Greene County Democratic Committee Bylaws

Greene County Democratic Committee Rules
as adopted on June 27, 2019
by the Greene County Democratic Committee.

Article I: General Provisions

Preamble.
Pursuant to and in consideration of Article II of the New York State Constitution and the Election Law of the State of New York, the Democratic County Committee of the County of Greene, State of New York, does hereby adopt the following rules for the governing of the Democratic Party within the County of Greene, State of New York.

Section 1. Official Organization

The Greene County Democratic Committee (the “County Committee”) is the official organization of the Democratic Party in the County of Greene (the “County”) pursuant to Article  2 of the New York State Election Law (“Election Law”). Except as limited by law or by these  rules, the affairs of the Democratic Party in the County shall be vested in the County Committee.

Section 2. Mission of County Committee

The purpose of these rules is to inspire and encourage the greatest number of Democrats to participate in the affairs of the Democratic Party of the County, to ensure the continuing success of the Democratic Party of the County, to provide an orderly and democratic way to carry on the business of the Democratic Party of the County, and to provide the best possible government for the people of the County.

Section 3. The Greene County Democratic Party actively seeks Members of the County Committee who are representative of their constituents with respect to gender identification, sexual preference, race, religion, ethnic background, and age.

Article II: Membership

Section 1. Representative Members

  1. The County Committee shall be constituted by the election in each election district of the County of up to four Representative Members, each of whom shall be an enrolled member of the Democratic Party residing within the town in which the election district he or she represents is located. County Committee Members shall be elected biennially for terms of two years at the Biennial Organizational Meeting in odd-numbered years, each such term beginning at such election and ending at the next such election, unless sooner terminated pursuant to these rules.
  2. The number of authorized Representative Members in each election district shall be computed according to the following formula. The total Democratic vote for Governor in the most recent gubernatorial election shall be divided by the number of election districts in the County to find ‘A’, the average number of votes per election district. If the vote in an election district was less than half of ‘A’, that district shall be authorized to have two Members. If the vote in an election district was equal to or more than half of ‘A’ but less than ‘A’, that district shall be authorized to have three Members. If the vote in an election district was equal to or greater than ‘A’, that district shall be authorized to have four Members. In case the boundaries of such districts have been changed or a new district has been created since the last preceding gubernatorial election, the above formula shall be applied to the Democratic vote cast for Assembly member. In case the boundaries of such districts have been changed or a new district has been created since the last Assembly election, the same formula shall be applied to the Democratic Party enrollment in the last general election. In case the boundaries of such districts have been changed or a new district has been created since the last general election, the same formula shall be applied to the Democratic Party enrollment at the time of the change in boundaries and/or creation of a new district.

Section 2. Responsibilities of County Committee Representative Members

The responsibilities of a Representative Member of the County Committee include, but are not limited to, the following: attend County Committee meetings; serve on a subcommittee at the discretion of the Executive Committee; carry designating petitions and campaign for candidates in general and special elections; and help organize Democrats in the Member’s town of residence, including registering voters, finding and training volunteers, raising funds, recruiting candidates, and supporting those candidates’ campaigns for office.

Section 3. Ex-Officio Members

Democratic public office holders of elected County, town, and village public offices shall be Ex-Officio Members of the County Committee but shall have no vote unless they are also duly elected or appointed County Committee Members.

Section 4. Associate Members

The County Committee may appoint up to two Associate Members for each election district and will designate primary and secondary positions thereof (all at the recommendation of the Town Committee of the town in which such election district is located). The Associate Members must be enrolled Democrats residing within the town that they will represent. They shall have all the rights of Representative Committee Members and will be considered Committee Members, except for the right to vote on the County Committee. However, should a Representative Committee Member be absent, and an Associate Member from his/her town be present, an Associate Member shall then be allowed to vote with the Associate Members from the town determining which Associate Member shall vote.

Section 5. Filling of Vacancies

  1. In case of death, declination, enrollment in another party or other cessation of enrollment as a Democrat, disqualifying change of residence, removal from office or resignation from office, or the failure to nominate or elect a Representative Member, the vacancy thereby created on the County Committee shall be filled by the County Committee in accordance with the written recommendation of the Town Committee of the town in which the vacancy exists, provided that such Town Committee acts by the next County Committee meeting after the seat becomes vacant. After sixty days, the County Committee may, after providing ten days written notice to the Town Committee, elect to fill the vacancy with an enrolled member of the Democratic Party from the applicable town. Members appointed to fill vacancies shall serve for the remainder of the replaced Member’s term.
  2. In the event that the boundaries of election districts change or a new district is created within an existing district, the County Committee Representative Members from that town shall by majority vote determine which members shall represent which new or reconfigured districts and which districts shall have vacancies filled by County Committee appointments as described above.

