Proposed 2018-2019 ByLaws

Members of the CDC,


The Proposed ByLaws will be presented at the

General Meeting

Thursday, April 12, 7:15 pm

Rivercrest Center

1001 Riverwalk Parkway

Chesapeake, VA 23320.


In the interest of streamlining

the Bylaws presentation,

we will ask only for changes or additions.

After consideration by the Committee,

there will be a vote to adopt the Bylaws in their entirety.


Changes and additions are included in and listed after the Bylaws.


The Bylaws and a printable PDF version are available below.


If you have any questions or comments,

please email  by Tuesday, April 10th

to receive a response before the meeting.


Proposed Draft as of March 17, 2018


Adopted April __, 2018




The name of this organization shall be the Chesapeake Democratic Committee, hereafter referred to as “the CDC.”




Section 1. Organizational Authority
The CDC is organized under the authority of and in accordance with the Code of Virginia and the Democratic Party of Virginia Party Plan currently in effect. Nothing contained in these bylaws is intended to conflict with either the Code of Virginia or the Democratic Party Plan.  If any such conflict should occur between these bylaws and the Code of Virginia and/or the Party Plan, then the Code of Virginia or the Party Plan, as the case may be, shall have precedence.


Link to the Democratic Party of Virginia Party Plan:


Section 2. Operating Authority
All activities of the CDC shall be conducted in accordance with the relevant provision of the Party Plan. This CDC will exist until December 2019, when it will dissolve and be reorganized in caucus.


Section 3. Purpose
The purpose of the CDC shall be:

a) To conduct the affairs of the Democratic Party of Virginia in the city of Chesapeake.
b) To actively encourage voter registration and voting by qualified residents of the city of Chesapeake.

Section 3. Purpose (cont.)
The CDC shall adhere to, and implement, the policies and platform contained in the national and state Democratic Party Platforms.

The CDC, with an awareness of the concerns of individuals and particular constituent groups, communities or neighborhoods, based upon race, sex, age, color, creed, national origin, religion, ethnic identity, sexual orientation, economic status, disability, shall encourage every resident who believes in the principles of the Democratic Party to participate in the local, state and national election process. What joins us is more fundamental than what differentiates us.


Section 4. Reorganizational Caucus
The Virginia Democratic Party Plan requires that an election by caucus to reorganize the CDC be accomplished between December 1st of odd-numbered years and January 15th of the following year. The date of the reorganization meeting must be communicated to the state party by November 15th of each odd-numbered year. The 2019 reorganization caucus will be held on Saturday, December 14.

a) All CDC members must reapply for membership.
b) Seven (7) days public advertisement for the caucus shall be given.

c) Refer to State Party Plan, Articles 8-9.


Section 5. Officer Elections
CDC officers will be elected at a CDC Executive Officer Election by the newly elected CDC members. 

a) Notice of this meeting shall be included in the public advertisement for the caucus. The officer election meeting will be on Saturday, December 14, 2019, following the adjournment of the caucus.
b) A temporary Chair will accept nominations for the CDC Chair from the floor, and will conduct a vote of CDC members. The newly-elected permanent CDC Chair will then take nominations from the floor and conduct voting for First Vice Chair,  Second Vice Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Financial Secretary, and Sergeant at Arms.



Section 1. Membership Eligibility
Every Chesapeake resident registered to vote who believes in the principles of the Democratic Party is eligible to be a member of the CDC.

a) New membership applications shall be submitted with annual dues of $25.00 to the Executive Committee, which shall review the application to verify membership eligibility. If ineligible, dues submitted with the application will be returned to the applicant with the reason for denial.
b) All current members shall have submitted dues of $25.00 from the Executive Committee prior to the April General Meeting. 

c) Eligible applicant names shall be submitted for election at the next General Meeting (or at the next Special Meeting if called for such a purpose). Applicants receiving a majority vote are elected to CDC membership.



Section 2. Dues
Annual renewal membership dues for 2019 are $25.00, to be paid no later than February 2019 General Meeting. 

Section 3. Good Standing
A member who has paid dues is considered to be a member in good standing. 

