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Colusa County Democratic Central Committee Bylaws

Colusa County Democratic Central Committee Bylaws Revised & Approved 9-20-18

ARTICLE I. NAME

The official name of the organization is the Colusa County Democratic Central Committee (hereafter referred to as the CCDCC).

ARTICLE II. PURPOSE

Section A. PREAMBLE

The California Elections Code establishes the CCDCC as a legal entity, specifically the official representative of the Democratic Party in Colusa County. That Code goes on to make the CCDCC an intensely and uncompromisingly partisan body. Each of the members of the CCDCC is an official representative of the Democratic Party.

Not only does the Code require the CCDCC and all of its members to further the interests of the Democratic Party, it specifically forbids the CCDCC and all of its members to act in any manner that might further the interests of any other political party.

Section B. PURPOSES

  1. To serve as the official governing body of the Democratic Party in the County of Colusa in cooperation with the State and National Committees;
  2. To conduct the (Democratic) Party campaign in the County of Colusa under the general direction of the State Central Committee;
  3. To build party organization on district, regional, and county levels to register Democrats and turnout Democratic voters;
  4. To encourage the fullest possible participation of all Democratic voters;
  5. To develop party policies and positions and to communicate them to the public and to all office-holders;
  6. To provide a forum for the study and discussion of public issues;
  7. To conduct a public relations program for the Democratic Party throughout Colusa County and to represent the Democratic Party within the county;
  8. To interview, develop, and endorse Democratic candidates for public office;
  9. To nominate a qualified Democrat to fill any vacancy occurring in a party nominee position within this county;
  10. To charter Democratic organizations within Colusa County;
  11. To ensure, as far as possible, the election of the Democratic Party Nominees and candidates endorsed by the CCDCC; and
  12. To perform such other duties and services as will benefit the Democratic Party.

Section C. CONTINUITY

The CCDCC is, and shall function as, a continuing body. To that end, upon the election of new officers or appointment of new chairs, or their removal from office, resignation, or protracted illness, the Chair may appoint two officers or chairs, whose responsibility shall be to ensure the safe and intact transfer of all records, correspondence, files, books, financial records, and documents as they pertain to the CCDCC to the newly elected or appointed officers or chairs to ensure the continued operation and function of said office and/or committee.

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ARTICLE III. MEMBERSHIP

Section A. QUALIFICATIONS for MEMBERSHIP

  1. All members of the CCDCC must be residents of Colusa County and must be registered to vote in Colusa County as members of the Democratic Party.
  2. Regular members, after certification by the Colusa County Clerk, shall enjoy full rights and privileges, including the right to vote, make and second motions, speak in all deliberations, have the prerogative to serve as officers of the CCDCC, and as such shall serve until their successors are elected.
  3. No person shall be denied membership because of race, color, ethnicity, national origin, religious beliefs (or the lack thereof), gender or sexual orientation, economic status, age, or disabilty (as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990).

Section B. TYPES of MEMBERSHIP

The California Elections Code defines three categories of Member and two categories of Alternates: Elected Members, Appointed Members, and Ex-Officio Members (all of which are classified as “Regular Members”); and Alternates for Ex-Officio Members and Alternates for Elected and Appointed Members. Their rights and duties are as specified within.

  1. Elected Members
    In accordance with the California Election Code, each Supervisorial District contained wholly within Colusa County shall be entitled to be represented by members residing in and elected from the Supervisorial District contained in Colusa County at the direct primary election in accordance with California Election Code Sections 7200 and 7225.
  2. Appointed Members
    1. A registered Democrat residing in a Supervisorial District may be appointed by the CCDCC to fill a vacancy occurring in that Supervisorial District per California Election Code Sections 7211 and 7212.
    2. The appointed member shall be entitled to the same rights and privileges as elected members of the CCDCC except that they must use the designation “Appointed Incumbent” upon seeking election to the CCDCC.
  3. Ex-Officio Members
    1. Ex-Officio Members of the CCDCC are those described in Election Code Section 7206.
    2. Ex-Officio Members shall be entitled to the same rights and privileges as elected members of the CCDCC, per Election Code Section 7206.
  4. Alternate Members
    1. Any Elected or Appointed Member in good standing may appoint an alternate member at the member’s pleasure. Per Elections Code 7208, alternate members shall have the right to vote only with written authorization of the member who appointed them.
    2. Any Ex-Officio Member may appoint an alternate member at the Ex-Officio Member’s pleasure.

