North Marshall Precinct Meeting CHANGED TO: Thursday, February 14, 6:30 PM at Madison High School, to elect delegates to the Madison County Convention.
The Laurel Precinct will have a precinct meeting on Saturday, February 9, 2019, at 5:00 PM in the Laurel School Building.
Precinct Questions and Answers
Q1. How does a precinct become organized?
1.02 ORGANIZED PRECINCT A Precinct is organized and remains organized provided that, at a minimum, an annual or organizing precinct meeting is held each year at which:
- There is in attendance a quorum of registered Democrats who reside in the precinct;
- The meeting was convened according to notice, access and other requirements of this Plan;
- The required order of business for election of officers and delegates and for other business is completed at this meeting. And
- The precinct chair certifies to the county chair in writing the names of those in attendance, the names of officers and delegates elected, and the names, address, occupation and employer of the contributors. Funds collected are turned in to the County Treasurer.
Q2. What is a quorum?
- 5 registered Democrats residing in the precinct. Note below that statement saying an agreement for as many as two delegates may connect electronically.
1.06 QUORUM REQUIRED TO ORGANIZE PRECINCT AND TO ELECT PRECINCT OFFICERS AND MEMBERS OF THE PRECINCT COMMITTEE The required quorum for a precinct meeting held for the purpose of organizing the precinct or electing precinct officers and committee members of the precinct committee, electing delegates to the county convention or the filling of vacancies on the precinct committee shall consist of five (5) registered Democrats residing in the precinct. In precincts having one hundred (100) or fewer registered Democrats, five percent (5%) of such registered Democrats shall be sufficient to comprise the precinct committee and to constitute a quorum. By agreement of the county chair and either the precinct chair or the appointed chair for the meeting, as many as two designated, registered Democrats residing in such precinct may attend the precinct meeting by telephone or other telecommunications device and be considered as part of the quorum. The method of communications used to attend the meeting must provide a way to identify the participants as those who were authorized to attend the meeting by phone or telecommunications device.
Q3. How does the County Party notify registered Democrats in our County about the time and location of their precinct meeting?
Public notice at least 7 days in advance of the meeting is required. If the county has excellent access to broadband, the notice can be posted on the County Party website and/or social media. For others, publicizing in the local newspaper may be needed.
1.05 Notice Required. Public notice shall be given for all precinct meetings at least seven (7) days in advance of said precinct meetings in accordance with the guidelines set by the County Executive Committee and consistent with 0.04 “Publicize Meetings.” (0.04 Notice Required. Public notice shall be given for all precinct meetings at least seven (7) days in advance of said precinct meetings in accordance with the guidelines set by the County Executive Committee and consistent with 0.04 “Publicize Meetings.”)
1.05 When Held. Annual precinct meetings shall be held on a date designated by the county chair that is within the two (2) week period designated by the state chair pursuant to Section 4.08. In presidential election years, there shall be no two (2) week period allowed and the precinct meeting shall be held on the exact date designated by the state chair pursuant to Section 4.08. The county chair shall designate the time for the precinct meetings. Weekday precinct meetings shall begin no earlier than 6:00 PM and no later than 7:30 PM. Weekend meetings shall be held between the hours of 10:00 AM and 7:00 PM.
Q4. Can the precinct meetings be held at any location?
Annual precinct meetings must be held in a public facility accessible to all registered Democrats residing in the precinct. If each precinct is meeting independently, preferably that location will be the polling location. See Q5 regarding cluster meetings, and Q6 regarding rental costs.
1.05 Location. The annual precinct meetings shall be held at the polling place of each precinct or other facility within the precinct or nearby that is deemed appropriate by the precinct chair and/or the county chair. In the event that a precinct polling place should prove unsuitable, for whatever reason, an alternate meeting location may be used. Any alternate meeting facility must be approved in advance by the county chair and publicly announced seven (7) calendar days in advance of the meeting. In the event the precinct will be meeting at a location other than the precinct’s polling location, the precinct chair or acting precinct chair shall post notice of the alternate meeting location at the regular polling place. If the precinct’s polling location will not allow the posting of a meeting notice, the precinct chair or acting chair will notify the County Party Chair so a remedy can be found in a timely manner. In any case, the precinct meeting must be held in a public facility accessible and open to all registered Democrats residing in the precinct, except that when the precinct chair or acting precinct chair, wishes to meet in their precinct, and the county chair certifies that no public facility is available in the precinct, the precinct meeting may be held in a non- public facility accessible and open to all registered Democrats residing in the precinct.
Q5. Can more than one precinct meet at the same location? If so, does each precinct require a quorum?
