ARTICLE I Name and Jurisdiction
SECTION 1.01. Name. The name of the organization shall be the FLORIDA REPUBLICAN ASSEMBLY (the FRA).
SECTION 1.02. Jurisdiction. The jurisdiction of the Florida Republican Assembly shall be within the state of Florida.
ARTICLE II Powers
SECTION 2.01. The powers of the Florida Republican Assembly shall be:
(a) To be a Chapter of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies with all the
(b) To direct, manage, supervise and control its business, property and funds, and to
carry out its objectives.
(c) To create and charter local Republican Assemblies throughout Florida, and to
supervise and coordinate them.
ARTICLE III Objectives
SECTION 3.01. The objectives of the Florida Republican Assembly are:
(a) To advance true conservatism and elect true conservatives at all levels of the
Republican Party and all levels of government throughout the state of Florida;
(b) To provide through this organization a practical program for the betterment of the
Republican Party within the state of Florida and of the various political subdivisions of the state of Florida;
(c) To advance the Principles, Beliefs and Objectives of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies, and
(d) To provide a legal umbrella for members of the state’s various tax-exempt conservative groups who cannot adequately express themselves politically within their existing structures.
ARTICLE IV Composition
SECTION 4.01. The Florida Republican Assembly shall consist of at-large members of the statewide Republican Assembly; and also of local Republican Assemblies which have been chartered by the Board of Directors of the FRA in the manner provided in these Bylaws which continue to comply with the Bylaws of the FRA and of the NFRA as adopted or amended. A local chapter may petition the FRA Board of Directors to subdivide its geographical area into smaller local chapters at need.
ARTICLE V Officers and Directors
SECTION 5.01. Elective Officers. The elective officers of the Florida Republican Assembly shall be a President, First Vice President, Second Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer; as well as two National Directors who, along with the President, shall represent the FRA on the NFRA’s National Board of Directors.
SECTION 5.02. Additional Officers. The President shall appoint a General Counsel, who shall be a member of the Florida state bar; a Chaplain, a Parliamentarian and a Sergeant-at- Arms. He shall also have power to appoint an Executive Director and Regional or Congressional District chairmen at his discretion, who shall be subject to confirmation by the Executive Committee. He shall also have power to appoint other specialized officers and representatives of the FRA at his discretion as needs arise. If the President should determine that there is a need for paid staff, the Board of Directors shall have power to authorize and determine said compensation.
SECTION 5.03. Qualifications.
(a) Officers of the Florida Republican Assembly and of all local chapters must be members in good standing of the FRA, and Republicans by voter registration.
(b) The office of any officer or director of the Florida Republican Assembly who misses two consecutive meetings of the Board of Directors between Annual Conventions shall automatically terminate, unless such non-attendance is excused by a vote of the Board of Directors.
SECTION 5.04. Election of Officers. The elective officers shall be elected at the Annual Convention in each odd numbered year in accordance with these Bylaws and shall serve for the period of two (2) years and until their successors are elected and qualified.
SECTION 5.05. Outgoing Officers. At the conclusion of each Annual Convention, outgoing officers shall be empowered to continue to perform their duties only on matters which were initiated and approved prior to the close of the Convention and which matters shall be completed within a fifteen (15) day period following the close of the Convention.
Outgoing officers shall turn over all documents, bank accounts, or other property of the Florida Republican Assembly to their successors immediately, but in no case more than fifteen (15) days following the close of the Convention at which their successors are elected.
SECTION 5.06. Liability of Officers. No officer or director shall be held personally liable for any debts or obligations of the Florida Republican Assembly except those personally guaranteed by that officer or director, and the Florida Republican Assembly shall indemnify each officer or director against claims made against them arising from their legitimate and proper service to the FRA.
ARTICLE VI Executive Committee
SECTION 6.01. Purpose. There shall be an Executive Committee which shall exercise the delegated authority of the State Board of Directors to govern the FRA, except where such authority is expressly reserved herein to the Board or where the Board takes specific action to restrict the Executive Committee’s authority.
SECTION 6.02. Composition. The Executive Committee shall consist of the elective officers of the FRA, as well as the Executive Director if such exists. The General Counsel shall serve as a nonvoting member; and other appointive officers may serve as non-voting members at the discretion of the President, or as voting members by consent of the Board of Directors.
