National Women's Political Caucus of Washington

NWPC-WA Bylaws

 

Adopted 2013.

 

1                     National Women’s Political Caucus of Washington State

2                                                                    BYLAWS

3         

4                                                          ARTICLE  I  NAME

5          The name of this organization shall be the National Women’s Political Caucus of

6          Washington State (NWPC-WA), a multipartisan, not-for-profit membership

7          corporation incorporated in the state of Washington, which shall have a perpetual

8          existence and which shall not have issue or pay dividends.

9         

10                                            ARTICLE II  PURPOSES AND GOALS

11        The purpose of the NWPC-WA is to increase women’s participation in the political

12        process and to identify, recruit, train and support feminist women for election and

13        appointment to public office. While in pursuit of this goal, NWPC-WA will strive to

14        win equality for all women; to ensure reproductive freedom; to achieve quality

15        dependent care; and to eradicate violence, poverty and discrimination on any basis.

16

17                                                   ARTICLE III  MEMBERSHIP

18        (A) ELIGIBILITY. Membership in the NWPC-WA shall be open to any individual,

19        without regard to ethnicity, sex, national origin, age, handicap, economic status, or

20        sexual orientation, who supports the purposes and goals of the organization and for whom dues

21        have been remitted.

22        (B) MEMBERSHIP. A member of the NWPC-WA by definition shall be a member of

23        the National Women’s Political Caucus (NWPC), and a member of the local caucus

24        where residing or employed if one exists.

25       

26       

27         ARTICLE IV  LOCAL CAUCUSES AND ENDORSEMENT ACTION COMMITTEES (LEACS)

28        (A) PURPOSE. Members shall be organized into local caucuses or LEACs in order to

29        promote the purpose of the NWPC-WA and to take action at the local level.

30       

31        (B) DEFINITION.

32        1. Any group of ten or more persons may form a local Caucus. Locals shall be

33        chartered by the State Board of Directors in accordance with procedures established

34        by that body, along elective political boundaries or combination of such areas that

35        shall be declared at the time of credentialing.

36        2. Where insufficient resources exist to form a local Caucus, members may choose to

37        form a LEAC for the purposes of recruiting, identifying, endorsing and supporting

38        candidates for local elective and appointive offices.

39                    (a) A LEAC shall consist of a minimum of three Caucus members in good

40        standing and must be recognized by the state endorsement committee.

41                    (b) A LEAC shall function as a subcommittee of the State Endorsement

42        Committee for the purposes of endorsing local candidates and are bound by

43        the state endorsement policies.

44       

45        (C) CAUCUS BOUNDARIES.

46        1.         If a local caucus wishes to be credentialed within the established boundaries of an

47                    existing local, or if its boundaries encroach the boundaries of an existing local, it

48                    must petition that local for permission to form.

49                    (a) The petitioning group shall provide the existing Caucus Board of Directors

50                    with the following:

51                                1)  A definition of its proposed boundaries;

52                                2)  A list of the elective and appointed offices within its boundaries for which

53                    it wishes to be responsible in the endorsement process. This list may be

54                    amended annually.

55                    (b) If the petitioning group and the local Caucus cannot reach agreement, the two

56                    groups shall present their case to the State Board which shall resolve all such

57                    disputes.

58        2.         An existing Caucus may change its boundaries by petitioning the State Board,

59                    defining for the State Board its proposed new boundaries and responsibilities,

60                    providing that these new boundaries and responsibilities do not encompass any

61                    part or work of an existing local except by mutual consent.

62       

63                    (D) RESPONSIBILITIES. Local Caucus chapters shall:

64        1.         Comply with all federal and state laws governing political contributions, political

65                    activity, and candidate support;

66        2.         Refrain from any activity that would jeopardize the tax status of the NWPC, the

67                    NWPC Campaign Support Committee or NWPC-WA;

68        3.         Adopt bylaws that comply with state and national bylaws and the policy of the

69                    state and national Political Planning and Appointments Committee and/or

70                    Endorsement Committee, and file those bylaws and amendments thereto with

71                    NWPC-WA;

72        4.         Transmit official information, including lists of officers, meeting notices, meeting

73                    minutes, newsletters, bylaws, mode of operation and endorsements to NWPC-WA

74                    in timely fashion;

75        5.         Hold regular, open, publicly announced meetings at such locations as will

76                    accommodate the majority of their members;

77        6.         Develop and implement an affirmative action process which will assure

78                    membership representation of racial and ethnic minorities, as well as a

79                    multipartisan balance in the geographic area of the local Caucus. Caucuses failing

80                    to meet this requirement are subject to challenge, including loss of credentialing

81                    as a member caucus;

82        7.         Endorse and provide support for candidates for offices within their jurisdictions

83                    who support NWPC issues.

