BYLAWS OF

THE LIBERTARIAN PARTY OF RHODE ISLAND

 

ARTICLE I

Name

The name of this organization is THE LIBERTARIAN PARTY OF RHODE ISLAND, hereinafter referred to as the "LPRI."

 

ARTICLE II

Purpose, Platform and Affiliation

Section 1. Purpose

The purpose of the LPRI is to advocate for liberty and promote libertarian political ideals within the State of Rhode Island consistent within the LPRI Platform and Statement of Principles by:

a. Disseminating information about libertarian ideals and principles;

b. Nominating and promoting candidates for local, state and national public office;

c. Promoting and coordinating district and local organizations throughout the state; and

d. Selecting and sending delegates to Libertarian Party national conventions.

Section 2. Platform and Statement of Principles

a. The Statement of Principles affirms the philosophy upon which the LPRI is founded, by which it shall be sustained, and through which liberty shall prevail.  The enduring importance of the Statement of Principles requires that it may be amended only by a vote of seven-eighths (7/8) of all registered delegates at an annual convention.

b. The LPRI Platform shall include, but not be limited to, the Statement of Principles and further delineation of those principles in the form of planks.

c. The approved LPRI Platform shall serve as the basis of all future platforms.  The existing Platform may be amended only at annual conventions.  Additional planks, or amendments to planks, must be approved by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote.  A platform plank may be deleted by simple majority vote of all registered delegates at a convention.

d. In the absence of an approved LPRI Platform and Statement of Principles, the LPRI will adopt the national Libertarian Party Platform and Statement of Principles until a Platform and Statement of Principles is approved in accordance with this section.

Section 3. Affiliation

The LPRI shall be affiliated with the national Libertarian Party (LP).

 

ARTICLE III

Members

Section 1. LPRI Membership

LPRI members shall be Rhode Island residents who have pledged that they “oppose the initiation of force to achieve political or social goals,” hereinafter referred to as the libertarian pledge, and whose dues are current. Members must be at least eighteen years old.

Section 2. Affiliate Membership

Affiliate members shall be Rhode Island residents who are current, paid members of the national Libertarian Party.

Section 3. Associate Member

Associate members are LPRI members that reside outside the state of RI. They do not have voting rights nor are they eligible to serve as officers.

Section 4. Dues

The Executive Committee may create levels of membership and shall determine the contribution or dues levels for such memberships.

Section 5. Rights of Members

Providing they have been members for at least 30 days prior to the LPRI state convention, LPRI members and affiliate members shall have the right to vote at all state and special conventions. Providing they have been members for at least 30 days prior to the LPRI state convention, LPRI members shall have the right to be nominated for and serve on the Executive Committee, as a Director or member of a committee, as a delegate to the LP national convention, and to seek endorsement of the LPRI to run for political office.

Section 6. Termination of Membership

The membership of any member shall terminate upon occurrence of any of the following events:

1.     Resignation of the member.

2.     Failure of a member to pay annual dues.

3.     A determination of the Executive Committee by a four-fifths (4/5) majority vote that the member has failed to adhere to the Statement of Principles and libertarian pledge.

 

ARTICLE IV

Officers

Section 1. Officers

The officers of the LPRI shall be the Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary, and Treasurer.

Section 2. Nominations and Elections. 

Officers will be nominated at the LPRI Convention, elected by majority vote of the delegate assembly, shall take office immediately following the close of the LPRI convention, and shall serve until the end of the next convention for which their term expires.   All officer nominees must be LPRI members eligible to vote at the LPRI convention. The Chair and Secretary shall be elected in odd-numbered years.  The Vice-Chair and Treasurer shall be elected in even numbered years.  Except for the first year in which this bylaws revision is adopted, all officers will be elected and serve terms as prescribed in Article IV Section 3.

Section 3. Term of Office.

All officers shall serve a term of two years, except for the first year in which this bylaws revision is adopted, wherein the Vice-Chair and Treasurer will serve for one year, and the Chair and Secretary will serve the standard two-year term.

Section 4. Limitations

No two offices may be combined or held by the same individual.

Section 5. Duties of Officers

a.      The Chair shall: preside at all LPRI conventions and all meetings of the Executive Committee; be the chief executive officer of the LPRI; be the official contact and spokesperson for the LPRI; and approve all LPRI publications.

b.     The Vice-Chair shall: assist the Chair and perform the duties of the Chair when required; be responsible for the internal committee work of the LPRI; and represent the committees at executive sessions in the absence of committee directors. The Vice-Chair shall also serve as an ex officio member of all committees.

c.      The Secretary shall: maintain the LPRI membership list; take minutes and set the agenda of all conventions and Executive Committee meetings; keep other records as required by the Chair or Executive Committee or by these Bylaws; and serve as registered agent for the LPRI.  The Secretary shall also serve as the secretary of the Membership Committee.

d.     The Treasurer shall: receive, disburse, and account for all LPRI funds under the supervision of the Chair and the Executive Committee.  The Treasurer shall prepare an annual report and make available any financial information required by the Executive Committee.  The LPRI will not incur any outstanding debt.

