Commonly Asked Questions About Animal Seizures

By Kaley Pugh, Executive Director, Animal Protection Services of Saskatchewan

In Saskatchewan, Humane Societies (HS) are defined by the Animal Protection Act, 1999 (APA) and designated by the Ministry of Agriculture. There are a number of Humane Societies in the province, including Animal Protection Services of Saskatchewan (APSS). All Humane Societies and SPCAs in the province are separate organizations, with no oversight by any one umbrella organization.

Only five Humane Societies in Saskatchewan have APOs and do animal cruelty investigations:

  • Animal Protection Services of Saskatchewan
  • Saskatoon SPCA
  • Regina Humane Society
  • Moose Jaw Humane Society
  • Prince Albert SPCA

(RCMP members and other police are also recognized as Animal Protection Officers.)

When APSS, or any other Humane Society/SPCA with an APO, seizes animals from an owner during an animal cruelty investigation, the public often has questions about how the procedure works and the outcomes for the owners and the animals. Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about animal seizures:

What is a Humane Society’s legal authority to seize an animal?

Section 6 of the Animal Protection Act, 1999 (APA) gives an APO working for a Humane Society the authority to relieve animals of their distress, and Section 7 of the APA gives the authority to get a search warrant.

Where is an APO allowed to go during an inspection or investigation?

This depends on what stage the case is in, and what type of facility it’s at.  Anywhere animals for sale, hire or exhibition can be inspected or investigated during regular business hours without a warrant, unless it’s a private dwelling. (See Section 5 of APA.)

APOs can observe anything in “plain view” during execution of their duty to contact the owner to verify or discuss a complaint, but they can’t trespass. If APOs have evidence of an offence, they are then in investigation mode, and Charter of Rights issues regarding unreasonable search and seizure can come into play, meaning that they can only proceed with proper consent from the owner, or if they have a search warrant.

APOs have authority to get search warrants, and then can search the areas named in the warrant, including private dwellings if necessary, and can gather evidence that can be used in court. There are also very specific circumstances when APOs can investigate and gather evidence without a warrant, but they have to be careful to only use those provisions when truly necessary. If APOs are found to be searching or gathering evidence without the proper authority or right to do so, any evidence they gather can be thrown out, and result in the prosecution being severely compromised.

Why do people get so many “chances” before animals are taken away?

Section 6 of the APA says that APOs have authority to seize animals if the owner has failed to relieve them of their distress. In practical terms, this means that owners have to be given a chance to fix the problems that are causing the distress. The opportunity to relieve the distress and the timelines to do that have to reasonable. For example, the APO cannot require that an owner put 300 pounds on an underweight horse, and then seize the horse the next day because it hasn’t gained 300 pounds. However, some distress is more severe and must be rectified in a more urgent manner. Acutely injured animals must immediately be treated or euthanized, and failure to do that could result in a nearly immediate seizure of the animal and only one “chance” for the owner to fix the problem.

Who decides when animals need to be seized?

If an investigation has progressed to the point where APOs feel animals may need to be removed, usually they will have a veterinarian go to see the animals onsite. (In some cases, the APO may bring the animal to the veterinary clinic instead.) The veterinarian assesses whether the animal has adequate food, water, shelter, and care (which are the elements in question for distress under the APA), evaluates whether any corrective actions were taken or if action was appropriate, and recommends that the animal be seized or not. Veterinarians are considered experts by the courts, so investigations rely heavily on veterinary opinion regarding the adequacy of care. The APO is the one who actually seizes the animal.

APOs can seize animals without a veterinary consultation, but APSS doesn’t use that option as often because APOs are not considered experts by the courts. In cases where animals are seized by an APO alone, the distress is generally very obvious, and/or previous requirements have obviously not been followed.

Can veterinarians seize an animal without an APO?

No, the authority to remove an animal is the APO’s, not the veterinarian’s. Remember that RCMP members and other police are also APOs, and so they can authorize seizure in an emergency.

What happens after animals are seized by APSS?

This depends somewhat on the condition of the animal.  There are provisions for animals in severe distress that are discussed below.

In general, animals are held in the care of the HS that seized them for a 3-business day period.  During that time the HS will have made arrangements for whatever care is appropriate for the animal.

For cases handled by APSS, livestock are often held at auction market facilities, while companion animals are usually held at an animal shelter facility. Sometimes private caretakers are asked to care for smaller numbers of horses or other livestock. Occasionally, veterinarians are asked to care for companion animals in need of medical attention, or where an animal shelter facility is not available.

