The revised Constitution of the Colorado Young Democrats was approved by a vote of the members on May 1, 2019. It serves to guide the functions and responsibilities of the organization.
CONSTITUTION OF THE COLORADO YOUNG DEMOCRATS
Last Updated May 1, 2019
We, the Colorado Young Democrats, hereby dedicate ourselves to organizing young people in order to promote their interest and involvement in the political process and the Democratic Party. We strive to better our state and to promote the principles of equality, opportunity, social justice, and freedom within our society. As Democrats, we aim to promote the principles of the platforms of the Colorado State Democratic Party and the Democratic National Committee. For these ends and upon these principles, we, the Colorado Young Democrats, do hereby establish ourselves and adopt this Constitution.
Name and Affiliation
Section 1. The name of this organization shall be the “Colorado Young Democrats” and may be appropriately referred to as “CYD.”
Section 2. This organization shall, without objection, be affiliated with and become part of the Young Democrats of America and the Colorado Democratic Party.
Section 1. This organization shall, to the greatest extent legal, possible and beneficial to Young Democrats, work in conjunction with the Colorado Democratic Party, as well as local Democratic organizations.
Section 2. This organization shall actively support to the extent legally allowed, all nominees of the local, state, and national Democratic parties.
Section 3. This organization shall not support or endorse any candidate who is not the official Democratic nominee for office and shall remain neutral in Democratic primaries.
Section 4. This organization may endorse or oppose non-candidate ballot initiatives by a unanimous vote of the executive board. If any board member chooses to recuse himself or herself from such a vote due to a conflict of interest or similar reason, a “unanimous vote” in this circumstance shall be defined as all voting board members, excluding the recused member.
Section 5. The executive board and this organization’s members shall not endorse or oppose candidates or ballot issues when representing himself or herself as a representative of this organization, unless this organization supports those candidates, as per the previous Sections of this Article.
Section 1. All Young Democrats in Colorado shall be eligible for membership in this organization. A Young Democrat is defined as a registered Democrat in the State of Colorado who has attained the age of sixteen (16) and not yet attained the age of thirty-six (36).
Section 2. Eligible Young Democrats may be required to, at the discretion of the executive board, register for membership with CYD and pay annual dues to be an active member of this organization.
Section 1. This organization shall be governed by an executive board, comprised of nine (9) members elected by popular vote of the membership.
Section 2. The executive board members shall, by a plurality vote, elect one board member to serve as chair and otherwise has discretion to organize themselves as they see fit, including, but not limited to, electing a vice chair or other positions deemed appropriate by a plurality vote of the board.
Section 3. The executive board shall meet at least six (6) times each year, with no more than two (2) meetings in any month qualifying to meet this obligation. In the event the executive board does not meet this obligation, the board shall be considered dissolved and a popular vote of the membership shall be held to determine a new board.
Section 4. Each executive board member shall attend at least seventy-five percent of the meetings of the executive board each year. In the event an executive board member fails to meet this obligation, this shall serve as grounds for removal by the other members of the executive board.
Section 5. Serving as an executive board member of this organization is contingent on maintaining eligibility as a member. In the event an executive board member loses that eligibility (i.e., due to change in age, political affiliation, or residency), and, upon reasonable notice, that board member either cannot or does not come into compliance with the requirements for membership, he or she shall be removed from the Board effective as of the next Board meeting.
Section 6. Any officer who actively undermines CYD, violates this Constitution, repeatedly fails to attend or participate in CYD meetings or activities, repeatedly fails to execute his or her duties, or who otherwise similarly frustrates the mission of CYD may be removed by a majority vote of serving Board members.
Section 7. In the event of a vacancy on the executive board the executive board shall appoint a replacement executive board member. At the board’s discretion, they may either appoint from this organization’s membership by a plurality vote or hold a special election. In either circumstance, the board shall fill any vacancy within thirty (30) days of the vacancy.
Section 8. The executive board shall have the power to create and dissolve special and/or temporary committees for specific purposes, defined by the executive board. These committees shall be composed of any group of two (2) or more members, appointed by the executive board.
Section 9. All expenses shall be made only to benefit this organization and shall be approved by the chair and one other executive board member who shall be selected for the term at the first executive board meeting following elections and upon vacancy thereafter by a plurality vote of the executive board. Documentation of all expenses and approvals shall be kept with all formal records of this organization.
Section 10. The executive board of this organization shall have sole authority over decisions of the organization, with the exception of the dissolution of the board. All decisions, except where stated otherwise, are considered binding with a majority vote of the entire executive board.
Section 11. In the event the sitting Chair of CYD chooses to run for elected office, statewide or county executive party office, or Young Democrats of America executive board, they must step down as Chair but may remain on the CYD Board. CYD Board members will then elect an interim Chair to serve until the election has taken place and the Chair will fill the Board role previously filled by the interim Chair. Should the former Chair win their election, the interim Chair will become the Chair of CYD until another board vote is held in accordance with Article IV, Section II. Should the former Chair lose their election, they will resume their role as Chair of CYD and the interim Chair will resume their previous role on the Board..
Section 1. Elections of the executive board shall be held every year in the month of April.
Section 2. The outgoing executive board shall be responsible for organizing elections, including the date, time, and location, each providing for reasonable attendance and participation of members and candidates for the executive board.
Section 3. The election shall be announced and sufficiently publicized by the outgoing executive board, including through all normal communication mediums and to all appropriate Democratic organizations, no later than twenty (20) days prior to the date of the election.