Section 6. Removal from Office

An officer may be removed from that position in accordance with Article V Section 6.

Section 7. Vacancies

The Executive Committee will fill vacancies as prescribed in Article V Section 7.

Section 8. Resignation

The Executive Committee will handle resignations as prescribed in Article V Section 8.

 

ARTICLE V

Executive Committee

Section 1. Composition

The Executive Committee shall be composed of the Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, and one At-Large member.

Section 2. At-Large Member

An At-Large member will be nominated and elected at the annual convention to serve a term of one year. The At-Large nominee must be an LPRI member eligible to vote at the convention. The At-Large member shall assist any of the officers in performing their duties when required.

Section 3. Conflicts of Interest

No member of the Executive Committee shall be a member of, or hold a position of trust in, another political party, or openly support a candidate of another political party in opposition to a candidate of the LPRI.  Such involvement will result in immediate termination from the Executive Committee.

Section 4. Responsibilities

The Executive Committee shall control and manage all affairs, properties, social media accounts, web domains, financial accounts and funds of the LPRI.  The Executive Committee may enact policies to implement these Bylaws, policies which shall be recorded with the Bylaws.

Section 5. Membership Dues

The Executive Committee shall set membership dues and levels, as prescribed in Article III Section 4.

Section 6. Termination

An officer or At-Large member may be removed from that position for cause by a four-fifths (4/5) majority vote of the Executive Committee.

Section 7. Vacancies

The Executive Committee may, by a three-fifths (3/5) majority vote, appoint a new officer or At-Large member if a vacancy occurs, except as defined in Article VIII section 6, to complete the term of the office vacated.

Section 8. Resignation

A member of the Executive Committee resigning his or her office shall notify the Executive Committee at least seven (7) days before the effective date of his or her resignation.  If the member does not submit a formal resignation, the unexcused absence from three consecutive monthly Executive Committee meetings shall be considered resignation, effective immediately upon adjournment of the third missed meeting, as prescribed in Article VI Section 7

Section 9. Account Access

All digital account login information, passwords, and administrative rights and privileges will remain within the Executive Committee.  Use of account credentials may be delegated by simple majority vote to appropriate committee directors and organizational staff.

Section 10. Ownership and Use of Name

The Executive Committee shall have sole dominion over use of the organization's name and its common derivatives, including Libertarian Party of RI, Rhode Island Libertarian Party, LPRI, and LP of RI.  If an LPRI member operates an entity that may present confusion or conflict with the official LPRI identity, the unofficial entity must prominently display a disclaimer similar to the following in form and meaning: “The contents of this account (site, page, group, etc.) are not authorized or approved by the Libertarian Party of Rhode Island or any of its affiliates.”

 

ARTICLE VI

Meetings

Section 1. Regular meetings

The Executive Committee shall meet monthly, or at such time and place as determined by action of the Executive Committee or call of the Chair.  If a meeting is to be held at a time and/or place not arranged at a previous meeting, it is the responsibility of the Secretary to give reasonable advance notice to all Executive Committee members.

Section 2. Virtual Meetings

The Executive Committee may meet by teleconference or video conference if all Executive Committee members agree in advance, and shall adopt rules of procedure for such teleconferences and video conferences.

Section 3. Special meetings

The Chair, or three other Executive Committee members, may call a special meeting by submitting a request to the Secretary at least 24 hours in advance.  Only items listed in the request for a special meeting shall be acted upon at the special meeting.

Section 4. Quorum

A quorum shall be three (3) members of the Executive Committee.

Section 5. Special Rules

The Executive Committee may establish Special Rules of Order for its meetings.

Section 6. Reporting

The minutes of Executive Committee meetings shall include attendance, and shall be posted to the LPRI website.

Section 7. Non-Attendance

Executive Committee members, committee directors and organizational staff shall be deemed to be in non-attendance if, at a regularly scheduled Executive Committee meeting, the member fails to respond during roll call or, having missed roll call, fails to announce his or her presence before the meeting is adjourned, or does not otherwise communicate his or her inability to attend the scheduled meeting to a member of the Executive Committee.  A member's absence may be excused by declaration of the Chair, and thus not counted as non-attendance for the purposes of this section.

 

ARTICLE VII

Committees, Organizational Staff and Chapters

Section 1. Authority

The Executive Committee may, by simple majority vote, create permanent or temporary organizational staff or committees as required.

Section 2. Eligibility

All individuals appointed as organizational staff or members of a committee must be LPRI members.

Section 3. Committee Directors

Each committee shall be chaired by a director responsible for conducting the business of that committee.  Within two months of appointment, each committee director shall submit a written policy under which his or her committee will operate.  Extensions can be requested and approved by simple majority vote of the Executive Committee.