SECTION 6.03. Meetings. The Executive Committee shall hold regular meetings, in no case less often than once per quarter. With the unanimous consent of all members, it may choose to vote in appropriate situations by telephone conference call, FAX machine, electronic mail or other means of telecommunication.
SECTION 6.04. Quorum. A quorum for Executive Committee meetings shall consist of at least five of its voting members.
ARTICLE VII Board of Directors
SECTION 7.01. Composition. The Board of Directors of the Florida Republican Assembly shall consist of the members of the Executive Committee (including non-voting members, unless disallowed by the Board), and the President and two elected State Directors from each local chapter.
SECTION 7.02. Powers. (a) The Board of Directors shall have the control and management of all the affairs, properties, and funds of the Florida Republican Assembly, and shall have full power to introduce, approve and implement all actions and activities necessary and proper for the functioning of the FRA, subject to the authority of these Bylaws.
(b) The Board of Directors may, for good cause and after a hearing, remove any officer or 3
director by a two-thirds vote of the entire Board of Directors; provided such officer or director shall have been sent by the Secretary of the FRA, by certified mail, a notice containing a copy of the charges against him at least fifteen (15) days prior to the hearing thereon, said notice specifying the time and place of the meeting, and that the officer or director shall be provided the opportunity to present a full defense.
(c) The Board of Directors may pass resolutions concerning legislation and policies, except those excluded in this article, by a two-thirds vote of the members present at any meeting.
SECTION 7.03. Meetings. The Board of Directors shall meet at such times and places as may be determined by action of the Board, by call of the President, or by written request of one- third of the members of the Board, provided that there shall be at least two meetings each year. A written notice of the time and place of all meetings of the Board of Directors shall be sent to each Board member not less than fifteen (15) days prior to said meetings.
SECTION 7.04. Special Meetings. The Board of Directors may without meeting together, transact business by mail, e-mail, facsimile, or by conference call of a majority of the Board, by voting on questions submitted to them by or with the approval of the President.
SECTION 7.05. Appeal. Any action taken by the Board of Directors may be appealed to a Convention of the Florida Republican Assembly.
SECTION 7.06. Resolutions and Endorsements. Any candidate proposed to be voted upon by the electorate shall not be endorsed by the Board of Directors unless (1) there is no Republican Assembly in the district in which an election is being held, or (2) if the Republican Assemblies within such district do not hold a convention to consider endorsing in such election. Statewide and Congressional candidates shall be endorsed only at a regular or special Convention of the FRA. Endorsements regarding public initiatives and referenda as well as Republican Party questions shall be made in the same manner as candidate endorsements.
Local Republican Assemblies
SECTION 8.01. Governing Authority. The Florida Republican Assembly shall be the sole body of authority over, recognition of, and representation for Republican Assemblies within the State of Florida. Groups purporting to be “Republican Assemblies” which are not recognized and chartered by NFRA Florida shall have no representation on any body of the FRA; shall not use the terms “Republican Assembly”, “RA”, or “Republican Wing of the Republican Party”; and shall not be entitled to any representation on any committees of the Republican Party of Florida (should such representation become available) or at any Convention of the NFRA.
SECTION 8.02. Location. Republican Assemblies may be formed and chartered, as the Bylaws hereinafter provide, in any geographical entity of the state of Florida.
SECTION 8.03. Ratification of Bylaws. Every local Republican Assembly shall ratify and agree to be bound in all things by the Bylaws of the Florida Republican Assembly and of the NFRA as well as amendments thereto. Acceptance of a charter from the FRA by any local Republican Assembly shall constitute a binding contract in this regard.
SECTION 8.04. Structure. A local Republican Assembly shall have jurisdiction within the boundaries of a fixed geographical area, approved by FRA Board of Directors at the time of the local chapter’s chartering, and shall be the only such Republican Assembly in that territory. Suchterritory may be divided into additional Republican Assemblies by the FRA Board of Directors upon petition by the local chapter.
SECTION 8.05. Bylaws. Each Republican Assembly shall adopt its own bylaws, which shall be in conformance with FRA and NFRA Bylaws, and shall be subject to review by the Board of Directors of the FRA and of the NFRA.
