Hoito Restaurant Constitution and By-Laws

The Constitution and By-Laws of the Hoito Restaurant, as included in our Translation of the Minutes of the Hoito Restaurant, 1918-1920.

The Constitution of the Hoito Co-operative Restaurant

  1. This consumers’ co-operative restaurant is in Port Arthur and began operations on May 1, 1918.
  2. The purpose of this co-operative restaurant is to purchase and serve food for payment in cash.
  3. This co-operative restaurant’s membership is composed of all the co-operative restaurant’s patrons.
  4. This co-operative restaurant began operations by taking five dollar ($5.00) loans from its members until the required start-up sum was collected. These loans will be repaid later.*
  5. Those individuals who have provided a $5.00 loan and those who pay for meals in advance through the purchase of weekly tickets shall have voting rights for all issues concerning this co-operative restaurant.
  6. This co-operative restaurant shall not pay dividends to its membership and large sums of capital will not be accumulated. Only a small reserve fund of $300 to $500 will be necessary to maintain the restaurant year-round.
  7. The membership of this co-operative restaurant shall elect from among themselves a manager, a 7-member Board of Directors, and other necessary officials.
  8. The duties of the manager are to handle the co-operative restaurant’s finances, maintain bookkeeping, and fulfill tasks as instructed by the Board of Directors. The manager must also obtain a bond in an amount determined by the membership.
  9. The Board of Directors will be elected and that during every monthly meeting two members will vacate their positions and be replaced by two elected members and every three months three members will be replaced. In this way the term for a member of the Board of Directors will be three months. The Board of Directors is responsible for all of the co-operative restaurant’s assets.
  10. These rules can be amended or supplemented at a membership meeting by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote.

* This section was crossed out in the original document, likely after the loans had been repaid.

By-Laws Concerning Management

I. The Board of Directors will supervise management in the following ways:

a) The Board of Directors members shall hold the cash register key.

b) Each member of the Board of Directors shall in turn count the cash [after dinner] when the restaurant is closed, with the following procedure:

  1. The weekly ticket stubs that were sold that day are to be counted and the weekly tickets to be sold for the following day are to be given to the cashier.
  2. The cash register tape is to be counted and reviewed to ensure that the sales for that day matches the number of tickets sold.
  3. The revenue for the entire day is to be calculated with the manager; the manager’s and cashier’s daily count is to be reviewed and compared with the revenue for the entire day, from which it will be seen if any errors were made in handling cash, and if someone taking care of the till has made an error they must be informed of this.
  4. Finally, a clear count must be compiled for that day, dated, and signed by the auditor.
  5. The duties of the auditor also include presenting this information alongside the manager’s activity report.

II. The manager’s duties and their supervision.

a) The manager cannot run the till except for during his shift, and cannot exchange money at the till alone without the cashier’s consent.

b) The manager must be present when the cashier’s shifts start and end to ensure that the cash is counted correctly. Similarly, in the evenings the manager must be present to
receive the cash and to record the day’s revenue in the logbook, at which point the Board
of Directors member whose turn it is to serve as auditor must be present to ensure that this is recorded correctly.

c) The manager must deposit the previous day’s revenue daily in the bank. The auditor must ensure every evening that the sum from the previous day has been deposited in the bank by reviewing the bankbook.

d) The manager cannot withdraw a penny from the bank, nor can the manager sign for a
withdrawal unless it is validated by a Board of Directors member with signing authority.

e) All bills are to be paid through the bank. If smaller expenditures arise from time-to-time, that cannot be paid through the bank but rather must be paid in cash, the double receipt method must be used.

f) The manager will have some amount of money with which to change large and small
amounts at the till when it is needed.


These rules are to be presented on the last page of the consumers’ restaurant minute book.

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