The 2023 BGP Winter Membership Meeting will be held Sunday, February 5, 2023 from 4pm–5:30pm by Zoom.
Click here to RSVP and receive login information.
You can also request to place an item on the agenda for discussion by e-mailing [email protected].
The following items are on the agenda for this meeting:
- Financial update
- Review of Proposals to be Open for Voting
Proposal: Bylaws (Membership) - see below for text
Proposal: Steering Committee Election Process - see below for text
Proposal: Candidate Nomination Process - see below for text
- Potential Candidate Introduction
- Preview of 2023 Meetings, Social Events and Volunteer Opportunities (2023 Calendar)
- Announcements: Veterans for Peace boat tour, etc.
- Legislative Discussion with Delegate Sheila Ruth (Delegate Ruth is sponsoring two pieces of legislation relevant to the Baltimore City Green Party)
The Transit Equity Act, supported by Baltimore Transit Equity Coalition and endorsed by BGP
The Petition Modernization Act - this bill will allow for electronic signatures on ballot access petitions
1. Decision on Proposal: Bylaws (Membership):
The existing bylaws are here (Article III, Sections 3.1-3.3).
The proposed new bylaws are here:
ARTICLE III. Structure
1. The Baltimore City Green Party is an individual membership organization, open to residents of Baltimore City and to all residents of state legislative districts that exist in Baltimore City and a different county, who meet the criteria below and who subscribe to the 10 Key Values of the Green Party, as stated in section 2.1.
2. Any person who meets the residency above and the membership criteria below may become a Decision-Making Member of the BGP Local.
3.2 Declaration of Membership
Individuals may declare themselves as Decision-Making members by submitting their name to the party, using a form maintained by the Steering Committee. Decision-Making members must renew their status annually. Decision-Making members must meet the qualifications in Sections 3.1 and 3.3.
3.3 Party Affiliation
Decision-Making Members must affiliate with the Green Party.
A. In the presence of a Green Party ballot line, Decision-Making Members must register to vote as a member of the Green Party.
B. In the absence of a Green Party ballot line, Decision-Making Members must register as “Other: Green Party” or “Unaffiliated.”
C. Individuals who are unable to register to vote due to legal status may sign an internal BGP document that expresses their intention to be counted as BGP Decision-Making members. This includes persons who are not U.S. citizens, persons who are incarcerated, and persons under 18 years of age. Members must be at least 16 years old.
2. Decision on Proposal: Steering Committee Election Process
The existing election process is here.
The proposed new process is here:
The bylaws of the Baltimore City Green Party require a steering committee election every two years. In 2023 there will need to be an election for five to seven steering committee members. This proposal lays out a process, rules, and timeline for those elections. It is mostly modifications of the proposal adopted for the 2021 and 2022 steering committee elections.
As of a 2021 bylaws revision the members of the steering committee are elected at large with no specific roles determined at the time of election Section 3.7.C of the bylaws specify the composition of the steering committee:
The steering committee shall be made up of 5 to 7 members who are elected by the membership. Upon the first meeting of any newly elected steering committee, one member should be appointed to the role of “chair” and one member should be appointed to the role of “treasurer” as required by the state of Maryland. All other roles and tasks should be split among the steering committee and communicated to the membership.
The new Steering Committee takes office on December 9th. However, they may meet in conjunction with the outgoing SC in the interim. It is requested that the outgoing SC Members continue to meet with and help the new SC Members to transition into their roles until the January/February 2024 SC Meeting.
Proposal: The BGP shall elect its new Steering Committee members using the following process.
Eligibility to be a Candidate-To be nominated to the steering committee one must be a decision making member of the Baltimore City Green Party.
Making a Nomination -Nominations may be made by any decision-making member. They can be made at a meeting, on the Baltimore Green Party listserv or by mailing [email protected]. Members may self-nominate.
Nominations Time Period- Nominations open at the July 30th 2023 General membership meeting. Nominations close at the conclusion of the October 29th 2023 General Membership Meeting.
