Western New York Volunteer Firemen's Association Constitution

AMENDED – July 2017



The name of this corporation is "Western New York Volunteer Firemen's Association."


The purpose of this Association shall be to promote and improve the safety and welfare of the citizens and firefighters of Western New York by such means as specified in the Western New York Volunteer Firemen's Association Certificate of Incorporation and through the Western New York Volunteer Firemen's Association Constitution and Bylaws.

This Association shall also not engage in any activities that are reserved for or involve the internal affairs of fire corporations, fire departments, or volunteer fire companies, which are members of WNYVFA, nor shall the Association partake in activities that are prohibited under New York State Not-for-Profit Corporation Law or the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986.

Section I
This Association shall be composed of the organizations and persons entered upon the rolls at the time of the adoption of this revised Constitution and such other associates as may be from time to time admitted.

Section II
Membership in this organization shall be gathered from the counties of Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Niagara, Orleans, Steuben, and Wyoming, all in the State of New York.

Section III
The role of this organization shall be comprised of members, life members, fully paid life members, sustaining members, and honorary members.

Section IV
For the purpose of this article, members shall be defined as any Volunteer Fire Company or Fire Department, and Exempt Volunteer Firemen's Association, or Firemen's Benevolent Association, or organizations thereof, volunteer ambulance services, including organization striving to enhance the fire service of New York State and all those other Volunteer Fire Organizations who comply with the By-Laws of this Association.

Section V
Life Members shall be those who qualify as such in accordance with the By-Laws of this Association.

Section VI
Honorary Memberships shall be granted to those who have rendered outstanding service to their community and the public at large.

Section VII
Sustaining members shall be those who through sale, service, and engineering of fire apparatus, fire equipment, fire protection equipment, have a unique and supporting role to the members of the Western New York Volunteer Firemen's Association.

Section I
The Officers of this Association shall be the President, First Vice President, Second Vice President, Secretary, Assistant Secretary, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, and the Immediate Past President. These officers, with the exception of the Immediate Past President, shall be elected for a term of one (1) year at the annual meeting of the Association.

Section II
There shall be elected a Board of Trustees. This Board shall be composed of one (1) member of each County holding membership in this Association. This member shall be nominated by the County Firemen's Association, which they represent and reside in. The Secretary of that County Firemen's Association shall submit a certificate to the Secretary of WNYVFA stating that that County for such position has duly nominated the WNYVFA Trustee candidate. This certificate shall be submitted to the WNYVFA Secretary prior to the annual meeting of this Association. In the event that the County Secretary fails to file such certificate, then the office shall be declared vacant.

In the event that a duly elected Trustee vacates his office by moving, death, resignation, or removal from office, the Executive Committee shall request the County Association where the vacancy arose to nominate a new candidate within sixty days from the time the vacancy arose. The Executive Committee will at its next meeting after receiving the nomination, appoint the candidate to fill the vacancy for the balance of the term. The recommended term of the Trustee shall be no more than five (5) consecutive years, however, any county not able to follow this guideline, their duly elected trustee shall be accepted.

Section III
Terms of the officer shall expire the first of September each year. The officers elected at the Convention shall assume office on the first of September and assume duties at the organizational meeting in September.

Section IV
Any officer or Trustee having three consecutive unexcused absences from meetings called by the President or as set forth in the By-Laws, his office shall be declared vacant. The vacancy shall be filled by appointment by the President as set forth in Section II above.

Section V
Qualifications for Officers:

  1. Be a member in good standing with WNYVFA for a minimum of five (5) years, or
  2. Chairman of a Standing Committee as read in Article V, Section I – Standing Committee
  3. Or served on such committee for a minimum of five (5) years,
  4. Or served as a Trustee for a minimum of five (5) years for his respective county in the WNYVFA.


Section I

A. Resolutions
B. Legislative
C. Nominating
D. Membership
E. Emergency Medical Services
F. Fire Prevention
G. Steering
H. Budget
I. Convention
J. Parade Rules
K. Firemen of the Year
L. Fire Police
M. Public Relations
N. By-Laws
O. Topics
P. Audit
Q. Past Presidents
R. Bowling
S. Queen's Pageant
T. Tournament & Drill
U. Nozzle Practice
V. President's Participation Award
W. Service Award & 2% Tax
X. Memorial Scholarship


Section II
The President shall be appointed the Chairman and members of each committee unless otherwise provided in the by-Laws. The President shall replace any Committee chairman or co-chairman if named, who does not attend at least one meeting out of the four quarterly executive meetings. He shall select the replacement from the same county as his predecessor.

Section III
The Chairman of standing committees shall not be chosen to succeed them after they have served in such capacity for five consecutive years.

Section I
The Annual Meeting of the Association shall be held on the fourth Thursday and succeeding days in July of each year at such a place as a majority of the members of the Association, present at the meeting shall designate. In the event that such a meeting cannot be held in the place designated by the members, such meeting shall be held at some other place, designated by the Executive Committee.

Section II
A failure to hold an Annual Meeting at the time designated shall in no way work dissolution of the Association.

Section I
This constitution may be amended on the second day of any annual meeting of the Association by a two-thirds vote of the members present and voting, provided that the By-Laws Committee presents proposed amendments to the convention at the first day's meeting. All proposed amendments must be submitted in duplicate to the Secretary at least thirty days prior to the annual meeting.

Section II
A committee appointed to study a proposed amendment or revision shall be deemed sufficient for the submission of such proposed amendment or revision and, following such committee's report at the Annual Meeting be voted on at that meeting.

Section III
Wherever the words "Fireman/Firemen" appear, it shall be deemed "Firefighter(s)" except in the name of the organization.