ARTICLE I – NAME
This organization shall be known as the FREEDOM PARTY AMERICA (FPA).
ARTICLE II – PLACE OF BUSINESS
The principal place of business shall be the State of Ohio; members may reside elsewhere.
ARTICLE III – OBJECT
The Corporation is organized under the provisions of the Ohio Non-Profit Corporation Code for the following purposes: To create a state and national political party; to assist party members in winning election to state and federal congressional or other office; to form and direct political policy to be brought to congressional or other offices by party members elected to those offices.
ARTICLE IV – MEMBERSHIP
Membership is accomplished by making application, payment of dues to the Membership Committee, State or Regional officer and acceptance by the applicant of the Bylaws and Standing Rules of FPA. All members of FPA are considered active members who have paid their dues during current calendar year.
Section 1 – Regular Membership
- Open to any person eighteen (18) years of age or older.
- Shall be entitled to one (1) vote and hold office.
ARTICLE V — NATIONAL COMMITTEE OFFICERS/BOARD OF DIRECTORS/LEGISLATIVE POLICY AND AGENDA COUNCIL
Section 1 – National Committee Officers
The elected officers shall be a President, a Vice President, a Recording Secretary and a Treasurer. Until such time as all fifty states have active party organizations in place with memberships exceeding 500 members in each individual state, the President of the National Committee, as well as the other three officers, shall be appointed by the party founders, who are Warren Edstrom, Jeffery S. Dover and others we may add.
Upon reaching the national organizational goal stated above, on the first Tuesday in the month of January following attainment of that goal, and on the same Tuesday each year following this day, the National President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer shall be elected by a vote of the presidents of the state committees.
Section 2 – Board of Directors
The National Board of Directors shall consist of eleven members elected by the state presidents. Initially, the Board shall be chosen by the party founders. In February of 2016 the first election of board members shall take place. Board members shall serve five-year terms to serve as advisors to the LAPC and national leadership in practical management matters.
Section 3 – Legislative Agenda and Policy Council
Two members of the State Committees from each state shall be elected to the Legislative Agenda and Policy Council (LAPC). They shall choose from their number a Chairman, Vice Chairman and a Secretary. The national committee shall provide a staff recorder. In addition, all party members elected to national congressional office shall be members of this council. However, those members of congress or other elective office may not vote on policy, but only advise LAPC councilors. Neither may any former member of congress serve as an LAPC councilor. The council members shall discuss and vote on policy and direction, which will be binding upon the party members who hold elected office in the US congress. In support of this policy creation and direction, the council will meet once monthly or additionally as circumstances may require. The meeting will take place at the National HQ’s, but participation via skype, telephone or other electronic media will be acceptable as well. Following the establishment of any modification to existing policy or the creation of new policy, all party members sitting in the US Congress will receive immediate updates and direction. Additionally, the revisions shall be placed in a timely fashion on the party’s website, available to the general public. The council shall be certain that anyone going to the party website can read the party’s current legislative agenda goals and platform ideals.
Section 4 – OATH
All party members, upon attaining election to party offices or upon running for election to state or national office shall be required to take an oath of allegiance to the FPA, its platform and legislative agenda. Taking the oath they will further recognize explicitly that once installed in party, state or federal office, should they fail to uphold that agenda or should they deviate from the party’s platform, they will be expelled from the party. They shall not initiate legislation without first obtaining the party’s prior approval, nor shall they link to or co-sponsor legislation from or with any other member of congress without prior written approval from the party policy leadership.
ARTICLE VI – STATE COMMITTEE OFFICERS/BOARD OF DIRECTORS/EXECUTIVE COUNCIL
Section1– State Officers
The elected officers shall be a President, a Vice President, a Recording Secretary and a Treasurer.
- These officers shall perform the duties prescribed in the By-Laws and Standing Rules and by the Parliamentary authority adopted by the FPA.
- State officers shall be elected by the general membership at the November General Membership meeting.
- Shall be a Regular member in good standing.
- No member shall hold more than one (1) elected office concurrently.
- The officers shall be elected to serve for one (1) year or until their successors are appointed or elected. Their term of office shall begin on January 1.
- No member shall be eligible to serve more than four (4) consecutive terms in the same office at the State level.
- In the event an officer cannot complete their term, an appointment shall be made by the Executive Council until a General Membership meeting and election can be held.
Section 2 – Board of Directors
The Board of Directors shall consist of three (3) other members elected by the membership.