Yes, cluster meeting is permitted and often encouraged. Not only does it cut-down on rental fees, but larger gatherings encourage more participation. However, please note below, that each precinct must still have the opportunity to meet independently to conduct business and must meet the quorum requirements.
1.05 Multiple precinct meetings at the same location and time are permissible under this Plan so long as such an arrangement is agreed to in advance by the county party Chair, and by the precinct chair or acting precinct chair of each of the affected precincts…The group meeting may be structured so participating precincts share agenda items common to all precincts, but must allow the precincts to meet individually to elect officers and/or delegates to the county convention or conduct other business specific to an individual precinct. Each individual precinct meeting in this fashion must meet the quorum requirements (five (5) registered Democrats residing in the precinct.)
Q6. Some polling locations are charging a fee making it cost prohibitive. What can I do?
NC Statute 163 article 9, §163-99 states that polling locations and other public facilities are authorized to permit use of the building without charge, except for custodial fees. This information is also included in your precinct packets.
The first sentence is below:
“The governing authority having control over schools or other public buildings which have facilities for group meetings, or where polling places are located, is hereby authorized and directed to permit the use of such buildings without charge, except custodial and utility fees, by political parties, as defined in G.S. 163-96, for the express purpose of annual or biennial precinct meetings and county and district conventions.”
Q7. Is there a set agenda for 2019 Precinct Meetings?
1.05 Order of Business for Odd-numbered year agenda
- The election of three (3) registered Democrats of the precinct as precinct officers;
- The election of at least two (2) other registered Democrats of the precinct as members of the precinct committee;
- The election of registered Democrats of the precinct as delegates to the county convention; ( CLICK HERE to see number of delegates per precinct. The link I sent yesterday allows you to view a file for your county only.)
- The chair, or presiding officer, and the secretary/treasurer shall certify to the county chair the names, addresses, race, gender, telephone numbers and email addresses of the precinct officers, the members of the precinct committee, and the delegates to the county convention elected at the annual precinct meeting within five (5) days;
- Proposing and adopting resolutions for consideration at the county convention.
- Other business related to the affairs of the precinct.
Q8. How does the County Party notify NCDP that precinct meetings were actually held?
Precincts must submit Precinct Meeting Certification & Registration Forms to the County Party within 5 days of the precinct meeting. See pages 11 & 12 of the NCDP Precinct Packet for registration forms and page 13 for the Certification Form. These form must include the time, date and location of the meetings and indicate a quorum was present. The County Party then enters data from the registration forms in VoteBuilder. See Q17 regarding post-meeting data entry.
Q9. How much information must attendees include on the registration forms?
Ask precinct meeting organizers to collect all requested information on the form, including full names as per their voter registration (so they can be found in VoteBuilder), addresss, phone numbers, email addresses, and employer and occupation. The County Treasurer will need this information to comply with federal elections reporting guidelines, and the county party will use this information to establish mailing and volunteer lists. NOTE: Although not indicated on the form, be sure to indicate if donation was in cash or check.
Q10. Why does NCDP ask for a Sustaining Fund? How does the County Party report what is collected?
The 2019 Sustaining Fund fee structure is based on a calculation of $0.02 per registered voter in each county, with a minimum county buy-in of $250 and a maximum not to exceed $5000. For the majority of counties this fee structure significantly reduces the financial burden on the local party, while still providing the North Carolina Democratic Party with the funds necessary to support and grow our state- wide infrastructure. Examples of the support provided includes access to VoteBuilder, training, and meeting materials.
When collecting donations, the maximum cash donation per individual is $50. Precincts should submit donations to the county party as collected, for example if someone gives $5 cash, write that amount next to their name and submit the $5 cash along with a copy of the form to the County Party. Paper clipping the donation to the registration form is a good way to keep donations organized. The County Party Treasurer will report these donations to the Board of Elections, and will submit the sustaining fund to NCDP.
CLICK HERE to view sustaining fund and delegate allocations by county.
Q11. Must the precinct vice chair be the opposite gender of the precinct chair? Can immediate family members both serve as precinct officers?
Although recommended where possible, the requirement that chairs and vice chairs be of opposite gender has been eliminated. My interpretation of 1.03 is immediate family members who do not reside in the same household may serve on the precinct committee.
1.03 Precinct Officers. The precinct committee shall have as officers a chair, a vice chair, a secretary/treasurer, no less than two (2) committee members and any others as the body might desire. The vice chair should where possible be of the opposite gender of the chair and should, where possible, be of a race other than that of the chair. No officers of the precinct committee shall be from the same immediate family residing in the same household.
Q12. What are the responsibilities of the officers? Can you keep it simple?
