Convention Discussion on Slack

Members can use the #local-convention Slack channel to discuss the convention.

Summary

Metro DC DSA is hosting a chapter convention to update our bylaws and vote on resolutions to help define the path forward for our chapter. The convention itself will be a one day event, wherein delegates from the chapter will deliberate and vote on the proposed amendments and resolutions that have been submitted. Please note the following deadlines:

  • Amendments to the bylaws and general resolutions must be submitted no later than September 23, 2017. All proposed amendments and resolutions will be posted to this page (dsadc.org/convention) within a few days of this deadline.
  • Amendments to the proposed amendments and resolutions must be submitted no later than October 6, 2017.
  • The finalized language of all proposed amendments and resolutions– including their respective amendments– will be posted no later than October 10, 2017.

The convention will be held Saturday, October 21, 2017 from 12PM to 6PM at the Columbia Heights Educational Campus (CHEC). CHEC is approximately two blocks west of the Columbia Heights Metro station. A map is available here.

Rules + Procedures

You may read the full rules for the 2017 Local Convention by clicking here. A PDF version is available here.

The local convention will adhere to Robert’s Rules of Order for its parliamentary procedure. It is strongly advised that all delegates familiarize themselves with Robert’s Rules prior to the convention; in fact, all DSA members are encouraged to have at least a basic understanding of Robert’s Rules, as well as of parliamentary procedures in general. A comprehensive guide to Robert’s Rules is available at rulesonline.com, and a very abridged overview is available here.

Proposals

The following is the definitive list of proposals that have been submitted, emended, and amended for the local convention. This list will be updated as new proposals are prepared. Delegates are strongly encouraged to review all proposals in their entirety prior to attending the convention. Click “Read More” next to each proposal to display its full text.

We haven’t published any proposals yet! Check back soon.

Submit a Proposal

Metro DC DSA members in good standing are welcome to submit proposals for deliberation at the local convention. You may review the current chapter bylaws here: dsadc.org/about/chapter-bylaws/

All submissions will be reviewed by the Local Convention Working Group. You will be contacted with any requests for clarification or emendment suggestions. Proposals will be published to the site as they are prepared and approved.

Resolution

View a sample Resolution document: Google Drive

To submit a Resolution, please use the form here: Google Form

Constitutional Amendment

View a sample Amendment document: Google Drive

To submit an Amendement to our chapter constitution and by-laws, please use the embedded form below. You may also access the form directly here: Google Form

RSVP to Attend

If you plan to attend the local convention as a delegate, please fill out the form below. While we encourage all chapter members to be involved in the process, we ask that delegates consider the following guidelines prior to registering:

  • Delegates must be present on the convention floor for the entirety of the convention, from 12PM to 6PM on Saturday, October 21, 2017
  • Delegates must have a basic understanding of parliamentary procedure, including Robert’s Rules of Order. To learn about Robert’s Rules, please review the resources linked in the Policies + Procedures section.
  • Delegates are expected to review and agree to the Convention Rules prior to registration. These rules have been formally approved by the Metro DC DSA Steering Committee and are binding to the convention procedures.
  • Delegates are expected to review all submitted proposals prior to the convention. While deliberation and discussion is encouraged during the convention, delegates should have familiarity with the amendments and resolutions beforehand.

To register, simply submit the form below. If you have previously registered but cannot attend, please contact info@dsadc.org to notify us as soon as possible.

If you plan to attend and require accessibility considerations, please email convention@dsadc.org.

If you plan to attend and require childcare service, please email convention@dsadc.org.