After the 3-day holding period, animals are usually sold or given away. Large herds of livestock are usually sold at auction as soon as possible after a seizure. Horses and small numbers of livestock like pigs and goats are sometimes given to their private caretakers. Companion animals are usually given to the shelter where they were housed; the shelter then becomes responsible for their ongoing care, adoption, etc.

Occasionally, livestock are in a condition where immediate sale is not appropriate. For example, when the Saskatchewan SPCA seized nearly 900 sheep in 2014, the ewes were lambing, hadn’t been sheared in a long time, and were severely under-condition. In that case, the Saskatchewan SPCA paid a caretaker to look after the sheep for several months in order to supervise their lambing, wean lambs, shear the ewes, and get them into better condition before sale.

Animals are also sometimes held for longer periods if there are special circumstances such as legal action preventing their sale, or if the owner has been granted an extension because they are making arrangements to pay the seizure expenses.

Who pays for the care of animals during the holding period?

The Humane Society that seized an animal is responsible for all costs, including the costs of the seizure and the care of the animal for as long as it is held. APSS rarely recovers these costs in companion animal cases because the animals are usually given to shelters. Where livestock is sold, the revenue is used to pay the seizure expenses, with any surplus being returned to the animal’s owner.

Can the owner get the animals back?

Section 10 of the APA says that the HS can sell or give the animal away if the owner has not paid the seizure expenses within the 3-business day holding period. What this means is that if an owner pays the expenses, the HS cannot sell the animal or give it away. Where an owner has paid the expenses, the animal is sometimes returned, since otherwise the HS would have to hold the animal and incur care expenses for an extended period of time, possibly until the outcome of a trial.

This section used to be interpreted to mean that if owners pay the expenses, they can automatically have their animals back, but this is no longer the case. Now, arrangements for the return of animals upon payment of expenses include that the animal’s conditions have been improved.

Humane Societies also have the ability to apply to the courts for custody of animals when charges have already been laid, which would prevent the return even if expenses are paid. This option is not used often, if ever, since it may have the consequence of the HS being responsible for an animal (not being able to sell it or give it away) until the outcome of a trial.

Police also have the option of arresting owners and laying charges immediately, and releasing them on conditions that they must not own or care for animals, essentially preventing the return of the animals.  This is done in only the most serious cases.

Can seized animals be euthanized?

After the 3-day holding period, the animal belongs to the HS and they can then euthanize it, give it away, sell it or whatever else is legal for the owner of an animal to do.

Section 6 (3) of the APA also gives an APO the authority to euthanize an animal if it’s in critical distress and cannot be relieved of its distress. So, if an animal cannot be kept free from pain, it can be euthanized during the holding period.

Does every seizure mean the owner gets charged?

No, every seizure does not result in charges, but generally if APSS has the grounds to seize an animal, they have the grounds for charges. Sometimes charges are not laid if there is nothing to be gained from the prosecution, or if there is a low likelihood of a successful prosecution. As an example, if an allegedly abandoned dog is seized, but APSS does not have good proof that the dog was abandoned and the owner’s story gives reasonable doubt, then charges may not be laid.

Can you charge someone if animals haven’t been seized?

Yes! Charges depend on evidence of distress, and the ability to prove that distress occurred. Seizure relates to whether the owner relieved the animal of its distress. APSS can, and has, laid charges where no animals have been seized. In one recent dog case, the owners voluntarily surrendered about 45 dogs to a rescue during the course of the investigation. APSS was not forced to seize the animals as they had been relieved of their distress. However, APSS did have sufficient evidence that the animals had been in distress during the APO’s visits, so charges were laid.

In another case, approximately 900 layer hens were in distress, but there was no way to seize them due to biosecurity, welfare risks during capture and transport, and quota issues. As a result, the birds were left on the farm but the owner was charged and ordered to depopulate.

For further information about animal protection in Saskatchewan, please contact:

Kaley Pugh, Executive Director, Animal Protection Services of Saskatchewan

306.382.2418

http://animalprotectionservices.ca

 

 

Holidays Hours

Season’s greetings from all of us at the Saskatchewan SPCA.

HOLIDAY HOURS FOR 2015:

Thursday, Dec. 24:  open 8 a.m. to noon

Friday, Dec. 25 to Monday, Dec. 28 inclusive:  closed

Tuesday, Dec. 29:  open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Wednesday, Dec. 30:  open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Thursday, Dec. 31:  open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 1 to Sunday, Jan. 3 inclusive:  closed

Monday, January 4:  open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

If you are calling to report suspected animal cruelty, please see the following for information about which agency to contact:  Reporting suspected animal neglect or abuse

Congratulations, Winners!

