SAN DIEGANS AGAINST CRIME BYLAWS
(Revised: June 2015)
Name and Definition
The name of this association shall be “San Diegans Against Crime” (hereafter “SDAC”). SDAC is a voluntary, non-profit, unincorporated association of San Diego County residents for the purposes of eradicating and preventing crime and supporting a fair and effective criminal justice system within the community. The association is intended to function as an independent political action committee. The SDAC is not affiliated with any political party of any candidate for public office and has been created to participate directly and indirectly in the political campaigns for elective office, or initiatives and propositions, and other acts of governance relevant to its purposes.
The association is created through the voluntary association of its membership. The participation of the San Diego County deputy district attorneys in SDAC is approved and sanctioned by the Deputy District Attorneys’ Association of San Diego County, which hereby initiates the association by unanimous consent of its Board of Directors. Said approval pledges the support of the Deputy District Attorneys’ Association and the support of its membership to the purposes of SDAC.
The purposes of the SDAC are to:
examine the performance of public officials relevant to the eradication and prevention of crime within the County;
research and evaluate methodologies and public policies which effectively prevent, deter, and mitigate lawlessness;
advocate positions consonant with the purposes of the organization in all governmental forms: the courts, local governmental bodies, state and federal public agencies and legislative bodies;
educate the public about the consequences of alternative public policies relevant to public safety and to economic and other crime;
participate directly and indirectly in political and issue campaigns; to recommend endorsement or opposition of or oppose candidates and political issues;
promote the hiring and retention of quality peace and probation officers;
assure the hiring and retention of quality professional and independent prosecutors (who represent “the People”) in the criminal justice system;
represent and assist the victims of crime, particularly children, the elderly and the infirm;
encourage the peaceful resolution of disputes and grievances, and nurture among the young a respect for the rights of others and the law;
support private efforts and pubic policies which meaningfully rehabilitate offenders, or where public danger warrants, which assure their removal from society;
SDAC will only endorse and financially support political candidates and initiatives that have been approved by a majority vote of both the SDAC and DDAA Boards and in conformity of DDAA goals and interests.
Office of SDAC
The principal office address of SDAC shall be 330 Encinitas Boulevard, Suite 101, Encinitas, California, 92024.
Membership, Dues and Contributions, Terms
Section 1. Membership
Membership shall be available to all active members of the San Diego Deputy District Attorneys’ Association (SDDDAA), and such other persons who subscribe to the purposes as enunciated in Article III of these by laws.
Section 1.A Active Membership
Active Membership is limited to those persons who are active members of the SDDDAA.
Section 1.B Contributing Membership
Contributing Membership is open to those who subscribe to the purposes in Article III herein. The Board of Directors of SDAC may reject any candidate for contributing membership upon their making application, or if already a member, then on renewal of membership, provided however, that membership in SDAC shall not de denied to anyone on the basis of race, creed, religion, color, sex, gender, handicap, or national origin, or on any other basis violative of legal or constitutional right. Contributing members shall have no right to hold office on the SDAC Board.
Section 2. Annual Dues.
Section 2A. Active Members.
The amount of annual dues for active members shall be set by the Board of SDAC.
Section 3. Returned donations
Any contribution, or membership to which it pertains, not acceptable by the Board of Directors of SDAC shall not be accepted and/or shall be returned to the donor.
The control and direction of SDAC is vested with the SDAC Board of Directors. The initial Board shall include no less than five nor more than thirteen members; from four to ten such members shall be selected by the Board of Directors of the SDDDAA and the remaining members shall be selected by the Board of SDAC. At least one member not serving as a deputy district attorney and not a member of SDDDAA shall be a member of the initial Board of SDAC.
Section 1. Selection of Board Members
Successor Boards shall consist of nine (9) board members and shall consist of the following voting members: President, Vice-President, Treasurer, Secretary, and four directors elected by the members of SDAC. The remaining voting member of the SDAC Board shall be the current sitting President of the SDDDAA.
The Officers and elected members of the Board of Directors shall be elected by the members and shall hold office for two years and until the installation of their successors. The terms of office shall be from October 1st through September 30th.
The Officers shall be elected in odd numbered years and the remaining Board of Directors members shall be elected in even numbered years.
Prior to August 15, the Board of Directors shall notify the members of upcoming vacancies on the Board. Nominations shall be made in writing by any member in good standing and filed with the SDAC secretary no later than September 1st.
