SWIAF Charter

CHARTER
As Revised Through Amendment No. 13
May 30, 1998


An association of audit representatives from Federal, State, and Local governments is hereby created within the five-state region of Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas, and shall be called the Southwest Intergovernmental Audit Forum.  The primary purpose of the association is to promote communication, coordination, and cooperation among the members’ audit agencies in order to facilitate the effectiveness, efficiency, and usefulness of audits.

MEMBERSHIP

Members

The head of each Federal, State, and Local organization with the principal responsibility for audits of governmental organizations, programs, activities, and functions shall be qualified for membership.  Each member shall be permitted to designate and empower an alternate to act on his behalf whenever the member is unable to attend regularly scheduled or called Forum meetings.  Membership additions and deletions shall be made by majority vote of the membership pursuant to a recommendation by the Executive Committee.

Restoration of suspended member rights shall be made by majority vote of the membership, pursuant to a recommendation by the Executive Committee.

Associate Members

Associate Memberships are available for representatives of State Department audit groups, each State Society of Certified Public Accountants, and public accounting firms.

One Associate Membership is available to the head of each State Departmental audit group with a major post audit function.  One Associate Membership is available to each State Society of Certified Public Accountants within the Forum’s five-state jurisdiction.   Membership may be conferred to the individual State Society member who is either the chairman or member of the State Society’s committee associated with governmental affairs, pursuant to a State Society recommendation.

One Associate Membership shall be available to the partner or individual practitioner in any firm or branch of firm of public accountants having an interest in governmental auditing.  The terms of membership shall be limited to two years, but may be renewed upon consideration of applications received.

Associate Members are accorded all rights and privileges of member except that they shall not be permitted to vote.  The Associate Membership shall be awarded and withdrawn by majority vote of the membership, pursuant to a recommendation by the Executive Committee.

Honorary Members

Honorary Membership may be awarded by majority vote of the membership, pursuant to a recommendation by the Executive Committee.  However, Honorary Members shall not be accorded Member or Associate Member rights and privileges by virtue of the Honorary Membership Award.

AWARDS

Awards for outstanding contributions to the accomplishment of Forum purposes may be conferred by majority vote of the membership, pursuant to a recommendation by the Executive Committee.  Necessary funds for approved awards may be recovered through regularly scheduled meetings’ registration fees.

OBJECTIVES

The objectives of the Forum are:

1.  To provide a forum where audit executives from Federal, State, and Local government can exchange views and solve common problems.

2.  To promote the acceptance, interpretation, and implementation of standards for audits of government organization, programs, activities and functions and to contribute toward their improvement.

3.  To encourage coordination and cooperation among member organizations in the planning and performance of audits and the distribution of audit reports.

4.  To encourage professional development.

OFFICERS

The Chairperson shall be the principal executive officer of the Forum and shall preside over all meetings.  The Chairperson shall appoint an Executive Director who shall serve as an ex officio member assisting the Chairperson by providing necessary administrative support.

The Chairperson and Vice Chairperson shall be elected by majority vote of the membership in attendance at a regularly scheduled Forum meeting for a term of two calendar years.   In the absence of the Chairperson, the Vice Chairperson shall perform the duties of the Chairperson.  Election shall be held at the last regularly scheduled Forum meeting of the calendar year immediately preceding expiration of the two-year term.   If the Vice Chairperson cannot complete his term, a new Vice Chairperson shall, with the advice and consent of the Forum members, be appointed by the Executive Committee to serve the balance of the term.

MEETINGS

Regularly scheduled Forum meetings shall be held no less than two times annually.   Extraordinary and other meetings of the Forum may be called by the Chairperson and/or the Executive Committee to consider matters affecting a significant segment of the membership where time is of the essence and satisfactory action cannot be attained otherwise, or at such time and place that the Chairperson and/or the Executive Committee deem it to be within the best interest of the Forum and/or its members to call such a meeting.

