Who We Are
Southeast Neighbors (SEN), the neighborhood association in southeast Eugene, Oregon, aspires to educate and organize neighbors to effectively engage with Eugene city government, and to facilitate the continual improvement, beautification, and celebration of our neighborhood. Membership is free and automatic for anyone who lives or works in the neighborhood. Our meetings, community events, and volunteer opportunities are open to all.
As Southeast Neighbors, we care about the quality of life in our neighborhood, and we work together to maintain and improve it. Through our collective actions, a consultative relationship with the City of Eugene, participation in the Neighborhood Leadership Council and other local groups, and through our many other relationships and organizational efforts, we share great opportunities to protect and contribute to the beautiful place we live in.
Southeast Neighbors (SEN) is one of 23 neighborhood associations recognized by the city of Eugene, Oregon. The SEN Charter (PDF) describes its purpose, structure, and operation. Funding for neighborhood associations and their activities is provided primarily through the city’s Human Rights and Neighborhood Involvement program. Participation in SEN is open to all residents, property owners, or business owners within the boundaries of the SEN neighborhood.
The purpose of Southeast Neighbors is to build community at the neighborhood level and improve the livability of the neighborhood.
The Southeast Neighbors organization shall encompass the area bounded by the intersection of Willamette Street and 29th Avenue, east on 29th Avenue to Amazon Parkway, south to East 30th Avenue, and the Eugene city limits to the east. From there, the boundary follows the city limits to the south. From there the boundary follows the city limits south to their intersection with Willamette Street, then north along Willamette Street north to the intersection of Willamette Street and 29th Avenue.
Southeast Neighbors is represented by Ward Two Council Member Matt Keating.
Approximately 13,500 people live in SEN. Up to 10 volunteers serve on the SEN Board. General membership meetings are held quarterly and executive board meetings are held monthly.
Southeast Neighbors’ Charter
ARTICLE I. NAME
The name of this organization is Southeast Neighbors (The Association).
ARTICLE II. GEOGRAPHIC BOUNDARIES
The Southeast Neighborhood encompasses that area bounded by the intersection of Willamette Street and 29th Avenue, east on 29th Avenue to Amazon Parkway, south to East 30th Avenue and the Eugene city limits to the east. From there the boundary follows the city limits south to their intersection with Willamette Street, then north along Willamette Street north to the intersection of Willamette Street and 29th Avenue.
ARTICLE III. PURPOSE
Section 1. Advisory to City. The Association is advisory to the City Council, Planning Commission, and other City boards, commissions, and officials on matters affecting the growth and development of the neighborhood. The Association may develop proposals with respect to land use, zoning, parks, open space and recreation, annexation, housing, community facilities, transportation and traffic, public safety, sanitation, and other activities and public services which affect the neighborhood.
Section 2. Neighborhood Focus. The Association shall address all matters which affect the neighborhood in accordance with the City of Eugene’s Neighborhood Organization Recognition Policy, Resolution No. 2554, as amended by Resolution No. 3746, including problems of public safety and economic development.
Section 3. Educational. The Association shall serve in an educational capacity to inform the citizens of the neighborhood. The Association shall encourage and facilitate communication among citizens on matters of common concern.
Section 4. Powers. The Association may do whatever is necessary and appropriate to enhance the welfare of its residents and livability of the neighborhood and to enable it to exercise the powers granted or allowed to it by the Eugene Neighborhood Organization Recognition Policy, Resolution No. 2554, as amended by Resolution No. 3746.
ARTICLE IV. MEMBERSHIP
Section 1. Membership shall include every resident, property owner, and business owner (18 years of age or older) within the boundaries described in ARTICLE II.
Section 2. Each member shall be entitled to one vote. Each corporation, partnership, non-profit agency, or business shall be limited to one vote on any motion brought before the membership at any general meeting.
Section 3. No absentee voting or voting by proxy shall be allowed.
ARTICLE V. OFFICERS AND DUTIES
Section 1. The officers are a Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary, and Treasurer. Each shall reside or own property within the Association boundaries. No member shall hold more than one office simultaneously.
