ARTICLE I –Name
The name of this organization shall be the Baltimore County West Democratic Club.
ARTICLE II- Purpose and Objectives
It is the purpose of the Club to enhance the civic and political participation of registered Democrats in Baltimore County who reside in Legislative Districts 10, 11, 12, 42 or 44, and who pay the annual dues. The Club’s specific objectives are:
Section 1: to motivate and to assist registered Democrats to vote in every primary and general election;
Section 2: to enhance the political literacy of Baltimore County residents within the Club’s boundaries through sponsorship of public events and through the dissemination of print materials;
Section 3: to analyze and to take positions on selected issues of critical importance to residents within the Club’s boundaries;
Section 4: to develop criteria for the possible endorsement of a limited number of highly qualified candidates running for offices, which have a significant impact upon the residents within the Club’s boundaries;;
Section 5: to sponsor candidate forums or interviews as part of the Club’s endorsement process;
Section 6: to provide tangible support (to be defined during each election cycle) for the Club’s endorsed candidates; and
Section 7: to sponsor periodic voter registration drives.
Section 1: Full membership in the Club is open to any registered Baltimore County Democrat who pays the annual dues, and whose voter’s card on or after September 2016 shows their residence as one of the following legislative districts: 10, 11, 12, 42, or 44.
Section 2: Each financial member shall have a single vote, which may be exercised at the second, and all subsequent meetings which they attend as a member of the Club.
Section 1: The annual meeting shall be held in September, and in even years shall include the election of officers and of those Directors of the Board who serve as At-Large Members.
Section 2: At a minimum, there shall be at least one other membership meeting in the interim between annual meetings, as determined by the President or the Board of Directors.
Section 3: Notification of membership meetings must be sent by U.S. mail or by email to all financial members at least ten days prior to the date of the particular meeting.
Section 4: A quorum shall consist of ten percent (10%) of the members for all business except for the endorsement of candidates for public office and for votes for or against ballot issues for a primary or general election.
Section 5: A quorum shall consist of twenty percent (20%) of the members for the purpose of endorsing candidates for public office, and/or for supporting or opposing issues to be voted on in a primary or general election.
Section 6: An abstention is omitted from counts of both the yeas and the nays. If the majority of members present cast a vote to “abstain”, then the Club will take a no position on that item of business.
Section 7: Motions to endorse candidates for public office, and motions for or against ballot issues for a primary or general election must receive a vote of sixty percent (60%) of those members present and voting. If a first ballot produces a majority vote, but not the required sixty percent (60%), a second ballot shall be distributed. If the required vote is not reached as a result of the second ballot, an impasse shall be declared, and the result is final unless twenty percent (20%) of the membership in good financial standing petitions the President in writing for reconsideration at the next meeting of the Club.
ARTICLE V-Officers and Board Members
Section 1: The officers shall be a president, a vice president, a secretary, and a treasurer, who shall be elected in even years at the annual meeting, and who shall hold office until the election of their successors.
Section 2: The Board of Directors shall consist of the officers, the immediate past president, four elected members-at-large, and chairs of all standing committees appointed by the President, as well as those Club Members serving in the Maryland General Assembly.
Section 2a. A member elected to fill a vacant office or at-large Board position shall serve for the remainder of the term of his or her predecessor.
Section 2b. Any Board member may be removed from office, with cause and another may be elected to serve the remainder of the term, by a vote of the majority of Board members.
Section 2c. Board members shall receive no compensation for their services as such, but may, by resolution of the Board, be allowed reimbursement for their expenses actually and reasonably incurred on behalf of the Club.
Section 3: The term of office for officers and Board members shall be two years. Officers and Board members shall serve until election of their successors; in a non-election year an officer or Board member whose dues have not been received at least 30 days following the annual meeting shall be declared non-financial and their position vacated.
Section 4: The President shall appoint a nominating committee of at least five members.
Section 5: Additional nominations for officers or Board members may be made from the floor at the annual meeting in September, but must be seconded by three additional financial members.
Section 6: Any officer or Board member who attends fewer than forty percent (40%) of the meetings within a given term shall be ineligible for a nomination for a consecutive term.
Section 7: The duties of the officers and Board members shall be to carry out decisions made by the members, to plan agendas of membership meetings, and to recommend procedures for endorsements.
Section 8: The Board shall be empowered to support or to oppose pending public issues when there is insufficient time to first schedule a call meeting of the membership. If the Board acts for the membership in such instances, the Board’s action shall be reported at the next membership meeting and on the Club website.
Section 9: The Board shall meet at the call of the President; with all Board meetings open to any financial member.
Section 10: Only financial members are eligible for election to the Board, as certified by the Treasurer at the annual meeting.
Section 11: The President shall preside at meetings and shall perform the usual functions of the presiding officer, including authority to co-sign checks.
Section 12: The Vice President shall perform the duties of the President in her/his absence.
Section 13: The Secretary shall keep a record of all meetings and shall report such proceedings as may be requested by the presiding officer. The Secretary shall assist the President in the issuance of notices of all meetings.
Section 14: The Treasurer shall collect and be the custodian of all funds and securities belonging to the Club. The Treasurer and the Secretary shall keep a roll of the members in good standing. The Treasurer shall report in writing at membership meetings. The Treasurer’s books and records shall be made available to the Budget and Audit Committee at the end of each membership year.
Section 1: The President shall be an ex-officio member of all committees.
Section 2: There shall be seven (7) standing committees, which shall be Bylaws, Budget and Audit, Community Service, Endorsement, Fundraising, Membership, Legislation and Issues, and Voter Registration. Other committees may be created on an ad hoc or as needed basis.
Section 1: These By-Laws may be amended by an affirmative vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the members present at any meeting at which a quorum is present, provided that written notice of such proposed amendments shall have been sent to all members at least ten days in advance of the meeting.
AS REVISED ON SEPTEMBER 8, 2016