By-Laws

Democratic Central Committee of Charles County


The following articles shall serve as the Constitution and By-Laws of the Democratic Central Committee of Charles County and shall be known as the Committee’s By-Laws.


ARTICLE I – Name


1.1 The name of the elected Democratic Party officials in Charles County, Maryland, (the “County”) shall be the “Democratic Central Committee of Charles County” (“Central Committee”). The Central Committee shall represent the Maryland Democratic Party within the County and shall perform such functions required by the laws of the State of Maryland, the Charter and By-Laws of the Democratic Party of the United States, and the Constitution and By-Laws of the Maryland Democratic Party. The Central Committee may also be referred to as the “Charles County Democratic Central Committee”.


1.2 When the provisions of these By-Laws conflict with the laws of the United States or the State of Maryland, the Charter or By-Laws of the Democratic Party of the United States, or the Constitution and By-Laws of the Maryland Democratic Party, these By-Laws shall not control. All other provisions of these By-Laws shall remain in full force and effect.


ARTICLE II – Responsibilities


It shall be the duty and responsibility of each member of the Central Committee to promote the interests of the National Democratic Party (the “National Party”), the Maryland Democratic Party (the “State Party”), and the Charles County Democratic Party.


2.1 The Central Committee shall be the official spokesman for the Maryland Democratic Party in Charles County, direct local party activity and policy, and shall perform such functions and tasks as required by the laws of the state of Maryland and the constitution and By-laws of the Maryland Democratic Party.


2.2 The Central Committee shall promote the interests of the Democratic Party and its candidates over those of the opposing political parties and candidates.


2.3 The Central Committee shall also foster and perpetuate the ideals of the Democratic Party; recruit new members for the Democratic Party; stimulate an active interest in political and governmental affairs; encourage qualified Democrats to seek office; help acquaint voters with the issues and Democratic candidates in all elections; provide social activities and events and encourage those interests which maintain party harmony; raise funds for the Democratic Party; and support and endorse all Democratic candidates in General Elections. No contested candidates for the Primary Election shall be endorsed or supported prior to the Primary Election.


2.4 The Central Committee shall:   (Feb 2014 By-Laws – Rev 3.1)


2.4.1 Present names of candidates as required by law to the Governor for appointment.


2.4.2 Make recommendations regarding various political appointments to the Governor, to Federal officials, and to local officials.


2.4.3 Raise funds for the local Democratic Party and the State Party.


2.4.4 Cooperate with the State Party in all matters relating to the Democratic Party of Maryland.


2.4.5 Responsible for promoting election campaigns and all facets thereof in cooperation with the Democratic Party candidates.


2.4.5.1 Support all candidates in a Democratic primary without endorsement of any one or group of candidates.


2.4.5.2 Support all Democratic candidates in a general election.


2.5 The Central Committee shall keep a current copy of its By-Laws on file with at the State Party and elsewhere as required by law.


ARTICLE III – Membership


3.1 The composition of the Charles County Democratic Central Committee is prescribed in accordance with the Annotated Code of Maryland, Election Law Article, Section 4-202, and the Maryland Democratic Party By-Laws.


3.2 Elected members shall serve a term of four years, or until their successors qualify.


3.3 When required by the laws of the State of Maryland, the Charter and By-Laws of the National Party, and the Constitution and By-Laws of the State Party to have additional members of the Central Committee, the Central Committee may choose one or more appointed members. Such appointed members shall be proposed to the State Party to become members of the State Central Committee. Such appointed members shall be voting members of the Central Committee of Charles County and are subject to all provisions of these By-Laws.


3.4 In the event that the eleven members elected in the party’s Gubernatorial primary are not equally divided between men and women, the Central Committee may select such additional members as will cause the membership to be so equally divided, in accordance with the Charter of the Democratic Party of the United States and the Constitution and By-Laws of the Maryland Democratic Party. By a majority vote of the Central Committee such additional members will also be accorded full privileges to vote and hold office as members of the Central Committee.


3.5 Members of the Central Committee shall at all times conduct themselves in a manner consistent with the Maryland Public Ethics law as set forth in Title 15 of the State Government Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland governing the ethical conduct of public officials to assure that they shall at all times conduct themselves in a manner that reflects credibility upon the office that they serve, shall not use their office to gain (Feb 2014 By-Laws – Rev 3.1) special privileges and benefits, and shall refrain from action in their official capacities affected by personal interests.


