(revised August 7, 2013, effective August 7, 2013)
ARTICLE I FUNCTION AND DUTIES OF THE COMMITTEE
Section 1. The county central committee shall have charge of the party campaign under the general direction of the State central committee or of the executive committee selected by the State central committee.
Section 2. Pursuant to this duty, the organization and activities of the Alameda County Democratic Central Committee (hereafter referred to as the Committee) shall be directed primarily toward securing the election to office of the official nominees of the Democratic Party.
Section 3. The Committee shall perform such other duties and services for the Democratic Party as seem to be for the benefit of the Party.
ARTICLE II MEMBERS OF THE COMMITTEE
Section 1. The Committee shall be composed of regular members, alternate members, and associate members.
Section 2. The regular members of the Committee shall consist of: (1) elected members, including members appointed to fill vacancies in the elected membership pursuant to Article II, Section 12(a); and (2) ex-officio members, including Democratic nominees for each Assembly, State Senatorial and Congressional district representing any part of Alameda County, Democratic nominees for State Constitutional offices resident in Alameda County, and California Democratic Party Regional Directors representing any part of Alameda County. For the purposes of this Article, “nominee” shall refer to that registered Democrat in a voter nominated election who received the highest number of votes in the general election or in a special election to fill a vacancy for the offices indicated; should there be no registered Democrat among the “top-two” in the general election, “nominee” shall refer to that registered Democrat who receive the highest number of votes in the top-two open primary.
Section 3. All regular members of the Committee are eligible to vote for and be elected to any office of the Committee, to speak and vote at all Committee meetings, to be appointed to any commission of the Committee, and otherwise to participate fully in the activities of the Committee.
Section 4. Each regular member of the Committee may appoint an alternate member for a term ending with his or her own term, subject to confirmation by a majority of the members of this Committee present and voting. Such alternate member must meet the same qualifications as the appointing member and shall be a resident of Alameda County. Notification of such appointment shall be in writing and shall be directed to the Chair of the Committee, who shall announce the appointment at the next regular meeting of the Committee.
Section 5. An alternate member of the Committee may vote at any meeting of the Committee from which the appointing member is absent. An alternate member may attend any meeting of the Committee and shall be given the privilege of the floor, to speak and to make and second motions. An alternate member may be elected to any office of the Committee, except Chair and Vice Chair, and may be appointed to any standing or special commission of the Committee, even to its chairmanship, with right of full participation in all activities of the commission.
Section 6. Associate members may be appointed by the following procedures:
(a) one (1) member by each chartered organization, in writing, upon granting of the charter and for the term of the charter;
(b) upon nomination by any two (2) regular members, by vote of those members present and voting at any meeting of the Committee, provided that the number of such associate members in any Assembly District shall not exceed the number of elected members in that District.
Section 7. An associate member may attend any meeting of the Committee and shall be given the privilege of the floor, to speak and to make and second motions. An associate member may be elected to any office of the Committee, except Chair and Vice Chair, and may be appointed to any standing or special commission of the Committee, even to its chairmanship, with right of full participation in all activities of the commission.
Section 8. Each regular, alternate, and associate member of the Committee shall pay annual dues of not less than $24.00 a year to be set biennially by the Committee on the recommendation of the Commission on Finance and Budget. Associate members under the age of 26 who have been full-time students with the previous year shall pay annual dues of $12.00 a year. Dues of associate members appointed pursuant to Article II, Section 6 (a) may be included in the chartering fee of the appointing organization. Notice of dues shall be mailed to each member and alternate by the Treasurer, who shall report at three consecutive meetings, thereafter, the names of all delinquent.
Section 9. The removal of residence by an elected or appointed member of the Committee from the Assembly District from which that member has been elected or appointed shall constitute the automatic resignation of the member from the Committee.
Section 10. Members, regular, alternate, or associate (excluding ex-officio) may be removed from the Committee if any of the following apply:
(a) Any Committee member, alternate, or associate member other than ex-officio, who, after his/her election to this Committee, during the General Election immediately after said member was elected to this Committee, or during his/her term of membership, such member affiliates with or registers as a member of another political Party, publicly avows preference for another political Party, publicly advocates that the voters should not vote for the Party’s nominees, or who publicly gives support to or avows a preference for a candidate who is opposed to our Party’s nominees may be removed from office of this Committee. Action toward removal shall be initiated by the filing of a written charge by any two regular members, submitted to the Recording Secretary of this Committee.
