Constitution and Bylaws

SGP Constitution and Provincial Bylaws

Revision level: as amended at 2014 Annual Convention – 2014-May-03.

Table of Contents

Section “C” - Constitution - rev: 2014

Last revision: Incorporate resolution passed at 2014 Annual Convention.

  • Name
  • Principles
  • Objectives
  • Composition
  • Use of Feminine/Masculine Words
  • Democratic Control/Responsibility
  • Membership
  • Amendments to the Constitution and Provincial Bylaws
Section “B” - Provincial Bylaws - rev: 2014

Last revision: Incorporate resolutions passed at 2014 Annual Convention.

  • Groups
  • Membership
  • Discipline
  • Candidate Selection
  • Meetings
  • Decision Making
  • Quorum
  • Provincial Executive Officers
  • Finance
  • Annual Convention
  • Administrative Guidelines

Constitution of the Saskatchewan Green Party

C: 1.0 Name

The Saskatchewan Green Party is a political organisation registered under the Election Act of Saskatchewan, and is hereinafter referred to as the SGP or the Party. (The Constitution and Bylaws were originally adopted under the name "The New Green Alliance Party of Saskatchewan". The name was changed at the Spring 2005 Convention to be the "Green Party of Saskatchewan" and  the name later changed to the "Saskatchewan Green Party" at the Summer 2016 Convention.

C: 2.0 Principles

Every member of the SGP shall abide by the following principles, as set forth and elaborated in the Charter of the Global Greens.

C: 2.1 Ecological Wisdom

We acknowledge that human beings are part of the natural world and we respect the specific value of all forms of life, including non-human species.

C: 2.2 Non-Violence

We declare our commitment to non-violence and strive for a culture of peace and cooperation between states.

C: 2.3 Social Justice

We assert that the key to social justice is the equitable distribution of resources to ensure that all have full opportunities for personal and social development.

C: 2.4 Sustainability

We recognize the scope for the material expansion of society within the biosphere, and the need to maintain biodiversity through the use of renewable resources.

C: 2.5 Participatory Democracy

We strive for a democracy in which all citizens have the right to express their views, and are able to directly participate in decisions which affect their lives.

C: 2.6 Respect for Diversity

We honour and value equally the Earth’s biological and ecological diversity together with the context of individual responsibility toward all beings.

C: 3.0 Objectives

The objectives of the SGP shall be:

C: 3.1 to run candidates and contest provincial elections;

C: 3.2 to inspire and educate people in “green” principles as listed in article 2, above;

C: 3.3 to promote a society where environmental and social concerns are given the same priority as economic concerns;

C: 3.4 to stimulate thought and discussion among members in order to translate our principles into positive action;

C: 3.5 to meet with and support environmentalists and democratic activists in Canada and around the world;

C: 3.6 to advance the right of all citizens to be well informed, and have easy access to a wide range of public policy options, by means of an open, democratically controlled media;

C: 3.7 to work toward a society where all citizens are encouraged to share fully in a democratic process that is inclusive and transparent.

C: 4.0 Composition

C: 4.1 The SGP is composed of its members as a whole.

C: 4.2 The Group is the basic organizational unit of the Saskatchewan Green Party. A Group is a collective of people who have a sufficient sense of identity and community to be able to work together to achieve the aims of the SGP. A Group may be people working together in a neighbourbood, constituency, at a place of work, with a community or popular organization, or around a particular issue.

C: 4.3 A Regional Steering Committee is a committee struck to coordinate the activities of several Groups within a geographic area.

C: 4.4 The Provincial Council is a committee composed of members from each Regional Steering Committee and coordinates the activities of Groups on a provincial level.

C: 4.5 The Provincial Executive, including the Party Leader is elected at Convention and is charged with managing Party affairs between Conventions. The Provincial Executive fulfills the requirements of the Election Act of Saskatchewan.

C: 5.0 Use of Feminine/Masculine Words

Words in the Constitution denoting the female or male gender shall be deemed to include the other.

C: 6.0 Democratic Control - Responsibility

C: 6.1 The highest authority resides and comes from the membership operating democratically.

C: 6.2 Under ordinary circumstances, this highest authority will be exercised by the members acting at the Annual Convention of the Saskatchewan Green Party.

C: 6.3 The Annual Convention will elect the Party Leader, and Provincial Executive members in whom authority and responsibility will be entrusted between Annual conventions, in accordance with the terms of the Constitution.

C: 6.4 The Saskatchewan Green Party Premier shall appoint Cabinet Ministers from a list of MLAs provided by the membership.

C: 6.5 The elected officers and Party representatives at all levels shall apply, in performance of their duties the policies laid down and dictated by the members through Annual Convention or referendum vote.