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c. An alternate member has right of voice at meetings of the CCDCC even if the appointing member is present, but may vote only in the absence of that member. An alternate member may serve on committees with a regular member, may serve as a representative of the CCDCC to the State Committee or its Executive Board, provided all regular members who are candidates for representative are first given the opportunity to be elected or appointed to serve as an officer of the CCDCC.

Section C. SEATING of MEMBERS

  1. Elected and ex-officio members of the CCDCC shall be sworn in at the reorganization meeting.
  2. Appointed and alternate members shall be seated immediately upon appointment.
  3. New members of the CCDCC elected in the primary may be seated alternate members for the remainder of the term.
  4. All regular members shall receive a copy of these Bylaws and membership roster from the secretary following their seating.

Section D. OBLIGATIONS

  1. All Members and Alternates shall attend meetings of the CCDCC on a regular basis. Each member shall notify the Secretary of their expected absence if at all practicable.
  2. All Members and Alternates shall abide by the Bylaws.
  3. All Members and Alternates shall pay their membership dues promptly.

Section E. REMOVAL FROM OFFICE

  1. Voluntary Termination
    A member may tender their resignation in writing at any time. No further action by the CCDCC is required.
  2. Termination for Lack of Attendance
    1. The absence of an elected or appointed member for three consecutive regular meetings of the CCDCC without acceptable excuse shall automatically terminate the membership of that member in accordance with California Elections Code Section 7213.
    2. It is the duty of all members to ensure that their attendance at meetings of the CCDCC and all committees to which they are appointed is recorded.
    3. The following shall be the acceptable excuses for non-attendance: i. Illness
      ii. Absence by reason of official duty for the Democratic Party iii. Absence from Colusa County
      iv. Performance of official duties as an elected office holder
  3. Termination for Additional Grounds includes the following:
    1. A member, in their official capacity, supports a non-Democratic candidate for partisan office;
    2. An elected official or appointed member no longer meets membership requirements. In this case, removal is automatic;

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c. Death or mental incapacity;

  1. A member commits the CCDCC to an unauthorized expenditure; and
  2. A member repeatedly fails to abide by the Bylaws of the CCDCC.

4. Every effort shall be made to settle membership issues in an informal manner. Failing that, a member may be removed from office by advance notice and a two-thirds vote of members present and eligible to vote.

Section F. FILLING of VACANCIES

  1. Upon termination of the membership of any member, the CCDCC may appoint, at any meeting by affirmative vote of the majority of the members voting, as a member to fill that vacancy, any registered Democrat from the Supervisorial District from which the member whose membership was terminated was elected or appointed.
  2. Upon failure to elect from any Supervisorial District members in number equal to those provided in the California Elections code or ineligible to be members, the CCDCC may appoint at any meeting by affirmative vote of the majority of the members present and voting, as members any registered Democrat from that District, so that District’s representation equals the number provided or in the California Elections Code.
  3. Despite the above, once new members have been elected in the primary election, any vacancy shall be filled automatically by the top vote getting member elected residing in the District not already a regular member of the CCDCC.
    ARTICLE IV. PAYMENT OF DUES

The dues of the CCDCC shall be determined annually by the CCDCC and shall be paid voluntarily, preferably at the reorganization meeting.

ARTICLE V. OFFICERS

Section A. GENERAL
The officers of the CCDCC shall be, in descending order of rank,

  1. Chair
  2. Vice Chair
  3. Secretary
  4. Treasurer
  5. Parliamentarian

Section B. ELECTION and TERMS of OFFICE

  1. REORGANIZATION MEETING. A reorganization meeting shall be called in the manner specified by the California Elections Code.
  2. OATHS. At the reorganization meeting, Elected Members and Ex-Officio Members (or their designated permanent alternates) shall be sworn before any other business is undertaken.
  3. ELECTION of CHAIR. The incumbent Chair shall then preside over the election of the incoming Chair. If the incumbent Chair is not available, or if the incumbent is running for

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re-election, the next highest ranking incumbent officer present shall preside over the election of the new Chair.