(b) Any committee member, regular, alternate, or associate other than ex-officio, who fails to pay his annual dues to the Committee, may be, following the third notice from the Treasurer of such failure, removed from membership on the Committee. Action toward removal for failure to pay dues is initiated automatically by the report of the Treasurer to the Committee.
(c) Any regular, alternate, or associate member of the Committee, other than ex-officio, who is absent for three regular meetings in a year may be removed from membership on the Committee unless the absence has been caused by illness, military duty or excused by the Chair, Vice Chair or their designee on the date of the meeting. The Chair or Vice Chair must be notified of such absence in advance of the meeting. Action toward removal for failure to attend meetings is initiated automatically by the report of the Recording Secretary to the Committee.
(d) An alternate member or associate member appointed pursuant to Article II, Section 6 (a), may be removed from the Committee at the written request of his appointor.
Section 11. Removal of a Committee member, alternate, or associate in the case of dues or absences, may follow only after at least five (5) days written notice has been given to the member and to the other members of the Committee by the Corresponding Secretary, prior to the regular meeting at which the hearing or action is to take place.
Consideration of the charge or cause for removal shall be limited strictly to the charge or cause and to the evidence in direct support. The member in question shall be given full opportunity for personal defense or explanation, with an allowance of at least twenty (20) minutes of the time of the meeting.
An elected or appointed member may only be removed by two-thirds vote of those members present and voting. In the case of removal consideration for alternate members or associate members appointed pursuant to Article II, Section 6 (a), due to the non-payment of dues or attendance, a written notification to the alternate’s appointor is written is the only requirement.
An alternate or associate member removed may not be reappointed during the same term of the Committee.
Section 12. (a) A vacancy in the regular membership of the Committee shall be filled by election of another qualified resident of the same Assembly District. Nomination shall be of a caucus of the regular members resident in the district at the Organizational Meeting of the Committee or at a meeting called by the District Vice Chair with at least five (5) days notice in writing. A quorum of a District caucus shall be a majority of its members, and the nomination shall be by a majority of those present and voting. If a nomination does not result, the District Vice Chair shall call a second meeting of the caucus with at least five (5) days notice in writing. If a nomination does not result from the second caucus meeting, the Committee shall proceed to vote, without the nomination of the caucus, at its next regular meeting. Election to fill a vacancy on the Committee shall be by majority of Committee members present and voting.
(b) If a vacancy for the alternate of a regular member exists for a period of six months, the members of the Assembly District in which said vacancy exists may nominate an alternate for appointment, subject to confirmation by a majority of the members of this Committee present and voting. Such nomination shall be made in the same manner as for filling a vacancy in the regular membership.
Section 13. For the purpose of election of representatives to the Democratic State Central Committee only, the eligible membership of the County Central Committee shall consist of the elected members and their alternates, and associate members.
ARTICLE III OFFICERS OF THE COMMITTEE
Section 1. The officers of the Committee shall be a Chair, Vice Chair, Corresponding Secretary, Recording Secretary, Treasurer and five (5) District Vice Chairs. The officers of this Committee and, if a member of this Committee, its immediate past Chair shall constitute its Executive Committee.
Section 2. The Chair, Vice Chair, Corresponding Secretary, Recording Secretary and five (5) District Vice Chairs shall be elected by majority vote of those Committee members present and voting and shall serve to the end of the term of the Committee members.
Section 3. The election of officers shall proceed in the order set forth in Section 1 above, and the election of one shall be completed before the election of the next in order is initiated. These elections shall be held at the first regular meeting of the newly sworn members in January of each year following the General November elections.
Section 4. Following the election of the first five (5) officers described in Section 1 above, the Committee members representing each Assembly District shall meet separately and shall proceed to elect a District Vice Chair in accordance with Article II, Section 12.
Section 5. The Chair of the Committee shall be its Chief Executive, with responsibility for execution of its policies and programs and for other overall direction and supervision of its activities. Subject to approval by majority vote of Committee members present and voting at the first meeting of the newly sworn in members in January of each year following the General November elections and following the election of officers as set forth in Section 3 above, shall appoint the Treasurer abiding by guidelines set forth in Section 9 of this Article. Subject to approval by majority vote of Committee members present and voting at a regular meeting, shall appoint the Chair and members of all standing and special commissions of the Committee, and shall be an ex-officio member of each commission. At least five (5) days prior to each regular meeting, the Chair shall transmit to the Corresponding Secretary the agenda of that meeting, including any proposed election or removal of members or officers, any proposed commission appointments, and other matters of major importance.