84        8.         Take no position in opposition to the national organization.

85                   

86                                                        ARTICLE V  STATE CAUCUS

87        (A) PURPOSE. Members shall be organized into a state Caucus in order to promote the

88        purpose of the NWPC and to take action at the state level.

89

90        (B) RECOGNITION STANDARDS. The state Caucus shall be organized in conformity

91        with recognition standards formulated by the NWPC Board of Directors and adopted

92        by the national convention. Only one state Caucus, as defined by the NWPC Board

93        of Directors, shall be recognized for the state of Washington.

94

95        (C) RESPONSIBILITIES. The NWPC-WA shall:

96        1.         Assist in organizing and developing, and provide assistance as required to local

97                    Caucus chapters;

98        2.         Adopt bylaws in compliance with the bylaws of the NWPC and the NWPC

99                    Political Planning and Appointment Committee, and file all such bylaws and

100                  amendments thereto from NWPC to local Caucus chapters;

101      3.         Transmit official communications from NWPC to local Caucus chapters;

102      4.         Maintain a body of at least thirty (30) NWPC-WA members in good standing;

103      5.         Endorse and provide support for candidates to statewide office, congressional

104                  office and local office where no local Caucus chapter exists;

105      6.         Select delegates and alternates to the NWPC biennial convention;

106      7.         Transmit to the NWPC dues and membership proof for each member;

107      8.         Credential local Caucus chapters;

108      9.         Establish state Caucus dues and assessments.

109                 

110                                          ARTICLE VI  FINANCIAL ADMINISTRATION

111      (A) FISCAL YEAR. The fiscal year of the NWPC-WA shall commence on the first day

112      of January of each year for national, state and local Caucuses.

113

114      (B) FINANCIAL SUPPORT. Financial responsibility for the work of the NWPC-WA as a

115      whole shall be assumed annually by the state and local Caucuses.

117     

117      (C) DUES. Members shall pay annual dues.

118      1.         Dues shall be of sufficient amount to cover national, state, and local dues per

119                  member payments established by a two-thirds vote of the State Board of

120                  Directors. 2. Dues are paid on an anniversary date.

121                 

122      (D) SCHOLARSHIPS. The local Caucus chapters and state Caucus will establish

123      policy, dependent on fiscal condition, to cover local and state scholarships.

124

125      (E) STANDING. Any state Caucus member whose name has been duly certified to the

126      NWPC and whose NWPC dues have been paid shall be a member in good standing.

127      Only members in good standing shall be eligible to serve as NWPC-WA officers,

128      members of the State Board of Directors, or voting delegates at NWPC-WA annual

129      membership meetings, or have any other privileges of memberships.

130                 

131                                                      ARTICLE VII  OFFICERS

132      (A) ENUMERATION AND ELECTION OF OFFICERS. The officers shall be the

133      President, two Vice Presidents (one Republican and one Democrat), Secretary,

134      Treasurer, and Endorsement Committee Chair. The President, one Vice President and

135      the Secretary will be elected during the business session of the annual membership

136      meeting held in odd years. The other Vice President, the Endorsement Committee

137      Chair and the Treasurer will be elected at the business session of the membership

138      meeting held in even years. All officers will assume their offices on January 1 of the

139      year following the annual membership meeting/annual meeting or within forty-five

140      (45) days, whichever is the shorter time period.

141

142      (B)TERMS. All officers will serve two year terms as mandated in Section A of this

143      Article.

144

145      (C) VACANCIES. A vacancy in the office of President shall be filled by the Vice

146      President elected in the same year as the President. Vacancies in other elected offices

147      shall be filled by the State Board of Directors.

148

149      (D) STATE BOARD OF DIRECTORS. All officers are voting members of the State

150      Board of Directors.

151

152      (E) ELIGIBILITY FOR STATE OFFICE. The State President must have served on the

153      State Board for at least one year.

154     

155      (F) ENDORSEMENT GUIDELINES FOR ELECTED OFFICERS.

156      1.         The State President, Vice Presidents and Candidate Endorsement Chair(s) shall

157                  refrain from lending their names, contributing money and/or publicly

158                  supporting candidates whose offices are to be considered in the state and local

159                  endorsement procedure until after the endorsement procedure is completed for

160                  that race.

