FONTANA DEMS BYLAWS
ARTICLE I – NAME
The name of this organization shall be the “Fontana Dems” also known as the “Fontana Democratic Club,” “Fontana Dems Club” and “FDC.”
ARTICLE II – PURPOSE
The purpose of this organization shall be to foster the ideals and principles of the Democratic Party and to encourage Democratic Party activity in Fontana and nearby communities. It shall be the policy of this organization to contribute to the growth of the Democratic Party and to develop leadership and party harmony.
ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP
Section A – Eligibility
Anyone registered as a Democrat or is ineligible to vote due to age or citizenship status but pledges to register as a Democrat when eligible; is at least thirteen (13) years old; supports the purpose of the Fontana Democratic Club as stated in Article II above, maintains that status throughout their membership, and has read and agreed to the Code of Conduct (Appendix A), shall be eligible for membership in this organization.
Section B – Good Standing
Any eligible member whose annual dues are currently paid or had waived shall be considered a member in good standing, hereafter referred to as a member. Only members in good standing may attend and participate in meetings and hold elected officer positions.
Section C – Dues
Dues shall be reviewed annually and recommended by the Executive Board for approval by the membership to go into effect for the following membership year. Dues are due and payable upon joining FDC and annually at the beginning of every calendar year thereafter. Payment of dues shall not be obligatory to anyone for whom it constitutes an economic hardship after due consideration and approval by the Executive Board.
Section D – Voting
A member in good standing who has attended at least one prior general meeting in a calendar year or has been a member at least 30 days shall be eligible to vote at regular or special meetings. No proxy shall be permitted. The FDC Executive Board may establish rules for the conduct of club elections by electronic means, including internet voting by members entitled to vote. These rules must provide for reasonable access to voting and to the confidentiality and security of such voting process.
Section E – Nominations and Elections of Club Representatives
For the selection of representatives to California Democratic Party (CDP) Pre-Endorsing Conferences, Club representatives shall be allocated as follows: one representative, resident in the Assembly District and duly registered as a member of the Democratic Party of California, for each full (not a fraction thereof) 20 members in good standing registered to vote in the Assembly District who were listed on the roster submitted to the SBCDCC, the appropriate Regional Director and the CDP Secretary no later than the date announced by the CDP in accordance with the CDP bylaws.
Subsection BE.1. – Inclusion on Club Roster
Only members in good standing, who are registered Democrats, as of the date announced by the CDP in accordance with the CDP bylaws, shall be included on the roster; “Member in Good Standing” shall mean a member whose dues are current, or have been waived due to economic hardship; and the status of such members shall be certified by the Club’s President, Secretary, or Treasurer.
Subsection BE.2. – Club Representative(s)
The Club’s representatives to any particular pre-endorsing conference shall be from the roster described above and that the overall list of representatives to all conferences adhere to the Equal Division Rule, to the extent possible.
Said representatives shall be elected by nominations submitted in writing. Self-nominations and nominations from the floor are permitted during the regular or special meeting immediately following the conclusion of the nomination period, however, the only nominees that are members in good standing, and have agreed in writing to abide by the Code of Conduct are eligible to be a Club Representative.
ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS
Section A – Elected Officers
Elected officers of this organization shall be the President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. Each shall be elected at the general meeting in January of each even-numbered year.
Section B. Duties of Officers
Subsection B.1. – President
The President shall
- preside over all Club and Executive Board meetings
- pre-approve any written correspondence on behalf of the organization
- be the sole spokesperson of the FDC
- serve as an ex-officio, non-voting member on all committees, except Finance Committee, in which they shall be a voting member; and the Political Action Committee, in which they shall serve as Chair
- In collaboration with the Vice President and Treasurer, develop an annual budget for review by the Executive Board and ratification by the membership
Subsection B.2. – Vice President
The Vice President shall
- preside over FDC and Executive Board meetings in the absence of the President;
- support the President in the creation of the Club and Executive Board agendas
- in collaboration with the President, oversee the endorsement process of the Club for candidates for elected offices and ballot measures
- Serve as ex-officio of the Precinct Captains Committee
Subsection B.3. – Secretary
The Secretary shall
- be the official record keeper of the FDC and shall keep all records of the FDC, including, but not limited to, membership roster, meeting agendas and minutes, formal reports and correspondence.