SECTION 8.06. Qualifications for Membership. Members of each local Republican Assembly shall be those American citizens of good moral character who are Republicans by voter registration or by affiliation and who agree to and uphold the Principles of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies.
SECTION 8.07. Action on Applications. The Board of Directors of a local Republican Assembly shall take action on all applications for membership within its geographical jurisdiction within thirty (30) days or at a regular meeting; otherwise, any application shall be automatically approved and the new member shall be accepted with the right to vote. Any duly rejected application shall be reported within ten (10) days to the Secretary of the Florida Republican Assembly. The Board of Directors of the Florida Republican Assembly may review any rejected application and determine whatever action is deemed appropriate.
SECTION 8.08. Transfer of Membership. Any active member may transfer his membership from one local Republican Assembly to another at any time. Acceptance of the transferred member immediately terminates his membership in his former local Republican Assembly. The member shall pay the difference, if any, between the membership dues of the two local Republican Assemblies involved.
SECTION 8.09. Initial Organization. The FRA Board of Directors shall have power to approve the formal application of a new Republican Assembly for chartering if and when its application includes the following:
(1) Ratification of the Bylaws of the Florida Republican Assembly and of the NFRA;
(2) Bylaws consistent with the FRA and NFRA Bylaws;
(3) A list of at least ten dues-paid members containing their names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses (where available) and chapter office titles; and
(4) Dues for each RA member at the rate set by the State Board of Directors (which shall include such dues as are required by the NFRA).
SECTION 8.10. Continuing Requirements. Each chapter shall submit a current list of the names of its officers and members (with addresses, phone numbers and email addresses), and pay appropriate annual dues therefore, not later than April 30 of each year, and shall submit a separate, current listof its officers and members not later than two weeks prior to any State Convention if such Convention should fall more than three months before or after April 30. Each chapter shall submit the names (with address, phone number and email address) of new chapter officers within two weeks of their election. Failure to comply with this provision shall empower the FRA Board of Directors to suspend or terminate the chapter’s charter. Any chapter losing its charter under this provision may apply for reinstatement at the next meeting of the FRA Board of Directors by submitting the missing items to the President at or before such meeting.
SECTION 8.11. State Membership. Any person qualified to become a member of a local Republican Assembly but residing in a geographical area without a local Assembly may join the Florida Republican Assembly without holding membership in a local Assembly if they otherwise fulfill all conditions of membership in the FRA. The FRA Board of Directors shall directly act on such membership applications. Upon the chartering of a local Assembly, members of the FRA residing within the area served by that local Assembly shall automatically become members of that Republican Assembly.
ARTICLE IX Conventions
SECTION 9.01. Time and Place. A Convention of the Florida Republican Assembly shall be held annually at a location and a time determined by the President of the FRA within the months of June through August inclusive. If the President has not set the time and location for a Convention by ten (10) months after the previous year’s Convention, the FRA Board of Directors shall have power to do so in his place; and the Board shall have power to require that the location of annual Conventions rotate around the state.
SECTION 9.02. Special Conventions. In case of an emergency, special Conventions may be called by the President or by one-third (1/3) of the members of the Board of Directors. The call for a special Convention shall specify the subjects to be considered, and no subjects shall be considered that are not so specified.
SECTION 9.03. Call. The Secretary of the FRA shall mail to the President and Secretary of each chartered Republican Assembly an official call to the Annual Convention and email said call to every Florida Republican Assembly member for whom an email address has been submitted.
SECTION 9.04. Officers. The officers of each Convention shall be the officers of the FRA. At or prior to any Convention the President may appoint a Recording Secretary of the Convention to assist the President and the Secretary.
SECTION 9.05. Convention Committees. At each duly called Convention, or prior thereto, the 6
President shall appoint a Committee on Credentials with power to enforce this Article, and may appoint a Committee on Resolutions, a Committee on Bylaws, a Committee on Nominations and such other committees as he may deem proper.
SECTION 9.06. Elected Delegates. Each chapter which is in good standing of the FRA at the time of the State Convention shall be entitled to one Delegate for each five (5) members in good standing carried on the chapter’s active membership roll whose name and dues were included in the requirement of Section 8.10.