161                 

162      2.         During their terms in office, the President, Vice Presidents and Candidate

163                  Endorsement Chair(s) shall not personally endorse any candidate whose

164                  opposition has been endorsed by the state and/or local caucuses.

165

166      (G) REMOVAL OF OFFICERS. An officer may be removed for cause by two-

167                  thirds vote of the total membership of the State Board provided notice of the

168                  pending vote has been sent to all members of the State Board and all local

169                  presidents at least thirty days prior to the meeting. Cause for the pending vote

170                  to remove shall be included in the notice.

171                 

172                                       ARTICLE VIII  DUTIES OF OFFICERS

173      (A) GENERAL DUTIES. State board members shall be responsible for all legal and

174      fiduciary decisions for the organization. Board members shall also be responsible

175      for fundraising for the organization.

176                 

177      (B) STATE PRESIDENT. The President shall:

178      1.         Serve as the executive officer of NWPC-WA and preside at all meetings of

179                  NWPC-WA;

180      2.         Act as official spokesperson for NWPC-WA;

181      3.         Chair the State Board of Directors meetings;

182      4.         Serve ex-officio on all committees of NWPC-WA, except the Nominating

183                  Committee;

184      5.         Establish other committees as may be deemed necessary, except otherwise

185                  provided in these bylaws;

186      6.         Execute contracts and other instruments authorized by the State Board of

187                  Directors;

188      7.         Ensure that NWPC-WA complies with all applicable federal and state laws

189                  governing political activity, political contributions, and candidate support, as

190                  determined by the legal opinion of independent council;

191      8.         Draft an annual budget in consultation with the treasurer to present to the

192                  Board prior to the biennial annual membership meeting;

193      9.         The President may delegate some of her functions to an Executive Director

194                  with the consent of the State Board.

195

196      (C) VICE PRESIDENTS. The Vice Presidents:

197      1.         In the absence of the President, preside at meetings and otherwise act for the

198                  President;

199      2.         Succeed to the office of President in the event of vacancy;

200      3          Serve as official spokesperson(s) for NWPC-WA upon request of the

201                  President;

202      4.         Serve as resource person(s) to state and local Caucuses;

203      5.         Serve on at least one standing committee;

204      6.         Perform other duties as may be assigned by the President.

205

206      (D) SECRETARY. The Secretary shall:

207      1.         Assume responsibility for issuance of all meeting notices of NWPC-WA and

208                  the State Board;

209      2.         Record and distribute minutes of all meetings of NWPC-WA and the State

210                  Board.

211      3.         Assume responsibility for maintenance and custody of the official NWPC-

212                  WA books, records, and files.

213      4.         Exercise the powers and perform such other duties as are usual to the office of

214                  Secretary;

215      5.         Perform such other duties as may be assigned by the President.

216

217      (E) TREASURER. The Treasurer shall:

218      1.         Assume responsibility for internal accounting procedures of NWPC-WA as

219                  authorized by the President or the State Board;

220      2.         Be responsible for receipt, custody and disbursement of all NWPC-WA

221                  monies, as authorized by the President or the State Board;

222      3.         Keep accurate account, as required by federal or state law, of monies received

223                  and paid out;

224      4.         Render monthly and annual financial reports for distribution to members of

225                  the State Board;

226      5.         Serve as a member of the Finance Committee;

227      6.         Prepare all federal, state, and local reporting forms, including public

228                  disclosure, and forward copies of all C-4s and related materials to the State

229                  Chair on dates that those forms are due;

230      7.         Exercise the powers and perform such other duties as are usual to the office of

231                  Treasurer;

232      8.         Perform such other duties related to finance as may be assigned by the

233                  President;

234      9.         Assure that the books of the Treasurer be audited annually by an accountant or

235                  approved bookkeeping service, or by a committee composed of three (3)

236                  members of NWPC-WA appointed by the President with the consent of the

237                  State Board;

238      10.       The Treasurer may delegate some of her functions to an accounting firm,

239                  bookkeeper, or CPA with the consent of the State Board.

240

241      (E) ENDORSEMENT COMMITTEE CHAIR. The Endorsement Committee Chair

242      shall:

243      1.         Carry out candidate endorsement procedure, including May’s List and other

244                  priority designations, in a timely fashion;

245      2.         Serve as chair of the PAC committee;

246      3.         Carry out other duties relating to the endorsement process as may be

247                  designated by the Chair.

248                 

249                               ARTICLE IX  ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING

250      (A) GOVERNANCE. The state Board of Directors shall hold at least one publicly

251      announced, open statewide meeting a year (Annual Meeting) that shall be the

252      governing body of NWPC-WA.

