Heart of LA Democratic Club Constitution and Bylaws
ARTICLE I - NAME
The name of this organization shall be the: Heart of L.A. Democratic Club.
ARTICLE II - PURPOSE
The Heart of L.A. Democratic Club (hereinafter called the Club) shall work to advance the goals of the Democratic Party (hereinafter called the Party), through public policy and political issue analysis, education, fundraising, recruitment, coordination with other Democratic groups, and other activities to benefit the Party.
We formed the Heart of L.A. Democratic Club in recognition of the growing awareness within the Democratic Party that women should be fully and equally represented in local, state, and national politics. Heart of L.A. Democratic Club is open to all Democrats who subscribe to our goals and purposes regardless of their gender identity.
The mission of the Heart of L.A. Democratic Club shall be to make the Democratic Party and its elected officials responsive to, and responsible for, the needs of all people, particularly, though not exclusively, women in our community.
We believe that we have a responsibility to ourselves and to society in general to affirm the role of women in the political arena. We are conscientious activists committed to stimulating advancement of feminist ideals through a combination of social fellowship, community involvement, and political engagement.
We seek to eliminate discrimination based upon gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, race, age, religion and/or disability, whether real or perceived. We promote freedom of choice and human and civil rights; and further economic and social justice for all people. We support public policy to further these goals.
We will encourage and support feminist candidates for public office who are competent and qualified, and who are registered to vote as members of the Democratic Party.
We will engage and empower feminists in the Democratic Party through volunteerism, fundraising and outreach. We believe that this process will sculpt future leaders who are committed to feminist principles, thereby positively influencing our community, state and nation.
ARTICLE III - AFFILIATION
The Club is officially chartered with the Los Angeles County Democratic Party (hereinafter called the LACDP) and shall apply for re-charter every year as required by the LACDP. As a chartered and affiliated club of the LACDP, the Club shall comply with the bylaws of the LACDP and the California Democratic Party (hereinafter called CDP), as they apply to fully chartered affiliates.
ARTICLE IV - MEMBERSHIP REQUIREMENTS
Qualifications: Any individual qualifies for Club membership if:
This organization does not require or use any test of membership or oath of loyalty which has the effect of requiring prospective or current members to acquiesce in, condone or support discrimination on the grounds of race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, physical ability, mental ability, sex, age, religion, ethnic identity, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, medical condition, or economic status.
The membership list of this Club consists of the name, address, phone number, email address, and political and financial data (e.g. – districts, contributions, and dues status) pertaining to those persons who are, or have been members of the club. Only officers of the club shall possess copies of the membership list. Other members of the club may have access to the list with the concurrence of an Executive Board member. This Club shall comply with the reporting requirements of the Democratic Party and/or any other affiliating organization. All persons provided with access to the membership list are to make use of it for authorized purposes only.
ARTICLE V - DUES
Dues for each calendar year shall be set by the Executive Board. The Executive Board shall also have the right to establish a rate of no less than $250 for a lifetime membership.
Membership is effective upon receipt of dues. Annual memberships shall be valid through December 31 of the calendar year during which the member joined and paid dues. Payment of dues by renewal shall occur by January 31 of each calendar year to remain in good standing. Dues paid in the last quarter of the calendar year shall be applied through the end of the following calendar year.
Payment of dues shall not be obligatory to anyone whom it constitutes an economic hardship. After due consideration with approval of the Executive Board, waivers may be available to alleviate financial burdens for members experiencing hardship.
No more than five (5) memberships may be purchased using the same source of funds during any 12-month period.
ARTICLE VI - MEETINGS
Notice of Meetings
ARTICLE VII - CLUB ENDORSEMENTS
Selection of Representatives to California Democratic Party (CDP) Pre-Endorsing Conferences:
1. Club representatives shall be allocated as follows: one representative, resident in the Assembly District and duly registered as a member of the California Democratic Party (CDP), for each full (not a fraction thereof) 20 members in good standing registered to vote in the Assembly District who were listed on the roster submitted to Los Angeles County Democratic Party and to the appropriate Regional Director of the CDP by the appropriate deadline as prescribed by the CDP.
2. For purposes of this Section:
a. Only members in good standing as of the deadline prescribed by the CDP shall be included on the roster;
b. “Member in Good Standing” shall mean a member whose dues are current, or have been waived due to economic hardship;
c. The status of such members shall be certified by the Club’s President, Secretary, or Treasurer; and,
d. The Club’s representatives to any particular pre-endorsing conference be from the roster described above and that the overall list of representatives to all conferences reflect the diversity of the district(s) in question, to the extent possible.
