TCLocal Terms of Reference


TCLocal is an association whose primary purpose is to develop specific plans for responses to energy descent in Tompkins County and to advise local government and planning agencies on appropriate mitigation and adaptation strategies for a future with less available energy. The following Terms of Reference are established to ensure orderly disposition of the work of TCLocal and clear management of its collectively owned intellectual property.


A contributor to TCLocal is a person who commits to making a specific contribution to the work of TCLocal and is accepted by the group in that role. All contributors are bound by these Terms of Reference regarding any work they may contribute to TCLocal, whether related to their formal commitment or not. Inactive contributors may be removed from TCLocal by an absolute majority vote of the voting members. Any contributor may be removed from TCLocal by a 2/3 vote of the voting members or upon receipt by the chair of that member's formal resignation. All contributors are members of a private email list maintained by TCLocal.

A voting member of TCLocal is a contributor who is either (a) a member of the Tompkins County Relocalization Project under the Terms of Reference of the TCRP dated November 2005 at the time that this paragraph went into effect, or (b) a contributor who has attended two TCLocal meetings in a row (voting membership takes effect at the end of the second meeting attended). Contributors automatically lose voting membership by missing two meetings in a row and do not regain voting membership until they have attended two meetings in a row.

RROR is the 1915 edition of Robert's Rules of Order Revised, a copy of which can be found beginning at

Intellectual Property

All publishable intellectual content produced by contributors to TCLocal as part of the work of TCLocal is considered a work of TCLocal as a collective author, and all such content is considered as licensed for worldwide use under terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license version 2.5 ( Drafts between publications are considered works in progress.

Contributors to TCLocal grant permission for TCLocal to include their contributions in any and all forms in publications determined by the voting members. Contributors further grant permission for TCLocal to distribute their submissions as part of the collective works in print and electronic form, on CD-ROM and in translation, or on videocassette, broadcast, cablecast, laserdisc, multimedia, or any other media format now or hereafter known. (Not all forms of media will be used.)

In the event that any element used in a contribution contains the work of third-party individuals, the contributor understands that it is the contributor's responsibility to secure any necessary copyright permissions and/or copyright licenses and will provide them in writing to TCLocal. If the copyright holder requires a citation to a copyrighted work, the contributor warrants that he or she has obtained the correct wording and has included it in the designated space in the text.

By their participation in TCLocal, contributors release and discharge and agree to indemnify and hold harmless TCLocal, its participants, and other TCLocal sponsors and organizers from any and all liability arising out of their inclusion of any material in the publications of TCLocal or in connection with the performance of any of the activities of TCLocal. This includes, but is not limited to, right of privacy or publicity, copyright, patent rights, trade secret rights, moral rights, or trademark rights. All permissions and releases granted by the contributors to the project shall be effective in perpetuity and throughout the world, and extend and apply to TCLocal and its contributors and its assigns and to TCLocal's licensees and sublicensed distributors, successors, and agents.


TCLocal meetings shall be properly noticed and scheduled in advance. A quorum of TCLocal shall be a simple majority of the voting members. Unless otherwise specified in these Terms of Reference or in Standing Rules to be adopted by TCLocal, proceedings of TCLocal shall be conducted according to RROR, and ordinary meetings of TCLocal shall be run according to the rules specified therein for the conduct of committees. It is understood that actions of TCLocal will ordinarily be decided by consensus or near consensus and that reference to RROR will be resorted to only when consensus cannot be achieved within a reasonable period of time or is deemed by the chair to be unlikely to be achieved.

Without a quorum present, discussions may take place, but no business may be conducted; those present may act as a "Committee of the Whole" as defined in RROR and make a report to the entire TC. Attendance must be recorded in the meeting minutes. Meetings without quorum shall still count towards attendance for purposes of contributors gaining, maintaining, or losing voting rights.

Voting by email (electronic letter ballot)

The chair alone may, at his or her option, conduct formal business by email, it being understood that much business can be conducted by common consent. Any proposed action put formally before the membership via email by the chair that meets with no objection from the voting membership within a week (default letter ballot) shall at the end of that week be considered adopted by a unanimous vote of the voting members. Votes on other issues conducted by email shall be considered adopted upon reaching the criterion for approval specified for that type of question.


A chair and a secretary shall be elected by the voting members in November and May of each year. They have the general duties and functions described in RROR.

One or more editors shall be appointed by the voting members to deal with specific areas of content production and dissemination, both in print and electronically. The editors serve at the pleasure of the voting members.


These Terms of Reference may be amended by a 2/3 vote of all the members.


Last amended 26 April 2008


Copyright © 2008 TCLocal. Use of this document is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license version 2.5. An overview of the Creative Commons license can be found at

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