BYLAWS OF THE LOS ANGELES LOCAL OF THE DEMOCRATIC SOCIALISTS OF AMERICA
ARTICLE I. NAME
The name of the Local shall be DSA-LA (Democratic Socialists of America – Los Angeles).
ARTICLE II. MISSION
As a national organization, the Democratic Socialists of America is poised to be a significant mass organization in the resurgence of a popular socialist movement in the United States. As one of the largest Locals in the organization, DSA-LA has the responsibility to clearly define our own mission statement and priorities, and articulate how those support the advancement of a democratic socialist political agenda at the local, state, national, and international level.
We are committed to envisioning and working towards a transformative politics that shifts power from capital to people. In all of our work, we aim to strike an intentional balance between challenging and resisting the systemic oppression of capitalism, sexism, racism, heteropatriarchy and xenophobia and imagining radical alternatives for a new social, economic, and political reality. We will organize with ambitious and emancipatory ends in mind, such as raising the collective consciousness of all people’s struggles and normalizing guaranteed rights that have been denatured under capitalism, while seeking concrete material wins and outcomes at every opportunity. We are an organization of the people, fighting without compromise for equality of outcome over equality of opportunity.
Within our ranks, we aim to exist along organizational lines developed and led by members, not an order imposed on members from above. DSA-LA should always be a deeply participatory organization whose processes and protocols reflect its values – democratic, transparent, and engaged in an ongoing struggle against oppressive and unequal power structures.
- Our approach to organizing reflects our understanding of capitalism, which is a complex artificially-imposed system that evolves dynamically in response to challenges.
- Our work needs to accommodate a variety of viewpoints, avoid exclusivity around tactics, and prioritize productive debate over the pursuit of unanimous consensus.
- Our identity as a multi-tendency organization is an asset and something that we embrace to its full advantage, and we are committed to intentionally incorporating minority viewpoints and diverse political perspectives into all of our work rather than striving to mandate agreement among all our members.
We recognize that the Left in the United States has been historically weakened and fractured, and the Left in Los Angeles is no exception. Indeed, Los Angeles has been developed by capitalist structures along deep regional, racial, and class stratifications that offer significant, unique challenges to building strong Left unity, and it must be our goal to challenge and transcend these divisions. Rebuilding and manifesting a strong socialist presence and power in Los Angeles and beyond will require looking at the Left as a complex ecosystem, and defining our role within it accordingly. DSA-LA aims to be an influential participant of that ecosystem by acting as a true resource and defining our power in service, not in governance or authority over other organizations in the Left in Los Angeles. Our goals encompass our participation in rebuilding a strong Left for everyone, not just members of our organization, and we do not wish to become a totalizing force or offer a singular solution to organizing on the Left. Instead, we aspire to build strength through solidarity, and offer a challenging alternative to capitalism for everyone.
This approach also applies within our own organization. We are conscious that our role as a large Local within a growing organization is not to enforce our political vision onto the rest of DSA, but to coordinate efforts in a productive and comradely way. We believe that our Local has a great deal to offer DSA National and other DSA Locals, and similarly that they have much to offer us. We further recognize that our mission statement and priorities must be reevaluated in response to changing political realities.
ARTICLE III. MEMBERSHIP
SECTION 1. MEMBERSHIP
Members of the Los Angeles Local, DSA-LA, will be those individuals whose dues to national DSA are paid in full, who reside and/or work in parts of the Los Angeles County area allocated to the Los Angeles Local by the DSA National organization. In the absence of precise geographical boundaries determined by DSA, the geographical boundaries of the Local will be stated in the Standing Rules of the Local. No member of the Local may hold membership in another DSA area Local, Chapter or Chapter Organizing Committee.
SECTION 2. DUTIES
It will be the responsibility of members to approve policies and guidelines for the operation of the Local, vote on matters requiring input from the full membership, contribute to Branches and Local Subgroups, and participate in elections for the Steering Committee, Branch Officers, Local Subgroups Officers, and delegates to DSA National Conventions. Non-members may participate in Local work and attend Local meetings, but may not run or vote in Local officer elections, Branch officer elections, Local Subgroup officer elections, or the Annual Convention. Non-members are also not able to vote in binding deliberations.
