By-laws


SAN DIEGO COUNTY MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. DEMOCRATIC CLUB

 

BY-LAWS

 

ARTICLE I

The name of this organization shall be Martin Luther King, Jr. Democratic Club, aka MLK Democratic Club (hereinafter referred to as “Club”).

 

ARTICLE II PURPOSE

The purpose of this club shall be to foster democratic ideals by stimulating active interest in the Democratic Party, support the party platform, contribute to party leadership and responsibility, provide a constructive role for the members in Democratic politics, and to promote an activist base. The club shall also engage in activities aimed at protecting civil rights and promoting social justice. The MLK Democratic Club will encourage, foster, and consider endorsing candidates and issues relating to the advancement of civil rights, community improvement, community opportunities, and affirmative action. The Club’s goal is to make a difference in our community, our country and the world.

 

ARTICLE III MEMBERSHIP

SECTION I – ELIGIBILITY

Anyone who is registered as a Democrat in the State of California shall be eligible for membership in this Club.

SECTION 2 – GOOD STANDING

Everyone who is eligible to be a member of this Club, whose annual dues are currently paid, and have attended two-thirds of the meetings within the last 90 days shall be a member in good standing. In addition any Lifetime members prior to 2015 shall remain Lifetime members. A person must be a member of the Club at least 90 days to vote and to run for elected office.

SECTION 3 – DUES

The amount of the annual membership dues shall be set by the Club membership each year at the general meeting in October. Dues are payable upon joining the Club and, thereafter, annually at the beginning of each calendar year. Renewing members shall pay the full amount (100%) establish for annual dues regardless of renewal date. Members joining the Club for the first time after June 30th of each year shall pay 50% of the amount established for annual dues.

SECTION 4 – VOTING

No proxy voting shall be permitted.

 

ARTICLE IV OFFICERS

SECTION 1 – ELECTED OFFICERS

Elected officers of this Club shall be the President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer. Each elected officer shall hold office for two years.

SECTION 2 – DUTIES

A-President

The president shall be the Chief Executive Officer of the Club. He or she shall preside over all meetings of the Club and the Executive Board; make appointments to other positions as required; and act as official spokesperson of the Club. The president shall pre-approve any written correspondence on behalf of the Club. In addition, the President shall stimulate active interest in the political process, provide a constructive role for the members; contribute to effective leadership and individual responsibility; and promote harmony among the Club membership, and engage with other clubs and within the San Diego County Democratic party.

  1. Vice-President

The Vice-President shall serve at the direction of the president. He or she shall preside at meetings if the President is unable to do so, or if requested by the President to do so. The Vice-President shall take over the duties of President in the absence of that officer, and is responsible for the annual audit. The Vice President shall also be responsible for the programs of the Club, chair the Programs Committee and the Youth Committee.

  1. Secretary

The Secretary shall keep the minutes of the general meetings and Executive Board meetings, prepare correspondence, maintain the Club’s records, and be responsible for internal communications, including distribution of agendas, minutes, and announcements. The Secretary shall maintain a compendium of bylaws, standing rules, resolutions and policies adopted by the Executive Board or the membership; conduct e-mail votes of the Executive Board as directed by the President, pursuant to the procedures specified in the Board Policies; and perform such other duties as the President may direct. The secretary must possess effective computer skills and will have access to the passwords for the email accounts.

  1. Treasurer

The Treasurer shall be responsible for the collection of the dues, receive and deposit all Club funds; maintain an accurate record of Club receipts and expenditures; sign all checks as authorized by the Executive Board; make the record of Club receipts and expenditures available to any member when requested; provide a report of Club financial status at Club meetings as requested; prepare an annual budget; provide an annual written report of the Club’s financial status; and make the books and all other financial records of the Club available to Audit Committee each year. In addition, the Treasurer shall be responsible for filing appropriate Federal and State campaign disclosure reports. The Treasurer should have experience with computer accounting programs such as Quicken, QuickBooks, or a similar type of computerized financial program. The Treasurer shall also work closely with the Secretary and Membership Chair to keep the members list up to date and in order.