C: 6.6 In order to facilitate the continual development of new ideas, and discourage the creation of a managerial elite, a SGP candidate who has served continuously as an elected MLA for eight years or more shall not be eligible for nomination in the immediately following election. The provisions of this article may be waived for a individual by a two thirds majority vote at Annual Convention.

C: 7.0 Membership

Eligibility for Membership

C: 7.1 Membership shall be open to every Saskatchewan resident who subscribes to the Constitution and Principles of the Party, provided she is not a member of any other provincial political party registered under the Saskatchewan Election Act.

C: 7.2 Every applicant for membership shall sign an application, the contents of which shall be prescribed by the Bylaws of the Party. Applications for membership shall be made to the Regional Steering Committee. Members shall be in good standing provided they pay their annual membership fees as prescribed in the Bylaws of the Party.

Rights and Duties of Members

C: 7.3 All members of the SGP enjoy equal rights without discrimination.

C: 7.4 A member, who is in good standing may:

C: 7.4.1 attend and speak at all meetings of the SGP,

C: 7.4.2 attend, speak and vote at Annual Convention,

C: 7.4.3 vote on SGP referenda,

C: 7.4.4 hold office in the SGP,

C: 7.4.5 exercise any other rights afforded under the Constitution and Bylaws of the SGP.

C: 7.5 Each member shall declare their commitment to the Party’s principles, and agree to abide by the Party’s Constitution and Bylaws.

C: 8.0 Amendments to the Constitution and Provincial Bylaws

C: 8.1 For amendments to the Constitution, at least two-thirds of the members present at an Annual Convention or Special General Meeting called for such a vote must agree with the changes.

C: 8.2 For amendments to the Provincial Bylaws, at least one half plus one of the members present at an Annual Convention or Special General Meeting called for such a vote must agree with the changes.


Provincial Bylaws of the Saskatchewan Green Party

B: 1.0 Groups

B: 1.1 The minimum number for a Group shall be five members.

B: 1.2. Any Group may join with other Groups or divide itself to form project or interest Groups. Groups within a region may form regional groups.

B: 1.3 Every Group shall inform a Regional Steering Committee of the nature of the Group, and the name of a contact person, in order to coordinate the activities of Groups and allow other members of the SGP to become involved in their activities.

B: 1.4 The internal organization of the Group is the responsibility of the Group members, provided always that the highest authority in the group shall be the membership in a duly constituted meeting.

B: 1.5 Funds raised by a Group shall be split with the provincial party, according to guidelines or bylaws set by Convention.

B: 1.6 When a Provincial or Municipal election is called Groups shall work together on an electoral constituency basis.

B: 1.7 All decisions in SGP Groups shall be made by consensus. This means by the agreement of most participants, with dissenters and abstainers agreeing to recognize the majority opinion as the Groups decision. If those who do not agree do not give their consent, a 75% vote for or against shall be necessary to produce a Group decision. Those who do not agree with the decision may have their objections included in any minutes recorded.

B: 1.8 All advertising and promotional material produced by groups within the Saskatchewan Green Party shall clearly indicate the name of the group that authorised its production and/or publication. The name Saskatchewan Green Party shall not be used by itself for any materials which have not been approved by groups representing the entire membership, such as the provincial Executive, Council, or a General Meeting of members.

B: 1.9 A Constituency Association (CA) is a Group open to residents of a single Provincial Constituency, working together within the Constituency to promote Party principles, build public support and membership, and raise funds for SGP and CA activities.

1.9.1 A CA shall adopt a formal “constitution” document defining its nature and organization, and providing for an Executive of at least two Officers, who shall be elected at an Annual General Meeting of the CA.

1.9.2 A CA shall democratically select candidates for Provincial elections, in accordance with Bylaw 4.1.

B: 2.0. Membership

Processing of Memberships

B: 2.1.1 All applications for new and renewed membership must be forwarded with matching fees and donations to the Treasurer / Chief Official Agent of the Saskatchewan Green Party in order to be validated and accepted.

B: 2.1.2 Any SGP member accepting membership applications, membership fees and/or donations on behalf of the GPS thereby accepts the responsibility of acting as an agent of the Chief Official Agent of the SGP, and is required to familiarize herself with the procedures established to ensure accountability for the forms and funds involved.

B: 2.1.3 Membership cards will be issued for all new memberships and renewals, either at the time the application and fees are received, subject to suitable forms and procedures having been established, or by the Treasurer / Chief Official Agent after validation and acceptance.

Expiry of Membership

B: 2.2.1 The standard membership fee is ten dollars ($10.00) for a membership that expires exactly one (1) year after the day it is purchased.

B: 2.2.2 A member may pay 200 dollars to remain as a member in good standing without annual membership renewal, and have sections 2.2.1 and 2.9.3 of the Saskatchewan Green Party’s bylaws not apply to their membership.

