BYLAWS OF THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY OF LEE COUNTY, FLORIDA
DEMOCRATIC EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE (DEC)
1. DUTIES OF OFFICERS
A. General Provisions applicable to all officers:
1) Accountability for funds: Officers in control of DEC funds with check writing authority shall be accountable for funds of the DEC and liable for proper expenditure for authorized purposes only.
2) Check writing authority: No check shall be written without the two signatures of the DEC Chair and Treasurer. The DEC Chair, or the Vice Chair, in the absence of the Chair, is authorized to sign a check in any amount for budgeted items and an amount not to exceed $200.00 for non-budgeted items.
3) Bonding: The DEC shall furnish adequate bond for the DEC Chair, Vice Chair and Treasurer in an amount not less than that required by Florida Statute. No bonds shall be released until all records have been transferred to the successors in office and until all accounts have been audited and approved by the DEC.
B. DEC Chair. It shall be the duty of the DEC Chair to:
1) Preside at all meetings of the DEC.
2) Appoint all standing committee chairs.
3) Appoint all special or ad-hoc committees and caucuses chairs unless otherwise directed by the DEC.
4) Advise the Executive Secretary of any special meeting in sufficient time for the Executive Secretary to send notice of such meeting to the membership.
5) Countersign all checks issued by the Treasurer unless previously signed by the Vice Chair in the absence of the DEC Chair.
6) Serve as a member of all standing committees and caucuses.
7) Do all those things required of the County Chair by Florida Statute and the Charter and Bylaws of the Florida Democratic Party (FDP).
8) Serve as the official spokesperson and represent the DEC whenever necessary or appropriate.
9) Submit an annual budget showing projected revenues and expenses to the DEC not later than January 1st of each year.
10) Organize and coordinate the activities of the DEC in fulfillment of its objectives and responsibilities to registered Democratic voters and the Democratic Party.
11) The County Chair has the option of appointing the following:
C. Vice Chair. It shall be the duty of the Vice Chair to:
1) Perform the duties of the DEC Chair during his/her absence or inability to perform. The Vice Chair shall exercise all the powers and be subject to all responsibilities herein given to or imposed upon the DEC Chair.
2) Serve as Chair of the Membership and Credentials Committee.
3) Assist the Chair in the development and implementation of a plan to strengthen the outreach of the Party to all its various constituency groups.
4) Perform other duties as the DEC Chair directs or requests.
D. Executive Secretary. It shall be the duty of the Executive Secretary to:
1) Keep and file all correspondence related to the DEC and perform such other duties as the DEC Chair directs.
2) In coordination with the DEC Chair, prepare meeting agendas and email written notices of each:
a) Regular meeting of the DEC to each qualified member at least ten (10) days prior to the date of the meeting.
b) Special meeting of the DEC within forty (40) hours of receiving notice from the DEC Chair calling for such meeting.
3) Furnish rosters of DEC members, officers, district coordinators, committee chairs, and members to all DEC members within thirty (30) days after any organizational meeting and quarterly thereafter.
4) Make all reports regarding membership to the Lee County Supervisor of Elections (SOE) and Party Affairs of the FDP as required by Florida Statutes and FDP Bylaws.
E. Recording Secretary. It shall be the duty of the Recording Secretary to:
1) Attend and keep minutes and records of all meetings of the DEC, and file a copy of all minutes with the FDP within (20) days of their approval by the DEC.
2) Attend and keep minutes and records of all meetings of the Steering Committee.
F. Treasurer. It shall be the duty of the Treasurer to:
1) Deposit any and all funds in such bank or banks as the DEC may direct, and to be responsible for all funds of the DEC, as required by Florida Statutes.
2) Keep a record of all receipts and expenditures.
3) Pay all bills approved by the DEC.
4) Render an accounting of all receipts and expenditures at meetings of the DEC or as the Chair or Finance Chair may direct.5) Prepare an annual report to be submitted to the audit committee not later than February 1, covering the financial activities of the preceding calendar year and detailing receipts and expenditures in accordance with a chart of accounts to be approved by the DEC by Standing Rule.