Congratulations to the following winners in this year’s Christmas Cash Lottery.

DAILY cash prize draws continue throughout the month of December; YOU could be our next lucky winner! (Ticket info:  https://www.prairieadtickets.ca/SSPCA/)

November 13, 2015 Marie Nadeau Davidson  $     1,000.00 11387
November 20, 2015 Rosemarie Schmaltz Sceptre  $     1,000.00 05257
November 27, 2015 Jane Wilmot Regina  $     1,000.00 29407
December 1, 2015 Julie Mazur Canora  $     1,000.00 25385
December 2, 2015 Roger Belton Candle Lake  $        200.00 12937
December 3, 2015 Kevin James Peepeetch Melville  $        200.00 10179

K-9 Calendar Makes a Great Gift

For the animal lover on your gift list … why not give the 2016 Saskatoon Police Service K9 Unit calendar. This unique 13-month calendar features photos of the hard-working members of their canine unit.

Proceeds in support of the Saskatchewan SPCA Stryker K-9 Care Fund, providing veterinary care for retired police dogs throughout the province.

Just $10. Get your copy today at the following locations:

  • Early’s Farm & Garden in Saskatoon (both locations)
  • Arlington Animal Hospital, Saskatoon
  • Saskatoon City Police Headquarters (at the front information desk)
  • Saskatchewan SPCA office (519 45th St W, Saskatoon)

OR Call:  1.877.382.7722.

Continue reading

It’s Time to Win!

It’s time to win … with the Saskatchewan SPCA’s Christmas Cash Lottery.

  • Grand prize draw:  $20,000
  • Daily cash prize draws throughout December
  • Huge supporter draw:  $10,000
  • Early bird draws for $1,000

PLUS the amazing 50/50 Kitty Pool. Last year, the Kitty Pool winner took home $30,675.

Get your tickets today by calling 1.877.577.7220 or see https://www.prairieadtickets.ca/SSPCA/

Your support helps us continue our work to prevent animal cruelty and ensure the humane treatment of animals. We are working to assist the animal and human victims of family violence … provide support for retired police dogs … and expand humane education programs for children. We host an annual educational conference attended by shelters and rescue groups from across the province. As well we are in the planning stages of an exciting new initiative to help protect homeless animals by through the registration and certification of rescue groups. Thank you for your generous support!

All lottery prize draws will be held at 588 1st Avenue, Regina, SK

  • Early bird draws:  Nov. 13, 20 and 27 at 4 p.m.
  • Daily draws:  Dec. 1-31 at 4 p.m.
  • Huge supporter draw:  Dec. 31 at 4 p.m.
  • Grand prize draw:  Dec. 31 at 4 p.m.
  • 50/50 draw:  Dec. 31 at 4 p.m.

Lottery licence #RR15-0396 and LR15-0057.  Tickets available for sale to Saskatchewan residents only.

 

Saving Fluffy to Changing Society: The many faces of animal welfare

 

By Dr. Sandra Neumann

Tuesday morning. Media are exploding with the story of Fluffy. Found in a dumpster Fluffy is seriously injured and needs major veterinary care. Unfortunately, we’re all too familiar with this or similar scenarios. Abandoned, neglected, abused pets left to die and rescued at the last minute.

These stories grab the headlines and touch our hearts. Animal welfare in action. Thinking about a topic for this article I thought it may be a good opportunity to give some recognition to the countless individuals who improve the welfare of animals but are rarely the focus of such media attention. They work behind the scenes and usually do not make the headlines. For them there are no spotlights, no interviews on Oprah, no going viral. They work quietly. Stubbornly. And sometimes at personal and professional risk, questioning the status quo.

They are the ones who butt heads with their colleagues and superiors trying to offer alternatives to things that “…we’ve done like this for over fifty years.” They are the ones who shift societal values, setting new directions that will improve the welfare of hundreds of thousands of animals in the future. They are the ones who propel society forward to a new level of animal welfare. They are a hundred people changing the minds of a thousand, changing the minds of ten thousand, changing the minds of a hundred thousand.

Who are these relentless fighters for animal welfare? And where can we find them?

Everywhere.

