PAULDING COUNTY DEMOCRATIC COMMITTEE
- 1.1 . The name of this organization shall be the Paulding County Democratic Committee, herein after to be referred to as the “Committee.” All members, officers and subdivisions of the Committee are subject to these Bylaws and to the Charter and Bylaws of the State Committee of the Democratic Party of Georgia, hereinafter referred to as the “State Committee.” Where the Committee and State Party bylaws are in conflict, the State Party bylaws shall prevail.
Governing Authority and Duties
2.1 Duties of the Committee shall be:
- To perform such primary and election functions as required by law,
- To promote a positive image of the Democratic Party in the local community,
- To promote the development of Party organizations and activities,
- To seek and encourage qualified candidates for public office,
- To support Democratic nominees,
- To maintain appropriate records,
- To promote and add logistical support to the State Affirmative Action Program,
- To perform such other duties as may be required by the State Committee,
- To elect State Committee members,
- To determine Party Districts and Apportionment, and
- To raise funds for the above purposes.
Membership, Committee Districts, and Election of Members
3.1.1 Any person who resides in Paulding County and desires to support the Party and who declares himself or herself by a signed declaration to be a member of the Democratic Party, shall be entitled to membership in the Paulding County Democratic Committee.
3.1.2 Dues shall be $15 per person per year. No member will be denied participation for failure to pay.
3.2 Committee Districts
3.2.1 The County Committee shall consist of four (4) Districts relating to the County Commission Posts of Paulding County. Each County Commission Post shall be allocated four (4) elective Post Seat Holders, numbered “1” through “4” Each Post Seat Holder must reside in the applicable County Commission Post.
3.2.2 Any member of the Paulding County Democratic Committee as defined in section 3.1 is eligible to be elected as a Post Seat Holder.
3.2.3 The Post Seat Holders are the formal governing body of the County Committee.
3.3 Election of Members
3.3.1 Post Seat Holders are to be elected by Committee Post Caucus, a public meeting where members are present to elect those they wish to serve as their leadership.
3.3.2 Such Caucus shall be held within 45 days following the General Primary, the election that determines our Party nominees (regardless of office) for the November election.
3.3.3 One half of the Post Seat Holders shall be elected in Gubernatorial election years and the other half of the Post Seat Holders shall be elected in Presidential election years. Election shall be by secret ballot of Post Seat Holders.
3.3.4 All County Committee members who are registered to vote in Paulding County are eligible to vote for Post Seat Holders who reside in the same Post
3.3.5 The County Committee Chair shall appoint chairs of the Committee Post Caucuses, to oversee the entire caucus process. The Chair may also appoint members from each district to chair the caucus/elections process (distribute ballots, count ballots, provide final tally to the Caucus Chair for announcement, answer any questions, etc. for voters in that district) for each district.
3.3.6 If the Executive Committee does not officially set a time and place for the Caucus and the 45-day allotment passes, the Congressional District Chair shall set the time and place of the Caucus.
3.3.7 Public notice of the election shall be given by posting on the county Committee’s website and social networking sites, emailing of all committee members (or by US Mail if a committee member does not have email access), emailing of as many general members as is possible and by publishing the same in the newspaper of record for the County in two separate weeks in the preceding month before the closing of the qualifications for such office.
3.3.8 The candidate receiving the highest number of votes shall be elected without the necessity of a run-off.
3.3.9 Members shall take office on the first day of the first month after their election, and shall serve a 4-year term, ending the month of the General Primary for the seat’s designated yearly status (i.e. month of General Primary in the Gubernatorial or Presidential elections), unless affected by reapportionment.
3.3.10 Persons filling vacant committee seats shall serve out the remainder of the term of the person who vacated the seat.
3.3.11 When a member of the committee declares candidacy for elective office, they are deemed to have voluntarily resigned their seat as a committee member.
3.3.12 Elected Democratic officials may serve as ex-officio, non-voting members of the Committee.
Officers and Executive Committee
4.1. The Committee shall elect officers no later than December 31 of even numbered years, to take office January 1of the following year, or immediately following election, whichever is earlier. The new Chair shall immediately upon taking office notify the State Committee Chair and appropriate Congressional District Chair of his/her election.
4.2 The Committee shall elect from its membership a Chair, two Vice-Chairs, a Secretary and a Treasurer. When possible, at least one of the Vice-Chairs shall be of the opposite gender of the Chair. The Committee may from time to time expand the number of Vice- Chairs. The person receiving the majority of votes for election to an office shall be declared elected.
4.3 All County Committee members who are registered to vote in Paulding County are eligible to vote for officers.
4.4 Officers shall serve 2-year terms.
4.5 The Executive Committee shall consist of the officers and shall act on behalf of the Committee between Committee meetings. The Executive Committee shall meet at least ten (10) days prior to each Committee meeting for the purposes of collectively establishing and setting the agenda for the upcoming meeting and to conduct such other business as may be required.
