Proposed 2018 By-laws

Proposed bylaws March 2018.docx

ARTICLE IThe name of the Club shall be the North Port Democratic Club (“the Club”).

ARTICLE IIThe object of the Club shall be:

  • stimulate active interest in political and governmental affairs;
  • strengthen and further the ideals and principles of the Democratic Party
  • to provide reasonable and ongoing financial support to the county Democratic Executive Committee
  • promote participation among Democrats
  • support and elect the duly selected nominees of the Democratic Party in national, state, and local campaigns
  • foster good fellowship among Democrats
  • In all partisan contests in Primary elections, no candidate will be endorsed by the Club. In partisan contests in General Elections, only the Democratic nominee may be endorsed by the Club


Democrats registered to vote or residing in Florida interested in the objectives of the Club shall be eligible for membership. No other residency restriction may be placed upon membership or the privileges of membership in the Club. In accordance with Article VI of the Florida Democratic Party Bylaws, except for the organizational meeting of the Club, those members permitted to vote in any Club election for officers or board members must have been a member of the Club at least forty-five (45) days prior to the date of such election. Officers and Directors shall be required to execute the Loyalty Oath in the form included in the Bylaws of the Florida Democratic Party.


Section 1: Annual dues shall be determined following an annual evaluation by the Board of the dues contributed by Club members. The Board shall make a recommendation annually to the Clubs’ membership as to the amount of the dues assessment. A change in Club dues shall be enacted only upon a majority vote of a quorum of those present and voting at a regular Club meeting considering a change in the dues assessment.   Dues shall be payable to the Treasurer by March 1 for the ensuing Club year, or at the time of becoming a member, and paid again on the normal due date. If authorized by the Board, member dues paid during the final three (3) months of the preceding year may be credited as full payment for the ensuing Club year.

Section 2: At any time, Club sponsored fundraisers may augment annual Club dues, provided that the funds raised are devoted to Club sponsored programs to enhance membership, improve communications with Club members and their sponsoring county Democratic Executive Committee (DEC), and informing the community at large regarding Democratic Party policies and programs only. Annually, funds derived from Club dues and other income, not to exceed an aggregate of $500.00 in any one year, may be contributed to Democratic Party candidates. Such contributions shall be reported individually to their county DEC in a timely manner, not to exceed 45 days from the date of any such contribution.

Section : Annual Party Contribution: In January of each year, the Club shall pay an annual contribution, based on membership as of December 31 of the preceding year, to the Democratic Executive Committee based on the following calculation:

0-50  -$25,   51-100 -$50,   101-300 – $75,    301-500 – $100,

501-750 – $150,       751- 1,000 – $250,       1,001 plus – $500

Eighty percent (80%) of the contribution shall remain with the Democratic Executive Committee and twenty percent (20%) of the contribution shall be remitted to the Florida Democratic Party by the county Democratic Executive Committee no later than April 1 of each year of the Club’s existence. The failure of the county Democratic Executive Committee to remit the Annual Party Contribution for a certified Club shall be grounds for removing the Clubs charter by action of the State Central Committee only.

Section 4: At the time of the Clubs’ Charter Recertification in July of each odd numbered year when the Club applies to the county Certification Committee for a Certificate of Compliance, the Club shall submit its latest bank statement(s) to the Certification Committee. The Certification Committee shall be empowered to augment the Clubs Annual Party Contribution by an amount not to exceed twenty percent (20%) of the balance in the Clubs bank accounts and other financial instruments — including checking, certificates of deposit (CD), and savings accounts — to be paid to the county Democratic Executive Committee for the purpose of supporting the election of nominated Democratic Party candidates following the Primary Election only.


Section 1: The officers of the Club shall be a President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and such other officers as may be approved by the membership. Officers shall perform the duties prescribed by these Bylaws.

Section 2:  All terms of office shall be for two (2) years.


Section 1: Duties of the President


  • shall preside at all meetings of the Club and the Board of Directors (“the Board”), of which the President is automatically Chair
  • shall be ex-officio member of all committees except the Nominating Committee; shall appoint all Standing and Special Committees and their respective chairs; shall represent the Club at county, district, and state functions
  • shall give guidance to the respective committee chairs in their work
  • shall perform all duties normally pertaining to the office of President

Section 2: Duties of the Vice President

  • shall render all possible assistance to the President in matters pertaining to the Club
  • shall assume the office in the absence or inability of the President to serve.

