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SIDA Constitution

 

 

 

 

Preamble

 

 We believe in the principles of the Democratic Party on the national, state

 and local levels. We believe that the successful furthering of these principles

 demands an active party organization in every community. We believe that

 such an active party organization can exist only if it is representative of all

 the Democratic voters in such communities. In consonance with these beliefs,

 we adopt the following Constitution, to be the guiding instrument of such

 an organization to be formed in Richmond County.

 

 

Article I

 

  The name of the club shall be: The Staten Island Democratic Association.

 

 

Article II

 

  The purpose of the club shall be:

 

To provide an independent, vigorous, liberal

Democratic organization in Richmond County;

 

To promote the basic principles of the Democratic Party

on the national, state and local levels;

 

To encourage the participation of all Democrats in the affairs of their party;

 

To seek and support candidates for public and party

office of ability and integrity who are dedicated to public service;

 

To promote measures designed to serve all the people

and to encourage the appointment of qualified public

  officials and employees without regard to political sponsorship;

 

and

 

To further the interest and participation of all citizens

in the civic affairs of our community.

 

 

Article III Membership

 

  Section 1

 

  Qualifications:  Any person at least 17 years of age who subscribes to and

    desires to further the purposes of the club as set forth in Article II hereof

    shall be eligible for membership, restricted to enrolled Democrats or those

    who state their intent to enroll as soon as eligible.

 

  Section 2:

 

 Classes and Privileges:  There shall be only one class of membership, i.e.,

   regular members who shall enjoy all the rights and privileges of membership.

  Any eligible person may become a regular member (i.e., a member in good

  standing) upon payment of the annual dues prescribed for such members in

  accordance with Section 3 of this Article.

 

  Section 3: 

 

  Dues:  Dues of the members shall be set by a vote the membership. 

     Members in default in payment of dues on after the first day of April of any

     year shall cease to be members in good standing, provided, however, that

     any person first becoming a member after the first day of October of any

     year shall remain a member in good standing for the succeeding calendar year

     without the payment of additional dues.

 

  Section 4:

 

  Expulsion:  The expulsion of any member for conduct inimical to the best

     interests of the club or contrary to the purposes of the club, as set forth in

     Article II hereof may be proposed by a petition enumerating the reasons

     thereof, signed by at least five members of the Executive Committee or 15

     members of the club and submitted to the Corresponding and Recording

     Secretary or the Executive Secretary.

 

    The Secretary shall present the petition at the next meeting of the Executive

    Committee. The Secretary will give the member in question at least ten days

    notice by registered or certified mail of the time and place of such meeting,

    the charges against him or her, and his or her right to make a statement

    in-person and/or in writing to such meeting.

 

   A vote of at least two-thirds of the full membership of the Executive

   Committee shall be required for expulsion. If the Executive Committee

   votes to expel the member, written notice shall be immediately given the

   member, who shall have ten days to appeal such action by written notice to

   the President, or Executive Secretary, or Corresponding and Recording

   Secretary.

 

   If such appeal is taken, the action of the Executive Committee shall be

   inoperative unless and until ratified by a vote of two-thirds of the

   members present and voting at the next meeting of the club.

 

 

Article IV Meetings

 

  Section 1:

 

 Annual Meeting:  The annual meeting of the club shall be held in January, on

   a date to be fixed by the Executive Committee. The purpose of the meeting

   shall be the election of officers and members-at-large for the Executive

   Committee and the transaction of such other business as may properly come

   before it.

 

  Section 2:

 

  Other Meetings:  There shall be monthly meetings.  A special meeting may be

    called at any time by the President or the Executive Committee and shall be

    called within 21 days by the President upon the written request of at least

    fifteen members.  There shall be at least nine such meetings during each

    year.

 

  Section 3:

 

  Notice:  All members shall be given at least seven days written notice of the

    annual meeting and at least five days written notice of other meetings.

 

  Section 4:

 

  Quorum:  Fifteen members or 15% of the membership, whichever is the

    fewer, shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

 

  Section 5:

 

  Voting:  Except as elsewhere provided in this constitution, every member in

               good standing shall be entitled to one vote, provided that:

He or she has been a member for at least 45 days.

He or she is a registered voter and an enrolled Democrat,

or states an intention to enroll as soon as feasible.

 

  Votes must be cast in person and not by proxy, and all questions shall be

 decided by a majority of those voting, except when a 2/3 vote is required

 parliamentary rules or provisions of this constitution.

 

  Section 6:

 

  Agenda:  The President or in the absence of the President, the Vice President,  

    with input of the Executive Committee, shall prepare an agenda for each

    meeting.  Members who wish to have something added to the agenda must

    notify the president before the meeting.

