Note: The Bylaws were submitted to the membership for approval following revision by the Executive Committee and approved by ballot on October 3, 2007.


1.1 Name

The name of the Division shall be the Federal Planning Division (FPD) of the American Planning Association (APA). This title shall be used on all official Division correspondence, documents, publications, or other relevant materials.

1.2 Objectives

  • To provide a forum for planners involved in the development and/or implementation of comprehensive planning and land management policies, techniques, and procedures at federal properties located within the United States and abroad.
  • To support and promote all federal planning programs that protect and enhance federal properties and that improve the quality of life of the many individuals who live on, work on, and/or use federal lands and facilities.
  • To foster positive economic, environmental, and social relationships between federal properties and their adjacent non-federal communities or areas.
  • To support and promote all federal planning programs which provide technical and/or financial assistance to state, regional and local communities in the United States, and to both US interests and national governments abroad.

1.3 Coordination with APA/AICP

  • The Division will support all relevant APA national goals, objectives, and policies by bringing a Federal perspective to such issues as appropriate.
  • The Division will work together with APA leadership, divisions, and chapters to further their mutual objectives.
  • The Division will assist in promoting certification of its members in the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP), and will assist its members in maintaining their AICP certification.
  • The Division will ensure professional development training, including AICP continuing education credits, is provided through the APA National Conference and the FPD National Training Conference.
  • The Division will assist, as requested, the Planning Accreditation Board (PAB) in the accrediting process to ensure planning programs that encourage addressing federal planning related issues.

1.4 Procedures

Robert’s Rules of Order shall govern parliamentary procedure.


2.1 Eligibility

All APA members and other persons interested in the Division may join upon payment of dues. All voting Division members must belong to APA. Individuals who wish to support the Division’s activities may receive all membership services as Subscribing Members, but may not vote on any Division business.

2.2 Termination

Membership will be terminated upon failure to pay Division dues.

2.3 Types of Membership

  • APA Division Member: An FPD member in good standing that is a member of APA is a voting member of FPD and may serve as a Division officer or appointed committee member.
  • Non-APA Division Member: An FPD member that is not a member of APA is not a voting member and cannot hold an elected or appointed office in the Division.


3.1 Elected Officers and Terms of Office

The rules regulating elected offices are:

1) Chair, Chair-Elect, Immediate Past Chair, and Secretary/Treasurer Officers must be members of the Association and the Division during their terms in office.

2) Division officers should not hold other elected positions within APA, with the exception of Immediate Past Chair who is eligible for Division Council office

3) With the exception of the Secretary/Treasurer, terms of office shall be for one year beginning April 30th or at the annual business meeting, whichever occurs first.

4) Terms of office for the Secretary/ Treasurer shall be for two years, beginning April 30th or at the annual business meeting, of odd-numbered years whichever occurs first. No elected officer shall hold a position for more than two consecutive terms.

3.2 Chair

The Chair shall: preside at all Division meetings; prepare an annual program and budget for approval by the Executive Committee; develop a long-range strategic plan; appoint committee chairs and committee members for the following: Publications, Nominations, By-Laws, Awards, Scholarships, Historian, Legislative Liaison, Professional Development, Membership Fellows, and others as required; assess the need for research, government relations, and contacts with related organizations; serve on the APA Division Council; and is responsible for complying with requirements in the APA Corporate Bylaws.

3.3 Chair-Elect

The Chair-Elect assists the Chair and coordinates committee activities. In the event of absence or resignation of the Chair, the Chair-Elect becomes the Chair. The Chair-Elect will assume primary responsibility for new member recruiting and is the principal coordinator for that year’s annual conference.

3.4 Immediate Past Chair

The Immediate Past Chair will advise and assist the Chair in any business of the Division program at the annual APA Conference and serve as a member of the Executive Committee Emeritus after their term as long as they remain members in good standing of both the Association and the Division.

3.5 Secretary/Treasurer

The Secretary/Treasurer shall: prepare minutes of Executive Committee and Division meetings; notify members of upcoming meetings; submit proposed bylaws and amendments to the membership; be responsible for tabulating votes, except for the election of officers, by Division members; assist the Chair in preparing an annual budget; maintain financial records which can be audited and prepare an annual financial report, receive and disburse funds in accordance with the budget, and assure that all required filings are sent to APA staff.

3.6 Succession

The Chair-Elect succeeds the Chair. If vacancies occur, the Executive Committee fills all other positions by majority vote.

3.7 Nominations

A Nominating Committee, consisting of three or more Division members, shall be appointed by the Chair at least three months prior to the annual Division business meeting of each year. The Division’s Immediate Past Chair serves as the Chair of the Nominating Committee. The Nominating Committee’s mandate is to evaluate, and recommend for inclusion on the ballot, those individuals expressing an interest in running for office. Potential candidates will be determined by a general broadcast (email, newsletter, and/or otherwise) to the entire membership soliciting information regarding member status, office of interest, and a brief biography. After reviewing the information, the Nominating Committee will then put forward for inclusion on the ballot at least one person for each available office. Additional candidates may be nominated by petition, signed by at least 20 members of the Division. Members of the Nominating Committee shall not be eligible for office during the period they serve on the committee. The Chair of the Nominating Committee, in conjunction with the Secretary-Treasurer, will review and approve the ballot, , ensure it is sent to all Division members eligible to vote, establish a date for all ballots to be received, and tally the votes. Election results are based on a plurality of the valid ballots received. Write-in candidates are also allowed.