6) Transfer all books, records, and reports to the incoming Treasurer and complete the preparation of the financial report for the period during which he/she served to insure an orderly transition.
7) The Treasurer shall submit a quarterly financial report to the SOE of Lee County and such other reports as required by State law.
G. Deputy Treasurer. It shall be the duty of the Deputy Treasurer to:
1) Assist the Treasurer with data entry, record keeping and generating reports.
2) Provide monthly Treasurer’s Reports to the DEC in the absence of the Treasurer.
3) Perform other duties as the Treasurer requests.
H. State Committeeman and State Committeewoman. It shall be the duty of the State Committeeman and State Committeewoman to:
1) Serve as liaison between the FDP and the DEC.
2) Serve as liaison between the DEC and the Democratic clubs of Lee County and assist in certification efforts of newly organized clubs.
3) Serve as ex-officio member of the Steering Committee, Campaign, and Certification Committee of the DEC.
4) Serve as elected member of the FDP Executive Committee and ex-officio member of the 14th Congressional District Committee and the District Delegate Coordinating Committee of the 14th Congressional District.
5) Attend all organizational meetings and all FDP Executive Committee meetings and special state meetings designated by the Chair of the FDP.
6) Submit all resolutions adopted by the DEC relevant to the state or national issues to the FDP and to the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and work to encourage their support of these resolutions.
7) Work to obtain state and national financial and candidate support for the DEC, Lee County candidates and 14th Congressional District candidates.
8) Make periodic reports to the DEC concerning their activities.
2. MEMBERSHIP AND MEETINGS
A. Membership: Elected Members:
Definition: Elected members shall be defined as those persons elected pursuant to FDP Bylaws Article V, Section 1.1.4 and those elected by the DEC to fill vacancies in precincts or districts. Once a person is elected in a precinct or district, even if that person should move out of that precinct or district and be appointed at-large or to fill a vacancy in the precinct or fill a vacancy in the precinct or district into which he or she moved, for the purpose of eligibility to seek office, such person shall be classified as an elected member for the duration of that term. If a vacancy does not exist in the precinct or district where the member moves, a special at-large status shall be created for that member not to be counted against the total number of appointed members available to that county.
1. Precinct System: The elected membership of the DEC shall consist of a man and a woman from each precinct who are registered Democrats, and who reside in, are registered to vote in, and are elected from the precinct they are to represent. Should the Democratic registration of any precinct total more than one thousand (1,000) as of January 1 of a year in which qualifying for election to DEC occurs, an additional one (1) man and one (1) woman are entitled to be elected to represent all such precincts. They shall be elected by a plurality vote on the First Primary Ballot of each presidential election year. At any time a precinct totals one thousand (1,000) registered Democrats or when new precincts are created, additional DEC positions may be created. Such positions shall be filled by the DEC according to its procedure for filling vacancies.
2. Optional Precinct System: If Lee County were to consist of fewer than two hundred (200) precincts, the elected membership of the DEC shall consist of a man and a woman from each precinct who are registered Democrats, and who reside in, are registered to vote in, and are elected from the precinct they are to represent. Should the voter registration of any precinct total more than one thousand (1,000) as of January 1 of a year in which qualifying for election to the DEC occurs, the DEC may, by amendment to its Bylaws, and upon immediate notification to the SOE of Lee County by certified mail, and upon immediate notification to the FDP Chair by certified mail, elect an additional one (1) man and one (1) woman to represent all such precincts. They shall be elected by a plurality vote on the first primary ballot of each Presidential election year. At any time a precinct totals one thousand (1,000) registered voters or when new precincts are created, additional DEC positions may be created. Such positions shall be filled by the DEC according to its procedures for filling vacancies.
