General Orders and Department Communications # 3
General Orders # 3 
To:                Posts and Districts
From:          Commander, Department of Massachusetts VFW
Date:            August 1, 2019
Subject:       General Orders # 3

General Orders #3-2019

ELECTION REPORTS: Per Section 213 of the National By-Laws, Posts that have not submitted a properly completed Post Election Report by June 1 are in arrears and will be suspended in accordance of the National by-laws.

ELECTED & APPOINTED OFFICERS : Per section 216 of the National by-laws, all Posts must have all positions filled. Please note that no member can hold two (2) elected positions. In addition: Post Trustees shall not be eligible to serve as an elected officer or adjutant. 

POST OFFICERS DUES: Pursuant to the provisions of Section 215 of the National By-Laws: Post officers who fail to pay current year’s dues will be removed from office and will forfeit their eligibility to hold any office for the remainder of the administrative year. Please ensure that your officers who are annual members, pay their dues thru 6/30/2020.

POST BONDING: Attention of commanders is directed to section 703 of the National By-Laws which requires that each accountable officer be bonded with an indemnity company in the sum at least equal to the amount of the liquid assets for which they may be accountable.
POST INCORPORATION:  Every Post and District must be incorporated. Incorporation papers must be filed every year. No Exceptions. This is for your protection. Incorporation forms and website links can be found on the state website  www.vfwma.org
 
POST INSPECTIONS:  Section 518 provides that the Department Inspector shall require that each Post be inspected in accordance with Department and National guidelines. The purpose of the inspection is to assure that the Post operates in a manner that supports the purposes set forth in the Congressional Charter, complies with the By-Laws, preserves the financial integrity of the Post and protects the interests of the member. Every Post is expected to be inspected at least once each year. It is the duty of the District Inspector to notify the Post Commander, Quartermaster, Adjutant and Trustees of the date and time that the inspection is scheduled. The inspector should allow you sufficient time to prepare for the visit. The Post inspection will go a lot smoother if it is conducted at some time other than a Post meeting night. If, for any reason, a Post cannot be inspected thoroughly, a report stating the facts must be submitted. It is the responsibility of the Post Quartermaster and Post Adjutant to provide the records necessary to complete the duties of Inspector. When the inspection of a Post is completed, the Post Inspection Form will be made out in triplicate. The yellow copy will be mailed to the Post Commander and a copy should be retained for your files.

UPDATE MANUAL OF PROCEDURE : The passage of Manual of Procedure Amendment M-30 has modified Section 1001(25) to read, “The dispensation and/or consumption of alcoholic beverages or the use of smoking/vaping products in VFW meeting rooms during VFW meetings are prohibited

For all Veterans & Military Support program information and forms, use provided link below:
VMS Formstack Links:
· MAP Grant Application: www.vfw.org/MAPGrantApplication
· MAP Grant Report: www.vfw.org/MAPGrantReport
· Adopt a Unit Application: www.vfw.org/AdoptAUnitApp
· Adopt a Unit Report: www.vfw.org/AdoptAUnitReport
 
Every Post chartered by the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States will be expected to participate in the following programs during the 2019-20 year: Voice of Democracy, Patriots Pen, Smart/Maher VFW National Citizenship Education Teachers’ Awards, “Buddy”® Poppy and Veterans and Military Support Programs. Additionally, it is necessary that all Post and Department Commanders comply with all provisions of the National By-laws and the Manual of Procedure and Ritual.

VOICE OF DEMOCRACY AND PATRIOT’S PEN NATIONAL AWARDS . Every Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen first place Department winner will receive a National scholarship or award. The new amount for the Voice of Democracy National Awards now total $154,000 and the Patriot’s Pen National Awards total is now $55,000.

NEW VOICE OF DEMOCRACY AND PATRIOT’S PEN THEMES . The 2019-20 themes have been chosen by Senior Vice Commander-in-Chief William J. “Doc” Schmitz. The Voice of Democracy and the Patriot’s Pen theme will be “What Makes America Great.” The new 2019-20 Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen entry forms are now available on the VFW website.

Additionally, anyone (including students, parents, teachers, and chairmen) can download and print the student entry forms for Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen by visiting the below links: Voice of Democracy: http://www.vfw.org/VOD/ Patriot’s Pen: http://www.vfw.org/PatriotsPen/ NEW VOICE OF DEMOCRACY AND PATRIOT’S PEN BROCHURES.

