Article I – NAME, IDENTITY, STRUCTURE
Section 1. Name. The name of this organization shall be the Libertarian Party of Hillsborough County (Florida), hereinafter referred to as the “LPHC”.
Section 2. Structure. The LPHC is a political organization constituted by its membership, directed by its officers, governed by its Business Meetings, and associated with the Libertarian Party of Florida, hereinafter referred to as the “LPF”.
Section 3. Bona fide party. The LPHC is a Political Committee under the laws of the state of Florida, authorized to receive political contributions. The LPHC accepts political contributions in the name of the LPHC or the Libertarian Party of Hillsborough County.
Section 4. Device. The official device of the LPHC and all candidates nominated by the LPHC shall be silhouette of Hillsborough county with party name and logos associated with. Additionally, alternative logos and/or graphics, including, but not limited to the LPF porcupine, the LP National symbols, the Statue of Liberty, may be used on promotional materials.
Section 5. Address. The mailing address of the LPHC shall be that designated by the Chairperson of the LPHC.
Article II – STATEMENT OF PURPOSE, FUNCTIONS AND PRINCIPLES
Section 1. Purpose. The Mission of the LPHC is to defend and advance the causes of individual liberty, minimum government, and states’ constitutional powers by engaging in political action affecting the residents of Hillsborough County.
Section 2. Functions. The primary functions of the LPHC are:
Section 3. Principles. The LPHC affirms the following principles:
That all people possess unalienable natural rights, and that among these are rights to life, liberty, justly acquired property, and self-governance.
That the only moral basis of government is the preservation and protection of unalienable natural rights.
That no person or institution, public or private, has the right to initiate the use of physical force, coercion, or fraud against another person, and that all people are bound, without contract to abstain from infringing upon the natural rights of other people.
That all people are entitled to choose their own lifestyles, so far as they do not forcibly impose their values on others.
That the voluntary and unrestricted exchange of goods and services is fundamental to a peaceful and harmonious society.
ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP
Section 1. Membership Established. The LPHC hereby establishes membership in the Libertarian Party within the state of Florida, USA as well as the intention to voluntarily continue association with the Libertarian Party of Florida [LPF] on an annual basis.
Section 2. Membership Requirements. Membership in the LPHC is open to all registered Libertarian Party voters of Hillsborough County who have completed the membership application and acknowledged and sign bi-annually that they agree to the non-aggression principle hereinafter called the NAP. The LPHC may implement, by majority vote at convention or at a regular business meeting, an additional minimum annual contribution to the LPHC to establish membership, in accordance with law.
Section 3. Membership Privileges. Members in good standing have the right to meaningfully participate in all meetings and conventions of the LPHC. Non-voting membership is open to non-party affiliated registered voters residing at least part of the year in Hillsborough County .
Section 4. Membership Suspension. The voting members at any LPHC Business Meeting or convention shall have the authority to suspend, terminate or refuse membership in the LPHC to any individual, who is otherwise a member of the LPF, by a three-fourths (¾) responding vote. In such event, the LPHC shall immediately notify the individual by certified mail of the suspension, termination or refusal, and the reasons for such, affording the individual the right to appeal to the LPHC at one of its next two Membership Meetings. The voting members of the LPHC may uphold the suspension, termination or refusal by majority vote at said appeal. Upon appeal or the expiration of the time allotted for appeal, the decision of the LPHC to suspend, terminate or refuse membership in the LPHC shall be final and binding for a period of one year, after which time the individual may reapply for membership in the LPHC by written request, subject to majority vote of the Membership.
ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS
Section 1. Officers. The Officers of the LPHC shall be a Chairperson, a Vice Chairperson, a Secretary, a Treasurer, and the Chairperson of each Standing Committee. The offices of Chairperson and Vice Chairperson shall not be combined. The offices of Secretary and Treasurer may be separate or combined. The Officers in place at the time of adoption of these by-laws shall remain in office until the next regularly-scheduled election of Officers.
Section 2. Election of Officers. The Officers of LPHC shall be elected at the Annual Convention for a term of two years. The Officer nominee who receives the most votes in each race shall be elected. Officers shall be selected by secret ballot unless there is only one nomination for the office, in which case election may be made by acclamation. In all elections, members may cast a “None Of The Above” (NOTA) vote. If NOTA receives a plurality* of votes, (*the number of votes cast for a candidate who receives more than any other but does not receive an absolute majority.) then a new election shall be called for that position, and the prior nominees shall be ineligible for nomination. Officers shall take office upon adjournment of the Annual Convention and serve thereafter until adjournment of the next Annual Convention. Nomination for office shall be made by voting members of the LPHC. Officer nominees must voluntarily accept nomination.
Section 3. Term of Office. Executive Committee Officers (Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer and Secretary) shall serve a term of two years*. Other voting Committee Chair as members of the Executive Committee shall serve a term of one year. There shall be no limit on the number of consecutive terms a member of the Executive Committee may serve. Terms of office begins at the close of the meeting at which the election was held. Members agree to assist in the training and smooth transition of the newly elected Executive Committee Member. Should election to the Executive Committee begin during an existing term of that office, the member shall serve out the balance of that term.