Section 2. Duties of Chair. The Chair shall coordinate and supervise the business and activities of the Board and the Association. The Chair shall preside at all meetings of the Board and all general meetings, serve as an ex-officio member of all committees, and be the primary contact person for and liaison with the City of Eugene.
Section 3. Duties of Vice Chair. The Vice Chair shall assist the Chair upon request. In the absence of the Chair, or in the event of the Chair’s inability or failure to act in accordance with delegated duties or in support of a majority decision of the board or SEN membership, the Vice Chair shall execute the duties and powers of the Chair.
Section 4. Duties of the Secretary. The Secretary shall record the minutes of all General and Board meetings and maintain on file copies of said minutes, correspondence, attendance lists, and other records.
Section 5. Duties of the Treasurer. The Treasurer shall receive all Association funds; deposit them in a bank approved by the Board, and pay out funds only on notice signed by one other officer and the Treasurer.
ARTICLE VI. BOARD
Section 1. Board Membership. The Board consists of the officers of the Association and up to six (6) additional at Large Representatives. Each shall reside or own property within the Association boundaries as provided in Article II.
Section 2. At Large Representatives. At Large Representatives shall be elected during the May Election Meeting, and may be reelected, for a two year term. An At Large Representative may reside anywhere within the Association’s boundaries. At Large Representative vacancies that arise between membership meetings may be filled by a majority vote of the board with ratification of the SEN membership at the next full membership meeting. The terms of service of such new board members will expire at the same time as the members whose vacancy they fill.
Section 3. Board Meetings. The Board shall hold regularly scheduled meetings and the membership shall be given reasonable, advance notice of such schedule. The Board may hold special meetings when called by the Chair or by any four (4) Board members after notice has been provided to all Board members. All meetings of the Board are open to the general public.
Section 4. Committees. The Board may establish committees to advise on Association business.
Section 5. Meeting Procedures. Notices of Meetings, Meeting Agendas and Minutes shall be conducted as outlined in ARTICLE VIII MEETINGS.
Section 6. Quorum. A majority of the Board members constitutes a quorum for the transaction of business. Less than a quorum of the Board may meet but may not take action on behalf of the Association.
Section 7. Powers. The Board may exercise the powers of the Association as may be necessary to accomplish the purposes of the Association. Board policy decisions and opinions representing the view of the community on an issue where the general membership has not yet voted shall be presented to the membership at the next general meeting.
Section 8. Voting. Except as otherwise provided in this charter, a majority of a quorum shall be sufficient to determine any matter before the Board. No absentee voting or voting by proxy shall be allowed.
Electronic voting may be requested at any time by the Chair for the sole purpose of voting on a motion requiring a decision prior to the next regular board meeting. Notice of the electronic vote, stating the motion for consideration, shall be delivered to each board member by e-mail and each board member shall be given a minimum of three days to respond with his/her vote on the motion. Any board member desiring to discuss the motion or propose an amendment to the motion must do so via e-mail during the voting period. Quorum rules shall be the same as under Article VI, Section 6. A phone message to any board member without e-mail access shall be deemed notification of the special electronic meeting. Board members without e-mail access must relay their vote and discussions through a board member with e-mail access. Any votes taken electronically must be ratified at the following meeting and recorded in the minutes.
Section 9. Representation. The Chair or the Chair’s designee shall present the Association’s opinions to the City Council, Planning Commission, or other appropriate decision makers when so authorized by a vote of the Board. Such advisory opinions will specify whether the position is one of the general membership, the Board, or the organization members present and lacking a quorum. If there is a minority position on the issue, represented by at least one-third of those voting, this shall be presented.
ARTICLE VII. NOMINATION, ELECTION, AND REMOVAL OF OFFICERS AND BOARD MEMBERS
Section 1. Elections.
All board members and officers of SEN shall be elected at the annual May membership meeting for a two year term by a majority vote of the attending SEN members. Chair and Vice Chair may not serve more than four consecutive years in the same office.
Section 2. Nominating Committee. A three-member nominating committee shall be appointed by the Chair prior to the annual meeting. The committee shall be composed of a member of the Board and two other non-Board members. Notice of the creation of the nominating committee and of the annual election shall be published in the Association newsletter prior to the meeting.