3. District System: If Lee County should consist of more than one hundred (100) precincts, the elected membership of the DEC may, by a majority vote of all DEC members prior to December 31 of each year before the year in which an election for the office of President of the United States is to be held, consist of a man and a woman who are registered Democrats, and who reside in, are registered to vote in, and are elected from election districts. The chair of the county DEC shall notify the FDP Chair of such decision by certified mail. The FDP shall request, no later than December 31, 1983 and every fourth year thereafter, the SOE, with approval of the board of County Commissioners, or the body having ultimate responsibility for the conduct of elections within the county, to provide for election districts as nearly equal in number of registered voters as possible. Such districts shall be created in accordance with the following requirements:
a. The election districts shall have as equal a number of precincts as possible.
b. The number of registered voters in any election district shall not vary by more than ten percent (10%) of the average number of registered voters in all election districts.
c. No precinct shall be divided in the formation of districts. The DEC, adopting district systems pursuant to this Section shall file notice of same with the FDP Chair, the Florida Department of State, and its board of County Commissioners, or the body having ultimate responsibility for the conduct of elections within Lee County. Said body shall forthwith direct the SOE, or other appropriate official within Lee County to complete such formalities as may be necessary to conduct elections within Lee County, to complete such formalities as may be necessary to conduct elections within such districts.
4. Election of Members: DEC members shall qualify and be elected to office at such times and in such manner as provided by Florida Statutes. 5. Term of Office: Elected members of the DEC shall take office on the first day of the month following each presidential general election and shall serve for a term of two (2) years.
5. Attendance: The State Chair, First Vice Chair, Vice Chairs, Secretary, and Treasurer of the FDP shall be exempt from the attendance requirements of the Lee County DEC to which they may belong.
B. Automatic Members:
Definition: Automatic members shall be defined as those who are members by virtue of Florida Statutes or those who are members by virtue of DEC Bylaws provision naming Lee County Democratic elected officials, presidents of duly chartered Democratic Clubs, or presidents of chartered local Democratic caucus chapters who reside in Lee County. Such members shall serve for the duration of their term of office. Automatic members shall enjoy voting privileges, however, they shall not serve as officers of the DEC.
Attendance: Automatic members shall not be required to meet attendance requirements. Automatic members shall not be computed when determining a quorum.
C. Appointed Members:
Definition: Membership of the DEC may include an additional ten percent (10%) of the total elected membership to which entitled. These members shall be appointed by the DEC Chair and approved by a majority vote of the membership of the DEC present and voting. Appointed members shall be registered Democrats residing in Lee County. Appointed members shall serve at-large and shall enjoy voting and other privileges and responsibilities of membership except holding office. Selection of appointed members shall be made in order to achieve political, economic, or minority balance within the DEC.
1. Term of Office: The term of office for appointed members shall be one (1) year commencing with the date of appointment, however, it shall expire immediately prior to the commencement of the organizational meeting of the next committee. Said members may be appointed.
2. Special At-Large Status: At any time after the election of officers, the DEC may allow, at the request of a Democratic Party elected official from the county, state, or DNC level, a special at-large status for that person. Such positions shall not be included in the DEC’s appointed membership quota. If the elected official is an elected member of the DEC, a vacancy would be created in the district or precinct that he or she represents. Said vacancy shall be filled in accordance with the DEC Bylaws.
3. Vacancies: An office shall be deemed vacant when a member accumulates three (3) unexcused absences in any one (1) calendar year. Vacancies on the DEC shall be filled by action of the DEC within sixty (60) days in accordance with Florida Statutes. After a vacancy has existed for sixty (60) days, it may be filled by the FDP State Chair. Those persons appointed to fill precinct or district vacancies must be registered Democrats residing within the precinct or district that they are appointed to represent. An absence is excused for reason of illness, business, out-of-town or other reasonable excuse, with prior notification to an officer.
1 . Term of Office: Terms of office are for two (2) years, unless otherwise provided for in the DEC’s Bylaws.
2. Vacancies: In the event of a vacancy in the office of DEC, a meeting shall be held within forty-five (45) days, upon written notice to members of at least fifteen (15) days, to elect a new Chair. Notice of vacancy shall be sent by certified mail to the FDP Chair within ten (10) days of said vacancy. Vacancies on the DEC shall not be filled by action of the DEC within the period from the time the DEC Chair position is declared vacant until the election of a DEC Chair to replace the previous Chair. In the event that a vacancy in the office of DEC Chair is filled by a person of the same sex as the DEC Vice Chair, or vice versa, the requirement that they be of the opposite sex shall be waived for the unexpired term.