3.6 Members may be disqualified for office, and may be removed as a member upon conviction of a felony, or by openly supporting or endorsing a candidate for public office of another political party or an independent candidate who is opposed by a Democratic candidate for the same office, or for malfeasance or misfeasance of office. A member so reported to the Central Committee shall be immediately removed from office unless the member appeals to the State Party under its By-Laws within 30 days.


3.7 A member of the Central Committee may be considered to have resigned by virtue of his or her failure to participate in the activities and affairs of the Democratic Party at the local and state level.


3.7.1 Failure to participate shall be defined as failure to attend 75% of the general meetings of the Central Committee during a rolling one-year period.


3.7.2 The Central Committee shall remove from office and membership any member who misses three (3) consecutive regular meetings of the committee without having been excused, and then such member’s membership on the committee may be revoked. Such action shall be taken only on the recommendation of the Credentials Committee. Before making a recommendation of removal, the Credentials Committee shall provide the member with ten (10) days written notice of the charges and with an opportunity for a hearing before the Credentials Committee.


3.7.3 If the Secretary determines that any Central Committee member has failed to meet the Central Committee’s attendance rules, the Secretary shall immediately report to the Chair of the automatic resignation of the Central Committee member. The Chair will report the resignation of the Central Committee member at the next general meeting of the Central Committee. If the Central Committee concurs, the member shall be removed immediately unless the member appeals to the State Party under its By-Laws within 30 days.


3.7.4 Any member who shall be guilty of willful neglect of duty imposed upon him may have his/her membership revoked.


3.8 In the event of the death, resignation, removal, or disqualification of a member of the Central Committee, said vacancy shall be filled at a general meeting held within sixty (60) days after the vacancy shall occur. The Chair will task the Credentials Committee with responsibility for ensuring that reasonable public notice is given concerning the

vacancy, the procedure for filling the vacancy, and the qualification and requirements for candidates to fill the vacancy. The Credentials Committee will also be responsible for screening candidates and organizing the interview/selection process. Such appointed members shall be proposed to the State Party to become members of the

State Central Committee. In the event the Central Committee fails to fill the vacancy in the allotted time, the Chair of the Maryland Democratic Party may appoint a successor subject to the approval of the Executive Committee of the State Party. Feb 2014 By-Laws – Rev 3.1


ARTICLE IV – Officers


4.1 The members of the Central Committee shall elect their own officers, who shall be:

Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary, and Treasurer.

4.2 The votes of a majority of the members of the Central Committee shall be required to

elect each officer.

4.3 The officers shall serve for a term of two years (September to September) or until a

successor is elected.

4.4 The election of officers shall be held in the month of the primary election that elected

the Central Committee.

4.5 Officers may be removed during their term upon vote of the majority of the Central

Committee.

4.6 Roles and responsibilities of officers:

4.6.1 Chair. The Chair shall preside at all meetings of the Central Committee,

preserve order during the deliberations, and appoint subcommittees. The Chair

is not a voting member of the Central Committee and will only vote in instances

of a tie. The Chair shall be an ex officio, nonvoting member of all Standing

subcommittees, however, the attendance of the Chair shall not be considered

for purposes of a quorum. The Chair may convene a meeting of any standing or

special committee. The Chair appoints the chair and approves membership of

all standing and special Committees. The Chair shall sign appropriate documents

in connection with the work of the Central Committee. The Chair may call a

special meeting of the Vice Chair, Secretary, Treasurer and committee chairs

during the year as needed. In addition, the Chair shall have other powers and

duties as they are granted to the Chair by resolution (two-thirds majority vote)

of the Central Committee.

4.6.2 Vice Chair. The Vice Chair shall perform the duties of the Chair in the Chair’s

absence and shall serve as acting Chair in the event of a vacancy in the office of

Chair until such time as a new Chair is elected.

4.6.3 Secretary. The Secretary shall have charge of all books, papers, records and

other documents of the Central Committee, shall compile statistics and other

data as may be required for the use of the members of the Central Committee

and shall perform other duties as may be directed by the Central Committee.

The Secretary shall keep the minutes of meetings of the Central Committee

(both general meetings and executive meetings), record attendance of such

meetings, and as promptly as possible, provide copies (electronic copies are

acceptable) to each member of the Central Committee.