253

254      (B) TIME AND PLACE. The NWPC-WA Annual Meeting shall be held at a time and

255      place to be fixed by the state Board of Directors.

256

257      C) NOTICE. Not less than thirty (30) days notice of time and place shall be given in

258      written or electronic mail, and website to all members in good standing.

259

260      (D) SPECIAL MEETINGS. Special meetings of NWPC-WA may be called by the state

261      Board of Directors, or upon written request of twenty-five (25) percent of the

262      membership, upon a minimum of thirty days notice to the membership, to act upon

263      business brought by the state Board of Directors.

264

265      (E) QUORUM. Five (5) percent of the paid membership for that fiscal year shall

266      constitute a quorum. Each member present shall be entitled to one vote. Voting by

267      proxy shall not be allowed. A credentials committee composed of the Treasurer

268      and/or Membership Chairperson(s), or other designated member shall certify that a

269      quorum is present.

270

271      (F) ELECTION OF OFFICERS. The annual membership meeting shall elect NWPC-WA

272      officers.

273

274      (G) POLICIES. The annual membership meeting shall establish the policies of NWPC-

275      WA by receiving and acting upon resolutions brought before the body.

276

277      (H) BYLAWS AND OTHER BUSINESS. The annual membership meeting shall act upon

278      proposed amendments to the bylaws and conduct such other business as may be

279      brought before it.

280     

281      (I) ANNUAL BUDGET. The annual membership meeting shall adopt an annual budget.

282     

283                                          ARTICLE X  STATE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

284      (A) COMPOSITION.

285      1.         State officers;

286      2.         Local Caucus representatives.

287                  a. Chair or Vice Chair or elected representative of established local Caucus

288                  chapters;

289                  b. Local county Caucus contacts where no local Caucus exists.

290                  1) These persons must be working with members in their county to

291                  establish a local Caucus and/or promote the NWPC-WA and its work

292                  and policies in that county.

293                  2) Local contact persons must be approved by the state Board of Directors

294                  and serve a       two      one-year term.

295      3.         Committee Chairs;

296      4.         NWPC Board Representative;

297      5.         At-large members as appointed by the President and approved by a vote of the

298                  majority of the Board of Directors.

299                  1) There will be a maximum of 5 (five) At-large Board members;

300                  2) Each At-large Board member will serve on at least 1 (one) committee.

301

302      (B) LOCAL ALTERNATES. If a local chapter Chair or representative is unable to

303      attend a meeting of the state Board of Directors, then an alternate local chapter

304      steering committee or Board member may be designated to attend in accordance

305      with procedures established by the local Caucus chapter.

306                 

307      (C) AUTHORITY.

308      1.         The state Board of Directors shall conduct the business of the organization and

309                  carry out the duties and responsibilities of the organization, including establishing

310                  policies between annual membership meetings.

311      2.         The state Board of Directors shall implement policy established by the Annual

312                  membership meeting and approve programs and priorities consistent therewith,

313                  except that the Board may change policies and programs established by the

314      Annual membership meeting only in event of emergency provided that notice of

315      the proposed change shall be sent to local Caucus chapter chairs at least thirty

316      (30) days prior to the Committee meeting at which action is expected to be taken.

317      A two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Committee shall be required to adopt any such

318      change.

319

320      (D) EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE. An Executive Committee of the elected officers along

321      with two local caucus chairs elected by their peers shall conduct business as allowed

322      by policy set by the full Board of Directors. This committee will meet at the call of

323      the President between Board of Directors meetings. They shall not allot monies

324      outside the budget nor vote on endorsements nor mandate any actions affecting local

325      Caucus chapters. These functions are reserved to the full Board of Directors. Minutes

326      and agenda must be in a timely manner to the entire Board of Directors.

327     

328      (E) MEETINGS.

329      1.  The state Board of Directors shall meet at least once a quarter and for early

330      endorsement and regular endorsement in alignment with endorsement timelines.

331      2.  The meeting shall be rotated among the local Caucus chapters as much as

332      practicable.

333

334      (F) MEETING NOTICE. At least seven (7) days notice of a regular meeting and 24 hours

335      for an emergency meeting must be given to members unless otherwise specified in

336      these bylaws.

337

338      (G) QUORUM. No fewer than one member from a majority of the local Caucus chapters

339      shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. A majority of the votes

340      entitled to be cast by the members present shall be necessary for the adoption of any

341      matter voted on by the members, except where these bylaws require a different

342      number.

343     

344      (H) VOTING. Each member of the state Board of Directors shall have one (1) vote.