3. Leave of Absence: Any officer of the DEC seeking the Democratic nomination for public office shall take a leave of absence from DEC office commencing at the time of opening a campaign account for said public office and extending for the duration of the campaign. The vacancy created shall be filled by the DEC for the interim period.
1. Failure to Call: In the event a meeting is not called for a period of two (2) calendar quarters, the Chair of the congressional district in which the DEC is primarily located, or the congressional district Vice Chair at the direction of the congressional district chair, shall call a meeting for the purpose of reorganization upon written notice of at least two (2) weeks to all members of the membership list on file with the SOE. The FDP Chair shall be notified by certified mail.
2. Organizational Meeting: The DEC shall hold an organization meeting, called by the DEC Chair of the preceding committee, within thirty (30) days after said committee members take office.
F. Agenda: The organizational meeting shall be called to order by the DEC Chair who shall chair the meeting until the election of the new Chair who shall then assume the chair. The order of business shall be as follows:
2. Pledge of Allegiance
3. Roll Call
4. Credentials Report
5. Election of Chair
6. Election of State Committeewoman
7. Election of State Committeeman
8. Election of Vice Chair
9. Election of Secretary
10. Election of Treasurer
11. Election of Any Other Officers
Voting shall be one (1) vote for each member.
Voting by Appointed Members: The term of office for appointed members expires prior to the commencement of the organizational meeting occurring within thirty (30) days following the election of precinct committeemen and precinct committeewomen, therefore, appointed members shall not vote for officers at the organizational meeting. In the event an office becomes vacant during the term, appointed members shall have voting privileges.
H. Policy and Procedure:
Committees: The DEC shall establish the following committees to further the goals and policies of the FDP:
1. 5.1.1 Diversity and Inclusion Committee which shall work in conjunction with the FDP Diversity and Inclusion Committee.
2. 5.1.2 Young Democrats Committee which will work with the Florida Young Democrats.
I. Membership Lists:
The names and addresses of the members of the DEC, as well as the officers of same, shall be furnished to the FDP Chair immediately after the organizational meeting. Changes in membership shall be furnished in writing to the FDP Chair within ten (10) days. A complete and updated membership list shall be sent to the FDP Chair by January 31 of each year.
Minutes shall be kept of all meetings and shall be presented at the next meeting for approval. Copies shall be sent to the FDP Chair within twenty (20) days following such meetings.
K. Annual Audit:
There shall be annual audits of the financial condition of the DEC for each calendar year ending December 31 in compliance with applicable Florida Statutes and conducted by qualified examiners who shall not be members of the DEC. Audits shall be conducted in substantial compliance with standard accounting procedures. Copies shall be retained by the Chair of the DEC for the examination by any member. Copies shall be furnished to the SOE and to the FDP Chair prior to April 1 of the ensuing year. The State Chair may have a qualified examiner conduct an audit of the DEC for any reason at the expense of the FDP.
L. DEC Policy Manual:
The DEC shall make available to each new Committeeman or Committeewoman a Policy Manual by email or on the website of the Democratic Party of Lee County under the Bylaws at leecountydems.org which contain current standardized guidelines and practices for Party operations.
The DEC receiving Party assessment fees shall submit a campaign plan detailing the expenditure of such fees to the FDP Chair and the Budget and Finance Committee for approval.
N. Distribution of Funds:
The distribution of DEC funds among members is forbidden. The DEC may reimburse its members for actual travel expenses incurred at regular or special meetings in those cases where the meeting is more than thirty (30) miles in each direction from the member’s home. Payment is then authorized at the accepted mileage rate reimbursed to FDP Executive Committee members and shall be paid out of DEC funds.
