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Guest Pegleg

Voting by new members

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Guest Pegleg

Our bylaws state that in order for a member to be eligible to vote in elections they cannot have missed three consecutive quarterly meetings prior to an election.  There are no other guidelines regarding voting eligibility requirements.  We know that we will have a contested election for at least one office during our quarterly meeting next week.  During the past two weeks, several individuals have submitted new membership forms (eligible persons may join at any time) and some have stated that it was specifically to vote in the elections.  Of course, this has caused discussion and opposing viewpoints by the executive board members.  I believe that not only would allowing these individuals to vote be unfair to those who have regularly attended the quarterly meetings but that it is also in opposition to the intent of bylaw.    

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Guest Who's Coming to Dinner

Raise a point of order at your next meeting that the new members are not eligible under your bylaws. Your point will be well-taken by the chair or not, and an appeal may ensue by either side, resulting ultimately in the assembly deciding what its bylaws intend.

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21 minutes ago, Guest Pegleg said:

Our bylaws state that in order for a member to be eligible to vote in elections they cannot have missed three consecutive quarterly meetings prior to an election.  There are no other guidelines regarding voting eligibility requirements.  We know that we will have a contested election for at least one office during our quarterly meeting next week.  During the past two weeks, several individuals have submitted new membership forms (eligible persons may join at any time) and some have stated that it was specifically to vote in the elections.  Of course, this has caused discussion and opposing viewpoints by the executive board members.  I believe that not only would allowing these individuals to vote be unfair to those who have regularly attended the quarterly meetings but that it is also in opposition to the intent of bylaw.    

Do you have a question?

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If the bylaws provide that the only basis for denying a member the right to vote in your elections is to have missed three consecutive quarterly meetings prior to the election, then members who have not missed three quarterly meetings have the right to vote. If it is desired that a person must have been a member for a certain period of time in order to vote, the bylaws should be amended to include such a provision. The right to vote is a basic right of membership.

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I fail to see how someone who was not a member can be said to have "missed" any meetings during that time.  Someone who is not a member does not even have the right, let alone the duty, to attend meetings.  

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