SECTION 3. REMOVAL OF MEMBERS
If a member is found to be in significant violation of the Local’s Misconduct Policy, the Investigative Commission responsible for fact-finding and harm assessment may recommend expulsion for certain offenses (see Misconduct Policy Section E). Expulsion must be ratified by a two-thirds supermajority vote of the Steering Committee. Such a vote may also be called if a member is found to be in substantial disagreement with the principles or policies of the organization, if they engage in entryist behavior, or if they are acting under the discipline of any self-defined democratic-centralist organization. An expelled member may make an appeal at the National level to the appropriate officer.
SECTION 3. DUES TO THE LOCAL
The Local may establish a Local pledge system of voluntary donations for its members.
ARTICLE IV. CHAPTER MEETINGS
SECTION 1. CHAPTER MEETINGS
The members of the Local will assemble for deliberation at an Annual Convention, in Local Meetings, or in Special Meetings in order to determine and review the Local’s official activities and policies and to appoint its members to committees, commissions, offices and other important functions or roles within the Local. Other types of meetings or events commonly held by the Local, such as those for political education, open forums, organizational training, member engagement, and open hearings, will not constitute legislative bodies or make decisions that are binding upon the Local.
The agenda for any Chapter Meeting will be set by the Steering Committee or a properly appointed subcommittee. Chapter Business, which may include appeals against the decision of any subsidiary body of the Local, including the Steering Committee, may be automatically referred to and agendized at a Chapter Meeting by a petition of fifty (50) members, unless otherwise specified in these Bylaws.
For all binding chapter business, remote votes and proxy votes, including asynchronous votes, may be facilitated and counted when possible.
SECTION 2. ANNUAL CONVENTION
The Local will hold an Annual Convention each year. The Annual Convention is the highest legislative and decision making body of the Local. The Annual Convention votes on modifications to the Local Mission Statement and Organizational Priorities, Priority Resolutions, and any other relevant business. Requirements for amending the bylaws are outlined in Article XIV, requirements for modifying the Local Mission Statement and Organization Priorities are outlined in Article VI. Section 1, and requirements for Priority Resolutions are outlined in this Article.
Priority Resolutions are time-bound, large-scale structural and/or campaign-based initiatives that require major Local resources. Priority Resolutions must adhere to these Bylaws and shall be undertaken over the course of the year following their adoption by the Annual Convention. Priority Resolutions can be proposed for consideration by submitting a formal proposal to the Steering Committee at least one (1) month in advance of the Annual Convention. The Steering Committee will make these proposals available for members to review at least two (2) weeks in advance of the Annual Convention and provide time on the Annual Convention agenda to discuss and vote on proposed Priority Resolutions. The Steering Committee will put out a call for proposals at least two (2) months in advance of the Annual Convention.
A proposed Priority Resolution must receive a two-thirds supermajority of votes at the Annual Convention in order to be adopted. Up to 3 Priority Resolutions will be adopted at the Annual Convention. Fewer Priority Resolutions may be adopted, but in the event that more than 3 proposed Priority Resolutions receive a two-thirds supermajority vote, there will be a second, runoff round of voting to determine the top three Priority Resolutions. In the event of a runoff vote, each member will vote for up to three of the Priority Resolutions which have been approved by a two-thirds supermajority—the three Priority Resolutions which receive the most votes will then be adopted.
SECTION 3. LOCAL MEETINGS
The Local will hold Local Meetings at least six times annually. The Annual Convention will count towards this minimum number of meetings. Priority Resolutions may not be submitted for consideration at Local Meetings.
Unless otherwise determined by the Steering Committee, Local Meetings shall run concurrently within all Branches. The times, dates and sites of Local Meetings shall be set in a schedule published and distributed by the Steering Committee at least two (2) weeks prior to the meeting(s).
The Steering Committee will set the agenda for Branch Meetings in consultation with Branch Coordinators, with time reserved for Branch business to be determined by Branch Coordinators. Nothing in these bylaws shall preclude Branch Coordinators from convening branch members more frequently than called for in the schedule of Chapter Meetings. All Branch Meetings shall be open to all Local members. For the purposes of considering Local business, an item must be agendized, presented and debated at a corresponding Meeting for every Branch before a vote may be called.