SECTION 3 – ELECTION OF OFFICERS

Elections shall be held every two years in odd numbered years. The members shall elect five members to serve on a Nominating Committee in October. The Nominating Committee shall nominate at least one candidate for each elective office and report their selections at the general meeting in November. At that meeting the floor will be opened to additional nominations. Vote will be taken by secret ballot. Those nominees who receive a majority vote shall be declared elected. If no person receives a majority of votes cast, a run-off shall be held between those two persons receiving the greatest number of votes. The person receiving the majority of the votes cast shall be declared elected. Those elected shall assume their respective offices on January 1 of the following year, and hold office for two years.

SECTION 4 – VACANCIES AND REMOVAL OF OFFICERS

Should any officer resign or fail to attend three general meetings or Executive Board meetings in a row without cause approved by the Executive Board, the Executive Board shall declare that office vacant and appoint a successor to the office to complete the unexpired term. Any such appointment shall, however, be approved by the membership at the next general meeting. At that meeting, nominations to fill the vacancy shall also be accepted from the floor. Voting shall be by secret ballot following the procedure in Section 3 above.

Removal of an office is an extreme remedy and will be pursued only after all reasonable efforts have been expended to reconcile differences. If differences cannot be reconciled, an officer may be removed by a two-thirds vote of the Executive Board or a two-thirds vote of the present and voting membership at a properly called and noticed meeting where a quorum is present.  Notice that such action is being considered shall be mailed to the officer at least five days before the meeting.

SECTION 5 – APPOINTED OFFICERS

The President shall appoint the Parliamentarian, Sergeant at Arms and any other officers not otherwise specified by these bylaws as required for the general well-being of the Club and approved by the membership.

 

ARTICLE V MEETINGS

SECTION 1 – GENERAL MEETINGS

There shall be a minimum of six general meetings each year, at least one of which shall be in December. A club party is acceptable in lieu of a meeting. Other general meetings shall be held at such times and places as specified by a majority of the Executive Board. Meeting notices must be sent at least two weeks in advance by email or by United States mail upon request.

SECTION 2 – QUORUM

A quorum at any general meeting shall be ten percent of the membership in a good standing.

SECTION 3 – PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY

Robert’s Rules of Order (newly revised) shall be the parliamentary authority for the Club on all questions not covered by these bylaws.

SECTION 4 – NOTICES

At least 14 days prior to a general meeting at which the following items will be discussed and voted upon, the Secretary shall send electronically, or regular United States mail upon request, a notice addressed to each member of the Club in good standing:

Proposed resolutions

Endorsements of candidates or ballot measures

Filling of any vacancies of elected offices

Proposed amendments to these bylaws

Elections of officers

Such notice shall specify the time, place, and date of the general meeting and describe the event.

 

ARTICLE VI EXECUTIVE BOARD

SECTION 1 – FUNCTION

The Executive Board shall approve all expenditures and carry out the Club business between general meetings in a manner consistent with actions taken at the general meetings, and perform any other duties provided for in these bylaws.

SECTION 2 – MEMBERSHIP

Membership of the Executive Board shall include all of the currently elected Club officers.

SECTION 3 – MEETINGS

The president shall call a meeting, with advance notice, of the Executive Board as needed. Special meetings may be called by a majority of the currently elected members of the Executive Board at any time.

The quorum for meetings of the Executive Board shall be one-third of the voting members of the board. Proxies shall not be valid at meetings of the Executive Board.

Meetings of the Executive Board shall be open to the membership unless the board by a two-thirds vote calls for a closed session. Discussion at any Executive Board meeting may be limited by a majority vote of the board to members of the board.

If necessary due to time constraints, the Executive Board may be polled and vote by telephone or by e-mail.

 

ARTICLE VII STANDING COMMITEES

The Standing Committees for the Club are as follows:

Finance

Must develop a yearly budget for the Club, shall work with other Club committees to assist each committee in developing their budgets. The Treasurer shall chair the Finance Committee.

Membership

Maintain all records of members. Develop a plan to increase membership. The Membership Chair must be able to develop and maintain a data base of the membership of the Club. The Membership Chair must also be the membership liaison to the California Democratic Party.