4.6 The Executive Committee shall prepare a budget on an annual basis for approval by the County Committee no later than December 31st. The budget shall include the anticipated receipts and expenses on a timeline. Approval by the County Committee is required for the budget and for any modifications to the budget during the calendar year.
4.7 The Executive Committee may include as a non-voting member, a representative from the Young Democrats of Paulding. This representative shall be chosen by the Young Democrats of Paulding. The representative may be removed by a majority vote of the Executive Committee.
4.8 Upon expiration of term, all officers will turn over all records and official documents to their successors within fifteen (15) days after the election of the latter, all records, monies, and other materials pertaining to the Committee. All funds will be audited prior to transfer of finances.
Duties of Officers
5.1 Chair: the Chair shall have overall responsibility for County Committee affairs and shall be the official spokesperson for the Committee subject to the provisions of the State Charter and these Bylaws and to such directives as may be given from time to time by the Executive Committee. The Chair shall be the head of the County Committee and will preside at County Committee meetings. The Chair shall have the specific responsibility to formulate each year, with the Executive Committee, a Strategic Plan. The Chair may sign checks in the absence of the Treasurer.
5.2 First Vice-Chair: the First Vice-Chair shall act as Chair in the absence of the Chair and shall have the authority, powers and duties of the Chair. He or she shall ensure compliance with State Party Charter and Bylaws; compliance and updating of County Bylaws; parliamentary procedure in all business conducted by the County Committee.
5.3 Second Vice-Chair: the Second Vice-Chair shall act as Chair in the absence of the Chair and the First Vice-Chair and shall have all duties as entrusted to the First Vice-Chair. The Second Vice-Chair shall be responsible for all outreach to the community in the form of canvassing, recruiting poll watchers, voter registration and contact, phone banking, campaign materials, GOTV, fundraising, etc. This will include maintaining a strong community presence and increasing the positive visibility of the Committee.
5.4 Secretary: the Secretary shall be responsible for taking minutes at all County Committee and Executive Committee meetings and for presenting those minutes at the succeeding meetings of those respective groups. The Secretary will maintain current membership rolls and records of all official correspondence and will oversee Publicity and Membership activities. The Secretary will oversee the social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, website, etc.) and may form a Communications Committee if needed.
5.5 Treasurer: the Treasurer shall be responsible for maintaining accurate, up to date records of all expenditures and income to the Committee account and for depositing and disbursing funds in accordance with the budget and other approved expenditures. All funds received or dispersed must go through the County Committee bank account. The Treasurer will provide a written report of such to the Executive and County Committees at scheduled meetings. The Treasurer shall have the authority to disburse budgeted funds to authorized members. The Treasurer shall provide receipts for all expenditures and provide open and transparent access to this information to Committee members. The Treasurer may form a Finances Committee if needed.
State Committee Membership
6.1 The Committee must elect state committee members in accordance with the Democratic Party of Georgia Bylaws; refer to the DPG Bylaws for more details.
Vacancies and Removal
7.1.1 All vacancies in County Committee Posts shall be filled by election open to Committee members from that Post. Vacant Posts will remain vacant until an eligible person can be identified and elected.
7.1.2 All vacancies in the Executive Committee shall be filled by election open to all Committee members, provided at least three such members remain.
7.1.3 A member may resign by written notice to the Chairperson, and such resignation shall be effective immediately. An elected member who shall cease to have principal residence in the Post in which he or she was elected shall be deemed to have resigned effective upon his or her change of principal residence.
7.1.4 Should a Member’s seat or an Office become vacant due to death, illness or resignation, that seat or Office shall be declared vacant by the Chair and the vacancy shall be filled at the next scheduled meeting of the County Committee, provided the declaration of vacancy has been given at least ten (10) days in advance of the meeting.
7.2.1 Post Seat Holders and officers may be removed by the County Committee for cause, with reasonable notice, and with the opportunity to be heard, by a 2/3 vote of declared Democrats present who are registered to vote in Paulding County, provided a 40% quorum of Post Seat Holders is met.
7.2.2 Any person subject to removal shall receive written notice via Certified US Mail of the alleged reasons for removal.
7.2.3 The removal procedure shall be conducted by a subcommittee appointed by the Executive Committee Chair. Where the Chair is the subject of the removal procedure, the subcommittee shall be appointed by a majority of the other Executive Committee Officers.
7.2.4 The person to be removed shall have the right to be informed of all persons who will be witnesses against him or her and who will testify in support of the charges against him or her, at least ten days before a hearing on said charges before the full County Committee.
7.2.5 The person to be removed shall have the right to counsel and to present all witnesses, documents and arguments in support of his/her position. The subcommittee which has tendered the charges may likewise have counsel and present witnesses, documents and arguments in support of its position.