O. Party Assessment Fees:
Party assessment fees shall be two percent (2%) of the annual salary of the office sought by the respective candidate. All assessments shall be remitted to the FDP and distributed as described herein. If the DEC endorses, or intends to endorse, certify, screen, or otherwise recommend one (1) or more candidates for nomination, it shall forfeit all party assessments which would otherwise be returned to the DEC and such assessments shall be remitted instead to the FDP Executive Committee. The FDP Chair shall return the two percent (2%) party assessment fee to the DEC upon the State Chair’s determination that the DEC is in compliance with all Florida Statutes and all FDP Charter rules and bylaws.
A. General: The DEC shall have a Steering Committee with membership and charges as prescribed in Article V of the FDP Constitution, and it hereby establishes the following Standing Committees, with their membership and charges as indicated below. All Committees consisting of five or more members should be represented by at least one member from each Lee County Commission District.
B. Membership and Credentials Committee: The Membership and Credentials Committee shall be composed of not less than five (5) members of the DEC, who shall check the loyalty of every Democrat recommended to fill vacancies on the DEC. The Membership and Credentials committee shall have the responsibility to determine vacancies; make recommendations for filling any vacancies on the DEC (see 3. A. above); examine the background and qualifications of all appointees; make recommendations to the DEC for final approval; and, receive resignations. The Membership and Credentials Committee Chair shall ensure Precinct Committeemen and Precinct Committeewomen with copies of the then current Precinct Organization containing copies of the Charter and Bylaws of the FDP and Constitution and Bylaws of the Democratic Party of Lee County and their precinct list. The Membership and Credentials Committee Chair shall investigate all excuses for non-attendance of the members at regular and special meetings and shall determine whether good or sufficient reason exists for any unexcused absences. It shall investigate reports of activities of a member involving alleged violation of the member’s oath of office, and also of a DEC person who is not carrying out the responsibility of his/her appointment within his/her precinct and make finding thereon. The Membership and Credentials committee shall then report its findings and make recommendations thereon to the full DEC for its action and final determination.
C. Finance and Fund Raising Committee: The Finance and Fund Raising Committee shall be composed of not less than five (5) members of the DEC who shall study, report, and recommend to the Steering Committee and DEC ways and means of raising funds for the purpose of maintaining this organization and promoting campaigns to elect Democratic nominees.
D. Candidate Recruitment and Appointments Committee: The Candidate and Recruitment Committee shall be composed of at least five (5) members recommended by the DEC Chair and including the Vice Chair who shall preside as Chair of the Committee. All Committee members shall be approved by a majority vote of the DEC. The committee should interview prospective candidates and appointees for office and actively solicit competent and responsible Democrats to run for office and seek appointments. The committee shall be available to aid prospective candidates by giving them information concerning such areas as: qualifications for office, campaign organization, and means of acquiring support. The committee shall present recommendations for appointment of candidates at the next meeting of the DEC following the application or qualifying deadline for the purpose of introducing the candidate or recommended appointment to the general membership by outlining their qualifications for office and giving them the opportunity to express their platform, goals or programs. The committee shall establish liaison with the Governor’s office and other governmental bodies which make appointments and report to the DEC all openings and the outcome of DEC recommendations to those authorities.
E. Young Democrats Committee: The DEC Chair shall appoint a committee of one or more members of the DEC and such other persons as the DEC Chair deems appropriate to cultivate interest among young persons in the objectives and principles of the Democratic Party and to stimulate active participation of young Democrats in the activities of the organized party. The committee shall seek to establish liaison and form and support clubs in all public and private high schools, colleges, and universities in Lee County.
F. Audit Committee: The Audit Committee shall consist of not less than three (3) DEC members. The committee shall be responsible for arranging an annual audit of the financial condition of the DEC for the calendar year ending December 31st in compliance with applicable Florida Statutes. The committee shall be responsible for identifying a qualified examiner who shall not be a member of the DEC to conduct the audit. The audit shall be conducted in substantial compliance with standard accounting procedures. The examiner’s report to the audit committee must be submitted so that the committee can make its report to the DEC no later than the March meeting following the year being audited. Copies of the audit shall be retained by the DEC Chair for examination by any member thereof and copies shall be furnished to the SOE of Lee County and to the FDP Chair prior to April 1st of the ensuing year. The FDP Chair may have a qualified examiner conduct an audit of the DEC for any reason at the expense of the FDP. (Refer to Florida Statute 103.121 subparagraph 3 and FDP Bylaws section 5 subparagraph 5.4)
G. Diversity and Inclusion Committee: There shall be an Diversity and Inclusion Committee appointed by the DEC Chair to work in conjunction with the FDP Diversity and Inclusion Committee.
4. DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF PRECINCT COMMITTEE PERSONS
Membership and Credentials Committee Chair shall ensure that the current Precinct Organization Manual, as well as the Charter and Bylaws of the FDP and Constitution and Bylaws of the Democratic Party of Lee County, are available on the party’s web site and that Precinct Committeemen and Precinct Committeewomen are provided with links to the above pages. The Chair shall also provide each Precinct Committeeman and Precinct Committeewoman with a .pdf copy of their precinct list.
The vote on all questions before the DEC shall be by direct vote on the question. The DEC Chair shall declare all votes and may call for a vote on any question by voice vote, by division, or by a call of the roll; provided, however, that upon the request of any member, a rising vote shall be called or the showing of hands. By a request of five or more members, the DEC Chair shall take the roll call vote by ayes and nays.
A member who is unable to attend a meeting of the DEC may designate a proxy utilizing the Proxy Form set forth herein as an attachment or reasonable facsimile thereof. The proxy shall be a registered Lee County Democratic voter, resident of the same precinct as the absent member. However, the proxy may not be a member of the DEC. The written proxy must be sworn to before a Notary Public or the proxy may be validated by two DEC members signing as witnesses. The holder of the proxy shall be given the rights in the proceedings of the specific meeting as if the proxy were a precinct committee member. Said proxy may be in substantially the same form as the attached. The proxy must be submitted to the Chair of the Membership and Credentials Committee not later than the call to order by the DEC Chair. Proxies may not account for more than twenty five percent (25%)) in computing a quorum and shall not be considered in the fulfillment of attendance requirements.
The DEC shall have general authority to discipline individual members in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised.
8. GOVERNING DOCUMENTS AND POLICIES
In the event any portion of the governing documents and policies thereof is in conflict with the Charter and Bylaws of the FDP those rules shall take precedent.
These Bylaws may be amended by a quorum of the full membership of the DEC at a DEC meeting, provided that the Executive Secretary gives the full membership at least ten (10) days written notice including a copy of the proposed amendment(s) together with the portion of the Bylaws it changes. For the purposes of amending the Bylaws, membership shall be limited to only elected and appointed at-large members.
10. EFFECTIVE DATE
Upon adoption, these rules shall become part of the permanent records of the DEC and shall be made available to the membership for all meetings of the DEC, and shall be effective as of the Meeting to be held(?)
If any Article, Section, or Subsection of this amended Constitution is found to be invalid for any reason, such finding or ruling shall not invalidate or put in jeopardy either the complete Constitution or any other Article, Section, or Subsection of this amended Constitution.
12. CLUBS, ORGANIZATIONS, AND CAUCUSES
A. Statewide Clubs, Organizations and Caucuses: Organization of statewide Democratic clubs, organizations and caucuses shall be prohibited without the recommendation of the FDP Chair and a two-thirds vote of approval by the FDP Central Committee, unless otherwise provided herein. The charter of such clubs, organizations and caucus shall be entirely within the jurisdiction of the FDP.
B. Democratic Club Charters:
1. Jurisdiction: The charter of a Democratic club shall be entirely within the jurisdiction of the DEC where the majority of the membership resides. The DEC shall not be authorized to establish a maximum number of Democratic clubs for Lee County.