Section 6. Removal or Resignation from Office

  1. A County Committee Representative Member may be removed from office for: disloyalty to the party or corruption in office according to law after a written notice has been given and a hearing upon written charges has been held. This hearing shall be held, either by the County Committee, or by a special temporary subcommittee thereof formed for such purpose which shall report its findings to the full County Committee. After the consideration of such findings, the Committee Member of the County Committee will be removed, upon two-thirds vote of the County Committee.
  2. A County Committee Representative Member may resign by an unconditional written resignation transmitted both to the County Chair and to applicable Town Chair by any means including email. A resignation will be deemed effective upon receipt and acceptance by the County Chair unless a later date is specified in the resignation, not to exceed thirty days from the date of its transmittal; provided, however, that the resignation of a Representative Member elected in the primary election cannot be accepted until after election of the officers at the biennial organizational meeting held within twenty days after such primary election.

Section 7. Code of Ethics
Members and Officers shall adhere to the Code of Ethics that is contained in Article X of these rules, and it shall govern the standard of conduct of Members.

Article III: Meetings

Section 1. Biennial Organizational Meeting

Within twenty days of the party primary election in which its Representative Members are elected, the County Committee shall hold the Biennial Organizational Meeting at which Officers shall be elected to two-year terms ending at the next Biennial Organizational Meeting. Each GCDC member shall be given ten days written notice of the purpose, date, time and location of said meeting, and including the names of any member placed in nomination for the Officers positions. Incumbent Officers who wish to nominate themselves for reelection, and other committee members who wish to place themselves in nomination for these offices, shall provide the Secretary with a Statement of Intent to that effect at least fifteen days prior to the meeting date. Nominees may also provide 1-page statements of qualification, which shall be distributed by the Secretary to committee members as part of the ten-day notice. Before conducting any other substantive business, the County Committee shall elect by a simple majority a Temporary Chair to preside over the meeting until the election of the new County Chair, after which the new County Chair shall preside. It shall also elect by a simple majority a Temporary Secretary to record the minutes of the meeting until the election of a new County Secretary, after which the new County Secretary shall record the minutes. Each nominated and seconded candidate for office shall be given an equal period of time, of not more than three minutes, to make a statement, followed by a question and answer period of not more than five minutes, provided that there are sufficient questions. The Temporary Chair shall appoint a teller of all votes. Within three days after each biennial organizational meeting, the County Secretary shall file with both the State and County Boards of Elections a certificate stating the names and mailing addresses of the new Officers, as well as notify all County Committee Members of the new Officers.

Section 2. Biennial Organizational Meeting Order of Business

Upon the meeting for the purpose of organizing, as noted in Article III Section 1, the following shall be the order of business:

  1. Election of Temporary Chair and Temporary Secretary
  2. Meeting called to order by the Temporary Chair
  3. Pledge of allegiance to the flag
  4. Calling of the roll
  5. Reading of the minutes
  6. Treasurer’s report
  7. Communications
  8. Standing Subcommittees and Other Subcommittees reports
  9. Adoption of rules
  10. Election of Officers
  11. Filling of vacancies
  12. Appointment of Subcommittees and chairs thereof
  13. Unfinished business
  14. New business
  15. Adjournment

Section 3. Regular Meetings

At the Annual Operating Meeting of each year, always held on the fourth Thursday in the month of January, a schedule of meetings shall be adopted by a vote of a simple majority of the County Committee. The schedule may be modified or adjusted in the same manner. The Secretary shall distribute by first-class mail, or via email, to each Officer, State Committee Member, County Committee Representative Member, Associate Member and Ex-Officio Member the dates and times and locations of the regular County Committee meetings for that year. These regular meetings shall be held at least six times per year, beginning each year with an annual operating meeting in January (see Section 5) and including in odd-numbered years a biennial organizational meeting within twenty days after the party primary election (see Section 1). Any change in the date or time of a regular meeting must be communicated to each County Committee Member by first-class mail sent at least five days prior to the new date of the meeting. Any enrolled Democrat who is not a County Committee Member may attend via invitation by the Executive Committee only.

Section 4. Regular Meeting Order of Business

Upon the meeting of the County Committee, as noted in Article III Section 3, the following shall be the order of business:

1. Meeting called to order by the Chair

2. Pledge of allegiance to the flag

3. Calling of the roll

4. Reading of the minutes, unless voted to be dispensed with

5. Executive Committee report

6. Treasurer’s report

7. Other reports:

  1. State Committee members’ report following its semiannual regular meetings

and any other meetings;

  1. Democratic Rural Conference representative’s report following its annual

      conference and any other meetings

8. Communications

9. Unfinished business

10. New business

11. Adjournment

Section 5. Annual Operating Meeting

Every January, the County Committee shall hold an annual operating meeting at which it

shall:

  1. Receive presentations from each subcommittee chair on the operations of such

subcommittees during the previous year, including the goals and plans for the coming year. These goals for the coming year within the Strategic Plan will have been identified by the Chair of each subcommittee with input from the Executive Committee at Executive Committee meetings.

