Proposed By-law Amendments

The following four proposed amendments to the LWV-VA Bylaws are offered by and have the support of the LWV-VA Board.

Amendments require a two-thirds vote of convention delegates.

Current LWV-VA Bylaws can be found here.

Note that only specific articles and sections being amended are listed below. A rationale for each amendment is also provided. The entire revised LWV-VA Bylaws, as proposed, follows this Description.

The proposed changes are written using the following format:

▪ Brackets [ ] denote words to be deleted.

▪ CAPS denote words to be added.

 

BYLAWS PROPOSAL #1. Add DEI Policy (mandated by LWVUS policy; for information only)

ARTICLE II. Purposes and [Policy] POLICIES

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SEC. 3. DIVERSITY, EQUITY & INCLUSION POLICY. THE LEAGUE IS FULLY COMMITTED TO ENSURE COMPLIANCE WITH DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION, IN PRINICIPLE AND IN PRACTICE.

Rationale: LWV-VA is an organization fully committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in principle and in practice. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are central to the organization’s current and future success in engaging all individuals, households, communities, and policy makers in creating a more perfect democracy. It is a fundamental value of the organization and belongs alongside our hallmark of nonpartisanship.

 

BYLAWS PROPOSAL #2. Add Student Membership Category (matches LWVUS policy)

Article III. Membership.

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Sec. 2. Types of Membership.

  1. Voting Members. Persons at least 16 years of age who join the League shall be voting members of local Leagues, state Leagues and of the LWVUS; (1) those who live within an area of a local League may join that League or any other local League; (2) those who reside outside the area of any local League may join a local League or shall be state members-at-large; (3) those who have been members of the League for 50 years or more shall be life members excused from the payment of dues[.]; AND (4) THOSE WHO ARE STUDENTS ARE DEFINED AS INDIVIDUALS ENROLLED EITHER AS FULL OR PART TIME WITH AN ACCREDITED INSTITUTION.

 

Rationale: LWV-VA wants to follow LWVUS lead to look for ways to increase and diversify its membership, and this is one tool to help achieve that goal.

 

BYLAWS PROPOSAL #3. Add New Term, Leagues-at-Large (matches new LWVUS term)

Article V. Board of Directors

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Sec. 3. Powers.

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  1. The board shall accept responsibility delegated to it by the board of directors of the LWVUS for the organization and development of local Leagues; guidance of and cooperation with Inter-League Organizations (hereinafter referred to as ILOs); promotion of League program; financial development; and such other matters as the national board may delegate to it. It may form [member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE where circumstances dictate such organization and shall adopt rules and procedures for the formation and operation of such [units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE.

Article VI. Local Leagues, ILOs and [Member-at-Large Units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE

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Sec. 3. [Member-at-Large Units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE.

  1. The state board may authorize the establishment of [member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE in communities where circumstances dictate such organization. [Member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE shall fulfill state League requirements.
  2. In the event of recurrent failure of a [member-at-large unit] LEAGUE-AT-LARGE to fulfill these requirements, the state board may withdraw recognition from the [unit] LEAGUE-AT-LARGE. All funds held by a [member-at-large unit] LEAGUE-AT-LARGE from which recognition has been withdrawn shall be paid to the state League after other obligations have been met.

Article VII. Convention

Sec. 1. Place, Date, and Call. A convention of the LWV- VA shall be held biennially in the odd-numbered years at a time and place to be determined by the board of directors. A first call to convention shall be sent to the presidents of local Leagues and ILOs and to the chairs of [member-at- large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE at least six weeks before the date fixed in said call. Thereafter the board may advance or postpone the opening date of the convention by not more than two weeks. A final call giving the exact time and place of the convention shall be sent to the presidents of local Leagues and ILOs and to the chairs of [member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE at least thirty days before convention.

Sec. 2. Composition. The convention shall consist of:

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  1. the presidents of local Leagues and chairs of [member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE or an alternate in the event the president or chair is unable to attend;

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Sec. 4. Representation. The members of the LWV-VA who are organized into local Leagues or [member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE, in the Commonwealth of Virginia, shall be entitled to voting representation in the convention as follows: the members in each local League or [member-at-large unit] LEAGUE-AT-LARGE shall be entitled to two delegates; when a local League or [member-at-large unit] LEAGUE-AT-LARGE membership reaches 25 voting members, it shall be entitled to one additional delegate; thereafter one additional delegate shall be authorized for each additional twenty-five voting members or major fraction thereof belonging to said local League or [member-at-large unit] LEAGUE-AT-LARGE.

Article VIII. Council

Sec. 1. Place, Date and Call. A meeting of the council shall be held biennially, approximately twelve months after each convention at a time and place to be determined by the board of directors. A formal call giving the exact time and place of the council shall be sent to the presidents of local Leagues and ILOs and to the chairs of [member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE at least six weeks before a council meeting. In the event of an emergency, the board may call a special council meeting.