  1. ELECTION of OFFICERS. The newly elected Chair shall preside over the election of all other officers. Votes for the officers shall be by secret ballot unless there is only one nominee for the office. In such case, the election vote shall be viva voce.
  2. VACANCY. If a vacancy should occur among the officers of the CCDCC, then notice of that vacancy shall appear in the minutes of the next scheduled meeting, and the election of an officer to fill that vacancy shall appear on the agenda of the subsequently scheduled meeting. Election shall be by simple majority of the voting members present.
  3. TERMS of OFFICE. All officers shall serve in their position until the next reorganization meeting or until resignation or removal from office.
  4. RESIGNATION. Officers may resign their positions by submission of a written or emailed letter of resignation to the Chair of the CCDCC.
  5. REMOVAL FROM OFFICE. Officeholders may be removed from office by a simple two-thirds vote of voting members present at any regular or special meeting of the membership. Officers who lose their positions as members shall also lose their positions as officers. Written notice must be sent to the officer to be removed at least 10 days prior to the regular meeting, stating the alleged grounds, and the same notice must be sent to all members. Prior to the vote to remove, the officer shall be allowed 30 minutes during which the officer and/or any person selected by the officers shall be allowed to address the CCDCC before the vote.

Section C. DUTIES

1. CHAIR. The Chair is the presiding officer, chief executive officer, chief administrative officer, and official spokesperson of both the CCDCC and the Democratic Party in Colusa County. As such, the Chair shall

  1. preside at all meetings of the CCDCC and its Executive Board;
  2. be the official spokes person for the Democratic Party in Colusa County;
  3. have the authority to call special or emergency meetings, but must do so at the request of three (3) or more members of the CCDCC;
  4. work with the Executive Board to set the agenda for all regular meetings of the CCDCC;
  5. have the authority to sign contracts, checks, drafts, and other documents in the furtherance of CCDCC business;
  6. present an Annual Report to the CCDCC at its regularly scheduled organizational meeting;
  7. appoint chairs of committees as are required to carry out the program of the CCDCC;
  8. be an ex-officio member of all committees;
  9. serve as CCDCC representative to the California State Executive Board of the State Central Committee; and
  10. discharge such other duties as the CCDCC may delegate to the Chair or as required by these Bylaws or by law.

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2. VICE CHAIR. The Vice Chair shall

  1. perform the duties of the Chair when the Chair is absent;
  2. automatically become Chair in the event of the death, ineligibility, or long-term incapacity of the elected Chair; and
  3. perform such other duties as the Vice Chair and the CCDCC shall mutually decide.

3. SECRETARY. The Secretary shall

  1. record accurate minutes of all meetings of the CCDCC and Executive Board and disseminate them to the membership;
  2. work with the Chair and the Executive Board to prepare the agendas for all regular CCDCC meetings and disseminate them to the membership;
  3. inform the membership of the time and place of all meetings of the membership;
  4. be custodian of all files, records, and papers of the CCDCC, except as otherwise provided;
  5. keep the roll (names, addresses, telephone numbers, email addresses) of the membership of the CCDCC;
  6. maintain a record of attendance at all meetings; and
  7. conduct the correspondence of the CCDCC.

4. TREASURER. The Treasurer shall

  1. take charge of all CCDCC funds and disburse them in accordance with CCDCC policies and procedures;
  2. collect all membership dues;
  3. maintain a record of all bank accounts, accounts payable, and accounts receivable; money deposited may be withdrawn only by checks and drafts, countersigned by the Chair or Vice Chair;
  4. submit a report at all regular CCDCC meetings;
  5. submit an annual budget in a timely fashion; and
  6. prepare and submit all financial reports as required by law.

5. PARLIAMENTARIAN. The Parliamentarian shall

a. advise the Chair as to whether a quorum is present at the onset of every meeting, and alert the Chair when membership departures signify that a quorum is no longer present;

b. advise the Chair on the proper interpretation for the Bylaws and Robert’s Rules of Order; and

c. perform such other duties as the Parliamentarian and the CCDCC shall mutually decide.

