Adopted April 2006; Amended February 2009
Article I – Name
The name of this organization shall be the Ann Arbor City Democratic Party, hereinafter called the Party.
Article II – Purpose
It shall be the purpose of the Party to develop issues and programs related to city government, to supply financial support for the Party and its candidates, to recruit and promote candidates and campaign for their election, and to promote the widest possible participation in all activities of the Party. It shall further be the purpose of the Party to promote the growth, welfare and success of the Democratic Party, and to assist in the development of the party platforms of Washtenaw County, the state of Michigan, and the United States.
Article III – Membership
1. Residents of the Ann Arbor area who are in sympathy with the general aims and policies of the Party are considered members of the Party and are eligible to participate in Party activities and to vote at Party meetings. A person becomes a member of the Party for purposes of notification by indicating his or her wish to become a member by being placed on the membership list.
2. The Secretary shall have responsibility for maintaining the list of Party members to be notified of Party meetings.
3. There shall be no dues for Ann Arbor City Democratic Party membership.
Article IV Officers
1. The officers of the Party are elected at the annual meeting of the membership and shall consist of a Chair, a Secretary, a Treasurer, two or more Vice-Chairs (one of whom shall serve as Vice-Chair for Organization) and the Immediate Past Chair of the Party.
2. Vacancies in these offices shall be filled by action of the Executive Board. At the next general meeting of the Party, a new officer to fill the unexpired term shall be elected by a majority vote of the voting members present.
3. Duties of officers:
A. The Chair is the chief executive officer of the Party and shall appoint chairs of all committees except the Nominating Committee.
B. The Chair shall designate a Vice-Chair who shall act as Chair in the absence of the Chair.
C. The Executive Board may from time to time define specific duties for the Vice-Chairs.
D. The Secretary shall keep minutes of all business meetings of the Executive Board and meetings of the Party, and shall arrange for correspondence as requested by the Chair.
E. The Treasurer shall receive and disburse funds of the Party and shall keep records of the same.
F. The above officers shall also have the duties defined by these bylaws, the Executive Board, and general party meetings.
Article V – Executive Board
1. The officers set forth in Article IV, the Ward Chairs or their designated alternates, and all members holding an elective city office shall constitute the Executive Board.
2. The Executive Board shall carry on the business of the Party between general meetings.
A. All meetings of the Executive Board shall be open, with the privilege of debate but not vote, to any Party member. There shall be a good faith effort to notify members of the Executive Board of meetings of the Board.
B. A quorum of the Executive Board shall consist of 5 members of the Board.
Article VI – Ward and Precinct Organization
1. Each of the wards of Ann Arbor shall have a Ward Chair. The ward organization may, at its discretion, decide to have two or more Ward Co-Chairs or a Ward Committee instead of a Ward Chair. In such case, one Ward Co-Chair or one member of the Ward Committee shall be designated to serve on the Executive Board and Nominating Committee. In these bylaws the term “Ward Chair” shall include “Ward Co-Chairs” and “Ward Committee.”
2. Democrats in each ward shall determine the method of selection of their Ward Chair. If Democrats in the ward fail to select a Ward Chair, the Ward Chair vacancy shall be filled by recommendation of the Vice-Chair for Organization to the Executive Board for approval.
3. One or more Precinct Chairs shall be appointed for each precinct by the Ward Chair, unless he or she receives a written request of five members of the Party resident in the precinct for a meeting, in which case a general precinct meeting shall be held for discussion of potential Precinct Chairs and election of same. Precinct Chairs shall serve at the pleasure of the Ward Chair. The Ward Chair shall see that all Precinct Chair vacancies are filled as soon as is practicable.
4. Each Ward Chair shall hold at least one ward meeting annually for discussion of potential Council candidates. In addition, a Ward Chair shall hold a ward meeting within three weeks after receipt of a written request by ten members of the Party resident in the ward.
Article VII – General Party Meetings
1. The annual meeting will be held in late November or December.
2. The Party will meet at least once each quarter, the time and place of these meetings to be determined by the Party Chair.
3. A general Party meeting shall be held on written request of ten members of the Party. Cost of notice shall be borne by the ten members.
4. The annual meeting and all general Party meetings shall be preceded by at least one week’s notice to all Party members. Notification may be by mail, e-mail, telephone, direct contact, or through local news media. Notice of the annual meeting must include a list of all nominees submitted by the Nominating Committee.
5. For all ward meetings, a good faith effort shall be made to notify all Party members in the ward by mail, e-mail, telephone, or direct contact.
6. A quorum at the annual meeting and all general Party meetings is fifteen members.
Article VIII – Notice of Resolutions
1. Notice of resolutions stating a Party position or changing the structure of the Party organization which will be presented at a general Party meeting must be given to members at least one week prior to the date of the meeting by mail, e-mail, telephone, or direct contact; or it must be given at the immediately preceding general Party meeting. Resolutions will not be voted on at meetings held in June, July, or August.
2. If the notice required by Article VIII, Section 1, has not been given to the membership, the resolution may be introduced, but requires a 4/5 majority of those present and voting to pass.
Article IX – Nomination and Election of City Officers
1. The Nominating Committee shall consist of all Ward Chairs or whomever they may designate as their alternates, one person from each ward elected by the Party membership at a general Party meeting, and the Vice-Chair for Organization, who shall serve as Chair of the Committee.
2. The Nominating Committee shall report at the annual meeting to be held in late November or December at least one nominee for each of the elective offices listed in Article IV, Section 1. These officers shall be elected for a one-year term, or until their successors have been elected.
3. In addition to the responsibility of providing at least one nominee for each office, the Nominating Committee shall include as a nominee any candidate receiving support of at least two members of the Nominating Committee. Any candidate receiving the support of at least ten party members may by petition, directed to and received by the Secretary at least two weeks before the annual meeting, asserting that the consent of the nominee has been obtained.
4. Nominations may also be made from the floor, provided prior consent of the nominee has been obtained.
5. When there is more than one candidate for an office, voting for that office shall be by secret ballot on demand of one member.
ARTICLE X – Primary Elections
1. The Party will endorse no candidates in any primary elections. Individual Party members, officers, Ward Chairs, Precinct Chairs, and other officials are free to support any candidate of their choice, but must not so act in the name of the Party, or in their official capacities.
2. Upon request to the Chair, every candidate in a Democratic Party primary will be given a complete list of registered voters in the precinct by full name and address, with party or independent affiliations supplied by the Precinct Chair, if such affiliations are known. Precinct Chairs shall not make such lists available to any candidate without prior consultation with the Ward Chair and Party Chair. If there is a cost for supplying such materials, the candidate will bear the cost.
ARTICLE XI – Parliamentary Authority
Party meetings shall be conducted according to the latest edition of Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised, unless these bylaws provide to the contrary.
ARTICLE XII – Amendments
Amendment may be made to these bylaws at any regular general or annual meeting, providing the amendment has been previously submitted in writing at a general meeting, and there is a favorable vote of 2/3 of those members present and voting at the second meeting. The text of the proposed amendment shall be included in the notice of the second meeting.