- handle all internal correspondence in collaboration with the President and Vice-President, and Treasurer.
- Maintain a roster of all FDC members, members in good-standing, and determine the quorum of voting members at each meeting in which a vote will be taken.
- Serve as ex-officio of the Communications Committee
Subsection B.4. – Treasurer
The Treasurer shall
- serve as the Chief Financial Officer of the Club
- take custody of all funds collected, raised, or received by this organization
- issue a pre-numbered receipt for all money received; and
- maintain a bank account for the deposit of such funds
- ensure ordinary business expenses reflected in the FDC’s adopted annual budget are paid in a timely manner and make disbursements at the direction of the Executive Board or Membership and ensure checks issued are signed by two signatories of the executive board
- In collaboration with the President and Vice-President, complete and submit all reports required by law including the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) and the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to the appropriate agency.
- Serve as ex-officio of the Finance Committee
Section C – Elections
Elections shall be held annually at the January regular meeting in even-numbered years. A nominating committee shall be appointed of at least three members in good standing who are not seeking an office.
Subsection 1 – Nominations
The nominating committee shall conduct the nomination process and shall provide a timeline to include a nomination period, campaign period, and election date based upon the following schedule: the nomination period begins at the November general meeting; it concludes at the chair’s call after all nominations are heard at the election meeting. Only members in good standing can be nominated and elected to officer positions.
The nominating committee shall ensure there is at least one candidate for each elective office and report the nominations at the December general meeting.
Subsection 2 – Election Process
The nominating committee shall conduct the election and may receive nominations from the floor at the election meeting, if any. In order of the candidates’ last names in alphabetical order or by random draw, candidates may speak for up to five (5) minutes. After each candidate has had the opportunity to speak, up to three (3) questions, selected by the chair from a random selection of members, shall be asked of candidates. Each candidate may respond in less than three (3) minutes.
Subsection 3 – Voting
The election may be held by show of hands or voice vote for uncontested offices. A secret ballot will be used for any contested offices. The voting method shall be first-past-the-post in elections with only two candidates for the office and ranked-choice instant-runoff voting in elections with three or more candidates. Candidates who receive a majority of votes shall be elected into office.
If elected to multiple positions, candidates may select which office they prefer. The office they do not select shall go to the runner-up (if any), who may accept or decline.
Section D – Removals and Vacancies
Subsection 1 – Removal
An elected officer may be removed from office by a two-thirds vote of the members at a general meeting for such causes as missing three unexcused consecutive meetings or non-performance of duties, providing the membership and the officer have been notified ten days in advance of the meeting of the proposed action against the officer. Any member whose actions are judged to be prejudicial or detrimental to the organization or in violation of the Code of Conduct by a majority of the Executive Board may be expelled from membership by a two-thirds vote at any general meeting. A removal election shall take place at a special or regular general meeting.
Subsection 2 – Removal Process
Any member may charge an officer with a removal resolution signed by at least five members. At a removal election, the resolution initiator shall read the resolution aloud. The officer considered for removal shall have up to five (5) minutes to argue their case against removal, followed by a rebuttal of up to five (5) minutes by the initiator. There shall be a questioning period of up to thirty (30) minutes. An office shall be declared vacant upon an affirmative vote of a majority of voting members. An immediate election may be held per Article IV, Section C, Subsection 3.
Subsection 3 – Vacancy
Should any officer resign or fail to attend three general meetings in a row or Executive Board meetings without cause or approval, the Executive Board shall declare that office vacant and appoint a successor to complete the unexpired term. The membership shall approve any appointment at the next general meeting via election. Voting shall be by secret ballot with a majority of those members in good standing present required to elect.
ARTICLE V – GENERAL MEETINGS
Section A – Frequency
There shall be a minimum of six general meetings each calendar year. The President shall call other meetings. Such notice shall specify the meeting’s time, date, and location and describe the event.
Section B – Quorum
A quorum at any general meeting shall be ten percent (10%) of all members in good standing or ten (10) members in good standing, whichever number is smaller. A quorum at an endorsing or election meeting shall be fifteen percent (15%) of all members in good standing, or twelve members (12), whichever number is smaller.
Section C – Parliamentary Authority and Publication of Code of Conduct
These bylaws and the most recent edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the organization in all cases not provided for by law or by these bylaws.
