Appendix D - Elections Code
Section 1. General provisions.
- No funds or other resources of the Federation or of any subordinate body, and no funds or resources of any employer, shall be used to support the candidacy of any member for any elective office within the Federation or any subordinate body.
- No publication sponsored by or supported by the Federation or any subordinate body shall endorse or support any candidate for elective office within the Federation or any subordinate body.
- Any nominee or announced candidate for elective office shall have the right once prior to the election to have mailed, through the union office but at private expense, campaign literature. In a local union election, such literature may be mailed to each member in good standing. In an International Union or council election, such literature may be mailed to each affiliated subordinate body and/or to each member in good standing.
- No member whose eligibility for membership is based upon employment in a position for which another organization is the exclusive representative with regard to wages, hours, or other terms and conditions of employment shall be eligible to seek or hold office at any level of the union; provided, that any member now serving a term of office shall not be barred by this Section from completing the remainder of such term of office.
Section 2. Election of subordinate body officers.
- To be eligible for election, a nominee must be a member in good standing of the local union in which the nominee seeks office or of a local affiliated with the council in which the nominee seeks office, and must meet such other conditions as are stipulated in the constitution of the subordinate body.
- An Election Committee shall be established and shall have general responsibility for the conduct of the election in accordance with this Constitution and the constitution of the subordinate body. Any challenge concerning the eligibility of any nominee shall be referred to the Election Committee for decision and the decision shall be reported to the subordinate body prior to the election. The Election Committee shall also report, as expeditiously as possible, the results of the balloting, together with recommendations regarding any protests which have been lodged regarding the conduct of the election. No member of the Election Committee may be a candidate for office.
- The terms of office for officers of subordinate bodies shall be set forth in the constitution of each subordinate body, but may not exceed three years in the case of local union officers or four years in the case of council officers.
- Not less than fifteen days prior to the holding of nominations for local union officers, a notice of the nominations and elections shall be mailed to each member at the member’s last known home address. Notice of nominations and elections for council officers shall be sent to each affiliated local not less than fifty days prior to the election or notice may be given as required by the council’s approved constitution.
- Nominations may be made at a regular or special meeting by a local union member or by a council delegate. Nominations may also be made by a nominating committee, unless prohibited by the constitution of the subordinate body. Those nominated shall be afforded the opportunity to decline, and the name of any nominee who declines shall not appear on the ballot. Write-in votes shall not be valid for any purpose.
- In any case where there is only one nominee for office, such nominee shall be declared elected. In all other cases, election shall be by secret ballot. All local union members or council delegates shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity to vote.
- In all cases in which election of officers is occurring simultaneously for both at-large and district seats, distinct ballots shall be issued, separating the at-large from the district contests. Ballots from at-large contests shall be indistinguishable as to district or constituency, and such ballots shall be cast in such a manner that they cannot be identified as coming from a particular district or constituency.
- Local union elections may be conducted at the same meeting as nominations or at the following meeting or by referendum, as provided in the local union constitution. Council elections shall be held in accordance with the constitution of the council.
- Any candidate whose name is to appear on the ballot shall have the right to have present an official observer of the candidate’s own choosing, who must be a member of the Federation, in all places where ballots bearing the candidate’s name are to be cast or counted.
- Upon completion of the voting, the ballots shall be tabulated and the candidate for each office receiving a majority of the votes cast for that office shall be declared elected. Any remaining unfilled offices shall be filled through a run-off election in which there shall be a ballot bearing two names for each office to be filled, such names being those nominees who received the greatest number of votes in the first balloting and the candidates receiving the highest number of votes shall be declared elected. Those elected shall be installed in office immediately but in no event later than 10 days after the tabulation of the election ballots, and regardless of any election related protests that are filed. Upon installation of the new officers, the names, addresses and terms of office of the newly elected officers shall be submitted to the International Secretary-Treasurer so that credential cards may be issued in accordance with the provisions of Article IX, Sections 18 and 23, of this Constitution. The preelection incumbents shall remain in office until new officers are installed. The Election Committee will inform the subordinate body of the results of the tabulation of ballots.
- Vacancies in office shall be filled in accordance with provisions of the constitution of the subordinate body. If no constitutional provision exists, vacancies shall be filled by vote of the executive board of the subordinate body.