SECTION 9.07. Delegates-at-Large. All members of the FRA Board of Directors and all Past Presidents of the FRA who remain members in good standing shall be Delegates-at-
Large at all State Conventions, and shall not be counted in the number of Delegates accorded their chapter by Section 9.06.
SECTION 9.08. Noncompliant Chapters. Notwithstanding Section 9.06 above, a chapter which remains recognized by the FRA but fails to comply with the credentialing provisions of
Section 8.10 above shall be entitled only to its Delegates-at-Large at the State Convention.
SECTION 9.09. Election of Delegates and Alternates. Each Delegate and Alternate shall be elected by the membership of his local chapter. Any Republican Assembly in good standing, at the time of electing its Delegates for a Convention as herein specified, may elect one Alternate for each Delegate. Said Delegates, Alternates, and all Delegates-at- Large shall be active members in good standing of the Republican Assemblies they represent.
SECTION 9.10. Registration Fee. The Board of Directors shall establish the registration fee to be paid to the FRA by all members attending any state Convention. No Delegate, Delegate-at-Large, nor Alternate shall be entitled to vote in a Convention unless and until his registration fee has been paid. The profit or loss accruing from any Convention shall be borne by the FRA.
SECTION 9.11. Voting.
(a) In all voting, a majority shall rule, unless otherwise provided in the Bylaws.
(b) In all Conventions of the Florida Republican Assembly, each accredited Delegate and Delegate-at-Large shall be entitled to cast one vote.
(c) There shall be no voting by proxy at any meeting.
(d) There shall be no cumulative voting nor shall any person vote as both a Delegate-at- Large and as a Delegate or Alternate.
(e) A quorum shall consist of one-third (1/3) of Delegates and Delegates-at-Large attending the Convention.
SECTION 9.12. Endorsement of Candidates. Endorsements of candidates shall be made only by the affirmative vote of two-thirds of those present and voting at a regular or special Convention of the Florida Republican Assembly. Only one person may be endorsed for a particular office. Endorsement may be for candidates for public office, for or against recall, constitutional amendments, initiatives or referenda, or for Republican party offices.
ARTICLE X Nomination and Election of Officers
SECTION 10.01. Eligibility. Any active member in good standing of the Florida Republican Assembly shall be eligible to any elective office, provided that the person is qualified under Section 5.03; but no person shall be submitted as a candidate for any office without his consent.
SECTION 10.02. Accredited Voters. Before the opening of polls, the Secretary shall provide a list of the Delegates and Delegates-at-Large as shown by the report of the Committee on Credentials. No Delegate or Delegate-at-Large shall be allowed to vote unless his name appears on the list.
SECTION 10.03. Ballots. Voting on endorsements or for officers of the FRA shall be by ballot only, unless there is in the opinion of the convention Chairman a motion to hold the vote by standing agreed to by two thirds of the voting Delegates or if the election is unopposed.
SECTION 10.04. Election of National Convention Delegates and Alternates. Any active member in good standing of the Florida Republican Assembly shall be eligible to be elected a Delegate or Alternate to the NFRA National Convention, provided that the person is qualified under Section 5.03; but no person shall be submitted as a candidate without his consent.
ARTICLE XI Endorsement of Local Candidates
SECTION 11.01. Two-thirds Vote of an Endorsing Convention. Endorsements of local candidates for public office may be made only by a two-thirds vote of an endorsing convention, at a physical meeting composed of equal representation of all Republican Assemblies within the district (in whole or in part) from which the candidate proposed to be endorsed is to be elected, or the official proposed to be recalled is an elected official. The temporary chairman shall be the ranking state officer in the particular district within which the candidate is to be elected or the officer is to be recalled. Where the particular district has officers of equal rank, lot shall determine the temporary chairman. Endorsement may be for candidates for public office, for or against recall, initiative or referendum, or for Republican party office.
SECTION 11.02 Limitations on Endorsing.
(a) Neither the FRA nor any local Republican Assembly shall endorse any candidate for any public office, whether partisan or non-partisan, unless such candidate is clearly affiliated with the Republican Party.
(b) The FRA President, upon being notified prior to an election, or between elections, of any alleged infraction of the Bylaws concerning endorsements shall immediately conduct an investigation of the alleged infraction and take whatever action is deemed necessary to protect the endorsement privilege and good name of the FRA.