Section 4. Roles and Responsibilities of Officers.
Chairperson. The Chairperson is the chief executive officer of the LPHC with full authority to direct its business and affairs, including hiring and discharging volunteers and paid personnel, subject to the LPHC Executive Committee’s express policies and directives issued in the exercise of the Executive Committee’s ultimate control, and management of LPHC affairs, properties, and funds. The Chair shall be a signature on all bank accounts.
The Chairperson shall prepare the agenda for meetings and assign tasks, objectives and goals to Committees.
The Chairperson shall preside at Executive Committee Meetings, General Membership Meetings, and other Committee Meetings not specifically presided over by a Committee Chairperson. In absence of the Chairperson, the Chairperson may appoint a Voting Member to preside over a meeting. The Chairperson may make Motions and/or Second Motions but may only vote in the event of a tie vote.
The Chairperson may establish and assign tasks to new Standing Committees. The Chairperson may establish and assign tasks to Ad Hoc Committees for short term projects and appoint a Committee Chairperson to an Ad Hoc Committee. The Chairperson may appoint Members of the LPHC to serve on a Standing Committee and Ad Hoc Committee.
Vice Chairperson. The Vice Chairperson shall assist the Chairperson as requested to meet the goals and objectives of the Libertarian Party of Hillsborough County, and serve as presiding officer in the absence of the Chairperson. The Vice Chairperson shall be responsible for the training and coordination of committee persons in coordination with the Chairperson or his/her designee.
Secretary. The Secretary shall record the minutes of all LPHC meetings and conventions. The Secretary shall be the custodian of these by-laws and their amendments, the minutes of all meetings and conventions, committee reports, standing rules, and correspondence designated by the Chairperson and responsible for storing such information with view only access to voting members within a reasonable period of time.
Treasurer. The Treasurer shall be custodian of all funds. The Treasurer shall be the chief financial officer responsible for the filing of all campaign finance forms for the LPHC. The fiscal year of the LPHC shall begin on January 1st of each year and end on December 31st of the same year. The treasury of the LPHC shall be audited at the end of the fiscal year by either the Chairperson or another member of the executive committee, or by a professional accounting firm selected by the executive committee. The audit will be reported to the general membership at the first regular business meeting following the audit’s conclusion.
Section 5. Standing Committees. The Standing Committees shall be: Campaign Committee, Communications Committee, Finance Committee, Membership Committee, and Political Action Committee. Each Committee’s tasks and responsibilities are assigned by the Chair of the LPHC and/or the Executive Committee of the LPHC.
Section 6. Removal of Officers. A motion to recall a member of the Executive Committee may be brought before the LPHC Executive Committee by a Voting Member claiming that the Member’s actions have damaged the Mission of the LPHC. A second shall be required to bring the motion for a vote. The Motion passes upon receiving at least two-thirds written vote of the Executive Committee. If the motion is passed by the Executive Committee, then the motion is presented to the Membership at the next General Membership Meeting at which time the Member must have the opportunity to address, orally or in writing, the motion to recall. Upon receiving at least two-thirds written vote of the General Membership in a closed (members only) session the motion shall pass. Recalled from office shall not affect the Member’s membership status in the LPHC nor shall it affect that Member’s eligibility for any other position on the Executive Committee.
Section 7. Vacancies. In the event of removal or resignation of any officer, the Chairperson shall notify all LPHC members in a reasonable time. A special election for the vacant position shall be held at the next scheduled Membership Meeting in accordance with Article IV, Section 2; except the newly elected officer shall take office immediately upon conclusion of the election. The Chairperson may appoint a member as an “interim” officer in order to fulfill the duties of the vacant position, until the position is filled by special election at the next Membership Meeting.
Section 8. Standing Rules. If adopted, any Standing Rules of the LPHC shall be in harmony with these by-laws, shall be written, and shall be made available for general use. Standing Rules may be adopted by two-thirds (⅔) vote of the officers or by majority vote at convention. Standing Rules may be repealed by two-thirds (⅔) vote at a Business Meeting or by majority vote at convention.
Section 9. Authority to Contract. The Chairperson shall have the sole authority to expend LPHC funds for goods or services without prior approval granted at a regular business meeting. Such expenditures and authority to contract shall extend only to the day-to-day operations of the LPHC, however, the sum of all such expenditures shall not exceed $300, or 10% of the operating fund ledger balance, whichever is greater, in any calendar month. Any expenditure(s) which exceeds that amount shall require majority approval of the Officers.
Section 10. Officer Meetings. A regularly scheduled meeting of the Officers shall be held at least once per calendar month. The Chair may call additional or emergency meetings at his/her discretion. All meetings shall be conducted in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order. A quorum shall consist of at least one half of, the Executive Committee Members. Officer meetings may be held in person or by electronic means at the discretion of the Chair. All officer meetings shall be open to all LPHC members, and a reasonable amount of time shall be allocated on the agenda for member comments. The date, time, location, and agenda of each regularly-scheduled Officers Meeting shall be made available to all LPHC members at least three days in advance of the meeting. Each officer shall have one vote on all business matters, except in the event of a tie vote, the Chairperson’s vote shall prevail. The Chair may call for a vote of the Executive Committee between scheduled meetings via electronic communication. All members of the Executive Committee shall be noticed of the motion and given three days to respond. Executive Committee Members shall be given the opportunity to discuss any motion. The motion passes when receiving a simple majority unless otherwise specified in these Bylaws. Record of the motion, second and roll call vote shall be included in the minutes.