- All election records, including ballots, shall be retained by the subordinate body for at least one year after the election.
Section 3. Election of convention delegates.
- Local unions shall elect council delegates in the manner prescribed for the election of local union officers, subject to the provisions of paragraph C, below.
- Locals and councils shall elect delegates to conventions of the International Union in the manner prescribed for the election of local and council officers, subject to the provisions of paragraph C, below, and of Article IV of this Constitution.
- The election by local unions of council delegates and of delegates to conventions of the International Union shall not require a majority of the votes cast unless such requirement is specifically contained in the local union constitution.
Section 4. Challenges and protests.
- Any member of a local union or any council delegate may challenge the eligibility of any nominee by filing such challenge with the Election Committee prior to the holding of the election. The Election Committee shall make a determination regarding the challenge, and shall report its ruling to the subordinate body. The subordinate body shall either accept or reject the ruling of the Election Committee prior to the election.
- Any protest concerning the conduct of the election may be lodged at the meeting at which the election is conducted or by filing such protest in writing with the subordinate body or the Election Committee within ten days following the election. All interested parties shall be afforded an opportunity to be heard. The membership of the subordinate body shall either accept or reject the recommended decision of the Election Committee not later than thirty days after the filing of the protest.
- If the subordinate body determines that there were violations which may have affected the outcome of the election, it may order such election or any part thereof set aside, and a new election held. Any officers who have been installed prior to such determination shall remain in office pending the outcome of any new election or of a future appeal.
- Any protestant or nominee adversely affected by a decision on a challenge or a protest may file a written appeal with the Judicial Panel within ten days of the subordinate body’s decision, or, if no decision has been rendered, within forty days after filing the original protest with the subordinate body. Upon receipt of such an appeal, the Chairperson of the Judicial Panel shall designate one or more members of the Judicial Panel to conduct an investigation, affording all interested parties an opportunity to be heard, and such member or members shall issue a decision within forty days after the filing of the protest. If the investigation shows that there were violations which may have affected the outcome of the election, the election or any part thereof may be set aside and a new election held. In such circumstances, the new election may be conducted under the supervision of a representative designated by the Panel member or members who conducted the investigation.
- Decisions made by a Panel member or members may be appealed to the full Judicial Panel by filing written notice of such appeal within ten days after the decision is issued. Should a decision not be issued within the time limit set forth above, an appeal to the full Judicial Panel may be filed within ten days after the expiration of such time limit. The Judicial Panel shall hear and decide such appeal at its next meeting. The Judicial Panel shall provide an opportunity for all interested parties to be heard, and shall consider all other information obtained in the investigation conducted by a member or members of the Judicial Panel.
- Decisions of the Judicial Panel under this section may be appealed to the International Convention. Notice of such appeal shall be filed in writing with the International Secretary-Treasurer within thirty days after the decision of the Judicial Panel. Pending the decision of the Convention, the decision of the Judicial Panel will be in effect.
- No subordinate body funds shall be used to institute legal action outside the union to challenge election rulings.
- Challenges and protests regarding the election of council delegates shall be handled in the manner prescribed for challenges and protests regarding the election of officers of subordinate bodies.
Section 5. Challenges and protests regarding election of delegates to International Union Conventions.
- A challenge or protest regarding the election of delegates to a convention of the International Union must be filed with and decided by a subordinate body by or on the date of the meeting at which the report of the Elections Committee is voted on. A written appeal from the decision of the subordinate body may be filed with the Judicial Panel not later than the fifth day following the subordinate body’s action on the challenge or protest; provided that the Judicial Panel shall not have jurisdiction to hear appeals filed within twenty (20) days of the opening day of the Convention. The Chairperson of the Judicial Panel shall designate one or more members of the Judicial Panel to conduct an investigation and decide the appeal in the manner provided in Section 4(D) as expeditiously as possible. An appeal from the decision may be made in the manner provided in Section 4(E).
- If the right of a delegate from any subordinate body to be seated at the Convention is challenged, the Credentials Committee shall review the report and decisions, if any, of any prior appeals before making a decision concerning the validity of the delegate’s credential.
Section 6. The provisions of this Elections Code shall conform with applicable law.