Animal welfare advocates work in the most likely and the most unlikely of places. They can even be found amongst groups that are often attacked for their lack of animal welfare. And they are active in some areas we may not even directly associate with animal welfare in the first place.

They are:

  • The many employees of SPCAs and Humane Societies who, often underpaid, work so very hard trying to improve the lives of animals in their care and spend hours taking care of them the best they can with often very limited resources.
  • Individuals who volunteer their time at a shelter or a sanctuary or provide expertise as a member of a board, a committee, or a working group.
  • Researchers changing testing protocols so fewer and fewer – and maybe at some point in the future, no animals at all – need to be used to get results.
  • Producers who recognize that if they treat their animals well and keep them healthy and happy their animals will provide for them and their families.
  • Hunters who ensure an animal is killed with a clean shot and sometimes spend hours tracking a wounded animal to minimize its suffering.
  • Trappers working on the development of more humane traps that kill instantaneously so animals are spared the panic they experience in live traps.
  • Members of the entertainment industry who are slowly moving away from animal-based performances and look toward groups like Cirque du Soleil for inspiration on how to entertain people without the use of animals.
  • Individuals working for pest control companies trying to find the most humane way of removing so-called “pests.”
  • Social workers who understand the link [between domestic violence and animal abuse] and try to encourage interagency cooperation and reporting.
  • Legislators who try to change the status of animals in law so they are no longer considered “property.”
  • Animal Protection Officers who enforce animal welfare legislation, often removing animals from impossible situations and laying charges so that these crimes can be appropriately punished.
  • Prosecutors who take animal abuse seriously, recognizing it as a both a legal and a community safety issue.
  • And yes, even some politicians (though few and far between) have been known to brave the ingrained opposition to propose changes that benefit animals.

For some animal welfare is part of their job or profession but many more go above and beyond because animal welfare is their passion. Their fight continues long after the spotlight has been shut off and the media frenzy has died down.

Let’s not forget these individuals who work quietly and tirelessly to improve the lives of countless animals, one day at a time, one project at a time. If you have a minute, think of them. If you meet any of them, thank them.

“The most important legacy you will ever leave is your vision planted in the minds of your disciples and a passion as strong as a storm in their hearts.” – Shannon L. Alder

 

Career Opportunity

COMMUNITY RELATIONS COORDINATOR

Overview

Use your skills in fundraising, public relation, and communications to help improve the welfare of animals. The Saskatchewan SPCA is seeking a full-time Community Relations Coordinator, based in Saskatoon. The successful candidate will organize public events, develop content for all types of print and electronic communication tools, and develop positive relationships with stakeholders on behalf of the Saskatchewan SPCA.

Established in 1928, the Saskatchewan SPCA is the provincial animal welfare organization working to promote the welfare of animals and prevent animal cruelty. While we work in cooperation with other SPCAs and Humane Societies in the province, the Saskatchewan SPCA is a separate and autonomous organization. Read more at http://sspca.ca/about-us/

Responsibilities

  • Grow existing and create new fundraising programs
  • Research sponsorship opportunities and cultivate relationships with potential funders
  • Assist with new social enterprise initiatives, as required
  • Develop and manage community outreach events
  • Prepare and deliver presentations to key stakeholders
  • Assist in the planning and staging of the annual Animal Welfare Conference
  • Research, write and edit content for internal and external communication tools including brochures, newsletters, media releases, fact sheets, websites, and social media
  • Serve as media spokesperson for the Saskatchewan SPCA, as required
  • Other duties as assigned

Education and experience

  • A university degree or diploma in a relevant area of study (communications, marketing, education, media relations, the humanities)
  • A genuine interest in improving the welfare of animals
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Excellent research skills
  • Comfortable in the use of Facebook, Twitter, and other social media
  • Competent in the use of Microsoft Word and PowerPoint
  • Experience with WordPress an asset
  • Ability to work independently or as part of a team, depending on the nature of the project
  • Enjoy making presentations to adults and children
  • Excellent organizational and decision-making skills
  • Able to work weekends and evenings, as required
  • A valid Saskatchewan driver’s license and reliable transportation required for travel throughout province

Salary and Office Information

Salary:  negotiable

Office Location:  519 – 45th Street West, Saskatoon

To apply

Send your resume and cover letter to:

  • info@sspca.ca   or
  • Saskatchewan SPCA, Box 37, Saskatoon, SK  S7K 3K

CLOSING DATE:  September 28, 2015

Questions about the position may be directed to:

Sandra Anderson:  sandra@sspca.ca

 

A Great Day of Golf at Critter Classic 2015

Green Acres Golf Course was the place to be on Saturday (Sept. 12th) for the Saskatchewan SPCA Critter Classic 2015.