ARTICLE VI. MEETINGS

Section A. GENERAL

1. QUORUM. At all meetings, a quorum shall consist of a simple majority of voting members.

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  1. ADVANCE NOTICE. Except for emergency meetings, members shall be notified of the time and place of the meeting no later than five (5) days prior to the scheduled date of the meetings. The notice shall contain an agenda and the minutes of the preceding general session.
  2. Notification may be done by email. Members without email addresses may pick up copies of the agenda and minutes prior to the meeting.
  3. AGENDAS. The Secretary, in coordination with the Chair and the Executive Board, normally sets the agenda for meetings. Members may suggest items to be included on the agenda to the Secretary no later than seven (7) days prior to the next scheduled meeting. Items not on the agenda may not be considered at any meeting unless such consideration is approved by a simple majority of voting members present.
  4. PARLIAMENTARY PROCEDURES. In all cases not covered by law or by these bylaws, procedures shall be governed by Robert’s Rules of Order.
  5. PARICIPATION. A member must be present in order to participate in the business of the CCDCC or any subordinate body of the CCDCC. No proxy or absentee voting shall be permitted.

Section B. REGULAR MEETINGS

  1. The CCDCC shall meet regularly, at least every other month. The meeting date may be temporarily changed by a majority vote of those present at a regular meeting.
  2. The CCDCC Chair may cancel the next regular meeting provided that members are notified.
  3. The annual organizational meeting shall replace the first meeting of the calendar year.
  4. Emergency matters may be settled by telephone vote of the Executive Committee called by the CCDCC Chair. Results should be recorded and announced at the next regular meeting.

Section C. EMERGENCY/SPECIAL MEETINGS

  1. Emergency or special meetings may be called by the CCDCC Chair or by one-third of the regular members.
  2. As much notice as possible shall be given.

Section D. STATE MEETINGS

  1. In selecting delegates to the State Democratic Central Committee, the CCDCC shall be guided by Section 4 of Article II of the SDCC Bylaws. Should the number of CCDCC members wishing to attend exceed the allotted number of delegates, the question as to who shall be a delegate and who shall be an observer shall be settled by secret ballot voted upon by the CCDCC membership.
  2. The name of any member of the CCDCC may be placed in nomination by a member of the CCDCC. A member may nominate themself. If possible, one half of the delegation shall be female and one half shall be male. In case of a tie vote, the winner shall be selected by lot.
  3. Vacancies shall be filled in the same manner.

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Section A. FUNCTIONS

ARTICLE VII. COMMITTEES

In any properly run deliberative body, most of the real work of that body is done in committees. Most issues that come before the CCDCC should be referred to committee for consideration and recommendations. The CCDCC then votes to accept or reject the committee’s recommendations.

Section B. SUBCOMMITTEES

  1. The CCDCC will act as a Standing Committee of the whole and thereby carry out the duties listed below. The Committee may appoint subcommittees.
  2. Possible subcommittees include but are not limited to Finance and Budget, Bylaws, Legislation and Issues, Policy and Planning, Publicity and Events, Voter Registration, Elections, and Get Out the Vote.

Section C. FORMATION and TERMINATION of SUBCOMMITTEES

New subcommittees may be formed by the passage of a simple motion by the membership to form such a committee. Existing subcommittees may be terminated by the passage of a simple motion by the membership to terminate that committee.

Section D. SUBCOMMITTEE MEMBERSHIP

  1. Membership on subcommittees is by appointment by the CCDCC Chair. In making such appointments, the Chair shall be guided by a member’s willingness to participate on that particular subcommittee.
  2. Subcommittee members may resign from any committee by letter of committee resignation to the CCDCC Chair.
  3. The CCDCC Chair is an ex-officio member of all subcommittees, save for the Nominations subcommittee.

Section E. SUBCOMMITTEE CHAIRS

The CCDCC Chair may opt to appoint a Subcommittee Chair or allow subcommittee members to elect their own Chair.

Section F. RELAXED PROCEDURES

At the option of the Subcommittee Chair, subcommittees may relax the rules of procedure and run themselves in a more informal fashion. Such relaxed procedures may include the following: Members may speak or make motions without being recognized by the Chair; motions do not have to be seconded to be considered; members may speak as often and for as long as they can politely maintain the attention of other members; minutes are not required, although it is customary for the Chair to take personal notes; the Chair may take part in discussions, make motions, and vote.

ARTICLE VIII. EXECUTIVE BOARD

Section A. GENERAL

There shall be an Executive Board of the CCDCC, which shall have all the powers and duties of the CCDCC when it is not in actual session.