B: 2.2.3 An individual may pay $50 to remain as a member in good standing for the next five years. Such membership expires exactly five (5) years after the day it is purchased.

Maintenance of Membership Lists

B: 2.3.1 One member designated by the President maintains the membership list.

B: 2.3.2 Membership applications are processed by the Treasurer and then forwarded to this Membership Chairperson.

Loss of Status of Member in Good Standing and Reinstatement

B: 2.4 A member shall no longer be a member in good standing of the SGP when:

B: 2.4.1. such member has been suspended from membership in accordance with the provisions of Article 3,

B: 2.4.2 such member is in arrears of six months or more in the payment of yearly membership fees.

B: 2.5 The loss of member in good standing in accordance with the preceding section is automatic.

B: 2.6 A member may be reinstated as a member in good standing when:

B: 2.6.1 the suspension imposed has ended,

B: 2.6.2 such member has paid all arrears in membership fees.

B: 2.7 A member who wishes to be reinstated as a member in good standing shall notify the Regional Steering Committee. The Regional Steering Committee shall ensure that the conditions provided for in the preceding section have been fulfilled. When they have been fulfilled, the member is reinstated as a member in good standing.

B: 2.8 A person shall no longer be a member of the SGP when:

B: 2.8.1 such member resigns from the SGP

B: 2.8.2 such member is expelled from the SGP in accordance with the provisions of Article 3,

B: 2.8.3 such member is in arrears of 12 months or more in payment of membership fees.

B: 2.9 Any person who has been expelled from the SGP may be readmitted as a member in good standing provided such member complies with the provisions of Section 7.1 of the Constitution, Section 2.7 of the Provincial Bylaws and fulfills the other conditions which may be required by the Discipline Committee.

General

B: 2.10 Notwithstanding Section 2.8 upon written request of a member, the Regional Steering Committee may allow a member who is in arrears in the payment of membership fees to remain a member in good standing when the member is in financial difficulty.

B: 3.0 Discipline

B: 3.1. Penalties may be imposed on a member or officer if he has committed any of the following offences:

B: 3.1.1 committed a fraudulent or dishonest act against the Party,

B: 3.1.2 obtained membership through fraudulent means or misrepresentation,

B: 3.1.3 having fraudulently received or misappropriated any assets or money belonging to the Party,

B: 3.1.4 having published or circulated, either verbally or otherwise, false reports or misrepresentation concerning any member or officer of the Party in respect to any matter connected with the affairs of the Party,

B: 3.1.5 having furnished without proper authority to do so, a complete or partial list of the Party membership to any person or persons other than those whose official positions entitles them to have such a list,

B: 3.1.6 having published or circulated either verbally or otherwise, reports which were designed or calculated to injure the Party,

B: 3.1.7 having repeatedly brought unsubstantiated or frivolous charges against other members.

B: 3.2 The following penalties may be imposed on a member or officer of the Party:

B: 3.2.1 written reprimand,

B: 3.2.2 removal from office

B: 3.2.3 suspension from membership for a specified period of time,

B: 3.2.4 expulsion from the Party.

B: 3.3 The aforesaid penalties may be enacted pursuant to the following rules and procedures in the following sections.

B: 3.4 The Regional Steering Committee shall constitute a Disciplinary Committee composed of three members. These members shall be randomly selected from a pool of members in the Region willing to sit on the Disciplinary Committee.

B: 3.5 On receipt of a charge against a member or officer, the Disciplinary Committee shall convene a hearing as soon as possible and the plaintiff and accused shall be given not less than seven days notice of the date, time and place of the hearing.

B: 3.6 The Disciplinary Committee shall hear the charge with impartiality and equity and it shall give the accused and the plaintiff the opportunity to present evidence and arguments. It shall ensure that the accused and plaintiff are allowed to be represented by witnesses presented by the adversary. It shall maintain order during the hearing. In every case, the onus of proof is upon the plaintiff and she shall present her evidence first.

B: 3.7 The Disciplinary Committee shall determine its own rule of procedure for the hearing and may in particular:

B: 3.7.1 decide where and when the hearing will be held,

B: 3.7.2 grant postponements and adjournments,

B: 3.7.3 intervene in the hearing and ask questions,

B: 3.7.4 proceed in the absence of the plaintiff or accused if they have been duly notified about the hearing.

B: 3.8 If the Disciplinary Committee comes to the conclusion that the accused is guilty of the offence as charged, it shall decide on the penalty to be imposed. The decision shall be rendered in writing and forwarded to the accused, the plaintiff and the Provincial Executive in strict confidence. The decision of the Disciplinary Committee shall be implemented immediately.

B: 3.9 The accused or the plaintiff shall have the right to appeal the decision of the Disciplinary Committee to a general membership meeting. The person who wishes to appeal shall advise the Regional Steering committee in writing of their desire to appeal not later than 30 days after the decision of the Disciplinary Committee.

