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Downriver Green By-Laws

By-Laws for the Downriver Greens as adopted February 2001

By-Laws of the Downriver Greens

1. Name

1.1 The name of this local chapter of the Green Party of Michigan is The Downriver Greens.

2. Purpose and Values

2.1a The purpose of this organization is to work towards a "Green" society as represented by the Ten Key Values of the international Green movement. These values are as follows:

Ecological Wisdom, Grassroots Democracy, Social Justice, Nonviolence,
Community Based Economics, Decentralization, Respect for Diversity,
Gender Equity, Personal and Global Responsibility, Future Focus

2.1b The Downriver Greens (DRG) will work to manifest the Ten Key Values in political law-making and social movement decisions made on issues affecting Wayne/Monroe Counties,Ecorse Creek Watershed, River Rouge Watershed, Huron River and Raisin River Watersheds, the State of Michigan, the Nation and the World. As new locals are formed in these areas, areas of concern shall be scaled back to more definite locales.

2.2 DRG will use a consensus model of decision making wherever possible as outlined in section (8). Where percentages are given as voting guidelines in these bylaws, it is only intended as a fallback safeguard when reasonable efforts to achieve consensus have failed.

2.3 The Downriver Greens is a local chapter of The Greens / Green Party USA. The Green Party of Michigan is an affiliated state party within The Greens / Green Party USA. The Green Party of Michigan is an affiliated state party within the Association of State Green Parties.

2.4 DRG will adopt an annual platform to address and take action on issues of local, regional, national and international concerns as deemed appropriate by the local's membership.

3. Membership Rights and Responsibilities

3.1 To be a member of DRG, a person must sign a statement agreeing to support the Ten Key Values, and must endorse generally the local party platform as developed, updated and adopted by the membership each year. Members must also abide by the decision making process of the local chapter.

3.2 Membership is open to anyone regardless of age, race, gender, creed, national origin, sexual orientation, appearance, or physical ability.

3.3 To be a member in good standing, annual dues must be paid and current to the state party. (Currently $20 per year). Local dues will be forwarded to us from the State Dues paid by local members.

3.4 Active members must satisfy section 3.3 and must have attended at least two (2) regular local chapter meetings or one (1) state level meeting in the past four months.

3.5 A member in good standing may vote at any meeting of the local chapter, based on the principle of one person one vote. Proxy votes are acceptable if accompanied by a signed letter of authorization and if acceptable to a simple majority of those in attendance at the chapter meeting where the vote is held.

3.6 The Downriver Greens constitute a division of the Wayne County Green Committee for the purposes of nominating candidates for political office under Michigan law. Final action on the Wayne County Green Committee is pending as of this time.

3.7 Any member of the local chapter may nominate her/himself or another member for any open office of the local chapter as outlined in section (5).

3.8 Any member of the local chapter may nominate her/himself or another member for any open committee position of the local chapter as outlined in section (6).

3.9 The membership of an individual in DRG and in the Green Party of Michigan can be revoked for failing to abide by the Ten Key Values or for disrupting the work of DRG members or committees. Revocation of membership is achieved by a 75% vote of the local chapter's membership attending a regular meeting or by a 75% vote of the members attending a Green Party of Michigan state meeting. Any individual must be informed, in writing, of the potential revocation of membership at least two weeks prior to the vote and have a chance to present his or her defense at the meeting when the vote is held.

4. Voting

4.1 Members in good standing of a local chapter may vote on Local issues as well as state issues at general state meetings and may serve as Green Party of Michigan Officers as outlined in Green Party of Michigan bylaws.

5. Structure

5.1 The Downriver Greens shall have, as a minimum, two officer chairpersons for the local chapter.

5.2 Local chapter meetings and committee meetings should be set by DRG members at a time and location generally understood by all members.

5.3 The DRG co-chairs will collect agenda items from chapter members and publish the agenda for regular local chapter meetings. Co-chairs will also decide on issues needing expedient attention between meetings, monitor progress of standing and ad-hoc committees, ensure DRG administrative tasks are attended, and act as representatives to the media on local issues.

5.4 All decisions concerning policy, finance, and objectives shall require a vote of at least 60% of the membership present at any official local meeting.

5.5 The membership of the Downriver Greens may create any office position as needed with a 75% member vote at any official local meeting.

6. Officers

6.1 One co-chair will act as Treasurer of DRG, and the other co-chair will act as Secretary. Co-chairs will be composed of one female and one male to maintain gender equity in the leadership. Co-chairs shall be the spokespersons for DRG if other members already appointed to this role cannot fulfill this responsibility.

6.2 Candidates for any DRG office must meet the following criteria: a) A candidate must embrace the Ten Key Values, sign a statement declaring fidelity to these values and use these values as a basis for their political decision-making. b) A candidate must maintain active membership in good standing in DRG. c) Candidates chosen by DRG for any political office must be ratified at a county caucus to ensure they meet legal requirements. d) A Downriver Green or Green Party of Michigan candidate or political office holder shall not be a registered member of any other political party.

6.3 Any member of the DRG that meets the requirements in sections (5.1 and 5.2) may nominate her/himself or another member for any open office in the local chapter. Any member may assume an office after achieving at least 75% majority of votes among members present at a local meeting.

6.4 All officer positions shall expire at the end of the first local chapter meeting in December of each year.

6.5 If a DRG officer's position is vacated in between official meetings, the other chairperson of the local chapter may make a temporary appointment to the vacated office only after obtaining agreement with each remaining local chapter officer by voice or email. A temporary appointment shall remain valid until the next regular local meeting where a new officer can be nominated.

6.6 If any officer is found to be in contempt of the goals of DRG, or The Green Party of Michigan, a recall may be invoked by any two DRG members by notifying all local chapter members at least 3 days (72 hours) before an official DRG meeting. Reasons for the proposed revocation of officer status must be clearly stated in the agenda of the meeting and the officer must be given adequate time to present his or her defense at the meeting. A 75% majority of voting members present at the meeting is required to revoke officer status of a member.

6.7 Any DRG member who has been elected to the Green Party of Michigan's National Delegate Pool may represent DRG as a delegate to the Green National Committee (GNC) of the Greens / Green Party USA.

7. Committees

7.1 Committees of the local chapter are formed by a simple majority vote at any DRG meeting.

7.2 Committees must have at least two chair positions available for nominees to fill. Committee chairs are responsible for scheduling, announcing, facilitating and recording committee meetings.

7.3 Any member of the local chapter may nominate her/himself or another member for any open committee position of the local chapter. A nominee receives the right to join a standing committee when his or her nomination is announced and 'seconded' by another DRG member attending the meeting. A nominee maintains the right to refuse the nomination. Committee members have the right to access and participate in all committee discussions and vote in all committee decisions based on the principle of one person one vote.

7.4 Any committee member who intends to vacate a committee position must notify all committee members and one DRG chair of plans for leaving the committee as soon as possible

7.5 Ad-hoc committees shall be formed for achieving specific goals set forth at their formation. Ad-hoc committees must be given a specific agenda to focus on, a time frame with deadline(s) for accomplishing the goal(s) and a date for dissolution.

7.6 Standing committees remain standing until dissolved by a simple majority vote at any official meeting.

7.7 The current recognized committees of the DRG are: Media/fundraising, Social Conscience, Labor/Workers Rights, and Health Care/Senior Care Committees.

8. Amendments

8.1 These bylaws may be amended on a 75% vote by members present at a regular local meeting where a quorum of at least 25% of the local's membership is present. A written copy of adopted bylaws (with any current amendments) will be maintained by the co-chairs.