Section 4. Reporting

All organizational staff and committee directors must report to the Executive Committee at the monthly executive meeting, unless otherwise directed by the Executive Committee.  If a director is unable to attend a meeting, the director shall submit his or her report to the Vice-Chair to be presented on the director's behalf at the meeting.

Section 5. Resignation

A director or staff member resigning his or her position shall notify the Executive Committee at least seven (7) days before the resignation takes effect.  If a director or member does not submit a formal resignation, unexcused absence from three consecutive Executive Committee meetings shall be considered resignation, effective immediately upon adjournment of the third missed meeting, as prescribed in Article VI Section 7.

Section 6. Chapters

A local or town chapter of the LPRI may be chartered by the Executive Committee in any city or town in which no chapter already exists.  No more than one chapter may be chartered in any geographic area.  A single chapter may be chartered for two or more contiguous areas, each of which has at least one LPRI member.  The Executive Committee may revoke the charter of any chapter by three-fifths (3/5) majority vote of the Executive Committee, if and only if the chapter violates these Bylaws or its own chapter bylaws and rules.  The bylaws of a chapter must comport with the LPRI Bylaws.

 

ARTICLE VIII

Conventions

Section 1. Scheduling

It shall be the responsibility of the Executive Committee to set the time, place and schedule of events for the annual convention, provided that the convention must be held sometime during April or May. At least thirty days’ notice must be provided to all members concerning these arrangements.  The Executive Committee may task or select a standing or special committee to organize the event.

Section 2. Voting Eligibility

To vote at a convention, an LPRI or affiliate member must have been a member for at least 30 days before the date of the convention.

Section 3. Delegates

All LPRI members and affiliate members in attendance and registered shall be voting delegates without benefit of proxy voting.

Section 4. Nominations

To be nominated at a convention, an LPRI member must have been a member for at least 30 days before the date of the convention.

Section 5. Elections

The officers whose terms expire at that year’s convention, and the At-Large member of the Executive Committee, shall be elected at the annual convention, shall take office immediately following the close of the convention, and shall serve until the end of the convention during the year in which their term expires, or until their successors are elected.

Section 6. Voting

All elections of candidates, officers and delegates must include the option of “None of the Above” (NOTA) as the last selection on the ballot.  If NOTA receives a simple majority of votes, an entirely new slate of candidates may be offered and a new vote taken, or that position shall go unfilled.  A vacancy created by this provision may not be filled by the Executive Committee.

Section 7. Endorsements

Candidates for public office who seek endorsement by the LPRI must be voting members of LPRI (as per Article III). Such candidates for public office who seek endorsement by the LPRI shall be nominated and chosen by simple majority vote at the convention preceding the election.  All votes for endorsement must include the option of “None of the Above” (NOTA) as the last selection on the ballot.

Section 8. Special Conventions

A special convention may be called at any time with 30-days' notice, upon petition signed by one-third of those who were LPRI members during the most recent annual convention.  The petition must state the purpose(s) for such a convention, and the convention must adhere strictly to said purpose(s).

Section 9. Quorum

The quorum for an annual or special convention shall be 10 members eligible to vote, as described in Article III

 

ARTICLE IX

Candidates for Public Office

Section 1. Eligibility

A Rhode Island candidate for public office who wishes to run under the Libertarian Party banner must be an LPRI Member, legally eligible to serve in the office, and willing to accept the nomination.

Section 2. Vacancies

In the case of the death, resignation, disqualification or suspension of an LPRI nominee; offices for which no candidate is chosen at the convention; and in circumstances such as special elections, redistricting, etc. requiring new candidates to be put forward, the Executive Committee shall, by a three-fifths (3/5) majority vote, select LPRI candidates.  A candidate’s nomination may be suspended for cause by four-fifths (4/5) majority vote of the Executive Committee.

Section 3. Conflicts of Interest

“Fusion” and “cross-party” endorsements by the LPRI or LPRI endorsed candidates are forbidden.

 

ARTICLE X

Delegates to National Conventions

Delegates to a Libertarian Party national convention shall be nominated and elected by delegates to the LPRI annual convention. National convention delegates must be LPRI members.

 

ARTICLE XI

Parliamentary Authority

The rules contained in the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised shall govern LPRI meetings and/or conventions in all cases to which they apply, to the extent that they are consistent with these Bylaws and any Special Rules of Order the LPRI might adopt.

 

ARTICLE XII

Amending the Bylaws

These Bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote at an annual convention, or at a special convention where such an amendment is specified as a purpose.  Proposed amendments to the Bylaws may be submitted by any LPRI member.  The text of any such proposal must be made available to all LPRI members at least 21 days before the convention at which it is to be considered.

 

ARTICLE XIII

Dissolution

In the event of dissolution of the LPRI, its net assets will be distributed to the national Libertarian Party or its successor organization.

 

AMENDMENT HISTORY

No.

Date

Description

1.

4-20-2017

Newly revised bylaws adopted.

2.

4-28-2019

Bylaws amended as per convention minutes dates April 28, 2019