B: 3.10 In the context of the appeal procedure to the general meeting, the Disciplinary Committee will present the reasons for their decision and the person appealing will present their evidence and argument to support the appeal. Following the presentation, a vote will be taken on the appeal. The decision of the meeting will be final and binding on the Party.

General Rules Concerning Charges

B: 3.11 Subject to the other provisions of this article, any member in good standing who considers that another member, officer or representative has committed an offense pursuant to section 3.1 may lay a charge against this member, officer or representative. The Provincial Executive, Regional Steering Committee Executive and Constituency Executive may also lay a charge against a member, an officer or a representative.

B: 3.12 No charge can be laid later than 90 days after the day the member who is filing the charge became aware of the offence.

B: 4.0 Candidate Selection

B: 4.1 In an electoral district where there is a Constituency Association, selection may be conducted by the Association, subject to approval by the Regional Steering Committee.

B: 4.2 In an electoral district where there is no Constituency Association but where there are Party members, selection will be conducted by a meeting or other process mandated by general meeting or the Provincial Executive.

B: 4.3 In an electoral district where there is no Constituency Association and there are no Party members, selection will be made by general meeting, Provincial Executive or by some procedure or committee mandated by one of these bodies.

B: 4.4 Candidates must be members in good standing of the Saskatchewan Green Party.

B: 5.0 Meetings

B: 5.1 There shall be nine types of meetings - Annual Convention, General Membership, Provincial Executive, Provincial Council, Regional Steering Committee, Committee, Constituency, Group and Nomination.

B: 5.2 There shall be at least one Annual Convention held every fiscal year It shall be held no later than six months after the end of the previous fiscal year.

B: 5.3 Committees will hold meeting at the call of the chairperson of the Committee. There shall be at least four Provincial Executive meetings annually.

B: 5.4 Where meetings are called for in these Bylaws, meetings may be interpreted as including asynchronous participation such as mail-in ballots or post-meeting mail-in ratifications. Procedures for asynchronous participation must make reasonable provision for security and integrity of the voting system. Such procedures must also ensure that those participating asynchronously have timely access to information and an opportunity for seeking clarification and engaging in discussion. If such procedures are adopted on a routine basis for Annual Convention or other General Meetings, the essence of the procedures shall be incorporated into these bylaws.

B: 5.5 Procedures for asynchronous participation in meetings, once adopted, become automatically null and void to the extent that they prevent the meeting from dealing with its essential fiduciary responsibilities. If those attending a meeting judge that such a conflict has occurred, it is their right and duty to assume full authority for dealing with time-critical essential matters.

B: 6.0 Decision Making

B: 6.1 All decision making will attempt to be made by consensus. This procedure will attempt to include sufficient time for effective discussion and debate.

B: 6.2 Where consensus is not attainable, a vote shall be held.

B: 6.3 All decision making on changes to the Constitution, Bylaws, or major policies, shall include a 30 day preview period to encourage full and effective discussion and provide the opportunity for tools like study circles to be utilized.

B: 6.4 A secret ballot on any vote at any meeting shall be required if three members present request the secret ballot.

B: 6.5 At general meetings, a vote shall be called on all decisions.

B: 6.6 Each meeting shall have an agenda, a chairperson and a secretary.

B: 6.7 A Special General Meeting shall be by petition in writing of the lesser of one-third of the membership or 50 members to the Provincial Executive. The Provincial Executive shall have the power to call, at any time, a Special General Meeting of the members.

B: 7.0 Quorum

B: 7.1 Quorum for the Annual Convention and General Meeting shall be one-third of the membership or 20 members whichever is less and a majority of the Provincial Executive members.

B: 7.2 Quorum for the Provincial Executive, Regional Steering Committees, and other committees shall be at least half of the committee members.

B: 7.3 Quorum for a constituency Nomination meeting shall be at least five members within the constituency in question.

B: 8.0 Provincial Executive Officers

Election of Provincial Executive Officers

B: 8.1 The Party Leader is a member of the Provincial Executive.

B: 8.2 Provincial Executive officers shall be elected according to the provisions of Bylaw 10.0 Annual Convention.

B: 8.3 The term of office for Executive positions is one year, except for the Leader, whose term of office shall be four years, and the President, whose term of office shall be two years.

B: 8.4 The term of office for any person appointed or elected in mid-year to fill a vacant Executive position shall end at the next Annual Convention, except where a position having a standard term of more than one year is filled by special general election, in which case the term of office shall end on the same date as if the election had taken place at the most recent Annual Convention, or at an earlier date specified at the time of the election.

B: 8.5 Executive offices are as defined below. At Annual Convention or any special meeting at which Executive officers are elected, they shall be elected in the order in which they are listed below.

