Election Rules

Status

This document was approved at the Board of Directors meeting on December 12, 2018.

Introduction

This document, written in September 2018, serves as the current official set of rules for both Moon Society Elections for the Annual Officers & Board of Directors Election and Moon Society Mail Votes for the annual election, special elections, for bylaws amendments, and for other general purposes.

This document has been written to align closely with the procedures spelled out in the Bylaws, and the spirit of the Bylaws, but is also meant to modernize the election procedures to better use modern & secure electronic voting, which could not be fully envisioned or possible when the Bylaws were originally written in the year 2000.

In the cases where this document and the Bylaws differ, the Bylaws will take precedence.

Legal Foundation of these Rules

Article XI, Section 3 of the Moon Society Bylaws states the following:

Rules concerning campaigning and conduct of the annual Board of Directors and Officers election, in addition to those given in these Bylaws, shall be maintained by the Board of Directors in a document to be called "Election Rules".

In addition, Article XII, Section 1(f) of the Bylaws, states the following:

(f) Voting By Mail: Each Body may vote by mail in accordance with these Bylaws and the "Rules for Mail Votes", which document shall be maintained by the Board of Directors and which may be amended only by majority vote of the Board of Directors.

The "Rules for Mail Votes" document is also mentioned in the Bylaws Amendment procedures (Article XIII, Section 1), which states:

Mail votes on amendments shall be conducted in accordance with the document "Rules for Mail Votes".

Definition of Terms Used Herein

Permanent Officer: one of the offices specified in the bylaws: President, Vice President, Secretary, or Treasurer.

Non-Officer Member of the Board of Directors: one of the five board members who are elected, and not any of the Permanent Officers mentioned above.

A. Officer/Board Member Eligibility & Terms

1. Eligibility:

  • (a). To be eligible for election as a Permanent Officer or Non-Officer Member of the Board of Directors, individuals must be members of the Society at the time of the election and for an uninterrupted period of one or more years prior to the election.[1]
  • (b). Officers shall be eligible for re-election without limitation.[2]


2. Inability to Serve in Multiple Offices:
A person may not serve simultaneously as an Permanent Officer and as a Non-Officer Member of the Board of Directors, except by explicit waiver by the Board of Directors on a case-by-case basis.[3]


3. Terms of Office:

  • (a). Each elected permanent officer or board member shall take office immediately when the election results are announced at the Annual Meeting.[4]
  • (b). Each elected permanent officer or board member shall serve for a term of approximately two years or until their successor is duly elected & announced as per (A)(3)(a).[5]
  • (c). The President and Secretary shall be elected in even-numbered years and the Vice President and Treasurer shall be elected in odd-numbered years.[6] Thus, the annual election held in 2019 will be for the Vice President and Treasurer offices, and the annual election held in 2020 will be for the President and Secretary elections, and so on.

 

B. Election Procedures

1. Elections Secretary: This is a person, designated by the Board of Directors, who is responsible for:

  • (a). Overall management of the election.
  • (b). Keeping track of nominations and soliciting / publishing candidate statements.
  • (c). Creating the ballot and sending out the electronic and paper ballots.
  • (d). Tallying the final votes.
  • (e). Announcing the final results of the election at the Annual Meeting.

At the time of this writing, the Vice President of the Moon Society is serving as Elections Secretary (with the support of the Board), and managed the 2018 election. The backup elections secretary would be the Secretary of the Moon Society.


2. Nominations:

  • (a). Any eligible individual may be nominated for a Board or Officer position by a fellow member of an officially recognized committee of the Moon Society, such as by a member of the Management Committee or a member of the Board of Directors.[7]
  • (b). Each person who is nominated must accept the nomination and be willing to serve as a Candidate in the election and to serve in the office for which they are being nominated.
  • (c). Each nominee must submit a brief statement of their qualifications to the Elections Secretary, so that it can be published to the general membership who will be voting in the election.


3. Balloting:

  • (a). The Ballot of the annual elections shall be assembled by the Elections Secretary.
  • (b). The primary Ballot is electronic, but a postal ballot should also be created that can be filled out and mailed in to the Society. Only one or the other will be accepted for an individual voting member, with the primary electronic Ballot getting precedence. The exact postal address to receive ballots will be at the discretion of the Election Secretary.
  • (c). Information on how to access the electronic Ballot will be sent electronically to all active & paid members of the Moon Society in May of the election year.[8]
  • (d). The paper ballot will be sent to all active & paid members at the same time (by end of May).


4. Eligibility to Vote:

  • (a). Any individual who was a member of the Society for the entire month of May of the election year may vote.[9]
  • (b). The Board of Directors can also provide a waiver to allow past members who are currently expired to vote, but this must be done explicitly and on a case-by-case basis.


5. Voting Procedures

  • (a). The ballot for Permanent Officers shall list out all of the nominees, including their name and Moon Society membership number. There will also be a final entry for a write-in candidate. Voters can select one candidate (or write-in a candidate) for each office.[10]
  • (b). The ballot for Board of Directors shall list out all of the nominees, including their name and Moon Society membership number. There will also be a final entry for a write-in candidate. Voters can select as many candidates as there are board seats up for election (eg. two for even-numbered years and three for odd-numbered years.)[11] Instead of selecting a candidate for one or more of the available seats, voters can also write-in one or more candidates. Voters may not vote multiple times for a single candidate (including via write-in), or vote for / write-in more candidates than there are board seats up for election.
  • (c). The election ends on August 1st at Midnight Central time and all ballots must be cast by then. If a paper ballot is mailed in, the postmark must be prior to August 1st.[12]
  • (d). The Election Secretary is responsible for ensuring that there is no double-voting or any other violation of these procedures.