7.2.6 Should a Member’s seat or an Office become vacant, that seat or Office shall be declared vacant by the Chair and the vacancy shall be filled at the next scheduled meeting of the County Committee, provided the declaration of vacancy has been given at least ten (10) days in advance of the meeting.
7.2.7 Any Post Seat Holder missing three consecutive regularly scheduled meetings without prior notification (written, email, text or phone call) to the Chair shall have his/her seat declared vacant by the Chair for lack of active participation.
7.2.8 Should a Post Seat or Office become vacant due to removal, the vacancy shall be filled at the next scheduled meeting of the Committee after the meeting at which the removal was accomplished.
Committee Functions, Records, and Certification
8.1 The Committee shall maintain records of all financial transactions, kept on a calendar year basis and a list of all unpaid obligations. Financial records shall be audited each year with a report provided to the Committee no later than the March meeting following the end of the organization year. Reports of financial status will be made at each County Committee meeting. An annual report will be submitted to the State Democratic Party and the State Ethics Commission when required.
8.2 All receipts and disbursements will go through the County Committee account. All expenditures will bear the signature of the Treasurer and one other authorized Executive Committee member. Each expenditure shall be accompanied by a voucher detailing expense amount, check number, authorization, and purpose.
8.3 Three copies of the Bylaws and Officer’s names will be delivered to the County Clerk for stamp. One copy will remain with the Clerk; one copy will remain with the County Committee; one copy will be filed with the State Party
Meetings and Voting
9.1 Regular Meetings – the Committee shall meet regularly at least quarterly. The Committee Chair may call special meetings. Where meetings are not held in a previously designated time and place, all County Committee members will receive 10 days written notice (via email or US Mail). Every effort will be made to contact the general membership of the Committee. Any special meeting notifications will also be posted on the county Committee’s website and the county paper of record will be notified for publication of the date and time.
9.2 Emergency meetings – emergency meetings may be called by the Chair upon five (5) days’ notice.
9.3 Quorum – a quorum for conducting Committee business shall be 40% of the Post Seat Holders.
9.4 No person shall be entitled to more than one vote. Secret ballot shall be permissible only when electing Committee members and State Convention Delegates.
9.5 All meetings of each body of the Committee shall be open to the public unless the Committee votes to go into Executive Session.
9.6 Unless otherwise provided for, Robert’s Rules of Order, most recently revised, shall govern the conduct of all meetings.
10.1 The Committee will establish a Diversity and Inclusion Subcommittee whose members will participate in the State Affirmative Action Committee.
10.2 The Executive Committee may establish any other subcommittees as deemed necessary to conduct the business of the Committee.
10.3 Subcommittee chairs can be appointed by the Chair with the approval of the Committee.
10.4 Committee chairs must be registered to vote in Paulding County but any declared Democrat may serve on a subcommittee.
11.1 There shall be no discrimination in the conduct of the Committee business on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, race, religion, color, handicap (as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act), national origin or age.
11.2 The Committee, and affiliates, are prohibited from supporting a Democratic candidate who has opposition during a primary or Democratic opposition during a special election.
11.3 No Committee member shall use his or her office to support (l) any Democratic candidate in a contested Democratic primary election or (2) any candidate who has Democratic opposition in a special election.
11.4 No Committee member shall publicly support another candidate other than the Democratic nominee in a General Election.
11.5 The endorsement of, support of or contribution to a candidate of another party or to an opponent of the Democratic nominee may result in the expulsion of such person from the Committee.
11.6 Any contributions by the Committee to a candidate for public office shall be accompanied by a cover letter which shall state in substance, “This contribution is made on the express condition that, after election, you remain a member of the Democratic Party. Your acceptance and/or use of this contribution are your personal acknowledgement and contract that should you win election yet at any time prior to the end of your term change parties or leave the Democratic Party, you will repay these amounts and any costs, including attorney’s fees, associated with seeking such repayment.”
11.7 The Committee may recognize and allow affiliation of such county organizations as it deems appropriate.
12.1. These Bylaws may be amended at any Committee meeting by a 2/3 vote of declared Democrats present provided a quorum of 40% of Post Seat Holders is met and at least 10 days written notice of said amendments has been provided to all members and approved by the State Committee.
- Date: July 8, 2017
- Author: Joanne Bullington
- Summary: Revisions per June 24 Formation Meeting; Revised Hierarchy Diagram; Included sample Affidavit and Revision History table
- Date: July 17, 2017
- Author: Joanne Bullington
- Summary: Submitted for review
- Date: July 24, 2017
- Author: Joanne Bullington
- Summary: Revised per Arnold Martin
- Date: July 28, 2017
- Author: Joanne Bullington
- Summary: Revised per Melva Steps – Submitted to County Affairs Committee
- Date: September 30, 2017
- Author: Joanne Bullington
- Summary: Approved by State Committee.