The Code of Conduct shall be distributed to all members and shall be available at all meetings.
Section D – Notices
At least ten (10) days prior to a general meeting at which the following items will be discussed and voted upon, a meeting notice must be provided to each member in good standing:
- Club elections, removals, and filling of vacancies
- Proposed amendments to bylaws
- Proposed resolutions
- Endorsements of candidates or ballot measures
ARTICLE VI – EXECUTIVE BOARD
Section A – Function
The Executive Board shall carry out business on behalf of the FDC between general meetings in a manner consistent with actions taken at the general meetings, approve all expenditures, and perform any other duties provided for in these bylaws.
Section B – Composition
The Executive Board shall be composed of all elected officers and committee chairs. Appointed officers shall be non-voting ex-officio members of the Executive Board.
Section C – Appointed Officers
The President may appoint a non-voting parliamentarian and any other non-voting officers as required for the general well-being of the organization. Appointed officers may be removed from office per Article IV, Section D.
Section D – Meetings
The Executive Board shall meet at least once a month at the call of the President. Special meetings may be called by a majority of the elected club officers at any time. A majority of elected officers members of the Executive Board shall constitute a quorum. Notice of all regular Executive Board meetings shall be given at least 48 hours in advance.
ARTICLE VII – STANDING COMMITTEES
The Executive Board may create committees and shall be filled by appointment and/or self-nomination with a minimum of three members to constitute a committee quorum. Each committee shall select a chair annually in February. Committees shall meet at the committee chair’s call at least once bi-monthly. Committee chairs may be removed by the process outlined in Section IV, Subsection 1.
The standing committees for this organization are:
- Communications Committee
- Precinct Captains Committee
- Finance Committee
- Political Action Committee
ARTICLE VIII – CANDIDATE ENDORSEMENTS
Section A – Overview
FDC may endorse any ballot measure by a sixty percent (60%) vote. Only registered Democrats shall be considered for endorsement. Each candidate seeking the endorsement of the Fontana Democratic Club shall be mailed or provided via email, a copy of the Code of Conduct. All candidates seeking the endorsement of the FDC shall affirm in writing that they have read and agreed to abide by the Code of Conduct. The endorsement vote shall take place at a general meeting.
Section B – Interview Committee
An interview committee shall be convened and coordinated by the Vice President, composed of at most five (5) members appointed by the Vice President and confirmed at a club meeting. A majority of the interview committee members should, but are not required to, be registered to vote within the geographic area of the office. The committee shall approve a uniform set of interview questions for each candidate. It is the responsibility of the candidate to respond to a request for an interview. No member of the interview committee may be a candidate or serving as a campaign staffer. The interview committee shall recommend a slate of candidates to the club for endorsement. The membership may recommend alternative candidates for endorsement with a majority vote of members present at the endorsement meeting. Recommendations shall be to endorse, not endorse, or no consensus. Endorsement threshold is a sixty percent (60%) vote.
Section C – Financial Contributions
FDC may financially support candidates endorsed by the club. The Executive Board shall determine all financial contributions of $300.00 or less. The members shall approve financial contributions over $300.00 by a majority vote.
ARTICLE IX – CONFLICT OF INTEREST
A member of this organization may not vote on nor name a motion concerning the endorsement of a candidate or ballot measure if:
- The member is a candidate for the public office under consideration; or,
- The member is a paid employee or independent contractor of the controlled committee of a candidate for the office under consideration; or,
- The member is an employee who serves or works in a paid employment at the pleasure of a person standing for election to the office under consideration provided, however, that nothing in this rule shall preclude any person serving on a non-salaried basis as an appointee to a public panel, board, or commission from voting on such a recommendation for endorsement.
ARTICLE X – AFFILIATION
FDC is officially chartered with the San Bernardino County Democratic Central Committee (SBCDCC). As a chartered club, the club shall comply with the bylaws of the SDCDCC and CDP that apply to chartered clubs.
ARTICLE XI – AMENDMENTS
A two-thirds vote may amend these bylaws at a general meeting after such amendment has been presented at the preceding general meeting and notice has been provided as specified in Article V, Section 4 of these bylaws.
The Executive Board may establish rules to allow for amendment to these bylaws by electronic means, including by internet voting of members entitled to vote. These rules must provide for reasonable access to voting, the confidentiality and security of such voting process and to ensure that the provisions for notice, majority approval and the voting period are no less than those established for bylaw amendments at meetings in these bylaws.