2. Requirement for Chartering: It shall be the duty of the DEC to provide Democratic clubs with copies of the standard bylaws, applications for chartering and recertification, and procedural guidelines for same, and any other forms and information necessary for establishing and operating said club. Democratic club bylaws shall be in compliance with DEC bylaws, the Charter and Bylaws of the FDP, and Florida Statutes and shall include the following, unless otherwise provided herein; the anti-discrimination policies of the FDP, a provision prohibiting endorsement in primary elections, prohibiting the endorsement of anyone other than the Democratic nominee in general elections, a provision requiring votes by secret ballot for officers and directors only; a provision for adding amendments to the standard bylaws, a provision prohibiting proxy voting, and a provision that the quorum of any meeting of a Democratic club shall be ten percent (10%) or twenty percent (20%) based on the total membership of the club. With the exception of the organizational meeting, the standard club bylaws shall include a forty-five (45) day membership requirement prior to a member being permitted to vote or participate in any club election for officers or board members. Prior to being chartered, prospective clubs must submit a packet that includes a copy of the completed standard bylaws, an application for a charter, and a list of officers and members to the Certification Committee, composed of the DEC Chair, State Committeeman, and the State Committeewoman of the DEC in Lee County. Should one (1) person hold two (2) of these offices, the Vice Chair of the DEC shall be a member of the Certification Committee. With at least two (2) of the DEC officers signing the application, a recommendation to approve or to reject the club shall be submitted to the DEC for ratification. Upon approval, the signed application for charter and the club packet of information shall be sent by the DEC Chair to the FDP Chair and to the FDP Chair of the Committee on Clubs, Organizations, and Caucuses. The FDP Committee on Clubs, Organizations, and Caucuses shall review the packet and shall recommend approval or disapproval to the FDP Chair. Once the FDP Chair approves, the FDP Central Committee shall make the final decision. Certificates of charter for approved clubs shall be sent to the DEC Chair for presentation to the club.
3. Charter Recertification: In July of every odd numbered year, Democratic Clubs shall submit an application for a Certificate of Compliance to determine their compliance with the Charter and Bylaws of the FDP, Florida Statutes, and bylaws of the DEC. Clubs shall submit applications for recertification with a copy of their current bylaws, officers, and membership to the DEC Certification Committee. The DEC Certification Committee shall review the application and bylaws and shall issue a Certificate of Compliance unless it is determined the club is in violation of the Charter and Bylaws of the FDP, Florida Statutes, or the Bylaws of the DEC. If it is determined a club is in violation, it shall be so notified and shall have sixty (60) days from receipt of notification to correct the violations(s). If the violations(s) is not corrected by the end of the said period, the DEC Certification Committee may recommend the revocation of the club’s charter to the DEC. In the event such recommendation is made, said club shall be so notified. Notice of revocation shall also be given to the FDP Chair and to the FDP Chair of the Committee on Clubs, Organizations, and Caucuses. Charter revocation shall result in the forfeiture of all rights and privileges of the use of the word Democrat, Democratic, or derivative thereof.
4. Membership: The DEC may require a Democratic club to have a minimum number of members prior to chartering, unless otherwise provided herein.
5. Annual Party Contribution: In January of each year, each Democratic club chartered under the rules of the FDP shall pay an annual contribution based on membership as of December 31 of the preceding year to the DEC based on the following:
Clubs with 0 to 50 members………………..…………….$ 25.00
Clubs with 51 to 100 members..…………………………….$ 50.00
Clubs with 101 to 300 members..…..……..……..…………..$ 75.00
Clubs with 301 to 500 members……………………….……$ 100.00
Clubs with 501 to 750 members ……………………………$ 150.00
Clubs with 751 to 1000 members ……….………….…….…$ 250.00
Clubs with over 1000 members …………….…..…….…….$ 500.00
Any club chartered after January 1, 1985, will pay a contribution based on the number of members at the time of chartering which is consistent with the annual party contribution fee schedule. Eighty percent (80%) of the contribution shall remain with the DEC and twenty percent (20%) shall be remitted to the FDP no later than April 1st of that year.
6. Grievances: Unless otherwise provided herein, disputes and grievances involving Democratic clubs may be resolved by the DEC Chair, State Committeeman, and State Committeewoman. Should one (1) person hold two (2) of these offices, the Vice Chair of the DEC shall also be involved in said resolution. Such resolution may be appealed to the DEC whose decision shall be final unless appealed to the Judicial Council no later than forty-five (45) days from the date of said decision.