3.8 Termination of Division Officers

In the event that a Division Officer is unable to perform his/her duties and or/not functioning within the guidelines of their elected position outlined by the Division By-Laws, the subject Division Officer shall be terminated from his/her position by the majority vote of the Executive Committee.


4.1 Composition

The Executive Committee shall consist of: the Chair, Chair-Elect, Immediate Past Chair, the Secretary/Treasurer, Director of Publications, and Membership Coordinator.

4.2 Duties

The Executive Committee shall: manage the affairs of the Division; adopt an annual program and budget; and authorize expenditures consistent with the budget.

4.3 Meetings

Meetings of the Executive Committee shall be called by the Chair, or by a majority of the Committee members. A majority of the Executive Committee shall constitute a quorum. Electronic or remote meeting methods are acceptable.

The annual business meeting of the Division will be held in conjunction with the APA national conference. Installation of officers, proposed changes in dues, presentation of financial reports, changes in bylaws, and other appropriate business will be conducted at that meeting.


5.1 Director of Publications

The Chair shall appoint, subject to approval by the Executive Committee by majority vote, a Director of Publications, whose responsibility is to seek out articles and materials, edit, publish, and distribute a Division newsletter, and otherwise assist other members of the Executive Committee to publicize the activities of the Division. The Director of Publications may also serve as webmaster for the Division website.

5.2 Membership Coordinator

The Membership Coordinator, appointed by the division chairman, is responsible maintaining the Federal Planning Division Rolls, fostering opportunity to enroll new members and creating a vehicle for membership feedback to the Federal Planning Division leadership. The coordinator maintains current information provided by the APA national roster, contact with members at Federal Planning Division Events, the division website and periodic electronic newsletters. The coordinator is responsible for managing initiatives to seek out new membership through contact with educational institutions and APA events. Through the use of an annual membership survey, the Membership Coordinator compiles membership demographics, current issues of interest to the members, and general assessment of services provided by the Federal Planning Division. This information is reported to the board with recommendations on the next years strategy for increasing division membership.

5.3 Awards Committee Chair

The Chair shall appoint annually, subject to approval by the Executive Committee, an Awards Officer, whose responsibility is to seek out nominations of distinguished projects and individuals within the Division to compete for annual Division awards and organize the annual awards program. The Awards Officer will coordinate with the awards selection jury and will preside at the awards presentation at the annual Division workshop.

5.4 Agency Representatives

The Chair shall appoint, subject to approval by the Executive Committee, Agency Representatives to represent each Federal Agency or organization having members in FPD and consultant members. The Representatives are to solicit new members for the Division, act as a means to forward information from the Executive Committee to their agencies or firms, and bring agency/firm issues to the attention of the Executive Committee. Additionally, Liaison Officers will cross-feed ideas/suggestions within their agencies/consultant membership, and submit items of interest to the Division newsletter and other means of publicity.


6.1 Composition

The Executive Committee Emeritus shall consist of the past chairs who remain members in good standing after their term as Immediate Past Chair concludes.

6.2 Duties

The Executive Committee Emeritus shall serve as a non-voting advisory body to the Executive Committee.


7.1 Dues

Annual dues are set by the APA Board consistent with the dues for all APA Divisions. Dues are collected by National APA and are rebated quarterly to the Division.

7.2 Non-Dues Receipts

Subject to approval by the Executive Committee and by National APA, the Division may accept contributions, donations, and/or grants. The Executive Committee may establish fees for publications and services to be offered to non-members, or as special services to members.

7.3 Contracts

Divisions may not enter into agreements or contracts with organizations outside of APA, without knowledge and prior review by National APA.

7.4 Budget Cycle

Division budget shall be on the same calendar year cycle as the APA budget cycle, ending on December 31st of each year.


8.1 Newsletter

The Federal Planners NETWORK newsletter or comparable publication shall be distributed to members of the Division 3 times a year (Summer, Fall and Winter). The membership is encouraged to submit articles of federal, state, regional, and local activities including significant legislation, decisions, etc.; reviews of reports produced by planning agencies, consultants, or others; or articles produced by members and ready for publication.

8.2 Other Publications

The annual conference notebook (which counts along with the 3 issues of the Federal Planners NETWORK as the 4 annual publications required by APA), flyers publicizing the Division and any other publications authorized by the Executive Committee, will be produced to help promote the objectives of the Division as appropriate.

8.3 Division Website

The Division will establish and maintain a website, linked to the APA national website and others as appropriate. Information of importance to Division members will be posted on the website along with information on the purpose, structure, and operations of the Federal Planning Division. The webmaster will be selected by the Executive Committee.

8.4 Identification

Division publications shall be identified with their full name as “a Division of the American Planning Association”, and with the uniform logotype of the Association.

8.5 Filing with National APA

Copies of each publication or report shall be filed with National APA.


9.1 Representing the Division

No member shall represent the Division or APA on matters of policy without first obtaining the approval of the Executive Committee and National APA.


10.1 Process for Amending

Bylaws may be amended by a plurality of valid ballots received. Mail or electronically transmitted ballots shall be used. The Secretary/Treasurer submits to the membership all proposed amendments, as recommended by the Executive Committee, or by petition, signed by at least ten Division members for a vote. A copy of proposed Bylaws or amendments shall be filed with National APA for review, before adoption and refilled after adoption with the date of certification.