SECTION 4. SPECIAL MEETINGS
Special Meetings may be called by two-thirds (⅔) of the full Steering Committee, or by petition of at least twenty-five percent (25%) of the members of the Local in good standing filed with the Secretary, provided that the date for the Special Meeting called for in the petition is not set sooner than twenty-one (21) or later than sixty (60) days from its filing.
Five days written notice of the date, time, location and reason(s) for which the Special Meeting is called will be given to the members of the Local. The members assembled at a Special Meeting may not consider any business that is not included in the notice.
SECTION 5. QUORUM
A quorum of 10% of Local members, in person or by proxy, or 100 members present and voting in person, whichever is lower, must be present in order to conduct business. If applicable, absentee ballots or votes cast electronically shall count towards attaining quorum of the business which it pertains to.
Quorum for the Annual Convention or for meetings where motions to amend these bylaws are considered will be 10% of the membership, in person or by proxy, or 150 members present and voting in person, whichever is lower.
ARTICLE V. BRANCHES
SECTION 1. DEFINITION
A Branch is a geographically defined subdivision of the Local, not to overlap with another Branch. All members of the Local shall belong to one and only one Branch.
SECTION 2. PURPOSE
The primary purpose of Branches shall be to advance the goals of the Local, implement and administer Local campaigns and projects, increase member participation and recruitment, and improve accessibility to DSA-LA’s work. Branch Meetings shall be the primary regular membership meetings, open to all members of the Local.
All Branches shall be required to have at least two officers named Coordinators (see Article V, Section 8), elected by members of the Branch. Those officers shall be responsible for ensuring that Branch meetings occur, facilitating relationship-building among Branch members, initiating geography-focused recruitment, facilitating Branch meetings, and determining the content of the Branch business portion of the agenda. Branch officers will also work in consultation with the Steering Committee to appoint additional positions as needed.
To maintain active Branch designation, Branches must hold Branch meetings in accordance with the Local Meeting schedule.
SECTION 3. MEMBERSHIP
Members of Branches will be members of the Los Angeles Local of DSA who reside within the prescribed boundaries of their Branch.
SECTION 4. FORMATION
The Steering Committee shall encourage the development of member-led initiatives to organize new branches. 50 DSA-LA members in good standing may petition the Steering Committee to form a Branch. The 50 petitioners may not include elected leadership of other Branches, and must all reside in the proposed boundaries of the Branch. One member may not be signatory to more than one proposed Branch petition simultaneously.
The Steering Committee will then consider the petition to form a new Branch. If the Steering Committee approves the proposal, it will go to a vote of the membership with the Steering Committee’s support. If the Steering Committee rejects the proposal, 50 petitioners within the proposed boundaries must be joined by 50 petitioners outside of the proposed boundaries to petition for a vote of the whole DSA-LA membership on the question. All petitioners must be members in good standing.
Each Local-wide vote on proposed Branch formation must be preceded by dedicated time at a Local Meeting, with time reserved for debate for and against the proposal. The vote passes by a simple majority, provided that at least ten percent of Local members participate in the vote, otherwise it fails.
SECTION 5. DISSOLUTION
The Steering Committee is the only body empowered to dissolve a Branch, and shall only do so in cases of nonfeasance, with a two-thirds majority vote of the Steering Committee. Nonfeasance of a Branch shall be defined as repeated failure of a Branch to convene a reasonable number of members at Branch Meetings.
ARTICLE VI. LOCAL SUBGROUPS
SECTION 1. LOCAL SUBGROUPS
The Local shall be comprised of multiple forms of subsidiary deliberative bodies, referred to collectively in this document as Local Subgroups:
Standing Committees, Committees, and time-bound Working Groups.
SECTION 2. Committees
Committees are bodies essential to the character of the Local, and may be organized around common skills, institutions, or issues. The Steering Committee or the Local may establish best practices and procedures for the democratic operation of Committees.