Communications & Newsletter

The Communication and Newsletter Committee shall develop, as noted by the board, news items for print. He or She shall publish the monthly MLKDC newsletter. The monthly newsletter is to be published no later than 10 days prior to the monthly meeting. Vice-President of Communication & Newsletter should possess a working knowledge of Desktop publishing, programs, develop and maintain a website for MLKDC, and act as a liaison with the community, clubs and other news media. The Vice-President should place news items, as appropriate and prescribed by the board with local, state and national news groups. The Vice-President of Communication & Newsletter is accountable to the board and shall be responsible for all other club media not identified herein. Also maintain the Facebook, Twitter and Club websites.

 

Political Relations

The Chair of Political Relations should formulate and direct political forums; contact candidates, establish criteria for selecting candidates who will participate in the forum; and research, and write documents in preparation for elections. The Chair of Political Relations shall provide leadership in endorsement of candidates, initiatives, and proposals. The Chair of Political Relations shall prepare resolutions for input at the local, state, national level as needed. He/She should make recommendations on state platforms and act as a liaison between MLKDC and the state on political issues.

 

Civic Engagement and Community Outreach

The Civic Engagement and Community Outreach Committee shall be responsible for strategic planning and implementation of the MLK Dem Club’s civic engagement and community outreach. This includes: establishing field tracking, data and accountability systems; targeting, electoral, legislative and ballot initiative opportunities. The Committee will identify opportunities for civic engagement activity that supports capacity building among core communities and partners. The Committee will assist members and partners in the development of comprehensive plans that engage community members in the electoral process including voter education, GOTB, and issue campaigns, as well as organizing members and core communities to move a progressive social justice agenda. In addition, the Committee will support the overall growth and success of the MLK Dem Club.

 

Education

The Education Committee shall design and sponsor at least one leadership activity for those who are interested in obtaining information concerning the political process. The chair must keep the Club updated on the status of educational events and programs.

 

Social Action

Shall provide snacks for all Club meetings, welcome visitors at all Club functions and other events deemed necessary by Board. Social Committee shall set up information tables at community events and other sites where noted by the Board, and shall identify humanitarian projects where the Club can provide assistance. The Social Action Committee is responsible for sending cards, flowers, and thank you notes as needed; and for arranging participation in parades.

 

Youth Committee

Shall establish an internship program with elected officials; shall develop an outreach program to interface with youth organizations. The Vice President shall chair the Youth Committee.

 

Historian

Shall be responsible in maintaining all historical data pertaining to the Club, shall attend all events where MLKDC is represented. The historian shall make visual documentation of events where the Club is represented. The historian must have a working knowledge of computerized methods of recording data.

 

ARTICLE VIII CANDIDATE ENDORSEMENTS

 

The Club’s endorsement policies and procedures are stated in the attached Exhibit A and are incorporated herein by reference.

 

ARTICLE IX AFFILIATION AND REPRESENTATION

 

The Club shall maintain a charter with the San Diego County Democratic Party (SDCDP) and adhere to the County Party bylaws and policies governing duly-chartered Democratic clubs, including payment of annual dues.

 

Under the club’s charter with the SDCDP, the President is a representative to the SDCDP Central Committee as an Associate Member. If the President is already a Central Committee member or chooses not to serve, a different representative may be selected to serve his or her term by the President, or in his or her absence, the Executive Board. An Associate Member application, for the President or any other representative, must be submitted to the SDCDP within 30 days of his or her selection by the club.

 

Club representatives to the California Democratic Party’s Pre-Endorsement Conferences, to the Area Caucuses, and any other official representatives, delegates, and alternates from the club to conferences, caucuses, councils, conventions, and other meetings – shall be selected by a vote of members in good standing at a duly noticed club meeting or, if that cannot occur in a timely manner by vote of the Executive Board at a regular or special meeting, or in an emergent situation by designation of the President.

 

ARTICLE X AMENDMENTS

 

These bylaws may be amended by a majority vote at any general meeting after notice has been provided as specified in Article V, Section 4 of these bylaws.

 

ARTICLE XI ADOPTION

 

These bylaws shall become effective immediately upon adoption and shall be the governing rules of the Club.

 

Date:

These Bylaws were adopted June 11, 2005

Amended:

June 10, 2010

August 20, 2011

August 20, 2012

February 13, 2016