By-Laws of the Native American Caucus Adopted April 15, 2005
of the California Democratic Party
MISSION STATEMENT The Native American Caucus of the California Democratic Party seeks to raise political and civic consciousness to Native American issues while preserving the cultural heritage of the state's minority and indigenous populations. The Caucus strives to accomplish this by increasing political participation of individuals in all activities of the Democratic Party, in particular, expanding Native American representation in voter registration, voter education, legislative tracking, outreach to interested Democratic Assembly Districts, County Central Committees, Democratic Clubs, community and civic organizations.
- Enhance political and public awareness, education, involvement and civic responsibility among Native Americans.
- Promote public awareness of the political status of tribal nations through media education.
- Promote voter registration and outreach and encourage Native Americans to exercise their rights to vote and to run for public office.
- Identify issues of concern to Native Americans and pursue solutions through the democratic process.
Article I - Policy and Goals
Section 1 - It shall be the policy of this caucus, in the execution of all endeavors, to contribute to the growth and influence of the Democratic Party, to establish and maintain an inclusive Native American Indian presence in the party and to support the party candidates for Democratic leadership throughout the state and nation.
Section 2 - We shall hold workshops and programs to educate and train interested Democrats to participate in voter training, outreach, political education, legislative tracking, research and how to participate in the Democratic Party.
Section 3 - We shall hold workshops and programs to educate interested individuals in the cultural history and current issues of concern to the California Indian Nations.
Section 4 - We shall assist Democratic legislative organizations and legislators in establishing relationships with the members and communities of the Native American Caucus.
Section 5 - We shall facilitate the organization of Democrats.
Section 6 - We shall maintain a relationship with the State Party and assist in disseminating party information to our members.
Article II - Membership
Section 1 - Membership shall include those persons who are registered Democrats with an interest in developing a broader understanding of issues that affect the Native American community, inclusion in the educational process of how the political system works, exchanging cultural education, political training, voter outreach and participation of the Indian Nations in the Democratic Party and who support the mission of this caucus.
Section 2 - Only those persons who are registered Democrats shall be eligible for full membership. They will be entitled to all membership privileges upon payment of annual dues.
Section 3 - Members and non-members shall be eligible to participate in discussions, meetings and training workshops, but voting and holding office shall be restricted to members only.
Section 4 - The Native American Caucus supports non-discrimination in membership, including gender, race, sexual orientation, age, disability, religion, national origin, or income level. We are inclusive.
Article III - Membership Dues
Section 1 - The amount of dues payable for membership shall be established by the Executive Board by simple majority at an officially designated and noticed executive board meeting. Notice of intent to raise dues shall be established in writing to the membership prior to the actual increase in annual dues.
Section 2 - Membership dues are $25.00 and renewed at the State Convention for the period of a full year.
Section 3 - This caucus waives any dues for economic hardship.
Article IV - Executive Board
Section 1 - The officers, chairperson, 1st and 2nd vice chairpersons, immediate past chairperson, and committee officers shall constitute the Executive Board. Any member of the executive board may be removed following two consecutive absences from noticed meetings or two unexcused absences during the calendar year. Absences may only be excused by the Chairpersons.
Section 2 - The Executive Board shall meet no less than six times during the calendar year, including online meetings, for the purpose of planning and directing the activities and policies for the calendar year. Joint meetings with other CDP Caucuses (cauci), or their members, will occur at least once during each calendar year.
Section 3 - A plurality of members of the Executive Board shall constitute a quorum. No proxies shall be allowed.
Section 4 - Special meetings of the board may be called by any of the members of the board but special meetings will not be subject to the absence or excused policy.
Article V - Officers
Section 1 - The officers of the CDP Native American Caucus will be elected at the first state convention of the calendar year and shall hold office for two years with election at the state convention.
Section 2 - The offices and officers shall be: Chairperson, 1st Vice Chairperson, 2nd Vice Chairperson, Immediate Past Chairperson, Treasurer, Recording Secretary, Parliamentarian and four Executive Board officers.
Section 3 - Duties of officers.