All Committees are required to have a platform or mission statement, developed by the committee in accordance with Local policy and ratified by a Local-wide vote (see Article V, Section 7), and at least two officers elected by the membership (see Article V, Section 8). At least one of those officers must be designated as Chair, whose primary responsibilities will be facilitating committee strategization and progress towards the Local goals that the Committee is democratically charged with by the Local membership and the Steering Committee. Another must be designated as Coordinator, whose primary responsibilities will be coordinating and communicating with other bodies of the Local and producing reports on work for the Local membership and the Steering Committee.
All Committees are required to maintain publicly-available rules of order — where a “rules of order” is defined to include any set of explicit, formally codified, suspendable, and democratically amendable decision-making procedures—which they shall be required to use for facilitating their meetings. The default set of rules for each Subgroup shall be “Rusty’s Rules of Order, amended for DSA-LA Local Subgroups.”
To maintain active Committee designation, they must:
- Have at least one member responsible for onboarding new members, engaging in member retention efforts, and ensuring that Subgroup work includes efforts to grow the membership of the Local.
- Have at least one member working with the Communications Director to ensure that Local communications accurately reflect and amplify Committee work.
- Produce a report, at least quarterly, sent to the Steering Committee and available digitally to all members, regarding progress in ongoing campaigns or projects charged to the Subgroup.
- Produce an annual report to be submitted to each Local Convention for membership approval.
- Maintain and make available to Local leadership records of key debates and decisions, including coalition partnerships.
SECTION 3. STANDING COMMITTEES
Standing Committees will (a) consist of a definite number of members in good standing of the Local not fewer than three in number; who are (b) appointed or elected to a specific task or tasks specified by either (i) the Steering Committee or (ii) the Local.
Their function will be to oversee administrative and political functions that are essential to the ongoing effectiveness of the Local in pursuing the realization of its purposes.
The chair of each standing committee will be elected along with the leadership of the other Local Subgroups. They will serve terms of the same length. The other members of the standing committee may be nominated by the chair and approved by a majority of the Steering Committee, unless an alternate method for determining committee membership is specified in the founding of the committee.
SECTION 4. TIME-BOUND WORKING GROUPS
Time-bound working groups may be established by the Steering Committee or the Local body in order to administer a particular task or campaign for the Local. The leadership, structure, and election timeframe of time-bound working groups must ordinarily match that as defined in Section 1 and Section 8, but may differ if such is specified in their founding.
SECTION 5. COMMITTEE PLATFORMS
Platforms should outline the group’s overall purpose and key stances should articulate a ‘big picture’ vision of what success would look like for the group, and should represent the group’s values and broad purpose. They should also include mention of the populations with whom the group will be working in solidarity.
Platforms ultimately guide the direction and political will of the group. They must be developed democratically and ratified within the group before being put up for an up-or-down Local-wide vote, requiring a simple majority to pass initially and a two-thirds supermajority to pass on subsequent votes (refer to Article VI, Section 2).
Section 6. NON-DELIBERATIVE & AUXILIARY GROUPS
The Local may formally recognize non-deliberative and auxiliary groups that are aligned with the purposes of the organization but which are not subsidiary bodies of DSA Los Angeles. These may include (but will not be limited to) affiliations and coalitions of organizations similar to the Local; political campaigns that align with the purposes of the Local; political and policy interest groups; labor unions and groups; Young Democratic Socialists of America chapters; DSA working groups; and caucuses in the Local. Terms, criteria and procedures for granting privileges or recognition to non-deliberative and auxiliary groups, including speaking time at meetings, exhibition space at meetings, written or online promotion or endorsement, financial support and other types of formal recognition, will be determined in the Standing Rules, Policies and Procedures of the Local and subject to these Bylaws.
SECTION 7. DISSOLUTION OF LOCAL SUBGROUPS
In the case that a Local Subgroup, is deliberately and grossly acting in contradiction to the collectively determined Local Mission and Organizational Priorities or their own ratified platform, or consistently fails to perform basic Local Subgroup duties, the Steering Committee or the Local may vote to dissolve a Local Subgroup, with a two-thirds majority vote required to execute the dissolution. The rationale and result of any such vote called must be published to the membership.