4.6.4 Treasurer. The Treasurer shall keep accounts of all monies the Central

Committee receives and disburses and shall deposit all monies and valuables in

the name and to the credit of the Central Committee in such banks and

depositories as the Central Committee shall designate by appropriate

resolution. The Treasurer shall submit a detailed financial report at each regular

Feb 2014 By-Laws – Rev 3.1

meeting of the Central Committee and submit all financial reports as required

by law. The Treasurer shall prepare and present an annual budget to the

Central Committee. All expenditures shall be authorized by the Treasurer and

shall be paid upon presentation of receipted bills or vouchers.

4.7 In the event of a vacancy of an officer, the Central Committee shall elect a replacement

to fill the unexpired term of the officer.


ARTICLE V – Committees


5.1 The Central Committee by majority vote of its members may establish such standing

subcommittees as may be deemed necessary to promote the principles and objectives

of the Democratic Party. The Chairman of each such standing subcommittee shall be

appointed by the Central Committee from among the registered Democratic voters in

the County. Such subcommittees may include (for example): communications,

liaison/outreach, fundraising, legislative, voter registration, rules, credentials, events,

advisory, finance and education.

5.2 The Credentials Committee shall be chaired by the Vice Chair of the Central Committee

and be composed of the Vice Chair and three other members of the Central Committee

appointed by the Chair. The Credentials Committee shall have the responsibility of

certifying the qualifications of all members of the Central Committee and of reviewing

petitions for removal of members.

5.3 There shall be an Advisory Committee to the Central Committee. The Advisory

Committee shall be composed of the Presidents of the county’s local Democratic clubs

(such as Northern, Western, and 4th and 5th District clubs), members of the general

public, and at least one other member of the Central Committee appointed by the

Chair. The Advisory Committee shall act in an advisory capacity to the Central

Committee and shall facilitate interaction between the Central Committee and the

citizens of the county.

5.3 With the concurrence of the Central Committee, the Chair may appoint such temporary

subcommittees as are deemed necessary.


ARTICLE VI – Meetings


6.1 There shall be at least ten (10) general meetings of the Central Committee each year.

Other general meetings may be called as deemed necessary by the Chair, by an

affirmative vote of the Executive Committee, or by request of any three members of the

Central Committee. General meetings shall be open to the public.

6.2 The Central Committee, by majority vote of its members, may meet at any time and as

frequently as desired in executive session which shall be closed to the public.

6.3 A quorum shall consist of a majority of the members of the Central Committee.

6.4 All members are expected to attend all meetings and other functions of the committee

unless excused from such attendance by having given prior notice to the Chair or the

Feb 2014 By-Laws – Rev 3.1

Secretary. If any member shall miss three consecutive regular meetings without having

been excused, then such member’s membership on the committee may be revoked.

6.5 Except as otherwise provided herein, the latest revision of Robert’s Rules of Order shall

govern conduct of all meetings, except when they conflict with the Constitution or By-

Laws of the Maryland Democratic Party or a resolution duly adopted by the Democratic

State Central Committee of Maryland or by the Central Committee carried by a twothirds

majority vote.

6.6 Five days written notice shall be given to all members of all regular meetings. Said

notice shall state the date, time, address, and agenda for the forthcoming meeting.

6.7 The Chair may limit the agenda of any meeting to those submitted to the Chair by a

member of the Central Committee at least twenty-four (24) hours prior to the meeting.

6.8 In accordance with the By-Laws of the State Party, after a primary election selecting

new members of the Central Committee, the newly elected Central Committee shall

meet at a place and time selected by the Chair of the outgoing Central Committee for

the purpose of organizing the new committee.

6.9 No member shall be permitted to vote by proxy.

6.10 The following order of business shall be observed at all meetings as far as applicable:

a. Roll Call

b. Reading, correction and approval of the minutes of previous meeting.

c. Reports of officers and subcommittees

d. Old business

e. New business


ARTICLE VII – Amendments


7.1 These By-Laws can be amended at any regular meeting of the Central Committee by

two-thirds vote, provided that the amendments have been submitted at the previous

regular meeting.


ARTICLE VIII – Adoption


8.1 These By-Laws shall become effective immediately following their adoption by a twothirds

majority vote of all members of the Central Committee at a general meeting.

8.2 Upon adoption, these By-Laws supersede previous Constitutions and By-Laws of the

Democratic Central Committee of Charles County.

Certified by the members of the Democratic Central Committee of Charles County:

___________________________________________ Date: _______________

Gilbert Bowling, Chair

Jan. 2015 By-Laws – Rev 3.1