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Revisions to MMPCDC By-Laws Proposed for Adoption on March 20, 2019

Written on:February 18, 2019
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An ad hoc MMPCDC By-Laws Review and Update Committee, including Co-Chair Cheryl Macias, Outreach Chair Gretchen Almstead, and Past Co-Chair Allen Muchnick, has recently reviewed MMPCDC’s current By-Laws and has proposed extensive updates.

The proposed By-Law revisions were presented for discussion by the membership at MMPCDC’s February 27th membership meeting, with a vote on adoption planned for MMPCDC’s March 20th membership meeting. In response to a member’s comments received at, and subsequent to, our February 27th meeting, the proposal was further modified. The latest proposed revision is linked below.

Three relevant documents for these proposed By-Law revisions are linked below:

The most substantial proposed change to the By-Laws is the addition of a new Article IX that outlines procedures for MMPCDC to endorse (not nominate) candidates for either partisan or non-partisan (i.e., school board) elected office. The language for this new Article was closely adapted from a similar, recently adopted amendment to the Prince William County Democratic Committee’s by-laws. Because the various procedures for nominating diverse candidates for elected office are already prescribed in great detail by Virginia election laws and regulations and by the Democratic Party of Virginia Party Planthe MMPCDC By-Laws do not explicitly discuss nomination procedures, which we ordinarily use.

A second proposed change to the By-Laws, in Section 6.1, concerns the composition, authority, and duties of the MMPCDC Leadership Committee, formerly called the Executive Committee. Currently, our By-Laws do not authorize the Executive Committee to take any time-sensitive executive actions, only to hold discussions and recommend actions for the full Committee.

Article III (Membership) was revised to 1) clarify, strengthen, and simplify our member-election procedures (Sections 3.1, 3.2, and 3.4); 2) remove two unnecessary sentences related to membership diversity (Section 3.3); 3) clarify quorum determinations during the final nine months of each biennium (Section 3.5); and 4) add the relatively new Executive Director for the Prince William County and the Manassas & Manassas Park Cities Democratic Committees as an ex-officio member of MMPCDC (Section 3.7).

Proposed revisions to Article IV (Officers) affirms the Democratic Party ban on secret ballots (Section 4.1) and modifies a few of the duties of our Secretary (Section 4.4) and Treasurer (Section 4.5).

Lastly, Article XI was revised to clarify how proposed future By-Law Amendments should be presented before adoption.

In addition to the substantive changes described above, the proposed By-Laws update adds unique section numbers and headings to each section of the By-Laws, to make the document easier to read and reference. Finally, the By-Laws were closely reviewed to ensure that various references, terms, capitalization, and font sizes and styles are accurate and/or consistent throughout the document.

Comments on the proposed By-Laws may be submitted via email to mmpcdc@gmail.com. To be considered for the March 20th MMPCDC membership meeting, all written comments should be submitted by Monday, March 18.