Thank you to everyone who helped make this day a success:  golfers, sponsors, donors, organizers, Green Acres staff, and our volunteers. The highlight of the silent auction was a trip for two anywhere WestJet flies, along with a handy travel duffel bag. Thank you to WestJet for your amazing donation!

L_WestJet_4C

 

 

We extend an extra special thank you to our 2015 Critter Classic Major Sponsors:

Western Litho Printers (Pan 661 116)

 

 

 

prairie logo

 

 

Critter Classic 2015 Major Sponsors

 

 

 

Many thanks to our Hole Sponsors this year:

  • Regina Boxing
  • LG Fitness
  • Nobel Johnston
  • Albert North Vet Clinic (Jim Tourand)
  • Bergens Auto Body
  • Supreme Basics (Jason Fischer)
  • Kevin Mellor Law
  • Kinetic Auto Services Ltd.
  • Fraser Strategy
  • Superior Garage
  • Able Courier
  • Supremex
  • Outlaw Communications

Funds raised at Critter Classic help the Saskatchewan SPCA continue our work to ensure the humane treatment of animals.

Hope to see you in 2016 for our 6th annual Critter Classic!

Bylaws for Approval by Saskatchewan SPCA Membership

 

 

Proposed changes to the current Saskatchewan SPCA bylaws are printed in red. The proposed bylaws will be discussed at the upcoming Annual General Meeting of the Saskatchewan SPCA. The AGM will be held Saturday, Sept. 26, 2015, startnig at 5 p.m. at the Saskatoon Travelodge Hotel (Delta Room). The AGM is open to the public.

Bylaw No. 1     Name and Territory

1.1       The name of the Society shall be The Saskatchewan Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which may also be known or referred to as the Saskatchewan SPCA or SSPCA.

1.2       The Society shall carry on its work within the territorial boundaries of the Province of Saskatchewan. The Board in consultation shall define the areas of responsibility of the Society in relation to each of the local Societies.

1.3       The Head Office shall be located in any centre in the Province of Saskatchewan which the Board may from time to time determine.

Bylaw No. 2     Vision, Mission and Guiding Principles (NEW)

Vision

2.1       To ensure the humane treatment of animals.

Mission

2.2       To be the provincial voice on animal welfare.

Guiding Principles

The Saskatchewan SPCA:

2.3.1    Accepts the use of animals by humans.

2.3.2    Generates public awareness to prevent animal suffering.

2.3.3    Promotes the mutually beneficial relationship between animals and humans.

2.3.4    Believes that animal welfare should be considered in terms of the Five Freedoms.

2.3.5    Takes a collaborative approach to achieve its mission and vision.

2.3.6    Is a transparent organization that is respected for its innovation, integrity and passion.

Bylaw No. 3     Definitions

In these Bylaws the following meanings shall pertain:

3.1       SOCIETY shall mean The Saskatchewan Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

3.2       MEMBER shall mean a member in good standing as defined in Bylaw 4.2(a).

3.3       MEMBERSHIP YEAR shall mean the calendar year.

3.4       BOARD shall mean the Board of Directors.

3.5       SECRETARY shall mean Secretary of the Board.

3.6       TREASURER shall mean Treasurer.

3.7       Whenever the singular number or the masculine gender is used, the same shall be construed as including the plural number and feminine and neuter genders respectively where the fact or the context so requires.

Bylaw No. 4     Memberships, Categories, Dues and Cancellation

4.1       Any individual or family who is in sympathy with the vision, mission and guiding principles of the Society and who is willing to uphold humane principles, is eligible to apply for Membership in the Society.

4.2       A Member in good standing for the current fiscal year is any eligible individual or family who has paid his membership dues 60 days prior to the beginning of the Annual General Meeting in that year, or who is a Life or Honorary Life Member. Any member joining after Nov 1st will have a membership expiry date of Dec 31st of the following year.

4.3       Membership classes and dues shall be set by the Board as it deems advisable from time to time.

Cancellation of Membership

4.4       The Board can, in its sole and absolute discretion, cancel the Membership of any Individual for just cause. Such cancellation of membership shall be executed at a regular meeting of the Board and shall be valid only if the said cancellation receives two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the total Board of Directors, present. Such vote shall be conducted by signed ballot. The person may appeal the decision, in writing, to the Board of Directors within thirty (30) days of being notified of the decision. The Board’s decision pursuant to this appeal is final.