3. Said representatives shall be selected by majority vote of the Executive Board, a quorum being present. The Executive Board shall not select one of its own members unless it first determines that no other viable option is available. If such a determination is made, they shall inform the membership of their decision, and the reasons therefor, at the next General Membership meeting.
4. This Club shall inform its membership of the process for selection as a Representative to the CDP Pre-Endorsing Conferences, via both posting to the club website and email to those members who have provided email addresses for notice purposes. Members interested in being considered for Representative positions shall self-identify to the President or Political Strategy Vice President on or before a deadline set by the Executive Board.
5. In order for a member’s name to be submitted as one of This Club’s representatives to CDP Pre-Endorsing Conferences, the member must submit a signed written declaration of intent to the Selection Committee declaring their intent to support This Club’s endorsed candidates at the Pre-Endorsing Conferences by voting for them thereat.
ARTICLE VIII - EXECUTIVE BOARD
The Executive Board is the governing entity of the Heart of L.A. Democratic Club, comprised of the officers set forth below and duly elected pursuant to the provisions described in this section. Executive Board members shall abide by the provisions of the Commitment Statement as adopted by the Executive Board. The Executive Board shall meet, when called for by the President, for the purpose of formulating plans, policies and overall direction of the club. Quorum for all Executive Board meetings shall be a majority of the Executive Board. A Special meeting of the Executive Board can be called by any two members of the Executive Board.
The Executive Board shall consist of the President, Vice President - Programs, Vice President - Membership, Vice President - Political Strategy, Vice President - Political Organizing, Vice President - Community Outreach, Vice President - Communications, Secretary, and Controller/Treasurer. They shall be elected in January to serve two-year terms which run from February 1 to January 31.
Conflict of Interest: Executive Board members are the leaders and the “face” of the Heart of L.A. Democratic Club within the Democratic party, and vis-à-vis the public. As such, Executive Board members are expected to actively avoid situations in which there is an actual or apparent conflict of interest between themselves and the Club. Thus:
Election of Officers
Duties of Officers
2. Vice President - Programs
3. Vice President - Political Strategy
4. Vice President - Political Organizing
5. Vice President - Membership
6. Vice President - Community Outreach
7. Vice President - Communications
10. At-Large Members
In the event of a vacancy on the Executive Board, the remaining Executive Board members shall fill the vacancy by appointment and majority vote, subject to the qualifications listed at the beginning of this section.
ARTICLE IX - REMOVAL OF MEMBERS
Any member of the Club may request removal of another member from the Club for good cause. Good cause includes, but is not necessarily limited to, behavior that violates the mission of the Club as set forth in these Bylaws, or violates the code of conduct of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party or the California Democratic Party, including each entity’s anti-harassment policies.
Any Executive Board member may request that another Executive Board member be removed from office for good cause. Good cause includes the reasons listed above, as well as the Executive Board member’s failure to fulfill their duties as set forth in these Bylaws.
Requests for removal shall be in writing, setting forth the reasons why the complainant requests removal. The subject of the removal shall be informed of the request by telephone and email with a copy of the complaint, and given no less than five (5) business days to respond, in writing, with the reasons why they should not be removed.
The Executive Board shall make a recommendation regarding removal, with a 70% threshold for recommending removal. Any member for which removal has been recommended has the option to voluntarily resign their membership. Removal shall require a vote of 60% of the general membership at a duly-noticed meeting. Only members in good standing and who have been members for at least 56 continuous days are eligible to vote on a removal motion.
Members who are removed from membership are not eligible to re-join the Club for a period of five years.
ARTICLE X - FINANCES
The Controller/Treasurer shall maintain all financial records of the club, be responsible for bank accounts, ensure FPPC/FEC financial reports are submitted on time, and will provide a monthly financial report at club meetings.
There shall be three (3) signatories of the Executive Board required to set up a bank account. The Executive Board shall decide which bank to use.
Controller/Treasurer shall not issue any check in excess of $250 without prior written approval of the Executive Board and shall not enter into any financial agreement for amounts of more than $250 without written Executive Board approval.
ARTICLE XI - AMENDMENTS
These bylaws may be amended by two-thirds (2/3) vote at a general membership meeting after the proposed amendment has been presented to the membership at a preceding meeting.