Bylaws of the Green Party of San Bernardino County

Bylaws of the Green Party of San Bernardino County
Adopted September 24, 2016
Approved By:  Art Kunkin, Carol Bouldin, James Laird, Lucille Laird, Jesse Moorman, Michael Huipio, Steven (Sunny) Downer

1. Name
This organization is the Green Party of San Bernardino County (GPSB). The Green Party of San Bernardino County is a geographic division of the Green Party of California (GPCA).

2. Purpose
The purpose of these bylaws is to provide for the operation of the San Bernardino County Green Party in a manner consistent with Green values, symbolized by the traditional ten key values: Ecological Wisdom, Nonviolence, Social Justice, Feminism, Respect for Diversity, Grassroots Democracy, Decentralization, Community-based Economics, Personal and Global Responsibility, Future Focus

3. Organizational Structure

3.1 Membership in the Green Party of San Bernardino County
Anyone resident in the county, with current valid registration as a Green Party voter in San Bernardino County, is a member of the GPSB.
Residents of San Bernardino County who are ineligible to vote, but who would otherwise be registered Green, may become members of the GPSB by registering with the GPSB.

3.2 County Council
The County Council (Council) is a representative body of the GPSB membership, as described in the bylaws of GPCA. The Council shall be responsible for the performance of administrative, managerial, financial, political and executive functions required by the GPSB. The performance of all duties not specified in these bylaws will be the responsibility of the County Council.

Only GPSB members are eligible for membership on the County Council.

The number of Council members shall be seven.

3.2 Alternates to the Council
Any Council member may send an alternate representative to Council meetings. Alternates must be GPSB members.

To designate an alternate, a Council member must provide either written authorization to the Secretary (if one has been installed), or direct notification to two Council members attending the meeting.

4. Officers
Officers must be GPSB members in good standing, but need not be Council members. The position of Treasurer must be filled. The Council may optionally choose other officers as they are defined in these bylaws.

The term of all officers shall be one year from the date of confirmation or until a new officer is elected and confirmed. All officers serve at the pleasure of the Council.

4.1 Treasurer
The Treasurer shall be primarily responsible for the collection, management and disbursement of GPSB funds, for filing tax returns and for reporting to the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC).

4.2 Secretary
The Secretary shall be responsible for recording, publishing and making available the minutes of County Council meetings.

5. Council meetings
The Council shall meet at regular intervals, in open meetings, at a time and place determined by the Council. Meetings may be in person, by teleconference or other electronic conferencing.

5.1 Quorums for County Council Meetings
Fifty per cent of the County Council’s total membership constitutes a quorum.
Without a quorum, meetings may take place and recommendations may be made,  but no decisions may be made.

5.2 Decision-Making Processes
The process known as Modified Consensus shall be used at all County Council and committee meetings. Appendix “A” of this document contains one example of a Modified Consensus process.

After following the Modified Consensus process, if any GPSB member present at a Council meeting has unresolved concerns regarding a proposal before the Council, a vote shall be taken. Only Council members may cast votes at Council meetings.
All votes shall be by show of hands except when voting in elections or to suspend members.

5.3 Closed Meetings
The Council may meet in closed session for legal matters, such as, lawsuits or the termination of paid employees. The minutes of closed meetings shall be made available as soon as it is legally advisable to do so.

6. Rights of members
All members of the San Bernardino County Green Party are vested with the following rights:

6.1 Participation
No member may be excluded from full participation in party activities or attendance at open meetings of any party body unless that member has been formally suspended.

Full participation includes attendance, comment, the presentation of proposals and decision making.

A GPSB member who by agitation or abusive behavior disrupts a GPSB meeting may be expelled. All members present, except for the subject member, may participate in the vote if consensus cannot be achieved.

6.2 Information
The time and place of all open County Council meetings shall be published in a time and manner that facilitates participation by the members of the Green Party of San Bernardino County. An exception to this requirement is made for extraordinary circumstances.

GPSB members have the right to prompt and fair notice of decisions reached by the County Council, and the right to know how all the Council members voted on specific proposals.

6.3 Representation
Any member may present valid statements or proposals at party meetings by proxy. To be a valid statement or proposal, the document must be legible, less than three pages in length, contain the name and address of the originator and must be addressed to the County Council.

Any Council member presented with a valid statement or proposal from a GPSB member must submit it to the body of GPSB to which it is addressed. County Council members must make available to GPSB members the telephone number where they can be contacted.

7. Election, appointment and removal of County Council members

7.1 Election of Council members
Council members will be elected in direct primary elections. The method of election is specified in the GPCA bylaws and in state law.

7.2 Filling of vacancies on the County Council
The County Council may fill vacancies on the Council by nomination and confirmation of a new member at a Council meeting. When a vacancy occurs on the Council, the Council shall publish notice of the vacancy and allow nominations for membership on the Council. Such procedure shall conform to the bylaws of the Green Party of California.

7.3 Removal
Council members may resign from office by sending written notice to Council. The Council may remove the member from office by resolution when one loses qualification for Council membership. When a member of GPSB County Council changes residence to a place outside of San Bernardino County, ceases to be registered as a Green Party voter, fails to attend three consecutive Council meetings without sending an alternate, dies, or is otherwise unable to serve as a member of the County Council, the Council may remove the member.

8. Procedure for the Amendment of These Bylaws
A petition containing the text of the proposed amendment and the names, signatures and addresses of three GPSB members shall be filed with the County Council, either through  the Secretary, or through an individual member of the County Council.
When a petition for amending these bylaws has been filed,  the County Council shall, at its next meeting, set a date, time and place for an amendment meeting. Notice of the amendment meeting shall be published and made available to members.
If consensus cannot be achieved, a bylaws amendment may be adopted by a vote of sixty percent of those Council members present at the amendment meeting.

Appendix A
Modified Consensus
•  State the issue
•  Clarify what question is to be decided
•  Discuss all viewpoints
•  Make proposals trying to incorporate all views
•  Discuss unresolved questions
•  Consider amendments
•  Test for consensus
•  If germane concerns cannot be resolved, the group may try measures such as the following:
   •   Return to an earlier step.
   •   Withdraw the proposal.
   •   Withdraw the concern.
   •   Refer proposal to a committee reflecting all points of view to report to next meeting.
   •   Empower a committee to examine issue and make decision.
   •   Take a straw poll.
   •   Modify proposal to include or represent concerns.
   •   Those with unresolved concerns step aside without favoring the proposal.
   •   Schedule community-building sessions to deal with emotional issues.
   •   Schedule mediation for parties at odds.
   •   Try to identify ambiguous values or values in conflict.
•  Consensus is achieved when there are no more unresolved concerns.

•  In the event of unresolvable concerns, the issue can be called to a vote. A sixty percent majority is required to pass.