6. Voting Results

  • (a). For Permanent Officer elections, the candidate on the ballot with the most votes wins.
    • (i). If a write-in candidate receives the most votes, they will need to be confirmed by the Board of Directors prior to taking office, and must also be eligible as per (A)(1)(a), unless specifically provided a waiver by the Board of Directors.
    • (ii). If write-ins such as "abstain" or "none of the above" win a plurality of the votes, then nobody is elected to that office and it will officially be vacant until filled by a Board appointment.
    • (iii). If an office becomes vacant but the office holder from the previous term is willing to continue serving, they can be considered the Acting office-holder until confirmed by the Board.
    • (iv). For organizational continuity, the Moon Society should have an Acting, appointed or elected office holder in all four permanent offices at all times.
  • (b). For Non-Officer Members of the Board of Directors, the top eligible nominees on the ballot (two for even-numbered years and three for odd-numbered years) receiving the most votes will be elected.[13] Write-in candidates for the Board of Directors that win the election (ie. are in the top two or three, depending on year) must be confirmed by the outgoing Board.
  • (c). In the event of a tie vote for a Permanent Office or for a Non-Officer Member of the Board of Directors, the outgoing Board of Directors shall break the tie by majority vote.[14]
  • (d). The results of the election are announced at the Annual Meeting of the Moon Society in early August, and are also posted on the Moon Society's website.


7. Chairman of the Board of Directors Election

  • (a). The Chairman of the Board shall be elected annually, after the Annual Officers & Board of Directors Election. The Chairman election shall be conducted among the members of the Board.
  • (b). Nominees are collected prior to the election. Any member of the board can nominate another member, or themselves. Nominations must be accepted by the nominee.
  • (c). Candidate statements from among all nominations are required to be sent prior to the election.
  • (d). All members of the board are required to vote in this election. Use of mail votes to encourage full participation is encouraged.
  • (e). The new Chairman shall take office immediately after receiving a majority of votes among the board members, and the new Chairman will be in office until the next Chairman Election is held.
  • (f). In the cases where the Chairman has lost his/her board seat, he/she will immediately cease holding this office and a new Chairman shall be elected from among the current membership of the board as per these procedures.
  • (g). If a majority of Board members is in favor of it, the Board can decide to hold a new Chairman election at any time.

C. Rules for Mail Votes

1. In-Meeting Voting Rules

  • (a). Members of the Moon Society must be in an active (paid-up) membership status to have Voting Priviledges. Lifetime members are considered to always be active.
  • (b). For most Moon Society meetings, one-half of the Voting Members of the committee or the Board shall constitute a Quorum. Votes can be taken during a face-to-face or online meeting that has met Quorum of all Voting Members present.[15]
  • (c). Motions to be voted on should be clearly stated as per the general guidelines in Robert's Rules of Order, Newly Revised (11th Edition).
  • (d). Members are able to vote Yes, No, or to Abstain from a vote. If a member is considered to be present for the meeting but does not vote, it is considered an Abstention. For example, in the case of an online meeting, a member who is away from their computer during a vote is considered to be Abstaining.
  • (e). For a motion to pass a vote, more than one half of the Voting Members present at the meeting (including those who Abstain) must vote in the affirmative. For example, if there are 9 members present for a meeting, four vote Yes, and three vote No, and two Abstain, the motion would not pass as it would have required 5 Yes votes.


2. Electronic Voting Rules

  • (a). Votes can be conducted by mail, including both postal mail and electronic voting via email or another mechanism. For the purposes of this document and in interpreting the Bylaws of the Moon Society, a "mail vote" can refer to any type of electronic voting or also postal mail voting.
  • (b). Every vote done via mail must be managed by an Election Secretary or (if none is designated for that vote) by an officer of the Society such as the Secretary of the Moon Society.
  • (c). Mail voting results will need to include: (1) the number of Yes votes, (2) the number of No votes, (3) the number of explicit Abstain votes, and (4) the total number of eligible Voting Members of the body in question.
  • (d). Standard Motions will pass a mail vote if (1) more than half of the Voting Members of the body in question vote in the ballot (including an explicit Abstain), and (2) more than half of the votes are Yes votes.[16]
  • (e). If a postal ballot is used as part of the election, the exact postal address to receive ballots will be at the discretion of the Election Secretary.


3. Special Votes

  • (a). Wherever the Bylaws, or other documents approved by the Board of Directors require a majority or two-thirds vote of all members of a committee or the Board, such requirement shall be deemed to mean a majority or two-thirds vote of the entire Voting Members of the committee or the Board.[17]


4. Proxy Votes

  • (a). The Moon Society does not provide for any proxy votes.[18]

Notes

  1. Article VI, Section 2 of the Moon Society Bylaws
  2. Article VI, Section 5 of the Bylaws
  3. Article VI, Section 3 of the Bylaws
  4. Article VI, Section 3 of the Bylaws
  5. Article VI, Section 3 of the Bylaws
  6. Article VI, Section 3 of the Bylaws
  7. Article XI, Section 1 of the Bylaws
  8. Article XI, Section 2 of the Bylaws
  9. Article XI, Section 2 of the Bylaws
  10. Article XI, Section 2 of the Bylaws
  11. Article XI, Section 2 of the Bylaws
  12. Article XI, Section 2 of the Bylaws
  13. Article XI, Section 2 of the Bylaws
  14. Article XI, Section 2 of the Bylaws
  15. Article XII, Section 1(a) of the Bylaws
  16. Article XII, Section 1(a) of the Bylaws
  17. Article XII, Section 1(a) of the Bylaws
  18. Article XII, Section 1(c) of the Bylaws
Publish Date