Our club held elections for officers this year and provided members an opportunity to vote electronically and in person at the annual membership meeting.
On the email and paper ballots for election of officers there were three (3) positions for Director at Large vacant with only two candidates on the ballot. The ballot clearly stated "3 positions available" even though two candidates names were on the ballot. The ballots, both email and paper, did not provide any space or line to write in a vote for any other person.
Several email ballots were returned with a write in vote for a member eligible to hold office but not listed as a candidate on the ballot. Several paper ballots were submitted during the voting at the annual membership meeting with the same write in candidate clearly marked on the ballot.
The teller committee initially did not report the write in candidate and was challenged by the member whose name had been written in. After a brief recess the tellers committee reported that in fact several email and paper ballots contained a single name as a write in candidate. Several people objected because the ballots, both email and paper, did not contain any reference to write in candidates.
The presiding officer at the annual membership meeting where in vote was taken refused to certify the ballot, choosing to ignore the point of order that write in voting is allowed so long as the bylaws do not contain any prohibition.
The meeting was adjourned without certifying the vote and the presiding officer pronounced that the board would convene to make the final decision at a special board meeting.
1. Since there were three positions noted on the ballot and only two candidates listed, should the write in candidate be elected to the third position?
2. Does the failure to provide any reference to the ability to write in a candidate or the lack of a line for writing in a candidate create an invalid ballot that can be rejected?
3. Since the annual membership meeting was adjourned without resolving the conflict, what is the appropriate way to certify the vote?
A facsimile of the ballot and excerpt from the bylaws on elections are attached.
Ballot As Mailed to Members.doc
Bylaws Section Regarding Elections.doc