each school year, unless otherwise decided by a majority vote
b. Co-chairs should be upperclassmen with at least one year of experience
c. Co-chairs primary role is to keep the mission and vision at the forefront of all FYI business and remind fellow members of the mission and vision.
d. Co-chairs will schedule meetings, write agendas, coordinate committees, contact advisors, and remind members of FYI and City Commission meetings
e. Co-chairs will rotate as meeting leaders.

b) Secretary Responsibilities
a. The secretary should have at least one year of experience
b. The secretary will take minutes, update the Google Drive, and report past minutes as needed

c) Treasurer Responsibilities
a. The treasurer should have at least one year of experience
b. The treasurer will communicate with advisors to keep track of budget, give budget reports, and advise group on possible uses of surplus

Section 4. Election Procedure
a) Advisers will coordinate elections and tally votes.
b) Positions will be voted on in the order of officers in Section 3.
c) Candidates will have the opportunity to give a short speech about their qualifications and goals
d) Each member will get one vote for each position. The candidate (candidates in the case of co-chairs) with the most votes will be elected.
e) In the case of a tie, the candidate with the fewest votes will be eliminated and a runoff election between the two candidates with the highest number of votes will occur. In the case of an unbreakable tie between two candidates, the adviser will choose the elected officer.

ARTICLE V: MEETINGS & ATTENDANCE
Section 1. Meetings
a) An annual retreat will be held in late summer or fall to orientate the new FYI members & advisers
b) Meetings will be held one Sunday a month at 7:00 p.m. unless otherwise specified
c) There may be additional work group/committee meetings scheduled as needed. These meetings will be considered optional and attendance is not mandatory.

Section 2. Lunch Meetings
a) Lunch meetings will be held once a month
b) FYI members will vote on presenters at the beginning of the year
c) The goal of lunch meetings is to educate FYI members about commissions, organizations, and initiatives in Fargo and to facilitate a discussion between such groups and the youth of Fargo.

ARTICLE VI: COMMITTEES
Section 1. Committee Structure
Committees will be utilized when appropriate. When possible the committees will be given time to work during the full group meetings unless other arrangements are needed.

ARTICLE VII: ROLE OF MENTORS
Section 1. Advisers
a) FYI will have between 3-5 adult mentors to guide the collective work.
b) Mentors will not be voting members of FYI, instead their role is advisory; to facilitate, provide guidance and connections, and assist small groups/committees.
c) Mentors will also assist the officers in choosing next year’s student participants.

ARTICLE VIII: APPLICATION PROCESS
Section 1. Application
An application process will begin in the spring of each year for interested students. The written application will consist of short essay questions and will be scored by the current co-chairs and advisers. They will attempt to be as objective as possible. They will look for these criteria in the applications:
● Teamwork
● Leadership abilities
● Drive/ambition to improve the community
● Responsibility
● Representation: school (e.g. from schools that do not currently have representatives), grade (e.g. freshmen, sophomores)

ARTICLE IX CITY COMMISSION MEETINGS
Section 1. Representatives
There will be at least one FYI representative present at each City Commission meeting whenever possible in order to increase FYI visibility and to provide a youth voice during public forums.

Original bylaws approved May 2013.
Last edit: November 2018