SECTION 11.03. Effect of Endorsement. Endorsements by a local endorsing convention shall convey the endorsement of the Florida Republican Assembly and the NFRA.
Vacancies in Office Between Conventions
SECTION 12.01. President. In the event of a vacancy in the office of President occurring between annual Conventions, the First Vice President shall become President for the remainder of his predecessor’s term. However, if for any reason the vacancy should persist for 60 days, the President of the NFRA may appoint a replacement from among the membership of the FRA or any member of the NFRA Board of Directors to serve until a qualified successor may be chosen by a state Convention.
SECTION 12.02. Other Officers. In the event of a vacancy in one or more of the other elected offices of the FRA occurring between annual Conventions, the Board of Directors shall elect a qualified member to fill the office until the next annual Convention, at which time the Convention shall fill the remaining term of office. Should the majority of known officers become unable or unwilling to fulfill their roles as officers of the FRA, the President of the NFRA is authorized to appoint temporary officers and to call a Convention for the selection of permanent officers and for the general reorganization of the FRA.
ARTICLE XIII Termination of Charter and Membership
SECTION 13.01. Non-payment. Any local Republican Assembly more than sixty (60) days in arrears for any indebtedness to the FRA shall be considered not-in-good-standing and may be suspended by action of the Board of Directors, if at least thirty (30) days before such action, notice of said indebtedness shall have been duly sent by certified mail by the Secretary of the FRA to the last reported President and Secretary of such local Republican Assembly. The Board of Directors may restore such local Republican Assembly to full membership in the FRA upon payment of its indebtedness.
SECTION 13.02. Non-Attendance. Any local Republican Assembly that fails for two (2) consecutive years to present a Delegate to the Annual Convention of the FRA shall be considered not-ingood-standing and may have its Charter revoked by action of the Board of Directors, provided that at least thirty (30) days before such action, notice of said action shall have been duly sent by certified mail by the Secretary of the FRA to the last reported President and Secretary of such local Republican Assembly. The Board of Directors may restore such local Republican Assembly to full membership in the FRA upon showing good and sufficient cause.
SECTION 13.03. Discipline. Any local Republican Assembly which fails to conform to the Bylaws of the FRA and the NFRA may have its charter suspended or revoked, or may otherwise be disciplined, by a two-thirds vote of the entire Board of Directors; provided, that at least thirty (30) days before such action, notice of such intended action be sent by certified mail by the Secretary of the FRA to the last reported President and Secretary of such local Republican Assembly.
SECTION 13.04. Appeal. If the Board of Directors shall suspend or revoke the charter of a local Republican Assembly or shall otherwise discipline it, the Secretary of the FRA shall send a notice of such action within fifteen (15) days by certified mail to the last reported President and Secretary of said local Republican Assembly. The said local Republican Assembly, within thirty (30) days from the date of mailing of such notice and not less than ten (10) days before the next Convention of the FRA, may file with the Secretary of the FRA written notice of appeal. This appeal shall be considered at the next Convention of the FRA, unless filed less than ten (10) days prior thereto; in the latter instance, said appeal shall be considered and decided by a two-thirds vote of the Board of Directors at the next Board of Directors Meeting following the Convention.
SECTION 13.05. Effect. Any local Republican Assembly that shall for any cause cease to be a member of NFRA Florida shall relinquish the name “Republican Assembly,” and shall not thereafter use the name, emblem or insignia of “Republican Assembly”, “Republican Wing of the Republican Party” or “NFRA Florida” in any manner whatsoever. Officers of a local Republican Assembly whose charter has been revoked shall turn over all moneys and documents properly belonging to said chapter to a duly authorized representative of the FRA Board of Directors at a time and place designated by said representative.
SECTION 13.06 Termination and Discipline of Individual Members.