Section 3: Duties of the Secretary

  • shall keep an accurate record of all meetings of the Club and the Board
  • shall maintain a current list of members with mailing and email addresses, phone numbers and precinct numbers, as compiled by the Membership Chair, who shall compile, update and submit a membership list on a regular basis
  • shall possess and maintain the official copy of the Club’s Bylaws, with any and all amendments to the Bylaws properly recorded.

The current list of Club members shall be based on a record of dues paying members provided by the Treasurer as of March 1 for the ensuing Club year, or at the time of becoming a member, and paid again on the normal due date established by the Board.

Section 4: Duties of the Treasurer

  • shall receive all monies collected by the Club
  • shall keep an accurate record of receipts and expenditures
  • shall obtain and submit to the Membership Chair the name and other pertinent information of each dues paying member of the Club
  • shall present a statement of all income and expenditures occurring since the previous meeting of the Club at each regular meeting of the Club, and at other times when formally requested by the Board
  • shall submit to the Secretary, to be circulated by email to all members of the Board, the Club’s monthly bank statement, and copies of checks and deposit slips
  • shall pay out funds only as authorized and/or approved by the Board.
  • Records maintained by the Treasurer shall be audited annually by the Finance Committee of the  Board, and if a discrepancy is noted, a report regarding the discrepancy shall be made to the Club’s members.


Section 1: Regular meetings of the Club shall be held monthly, on the third Thursday of the month unless otherwise determined by a majority of a quorum present at a regular meeting of the Club or by the Board.

Section 2: Special meetings may be called by the President or a majority of the Board, with one week’s notice to the members. The purpose of the meeting shall be stated in the notice

Section 3: Twenty percent (20%) of the total membership shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of the business at any regular or special meeting. A majority vote is necessary to carry motions.

Section4: All meetings shall be held in a facility accessible to the impaired, disabled, or handicapped.

Section 5: Communication with members will be by e-mail or by US Mail, for those members without an email account.


Section 1: The Board shall consist of the elected officers and a minimum of four (4) elected Directors, but not more than six (6) elected Directors.

Section 2: The election of Directors shall be held at the March meeting. Directors shall serve for a two-year term.

Section 3: To be eligible for election to the Board, a member must have been a member for at least forty-five (45) days prior to the election and must have attended 2 of the 6 previous regular Club meetings.

Section 4: The duties of the Board shall include planning and organizing each monthly meeting of the Club and making recommendations to the Club’s membership which will facilitate the transaction of Club business during regular and special meetings. No action of the Board shall conflict with or contravene any action previously taken by the Club’s membership at regular or special meetings.

Section 5: Meetings of the Board shall be at least one week prior to the regular monthly meeting of the Club, or at such time as requested by the President or three (3) members of the Board.

Members wishing to be excused from a Board meeting must submit an excuse to the President or, in their absence or unavailability, the Vice President. Absences on account of illness, employment commitments, part-time residency and travel shall be liberally construed as to be excused. Members with two (2) consecutive unexcused absences from regular or special Board meetings may be removed from the Board by a majority vote at a meeting with a quorum of the Board present and voting.

Section 6: Five (5) members of the Board shall constitute a quorum.

Section 7: The Board may take action without a meeting or approve actions taken at a Board meeting at which less than a quorum was present by obtaining the approval of a sufficient number of absent Board members so as to constitute the approval of a majority of a Board membership, expressed in a reply to an email to all Board members describing the action(s) to be taken/approved, which shall be noted in the minutes of the next regularly scheduled Board meeting.


Section 1: Officers shall be elected at the meeting held March of each year with the exception of the charter year.  To be eligible the candidate(s) must have been a paid member of the Club for at least forty-five (45) days prior to the date of their nomination.

Section 2: The President, as chairman, shall appoint a Nominating Committee at the regular meeting in January or such other month as designated by the majority of the Board. This committee shall be composed of three (3) to five (5) members who shall be appointed by the President. This committee shall present a candidate for each elective office at the annual meeting in March. Additional nominations from the floor shall be in order at that time.

Section 3: With the exception of the organizational meeting, there shall be a forty-five (45) day membership requirement prior to a member being permitted to vote or participate in any election of Club officers or Board members.