ARTICLE VII. ELECTIONS
SECTION 1. NOMINATIONS COMMITTEE
A three-person Nominations Committee shall be established at least one month prior to every Local Officer election by vote of the Local membership, unless only 3 members are nominated for the Committee, in which case they will be declared elected by acclamation. The Nominations Committee shall conduct the Local Officer election. It shall solicit and receive nominations for the positions to be elected. The Nominations Committee shall also conduct Local Subgroup Officer elections following Local Officer Elections.
SECTION 2. ELECTIONS
Election for Local and Branch Officers shall be held with voting closing at least two weeks prior to the end of the previous Officers’ terms, in order to allow a two-week transition period. Elections shall be run by secret ballot. If a position is uncontested, the nominee will be declared elected by acclamation.
The term of office for any Local and Branch Officer shall be one year commencing the first week of January each year, with elections closing at the beginning of the third week of December.
The term of office for any elected Local Subgroup Officer shall be one year commencing the first week of February each year, with elections closing at the beginning of the third week of January, with the exception of Local Subgroup Officers established under a different structure or election schedule per Article VI, Section 3 and/or 4.
SECTION 3. RECALLS
As officers of the Local exist to serve the Local, any elected officer, including Local Subgroup Officers, may also be recalled by the Local. A recall vote may be triggered by petition signed by a number of members equal to or greater than two-thirds of the total number of votes cast during the previous election, or by fifty percent of Local membership, whichever number is lower. Once triggered, a Nominations Committee shall be established in accordance with Section 1 to hold a forum on the recall, followed by a Local-wide election, where a supermajority of two-thirds of voters shall be required to recall the officer.
Additionally, in the case of malfeasance or nonfeasance, the Steering Committee may call a vote to remove an officer, with a two-thirds majority vote of the Steering Committee required to execute the removal. Local Officers may not vote in the matter of their own recall. The rationale and result of any such vote called must be published to the membership. Malfeasance shall be defined as intentional misuse of Local resources, abuse of Local Officer powers, or deliberate misrepresentation of the positions of the Local. Nonfeasance shall be defined as an ongoing or repeated failure to execute Officer duties and maintain regular contact with other Local Officers, without making arrangements to be replaced or voluntarily stepping down from the position, or failure to maintain membership. A Local Officer who is no longer a member in good standing shall be privately notified and given at least two (2) weeks to renew membership prior to a recall or removal vote.
Additionally, if a Local Officer is found to be in significant violation of the Local’s Misconduct Policy, which shall always be accessible as a part of the Local’s Standing Rules, removal from the Local or Local Subgroup office may be considered.
SECTION 4. VACANCIES
In the event of a vacancy, whether due to recall or resignation, the empty seat shall be filled by the following procedure:
- If the vacancy occurs within the first six (6) months of the term, the seat will be filled by a member in good standing according to the results of the previous election, with votes for the recalled officer being transferred according to the regular voting process.
- If the vacancy occurs after the first six (6) months of the term, or if there are no candidates that ran during the previous election for the vacant seat, the Local Steering Committee will appoint a replacement member in good standing for the remainder of the term.
ARTICLE VIII: LOCAL OFFICERS
SECTION 1. OFFICERS, ELECTIONS, AND TERMS
The Local shall annually elect a Recording Secretary, Communications Director, Treasurer, Campaigns Coordinator, YDSA Coordinator, and five (5) at-large members of the Steering Committee.
SECTION 2. RECORDING SECRETARY
The Recording Secretary will be responsible for:
- the taking of minutes of all Steering Committee meetings, and shall have custody of these minutes, and resolutions, reports and other official records of the Local.
- ensuring that key decisions and meeting minutes are available to members of the Local.
- maintaining detailed and accurate membership records in coordination with the Administrative Committee, as well as Local bylaws and official Local organizational policies.
- coordinating with Local Subgroups to receive records of key debates and decisions
- transferring all records to their successor at the end of their term.
SECTION 3. COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR
The Communications Director will be responsible for:
- Coordinating public-facing statements from the Local, including but not limited to the DSA-LA website, social media, and other Local communications outlets.
- Coordinating regular internal email newsletters and announcements.