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Section B. COMPOSITION

The Executive Board shall consist of all officers of the CCDCC and two members at large selected from the membership of the CCDCC at the Annual Organizational meeting.

Section C. SPECIAL MEETINGS

The Executive Board may convene in special meetings at either the call of the Chair and at such time and such place as they may designate, or upon request by five or more members of the Executive Board requesting the Chair to call a special meeting.

Section D. MINUTES

Minutes of the Executive Board shall be kept and presented at the next regular Central Committee meeting.

ARTICLE IX. BUDGET AND FINANCE

Section A. GENERAL.
An annual budget may be proposed by the Chair and Treasurer.

Section B. EXPENDITURES

  1. All appropriations and bills shall be presented to the Treasurer, who shall pay all approved expenditures without further authorization. The Treasurer will report all expenditures at the next meeting.
  2. The Chairperson and Treasurer are authorized to sign checks on any account carried by the CCDCC, provided the expenditure has been duly authorized. All checks require two signatures.
  3. No member of the CCDCC shall make any financial commitment involving the expenditure of the CCDCC’s funds other than those provided herein unless such person has been authorized by a motion passed by the CCDCC specifically authorizing such expenditure or commitment. Violation of this provision shall constitute grounds for termination of the member’s membership. Any member of the CCDCC may file the charges.

Section C. RECEIPTS

All funds received either by donation of sale of tickets or other items in connection with the activities of any committee of the CCDCC shall be deposited in to the Treasury of the CCDCC. Any unused funds appropriated to a committee must be returned to the CCDCC’s Treasury.

ARTICLE X. CANDIDATE NOMINATION AND ENDORSEMENT

Section A. NOMINATION

The CCDCC, alone or in conjunction with other County Committee or State Committee members, shall nominate candidates to fill vacancies as provided by the California Election Code.

Section B. ENDORSEMENT in NON-PARTISAN or SPECIAL ELECTIONS

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  1. The CCDCC may endorse, by affirmative vote of 60 percent of the full membership, any Democrat who has filed as a candidate for non-partisan office or for partisan office in a special election.
    When a 60 percent vote is not achieved on the first ballot, succeeding ballots may be taken. All candidates shall be listed on the first ballot. “No Endorsement” shall be an option on each ballot and shall be counted toward the total. If no endorsement is made, succeeding ballots shall drop the name or names of the candidates receiving less than 20 percent of the vote. Where there is no candidate who has less than 20 percent of the vote, or three ballots have been taken, it shall be deemed that the CCDCC has made no endorsement in said race.
  2. The CCDCC shall not endorse more candidates for an office than the number to be elected for that office.
  3. The CCDCC shall make no form of endorsement other than an official endorsement as expressly provided for herein and shall not support in any way a candidate who is not a Democrat.
  4. If a special election in Colusa County is called to take place within 30 days after the close of filing, the Executive Board may endorse, by affirmative vote of 60 percent of the full membership voting, any Democrat who has filed for that office, unless there is a scheduled meeting of the CCDCC prior to the election. The Executive Board may delegate its endorsement power to the CCDCC.
  5. No endorsement shall take place until the deadline for filing has passed.
  6. Any voting member may request a secret ballot at any stage in the proceedings.
  7. Alternates may participate and vote on endorsements as members of the CCDCC. In all other proceedings of the CCDCC regarding endorsement of candidates, alternates may only vote in the absence of their Delegate.
    ARTICLE XI. RESOLUTIONS

Section A. FORMAT
The following shall govern the format of resolutions:

  1. All resolutions must be typed and submitted electronically.
  2. The resolution must be submitted to the Chair of the Executive Board at least seven (7) days in advance of the meeting at which it is to be considered.
  3. Whereas clauses must be limited to three or fewer and Resolved clauses to two or fewer.
  4. All resolutions must contain an “action clause” indicating the action requested.
  5. Resolutions must be no longer than one side of one typewritten page (8 1⁄2” x 11”).

Section B. PROCEDURES

  1. The Executive Board shall consider only those resolutions submitted by a member of the CCDCC, the State Committee, an Assembly District Committee, a Region, a subcommittee of the CCDCC, or by an entity chartered by the CCDCC.
  2. The Executive Board may combine similar resolutions by re-writing and may reject resolutions that repeat past positions unless substantially new actions are proposed.