B: 8.5.1 Party Leader

Duties:

  • To be responsible as the external/public voice of the Saskatchewan Green Party
  • To respond in a timely fashion, contact requests from the public, media, and organizations primarily based in Saskatchewan.
  • To ensure that the passed resolutions of the Saskatchewan Green Party are effectively communicated to the public.

B: 8.5.2 Deputy Leader

  • election of Deputy Leader be held after the vote for the election for Party Leader, and that members be encouraged, when possible, to fill the Deputy Leader position with someone of the opposite gender to the Leader,

B: 8.5.3 Party President

Duties:

  • To be responsible for the internal/member voice and direction of the Saskatchewan Green Party
  • To ensure Executive, Annual, and Special Meetings of the Saskatchewan Green Party are properly constituted and called when necessary.

B: 8.5.4 Party Vice-President

Duties:

  • To support the President in his/her duties
  • To be the acting President when the President is unable to fulfill his/her duties for a short period of time between the Annual General Meeting

B: 8.5.5 Secretary

Duties:

  • To record minutes of each Executive, Annual, and Special Meeting of the Saskatchewan Green Party.

B: 8.5.6 Treasurer/Chief Official Agent

Duties:

  • To be responsible for the Provincial Accounts of the Saskatchewan Green Party
  • To be the main contact of the Saskatchewan Green Party with Elections Saskatchewan
  • To ensure the Saskatchewan Green Party fulfills its obligations as set out in the Saskatchewan Elections Act.

B: 8.5.7 Organization Chair

  • To direct the ongoing effort to organize the party in all provincial constituencies, and to organize and lead a committee to drive this effort.

B: 8.5.8 Fundraising Chair

  • To continuously raise money for the party, and to organize and lead a committee to drive this effort.

B: 8.5.9 Youth Representative

  • To represent the views of young people on the provincial executive, and to devote time regularly toward recruiting young people to join the party.

B: 8.6 The Provincial Executive Officers shall:

  • Act pro-actively to ensure the orderly functioning of the party within the framework and spirit of the Constitution of the Green Party of Saskatchewan,
  • Ensure that all functionary positions are filled, - Ensure that all functionary responsibilities are undertaken in a timely and expeditious manner Engage in long term planning.
  • Ensure all passed resolutions of the Saskatchewan Green Party are acted upon in a timely and expedient manner.
  • Be the voice of the general membership in-between annual general meetings.
Vacancy in a Position on the Provincial Executive

B: 8.7 The Deputy Leader shall automatically become Leader should this position become vacant during a term of office, in which case an election for the positions of Leader and Deputy Leader shall be held at the next Annual Convention.

B: 8.8 The Vice-President shall automatically become President should this position become vacant during a term of office, in which case an election for the positions of President and Vice-President shall be held at the next Annual Convention.

B: 8.9 If a position other than Party Leader or President should become vacant on the Provincial Executive during a term of office, the Provincial Executive shall have the right to appoint another party member to the vacant position

B: 9.0 Finance

B: 9.1 The fiscal year of the SGP shall be from January 1st to December 31st.

Salaries of Staff and Representatives

B: 9.2 The maximum yearly salary of staff, officers and representatives shall be no greater than the average yearly provincial unionized wage. Fringe benefits will be similar to that attained by unionized workers in the province.

Political Contributions and Annual Membership Fees

B: 9.3 Political contributions to the SGP shall be limited to a yearly maximum of $5,000 from any single source.

B: 9.4 Financial contributions will only be accepted from individuals who are residents of Canada or citizens of Canada, and upon approval by the Executive, from Canadian-based businesses or non-profit organizations, Saskatchewan-based businesses or non-profit organizations, Canadian-based unions or union locals, Saskatchewan-based unions or union locals, and from the Green Party of Canada.

B: 9.5 The annual membership fee shall be set at the Annual Convention.

Party Funds

B: 9.6 Party Funds

B: 9.6.1 Twenty percent (20%) of all donations targeted towards a specific Constituency Association (CA) or other Group or Steering Committee (S.C.) shall be assigned to the general central account of the SGP Donations shall be considered to be targeted to a specific Group or S.C. if (a) the donation is accompanied by a note or memo to that effect, or (b) the donation is collected at a fundraising event for, or meeting of, an individual Group or S.C., or (c) the donation is collected in direct response to a solicitation for Group funding and is clearly recorded as such.

B: 9.6.2 Groups (including CAs) and S.C.s shall not hold bank accounts of their own, but shall turn their funds over to the Party Treasurer, who shall deposit the funds in the Party bank account, and who shall maintain records to show the amounts in the central account designated for use by each Group. Expenditures by Groups are Party expenditures, and are subject to centrally-established expense authorization and accounting procedures. Reimbursements for Group or S.C. expenses will be made following centrally-established procedures for expense claims. The body in question must be clearly identified when submitting claims for Group or S.C. expenses.