- Coordinating a standing committee, the Communications Committee, that includes representatives from each Local Subgroup and Branch in the Local, to ensure that both external and internal communications accurately represent work done across all of the Local’s groups.
SECTION 4. TREASURER
The Treasurer will be responsible for the funds and financial records of the Local. All funds collected by the Local will be turned over to the Treasurer, who shall deposit them in a bank account under the name of the Local. In cooperation with the Recording Secretary, the Treasurer will be responsible for ensuring that membership dues are paid and up-to-date. The Treasurer will prepare the annual Local budget, and deliver the Local financial report to the Annual Convention of the Local as well as periodic progress reports as requested by the Steering Committee of the Local.
SECTION 5. CAMPAIGNS COORDINATOR
The Campaigns Coordinator shall be responsible for coordinating the activity of committees, branches and working groups, including assisting in the organizational structure, ensuring meetings of the committees operate according to principles of transparency, accessibility, and full participation, and reporting back to the Steering Committee on the progress and operations of committee and the Local’s campaigns, and planning logistics of the Annual Convention. The Campaigns Coordinator will also be responsible for tracking the Local’s coalitions and external relationships.
SECTION 7. YDSA COORDINATOR
The YDSA Coordinator shall be responsible for maintaining a network of coordinators and representatives from YDSA Locals across Los Angeles, as well as extending that network to include nearby regional DSA and YDSA Locals. They shall be responsible for ensuring that YDSA Locals have abundant avenues to work in solidarity with the Local’s work, as well as to request resources and support from the Local for YDSA Local-led campaigns and initiatives.
SECTION 8. AT LARGE OFFICERS
Five At-large officers of the Local serve as members of the Steering Committee and are responsible for ensuring all Steering Committee work is executed in accordance with the Local’s Mission and Organizational Priorities.
SECTION 9. ADDITIONAL DUTIES
The Local Steering Committee may assign additional temporary duties to an officer or member in good standing of the Local, so long as such assignments do not conflict with the designation of responsibilities outlined in these Bylaws.
ARTICLE IX. STEERING COMMITTEE
SECTION 1. COMPOSITION AND PURPOSE
The Steering Committee shall comprise the Communications Director, the Treasurer, the Campaigns Coordinator, the Recording Secretary, and the five elected at-large Officers of the Local. The Steering Committee is the highest elected body. It shall administer the affairs and oversee the implementation of the decisions of the DSA-LA membership, ensuring that the Local’s work is done in alignment with the Local Mission, Organizational Priorities and the Local Bylaws. It may propose policies and activities to the membership; receives reports from local subgroups and Branches; advises local subgroups and Branches on policy issues; calls emergency meetings of the membership; and acts on any matter requiring immediate attention by DSA-LA. When relevant, actions of the Steering Committee shall be guided or superseded by resolutions passed or decisions made by the membership, which shall always be the supreme political body of the Local, at member meetings or Annual Conventions.
SECTION 2. DUTIES
The Steering Committee’s duties shall include:
- Facilitating and planning meetings of the Local at least six times annually, including the Annual Convention, with Branch Coordinators as appropriate, and acting on behalf of the organization between meetings.
- Accepting proposals and facilitating votes for updates to the Local Mission Statement, Organizational Priorities, and Bylaws.
- Ensuring that the Communications Coordinator, Recording Secretary, Treasurer, and YDSA Coordinator have sufficient resources and help to perform their duties, including empowering and overseeing fundraising and communications standing committees.
- Evaluating proposals and analyses in accordance with Article VI.
- Overseeing Local communication and coordination with other DSA Locals and responsibilities to DSA National
- Facilitating coordination between Local Subgroups and ensuring that all projects are executed in keeping with the Local-wide Mission Statement and Organizational Priorities and with decisions made by the membership.
- Drafting and executing Local administrative policy in accordance with the Local Organizational Priorities to ensure the smooth working of the Local
- Requesting and receiving regular reports from all Local Subgroup Coordinators
- Advising Local Subgroups on policy issues and proposing activities to the general membership
- Publishing an annual report describing the projects, finances, accomplishments, and setbacks of the previous year and setting forth the plans and goals for the Local in the coming year.
- Calling emergency meetings of the membership as needed, in accordance with Article IV, Section 3.