- Board of Trustee members are subject to the same requirements and electoral procedures as State Officers as detailed in Article V, Section 1.
Section 3 – Executive Council
The Executive Council shall consist of three (3) elected delegates, one from any of the five (5) Regional Boards, one from the State officers and one from the Board of Directors.
Section 4 – Obligation
- All State elected officers, Directors and regional delegates are required to attend scheduled Executive Council and General Membership meetings and may be asked to resign their position if they are absent for two (2) out of three (3) or two (2) meetings in a row. The membership will vote on the removal.
- General Membership Meetings
The General Membership shall meet in November. Notice of time, date and place shall appear in an FPA publication at least one (1) month prior to such meetings. Time and place shall be determined by the Board of Directors.
General Membership meeting may not be canceled but may be rescheduled between 45–60 days after the original scheduled date. NOTICE OF RESCHEDULED MEETING DATE, TIME AND PLACE SHALL BE GIVEN AS SOON AS IT IS EVIDENT THAT IT MUST BE RESCHEDULED.
- Special Meetings
Special meetings may be requested by two or more members of the Executive Council.
All requests shall go through the Board of Directors
The Board of Directors shall determine the time and place with a ten (10) day prior notice.
ARTICLE VI- ATTENDANCE
Section 1 – Quorum
- General Membership Meeting: Shall consist of those members present and at least two (2) elected State Officers.
- Executive Council Meeting: Shall consist of those delegates present and at least two (2) elected State Officers.
Section 2 – Attendance
- General Membership Meeting shall be open to members and guests.
- Executive Council Meeting shall be open to members of the Exec Council only.
ARTICLE VII – ELECTIONS
Section 1– Date of Elections
- A. The election of all State Officers shall be held at the November General Membership meeting.
- Regional elections shall take place between October 1 and December 31 of that year.
Section 2 – State Nominations
- Nominations shall be sent in writing by the Nominating Committee no later than September 1.
- Nominations shall be published at least ten (10) days prior to the November General Membership meeting.
- Additional nominations may be made from the floor at the November General Membership meeting.
Section 3 – Voting
- Only active members prior to October 1 may vote in the State election of officers.
- A paper ballot shall be used in all State elections which shall list each office to be elected. FREEDOM PARTY AMERICA DRAFT BY- LAWS
The ballot shall list the candidates nominated for those offices and there shall be one blank space for each office for any “Write-in” candidates.
- The election results for each office shall be read aloud to the assembly and the number of votes for each candidate shall be duly recorded.
- Absentee ballots are invalid.
ARTICLE VIII – FINANCES
Section 1 – Administrative Funds
- Shall be all revenue received from membership dues and special programs.
- All Membership dues shall be determined as needed by the General Membership, upon recommendation by the Executive Council
- All Membership dues shall be payable to the Treasurer of FPA.
- Dues shall not be pro-rated for any portion of the year; however, dues received October1 and thereafter shall entitle the member to full membership privileges commencing with January 1 of the following year.
- Treasurer may sign checks as approved by the Board of Directors. Checks in excess of $500 will require the co-signature of the FPA President.
Section 2 – Depository of Funds
- A. The Treasurer shall determine the official depository(ies).
ARTICLE IX – STANDING AND SPECIAL COMMITTEES
Section 1– Standing Committees
- Standing Committees are those committees which are directly concerned with the management and/or operation of FPA.
- Chairmen of the Standing Committees as listed in the Standing Rules shall be appointed by the President with the exception of the Nominating Committee.
- Chairman of the Nominating Committees shall be nominated by the FPA President. The nominees shall be approved by a majority vote of the Board of Directors at the Executive Council Meeting during the first quarter of the calendar year.
Section 2 – Nominating Committee shall preside over the nomination and election of State Officers and uphold election rules.
Section 3 – Additional Standing and Special Committees
Additional Standing and Special Committees and their duties may be established under the Standing Rules. Chairs of the Standing and Special Committees may be appointed by the President.
ARTICLE X – ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE
Section 1 – Membership and Representation
- A. The General Membership may be organized into local Regional Chapters functioning independently, and at the same time collectively with FPA, who shall be the parent organization. 4
All paperwork generated by the State Officers, state standing and special committee chair people, is the property of the Freedom Party America, State of Ohio.
All paperwork generated by local Regional Chapter Officers and committee chair people is the property of the local Regional Chapter.
- Membership in FPA shall earn the member the privilege of participating in the Regional Chapter of their choice, regardless of residence.