Bylaw No. 5  The Board of Directors

5.1       The Board of Directors shall consist of:

5.1.1    The Officers:

(a)        The President.

(b)        The Vice-President.

(c)        The Secretary.

(d)        The Treasurer.

(e)        Other Directors elected at large from the Province.

(f)        The immediate past President shall remain an ex officio member of the Board without voting privileges for a period of one year after ceasing to hold office.

5.2       The total Board shall consist of a minimum of five (5) and a maximum of nine (9) Directors. CHANGED from “minimum of seven (7) and a maximum of eleven (11).”

5.3       To be eligible for nomination for election to the Board an individual member, resident in Saskatchewan, and having reached the age of majority, shall have been a member of the Society in good standing for a period of at least six (6) months prior to the Annual General Meeting, and shall not be a paid employee of a Saskatchewan humane society, nor a close relative of a Saskatchewan humane society employee. Close relative is hereby defined as spouse, child, parent, in-law, sibling, and/or member of the same household.

5.4       Nominations for election to the Board and acceptance by the nominees, both in writing and signed by two voting members, are to be in the hands of the Society ten (10) days prior to the date of the Annual General Meeting. At the Annual General Meeting, nominations from the floor shall be called.

Term of Office

5.5.1    The term of office for a director shall be two years. At any Annual General Meeting approximately one half of the directors shall be elected. The following year the remainder shall be elected.

5.5.2    At its first meeting the new Board shall by resolution from its numbers appoint for the appropriate term the officers named in Bylaw No. 5.1.

5.5.3    A board member may serve a maximum of three (3) consecutive terms. He may seek re-election to the Board after an absence of one year.  CHANGED from “an absence of one term.” 

Bylaw No. 6     Duties of Officers

6.1       President: The President shall be responsible to the Board and to the Executive Committee. He shall preside at all meetings. In his absence the Vice-President shall preside. Such presiding officer has only the casting vote when necessary to break a tie. The President shall be the chief executive officer of the Society unless otherwise determined by resolution of the board of directors. The chair shall be ex officio on all committees.

6.2       Vice President: The Vice-President shall take over the duties of President when that official is incapacitated or absent. He shall assist the President in every way possible in the administration of the Society.

6.3       Secretary: The Secretary shall attend to the records of the meetings of the Board of Directors and Executive. The routine duties of the Secretary may be carried out by the Office Staff, but the elected Secretary shall be responsible for them.

6.4       Treasurer: The Treasurer shall keep records of all financial transactions of the Society. He shall prepare an annual report showing a full statement of all monies received and disbursed, audited by the independent authority chosen by the Annual General Meeting of the previous year. He shall have charge of and keep safely all contracts, certificates of stock, securities, and instruments of title belonging to the Society. The routine duties listed for the Treasurer may be carried out by the Office Staff, but the elected Treasurer shall be responsible for them.

Bylaw No. 7     Responsibilities and Powers of the Board of Directors

7.1       The Board shall be responsible to the members for the good management of the affairs and business of the Society. Each Director shall act honestly and in good faith in the best interests of the Society.

7.2       The Board of Directors shall meet together regularly and a minimum of four times a year for the dispatch of business and shall regulate their meetings as they deem fit. The Board of Directors may meet on a regularly appointed date without notice but Directors shall be advised at least five (5) days prior to the date of any special meeting. A Director may, if the majority of the Directors of the Society consent, participate in a meeting of the Directors or a committee of the Directors by means of such telephone or other communication facilities to permit all persons participating in the meeting to hear each other, and a Director participating in such a meeting by such means is deemed for the purpose of this Article to be present at the meeting.

7.3       In the case that a vote of Board members is required to conduct normal business of the Society between regularly scheduled Board meetings, such a vote may be conducted by fax, email or other electronic means. The results of such a vote shall be recorded in the minutes of the next Board meeting.

7.4       The Board shall have the power to appoint any committees, special committees and auxiliaries it may deem necessary, and have the power to appoint committee members other than Board members thereto. These bodies shall be responsible to the Board.

7.5       The Board shall be responsible for the remuneration of all Society staff. CHANGED from “all society office staff.”  DELETED:  “Animal Protection Officers and others approved by the Board to assist Animal Protection Officers in the execution of their duties.”