 

 

  Article V:  Officers

 

  Section 1:

 

  Titles:  The officers of the club shall be the President, Vice President,

    Executive Secretary, Corresponding and Recording Secretary,

    Social Secretary, and Treasurer.

 

  Section 2: 

 

  Term of Office:  All officers shall be elected at the annual meeting of the

    club in January of each year and shall serve until the next annual meeting

    and until their successors shall have been elected and shall have qualified.

    No member shall hold the office of President for more than two terms

    unless five years shall have passed after the second term.

 

 

  Section 3: 

 

  Qualifications:  Any member in good standing shall be eligible to hold

    office, provided, however, that no member shall be eligible to hold more

    than one office at the same time.

 

  Section 4:

 

  Membership on the Executive Committee:  All officers shall be members

    ex-officio of the Executive Committee, with full powers.

 

  Section 5:

 

  Duties: 

 

President:  The President shall be the chief administrative officer of

the club, who shall preside at all meetings of the club and of the

Executive Committee, submit a report to the membership at each

meeting of the club on condition and activities of the club, and shall

perform such other duties as the Executive Committee may from time to

time direct.

 

Vice President:  The Vice President shall, at the direction of the

President, perform such duties as the President or the Executive

Committee may from time to time direct. In the event of the

temporary absence of the President, the Vice President shall serve as

Acting President.

 

Executive Secretary: The Executive Secretary shall assist the

President and Executive Committee in the administration of club

activities and duties.

 

Corresponding and Recording Secretary: The Corresponding and

Recording Secretary shall be responsible for the preparation and safe

keeping of minutes of all proceedings of the club. He or she shall

prepare and mail notices of all meetings of the club and such other

notices as shall be required by this constitution.

 

Social Secretary: The Social Secretary shall be responsible for the

development of all social activities involving the club. He or she will

present to the Executive Committee for approval each project with

plans clearly outlined. He or she will work with the chairperson of

any and all committees with related functions, e.g., find raising,

membership and campaign.

 

Treasurer: The Treasurer shall have custody of all funds which shall

be deposited in a bank or banks designated by the Executive

Committee.  No expenditures exceeding $25 shall be committed without

the authorization of the President or Executive Committee.

 

The Treasurer shall be responsible for the maintenance of books of

account showing all receipts and disbursements and such other books

of account as the Executive Committee may direct, which books shall

be open to the inspection of any member of the club upon reasonable

notice.  The Treasurer shall prepare and submit all financial reports

required by law, shall render an account of the financial condition of the

club at each meeting of the Executive Committee, and shall make an

annual report to the members at the annual meeting.

 

  Section 6: 

 

  Vacancies:  If the office of President shall become vacant, the Vice

    President shall be President to serve the remainder of the unexpired term.

    A vacancy in any other office shall be filled for the remainder of the

    unexpired term by the Executive Committee.

 

  Section 7:

 

  Removal:  The removal of any officer for conduct inimical to the best

    interests of the club or contrary to the purposes of the club as set forth in

   Article II hereof, may be proposed by a petition enumerating the reasons

   therefore, signed by at least five members of the Executive Committee

   or 15 members of the club and submitted to either the Executive or

   Corresponding and Recording Secretary, who shall present the petition at

   the next meeting of the Executive Committee.

 

   The Secretary will give the officer in question at least ten days notice

   by certified or registered mail of the time and place of such meeting, and

   the charges against him or her, and his or her right to make a statement

   in-person or in writing to such meeting. A vote of at least two-thirds of

   the full membership of the Executive Committee shall be required for

   removal.

 

   If the Executive Committee votes to remove an officer, written notice

  shall immediately be given the officer, who shall have ten days to appeal

  such action by written notice to the President or either Secretary named

  above. If such appeal is taken, the action of the Executive Committee

  shall be inoperative unless and until ratified by a vote of two-thirds of

  the members present and voting at the next meeting of the club.

 

 

Article VI Party Officers

 

  Section 1:

 

  Membership on the County Executive Committee:   Endorsement

    of candidates for the Executive Committee of the Democratic County

    Committee of Richmond County may be considered at a meeting to be

    held subsequent to election of county committee members and prior to

    the organizing convention of the Democratic County Committee.

 

   At that time candidates for election as officers of the County Committee

   of Richmond County hall be voted upon at such proposed meeting by

   secret ballot by members entitled to vote pursuant to Article IV,

   Section 5, in a manner consistent with the guidelines for elections as set

   forth in Article VIII, below.