ARTICLE XII – ADOPTION
These bylaws shall become effective immediately upon their adoption and shall be the organization’s governing rules.
These bylaws were approved during a voting period of five (5) days vote which concluded on March 26, 2023.
Secretary _____________________________ Date __________
The California Democratic Party (CDP), the San Bernardino County Democratic Central Committee (SBCDCC) and the Fontana Democratic Club (FDC) are committed to providing a welcoming, respectful, friendly, safe, supportive, and harassment-free environment for members, employees, and all others associated with the CDP, SBCDCC, and FDC.
The FDC expects all leaders, members, employees, and others associated with the FDC to act professionally, respecting the personal rights and dignities of all individuals involved with the party so as to create a productive, inclusive environment for all. All individuals should feel welcome and safe within the FDC , regardless of their sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, pregnancy, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, ancestry, religion, creed, age, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, military or veteran status, body size, domestic violence victim status, or any other legally protected classifications.
The FDC’s behavior standards are not limited to FDC meetings. Harassment will not be tolerated at any and all events sponsored by or affiliated with the CDP, SBCDCC or FDC, as well as in FDC-related calls, texts, emails, and social media like Facebook, Instagram, and SnapChat.
The FDC will not tolerate harassment—that is, disrespectful or unprofessional conduct based on any of the protected categories listed above. Prohibited harassment can be verbal (such as slurs, jokes, insults, epithets, gestures, or teasing based on the protected categories listed above), visual (such as the posting or distribution of offensive posters, symbols, cartoons, drawings, computer displays, or emails based on the protected categories listed above), or physical (such as physically threatening another person, blocking someone’s way, touching private parts, making physical contact in an unwelcome manner, etc.).
The FDC will not tolerate sexual harassment, that is, harassment based on sex or conduct of a sexual nature, which includes harassment based on sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related medical conditions), gender, gender identity or gender expression. Prohibited sexual harassment may include all of the actions described above as harassment, as well as other unwelcome sex-based conduct, such as unwelcome or unsolicited sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, conversations regarding sexual activities, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Sexually harassing conduct need not be motivated by sexual desire and may include situations that began as reciprocal relationships, but that later cease to be reciprocal.
The FDC prohibits quid pro quo sexual harassment, such as when submission to sexual conduct is made explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s membership in the party, appointment to committee, leadership, or other role within the FDC ; or submission to or rejection of sexual conduct by an individual is used as the basis for decisions affecting that individual.
The FDC prohibits the creation of a hostile environment, that is, conduct that creates an intimidating, hostile or otherwise offensive environment, including but not limited to: unwelcome sexual advances, flirtation, teasing, sexually suggestive or obscene letters, invitations, notes, emails, voicemails or gifts; sex, gender or sexual orientation-related comments, slurs, jokes, remarks or epithets; leering, obscene or vulgar gestures or making sexual gestures; displaying or distributing sexually suggestive or derogatory objects, pictures, cartoons, or posters or any such items; impeding or blocking movement, unwelcome touching or assaulting others; any abusive yelling or screaming, other verbal threats, or disrespectful language (in any form) directed at a person; any sexual advances that are unwelcome as well as reprisals or threats after a negative response to sexual advances; and conduct or comments consistently targeted at one gender, even if the content is not sexual.
The examples above are just that—examples. In general, any conduct listed above or that is based on the protected classifications listed above that could interfere with an individual’s participation in the FDC or could create an offensive environment will be considered harassment in violation of this code of conduct. This is the case even if the offending individual did not mean to be offensive. It is essential that we all be sensitive to the feelings of others.
The FDC takes very seriously its responsibility to provide all members with a welcoming, respectful, and safe environment and urges any member who feels uncomfortable, unwelcome, or unsafe to report harassment (of themselves or observed with respect to others) to a member of the Executive Board as soon as possible. Retaliation for reporting harassment or discrimination, or participating in an investigation with respect to harassment or discrimination, is prohibited.
Retaliation may include, but is not limited to, exclusion from meetings or committees, ostracism, badmouthing, or other conduct that may limit engagement with the FDC, or that would be reasonably likely to deter a reasonable FDC member from reporting harassment or participating in a harassment investigation.