B: 9.6.3 Groups (including CAs) and S.C.s may hold petty-cash amounts, to a centrally-established limit. To comply with legislated accounting practices for registered political parties, all donations must be deposited to the central SGP account. Petty-cash funds for Groups may only be replenished by cheques issued on the central account, subject to availability of funds designated for the specific Group.

B: 9.6.4 During an election campaign, candidates will establish their own bank accounts in accordance with Provincial legislation. Provisions of bylaws 9.6.1 through 9.6.3 above do not apply to candidate funding or accounting. Provisions of the Elections Act will be observed regarding the making of contributions from Party funds towards a candidate’s campaign fund, and regarding the return of surplus funds to the Party at the end of a campaign. Where unused campaign funds are returned to the Party in excess of contributions made by the Party to the campaign, 80% of the excess will be credited to the CA (if a CA exists for the Constituency).

B: 9.6.5 Groups may choose to re-designate funds available to them to other Groups within the SGP, or contribute funds to a centrally-controlled account, as deemed necessary.

B: 9.6.6 Party funds must be used for legitimate Party purposes only, in accordance with centrally-established authorization guidelines.

B: 10.0 Annual Convention

B: 10.1 The general purposes of the Annual Convention are:

10.1.1 to receive reports from the Provincial Executive officers in order to respond to the members on how they have carried out their responsibilities during the year and their opinions on the tasks of the SGP in the period ahead,

B: 10.1.2 to discuss and adopt resolutions involving solutions to members common needs and concerns,

B: 10.1.3 to decide on the policies of the SGP for the period ahead, following democratic debate and a vote on resolutions duly submitted to the Convention,

B: 10.1.4 to deal with any other issue, duly submitted to the Convention, concerning the common good and welfare of the Party and the public generally,

B: 10.1.5 to deal with any proposed changes in the Constitution or Bylaws,

B: 10.1.6 to elect the officers who will comprise the Provincial Executive from the time they have taken the oath of office after such election.

B: 10.2 A Convention Planning Committee shall prepare the agenda and schedule for the various matters coming before the Convention. The Convention Agenda should normally include:

  • B: 10.2.1 report of the Provincial Executive,
  • B: 10.2.2 written reports of Officers who are members of the Provincial Executive,
  • B: 10.2.3 report of the Resolutions and Bylaws Committee,
  • B: 10.2.4 Resolutions,
  • B: 10.2.5 Appeals,
  • B: 10.2.6 Reports of other committees in the order determined by the Provincial Executive,
  • B: 10.2.7 Election of the Party Leader
  • B: 10.2.8 Election of other Provincial Executive Officers
  • B: 10.2.9 Other Business as determined by the Convention.

B: 10.3 Guidelines for participation in Annual Convention shall be as follows:

  • B: 10.3.1 Communications regarding Convention, including advance ballot packages, shall be made available to everyone who is a member in good standing of the Party, or has had their membership lapse within the last year, at the time of such communication.
  • B: 10.3.2 Participation in Annual Convention shall be open to all members in good standing.
  • B: 10.3.3 Members unable to attend in person may participate by advance submission of motions (resolutions and nominations) and by advance voting on submitted motions, using procedures prescribed by the Convention organizers. Such procedures must provide appropriate confidentiality and security controls, and must be approved by the Executive.
  • B: 10.3.4 In order to participate in advance submission of motions and advance voting, a member must be in good standing at the time of the advance action, and must hold a membership that will still be valid at the close of Convention.
  • B: 10.3.5 In-person attendance at each day of Convention requires that the attendee be a member in good standing at the time the meeting is called to order.

B: 10.4 Committees for Convention:

  • B: 10.4.1 The Convention shall have committees to assure the most democratic and efficient functioning of the Convention. These committees shall be open to all members in good standing.
  • B: 10.4.2 The Executive shall establish organizing committees as required to plan and prepare for Convention, and to conduct advance submission of nominations and resolutions (motions) and to conduct and control advance balloting. Committees established during the in-person meetings of Convention shall be established by the membership in attendance. Committees of Convention shall include those described below, and others as required.
  • B: 10.4.3 The Election Committee shall be responsible for conducting Executive nominations, determining the eligibility of those being nominated, preparing election ballots, and controlling completed ballots returned prior to Convention. No member may be appointed to or remain on the Election Committee after declaring her intention to run for any Provincial Executive office.
  • B: 10.4.4 The Resolutions Committee shall be responsible for receiving and reviewing advance resolutions and preparing resolution ballots. In particular, the Resolutions Committee shall:
    • Review all resolutions which have been duly submitted before the Convention;
    • Ensure the intent is clear and determine whether the intent is to amend the Constitution or Bylaws, to amend our internal or external Policies, or to call for some other action;
    • Group resolutions by subject matter or amalgamate them according to the intent of the resolutions;
    • Identify conflicts with SGP Principles, Constitution and Bylaws (C&B), and Policies;
    • For policy and C&B amendments, identify inconsistencies that could result from the adoption of the resolution.
    • For C&B amendments, ensure precise constitutional wordings are provided with the resolution. Assist in the drafting of such text if required.
    • Determine the order of presentation to Convention and make recommendations to Convention regarding the purpose of the resolution.
    • Prepare the resolutions ballot following established guidelines for “Bonser” ballots, so that any resolutions accepted by 75% of those voting, or rejected by 75% of those voting, are declared accepted or defeated, respectively, without debate.
  • B: 10.4.5 A Ballot Committee of two to three members shall be appointed by Executive to control and validate completed ballot packages returned in advance of Convention. Membership in the Ballot Committee is subject to review at Convention, and may be changed at that time. At Convention, the Ballot Committee shall be responsible for explaining and enforcing voting procedures, opening resolution and election ballots, tallying results, reporting results to Convention, and destroying ballots when so directed.