  • The Vice Chair will be responsible for documenting the yearly Strategic Plan with
    input from the Executive Committee. The proposed Strategic Plan for the upcoming year will be distributed to the GCDC members at least 15 days prior to the Annual Operating Meeting in January, and approved by majority vote of the GCDC Members present at the Annual Operating meeting.
  • If objections to the Strategic Plan are raised at this meeting, and the Strategic Plan is not approved by the majority of members present, changes to the Strategic Plan would be discussed, written into the Strategic Plan by the Vice Chair, and new wording approved by the majority of the members present. The Vice Chair would then modify the Strategic Plan document and distribute to the Committee Members via email.
  1. Receive a written accounting prepared by the Treasurer of the County Committee of the Committee’s income and expenses for the past calendar year.
  2. Receive a written accounting prepared by the Treasurer of the County Committee regarding the proposed Budget for the upcoming year. The proposed Budget for the upcoming year will be distributed at least 15 days prior to the Annual Operating Meeting in January, and approved by majority vote of the County Committee Members present at this meeting.
  3. At the Annual Operating Meeting of each year a schedule of meetings shall be adopted by a vote of a simple majority of the County Committee.
  4. The GCDC Strategic Plan and Annual Operating Budget, approved by the County Committee at the Annual Operating Meeting, and any revisions thereof, shall be made available by the County Secretary upon request from an Officer or County Committee Member by internet (email or GCDC Google Suite).

Section 6. Special Meetings

  1. A special meeting of the Committee must be called upon the written request of twenty-five members, or by the County Chair, County Vice Chair, or County 2nd Vice Chair, or in the absence or inability to act by any of them, by the County Secretary. The date, time, location and agenda of any special meeting must be communicated by the County Secretary to each County Committee Member by first-class mail sent at least five days prior to the meeting.
  2. Notwithstanding Paragraph a hereof, the membership of the County Committee shall be given ten days written notice before the scheduling of a special meeting to elect persons to fill the offices of the State Committeeman and State Committeewoman, or to recommend a person to be appointed to fill the office of Democratic County Commissioner of Elections. Each County Committee member shall be given ten days written notice of the purpose, date, time and location of said meeting, and including the names of any member placed in nomination for the State Committee Member or Democratic County Commissioner of Elections positions. Incumbent Officers who wish to nominate themselves for reelection, and other committee members who wish to place themselves in nomination for these offices, shall provide the Secretary with a Statement of Intent to that effect at least fifteen days prior to the meeting date. Nominees may also provide 1-page statements of qualification, which shall be distributed by the Secretary to committee members as part of the ten-day notice. Election of State Committee Members shall take place between the State Committee Biennial Organizational meeting, held in the fall, and the first State Committee meeting in the following year, so that State Committee Members have sufficient tenure on the State Committee prior to the subsequent State Committee Organizational Meetings where State Committee Officers and DNC Members are elected. In the event of such special meeting, each member shall be given ten days written notice of the State Committee Member candidates, purpose, date, time and location of said meeting.

Section 7. Executive Session

Attendance at the County Committee meeting in executive session shall be limited to its Officers, State Committee Members, Town Chairs, Subcommittee Chairs, and Ex-Officio Members. The County Committee shall meet in executive session for the portion of any meeting during which it is considering Unfinished business and New business. The County Committee may meet in executive session for any other portion of any meeting during which it is considering any other matter, upon approval by majority vote of a proper motion to meet in executive session.

Section 8. Quorum

A quorum of the County Committee shall consist of twenty-five voting members. If less than a quorum is present at a regular or special meeting, all business or matters requiring a vote shall be adjourned until the next meeting.

Section 9. No Proxy Voting

There shall be no proxy voting.

Article IV: Elected Officers and Party Leaders

Section 1. Officers

The Officers of the County Committee shall consist of a County Chair, County First Vice Chair, County Second Vice Chair, County Secretary, and County Treasurer, who shall be elected for two-year terms by the County Committee at each Biennial Organizational Meeting in the manner specified in Article III, Section 1. The Executive Committee may create such other offices as it may deem advisable, and elect officers thereto, with approval by the majority vote of the County Committee. Officers of the County Committee shall be enrolled members of the Democratic Party, but need not be members of the County Committee.

Section 2. Duties

The duties of the Officers shall include, but not be limited to, the following:

  1. The County Chair, in addition to the duties conferred by law, shall exercise any other powers and duties assigned by the County Committee. The County Chair presides at all meetings and possesses the general powers of the presiding officer. The County Chair will also be an ex-officio member of all subcommittees, provide guidance on fundraising and events and financial decisions of the party, support campaigns including assistance with identifying volunteers and staff, interface with NYS Democratic Committee, Democratic Rural Conference, and other county chairs in regional campaign districts, and be the spokesperson for the party in media or appoint spokespeople as appropriate.
  2. It shall be the duty of the County First Vice Chair to discharge the following responsibilities: assist the County Chair with all duties, preside over meetings in the absence of the County Chair, serve as Chair of a Subcommittee or act as a District Coordinator, coordinate with campaigns and County/Town Committees outside Greene County, liaison with State and Congressional campaigns for activities within Greene County, and establish relationships with activist groups in the County or those which have a presence in the County.
  3. It shall be the duty of the County Second Vice Chair to discharge the following responsibilities: assist the County Chair and County First Vice Chair with all duties, preside over meetings in the absence of the County Chair and County First Vice Chair, manage volunteers to coordinate volunteer calendar and activities notifications, liaison with Greene County campaigns, and serve as Chair of a Standing Subcommittee or District Coordinator.
  4. The County Secretary shall keep a full and accurate account of all proceedings of the County Committee and prepare minutes that will be made available upon request from an Officer or County Committee Member. The County Secretary shall file and preserve all written records of the County Committee, and be responsible for the preparation of all reports required by law, except those which have to do with finances, or which by law are required to be filed by some other Officer. The County Secretary shall attend to the preparation and distribution of all notices required by these rules, oversee votes at meetings, work with the Greene County Board of Elections on all communications, calendar and petitions, and perform such other duties as the County Committee or the County Chair may require. The County Secretary shall give all new County Committee Members an orientation package promptly after their election or appointment, which shall include, but not be limited to, a copy of these rules and the document ‘GCDC Committee Person Responsibilities’, and the current GCDC Strategic Plan. The County Secretary shall communicate via email to the Chair of the Communications Committee the names and addresses, including email, of the new County Committee Members for the purposes of updating the county email list.
  5. The County Treasurer shall be the chair of the Finance subcommittee and the chief financial officer of the County Committee and shall receive, hold in trust and disburse all funds of the County Committee according to the following procedures and any additional procedures established by the County Committee or the finance subcommittee. All checks drawn on, or withdrawals made from, accounts of the County Committee shall require two signatures; the County Treasurer, County Chair and County Vice Chair shall be the authorized signers. All withdrawals are to be made on the signatures of the County Chair and County Treasurer for any amount up to $250.00; expenditures of more than $250.00 require the approval of the County Committee or the Executive Committee. The County Treasurer shall fill all financial reports and statements required by law and perform such other duties as the County Committee or the County Chair may require.

Section 3. Other Party Leaders

The County Committee shall elect a State Committeeman and State Committeewoman for two-year terms at a Special Meeting in the manner specified in Article III, Section 6, paragraph b. It shall be the duty of the State Committeeman and State Committeewoman to endeavor to remain abreast of issues and organizational activities under consideration by the State Committee, and apprise County Committee members of such in a timely manner to encourage local deliberation. The State Committeeman and Committeewoman shall serve as liaison on behalf of the county committee for all business conducted at State Committee meetings, and shall coordinate the designation, by majority vote of the County Committee, of a liaison to the State Committee Delegate Selection Committee in Presidential election years.

At the County Committee meeting immediately following the spring and fall meetings of the State Committee, and any other meetings of the State Committee, the State Committee members shall report to the County Committee a summary of the substantive proceedings of the State Committee meeting, and, when available from the State Committee, shall make available to County Committee members the final minutes of those meetings.

Section 4. Filling of Vacancies

  1. With regard to Officers other than the County Chair, and with regard to State Committee Members, the Executive Committee shall temporarily fill vacancies by a majority vote within thirty days of the offices becoming vacant. The full County Committee at its next meeting shall then elect new Officers or State Committee Members by a majority vote to fill such vacancies until the next biennial organizational meeting; it shall also at that meeting fill by a majority vote any vacancies created by the elevation of existing Officers.
  2. With regard to the office of County Chair, the County Vice Chair shall serve as Acting County Chair until the next meeting of the County Committee, to be held within thirty days of the office of County Chair becoming vacant. At that meeting, the County Committee shall elect a new County Chair by a majority vote to serve until the next biennial organizational meeting; it shall also at that meeting fill by a majority vote any vacancies created by the elevation of existing officers.

Section 5. Removal from Office

An Officer may be removed from office only after a written notice has been given and a hearing upon written charges has been held. A group of at least twenty-five County Committee Members may originate such written notice. The written notice shall contain alleged charges and designate a date, time and location for a special County Committee meeting and be delivered to the County Secretary and all Officers at least four weeks prior to the proposed meeting. The County Secretary shall call the meeting for the date, time and location designated in the notice. Notwithstanding the provisions of Article III, Section 6, the date, time and location and a copy of the written notice must be sent by the County Secretary to each County Committee Member by first-class mail sent at least two weeks prior to the meeting. The Members of the County Committee who are present at such meeting shall elect by simple majority a Temporary Chair for the meeting. The Temporary Chair shall appoint a teller of votes for the meeting. The hearing shall be held at that meeting. After the hearing, the Officer of the County Committee will be removed, upon two-thirds vote of the County Committee. Nothing herein contained precludes the applicability of Article X in a case to which it applies according to its terms.