 

   Candidates who obtain a majority of votes

   cast shall receive the endorsement of the club. If elected, they shall be

   members ex officio of the Executive Committee of this club with full

   powers to vote, provided that they currently hold membership in the club.

 

  Section 2:

 

  Duties:  Executive members of the Democratic County Committee of

    Richmond County who are elected with the endorsement of the club

    shall consult with the Executive Committee and with the general

    membership from time to time, and shall render reports to the

    general membership from time to time.

 

 

Article VII Executive Committee

 

  Section 1: 

 

  Numbers:  The Executive Committee shall consist of five members

    at-large elected by the membership of the club, all officers of the club,

    former presidents for the three terms following the end of their term of

    office, and all Executive Members of the Democratic County

    Committee of Richmond County endorsed and holding membership

    pursuant to Article VI, Section 1. The number of members of the

    Executive Committee may be increased in accordance with the

    provisions of Article VIII, Section 4B.

 

  Section 2: 

 

  Term of Office:  Members at large shall be elected at the annual

    meeting and shall serve until the next annual meeting and until their

    successors shall have been elected and shall have qualified.

 

  Section 3: 

 

  Qualifications:  Any member in good standing shall be eligible to

    serve as a member-at-large of the Executive Committee.

 

  Section 4:

 

  Functions:  The Executive Committee shall direct and supervise the

    policies, management and procedures of the club, and in pursuance of

    these functions may make such rules and regulations not inconsistent

    with law or this constitution as it shall deem necessary and proper.  The

    Executive Committee may form such sub-committees as it deems

    deems necessary to conduct the administration of the club.

 

  Section 5:

 

  Meetings:  The Executive Committee shall meet on the call of the

    President within 21 days following the annual meeting and thereafter

    shall meet regularly once every month on such dates as it may determine

    Special meetings may be called at any time upon at least 24 hours notice

    by the President, or, in his temporary absence, by the Executive or

    Corresponding and Recording Secretary, and shall be called by the

    President upon the written petition of five or more members of the

    Executive Committee.

 

  Section 6:

 

  Quorum and Voting:  Five members of the Executive Committee shall

    shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. Every

    member of the Executive Committee shall be entitled to one vote on all

    questions, which must be cast in person and not by proxy, and except as

    elsewhere provided in this constitution, all questions shall be decided

    by a majority of those voting.

 

  Section 7: 

 

  Vacancies:  If vacancies occur in the membership-at-large of the Executive

     Committee, the person who received the next highest number of votes for

     member at large in the election shall fill the vacancy.

 

  Section 8: 

 

  Removal:  Procedures for removal of an Executive Committee member

    shall be the same as those provided for the removal of officers in

   Article V, Section 7, above, except that removal shall be automatic if any

    elected member of the Executive Committee fails to attend three

    consecutive meeting of the Executive Committee, unless a requested

    leave of absence is granted by the Executive Committee. Notification of

    this action will be sent in writing after the second meeting missed.

 

 

Article VIII Elections

 

  Section 1: 

 

  Time:  Officers and members-at-large of the Executive Committee shall

     be elected at the annual meeting.

 

  Section 2: 

 

  Nominations: 

 

Nominating Committee:  At the October meeting there shall be

elected by ballot a Nominating Committee of nine members of the

club.  Balloting for members of the Nominating Committee shall

conform, as nearly as may be, to the procedure for election of

members-at-large of the Executive Committee as set forth in

Section 4B of this Article.

 

The Nominating Committee shall select nominees for each of the

offices and for members-at-large of the Executive Committee,

which election shall be made by majority vote of the

Nominating Committee.

 

At the November meeting, the Nominating Committee shall submit

to the members of the club a written report setting forth the nominees

for the various positions. If requested by two members of the

Nominating Committee, the report shall include a minority report in

which additional nominations may be made for any position or

positions and such nominees shall be deemed to have been nominated

in addition to the nominees of the majority. The report shall also set forth

the procedure for nomination by petition.

 

Nominations by Petition:  Additional nomination may be made by

petition signed by 15% of those members in good standing or 15 members,

whichever is the fewer, as of the final date for the submission of such

petitions namely, the December meeting at which all candidates shall be

presented to the membership as an order of business. Nominating petitions

shall be submitted to the Corresponding and Recording Secretary, or, in his

or her absence to an officer designated by the President or the Acting

President. Nomination from the floor. Nominations from the floor may be

made only in the event that no eligible candidate has been otherwise

nominated for an office.

 

Notice:  All names of persons nominated will be included in the mailed

notice of the annual meeting.   

 

  Section 3:

 

  Members Entitled to Vote:  All members eligible under the provisions of

    Article IV, Section 5, shall be entitled to vote in club elections.