SECTION 3. MEETINGS & DECISIONS
The Steering Committee shall meet at least twice per month. A quorum of at least six members shall be required to make decisions. In all Steering Committee votes, a majority or supermajority, as appropriate, shall be of the voting-eligible Steering body and not counted of voting members.
Meetings shall be open for all members to observe, outside of executive sessions required for sensitive discussions, which shall require a two-thirds vote of those present on the steering committee, to enter. The Steering Committee shall designate some method whereby members shall be allowed to comment upon the items on the meeting prior to their voting on.
The preliminary agenda (open to amendment and addition at the meeting) shall be posted 48 hours in advance, along with a link to join, on an internal communication platform accessible to members. Minutes of these meetings shall also be posted within 2 weeks after their approval.
ARTICLE X. ELECTORAL ENDORSEMENTS
SECTION 1. LOCAL ENDORSEMENTS
The power to endorse a candidate for elected public office or a ballot measure (“Local Endorsements”) will only belong to a majority of members voting at a Chapter Meeting. The Electoral Committee may establish additional requirements to consider Local Endorsements. Any appeal against a decision by the Electoral Committee may be agendized for a Chapter Meeting by a petition of 100 members in good standing and overturned by a ⅔ supermajority vote of the Local.
SECTION 2. ELECTORAL COMMITTEE
The Electoral Committee shall be a five member Standing Committee elected by the Local. The responsibilities of the Electoral Committee shall be:
- Advancing the Local’s electoral strategy
- Advising and supporting the Steering Committee in maintaining relationships with Local member-electeds.
- Facilitating Local Endorsements, including coordinating votes to ensure that the Local is not overburdened
- Establishing and coordinating open non-deliberative bodies or subcommittees to expand and implement the chapter’s electoral work and strategy, including supporting any working groups established in support of Local Endorsements
Electoral Committee members may not be employed by campaigns seeking Local Endorsement.
SECTION 3. INITIATING ENDORSEMENT PROCESSES
The power to initiate a Local Endorsement will only belong to 50 members who have signed onto a written proposal to start the endorsement process for the candidate or ballot measure.
ARTICLE XI. GRIEVANCES, MISCONDUCT, AND POLICY ENFORCEMENT
The Local shall abide by the DSA-LA Misconduct Policy when responding to allegations of member misconduct. As appropriate, policies and resources from the National organization will be implemented as they become available, in accordance with the DSA-LA Misconduct Policy.
ARTICLE XII. DELEGATES TO NATIONAL, REGIONAL, AND STATE BODIES
Delegates and alternates representing the Local to the National Convention and any other meeting of DSA bodies in which decisions binding on the Local are to be made will be elected by the full membership of the Local.
Delegates shall seek input and guidance, facilitated by the Steering Committee as necessary, from the Local membership body regarding the topics of debate at the convention.
ARTICLE XIII. PROHIBITED ACTIVITY
The Los Angeles Local shall not engage in activity prohibited by IRS guidelines or similar rules established by the State of California. Nor shall the Local engage in any activity prohibited by resolutions adopted by DSA’s National Convention or DSA’s National Political Committee.
ARTICLE XIV. AMENDMENTS
Proposed amendments to these Bylaws must be made by written resolution, endorsed by 25 members of Local members, and submitted to the Steering Committee at least one (1) month in advance of a Local Meeting or the Annual Convention. The Steering Committee will make these proposed amendments available for members to review at least two (2) weeks in advance of the Local Meeting or Annual Convention and provide time on the Local Meeting or Annual Convention agenda to discuss and vote on them. If any proposed amendment receives a two-thirds supermajority of votes, the Steering Committee will update the bylaws accordingly.
ARTICLE XV. RULES OF THE LOCAL
SECTION 1. RULES
Meetings shall be conducted in such a manner as to encourage member participation and deliberation. Contributions and perspectives from members of historically marginalized groups shall be represented and actively encouraged throughout.
The Rules contained in Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised shall be used for meetings where amendments to these Bylaws are to be considered.
SECTION 2. ACTION OUT OF ORDER
Any action taken by an officer or member of the Local in contravention of these Bylaws is null and void.