Section 4: If a vacancy occurs in the office of President, the Vice President shall become President. Other vacancies occurring shall be filled by election at a regular Club meeting from recommendations submitted by the Board and nominations from the floor.

Section 5: Voting for officers and Directors must be by secret ballot. Proxies and absentee voting are prohibited.

Section 6: Any Officer or Director may be removed from office upon the recommendation of a majority of the members of the Board by vote of a majority of members present at a regular meeting of the Club at which a quorum is present. The Secretary shall provide not less than ten (10) days’ written notice to the membership that a motion for the purpose of removal of said member will be considered at the regular or special meeting. The removal may be for causes including, but not limited to, the following: malfeasance, misfeasance, neglect of duty, incompetence, permanent inability to perform official duties, or conviction of a felony involving moral turpitude.


Section 1: The Board is responsible for establishing the Standing Committees of the Club, including but not limited to those specified in Section 2 hereafter. The President shall appoint the Chairman and membership of the Standing Committees promptly after each March annual meeting.

Section 2: The Board of the Club is empowered to establish those Standing Committees necessary to:

  1. Propose an annual budget for adoption by the Board; provide accurate audit records of the Club’s financial activities administered by the Treasurer; and discover and develop means of raising funds to sustain Club programs and coordinate its fundraising activities (the Finance Committee);
  2. Support Democratic candidates for public office (the Campaign Committee);
  3. Establish and maintain Club membership rolls and records; formulate and execute plans for membership recruitment and retention (the Membership Committee);
  4. Communication of the purpose and policies of the Club and of Democratic candidates, organizations, platforms, policies and principles to the Club membership and to the general public (the Communications Committee); and
  5. Planning and execution of agenda for regular meetings and for special events (the Program/Events Committee).


The Club hereby adopts and shall enforce the following anti-discrimination provisions:

  1. No Democratic Loyalty Oath should be used which has the effect of requiring members of the Democratic Party to condone or support discrimination on the grounds of race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, sex, gender identity, religion, reprisal, marital status, familial or parental status, or sexual orientation/identity/identification.
  2. The time and place for all public meetings of the Club should be publicized fully in such a manner as to assure timely notice to all interested persons, and should be open to all members of the Democratic Party grounds of race, color, national origin, age, disability, sex, gender identity, religion, reprisal, marital status, familial or parental status, or sexual orientation/identity/identification.
  3. To fully and adequately inform prospective and current members of a full description of the legal, practical and pertinent procedures for selection of all of the Club’s representatives and officers, the Club should publicize fully, and in such a manner, as to assure notice to all interested Democrats in time to have adequate opportunity to participate.


The bylaws may be amended by a majority vote at a regular meeting pursuant to notification in writing one week prior to the meeting. Bylaws and any changes or amendments are subject to approval by at least two-thirds (2/3) of the Certification Committee (DEC chairman, state committeeman and state 5. committeewoman) and the Florida Democratic Party Committee on Clubs, Organizations, and Caucuses together with copies of the minutes of the meeting at which these amendments were adopted.


The most recent edition of Roberts Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern in in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with these Bylaws, and the Bylaws of the Sarasota County Democratic Executive Committee, the Florida Democratic Party and the National Democratic Party.


Section 1: Charter Recertification: In July of each odd numbered year, the Club shall apply to the County Certification Committee, composed of the Chair of the Democratic Executive Committee, the State Committeeman and the State Committeewoman, for a Certificate of Compliance. Failure to do so shall result in the forfeiture of all rights and privileges of the use of the words Democrat, Democratic or any derivative thereof. The Certification Committee shall be empowered to implement the provisions of Article IV (Dues), Section 4, at its discretion during the recertification process.

Section 2. Dissolution: In the event the Club wishes to dissolve, a resolution stating the date of dissolution and the reasons for the dissolution shall be adopted by a majority vote of the Club after being submitted in writing at the previous meeting. When the Club disbands for any reason, the Club’s assets and funds, after all debts are satisfied, shall become the property of the county Democratic Executive Committee.

Section 3. Grievances: Clubs disputes and grievances may be resolved with the county chairman, state committeeman and state committeewoman of the county Democratic Executive Committee in the county of charter. Should one (1) person hold two (2) of these offices, the vice chairman of the county Democratic Executive Committee shall also be involved in said resolution. Such resolution may be appealed to the county Democratic Committee whose decision shall be final unless appealed to