A. Chair: The Chair shall preside over meetings and name special project committees. The Chair is a member of all committees. Pursuant to compliance with the CDP bylaws, the Chair must be a member of the DSCC before election.
B. Vice Chairs: The two Vice Chairs shall assist the chair and preside over meetings in the Chairs absence. In the absence of the first vice chairperson, the second vice chairperson will conduct the meeting. The Vice Chairs may serve on and chair special project committees.
C. Immediate past chairperson: The immediate past chairperson shall provide active support and continuity to the board.
D. Treasurer Pursuant to compliance with the CDP bylaws, the Treasurer must be a member of the DSCC before election. The treasurer shall:
a. Collect dues from the membership.E. Recording Secretary: The Recording Secretary shall attend all general meetings, online meetings, and regular executive board meetings and take minutes of the proceedings.
b. Keep the financial records of the caucus.
c. File quarterly reports with the Treasurer of the Democratic State Party to comply with the law.
d. File the appropriate federal and state campaign disclosure reports.
e. Solicit and oversee fundraising in the name of the Democratic Party consistent with the by-laws and purposes of the Democratic Party.
f. Sign all checks as authorized by the Executive Board.
g. Comply with all of the state and federal reporting laws.
F. Corresponding Secretary: The Corresponding Secretary shall:
a. Accurately maintain all membership records, e-mail addresses, and documents relating to the caucus.G. Parliamentarian The Parliamentarian shall provide advice, instruction and correct interpretation of Parliamentarian procedure and Roberts Rules of Order H. Executive Board Officers Executive Board officers will serve as committee chairs for policy, legislation, voter outreach training, and research
b. Receive, record, and answer regular or e-mailed communications.
c. Provide notice of meetings and online discussions to executive board members and the membership.
Section 4 - Should a member elected as an officer of the caucus cease to be a member for any reason, such a vacancy must be filled within 60 days of the vacancy. The executive board shall be empowered to fill any vacancies that occur until the next election.
Article VI - Meetings
Section 1 - Regular meetings of the membership will be held at the State Party Convention and at the California State Party Executive Board meetings each calendar year.
Section 2 - Special online meetings and discussions will be noticed at least a week in advance by e-mail and be open to members and all interested parties.
Section 3 - Regional meetings for outreach and training will be noticed at least a week in advance by e-mail, fax and phone open to members and all interested parties.
Section 4 - Pursuant to the Charter of the Democratic Party of the United States, Article 9, Section 12, no secret ballots are allowed on any matter in the caucus.
Article VII - Caucus Records and Reports
Section 1 - The caucus shall maintain adequate and correct accounts, books, and records of all caucus activities. All such books and records shall be maintained by the appropriate constitutional officer.
Section 2 - Such books and records shall be open to inspection by officers and members in good standing at all times for purposes approved by the Executive Board upon giving adequate and reasonable notice before said inspection.
Section 3 - There shall be a bi-annual report of membership and accounting given to the Executive Board and an annual report to membership at the state convention at the beginning of the calendar year.
Article VIII -Endorsements
Section 1 - The caucus may not endorse candidates for public office that are not members of the Democratic Party pursuant to the by-laws of the California Democratic Party, the State Democratic Central Committee and all official units of the California Democratic Party.
Section 2 - The caucus is prohibited from endorsing candidates for partisan or non-partisan office unless a candidate has received the official endorsement of the California Democratic Party, as provided in its bylaws. Furthermore, unless a candidate has received the official endorsement of the CDP, all motions of support, recommendation, or other expressions of approval, no matter how denominated, will be ruled out of order at any meeting of this caucus.
Article IX - Amendments
Section 1 - Amendments to the bylaws may be initiated by the Executive Board or by a written petition signed by 5% of eligible members.
Section 2 - The Executive Board shall consider such recommendations and petitions and make additions or changes supported by a majority of board members.
Article X - Parliamentary Procedures
Section 1 - All proceedings not covered in this Constitution of Bylaws shall be governed by the latest edition of Robert's Rules of Order.