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METRO DC DEMOCRATIC SOCIALISTS OF AMERICA

Local Convention October 21, 2017

Organization of the Convention

  1. The Steering Committee is officially responsible for organizing the convention but has delegated its authority to the Local Convention Working Group (LCWG).
  2. The Chair of the LCWG shall serve as the Chair of the Convention and may appoint such assistants as they deem necessary. The Secretary of Metro DC DSA shall serve as Secretary to the Convention, keeping the official record of the Convention, and may appoint such assistants as they deem necessary.
  3. The Local Convention Working Group has created the following committees to assist with its work:
    1. an Administrative Committee, which is responsible for making recommendations to the Convention Chair regarding any issue that arises on the administration of the Convention. Members of this committee will be responsible for Convention logistics, planning, and scheduling. Members of this committee shall act as ombudspersons to facilitate the resolution of problems of process that delegates or delegations may face.
    2. a Proposals Committee, which shall receive resolutions and amendments submitted to the Convention and make recommendations to the Convention on the disposition of resolutions and amendments to the Constitution. The Proposals Committee may propose steps to facilitate consideration of resolutions and amendments, including but not limited to appointing small groups to redraft or combine resolutions, preferably in advance of the Convention, and in consultation with the authors. Where there appear to be differences of opinion, the Proposals Committee may propose alternate amendments that will allow the Convention plenary to concentrate discussion on points of substantive controversy.
    3. a Styles Committee, which shall have the power to rewrite any resolution or bylaws amendments passed by the Convention to make it consistent with the style of the document being amended (i.e. implementing gender neutral language, changing the order of sentences, etc.). The Styles Committee may not make any substantive changes to resolutions or amendments passed by the convention that change their final meaning or interpretation. The Styles Committee will be comprised of members appointed by the LCWG and the authors of all bylaws amendments that were passed by the Convention.
  4. Membership of each committee will be confirmed at the beginning of the Convention.

Delegate Credentials

  1. All members in good standing of the Metro DC Democratic Socialists of America local that have paid their dues through November 2017 shall be seated as delegates. The Administrative Committee will be tasked with moderating all credentials disputes.

General Procedure

  1. Each session of the Convention has pre-established time limits. The only exception to the established time limits would occur if there is a motion to extend the time approved by the majority of the delegates. Any such motion to extend the time must include a corresponding reduction of time for another session. At the end of each session, the document presented and amendments, if any, shall be voted up or down. Amendments shall be voted first; the document as amended will then also be voted up or down.
  2. Except as provided in these Rules and the Bylaws, the latest edition of Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised shall govern the proceedings of the Convention. The Chair of each Convention plenary session shall be the sole interpreter of the Convention Rules and may appoint a parliamentarian and such other assistants as needed to conduct the session. Any delegate may appeal any ruling of the Chair to the Convention. The ruling of the Chair may be overturned by a vote in favor of the appeal by a majority of delegates present and voting.
    1. Procedural motions concern how to proceed with a matter such as moving to refer the matter to the Steering Committee or moving to extend or end discussion. Procedural motions may be made at the Convention. In order to be voted on, a procedural motion needs a second. If no other delegate seconds the motion, the motion fails.
    2. Substantive motions concern amendments to the content of Convention documents. No amendments will be allowed from the floor at this Convention as the time limits for amendments are established as part of the organization of the Convention and explained in emails regarding the Convention and on the Convention explainer on the website. Amendments received by the Convention committee at the required times will be part of the discussion of that Convention document.
    3. Point of Personal Privilege — a seated delegate may raise a point of personal privilege at any time. A point of personal privilege pertains only to issues of personal discomfort or needs such as not being able to hear the speaker, etc.
  3. Only delegates and DSA staff members may speak on questions coming before the Convention in plenary session. Speakers on all motions shall be limited to two minutes, unless the Convention accepts a different limit.
  4. Each delegate shall be entitled to one vote on all questions coming before the Convention. All questions before the Convention shall be decided by majority vote of the delegates present and voting. All procedural motions, including a motion to suspend the rules shall require a majority vote, except where otherwise provided in the Rules.
  5. Any amendment or resolution that is to be considered will first be motivated by its author. Then a certain number of speakers will be heard for and against, the number to be determined by the amount of time remaining in the session. When the time for comments for and against is exhausted, the Chair will ask for a delegate to call the question.
  6. Each amendment will be considered separately, one after another. In the interest of time, the Chair of the session will first ask delegates for a show of support for each amendment before it is considered. At least 20 delegates must express initial support for the amendment for it to be heard. If the amendment receives 20 delegates’ support, it will be considered. If it fails to receive 20 delegates’ support, it will not.

Resolutions and Bylaws Amendments

  1. All proposed amendments to the Bylaws or resolutions shall have a sponsor, who is a member in good standing of Metro DC DSA. There may be cosponsors, who are members in good standing.
  2. Proposed amendments or resolutions shall be submitted in electronic form to the Local Convention Working Group no later than September 23, 2017. Amendments or resolutions submitted after September 23rd shall be referred to the Proposals Committee for consideration.
  3. Amendments to proposals must be submitted electronically to the Local Convention Working Group no later than October 6, 2017. Amendments submitted after October 6th shall be referred to the Proposals Committee. On October 7th, the Proposals Committee shall distribute to all Convention delegates a Convention packet listing all bylaws amendments and all resolutions.
  4. Resolutions should consist primarily of statements of policy or outlines for organizational activity. The Proposals Committee will be empowered to remove excess “Whereas” clauses from resolutions.