7.6       The President shall be ex-officio member of all Committees of the Society.

7.7       The Board shall have the power to appoint such officers, agents, consultants or special representatives as it may deem necessary for carrying on the work of the Society. These appointees may be appointed with or without salary at the Board’s discretion, and shall be responsible to the President.

7.8       The Board shall have power to engage legal counsel when it is deemed necessary.

7.9       The Directors of the Society and members of committees shall not receive any remuneration for their services. The Directors and committee members shall, however, be entitled to be reimbursed for traveling and other reasonable out-of-pocket expenses incurred by them attending meetings of the Board or any committee thereof, upon proof of expenses having been supplied and upon approval by the Board of Directors.

7.10      Board Conduct: The Board subscribes to the following Code of Ethics:

To devote time, thought and study to the duties and responsibilities of a SSPCA Board member so as to render effective, creditable service.

To work with fellow Board members in a spirit of harmony and cooperation in spite of differences of opinion that may arise.

To base personal decision upon all available facts in each situation: to vote ones honest conviction in every case, unswayed by partisan bias of any kind; and to abide by and uphold the final majority decision of the Board.

To remember at all times that individual Board members have no legal authority outside the meetings of the Board, and to conduct relationships with the Board, staff, the local citizenry, and all media of the community on the basis of this fact.

To resist every temptation and outside pressure to use the position as a SSPCA Board member to benefit either personally or any other individual or agency apart from the total interest of the SSPCA. A Board member shall not use the position to benefit personally, family or friends.

7.11      Rules of Order: The Rules contained in Robert’s Rules of Order shall govern the Society in all cases to which they are applicable, and in which they are not inconsistent with the Bylaws of the Society. Whenever practical, Robert’s Rules as applied to small committees will be used.

Bylaw No. 8     Board Vacancies

8.1       The Board shall have power to fill up to three Board vacancies until the next General Meeting when the members shall have the opportunity of approving the Executive’s Board’s choice or electing new members to complete the term.

8.2.      If the office of President becomes vacant, the Vice-President shall automatically become President.

8.3.      If more than three Directors resign because of a controversy within the Board, a Special General Meeting shall be called forthwith by the Society for the purpose of electing Directors to fill the vacancies.

8.4       Any or all positions on the Board may be declared vacant by the members at a Special General Meeting as provided in Bylaw 12.3. The vacancies shall then be filled by election at the same meeting.

Bylaw No. 9     Disclosure of Conflicts of Interest of Directors

9.1       Board members shall disclose, in the discussing of or vote upon, any issue in which they have a financial or personal conflict of interest. The disclosure of such conflict of interest shall be recorded in the minutes of the meeting at which the disclosure is made.

Bylaw No. 10   Removal of a Board Member

10.1     The Board can remove any Board member from office who, in the opinion of the majority of remaining Board members, acts in a manner detrimental to the vision, mission and guiding principles of the Society, or fails to be a member in good standing for the duration of his term of office providing the Board member is given the opportunity to have a proper hearing before the Board of Directors or at special meeting of the membership and the membership votes thereon.

10.2     Any Board member absent from two (2) consecutive Board meetings without reasonable excuse may be removed from office on a majority vote of the Board. If the former Board member requests reinstatement within sixty (60) days from the date of removal, the Board may by a majority vote reinstate the Board member, but this provision can be used only once during the term of any Board member.

Bylaw No. 11   The Executive Committee

11.1     The Executive Committee shall consist of:

(a)        The President

(b)        The Vice-President

(c)        The Secretary

(d)        The Treasurer

(e)        The Executive Director (ex-officio)

11.2     The Executive Committee shall be responsible to the Board for the administration of the Society between meetings of the Board.

11.3     All minutes of the Executive Committee Meetings shall be subject to ratification at the following Board Meeting.

Bylaw No. 12   Meetings

12.1     The Annual General Meeting of the Society shall be held each year within one hundred and eighty (180) days of the end of the fiscal year, for the conduct of general business of the Society and for election of the Board of Directors.

12.2     Notice of every General Meeting of the society shall be given to every member who is entitled to vote, not less than twenty (20) days prior to the proposed date of the General meeting. Notice shall include the exact time, date and place of the General Meeting. Sufficient notice shall be considered to have been given in any of the following circumstances: personal delivery, mail delivery, electronic mail, publication of a notice in the Society newsletter, posting an announcement on the website of the Society, publication of a notice in a community newspaper.

12.3     A Special General Meeting shall be called by the Society upon receipt of a written request by any of the following:

(a)        The President or, in his absence, the Vice-President.