345     

346      (I) ABSENCES. Unexcused absences from three (3) meetings of the Board of Directors

347      shall be cause for removal of a member of the Committee.

348

349      (J) DUTIES  AND  RESPONSIBILITIES. The State Board of Directors shall:

350      1.         Fill vacancies in NWPC-WA offices as they occur by electing replacements,

351                  except as otherwise provided by these bylaws;

352      2.         Establish policies and procedures for chartering of local Caucus chapters by the

353                  Board of Directors;

354      3.         Select the location and dates of the NWPC-WA Annual membership meeting;

355      4.         Recommend the biennial budget to the Annual membership meeting;

356      5.         Establish policies and procedures for resolving disputes and grievances by

357                  members and local caucuses;

358      6.         Fill vacancies in NWPC board representatives.

359                 

360                                          ARTICLE XI  STANDING COMMITTEES

361      (A) NUMBER  OF  STANDING COMMITTEES. There shall be seven (7) standing

362      committees as follows:

363      1.         Political Action and Legislation;

364      2.         Membership and Outreach;

365      3.         Candidate Recruitment and Endorsement;

366      4.         Nominations;

367      5.         Bylaws and Procedures;

368      6.         Fundraising;

369      7.         Training and Education.

370

371      (B) COMPOSITION. The membership of the standing committees shall include at least

372      one (1) member from each local Caucus chapter, unless a local Caucus has not

373      submitted the name of its representative within sixty (60) days after the Annual

374      membership meeting. Additional members to standing committees may be appointed

375      by the State President. The chair of each standing committee who is not an elected

376      officer shall be appointed by the state President with the advice and consent of all the

377      state officers. The Nominations Committee shall elect its own chair.

378

379      (C) TERMS. The terms of committee members shall be concurrent with the terms of the

380      officers elected at the Annual membership meeting. The Endorsement Chair may

381      advise and present additional endorsement committee members to the President after

382      his/her election.

383

384      (D) MEETINGS. Standing committees shall meet at the call of their chairs, or upon

385      written request of one third (1/3) of the committee members.

386

387      (E) REPORTS. All Standing committees shall report through their chairs to the State

388      President, to the State Board of Directors, and to the NWPC-WA Annual membership

389      meeting.

390

391      (F) DUTIES. The State Board of Directors shall determine the duties of the standing

392      committees.

393                 

394                                          ARTICLE XIII  PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY

395      Except as otherwise provided in these bylaws, Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly

396      Revised, shall govern the proceedings of all meetings of the NWPC-WA and its

397      committees.

398

399                  ARTICLE XIV APPOINTMENT AND DUTIES OF THE NWPC BOARD REPRESENTATIVE

400      The state Board of Directors shall appoint as many representatives to the National

401      Board of Directors as the Washington chapter is allocated based on membership.

402      Washington state national Board Representative(s) shall attend National Board

403      meetings and represent the interests of the Washington state chapter of the Caucus at

404      those meetings. They shall report to the Washington state chapter Board of Directors

405      relevant information from the national organization.

406

407                                          ARTICLE XV  AMENDMENT TO THESE BYLAWS

408     

409      (A) These bylaws may be amended by NWPC-WA, at an Annual membership meeting,

410      by a majority of the delegates voting, a quorum being present, provided that a copy of

411      the proposed amendment(s) shall have been delivered to each member in written or

412      electronic mail, and website, not less than thirty (30) days prior to the Annual

413      membership meeting at which the action is to be taken. Provided further that, in

414      relation to any federal, state, or local legislation governing NWPC-WA legal and/or

415      tax status, the state Board of Directors shall be empowered to make such amendments

416      as are necessary to retain legal compliance and to project the effectiveness of the

417      NWPC-WA in pursuing its goals and objectives.

418     

419      (B) Changes mandated by NWPC bylaws will be brought to the first statewide meeting

420      following the NWPC convention. If a statewide meeting is not held within three (3)

421      months of the NWPC convention, the membership will be informed of any mandated

422      items. Following a thirty (30) day notice the state Board of Directors will be allowed

423      to take action.

424     

425                                                      ARTICLE XV: DISSOLUTION

426      In the event of the dissolution of NWPC-WA, assets remaining after discharge of all

427      liabilities shall be distributed to an organization having similar objectives. Determination

428      of such distribution shall be made by the State Board.

429

430      Revised and ratified by the membership November 1980, May 1983, March 1985,

431      October 1985, 1987, 1989, 1990, 1993, January 1997, January 2001, 2003, 2004,

432      2005, 2008, 2010, January 2011, January 2013