(a) Any individual member of the Florida Republican Assembly may have his membership terminated, or may otherwise be disciplined, after a hearing, by two-thirds (2/3) vote at a meeting of the Board of Directors where a quorum is present, provided that at least thirty (30) days before such action, notice of such intended action shall have been duly sent by certified mail by the Secretary of the FRA to said member, whenever the Board has determined that the named member has:
(1) publicly supported or registered as a member of a political party other than the Republican Party;
(2) used his name and title as a member of the FRA or any local Republican Assembly in publicly advocating that the electorate should not vote for the Republican nominee for any elected political office;
(3) used his name and title as a member of the FRA to give support to or encourage the election of a candidate of another party to an elected public office where said candidate is opposed by a duly-nominated Republican candidate;
(4) used his name and title as a member of the FRA to prematurely endorse (prior to a proper act of endorsement by the RA) candidates running for office in the Florida Republican Party;
(5) opposed all or part of the Principles of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies; or
(6) otherwise brought discredit or disrepute upon the FRA or the NFRA.
(b) If the Board of Directors shall terminate membership or shall otherwise discipline any such member, the Secretary of the FRA shall send notice of such action within (15) days by certified mail to said member. The said member, within thirty (30) days from the date of mailing such notice, and not less than ten (10) days before the date of the first session of the next Convention of the FRA, may file with the Secretary of the FRA written notice of appeal. This appeal shall be considered at the next Convention of the FRA, unless filed less than ten (10) days prior to the date of the first session thereof; in the latter instance said appeal shall be considered and decided by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Board of Directors following that Convention. (c) Any individual member so terminated from membership in the FRA shall immediately upon such termination cease to claim membership in, or holding of any office in or official relationship with the FRA or any local Republican Assembly, and shall also immediately surrender to the Secretary of the FRA or his designated representative any and all documents, records, emblems, insignia, funds, or other devices or properties of any nature whatsoever belonging to the FRA or any local Republican Assembly. Said terminated member shall not thereafter use the name, emblem, or insignia of “Republican Assembly”, “Republican Wing of the Republican Party”, “FRA” or “Florida Republican Assembly” in any manner whatsoever.
ARTICLE XIV Parliamentary Authority
SECTION 14.01. The latest edition of Robert’s Rules of Order shall be the parliamentary authority for all matters of procedure not specifically addressed in the Bylaws of the Florida Republican Assembly or of the NFRA.
ARTICLE XV Amendments to Bylaws
SECTION 15.01. Place and Vote Needed. Amendments to these Bylaws shall be made only at a regular or special Convention of the Florida Republican Assembly by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Delegates and Delegates-at-Large present and voting. Proposed amendments
shall be submitted to the FRA Secretary not less than fifty (50) days prior to said Convention, and shall be referred to a Committee on Bylaws for consideration.
SECTION 15.02. Provisional Use. During any period wherein the FRA’s charter has not yet been granted or has been suspended or revoked; or during any reorganization under Section 12.02; the FRA shall operate under the Model State Bylaws adopted by the NFRA Board of Directors, until and unless it has formally adopted bylaws which are certified as consistent with the Bylaws of the NFRA by the NFRA President. During such a provisional period, an organizing Convention of the FRA shall have power to adopt or amend such bylaws without reference to the normal procedure contemplated in this article.
SECTION 15.03. Severability. If any part, article, section or subsection of these Bylaws shall be held invalid, contrary to state or federal laws, contrary to the Bylaws of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies, or contrary to the rules of the state or national Republican Party for any reason, such holding shall not be construed to impair or invalidate the remainder of said Bylaws, notwithstanding such holding.
SECTION 15.04. Publication. At the conclusion of each Convention where any amendments are made to the Bylaws, the Bylaws Committee shall cause and supervise the printing of the Bylaws as in effect at the end of that Convention. Such amended Bylaws shall be submitted to the Secretary of the NFRA within fifteen (15) days of the Convention amending and thereafter made available to Florida Republican Assembly membership.
These Bylaws of the Florida Republican Assembly submitted by the Bylaws Committee, Rod D. Martin, Chairman; and approved by the Florida Republican Assembly State Convention, October 3, 2009, held at Kissimmee, Florida.
SECTION 3.04(d). Qualifications of NFRA officials. No officer, appointee, or director of the NFRA shall be a duly-filed candidate for, or hold, any partisan, remunerative, elected public office, other than an office within the Republican Party.
The forgoing Section of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies’ Bylaws is hereby included in the Bylaws of the Florida Republican Assembly, to assure that the President and other national officers of the FRA who become an officer, appointee or director of the NFRA are compliant with NFRA Bylaws, as well.