Section 6. The Vice Chair shall assist the Chair in the fulfillment of the duties in such a manner as the Chair prescribes, and shall preside at any meeting of the Committee from which the Chair is absent.
Section 7. The Corresponding Secretary, on behalf of the Committee shall reply, as directed by the Committee or Chair, to letters that have been addressed to the Committee. Shall transmit the memorials, resolutions, news releases as directed by the Committee or Chair. Shall send out all notices of meetings, minutes of meetings, agenda, etc., as directed.
Section 8. The Recording Secretary shall be responsible for taking roll at each meeting and of recording the minutes of each meeting. Shall transmit to the Corresponding Secretary a copy of the minutes of each meeting, including the record of attendance and absences.
Section 9. The Treasurer shall be responsible for all funds of the Committee and shall disburse them to pay the bills of the Committee. Shall maintain complete record of receipts and disbursements of accounts receivable and payable, and of cash on hand. Shall make monthly financial reports to the committee. Shall be responsible for preparing and filing all financial reports, documents and records required by law.
In appointing the Treasurer the following criteria must be considered: 1.) Proven organizational ability; 2.) Knowledge of Fair Political Practices Commission rules and regulations; 3.) Experience in filing financial statements, reports, documents and records required by law; 4.) Eligibility for bonding.
Section 10. The District Vice Chair, under the direction of the Chair, shall be responsible for overseeing the Party election campaign and other activities in the respective Assembly Districts. At least once during the term of office, shall visit a meeting of each club in the district, as the official representative of the Committee. Shall make a verbal report at the next regular meeting of the committee after the club visit takes place.
Section 11. Other duties and responsibilities of each of the above officers shall be those prescribed by action of the Committee or by the latest edition of Roberts Rules of Order.
Section 12. An officer of this committee may be removed from office for cause, that is: misconduct in the exercise of his or her duties as an officer, or neglect of duty in office, by the following procedures:
(a) At least five regular members of the Committee must sign and submit to the Recording Secretary a written Statement of Charges containing the grounds for removal;
(b) The Secretary, upon receipt of the Statement of Charges, must send to the accused officer by registered mail a copy of the Statement of Charges and a letter stating that the accused officer may either resign or have a hearing by way of motion of removal at the next regular meeting of the Committee;
(c) If the accused officer does not resign, the Secretary shall send a copy of the Statement of Charges to all members of the Committee along with the notice for the next regular meeting of the Committee;
(d) At said next regular meeting of the Committee, the accused officer shall be afforded an opportunity to respond to the Charges. After such hearing, upon motion for removal made by one of the signatories to the Statement of Charges, the accused officer may be removed by two-thirds vote of all members present and voting, provided there is a quorum present.
ARTICLE IV COMMISSIONS OF THE COMMITTEE
Section 1. The standing commissions of the Committee shall be Political Action, Finance and Budget, By-Laws, and Resolutions.
(a) The Chairman and members of all standing commissions shall be appointed by the Chairman of the Committee. All appointments to standing commissions shall be for the term ending with that of Committee members.
(b) All committee members and alternates shall be assigned by the Chairman to one standing Commission to which the member or alternate owes prime responsibility. A member or alternate may also be appointed to another commission but owes prime responsibility to the initial appointment.
Standing commission meetings shall be considered a regular meeting for purposes of attendance for those members who have been assigned prime responsibility to that commission.
Section 2. All Committee members and alternates are eligible for appointment as Chair of a commission. Non-members of the Committee may also be appointed as members to commissions but cannot be appointed as Chair. Non-members of a commission cannot make up more than one-third of the membership.
Section 3. The commission on Political Action shall be responsible for the encouragement and coordination of a voter registration and get-out-the-vote program, and it shall maintain liaison with other organizations and individuals similarly engaged. Shall be responsible for all polls and surveys requested by the Committee. Shall review all requests from clubs and other organizations seeking official party recognition and shall make the necessary recommendations to the Committee for the official chartering or recognition. Shall be responsible for implementing procedures for endorsements adopted in accordance with Article VI.
Section 4. The Commission of Finance and Budget shall be responsible for all fund-raising activities under Committee auspices. It shall maintain lists of contributors to the Committee.
Section 5. The Commission on By-Laws shall be responsible for drafting and proposing amendments to these by-laws as deemed advisable by the Commission or upon direction of the Committee.