B: 10.5 Convention Timing:

  • B: 10.5.1 The Executive shall set a time for Annual Convention in accordance with Bylaw 5. Should there be a conflict with other Party activities or interests, the Provincial Executive is empowered to bring forward or delay the date of the Annual Convention by no more than two months. Such action shall require a two-thirds majority support from the Provincial Executive.
  • B: 10.5.2 The Executive shall ensure a call for nominations and resolutions is issued to all active and recently-lapsed members at least 90 days before the start of Convention.
  • B: 10.5.3 Resolutions and nominations for Executive office must be received by the designated officer or committee at least 60 days prior to Annual Convention.
  • B: 10.5.4 The Provincial Executive shall issue the official call to Annual Convention at least 60 days prior to the date of the Convention.
  • B: 10.5.5 Ballots for resolutions and Executive elections, with accompanying information packages, shall be issued to active and recently-lapsed members at least forty days prior to Convention.
  • B: 10.5.6 Ballots for resolutions and Executive elections that are completed and sent in prior to Convention must be sent in in accordance with published procedures, and must be received by the published deadline, or at least two business days prior to Convention.

B: 10.6 Procedures for Election of Officers:

  • B: 10.6.1 Nominations for Executive officers may be made in advance of Convention according to procedures administered by the Election Committee.
  • B: 10.6.2 All candidates for any provincial executive position must be nominated in writing by 3 members in good standing.
  • B: 10.6.3 Ballots for the election of Executive officers shall be designed and tabulated in accordance with the principles of instant-runoff (preferential) voting.
  • B: 10.6.4 “None of the above” shall be included on the ballot as a choice for each office, even if only a single nomination has been made for the office.
  • B: 10.6.5 Nominations may be made from the floor at Convention for a given Executive office if no valid advance nominations were made for that office, or if “None of the above” receives a majority of the votes cast.
  • B: 10.6.6 Nominees will be permitted up to three minutes in which to make an acceptance speech to the Convention, prior to the time set for the close of voting.
  • B: 10.6.7 Ballots for the election of Executive officers shall be counted on the last day of the Annual Convention.
  • B: 10.6.8 Results shall be declared for each office listed in the Provincial Executive Officers bylaw, in the order listed, before consideration of subsequent offices takes place.
  • B: 10.6.9 A given individual may be nominated for any number of Executive positions, but may only be elected to one. When ballots are counted for any office, the name of any individual already elected to a different office will be removed from the ballot.
  • B: 10.6.10 The installation of Provincial Executive officers shall take place at the last meeting prior to adjournment of the Convention and the Provincial Executive officers shall assume their offices immediately after such installation.

B: 10.7 Procedures for Resolutions:

  • B: 10.7.1 Members, Groups, Regional Steering Committees, and the Provincial Executive may submit resolutions for action at the Annual Convention.
  • B: 10.7.2 The Executive and Regional Steering Committees shall make reasonable efforts to ensure policy development work is coordinated among those planning to submit resolutions, and to encourage policy development in areas where an obvious need exists, and to ensure periodic review of existing policies and development of resolutions to archive or update where appropriate.
  • B: 10.7.3 No member or Group shall be constrained from submitting an independent resolution by virtue of having failed to participate in coordinated development committees, or by virtue of having participated in a committee which may oppose his (or its) resolution.
  • B: 10.7.4 The resolutions ballot shall follow established guidelines for “Bonser” ballots, so that any resolutions accepted by 75% of those voting, or rejected by 75% of those voting, are declared accepted or defeated, respectively, without debate.
  • B: 10.7.5 Resolutions which were not submitted in advance according to prescribed procedures and timelines may only be considered at Convention if this is acceptable to a two-thirds majority of members in attendance.
  • B: 10.7.6 Resolutions submitted from the floor, if allowed, and others which come to the floor because of inconclusive “Bonser” ballot results, shall be decided by discussion and a show-of-hands vote, unless the members in attendance choose a different procedure.