Section 4. Ex-Officio Members
Any person representing the City of Chesapeake by holding any national, state or local elective office, who at the time of his or her most recent election to the office shall have been elected as an officially designated candidate of the Democratic Party, shall be a CDC ex-officio member.  Any resident of the City of Chesapeake who serves as a member of the Democratic State Central Committee shall also be a CDC ex-officio member during the term of that person’s membership on the State Central Committee.  Ex-officio members shall not be subject to removal from the CDC by reason of their absences from CDC meetings.
Section 5. Attendance
Any member who, without notification to the Chair, is absent from three consecutive regular meetings may be removed from the CDC by the Executive Committee.  This section does not apply to public office holders.


Section 6. Support for Democratic Party Nominee
No member shall publicly support, endorse or assist a nominee who is opposing a Democratic nominee.  


Section 7. Participation
Members shall serve on committees or in another capacity to support the aims of the CDC as their skills and abilities dictate. 

Section 8. Removal
By a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote, the CDC may remove from both office and/or membership any person found guilty of neglect of any duty imposed upon him or her. The Member can be reinstated by attending a General Meeting.


Section 1. Chair
The duties of the Chair shall be:

a) To preside at all CDC meetings.
b) To administer and execute all rules adopted by the CDC. 
c) To appoint a CDC member to serve as Parliamentarian and Chief Information Officer, as well as any other position deemed appropriate.

d) To appoint Special committees as needed. 

e) To serve as an ex-officio member of all committees.

Section 2. First Vice Chair  
The duties of the First Vice Chair shall be:

a)  To preside at meetings in the absence of the Chair.
b)  To perform all duties delegated by the Chair.
c) To have all the authority of the Chair when the latter, for any cause, is unable to act.  
d) To assume the position of the Chair should the position become vacant.  

Section 3. Second Vice Chair
The duties of the  Second Vice Chair shall be: 

a) To preside in the absence of the Chair and the First Vice Chair.
b) To perform all duties delegated by the Chair.
c) To have all the authority of the Chair when both the Chair and First Vice Chair are, for any reason, unable to act.
d) To assume the position of First Vice Chair should the position become vacant.

Section 4. Secretary
The duties of the Secretary shall be:

a) To keep an accurate and permanent record of all the proceedings of the CDC and of the Executive Committee.
b) To make minutes available no later than one week after each meeting. 
c) To serve as custodian of the CDC records, except those financial records retained by the Treasurer. 
d) To keep a roster of members. 
e) To give proper notice of meetings, to maintain all official correspondence and to maintain the roll at all meetings.
f) To submit to State Party headquarters within five (5) days of his or her election the names, addresses, emails and telephone numbers of the officers and members of the CDC.
g) To submit the CDC membership list every six (6) months thereafter until the next CDC election.
h) The Secretary shall perform all duties delegated by the Chair. 


Section 5. Treasurer
The duties of the Treasurer shall be: 

a) To administer CDC funds and exercise general supervision over CDC income, and expenditures.
b) To file the quarterly financial report with the State Board of Elections.
c) To pay dues to the Central Committee treasurer as provided for under Party Plan Section 4.15.  
d) To keep accurate, permanent accounts of all CDC business and transactions, and cooperate fully in all audits.
e) To present a two year budget at a General Meeting to be approved by a majority.
f) To chair the Finance Committee.
g) To perform all duties delegated by the Chair.

Section 6. Financial Secretary
The duties of the Financial Secretary shall be:

a) To receive all dues and other funds payable to the CDC. 
b) To provide receipts to payers for all funds received.
c) To turn over funds and copies of receipts to the Treasurer for deposit to the CDC account.
d) To maintain a permanent record of all funds received.
e) To regularly report funds received to the Treasurer and the Executive Committee. 
f) To perform all duties delegated by the Chair.

Section 7. Sergeant at Arms
The duties of the Sergeant at Arms shall be: 

a) To supervise the setup and cleanup of all CDC meetings and caucuses.
b) To maintain order at all CDC meetings and functions. 
c)To perform all duties delegated by the Chair.


Section 1. General Meeting Frequency
General Meetings of the CDC shall be:

a) Held on a monthly basis, except in the months of July and December.
b) Open to the public.

Section 2. Special Meetings
Special Meetings of the CDC shall be held: 

a) Upon the call of the Chair whenever it is in the interest of the party, or, 
b) Within fifteen (15) days following receipt by the Chair of a written request, signed by at least ten (10) members of the membership, stating the purpose for which a meeting is requested. 
c) By majority vote of the CDC at a properly convened General Meeting. 
d) After the Chair gives at least ten (10) days notice to the entire membership stating the purpose for which the Special Meeting is called, and at such meeting no other business shall be conducted.