Section 6. The Commission on Resolutions shall be responsible for drafting and proposing resolutions the Commission deems advisable or as the Committee directs.
If a resolution is referred to the Resolutions Commission by the Committee, and that Commission fails to meet prior to the next regular meeting of the Committee, said resolution may be considered by the Committee at that next regular meeting under old business.
Section 7. The Chair of this Committee may create such special committees as deemed advisable and may appoint the Chair of such Committees.
Section 8. All Commission Chairs shall notify the Corresponding Secretary of all meetings and advise the Recording Secretary of the attendance at such meetings.
ARTICLE V MEETINGS OF THE COMMITTEE
Section 1. The Committee shall meet to seat newly elected members and to elect officers in January of each odd-numbered year. This meeting shall be designated as the Organizational Meeting of the Committee.
Section 2. Regular meetings of the Committee shall be held on the first Wednesday of each month or at such other time as determined by the Committee.
Section 3. Special meetings of the Committee may be held upon call of the Chair or within ten (10) days upon petition of any eleven (11) members.
Section 4. A quorum of the Committee shall consist of sixteen (16) members. There shall be no proxy voting; only votes of members in attendance at a meeting shall be counted.
Section 5. Except as provided herein, the rules contained in Roberts Rules of Order, latest edition, shall govern the meetings of the Committee.
ARTICLE VI ENDORSEMENTS
Section 1. The Committee may make endorsements of candidates for any non-partisan office lying in whole or in part within Alameda County.
Section 2. The Committee shall make no endorsement for any partisan office; nor shall it endorse more candidates for any office than there are seats to be filled; nor shall it endorse any candidate who is not a registered Democrat.
Section 3. To be eligible for endorsement a candidate must have been nominated for endorsement by two regular members of this Committee not less than seven (7) days prior to the meeting at which the endorsements are to be considered.
Section 4. Endorsements shall be made only after the close of filing for the offices described in Section 1 of this Article, at a meeting of this Committee no later than forty-five (45) days prior to the election, or, in the case of a run-off election called less than sixty (60) days prior to the date of the election, no later than fourteen (14) days before the election.
Section 5. All Democratic candidates for the offices listed in Section 1 shall be notified by mail, with certificate of mailing or delivery confirmation, postmarked within seven (7) days of the close of filing, or, in the case of a run-off election called less than sixty (60) days prior to the date of the election, no later than seven (7) after the call of the election, of the date, time and location of the endorsement meeting, and of the requirements for endorsement.
Section 6. In the case of a run-off election, no new endorsement shall be made for any office for which a candidate in the run-off has already received the endorsement of this Committee.
Section 7. Endorsement shall be by sixty per cent (60%) vote of those members present and voting, or by adoption of a consent calendar of candidates pursuant to Section 8 of this Article. For endorsements not adopted by consent, voting shall take place for each office in ballot order. No vote on endorsement shall be taken by secret ballot. In the absence of a sixty per cent (60%) vote for any candidate for an office, the position of the Committee shall be one of no endorsement.
Section 8. The Chair of this Committee may convene a Screening Committee, consisting of the members of the Executive Committee, for the purpose of preparing a consent calendar of candidates for endorsement.
(a) The Screening Committee shall meet to interview candidates, and shall use its best efforts to accommodate those Democratic candidates for the offices described in Section 1 of this Article who request interviews.
(b) Any member of the Screening Committee may be represented by proxy at meetings of the Committee, provided that the proxy is member of this Committee from the same Assembly District.
(c) Candidates may be placed on the consent calendar only by two-thirds (2/3) vote of the full membership of the Screening Committee. Such vote shall constitute nomination as described in Section 3 of this Article.
(d) The Screening Committee shall report its consent calendar at a meeting of this Committee not less than ten (10) days prior to the meeting at which the endorsements are to be considered. The consent calendar shall be amended to remove a candidate on the request of two regular members of this Committee made not less than seven (7) days prior to the meeting at which the endorsements are to be considered.
ARTICLE VII REPEAL OR AMENDMENTS OF THE BY-LAWS
Section 1. These by-laws may be repealed or amended at any regular meeting. Such action may be taken provided that notice of intention to propose this has been given by the By-Laws Commission at the preceding regular meeting and that a full copy of the proposed change has been transmitted to the Corresponding Secretary at least seven (7) days in advance of a regular meeting in order that it will be incorporated in with the notice of the meeting when the proposed action is to be taken.