- C. These Regional Chapters shall be known as (name of Regional) Chapter of FREEDOM PARTY AMERICA.
Regional Chapters shall keep minutes of all Chapter general, committee and executive meetings. Said minutes shall be Chapter property, but when necessary, subject to review by State Officers.
Meeting times and locations shall be published in a Chapter newsletter, local publication or any State publication, or electronic media.
- Only one (1) Regional Chapter may exist at one time in any given Regional area as established by the State.
- Acceptance of a Regional Chapter shall be realized by their acceptance of the By-Laws and Standing Rules of FPA.
- Each Regional Chapter shall elect three (3) delegates to represent their Chapter on the Executive Council. The Regional President may be one of these delegates to the Executive Council. Alternate delegates may be selected if attendance by the elected delegates is not possible. Delegates’ names and addresses shall be submitted in writing to the State Corresponding Secretary no later than the Executive Council Meeting in the first quarter of the calendar year.
- Monies earned by Regional Chapter activities shall be the sole property of the Regional Chapter earning such monies. Upon dissolution of any Regional Chapter, such funds shall become the property of FPA.
ARTICLE XI – MAINTAINING ORDER AND FIDELITY TO THE PLATFORM
Section 1 – State and Regional Meetings
The State and each Regional Chapter has the right to control the membership while the meetings are in progress. All members shall conduct themselves in a manner as to best represent the goals of FPA. Membership may be terminated at the State or Chapter level where the Officers and Members determine a member bas caused, acted or performed an act unbecoming or in contradiction to the purpose or goals of FPA.
- A. It is the duty of the Presiding Officer to compel the assembly to observe order.
- When members are disorderly, noisy, attack another members motives, speak to another member directly instead of through the Presiding Officer, or are otherwise disruptive to the assembly, the Presiding Officer or any member, by addressing the Presiding Officer, may demand the member to come to order. If the member continues to be disruptive, the Presiding Officer may ask the offending member to leave the meeting.
- The offending member or any member may appeal the decision of the Presiding Officer.
The Presiding Officer will then take an immediate vote of the assembly. A majority vote upholds the decision of the Presiding Officer.
- State Committees support and uphold the policy dictates of the National Committee’s LAPC and agree that to the extent possible, related policy questions in the various states are to be treated by party members holding legislative office in a manner which represents the spirit of the party platform and related national policy question dictates.
Section 2 – General Conduct
FPA has the ultimate right to make and enforce its own rules and to require that all members refrain from conduct detrimental or contrary to FPA and its purposes. Disciplinary actions that FPA can impose on members are reprimands, suspensions or expulsions. In the case of expulsion, the person may not attend any regional or State meetings or functions. Disciplinary action that FPA can impose on a Regional Chapter is suspension or expulsion. No Regional Chapter on suspension shall have Executive Council voting privileges.
Section 3 – Individual Reprimands, Suspensions or Expulsions
- These grievances shall be submitted in writing to the FPA Executive Council or in the instance of a member elected to the US Congress, to the LAPC chairman, until a special Grievance Committee is appointed, following the procedures as outlined in Article IX, Section 2.
- Reprimands and Suspensions require a majority vote of the membership in attendance and voting, or in the instance of a member elected to the US Congress, by a majority vote of the LAPC membership.
ARTICLE XII AMENDMENTS TO THE BYLAWS
Section 1 – Proposed Amendment(s)
- Shall be referred to the Bylaws Committee, in writing, for review and recommendation.
Section 2 – Role of the Executive Council
- Shall have referred to it, by the Bylaws Committee, all proposed amendments to the FPA Bylaws and shall submit its recommendations~ based upon those or the Bylaws Committee~ to the General Membership.
Section 3 – Distribution
- Notice of the proposed changes shall be made to all members in an FPA publication at least two (2) weeks preceding a General membership meeting for which time has been scheduled for the purpose of voting on the proposed amendments.
Section 4 – Approval for Adoption
- Amendments shall require a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the general membership voting at the General Membership meeting.
ARTICLE XIII – PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY
The rules contained in the current edition of ROBERTS RULES OF ORDER, NEWLY REVISED, shall govern the FPA in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with the Corporate Charter, By-Laws, any special rules of order and the Standing Rules FPA may adopt.
THESE BY-LAWS REVOKE ALL PREVIOUS VERSIONS OF THE FREEDOM PARTY AMERICA’S BY-LAWS AND OTHER VERSIONS ARE NULL AND VOID