B: 10.8 Voting Procedures:

  • B: 10.8.1 Ballot packages shall be distributed in advance of Convention according to the following stipulations:
    • The Executive shall ensure an appropriate committee is designated to coordinate preparation and distribution of the ballot package.
    • Eligible recipients of the ballot package and timeline for distribution are as defined under 10.3 “Participation” and 10.5 “Timing,” above. Members who become eligible after initial distribution of ballot packages may receive ballot packages at Convention, or in advance if and as approved by the responsible committee.
    • The ballot package shall include or reference complete instructions to the voter.
    • The ballot package shall include a ballot for Executive elections, which shall be designed to support secret-ballot, instant-runoff (preferential) voting.
    • The election ballot shall include the names of those nominated in accordance with 10.5 “Timing” and 10.6 “Procedures for Election of Officers,” above. “None of the above” shall appear as a choice for all offices.
    • The election ballot package shall include or reference brief statements (“bios”) provided by the candidates on the ballot.
    • The ballot package shall include a “Bonser” ballot for resolutions. An administrative guideline for “Bonser” ballots shall be maintained under the provisions of Bylaw 11.
    • The resolutions ballot shall include the titles of all resolutions submitted in accordance with 10.5 “Timing” and 10.7 “Procedures for Resolutions,” above.
    • The resolutions ballot package shall include or reference the full text of all resolutions on the ballot.
    • Control procedures shall be established to ensure that only authorized ballots are cast, and that only members in good standing can vote, and that no individual can vote more than once. Such control procedures shall preserve the secrecy of election ballots.
  • B: 10.8.2 Completed ballots returned in accordance with established procedures shall be validated, controlled and secured by the Ballot Committee, and if submitted in advance of Convention, brought to Convention unopened.
  • B: 10.8.3 Additional ballots may be issued to members attending Convention who have not previously submitted a completed ballot package.
  • B: 10.8.4 At or near the start of Convention, the Chair shall announce to those in attendance the time by which completed ballots must be handed in to the Ballot Committee, and shall ensure that control procedures for submitting ballots are communicated to the assembly.
  • B: 10.8.5 A time shall be designated at Convention for the Ballot Committee and any designated scrutineers to retire, validate authenticity of ballot packages received at Convention and any others not previously validated, open the ballots (maintaining secrecy of election ballots) and tally the results. Any member in good standing has the option of scrutineering the count.
  • B: 10.8.6 At the time designated for dealing with resolutions, the Ballot Committee shall report those resolutions which passed or failed without debate, and those which must come to the floor for discussion and decision.
  • B: 10.8.7 Resolutions passed without discussion by “Bonser” ballot voting may be re-opened for discussion and voting at Convention if a majority of those present agree there is a need to do so in order to deal with unclarity of intent, mutual incompatibility, incompatibility with SGP principles, constitution or bylaws, or similarly compelling issues.
  • B: 10.8.8 At the time designated for Executive elections, the Ballot Committee shall report the results for each office in turn, allowing time for nominations from the floor and further balloting for that office if required, before reporting the results for the next office.
  • B: 10.8.9 Prior to reporting the results for each office, the Ballot Committee shall eliminate anyone nominated for that office who has already been elected to a different office, and shall recalculate the results according to the principles of instant-runoff voting.

B: 11.0 Administrative Guidelines

B: 11.1 Any Group or other body within the SGP, such as the Provincial Executive, Provincial Council, or Regional Steering Committee, as well as the membership acting as a whole at general meetings, may adopt and enforce administrative guidelines within the scope of that Group or body’s authority.

B: 11.1.1 Administrative guidelines may include procedural guidelines, standard forms, etc., and may be designated as mandatory or suggested.

B: 11.1.2 Guidelines shall not be adopted when in conflict with the constitution or bylaws of the adopting Group or body, or with those of the SGP. Where a conflict exists, the constitution or bylaws shall prevail.

B: 11.1.3 The Secretary or another designated officer of the Group or body shall maintain and keep current a file of any administrative procedures and guidelines adopted.

B: 11.1.4 The Secretary or designated officer of the Group or body shall make administrative procedures and guidelines available to any interested members of the Group or body, as well as to any coordinative bodies to which the Group or body reports.

B: 11.1.5 The Provincial Executive may adopt administrative procedures and guidelines that apply to the SGP as a whole, as well as those that apply specifically to the work of the Executive. Such procedures and guidelines are subject to any direction that may be adopted as a resolution at any SGP general membership meeting.

B: 11.1.6 The Provincial Secretary shall be responsible for maintaining administrative guideline files on behalf of the general membership and on behalf of the Provincial Executive.