For Voice of Democracy and Patriot Pen brochures, posters, awards and more, visit the VFW store:

 
NEW SMART/MAHER VFW NATIONAL CITIZENSHIP EDUCATION TEACHER AWARD DEADLINE DATES . The VFW wants to recognize the nation’s top elementary, junior high and high school teachers (teaching at least half of the school day in a classroom environment) who teach citizenship education topics regularly and promote America’s history, traditions and institutions effectively through the Smart/Maher VFW National Citizenship Education Teacher Award program. Now is the time to begin locating exceptional teachers for your Post to nominate for the next competition. Nominations can be submitted by fellow teachers, VFW Posts, supervisors or other interested individuals (not relatives). Self-nominees are not eligible.

Please verify that all websites, publications, announcements, etc. has the correct teacher award entry deadlines for the 2019-20 program year. The dates are October 31, 2019, for entries to the Post, November 15, 2019, for completion of Post judging, December 15, 2019, for completion of District judging, January 10, 2020, for completion of Department judging and the Department winners are due to National Headquarters by January 15, 2020. The entry forms are up on the VFW website and are available in the VFW Store.

NEW SMART/MAHER VFW NATIONAL CITIZENSHIP EDUCATION TEACHER AWARD SUBMISSION CHANGE .

POST LEVEL
NATIONAL CITIZENSHIP EDUCATION TEACHERS AWARD – submit an entry in all three categories (K-5, 6-8, and 9-12) advanced to District judging. (Any Post can donate $75 to National in lieu of each entry**.)
**Donations made to replace a Voice of Democracy, Patriot’s Pen, National Citizenship Education Teachers Award and towards Veterans & Military Support Programs Services as listed above will only be accepted through the following link. Do not donate through your Department or by any other means. https://VFWPrograms.formstack.com/forms/vfw_programs_donation

DISTRICT
NATIONAL CITIZENSHIP EDUCATION TEACHERS AWARD – submit an entry in all three categories (K-5, 6-8, and 9-12) advanced to Department judging. (Overseas District donate $100 to National in lieu of each entry**.)
**Donations made to replace a Voice of Democracy, Patriot’s Pen, National Citizenship Education Teachers Award and towards Veterans & Military Support Programs Services as listed above will only be accepted through the following link. Do not donate through your Department or by any other means. https://VFWPrograms.formstack.com/forms/vfw_programs_donation

COMMANDER’S TESTIMONIAL DINNER : You are cordially invited to the State Commander’s testimonial Dinner on Saturday, September 28, 2019 starting at 5:30PM with cocktails and dinner at 6:00PM. Menu: . Cost is $40.00 per person. Table of 8 available. RSVP by September 13th to 617-727-2612 or secretary@vfwma.org (click here to register)

HOTEL: For those who are attending the Membership Training or the Commander’s Testimonial Dinner on Saturday, September 28, 2019, Hotels Rooms are available at the Doubletree-Leominster 978-534-9000 (USE CODE VFW) for both Friday and Saturday nights at $105.00 per night.
 
PATRIOT DAY, SEPTEMBER 11 . Per Presidential Proclamation, September 11, is designated as “Patriot Day.” The President requests the flag of the United States to be flown at half-staff (sunrise to sunset) and a moment of silence observed in honor of the individuals who lost their lives on that day due to terrorist attacks on the United States. For flags and other patriotic items, click here http://www.vfwstore.org/category/patriotic/miscpatriotic .

NATIONAL POW/MIA RECOGNITION DAY, SEPTEMBER 20 . Posts should conduct an appropriate ceremony. Information on conducting a ceremony can be found in the current VFW Manual of Procedure. For POW/MIA merchandise, click http://www.vfwstore.org/category/memorial/pow-mia .
 
VFW BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION : National VFW Day is observed annually on September 29, honoring the men and women devoted to this valuable organization and those members who have served our nation. Consider holding an event to mark this occasion.

ACTION CORP: If you are not already an Action Corps Advocate, we urge you to sign up to receive our VFW Action Corps Weekly which will keep you informed about the work we are doing on your behalf on Capitol Hill. By staying connected, you will be the first to know what is happening in Washington regarding legislation that impacts the lives of veterans and their families, and you will be able to assist in our grassroots efforts by responding when we send out any Action Alerts.
To become an Action Corps Advocate and receive the VFW Action Corps Weekly, sign up at: http://capwiz.com/vfw/mlm/signup.htm .

FACEBOOK: Make sure you ‘like’ and ‘share’ the VFW Department of Massachusetts Facebook page. We post updates, links, contest reminders, events, etc. for you. Share the good news of the VFW:

In your Comradeship,                                                                                    
Jeff Najarian
Department Commander
Veterans of Foreign Wars

Attest: Bill LeBeau
           State Adjutant


NEWSPAPER DEADLINE IS AUGUST 15TH
Send us your post and district event photos with captions.
(all photos must have captions describing the event and who is in the picture)
EMAIL TO: communications@vfwma.org
Massachusetts VFW | Website