Sec. 2. Composition. The council shall consist of the presidents of local Leagues and the chairs of [member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE or an alternate in the event the president or chair is unable to attend; one delegate chosen by each local League and [member-at-large unit] LEAGUE-AT-LARGE; the members of the state board; one delegate chosen by the board of each ILO.

Article IX. Nominations and Elections

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Sec. 2. Suggestions for Nominations. The nominating committee shall request suggestions for nominations through the president of each local League and ILO and chair of each [member-at-large unit] LEAGUE-AT-LARGE by advising them of the offices to be filled and the address to which suggestions are to be sent. Any LWV-VA member may submit suggestions to the nominating committee.

Sec. 3. Report of Nominating Committee. The report of the nominating committee containing its nominations for officers, directors and the chair and two members of the next nominating committee shall be sent to the presidents of local Leagues and ILOs and to the chairs of [Member-at- Large Units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE at least four weeks before convention. The report of the nominating committee shall be presented to the convention at its first session. Nominations may be made from the floor immediately thereafter, provided the consent of the nominee has been obtained.

Article X. Principles and Program

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Sec 3. Program Adoption.

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  1. The board shall consider all properly submitted recommendations and formulate a proposed program, which shall be sent to the presidents of local Leagues and ILOs and to the chairs of [members-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE at least four weeks before convention or, if the board recommends, the council.

Article XII. Financial Administration

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Sec. 3. Budget. The board of directors shall submit to the convention and council for adoption a budget for the next fiscal year, specifying the per member payment rate. A copy of the budget shall be sent to the presidents of local Leagues and ILOs and to the chairs of [member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE at least four weeks before the convention or council. A budget shall be adopted by a majority vote of the convention or council.

Article XIV. Amendments

These bylaws may be amended at any convention or council by a two-thirds vote provided that the proposed amendment was submitted to the state board at least three months before convention by a local League board or was proposed by the state board. The state board shall send all such proposed amendments to the presidents of local Leagues and ILOs and to the chairs of [member-at-large units] LEAGUES-AT-LARGE at least four weeks before the convention or council at which they will be considered.

Rationale: LWV-VA wants to follow LWVUS lead to use the new term, Leagues-at-Large for the current term, member-at-large units. 

 

BYLAWS PROPOSAL #4. Add Convention and Council Voting Representation for Certain Members at Large (note, changes below also include the proposed Leagues-at-Large term)

 Article VII. Convention

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Sec. 2. Composition. The convention shall consist of:

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  1. DELEGATES, CHOSEN BY THE BOARD OF THE LWV-VA, TO REPRESENT THE MEMBERS-AT-LARGE NOT ORGANIZED IN A LEAGUE-AT-LARGE, IN THE NUMBER PROVIDED IN SEC. 4 OF THIS ARTICLE.

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Sec. 4. Representation. The members of the LWV-VA who are organized into local Leagues or Leagues-at-Large, AND MEMBERS-AT-LARGE NOT ORGANIZED IN A LEAGUE-AT-LARGE, in the Commonwealth of Virginia, shall be entitled to voting representation in the convention as follows: the members in each local League or League-at-Large shall be entitled to two delegates; when a local League membership reaches 25 voting members, it shall be entitled to one additional delegate; thereafter one additional delegate shall be authorized for each additional twenty-five voting members or major fraction thereof belonging to said local League. THE MEMBERS-AT-LARGE NOT ORGANIZED IN A LEAGUE-AT-LARGE SHALL BE ENTITLED TO ONE DELEGATE; WHEN THE NUMBER OF MEMBERS-AT-LARGE REACHES 25 VOTING MEMBERS, THEY SHALL BE ENTITLED TO ONE ADDITIONAL DELEGATE; THEREAFTER ONE ADDITIONAL DELEGATE SHALL BE AUTHORIZED FOR EACH ADDITIONAL 25 VOTING MEMBERS-AT-LARGE NOT ORGANIZED IN A LEAGUE-AT-LARGE. The official membership count shall be determined by national office records of voting members as reported to the national office in the -membership count of the year in which the convention is held.

Article VIII. Council

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Sec. 2. Composition. The council shall consist of the presidents of local Leagues and the chairs of Leagues-at-Large or an alternate in the event the president or chair is unable to attend; one delegate chosen by each local League and League-at-Large; the members of the state board; one delegate chosen by the board of each ILO; AND ONE DELEGATE CHOSEN BY THE BOARD OF THE LWV-VA TO REPRESENT THE MEMBERS-AT-LARGE NOT ORGANIZED IN A LEAGUE-AT-LARGE.

Rationale:  The LWV-VA believes that all Members-at-Large should have voting representation at the Convention and Council, to ensure that all views are represented throughout Virginia as decisions are made during these important events.

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