 

  Section 4:

 

  Voting Procedure:  Voting shall be by secret written ballot, except when

    there is no contest for an office.

 

  Officers:  There shall be a separate vote for each office in the order

listed in the constitution. Each member entitled to vote shall have one

vote for each position to be filled, and a majority of votes cast shall be

necessary for election. If no nominee receives a majority on the first ballot, additional ballots shall be had between the nominees having the two

highest numbers of votes until one such nominee obtains a majority. 

 

Executive Committee:  After the officers have been elected, there shall be

a single ballot for members-at-large of the Executive Committee. Added to

this ballot shall be the name of any person nominated for an office who

shall have failed of election.

 

Each member entitled to vote shall have one vote for each position of

member-at-large of the Executive Committee, and the five nominees who

receive the highest number of votes shall be declared elected. In the event

of any tie which makes it impossible to determine which five nominees are elected, all those nominees tied for 5th place shall be deemed elected.

 

 

Article IX Candidates for Public and Party Office

 

  Section 1:

 

  Endorsement of Candidates in Primary Elections:  Endorsement of

    candidates for election to party office or for nomination as the Democratic

    candidate for public office where such office is to be voted upon in a

    forthcoming primary election in Richmond County, or in a political

    subdivision which includes all or part of Richmond County, may be

    proposed by the Executive Committee or by a written petition signed by

    15% of the membership entitled to vote pursuant to Article IV, Section 5,

    above, or 20 such members and submitted to the Executive or

    Corresponding and Recording Secretary.

 

    Such proposal shall be included in the notice of meeting next sent out

    and shall be placed upon the agenda of that meeting. Names of additional

    candidates for such office may be proposed from the floor of that meeting

    by any member of the club. All candidates proposed for such office then

    shall be voted upon by secret ballot by members entitled to vote pursuant

    to Article IV, Section 5.

 

   The candidate who obtains a majority of the votes cast shall receive the

   endorsement of the club. The provisions of this section shall not apply to

   candidates for election as members of the Democratic County Committee.

 

  Section 2:

 

  Endorsement of Candidates in General and Special Elections:  The 

    procedures set forth in Section 1, above, shall be used for the

    endorsement of candidates in general or special elections.

 

 

  Article X Committees

 

  Section 1: 

 

  Audit Committee:  There shall be an Audit Committee which shall examine

    and audit the books of account of the club every year, within 30 days of the

    Annual Meeting and election of club officers, and at such other times as the

    President or the Executive Committee shall direct. A report of the audit shall

    be submitted to the Executive Committee and to the members at the next 

    general meeting following such audit.

 

  Section 2:

 

  Campaign Committee:  There shall be a Campaign Committee which

    shall direct and supervise the activities of club in all primary and general

    elections in which the club participates. In addition, the Campaign

    Committee shall select and designate Area Captains and candidates for

    membership on the Democratic County Committee of Richmond County,

    provided, however, that such selections and designations shall be subject

    to approval by the President or the Executive Committee.

 

  Section 3: 

 

  Other Committees:  The President or the Executive Committee may,

    from time to time, create such other committees as may be deemed

    necessary.

 

  Section 4: 

 

  Committee Chairs and Members:  Committee chairs and members

    Chairpersons of all committees shall be appointed by the president by

    and with the consent of the Executive Committee and may be removed

    at any time by the President. Members of all committees shall be

    appointed by the President in consultation with the respective chairs.

 

 

Article XI Use of the Club Name

 

  No person, whether a member of the club or otherwise, shall use the

  name of the club in any way which may indicate official sanction by the

  club of any statement or action or in any way which may indicate support

  of the club of any candidate without prior authorization by the Executive

  Committee, or by the membership of the club.

 

 

Article XII Notices

 

  All notices required by this constitution shall be deemed given when

  mailed. This provision shall not apply to special meetings of the Executive

  Committee called upon 24 hours notice, as prescribed by Section 5 of

  Article VII.

 

 

Article XIII Order

 

  Parliamentary Procedure shall be governed by Robertís Rules of Order

  (revised) in the absence of any contrary provisions in this constitution.

 

 

Article XIV Amendments

 

  Amendments to this constitution may be proposed by the Executive

  Committee or by written petition signed by 15 members or 15% of

  the membership, whichever is the greater, and submitted to the Executive

  or Corresponding and Recording Secretary. To become effective, any

  amendment so proposed must be approved and adopted thereafter by

  two-thirds of the members present and voting at a single meeting of the

  club. The substance of the change(s) to be effected by such proposed

  amendment(s) must be included in the notice of the meeting.