Section 3. Executive Committee Meetings
The Executive Committee shall meet whenever it is considered necessary to execute party business. A quorum shall consist of four.

Section 4. General and Special Meeting Quorum
Thirty percent (30%) of currently elected members of the CDC shall constitute a quorum at General and Special Meetings.

Section 5. Voting
Only those members in good standing may vote. A simple majority shall be necessary for the passage of any motion or resolution by the CDC. No member shall be entitled to vote by proxy at any General or Special Meeting of the CDC.



Section 1. Executive Committee
The Executive Committee shall consist of the elected officers, and, on a non-voting basis, a Parliamentarian and Chief Information Officer appointed by the Chair. Persons elected to the Executive Committee shall serve a term of two years from the date of the caucus or until a proper subsequent election is conducted, whichever occurs later.

Section 2. Vacancies
Executive Committee vacancies shall be filled at any General Meeting of the CDC after notice has been given. Nominations will be accepted from the floor and elected by majority vote.


Section 1. Standing Committees
The CDC shall have the following Standing Committees:

a) Finance
b) Public Affairs (includes: Media, Social Media, Public Relations and Outreach)
c) Membership
d) Precinct and Borough
e) Rules

Section 2. Operations
Standing Committees shall:

a) Except for Finance, choose a chair from among its members.
b) Meet on a regular basis.
c) Report activities monthly to the Executive Committee and as needed at General Meetings. 

The rules contained in the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised shall govern the CDC in all areas where not superseded by the Code of Virginia, the Party Plan of the Democratic Party of Virginia and these Bylaws.

These Bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of CDC members after presentation at a meeting, of which members were given advance notice.

Approved on this __th day of March, 2018

Chair - Randy Menefee
1st Vice Chair - Clayton Spruill
2nd Vice Chair - Cathy Bohan
Treasurer - Sean Horan
Secretary- Kecia Brothers-Hayes
Financial Secretary - David Midkiff
Sergeant at Arms - Linda Bryant



Summary of ByLaw Changes

The following changes were made by the Executive Committee on March 17, 2018.




Section 4. Reorganizational Caucus

Added “c. Refer to the State Party Plan, Article 8 and 9.”



Refers to the parts of the State Party Plan that govern the re-organizational process, so everyone knows how the process is to work.




Section 1.a. Membership Eligibility

Removed “or a written request for a hardship waiver to the Executive Committee.”



After review of the State Party Plan, there is no reference to a “hardship waiver” for dues. The following Article referencing fees for caucuses and conventions may have been confused with dues for committee membership.



Section 14.4 Fees

No fee of any kind may be charged for the right to attend and vote in a caucus. A voluntary administrative fee may be requested for participation in any convention. However, no party member shall be excluded from participation in a convention because of not paying a fee. Any Democrat who chooses to participate in a convention but who chooses not to pay the requested fee shall be permitted to participate.”


Section 1.b.

Removed “or requested and received a financial hardship waiver from the Executive Committee.”



Same as Section 1.a.


Section 2. Dues

Removed “A written request for a financial hardship waiver may be submitted to the Executive Committee for consideration.”



Same as Section 1.a.


Section 3. Good Standing

Removed “or whose waiver for financial hardship has been approved by the Executive Committee.”


Section 5. Attendance

A Member wanted to change the words “may be removed.” The ByLaws Chair accepted this change as a  Friendly Amendment. The Committee, after review, decided on the following compromise:


Keep “may be removed.”

Add “ A member can be reinstated after attending a meeting.”



  1. State Party Article 8 Section 8.9 Removal: The State Plan uses the words “may remove from both office and membership….”

  2. In the interests of meeting the spirit of the Member’s suggestion, with which we agree, we added a method of reinstatement.

  3. We need to have a mechanism for knowing, in advance, if we will have a quorum. It is a waste of everyone’s time to attend a Meeting where no business can be conducted.

  4. It does not seem to be an overly onerous requirement to contact an Officer by email, text, phone or letter to let him know that one will be absent from Meetings.

  5. To set up other changing categories of Membership would be difficult to define, would require extensive time and effort to make sure all parts of the Bylaws consistently referenced this Membership type.