We’ve been advised by National Grange that prices for these are increasing as of January 2015. Silver Star and Seals will be $2.50, Gold Sheaf and 75 Year Award will be $3.50, and 100 & 125 Year Grange Hall will be $4.00. Please check with State Secretary Sharon for more information. (Remember, your order for these materials must be sent to Maine State Grange.) A new order form will be available soon! (Check the “program books and information” page under the secretary heading.)
Please look over the Distinguished Grange applications as the June 30 is the last day for this year’s application. The application year runs from July 1, 2013-June 30, 2014. If you have new members waiting for degrees check around for Degree days before the deadline or organize one at you grange. Any new members may give your grange a net gain for the year. As I have mentioned previously, there are many Granges in Maine that qualify for the award so please complete the application and send to State Grange or myself. We need 10 qualified Granges in Maine to complete the “challenge” by National Grange. Let’s have fun doing this every year!
Membership is increasing in many Granges. If you have members in waiting, please do not make them wait. In your efforts to get new members do your best. Sometimes it doesn’t take much effort at all. At the recent State Spirit of America event in Augusta, I noticed a lady standing alone watching the ending of the event. I started talked to her and discovered that her mother had liked attend the annual event previously. This lady said that for herself she had free time now and wanted something rewarding to do with her time. Of course being membership minded, the bells and whistles went off in my head. We talked about Grange, I got her address, sent her an application (guess I wasn’t too membership minded or I would have had one on me) and connected her with a grange in her town. So, in conversations with friends, family, and people you have just met, TALK GRANGE! It could lead to a new member. Speak with pride and joy of your Grange. It will be noticed. Wear clothing that advertises the Grange in public. Who knows if someone would come up to you and ask you about Grange. It does happen! Do something unique for your community that will always be connected with Grange. Open your halls for functions whether grange related or not.
Finally, I do want to congratulate those grange members who were honored for volunteerism in their communities at the annual Spirit of America event. Keep up the great work and thank you! For those who were present you might have been shown on WABI Channel 5 news that same evening. Hope you all head into the warmer weather with many rewarding plans for your Granges!
When was the last time an audit was performed in your Grange? Many cannot answer this question. Some will say “An audit? On what?” It is mandatory, as noted in the State by-laws, that any monies handled by any officer of your Subordinate and Pomona Granges be audited at least once a year. This is a specific duty of your Executive Committee or finance committee. Should your Grange need assistance in performing an audit, contact your deputy, Pomona, or neighboring Grange. An audit is NOT to be done by the officers of the Grange under audit who are in charge of handling a monetary account. The treasurer’s and secretary’s books should match and any transactions in your checkbooks should be compared to the monthly bank statements. The secretary’s books are to be signed by those performing the audit as well as the date of the audit.
Whenever officers change, especially the treasurer or the secretary, an audit should be done as soon as possible before the new officer takes charge of the books. If anything should happen concerning the finances of your grange and you took the office without having an audit performed, the new officer could be liable for any shortages. Always have an audit done before doing any monetary transactions as the new Treasurer. It is extremely important that the audit be done for the protection of the officer handling the monies and to ensure that your Grange is operating correctly. Don’t put yourself and your Grange at risk. Many potential problems and difficulties can be avoided by having a simple audit done at least once a year.
AUGUSTA – Numerous Maine corporations have received mailings recently from a business operating under the name Corporate Records Service, whose address is usually listed as 125 Western Ave. #338 Augusta, ME 04330-7252. These unsolicited mailings include a form titled “2014 – Annual Records Solicitation Form” and an offer from Corporate Records Service to prepare documents “to satisfy the annual corporate records for your corporation” for a fee of $125. This is not being sent on behalf of the Department of the Secretary of State, and the records described are not required to be filed with the Secretary of State.
The solicitation correctly states that Corporate Records Services is not a government agency. However, the form of the mailing and the way the information is presented may create the impression that this is an official government communication. The form provided by Corporate Records Service is not a document prescribed or recognized by the Department of the Secretary of State.
The form provided by Corporate Records Service is not an official annual report and will not be accepted as an annual report if submitted to the Secretary of State’s Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions. Additionally, the preparation of these records does not satisfy the requirements to file the annual report with the Secretary of State. The legal deadline to file annual reports with the Secretary of State’s office is June 1st, and those reports may be filed on line: http://icrs.informe.org/nei-sos-icrs/ICRS .
Please contact the Division of Corporations at (207) 624-7752 should you have any further questions or concerns regarding these solicitations. Any corporation that has questions about the solicitation is also encouraged to obtain advice from its lawyer or business advisor.
Most Granges have or have had a seal. Not the kind that swims in the water and balances a ball on its nose–the kind used to “emboss” certificates and official documents. If you’ve ever had a document notarized, you’ve watched the notary use one.
We’ve had some questions recently about seals and some Grange folks have contributed some answers. (We’re building several unofficial teams of folks with a lot of knowledge about the Grange… if you’d like to participate from time to time, send the webmaster an email!)
What are the Grange seals used for?
Steve Verrill tells us that when his grandmother was secretary she sealed every receipt she wrote! Unfortunately seals have fallen in disuse, one reason they often disappear. But you can use the seal for a wide range of documents including certificates, membership cards, etc. A little research reveals that old seals are considered collectible and often used for bookends!
Where is our seal?