Article V: Executive Committee

Section 1. Purpose and Powers

The purpose of the Executive Committee shall be to provide coordination and leadership to the work of the County Committee and to act in the place of the County Committee between County Committee meetings. The Executive Committee shall have all the powers of the County Committee, except the power to approve revisions to these rules which remains with the County Committee Members, or as specifically provided for in the rules. Duties of the Executive Committee include, but are not limited to, the appointment of the membership of all subcommittees, and the designation of the chairs thereof, work in conjunction with Democratic elected officials to facilitate more effective governance and communication among Democratic elected officials, as well as designating a Town Caucus Chair according to law (Article VIII, Section 4, Paragraph a). The County Committee may by majority vote, of those present at a general committee meeting, override any action taken by the Executive Committee.

Section 2. Membership, Voting and Officers

  1. The Executive Committee shall consist of all the Officers of the County Committee, the Town Chair or a delegate from each town designated by the respective Town Chair, the members of the State Committee from the County , and the Chair of any subcommittee. Ex-Officio Members of the County Committee shall be ex-officio members of the Executive Committee.
  2. Each member of the Executive Committee except ex-officio members shall have voting privileges and each member shall have one vote. There shall be no proxies.
  3. The Officers of the County Committee shall be the officers of the Executive Committee.

Section 3. Regular Meetings

Before the Annual Operating Meeting of each year, always held on the fourth Thursday in the month of January, the Executive Committee shall determine the dates, times and locations of the regular Executive Committee meetings for that year, and include this information in the schedule of meetings. The schedule of meetings shall be adopted by a vote of a simple majority of the County Committee at the Annual Operating Meeting. The County Secretary will distribute by mail and/or email to each County Committee Member the schedule of meetings, including the regular Executive Committee meetings for that year. There shall be a minimum of four Executive Committee meetings annually. The County Chair may make any change in the date or time or location of a regular meeting, or the addition of a special meeting as provided in Section 4 of this Article. Any changes must be communicated by the County Secretary to each County Committee Member by mail sent at least one week prior to the new date of the meeting. Any member of the County Committee may attend meetings of the Executive Committee but will not have voting privileges. A majority of the actual voting membership of the Executive Committee will constitute a quorum. The record of actions taken at meetings of the Executive Committee shall be reported at the next meeting of the County Committee.

Section 4. Special Meetings

The County Chair at his or her discretion may call a special meeting of the Executive Committee for any purpose including for the designating of candidates for public office when a majority of the membership of the Executive Committee determines that it would be impractical to notify or timely to assemble the full County Committee. Any member of the Executive Committee may request the County Chair to call a special meeting for any proper purposes. If the County Chair fails or refuses to call a special meeting of the Executive Committee at such request, any ten (10) Executive Committee members may do so, provided that proper notice is given by the Secretary to the members of the Executive Committee via email.

Article VI: Subcommittees

Section 1. Purpose

The purpose of the subcommittees is to manage and carry out the day-to-day work of the County Committee. The duty of each subcommittee shall be to accomplish the goals provided by the GCDC Strategic Plan. Each subcommittee may fulfill its goals as it sees fit, subject to review by the Executive Committee and the County Committee at Executive Committee meetings, or regular County Committee meetings. The terms of all subcommittee members and chairs will expire at the Biennial Organizational Meeting.

Section 2. Subcommittee Appointments and Role of the Executive Committee

The Executive Committee shall appoint all subcommittee members, and shall designate the subcommittee Chairs, except the Chair of the Finance subcommittee. The Executive Committee will appoint Chairs and members for all subcommittees at the expiration of their terms at the biennial organizing meeting (see Article III, Section 2). Subcommittee members and Chairs, except the Chair of the Finance subcommittee, shall serve at the pleasure of the Executive Committee, which may remove and/or replace subcommittee members and Chairs, except the chair of the Finance subcommittee, at any time. Eligibility for appointment to any subcommittee shall be limited to Representative Members of the County Committee.

Section 3. Subcommittee Designations, Membership and Responsibilities

The subcommittees shall be as follows:

  1. The Finance subcommittee, which shall consist of such number of members as may be thought appropriate, one of whom shall be the County Treasurer who shall be the chair of the Finance subcommittee. The subcommittee shall establish procedures for disbursement of funds subject to the approval of the County Committee, prepare an annual budget and an annual financial report and present these to the County Committee, maintain a database of potential campaign treasurers, be responsible for training Town Treasurers, and shall perform such other functions as are delegated to it by the Executive Committee or the County Committee.
  2. The Events and Fundraising subcommittee, which shall consist of such number of members as may be thought appropriate. The subcommittee shall plan and conduct all fund­raising and donor-development activities, work with Communications Committee to maintain fundraising events calendar on the County Committee website and develop publicity and marketing plans for each fundraising activity. Coordinate at a minimum three fundraising events per year, coordinate community honorees program, develop alternative fundraising avenues. Fundraising goals and activity levels will be determined by the annual budget. and shall perform such other functions as are delegated to it by the Executive Committee or the County Committee.
  3. The Communications subcommittee, which shall consist of such number of members as may be thought appropriate. The subcommittee shall manage the County Committee’s communications with the public , coordinate and maintain information on GCDC website, social media, email blasts and other online activities, maintain email database, advise and work with Town Committees and subcommittees with respect to their communications needs, work in conjunction with candidate campaigns to coordinate communication to the GCDC and the public, and shall perform such other functions as are delegated to it by the Executive Committee or the County Committee.
  4. The Information Technology subcommittee, which shall consist of such number of members as may be thought appropriate. The subcommittee shall be responsible for purchasing technology equipment and software, for deploying and maintaining technology equipment and software, for maintaining and updating the voter, donor and fundraising databases, for providing support for communications such as mailing lists, and campaigns, such as walk lists, and shall perform such other functions as are delegated to it by the Executive Committee or the County Committee.
  5. The Platform and Issues subcommittee, which shall consist of such number of members as may be thought appropriate. The subcommittee, in coordination with elected Democrats, Town Committee Chairs, GCDC Young Democrats, activist organizations, and the Communications subcommittee, shall be responsible for guiding County Committee deliberation on issues and developing county-wide platforms, monitoring the activities of village, town and county governments, tracking issues within the villages, towns and the county, and developing all pertinent information for the purpose of platform and issue development, and shall perform such other functions as are delegated to it by the Executive Committee or the County Committee.
  6. The Party Building subcommittee, which shall consist of such number of members as may be thought appropriate. The subcommittee, in coordination with elected Democrats, Town Committee Chairs, GCDC Young Democrats, the Events & Fundraising subcommittee, and the Communications subcommittee, shall be responsible for building the GCDC via district social events, plan and conduct outreach efforts, and other activities to bring in new members and build relationships with the community, develop the volunteer database, and shall perform such other functions as are delegated to it by the Executive Committee or the County Committee.
  7. The Candidates and Campaigns subcommittee, which shall consist of such number of members as may be thought appropriate. The subcommittee, in coordination with elected Democrats, Town Committee Chairs, GCDC Young Democrats, and the Communications subcommittee, shall be responsible for finding suitable candidates for local races, screen candidates for approval by the County Committee, provide information and logistical support to candidates for village, town and county elective office, and assist in their campaigns within the county; this group shall also maintain a County Committee liaison with the county board of elections, provide advice on requirements of the Election Law, and prepare petitions for Democratic candidates; which shall maintain communications with the state and national Democratic Parties, develop and support candidates for state and federal office in concert with the state and national parties, and shall perform such other functions as are delegated to it by the Executive Committee or the County Committee. The two county representatives to the State Democratic Committee shall be ex-officio members of this committee.
  8. The Coordination subcommittee, which shall consist of three members. The subcommittee shall coordinate the various activities of the County Committee in the several geographical areas of the County, namely: Northern District 1, consisting of the Towns of Cairo, Coxsackie, Durham, Greenville and New Baltimore; Mountaintop District 2, consisting of the Towns of Ashland, Halcott, Hunter, Jewett, Lexington, Prattsville and Windham; and, Main Hubs District 3, consisting of the Towns of Athens and Catskill; each member performing such coordination in a single district, as assigned , and shall perform such other functions as are delegated to it by the Executive Committee or the County Committee.
  9. The Bylaws subcommittee, which shall consist of the Executive Committee and such number of members as may be thought appropriate. The subcommittee shall review the GCDC Rules for possible updates, and make changes as needed, which then must be approved by majority vote of the County Committee Members present at a Regular or Special Meeting.

Section 4. Meetings

Each standing subcommittee shall meet at the call of its Chair. All subcommittee members shall receive notice of such meetings at least one week prior to the meeting. Standing subcommittees shall act according to the majority vote of those members in attendance. No quorum is necessary, provided that actual notice of the meeting has been given to all members at least one week in advance of the meeting. The chair of each standing subcommittee shall be responsible for maintaining a roster of its members.

Section 5. Minutes

Each standing subcommittee shall designate its own secretary, who shall be responsible for recording the minutes of meetings, and providing them in a timely manner to the County Secretary, who shall make them available by internet (email or GCDC Google Suite) to the County Committee Members.

Section 6. Other Subcommittees

Other temporary subcommittees may be formed from time to time at the discretion of the Executive Committee. In forming such a subcommittee, the Executive Committee shall specify its purposes, fix its duration, appoint its membership and designate its chair , all of whom shall serve at the pleasure of the Executive Committee and may be removed and replaced at any time, and prescribe its procedures including its meetings and the recordation of minutes of its meetings. Eligibility for appointment to any temporary subcommittee shall be limited to Representative Members of the County Committee.

Article VII: Amendment of the Rules

Section 1. Amendments

Amendments may be made by majority vote of the County Committee Members present at any meeting of the County Committee, provided that a copy of the proposed amendment is sent with the notice of the meeting at least five days before the meeting at which the amendment will be proposed.

Section 2. Emergency Amendments

Emergency amendments may be made at a regularly called meeting without prior notice of said amendment, only if the vote for such emergency amendment is unanimous. A special meeting may also be called per Article III, Section 6, paragraph a.