Section 3. Candidates. At the annual meeting, the nominating committee shall present the proposed candidates for office. Additional nominations may be made from the floor at the meeting.
Section 4. Absences. If a member of the Board is absent for three consecutive meetings, either regular or special without prior approval, that member’s position shall be vacated unless the Board finds that extraordinary circumstances prevented the member’s attendance.
Section 5. Termination. Membership on the Board terminates at once for anyone who does not meet the criteria under Article V Section 1.
Section 6. Removal. Any Board member may be removed by a two-thirds vote of the members present at a general meeting. However, prior notice to the Board of intent to submit a removal motion is required at least 72-hours before a general meeting in order to be included in the agenda.
Section 7. Vacancies.
With the exception of the Chair, whose absence shall be filled by the Vice Chair, the SEN board shall fill board vacancies that arise between membership meetings by a majority vote of the board with ratification of the SEN membership at the next full membership meeting (see section VI 2).
ARTICLE VIII GENERAL MEMBERSHIP MEETINGS
The rules contained in Robert’s Rules of Order, newly revised, shall guide the Association in all cases in which they are applicable, and in which they are not inconsistent with the charter of the Association. In cases where interpretation of the rules is required the Chair shall rule on proper procedure.
Section 1. General Meetings. There shall be a minimum of four general meetings per year, at a time and place to be decided by the Board. All general meetings of the Association are open to the public. The quorum necessary to transact business at any general meeting is ten participants.
Section 2. Annual Meeting. An annual meeting of The Southeast Neighbors shall be held in May for the purpose of hearing reports from all officers and committees; for electing the Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary, and Treasurer; and for such other business as may be appropriate.[ The annual May meeting shall be announced on the website and to the email list of SEN neighbors.]*
[Section 3. Notice of Meetings. Notices of all regularly scheduled meetings which include the date, time, and place of each meeting and a summary of the agenda shall be published in the local newspaper and on the Association web site. Electronic notification of regular meetings shall be available to all who request it.]*
Section 4. Meeting Agendas. Meeting agendas shall include all items requested by the Chair or any two members of the Board. Any participant may raise and have discussed any additional item not previously on the agenda, but that item shall not be voted upon until the next meeting unless two-thirds of the members present and voting approve a motion to allow voting at the same meeting.
Section 5. Minutes. Minutes shall be kept on file and summaries of actions taken shall be communicated to the Association on the Association web site.
ARTICLE IX. NEIGHBORHOOD COMMUNICATIONS
Section 1. Definition and Purpose. Communications to neighborhood residents from the Association may include, but not be limited to, newsletters, postcards, websites, e-mail notices, and other outreach efforts, such as surveys. The purpose of the communications is to inform neighbors and to provide a forum for free expression of opinions by persons entitled to participate in the Association on issues of interest to the neighborhood.
Section 2. General Policies for Publications Using City Funds.
- Advocacy positions may be included in communications in an editorial format. Opinion pieces must be clearly indicated and opportunity provided for presentation of differing viewpoints.
- The Board shall appoint an editor for the newsletter. The Board has the ultimate responsibility for the contents of the newsletter and other communications.
- Each issue of the newsletter shall identify the officers of the neighborhood association, and those compiling that issue, if other than the officers.
- The Newsletter shall include a postal or email address for submission of articles, letters, or other material.
ARTICLE X. FINANCES
Section 1. The Association may receive funds and employ persons to further its purposes, and may own and dispose of property.
Section 2. Grants or monies secured to fund specific projects or programs, which have itemized budgets already approved by the Board or general membership, may be expended without further approval for budgeted expenses.
ARTICLE XI. AMENDMENTS AND CHARTER REVIEW
This charter may be amended by a two-third vote of the participants at any general meeting of the Association.
The SEN board will provide public notice on the SEN website and in the SEN newsletter of an upcoming charter amendment vote three weeks in advance of the meeting at which such an amendment is to be considered.
*Note: These sections are scheduled for review and amendment at the next board meeting.