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Guest Rob

I'm on a youth league Board and the by-laws have no mention of term limits for Board members but does call for an annual election. As a result should we be taking nominations for all roles and voting on all roles each year even if there is an incumbent?

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44 minutes ago, Guest Rob said:

I'm on a youth league Board and the by-laws have no mention of term limits for Board members but does call for an annual election. As a result should we be taking nominations for all roles and voting on all roles each year even if there is an incumbent?

Yes, if your bylaws call for annual elections, then you should have annual elections.

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Guest Rob
18 minutes ago, Daniel H. Honemann said:

Yes, if your bylaws call for annual elections, then you should have annual elections.

Just so I'm clear on your reply....we hold the annual elections each year per the by laws. I guess the question I'm asking is whether having an incumbent (when no term limits are specified) makes any difference or not. It sounds like you're saying that with no terms limits specified but annual elections are required that all roles should be up for grabs and voted on each year - correct? 

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17 minutes ago, Guest Rob said:

Just so I'm clear on your reply....we hold the annual elections each year per the by laws. I guess the question I'm asking is whether having an incumbent (when no term limits are specified) makes any difference or not. It sounds like you're saying that with no terms limits specified but annual elections are required that all roles should be up for grabs and voted on each year - correct? 

The fact that your bylaws impose no term limits for board members has nothing at all to do with the fact that elections for membership on the board are to be held each year. It just means that, at these elections, no one will be ineligible simply because of prior service on the board.

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In addition to Mr. Honemann's comments, one rule from RONR to keep in mind as it might be applicable to your group:

"If the bylaws require the election of officers to be by ballot and there is only one nominee for an office, the ballot must nevertheless be taken for that office unless the bylaws provide for an exception in such a case. In the absence of the latter provision, members still have the right, on the ballot, to cast "write-in votes" for other eligible persons."  RONR (11th ed.), pp. 441-442

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Understand that a "term limit" is different from a "term of office." You bylaws should stipulate the length of time for which officers are elected, which is the "term of office," as in: "for a term of two years, or until a successor is elected." A term limit would be something like, "no officer may serve more than three successive terms in the same office." 

So what do your bylaws say about terms of office? If they say nothing, the result would be that once elected, your officers are elected for life, or until they cease to be eligible (as, for instance, if they are required to be members of the organization to hold office, and they cease to be members). In that case, holding annual elections wouldn't make sense, because you would only need a new one if an old one quit, died, or became ineligible.

Assuming your bylaws say that officers are elected for a one year term, then they definitely have to be re-elected each year - and if there is no defined term limit, they may continue to be elected year after year.

If your bylaws say something more ambiguous, such as "officers are elected annually" or " . . . at the annual meeting," then that probably means they are elected for one year terms, but that is a matter of interpreting your bylaws, and ultimately, the members of any organization have to interpret their own rules.

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