Section 4. Only eligible members of this organization may be candidates for the executive board. Members must be under the age of 36 at the end of their term (defined as May 1 of the applicable year) in order to be a candidate for any executive board position, including National Committee positions. Candidates may declare their candidacy at any time following the previous election but must declare their candidacy no later than twenty-four (24) hours prior to the time of the next scheduled election, in order to verify eligibility. No known declared candidates shall be excluded from being publicized when all other candidates are being publicized. All candidates shall be given equal opportunity to be promoted through the means of this organization.
Candidates for the executive board need not be present on the date of election to be eligible.
Section 5. The executive board shall be elected by a popular vote of this organization’s membership: four (4) members to be elected every odd year, and five (5) elected every even year, with the top four (4) or five (5) (respectively according to year) vote receiving candidates being elected to fill the open executive board positions.
_Section 6. _Voting may be conducted in any fashion that allows for the greatest participation of this organization’s membership, but shall include confidential, in-person voting on the date of the election. All voting methods shall include reasonable assurance of security to prevent fraud or vote manipulation, including a method to ensure that only votes cast by eligible members are tallied.
_Section 7. _Votes shall not be tallied by any candidate for the executive board, including candidates serving on the outgoing executive board. Candidates shall have the right to observe vote tallying.
Section 8. Any candidate for the executive board may, with reasonable cause, challenge the outcome of the election. In the event of such a challenge, the outgoing executive board shall compile and organize all relevant election records for review by the leadership of the Colorado Democratic Party, without the involvement of any outgoing executive board members or candidates for the executive board. If the leadership of the Colorado Democratic Party determines that the outcome of the election was in error, the winners determined by the Colorado Democratic Party shall take office with the incoming executive board, or as soon as possible thereafter.
_Section 9. _The total number of valid votes cast may be made public with the election results and must be provided to members upon request.
Section 10. The executive board members shall serve a term of two (2) years and are eligible for consecutive terms as long as they meet the criteria for membership. The term maybe reasonably extended or shortened to accommodate the actual date of the election.
National and State Committee Representatives
Section 1. This organization is attributed three (3) committee members to the National Committee of the Young Democrats of America. In accordance with the charter of the Young Democrats of America, the chair of the executive board shall serve as one (1) of the committee members. Concurrently with other board elections, CYD members shall elect two (2) eligible members of this organization, of different gender identities, to serve as the two (2) remaining committee members. Each appointee may be removed and replaced at will by a majority vote of the executive board.
Section 2. This organization is attributed one (1) committee member to both the State Central and Executive Committees and State Outreach Commission of the Colorado Democratic Party. The chair of the executive board shall appoint an eligible member of this organization to serve as this organization’s committee member on these committees.
Local Affiliated Organizations
Section 1. This organization shall, at the discretion of the executive board, recognize local organizations as affiliated, whether they are organized by region, county, city, school, or other reasonable community of interest. Not more than one organization shall be recognized to represent the same region, county, city, school, or other reasonable community of interest.
Section 2. Local affiliated organizations may each select one (1) representative to serve on the Colorado Young Democrats Advisory Board.
_Section 1. _The Colorado Young Democrats Advisory Board is an informal board that shall advise the executive board on all matters they and/or the executive board see fit.
Section 2. The Advisory Board shall consist of no more than one (1) representative from each local affiliated organization, chosen from their membership, as defined by their organization, and may include a number of individuals chosen by the executive board not to exceed the number of representatives from local affiliated organizations, but who may also be members of a local affiliated organization.
Section 3. No current member of the executive board shall be a voting member of the Advisory Board.
Section 4. The Advisory Board shall meet at least two (2) times each year and such meetings shall not occur in the same month. Meetings shall take place at the discretion of the advisory board members who may organize themselves in a manner they see fit, including the appointment of a chair and other leadership.
Section 5. The Advisory Board has the option to informally advise or submit formal recommendations to the executive board. All formal recommendations must be approved by a majority vote of the members of the Advisory Board.
Section 6. All formal recommendations shall be considered and voted on by the executive board, with implementation necessary by a majority vote. The recommendation and vote results shall be kept with all formal records of this organization.
Section 1. The executive board shall have the authority to draft bylaws or other guiding documents beneficial to serving the purposes outlined in this Constitution.
Section 2. No bylaws or other guiding documents shall supersede anything explicit or implied in this Constitution.
Changes to Constitution
Section 1. Changes to this Constitution can be made only by a vote of the members of this organization.
Section 2. The executive board can, at any time, call for a vote of the members to approve changes to this Constitution. Such a vote must be sufficiently publicized by the executive board, including through all normal communication mediums and to all appropriate Democratic organizations, and held no sooner than ten (10) days after the date of the announcement. In-person voting is not necessary for Constitutional changes so long as other reasonable means for voting are provided.
Section 3. Any member of this organization can propose changes to this Constitution by collecting a number of valid signatures from eligible members equal to the number of voters in the last executive board election. A vote on those proposed changes by this organization’s members shall take place at the discretion of the executive board, but no later than the next scheduled executive board election. Proposed changes and signatures can be submitted at any time, but must be submitted to the executive board no later than ten (10) days prior to the next scheduled executive board election for them to be voted on in that election. Proposed changes shall be sufficiently publicized by the executive board, including through all normal communication mediums and to all appropriate Democratic organizations.