VOTING

All members or designated alternates shall have the right to vote on Forum matters when in attendance at Forum meetings.  If a member or designated alternate is not in attendance at a Forum meeting, the members or designated alternates shall have the right to authorize another member or designated alternate to vote on his or her behalf, provided the authorization is (1) given in writing, and (2) presented to the Executive Committee prior to the vote.

The State Departmental Auditors shall have the right to one vote for each State and must select the voting member and notify the Forum Chairman every two years.  If the selected voting member is not in attendance at the Forum meeting, the selected voting member may authorize another member or designated alternate to vote on his or her behalf, provided the authorization is (1) given in writing, and (2) presented to the Executive Committee prior to the vote.

The quorum necessary to transact official business is the lesser of ten members; or one-third of the membership, excluding Associate Members.  Matters voted on by the membership shall be approved by the majority of those voting, except in the case of proposed charter amendments which is governed under a separate provision of this Charter.

COMMITTEES

The Forum will carry out its various functions through an Executive Committee which shall be responsible for assuring that all Forum activities are conducted in accordance with he Charter provisions.

The Executive Committee shall consist of seven members:  The Forum Chairperson, who will also Chair the Executive Committee; the Forum Vice Chairperson; one member selected by and from the State Members; one member selected by and from the Federal Government Members; one member selected by and from the Local Government Members; on member selected by and from the State Departmental Members; and one from the Forum Chairperson of the immediate prior term.  The term of office shall be two calendar years.   Selections are to be made at the last meeting of the calendar year immediately preceding expiration of the two-year terms.  If a member cannot complete his/her term, a new member shall be selected by the appropriate member group to serve the balance of the term.

The Executive Committee shall be responsible for designating the date(s) and place of regularly scheduled Forum meetings in conformance with the requirements of the meetings Charter provisions.  The Committee shall also be responsible for planning and developing meeting agendas.

The Executive Committee shall, with the advice and majority consent of Forum members, be responsible for identifying relevant special and general purpose projects, developing project objectives, and assigning, evaluating, and controlling project work efforts either through the establishment of ad hoc committees or such other means as deemed appropriate in the circumstances.

The Executive Committee shall be responsible for evaluating requests for information and/or assistance from sources outside the Southwest Forum and, with the advice and majority consent for Forum members, deciding and implementing an appropriate course of action.

All Executive Committee proposed actions with less than unanimous committee member support shall be resolved by majority vote of the Forum members in attendance at regularly scheduled or called Forum meetings.

A Nominating Committee will be established every two years and will be responsible for submitting a proposed slate of candidates to the membership for the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson positions.  The Federal, State, Local, and State Departmental Auditors shall separately caucus at the second Forum meeting in odd numbered years and each group select one individual who shall serve as their representative on the Nominating Committee.   The immediate Past President of the Forum will Chair the Committee.  The Committee will present its nominations at the last regularly scheduled Forum meeting in odd numbered years.

The State Members and the Local Members will separately caucus at the last scheduled meeting in odd numbered years and each group will select a representative to the National Forum.  The representatives will serve two-year terms starting in July of even numbered years.

CHARTER AMENDMENTS

Proposed Charter amendments shall be presented in writing to the Forum members for discussion at regularly scheduled Forum meetings.  The Executive Committee shall, prior to Forum ratification, determine the effect, if any, of adopting the proposed amendment on existing Charter provisions, apprise the Forum members of their findings and recommendations, and formulate the proposed Charter amendments shall be by mail polling of all members and shall require two-thirds majority vote of all members.

COVENANT

We the undersigned, on behalf of our respective audit organizations, hereby agree to support the purposes of the Southwest Intergovernmental Audit Forum and to participate in its activities as herein states; provided that nothing in this Charter shall be construed as subjecting any department, establishment, or other instrumentality of the Federal, State, or Local Governments or the heads thereof, or any functions vested by law in or assigned pursuant to law to any such agency or head, to the authority of any other such agency, head or Forum member or as abrogating, modifying or restricting any such function in any manner.