Section 11. Refer to Membership. At the discretion of the Chairperson, any motion may be transferred from the Officer’s Meeting agenda to the Membership Meeting agenda at any time for vote by the Membership. Additionally, any Officer may move that an item of business be Referred to Membership, and said item shall be transferred to the Membership Meeting agenda upon second and majority vote by the officers. If passed, the motion to Refer to Membership shall supersede and nullify the vote by the officers on the prior motion in question.
Section 12. Executive Session. The use of Executive Session by officers is prohibited, except for business regarding pending or potential legal action by or against the LPHC, or matters requiring disclosure of a member or employee’s confidential personal, medical or financial information.
ARTICLE V – MEMBERSHIP MEETINGS
Section 1. Membership Meetings. The LPHC shall hold a Membership Meeting each month at a regular date and time. Reasonable notice shall be given to all LPHC members. The Chairperson shall determine the meeting’s agenda, subject to change by majority vote at the meeting.
Section 2. Purpose. The purpose of the Membership Meetings shall be to guide and review the actions of the Officers, and to conduct business outside of the scope of authority of the Officers.
Section 3. Procedure. Membership Meetings shall be conducted in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order. Membership meetings shall be open to the public, however only LPHC members in good standing shall vote and be recognized.
ARTICLE VI – CONVENTIONS
Section 1. Annual Convention. The LPHC shall hold an Annual Convention. The Annual Convention shall be used to elect Officers of the LPHC, to nominate candidates of the LPHC, to make an annual reporting of the LPHC’s financial condition, to amend these by-laws,
Section 2. Attendance and Participation. Attendance at the Annual Convention is open to all LPHC members and/or voters registered in Hillsborough as Libertarians as per the Supervisor of Elections office.
Section 3. Quorum. The quorum shall be four LPHC Voting Members.
Section 4. Notice of Convention. The LPHC shall publish the date, time, and location, proposed rules, and proposed agenda of the Annual Convention at least fourteen days prior to such convention by a method reasonably certain to reach such members.
Section 5. Duties of Officers. The Chairperson of the LPHC shall serve as the Chairperson of the LPHC Annual Convention. The Secretary of the LPHC shall serve as the Secretary of the LPHC Annual Convention. In the event that either the Chairperson or the Secretary of the LPHC is unable to serve respectively as Chairperson and Secretary of the Annual Convention, such positions and responsibilities shall devolve, in cardinal order, to the Vice Chairperson and Treasurer of the LPHC.
Section 6. Order of Business. The order of business of the Annual Convention shall include, but is not limited to the following:
After the Call to Order, the first item of business is to credential and seat LPF members residing in Hillsborough County to the Annual Convention.
The second item of business is the reading and approval of the minutes of the first preceding Annual Convention.
The third item of business is to adopt rules for the Annual Convention.
The fourth item of business is to adopt an agenda for the Annual Convention. The Chairperson shall submit proposed rules and an agenda for initial consideration. The attending members of the LPF shall adopt said rules and agenda by majority vote. In the absence of the adoption of rules and/or an agenda, the Chairperson shall adopt rules and an agenda on his/her own initiative.
The fifth item of business is the annual financial report by the Treasurer of the LPHC.
Section 7. Motions in Writing. All motions to amend these By-Laws shall be in writing and submitted to the Chairperson at least 15 days prior to the convention.
Section 8. Credentials. The Secretary shall be responsible for verifying the party registration and membership status of each voter at convention. No voting by proxy shall be permitted.
Section 9. Special Conventions. Special Conventions may be convened by a majority vote at the Business Meeting, or shall be convened by the Chairperson of the LPHC upon written request or petition of over one-half (½) of all current members of the LPHC. The Chairperson shall provide notice of the dates, times, location, and particular subject matter of Special Convention to all members of the LPHC at least fourteen (14) days prior to such event. Special Conventions are limited to the subject matter agreed upon, and shall otherwise be run by the same provisions which govern the Annual Convention.
ARTICLE VII – ADOPTION, AMENDMENTS
Section 1. Adoption. These by-laws shall be adopted when approved by a majority of LPHC members attending General Membership Meeting. These by-laws shall take effect upon the adjournment of the meeting in which they were adopted.
Section 2. Amendments. The Bylaws of the LPHC may be amended at any General Membership Meeting. The motion to amend must be made and seconded by Voting Members and passed by a two-thirds vote of Voting Members.
Section 3. Affiliation with the LPF. The LPHC hereby ratifies the by-laws of the LPF, and authorizes the Officers to certify such by submitting a Petition for Affiliation and a copy of these by-laws to the LPF.
Adopted by the membership at the General Membership Meeting dated March 8, 2017.