Voting will take place at a time set by the SDAC Board of Directors between September 15th and 20th. Only persons who have been active and continuous members of SDAC, from January 15 of the year of the election to the date of election, may vote in that election. Deputy District Attorneys or Child Support Program Attorneys who are hired by their respective departments subsequent to the deadline of January 15 may vote in the election for that year if they have joined the Association within 60 days of their hire. The voting ballot shall be in such form and shall contain such instructions as may be prescribed by the SDAC Board of Directors. Each active member shall be entitled to vote for each office and for each position to be filled at an election. Voting procedures shall be set by the SDAC Board of Directors. In the case of the election to the SDAC Board of Directors each valid ballot must include votes for four candidates.
A plurality of votes cast shall elect. In case two or more candidates for one office shall receive an equal number of votes the existing Board of Directors shall determine the outcome.
If the office of President becomes vacant prior to the expiration of the term of office, the Vice-President shall succeed to that office to finish out the term. Any other vacancies in the elected members of the Board of Directors may be filled by a special election of the general membership within forty-five days of the vacancy or by vote of the Board of SDAC at a regularly scheduled meeting.
Any person may be nominated who is an active member of SDAC and SDDDAA. Any person nominated to fill a vacancy on the SDAC Board must be elected by a majority of a quorum of the Board of SDAC at a regularly scheduled meeting.
The name or names of all persons nominated to be selected on an interim basis to fill a vacancy on the Board of SDAC, will be listed on a ballot. Each Board member will have the number of votes equal to the number of vacancies that are to be filled. (EX: One vacancy = one vote, two vacancies = two votes.) The Board members may cast only one vote per candidate for each of the number of votes available. The votes will go onto the ballot. The election will be done by secret ballot. Once the election is completed, the Secretary and Vice President, or in their absence their alternates as selected by the President, will gather the ballots, certify each ballot was properly filled out, and tally the votes. Improperly filled out ballots will not be counted. The person with the most number of votes will be elected to the vacancy on an interim basis. In the case of multiple vacancies on the same ballot the persons with the most votes will fill each of the vacancies. (EX: If two openings, the two top vote recipients will fill the vacancies, if three vacancies, the top three vote recipients will fill the vacancies.) In case of a tie for any vacancy there will be a re-vote for that vacancy only with the same procedure above. If there is another tie, the President, Vice-President, and Secretary will decide. The interim member will then serve out the remaining of the term of the vacancy, until the next scheduled election of directors and officers of the SDAC Board.
Section 2. Removal of Board Members
Any Board member may be removed by a majority vote of a quorum of the Board for good cause. Good cause shall include, but is not limited, to the following:
a) Failure to retain active membership in the SDDDAA and SDAC.
b) Failure to attend more than 3 consecutive Board meetings.
c) Any violation of the confidentiality of votes or discussions in Executive Session.
The Board shall have control over the funds and affairs of SDAC and shall establish and carry out all policies and activities of the association. Terms shall be for two years, with one half of the initial members serving an initial term of one year. No person shall serve longer than ten years on the Board except by unanimous consent of the Board. The Board shall have the power to:
a) Hire or appoint such personnel, and enter into such contracts, as it deems necessary to carry out the purpose of SDAC;
b) Adopt and periodically review the budget;
c) Study all matters affecting crime within the County;
d) Establish voluntary contributions for members;
e) Finance and engage in research to determine optimum policies;
f) Educate the public concerning the performance of public officials and the qualifications and proposed policies of candidates for public office;
g) Engage in such other acts necessary to carry out the purposes of SDAC.
The initial Board of Directors shall consist of: Robert Eichler, Mark Pettine, Sally Williams, A. Craig Rooten, and Duane Shinnick. The first three persons above shall serve two year initial terms, and the latter two, one year terms.
The officers of SDAC shall include the President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. Their respective duties consist of the following:
President: The President shall preside at all meetings of SDAC and shall call to order all meetings. He or She shall sign and execute all contracts on behalf of SDAC when authorized to do so by the Board, and shall perform all of the duties incidental to the office. Presidential Pre-Requisite: The office of SDAC President shall require one two year term of prior experience as a member of the SDAC Board of Directors.
Vice President: The Vice President shall, in the absence or incapacity of the President, perform the duties of that office. Vice-Presidential Pre-Requisite: The office of SDAC Vice President shall require one two year term of prior experience as a member of the SDAC Board of Directors.
Treasurer: The Treasurer shall have the care and custody of all of the funds and liquid assets of SDAC and shall deposit them in a separate account and supervise their accounting consistent with applicable law. The Treasurer shall prepare an annual budget for review and consideration by the SDAC Board of Directors. The proposed annual budget shall include a review of the prior year’s expenditures as well as projected expenditures for the new budget year, including political races and initiatives. He or she shall, at reasonable times, make available the books of SDAC to any member of its Board, and upon reasonable notice, to any active member of SDAC. Receipts will be collected for moneys received where customary. Canceled checks, stubs and bank records shall be kept for a period of no less than five years after the transaction occurred.