Section 3. Revisions

Revisions of the entire document can be instigated by the Bylaws Committee and then approved by majority vote of the County Committee Members present at any meeting of the County Committee, provided that a copy of the proposed amendment is sent with the notice of the meeting at least five days before the meeting at which the amendment will be proposed.

Article VIII: Town Committee Organization

Section 1. Town Committees and Rules

  1. In each town of the County, there shall be a Town Committee, which shall consist of the Representative Members of the County Committee elected or appointed to represent election districts within such town. A Town Committee may have such subcommittees as it may see fit to establish by its rules.
  2. Each Town Committee may adopt rules for its guidance and governance consistent with law and with these rules and any other requirements of the County Committee, and shall provide a copy to the County Committee and the County Board of Elections, and to the Village Clerk of any village contained in the town. In the absence of adopted Town Committee rules, the County Committee rules shall apply.

Section 2. Meetings

  1. Prior to the County Committee biennial organizational meeting provided for by Article III, Sections 1 and 2, the Town Committee in each town shall hold an organizational meeting for the election of Officers by majority vote, and for any other proper purposes; and shall promptly notify the County Secretary of the results of such election. Within three days after such meeting, the Town Committee shall file with the County Board of Elections a certificate stating the names and post office addresses of its said Officers, and communicate to the Chair of the Communications Committee the names, post office and email addresses of its said Officers for the purpose of updating the County Committee website and email address database.
  2. Town Committees should have regular meetings at least two times a year. Notices of the date, time and location of such meetings shall be sent ten days prior to any meeting by the Town Secretary.

Section 3. Officers; Duties

The Officers of a Town Committee shall consist of, a Town Chair, a Town Secretary, a Town Treasurer, and such other Officers as may be provided for by its rules, having the following duties:

  1. The Town Chair shall perform all duties imposed by law and serve as and possess the powers of the presiding officer of the Town Committee, including the power to appoint the chair and membership of all subcommittees except a subcommittee constituting a Village Committee; together with performing such other duties as may be prescribed by Town Committee rules.
  2. The Town Secretary shall keep a full and accurate account of all proceedings of the Town Committee and prepare and retain minutes of its meetings, and provide all required notices to the membership; together with performing such other duties as may be prescribed by Town Committee rules.
  3. The Town Treasurer shall manage the finances of the Town Committee; together with performing such other duties as may be prescribed by Town Committee rules.
  4. Other Officers shall perform such duties as may be prescribed by Town Committee rules.

Section 4. Party Caucuses and Primaries

  1. In all towns in the County, nominations of candidates for Town Offices shall be made at a party Caucus noticed and conducted according to law. The Town Chair shall call a Caucus and set the date for the Caucus. In the event that the office of Town Chair is vacant, or if within forty days prior to the deadline for filing nominations made at a Town or Village Caucus or by a party committee, per the NY State Board of Elections political calendar, no date therefor has been set, the Executive Committee shall designate some enrolled Democrat resident in the town to call a party Caucus and set the date for the party caucus.
  2. Notice for each party caucus shall be given by posting such notice in the public areas at the offices of the Town Clerk and the County Board of Elections, and by filing a copy of such notice with the Town Clerk and the County Board of Elections at least ten days prior to the Caucus date, beginning with the first day to hold a Caucus listed in the NY State Board of Elections Political Calendar. Notice shall also be given either by newspaper publication (in the legal notices section) at least 7 days, but no more than 14 days prior to the caucus date, or by posting announcements in ten public places in the town at least ten days prior to the caucus date. Each notice shall specify the date, time, place and purpose of the caucus.
  3. A Caucus is open to enrolled Democrats in that town and to any guests invited by the Town Democratic Committee, but only enrolled Democrats in that town and that appear on the corresponding list provided by the County Board of Elections have a vote. Those Democrats present at the Caucus shall elect a Caucus Chair and a Caucus Secretary and also, if desired, Caucus Tellers. Each Caucus Officer shall take the constitutional oath of office provided by the County Board of Elections before acting. Caucus participants may choose not to nominate a candidate for a particular opening. All appropriate forms required by the County Board of Elections, as well as the Caucus minutes signed by the Caucus Chair and Caucus Secretary, must be filed with the County Board of Elections by the deadline stated in the NY State Board of Elections Political Calendar. For Village Elections this information is filed with the Village Clerk.
  4. Notwithstanding Paragraph a hereof, in any town in the County where the Town Committee has duly adopted by a supermajority vote a rule providing that nominations of candidates for town offices shall be made at the primary election, nominations of candidates for town offices shall be made at the primary election according to law.
  5. In all villages in the County, nominations of candidates for village offices shall be made at a party caucus noticed and conducted according to law. The Executive Committee shall designate some enrolled Democrat resident in the village to be the Village Election Chair.

Article IX: Miscellaneous

Section 1. Indemnification

The County Committee shall indemnify and hold harmless its Officers and Members from and against any and all liability, cost, damage, claim, or expense incurred in carrying out his or her responsibilities as an Officer or Member of the County Committee, except where such liability, cost, damage, claim, or expense arises from or is caused by, in whole or in part, the gross negligence or willful misconduct of said Officer or Member.