(b)        Any ten members who have been members for the previous twelve (12) months.

12.3.1  Written request for a Special General Meeting shall be served upon the Executive Director either by personal service or by registered mail and such service shall be affected not less than thirty (30) days prior to the date for which the meeting is to be called.

12.3.2  A request for a Special General Meeting by either of the aforementioned methods shall embody the object or objects for which the meeting is called; the latest date and time for which the meeting shall be called.

12.3.3  Upon receipt of such request, the Executive Director shall notify in writing or by electronic means all members of the Society of receipt of such request at least twenty (20) days prior to the date set out for the meeting. The notification shall specify date, time, place and agenda for the meeting.

12.3.4  A Special General Meeting shall be presided over by a Chairman appointed by the membership present at such meeting prior to any business being discussed.

12.3.5  Except as provided in 12.3.2 above, no business shall be transacted at the Special General Meeting except that for which the meeting is called.

12.3.6  Without restricting the generality of the foregoing, the objects of the Special General Meeting may include the following:

(a)        Whether or not the membership will dismiss any or all of the Board of Directors, including the President;

(b)        Any other business that may be pertinent to the operation of the Society.

Bylaw No. 13   Voting

13.1     Only those individuals or families whose names are entered on the register of the Society as members in good standing 60 days prior to any general meeting may vote at that meeting.

13.2     At all meetings of the Society, a resolution put to the vote of the meeting shall be decided by a show of voting cards, unless a poll is demanded by at least three members. In such case the questions shall be put to each member present and his vote shall be recorded in the minutes opposite his name.

13.3     At Annual General Meetings the election of the Board shall be by secret ballot, except where positions are filled by acclamation.

13.4     All other business at an Annual Meeting may be voted on as set out above in 13.2.

Bylaw No. 14   Quorums

14.1     At Executive Committee Meetings three (3) members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

14.2     At Board Meetings a majority of voting members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

14.3     At all other meetings of the Society, all those members present and in person shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

Bylaw No. 15   Committees

15.1     Committee chair persons shall be (DELETE:  “members of the Board and”) appointed by the Board.

15.2     Standing Committee members shall be approved by the Board at the first meeting following the AGM.

15.3     Terms of office shall be one year.

15.4     All committees answer to the board.

15.5     Standing committees shall include but are not limited to:

Finance

Fundraising

Education

Board Development

Communications and Public Relations (ADDED THESE TWO COMMITTEES)

Legislative

Ad Hoc committees will be created as and when needed.

Bylaw No. 16   Liability

16.1.    The Society shall not be responsible for any contract, debt, liability, act or omission of any Member, and Special Agents or Representatives appointed by the Board who are not authorized to incur any pecuniary liability to the Society without special authority from the Society.

Bylaw No. 17   Fiscal Year

17.1     The Fiscal Year of the Society shall be from April 1st to March 31st of the following year.

Bylaw No. 18   Audit of Accounts

18.1     The accounts of the Saskatchewan SPCA shall be audited each year by an auditor appointed at the Annual General Meeting.

18.2     The scope of the audit shall be determined by resolution of the Board of Directors, after consultation with the staff of the Saskatchewan SPCA and the Auditor as appointed.

Bylaw No. 19   Amendments to Bylaws

19.1     Notice of Motion for amendments to the Bylaws shall be submitted to the Society Secretary by mail or electronically, and such notice shall be post marked or recorded not less than thirty (30) days or more than fifty (50) days prior to the date of the next Annual General Meeting.

19.2     The Society shall send by mail or electronic means, notice of proposed amendments to each member not less than twenty (20) days prior to the date of the Annual General Meeting.

19.3     These Bylaws may be altered or amended only at an Annual General Meeting with the consent of two-thirds (2/3) majority of the attending members.

19.4     Bylaws become effective immediately following the AGM at which they are approved.

Bylaw No. 20   Dissolution of the Saskatchewan SPCA

20.1     In the event that the Society should cease to exist, all assets remaining after paying all debts shall be paid to another registered and charitable organization or organizations having the vision, mission and guiding principles similar to the Saskatchewan SPCA in the Province of Saskatchewan.

20.2     The Board of Directors shall in its sole and absolute discretion select the organizations to receive the remaining assets of the Saskatchewan SPCA.

20.3     No Member, Officer or Director of the Saskatchewan SPCA shall receive any of the assets of the Saskatchewan SPCA.