Duties of the officers are provided on pages 5-6 in the 2019 Precinct Packet. However, often those descriptions can be overwhelming when trying to recruit precinct officers. For a perspective from an experienced precinct volunteer, refer pages 5-10 of the 2018 Precinct Leader’s Guide.
Q13. Resolutions – Why is it important to write a resolution in a consistent format? Where does it go from here? Must it be in writing?
So what is a resolution? A resolution is a formal expression of opinion, will, or intent by an official body or assembled group; a declaration submitted to an assembly for adoption. The person/group submitting the resolution is typically very concerns about the issue being addressed, therefore hopes the resolution will advance through the channels to be considered by NCDP.
Because resolutions are compiled with other resolutions passed at precinct meetings, and county and district conventions, consistent formatting is necessary. This also improves the likelihood of a resolution being considered for approval.
All resolutions must be in writing, preferably in electronic form as a Microsoft Word document. Handwritten or verbal resolutions will not be accepted for consideration.
The path a resolution takes is: Precinct > County Convention* > District Convention* > NCDP Resolutions Committee> NCDP State Executive Committee or State Convention > Appropriate Next Step as resolved in the resolution*
*If a resolution is local in nature, it may not be advanced to the District Convention or NCDP. Resolutions addressed to the NCGA will be advanced to the NCDP State Legislative Policy Committee.
View the NCDP Guide on how to write a resolution Here .
Q14. We’ve tried everything and some of our precincts are unable to meet during the February 4-18 scheduled window required by NCDP Chair, Wayne Goodwin. What do we do?
The state chairman may provide waivers to those counties who have precincts that are unable to meet during the two week window due to extraordinary events (snow, ice). Please contact NCDP Deputy Executive Director, Doug Wilson, email@example.com to request a waiver.
Q15. What happens if a precinct doesn’t meet due to inclement weather or doesn’t have a quorum? Are there make-up dates?
1.05 In the event that the originally scheduled meeting could not be held successfully due to a lack of a quorum or any other reason, there shall be a second meeting called within two (2) weeks of the original meeting date. The county chair, in consultation with the precinct chair or organizer, shall set the date, time and location for the second meeting. The county chair shall offer the precinct chair or organizer whatever reasonable assistance is needed to organize the precinct. In the event that a quorum is not present for the second scheduled precinct meeting, that precinct shall be considered an unorganized precinct.
Q16. We did everything in Q15 and a precinct is still unorganized. What now?
1.05 Unorganized or Newly Created Precinct. A precinct that did not meet on the originally scheduled meeting date or on the second meeting date set for an annual meeting or is newly created by the Board of Elections shall be considered unorganized and shall not be entitled to send delegates to the county convention or be represented on the county executive committee and shall not have voting privileges until organized. The county chair, in consultation with the precinct chair or organizer, shall set the date, time and location for the second meeting. The county chair shall offer the precinct chair or organizer whatever reasonable assistance is needed to organize the precinct.
Q17. YAY…Success! Our precincts had successful organizing meetings and have turned-in all their registration forms, certifications and sustaining funds within 5 days to the County Party. What does the County Party need to do now?
- Enter all information from the registration forms into VoteBuilder. Be sure to include:
- Newly elected officers and precinct committee members
- All registered Democrats in attendance (in person or electronic)
- Delegates to the county convention
- Provide the County treasurer with copies of the registration form to report donations to the BOE, along with the donations for deposit. NOTE: Although not on the registration sheet, be sure to indicate if donation was check or cash.
- Send sustaining fund to NCDP.
- Compile resolutions in electronic form (preferably Word) for county convention.
Q18. I might have more questions. Where do I find answers?
Mars Hill Precinct Meeting: May 3, 2018, 6:00 PM at Broyhill Social Hall, Mars Hill University. Will be discussing preparations needed to have a precinct ready for the May 8th Primary Election and how Get out The Vote is progressing across the County.
The Democratic Precinct and County training planned for Saturday, April 28 from 9am-2pm at the Yancey Senior Citizens Center is quickly approaching. Each precinct should plan to send at least 2 or 3 people to get this training which would normally cost our Democratic officers several thousand dollars. 11th Congressional District is doing this to increase GOTV (get out the vote) for FREE. The three counties training together are Yancey, Mitchell, and Madison. You do not have to be an officer to attend. In order to provide breakfast and lunch we need to have a head count. Please click on the link below if you can attend. Please RSVP by April 21 by clicking on this link https://act.myngp.com/forms/-3901516565023750400
Date: February 5, 2018:
Location: Your Individual Precinct Polling Place
February 12, 2018: 1st Makeup date
February 19, 2018: 2nd Makeup date
Location: The Polling Place for Each Precinct
Time: Chairs set their own time for their Precinct Meeting