Good question! Try that closet in the back of the hall where no one has looked in for years… Piscataquis Pomona found their seal a few years ago and we didn’t even know it was lost. It turned up at the home of one of our former secretaries and she contacted us when she found it! In the ideal world it would probably be kept in the secretary’s desk at the hall. (Pomona Granges will need to be a bit creative on this point. Piscataquis Pomona has a suitcase that contains regalia, books, etc. and the Master or Steward makes certain it goes to every meeting.)
What if we really can’t find it?
It is possible to order a new seal. State Secretary Sharon tells us to, “contact Monroe Classic at www.monroeclassic.com and when on website go to hotels and Grange store. Click on ‘Grange’ and when directed to the Grange site click on ‘Grange Basics’ and that should bring you right to the page where you can order a replacement or new Grange seal. The information that is needed is shown and they range in price from $34.95 to $40.95.” Seals can be used with or without the gold medallion stickers which are available at most office supply stores.
Submitted by Sharon Manley, State Secretary
As many of you have noted the new 2013 Roster has not been made available as of this date. Please be patient as I have just finished updating all information that should have been received in July 2012. It will be going to the printers. No more updates and if your information is incorrect I apologize for the errors. No grange has been left out of the mailing of this periodical. Thank you all for your patience.
Many thanks to Overseer Vicky Huff for passing this press release from the Secretary of State along… Don’t fall for it!
The Secretary of State’s office has received calls regarding the legitimacy of solicitations that are being mailed to numerous Maine corporations from a company named Corporate Records Service. These solicitations urge corporations to file information and send payment in the amount of $125.00 by a certain date in order to complete corporate meeting minutes on behalf of the corporation.
These solicitations also include statute citations regarding corporate records and annual meetings. At first glance, this solicitation may look official; however, some of the information being requested is not required to be filed with the Secretary of State. Maine corporations are not required to file corporate minutes with the Secretary of State’s office. We want to alert all entities of this deceptive solicitation to prevent entities from feeling compelled to complete the form and send payment to a mailing center post office box address by the deadline on the form.
Annual Reports are required to be filed with the Secretary of State’s office on or before June 1st of each year. Secretary Dunlap encourages all entities on record with the Secretary of State’s office to review “Filing Requirement Reminders” available on the web at http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/corp/helpful.html.
Additionally, please keep in mind that any official notice received from the Secretary of State’s office will contain the Maine state seal, the Secretary of State’s name, and contact information for the Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions.
Please contact the Division of Corporations at 207-624-7752 should you have any questions or concerns regarding these solicitations.
Brothers and Sisters,
It is once again time to file your e-post card IRS Form 990-N. You can do so by going to the following web site:
All subordinate granges are required to do this by January 15th. Sister Sharon Manley does this for many granges but if you know your information you can do it yourself or you can obtain your ID# from Sister Sharon and set it up yourself. The steps are fairly simple.
Please pass this info along to Granges that may not be signed up to receive post from the Maine State Grange website.
I would like all secretaries to take the time to carefully look over the membership list for your grange. Make any and all corrections and return to me so that I can update the mailing addresses.
Due to the fact that the National Grange requires all requests for membership recognition on the proper form and the grange seal I must inform you that I will not be able to take any requests for the recognitions from National Grange over the internet. I have also found that due to the fact that I may overlook a request sent to me via the internet please do not wait until a month or two has lapsed before contacting me.
The following omissions or corrections to the Roster are as follows: Jeanne Burnham, Sec., Saco Grange #53, 56 County Rd., Scarborough ME 04074 Tel: 207-839-4300; York Pomona: Leslie Guy, Master, 56 Worster Rd., Berwick Me 03901; Green Mountain Pomona meets the 2nd Saturday w/ 6PM supper & 7PM meeting; State Grange Masters new cell phone number: 207-485-1330; Mousam Lake #467: Melissa Baldwin, 8 Guillemette St., Sanford Me 04073 Tel: 207-324-4661
Thank you for being patient and please call if you have any questions or concerns regarding any matter relating to your grange membership.
April is Grange Month and request for Continuous Membership Certificates are coming in. Please get them to me early so that National Grange has time to process and return for your presentations.
I have completed all 990-N e-postcards for Subordinate and Pomona Granges. I f you have had trouble in completing your filing please contact me and I will see that it is completed for you. If you would like a copy for your records I will be glad to furnish you with one. Quarterly Dues will once again be due March 30, 2012. Mailing of your quarterly report forms along with a list of your membership will be sent to you shortly. Please update the list of members and return to me to update our records.
Fundraising has begun for the 2013 National Grange Convention to be held in Keene, NH. As Maine is part of the North East Division of the National Grange we must help in fundraising. The North East Connection Committee State Coordinator, Vicki Huff, and I are the contact people for purchase of our fundraising items. The items that are available for sale are as follows:
- Teal T-shirts: 1-S, 1-M, 1-L, 5-XL 3-2XL
- Brick T-shirts: 2-S, 3-M, 3-L, 3-XL
- Sandstone crew neck sweatshirts: 5-S, 6-M, 6-L, 5-XL, 1-2XL, 1-3XL
- Forest zip sweatshirts: 2-S
- Black polo shirts: 1-S, 2-L, 1-2XL
- Burgundy polo shirts: 3-M, 1-L, 1-XL
T-Shirts S – XL are $14, XXL is $16, XXXL is $18
Crew Neck Sweatshirts all sizes are $22
Zip Sweatshirts all sizes are $28
Polo Shirts S – XL are $25, XXL – XXXL $27
Check is made payable to “The North East Connection” and mailed to State Headquarters.