7. Dissolution: Upon dissolution of a club for any reason, the club’s assets and funds, after all debts have been satisfied, shall become the property of the DEC.
C. Chartered Caucuses:
The bylaws of all chartered caucuses shall be in compliance with the Charter and Bylaws of the FDP and Florida Statutes. Notwithstanding the provisions of other sections of the FDP Bylaws, the rules and procedures shall be governed by the provisions set forth herein. Each chartered caucus shall submit a Certification of Compliance to the FDP Central Committee in July of every odd numbered year. The Certification of Compliance shall include a copy of the chartered caucus current bylaws, a list of its officers, a list of its local chapters and their officers, and a general summary of the chartered caucus’ sponsored events and activities during the preceding twelve (12) months. The FDP Central Committee may request review and recommendation of the FDP Committee on Clubs, Caucuses, and Organizations.
1. Charter: The charter of all caucuses and all changes and amendments thereto, shall be approved by the FDP Central Committee. The FDP Central Committee may suspend or revoke the charter upon violation of the provisions of the FDP Charter or Bylaws.
2. Local Chapters: Any chartered caucus shall have the authority, subject to the provisions set forth herein, to charter local chapters at the county level. The Bylaws of such chapters shall be in compliance with the FDP Charter and Bylaws, Florida Statutes, and the Bylaws of the caucus under the DEC.
a. Charter Procedure: Proposed local chapters shall apply to the FDP Caucus President of the caucus for charters. Upon approval, the FDP Caucus President shall submit a proposed charter to the Caucus officers for approval. Upon final approval of said charter, the FDP Caucus President shall notify the Chair of the DEC and the FDP Chair. Upon final approval, the signed application for charter and the caucus packet of information shall be sent by the FDP Caucus, to the FDP Chair, and to the FDP Chair of the Committee on Clubs, Organizations, and Caucuses. The FDP Clubs, Organizations and Caucuses Committee shall review the packet and shall recommend approval or disapproval to the FDP Chair. Once the FDP Chair approves, the FDP Central Committee shall make the final decision. Certificates for charter for approved local caucus chapters shall be sent to the FDP State Caucus for presentation to the local chapter.
b. Charter Recertification: Local chapters shall apply to the FDP Caucus for charter recertification in July of every odd numbered year. Chapters shall submit applications for recertification and copies of their current bylaws, officers, and membership. If it is determined a local caucus chapter is in violation, it shall be so notified and shall have sixty (60) days from receipt of notification to correct the violations(s). If the violation(s) is not corrected by the end of the said period, the FDP Caucus may recommend the revocation of the local caucus chapter’s charter. In the event such recommendation is made, said local caucus chapter shall be so notified. Notice of revocation shall also be given to the FDP Chair, the DEC Chair and to the FDP Chair of the Committee on Clubs, Organizations, and Caucuses. Charter revocation shall result in the forfeiture of all rights and privileges of the use of the word Democrat, Democratic, or derivative thereof. Failure to be recertified may be appealed to the FDP Chair by the president of the applicable local chapter or the president of the caucus.
c. Grievances: Unless otherwise provided herein, disputes and grievances involving Democratic caucus chapters may be resolved by the president and officers of the FDP Caucus. Such resolution may be appealed to the FDP Judicial Council no later than forty-five (45) days from the date of said decision.
d. Dissolution: Upon dissolution of a local caucus chapter for any reason, the local caucus chapter’s assets and funds, after all debts have been satisfied, shall become the property of the FDP Caucus of charter.
D. Presidential Conventions and Gubernatorial Conferences
1. Delegates: Elected delegate positions for FDP conventions and conferences shall be apportioned by the DEC based upon Democratic voter registration and Democratic strength. The FDP Executive Committee may provide for automatic or appointed positions.
E. Amendments, Bylaws, and Rules/Bylaws
1. Rules/Bylaws: The rules or bylaws of official components of the FDP and any changes or amendments thereto, shall be filed with the FDP within thirty (30) days following adoption.