Section 2. Use of Email for Notices

All notices of meetings and transmission of minutes and other material may be made by email, provided that copies are mailed to those Members of the County Committee not having email capability. Any Member may waive notice by first-class mail by advising the County Secretary that he or she is willing to have all notices sent by email and by providing the proper email address.

Section 3. Fiscal Year

The fiscal year of the County Committee shall be the calendar year.

Article X: Code of Ethics

Introduction. The Greene County Democratic Committee adopts the following Code of Ethics, based on the Model Code of Ethics passed by the Executive Committee of the New York State Democratic Party. For purposes of this Code, the term, “Officer of the County Committee”, means the County Chair, the County Vice Chair, the County Second Vice Chair, the County Secretary, the County Treasurer, any other Officer as may be created by the Executive Committee and approved by majority vote of the County Committee, and any Town Chair; and the term, “Party Leader”, means the County Chair, any Town Chair, and State Committeeman & State Committeewoman.

Section 1. Conflict of Interest

An Officer of the County Committee or a firm or corporation controlled by an Officer, shall not receive any compensation for services relating to matters before a legislative body or a State or local agency in connection with the purchase, sale or lease of goods, property and services, licensing, rate-making, and the adoption or repeal of rules and regulations having the force of law; provided, however, that an Officer may render services in a matter before a legislative body or agency if the identity of the Officer and the source of compensation is disclosed to the Ethics Commission in writing; the compensation must not be contingent on the success of any proceeding and the proceeding must be subject to public notice and competitive bidding where applicable. An officer cannot sell or contract to provide any goods or services with a value greater than $25.00 to any State or local agency, unless such goods or services are provided after public notice and competitive bidding provided, however, that an Officer may sell or contract to provide goods or services to any State or local agency, if the Officer makes full disclosure of the same to the Ethics Commission prior thereto. An Officer cannot accept directly or indirectly for personal gain anything of value greater than $100.00 from any entity having a financial interest in the outcome of any pending County Committee decision and an Officer cannot use his or her position to obtain any benefits or privileges not generally available to members of the public.

Section 2. Dual Office Holding

No Party Leader while in office shall simultaneously serve as Judge of any court of record or any court not of record, Attorney General, Assistant Attorney General, District Attorney, or Assistant District Attorney, or serve as Election Commissioner.

Section 3. County Committee Ethics Commission

The Executive Committee shall appoint an Ethics Commission of five enrolled Democrats; no Party Leader and no more than one voting Member of the Executive Committee shall serve as a member of the Commission. The Ethics Commission shall constitute an additional standing subcommittee within the meaning of Article VI. The Executive Committee will designate a Commission Chair, and will act promptly to fill any vacancies. Members may be removed from the Commission by the Executive Committee for neglect, misconduct or violation of this Code, after written notice and opportunity to reply.

Section 4. Complaints

The Ethics Commission may institute a complaint alleging a specific violation of this Code based on credible information derived by the Commission from any source or sources. When a complaint is instituted the Commission will give a copy to the individual complained of (the “Respondent”), who may reply in writing within fifteen days. Within thirty days after the expiration of the fifteen-day period, the Commission may, by majority vote, dismiss the complaint, reprimand the Respondent, or schedule a hearing on the complaint. If the Respondent requests, the Commission must schedule a hearing. The Respondent must be notified of the time, date and location of the hearing fifteen days in advance and a quorum of four Commission members must be present. The hearing will be private unless the Respondent requests otherwise; however, all reprimands or penalties shall be made public. The Commission and the Respondent are entitled to have counsel present at the hearing. Any decision of the Commission by majority vote may be appealed to the County Committee or to the Executive Committee by the Respondent. The Commission shall review the Code of Ethics and may from time to time recommend to the County Committee any changes it considers desirable.

Section 5. Penalties

If a Party Leader or Officer is charged with a criminal offense, the Commission shall hold a hearing to determine whether the offense comes under the scope of the Code of Ethics; if so, the Party Leader or Officer is automatically suspended from party office pending final judgment of the case. A party office automatically becomes vacant if the Party Leader or Officer is convicted of a felony. If the Commission determines that a Party Leader or Officer has violated the Code of Ethics, the Party Leader or Officer may be reprimanded, suspended or removed from party office. A Party Leader or Officer who is removed from office for violation of this Code may not hold party office for five years measured from the later of, the date of removal or the date of expiration of his or her sentence.

Section 6. Certification

When a Party Leader or Officer is elected or appointed, the Ethics Commission shall provide him or her with a copy of the Code of Ethics, unless a copy of these rules has been previously provided by the County Secretary pursuant to Article IV, Section 2, Paragraph c, and any other relevant materials. Within ten days the Party Leader or Officer must file with the Commission a certificate stating that he or she has received the materials, has read them and agrees to abide by them.

Comments are closed.