Thursday, January 25, 2007

Last Monday and roles of PCOs provided by statute

During the county central committee meeting on Monday we introduced the bylaw change that would allow participation by "paid members" in local Democratic affairs. Right now, the only people who vote on what our local party does are PCOs, who are elected or appointed.

This change, that would allow pretty much anyone who is interested into the process, is important to me because it recognizes how things have changed in the past 100 years. Neighborhood political organizations are reflected in the PCO idea (only one representative for a geographic area). But, we don't live in an era of neighborhood connections, we live in an era of much more flexible social connections.

Anyway, there is some confusion about what roles PCOs are afforded under state law. Some think that PCOs are the only ones allowed to vote in our affairs, but that isn't actually true. There are very specific roles for PCOs:

What Roles are Provided for Precinct Committee Officers by statute?
  • Electing a chair and vice chair of opposite sexes during a county party reorganization (29A.80.030)
  • Electing a state committeeman and state committeewoman to the state central committee. (RCW 29A.80.020)
  • Electing a chair of a legislative district chair (RCW 29A.80.061)
  • Fill a vacancy on a major party ticket (RCW 29A.28.011)
  • Nominating qualified polling place workers (RCW 29A.44.430)
Beyond the above, votes on who to endorse, our budget, resolutions, etc..., our affairs can be open to all comers.

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