Secretary: The Secretary shall keep true and correct minutes of all meetings of SDAC and attend to all correspondence pertaining to the organization, and perform all the duties incidental to his or her office. Endorsements of political candidates shall be recorded as either a vote in favor or endorsement or a vote against the endorsement, without a numeric breakdown of such vote in the minutes. All other Board votes shall have the numeric breakdown recorded in the minutes.
The initial officers of SDAC are President-Robert Eichler; Vice President-Mark Pettine; Treasurer-Sally Williams; and Secretary-A. Craig Rooten.
The Board shall schedule regular meetings at monthly intervals. The regularly scheduled meetings will ccur on the last week of every month or any other convenient date. An annual meeting will be held for all active members in the month of October, or another month may be selected, to be announced at least two weeks in advance. Special meetings of SDAC may be called by the President and shall be called upon written request of at least ten active SDAC members or three SDAC board members. All called meetings shall be announced at least three days in advance by fax, telephone or electronic mail. Minutes of SDAC Board meetings will be available, upon reasonable notice, to any current active member of SDAC.
A quorum for the Board shall consist of a majority. All votes on business require a majority vote of a quorum of the Board. All votes shall be verbal or by a show of hands; except where two or more Board members so request, votes may be by secret ballot.
Telephonic conferencing with voting and voting by electronic mail (e-mail) can be held in situations where voting on an issues is necessary between regularly scheduled board meetings. Telephonic conference and e-mail votes require a majority vote of the Board.
SDAC and SDDDAA will establish and follow a joint endorsement policy that relates to political candidates and political initiatives. Decisions related to that endorsement policy will be followed by both the SDAC and SDDDAA. No deviation from the Endorsement Policy will occur without a majority voted of both the SDAC Board and the SDDDAA Board.
SDAC shall have no ongoing financial or in-kind support relationship with any campaign of any candidate for public office, shall take no direction from any such candidate or any committee or agent of a candidate, and shall not accept any contributions from or for any candidate or the committee or agent of any candidate for any public office. SDAC may take positions on issues or on the candidacy of any matter submitted to the electorate, based on its own independent evaluation of the qualifications and likely performance of the policy or candidate in furthering the purposes of SDAC.
Records and Finances
Section 1. Audit. The Directors of SDAC shall keep correct and complete books and records of accounts. Said records of account shall be audited once a year by an auditor approved by the Directors.
Section 2. Fiscal Year. The fiscal year of SDAC shall be from January 1, through December 31.
Section 3. Deposits. The funds of SDAC shall be deposited to its credit in a separate account maintained for that purpose.
The Board of Directors of SDAC, acting by the affirmative vote of a majority or more of its members, may adopt and for time to time amend such rules and regulations pertaining to the purposes, activities and affairs of SDAC as it may deem necessary and desirable, provided that such rules and regulations do not conflict with any provision of law or of the By-Laws herein. Such rules and regulations, if adopted, shall be designated as the “Standing Rules of the SDAC.”
Section 1. These By-Laws may be adopted, amended or repealed, or new By-Laws may be adopted, amended or repealed by a 2/3 vote of the entire Board of Directors of SDAC.
Section 2. Notwithstanding the above, these By-Laws may be adopted, amended or repealed, or new By-Laws may be adopted in the following manner:
(a) Upon presentation to the Board of Directors of SDAC of a petition signed by at least fifteen active members of SDAC, the Board of Directors shall, at the next regularly scheduled Board meeting, place on the agenda and act upon the petition for the purposes of voting on the changes proposed in the petition. Said matter shall be included on the noticed agenda for said meeting. Said changes shall be adopted where approved by a majority or more vote of a quorum of the members of the Board of Directors of SDAC and said altered By-Laws shall be drawn accordingly.
If any provision, article, or section of these By-Laws shall be deemed invalid for any reason, it shall be void and of no force and effect, but shall not effect the validity of the remaining provisions.
SDAC may be dissolved by a two thirds vote of the SDAC Board of Directors. Upon such dissolution, any funds remaining after payment of all debts and expenses shall be paid over to an Internal Revenue Code qualified 501-c-3 charity as proposed by the Board of Directors and approved by a vote of the active membership.
The rules governing all meetings shall conform with Roberts Rules of Order, revised.
Terri Wyatt, President, SDAC
Robert Hickey, President, SDDDAA