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Biding by the rules
June 27, 2019
Behind every successful Association are rules and regulations. The Old Colonists’ was no exception – with a total of 23 rules laid out in its first annual report.
The 23 rules were a mixture of constitutional agreements, who could stand as officers of the Association, and who could become a life governor.
The catalogue of instructions provides an interesting glimpse into the thinking of the Founders, with equity and social justice evident throughout the document. The election of President, Vice-President and Treasurer were to be elected annually by the Council and one-third of the members of Council were to retire annually by rotation. However, they could also stand for re-election.
Part of the driving force behind the rules was the essential need to raise funds. Rule 5, for instance, insists that all annual subscriptions are payable in advance from 1 July of each year. Rule 4 spells out that none of the 15-member Council should be paid for their services to the Association.
Ship Captains trading regularly to the colony before 1 July 1851 were to be viewed as Old Colonists once they became resident in Victoria.
A registration book was established for members. The book – still in existence today – notes the date of the arrival in the colony, their profession or occupation, their deaths, births of children, and any public mark of distinction or honour conferred.
Keith White, who had heart surgery two years ago, reckons he’s better now than he has ever been. He puts his state of health and well-being down to the life he has found at Currie Park, OCAV’s village in Euroa.