Bylaws Review

At the next DEC meeting on September 9th at 7pm at St. Stephens Church (2750 McFarlane Rd, Coconut Grove, FL 33133) we will be voting on four amendments to our Bylaws. Please review the Bylaws committee recommendations detailed below along with the attached documents. These recommended bylaws amendments are part of a months-long process the Bylaws committee conducted. We held several listening sessions where we heard many good suggestions and recommendations from many DEC members.

First Recommendation: Moving from a precinct system to a district system
Rationale: Over 75% of the nearly 800 precincts in Miami-Dade have no DEC representation. We recommend our DEC move to a District System of 55 DEC Election Districts which would be arranged by roughly splitting each of the 13 County Commission District into 4-5 districts. This would allow us to more effectively organize the county. If we were to move to a district system today with our current membership, we would have 50 of the 55 proposed DEC election districts covered. We would only need to identify 5 more leaders to have complete coverage of Miami-Dade County. Once we do that, every registered Democrat in Miami-Dade would be represented by the DEC, and would have a local point of contact so they can get involved right away.
This 13 minute video will explain the change:
  • This is a Summary Document that goes into further detail on the proposed changes. Please review this document. Elected Members will now be elected by DEC districts. The changes will still allow for precinct captains to be appointed but they will be considered Associate Members.
  • This is a copy of the Bylaws changes red-lined.
  • This is the specific precinct assignments to districts in excel format. This also includes an analysis of our current membership and what district they would be in.
  • The Supervisor of Elections created a map of our DEC Districts. The districts where initially drawn around county commission boundaries and then adjusted to ensure three factors: neighborhood integrity, continuity of the district, and overall voter registration was within 10% of the county average (an FDP requirement).
  • And a basic online interactive map of the DEC precincts so you can visualize the change. The red lines are the precinct boundaries. The colored dots shows the grouping of precincts that makeup a particular DEC election district. 

Second Recommendation: Reducing quorum to 25% to align our requirement with recent FDP Bylaws changes
Rationale: The Florida Democratic Party recently changed the minimum quorum requirement for DECs to 25%. We recommend aligning our bylaws with this recent change so we can ensure that we reach quorum and can always conduct business. (bylaws redline can be found here)

Third Recommendation: Amending process for receiving an excused absence
Rationale: This change will require members to text or email the Credentials Chair to request an excused absence. This will centralize and streamline the process. (bylaws redline can be found here)

Fourth Recommendation: Adding a Values Statement after the DEC Bylaws preamble and before Article I.
Rationale: The values statement is based on resolutions the DEC has already passed. This amendment will enshrine those values into our bylaws. (bylaws amendment resolution can be found here)