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Proposal Details

Proposal ID20
ProposalBylaws amendment: Article 13 Status and Amendment of GPCA Governing Rules
PresenterCoordinating Committee
Floor ManagerMike Feinstein
Discussion12/11/2012 - 01/09/2013
Voting01/10/2013 - 01/18/2013
Presens Quorum13 0.5001
Consens Quorum38 0.6666 of Yes and No Votes


This article establishes greater clarity about how the GPCA's rules documents are amended, by consolidating that information in one place in the bylaws.

As part of that process, existing section on Bylaws Interpretations is placed here. Currently it is in the Bylaws Committee section, but Bylaws Interpretations are not a process primarily of the Bylaws Committee, but rather of the Coordinating Committee and General Assembly, with only an advisory role for the Bylaws Committee.

Text is then added to the Bylaws Interpretation section to provide for the option of using the Standing General Assembly for confirming bylaws interpretations, if an in-person General Assembly is not already scheduled within 60 days.

Finally this amendment eliminates the existing long and unused "Article 12. Rules and Procedures" text, which has been disregarded in practice.


That the following text be approved

Article 13. Status and Amendment of GPCA Governing Rules

13-1 Authority

The Bylaws shall be the highest governing document of the GPCA. They shall describe the Party's basic structure, jurisdiction of power and the duties and responsibilities of its constituent parts. The Party's other governing documents shall implement the structure described in the Bylaws. Where there is ambiguity, the Bylaws shall take precedence. The other governing documents shall be the Rules and Procedures and the Fiscal Policy.

13-2 Amendment

13-2.1 The governing documents may be amended by a 2/3 vote of the General Assembly. An amendment may be initiated by the Bylaws Committee, Coordinating Committee or an active County Organization; or by a Committee or Working Group, but only to that specific section of the governing documents that govern them.

13-2.2 Each proposed amendment must be submitted to the Bylaws Committee. The Bylaws Committee shall review the proposed amendments and provide recommendations to the sponsors, including to promote consistency in numbering, format, terminology and meaning with existing documents, to minimize ambiguity and to promote clarify.

13-3 Bylaws Interpretation

In cases of ambiguity or procedural disagreement, the General Assembly shall decide for itself the meaning of its governing documents, the appropriate procedure to be followed and what amendments are necessary to resolve any further ambiguity or disagreement. Between General Assembly meetings, the Coordinating Committee shall decide these questions and the Bylaws Committee is charged with assisting with the Coordinating Committee in this process by providing analysis. Such Coordinating Committee determinations are subject to a 2/3 confirmation by the General Assembly. If the Coordinating Committee makes such a determination within 60 days of the receipt of the petition, the Coordinating Committee shall place the vote on the draft agenda, and any agenda approved by the General Assembly must include the vote. If an in-person General Assembly is not scheduled to occur within 60 days of the receipt of the petition, the Coordinating Committee shall submit the decision for confirmation by the Standing Green Assembly for an on-line discussion and vote at the next available starting date for on-line proposals, as defined in these bylaws.

13-4 Abbreviations

The name 'Green Party of California' shall be spelled out the first time it is used in each of the party's governing documents and thereafter referred to as the GPCA or the Party. The name 'Green Party of the United States' shall be spelled out the first time it is used in each of the party's governing documents and thereafter be referred to as the GPUS. The names for other party entities such as committees and working groups shall be spelled out each time.




Text in Existing Bylaws

Article 12. Rules and Procedures Section 12-1. Status of Rules and Procedures

Rules and procedures shall have the force of bylaws, except that where a rule or procedure conflicts with these bylaws, the bylaws shall take precedence. Rules and procedures may be overridden by a 2/3 vote of the General Assembly.

Section 12-2. Adoption of Rules and Procedures

12-2.1 Initiation of rules and procedures

Rules and procedures shall be initiated by the Coordinating Committee or by any other Standing Committee or Working Group of the General Assembly ("initiating body"). A proposed rule or procedure shall be submitted by the initiating body to the Bylaws Committee and Coordinating committee for review and possible amendment using the process described in this Article.

12-2.2 Review and approval of rules and procedures

a) The Bylaws Committee shall review the proposed rule or procedure for clarity and internal consistency, to minimize ambiguity, and for consistency with these bylaws and with existing rules and procedures.

b) The Coordinating Committee shall solicit feedback from each county organization through the regional representatives and county councils, and from affected Standing Committees and Working Groups through their co-coordinators.

c) The initiating body shall review any proposed changes for consistency with the intent of the proposed rule or procedure.

The review process shall continue until the Bylaws Committee, the Coordinating Committee, and the initiating body have each approved the final version by a 2/3 vote, or until the proposal is withdrawn by the initiating body, or is rejected by a 2/3 vote of the Coordinating Committee. If the proposed rule or procedure is approved. it shall be ratified by the General Assembly before taking effect.

12-2.3 General Assembly clarifications and concerns

Once approved, new rule or procedure shall be placed on the agenda of the next General Assembly such that agenda notification requirements can be satisfied. A limited amount of agenda time, but no less than 15 minutes, shall be allocated for each new rule or procedure. The agenda time shall be used to request clarification and to express concerns or affirmations. No amendments, excepting those for the correction of errors, shall be in order.

12-2.4 Ratification of rules and procedures

At the end of the time period, the General Assembly shall be polled for outstanding concerns. If 1/5 or more of the delegates present, as determined by the most recent quorum count, request that the rule or procedure be taken up by the General Assembly, the rule or procedure shall be placed on the agenda of the current (time permitting) or next General Assembly, where it shall be treated as a business item, subject to a 2/3 vote; alternatively, the initiator may choose to withdraw the rule or procedure. If the rule or procedure is not withdrawn, and polling of the General Assembly results in fewer than 1/5 of the delegates with outstanding concerns, the rule or procedure is ratified, and shall remain in effect until amended or revoked by this process.

In summary, the rule or procedure may:

a) be withdrawn by its initiator,

b) be suspended pending full consideration by the General Assembly,

c) take effect until amended or revoked.

Section 12-3. Amendment or revocation of rules and procedures

Rules and procedures shall be amended or revoked through the same process as approval of new rules and procedures.

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