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3. Except upon majority vote, the Executive Board shall not consider any resolutions not in conformity with the foregoing rules.

4. A resolution approved by the Executive Board shall be brought up automatically for consideration at the next regular meeting of the CCDCC.

5. No resolution shall be passed except upon 60 percent affirmative vote by the members of the CCDCC present the meeting at which the resolution is considered.

ARTICLE XII. CHARTERING

Section A. GENERAL

  1. AUTHORIZATION. Section 7240 of the California Elections Code places the CCDCC in charge of all Democratic Party political activities in Colusa County. Section 7242 authorizes the CCDCC to take such actions as shall promote the Democratic Party and its activities.
  2. This has been interpreted by the State Central Committee of the California Democratic Party to include the chartering of organizations (Political Action Committees) to engage in political activities in the name of the Democratic Party.
  3. REPRESENTATION of the DEMOCRATIC PARTY. No organization may purport itself as representing the Democratic Party for the purpose of raising funds or engaging in political activity without the authorization of the Democratic Party. In Colusa County, that authorization must come from the CCDCC.
  4. USE of “DEMOCRATIC” and “DEMOCRAT.” Chartered organizations are authorized by the CCDCC to use the words “Democratic” and/or “Democrat” in their organization name. Other groups using these words in their names may not legally represent themselves as affiliated with the Democratic Party or engage in political activity (as defined by law) in the name of the Democratic Party.
  5. AFFILIATION. Chartered organizations are independent organizations and are not “affiliated” with the CCDCC as the term is used in the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 or in other federal, state, or local laws or regulations. The CCDCC may not— directly or indirectly—finance, maintain, or control any organization chartered under this Article.
  6. PURPOSES. Chartered organizations shall promote the interests of the Democratic Party, act to elect Democrats to federal, state, and local offices, raise and expend funds on behalf of the Democratic Party and its candidates, and engage in such other activities as shall promote the above purposes.

Section B. CHARTERING

  1. SPONSORING MEMBER. Each organization seeking a charter shall have a sworn member of the CCDCC as its sponsoring member. This sponsoring member shall act as liaison between the CCDCC and the organization.
  2. APPLICATION. The organization shall apply for the charter in writing. The written application shall contain the following:

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  1. a statement of the purposes of the organization;
  2. a list of at least twenty (20) active members;
  3. a list of the organization’s officers;
  4. an affirmation that all active members are registered Democrats;
  5. a copy of the organization’s Bylaws or rules of procedure; and
  6. a check for the first year’s charter fee.

3. MOTION to CONSIDER the GRANTING of a CHARTER. The sponsoring member shall disseminate the above information to the members of the CCDCC in a timely fashion. Subsequent to this dissemination, the sponsoring member shall move that the organization be considered for chartering by the CCDCC. If the motion is adopted, the charter may be granted at the following general meeting. The granting of the charter should appear on the agenda of that subsequent meeting.

4. GRANTING of the CHARTER. At any general meeting subsequent to the meeting at which the motion to consider was made, the CCDCC may vote by simple majority to grant the charter. The Chairman of the CCDCC will send a letter to that effect, include a formal Certificate of Charter, and include a copy of these Bylaws.

Section C. TERMINATION of CHARTER

  1. AUTOMATIC TERMINATION at YEAR’S END. All charters expire automatically at midnight on the 31st of December unless renewed by majority vote of the CCDCC prior to that time.
  2. TERMINATION FOR CAUSE. A charter may be terminated instantly by the CCDCC by a two-thirds vote of members present and voting if the public actions of the chartered organization are seen by the CCDCC to reflect discredit on the Democratic Party or are seen by the CCDCC to be against the best interests of the Democratic Party.
    ARTICLE XIII. AMENDMENTS

Section A. GENERAL

These Bylaws may be revised or amended at any regular or special meeting of the CCDCC by a two-thirds vote of the voting members present, providing that the proposed revisions and amendments have been submitted to the CCDCC in writing no later than twenty-eight (28) days previously.

Section B. SERIATIM CONSIDERATION and ADOPTION

Revisions of the Bylaws and lengthy amendments may be considered and individually discussed and approved by parts; that is, by article, section, and sub-section.

Section C. EFFECT
All amendments and revisions take effect immediately upon adoption.