Voter Eligibility-To be eligible to vote, one must have fulfilled the membership requirements by 11:59 pm on 11/01/2023
Election Facilitator-This internal election shall be run by a facilitator to be appointed by the Membership at its General Meeting on 7/30/2023.
Candidate Forum- A candidates forum shall be scheduled no later than 11/10/2023. This forum will be a facilitated discussion between the membership and the SC Member nominees on the goals, vision, methods, etc. that each nominee has for the future of the Baltimore Green Party. Members may ask questions and provide comments and analysis.
Role and responsibilities of the facilitator.
The election facilitator appointed at the July membership meetings should meet the following criteria:
1)Is not running in the steering committee election.
2)Have a strong understanding of the voting methods used in the election.
3)Available throughout the election process
They will be responsible to:
- Determine all eligible voters on 11/01/2023 and provide the list to any SC nominee who requests it.
- Seek out a secure, online voting method, such as Opavote. Provide clear instructions to the members on how to request a ballot and vote by 11/7/2023
- Determine the results of the election and announce the results in a timely manner.
- Maintain a record of official decisions. Announce any official meeting, which shall be open to any BGP Member. Record official meetings.
- Resolve any issues brought forward by BGP members or the nominees.
- facilitate the candidate forum
The Election Process
Part 1: Each member votes Yea or Nay on each nominee by secret ballot. A nominee must receive 50% + 1 of the Yea/Nay total to proceed to Part 2. Part 1 voting shall be Open From 8:00 AM 11/12/2023 to 8:00 PM 11/19/2023
If there are 7 or fewer nominees remaining after Part 1, then Part 2 becomes unnecessary. The remaining nominees become the new S.C. Members.
Part 2. Utilizing an STV Scottish Method, the facilitator shall conduct a vote on the approved SC nominees. Decision-making Members will rank the approved nominees.
Part 2 voting if necessary will be Open From 8:00 AM 11/26/2023 to 8:00 PM 12/3/2023
Vote Tabulation. Votes must be tabulated according to the rules in #7. The facilitator should review the tabulation to ensure accuracy. Full opavote results should be shared with the decision making members.
Official Results. At the conclusion of the vote tabulation, the facilitator shall review the results and share them with the decision making membership
Disputes. Once the official results are announced by the facilitator a SC nominee has up to 48 hours to submit a dispute of the results. The dispute must be submitted in writing and explain the reason for the dispute, providing any and all evidence for the claims. Once a dispute is submitted, the facilitator and the Steering Committee will have 48 hours to respond. The Steering Committee will issue a finding that will be final.
Vacancies: If after this process, there remain vacancies on the Steering Committee, new nominations may be taken and voted upon beginning in January using the process above. If, after this process, there remain vacancies on the Steering Committee, the vacancies shall remain until one year later, when this process may be repeated.
3. Decision on Proposal: Candidate Nomination Process
The existing nomination process is here.
The proposed new process is here:
The Baltimore City Green Party (BGP) uses a party-run primary procedure to determine our nominees for partisan offices in Baltimore City, including:
- President of the City Council
- Member of the City Council
For Statewide and Federal Races please inquire with the Maryland Green Party
Candidate Eligibility: Candidates that have filed a State Board of Elections Declaration of Intent to run as a Green Party Candidate in Baltimore City will appear on the BGP primary ballot.
Dates of Primary: Primary voting will be open from 8:00 AM, July 8th, 2024 to 8:00 PM, July 14th, 2024.
Voter Eligibility All Green voters in a district in which there is a candidate will be able to request and cast a ballot. People disenfranchised from being able to register to vote, including people under 18 years old, people who are incarcerated, and people who are citizens of other countries, may request to become a member of the Baltimore City Green Party by emailing the BGP steering committee at [email protected] by July 1st 2024, and request a ballot and vote in the Baltimore City Green Party 2024 Primary Election.
Voter Engagement At least one forum will be held by the party between the filing deadline and the start of the election. The party will hold a debate for any contested elections and a forum for all candidates. The steering committee will also provide multiple opportunities for candidates to engage with Green voters during the election cycle
Ballot Design and Tabulation All balloting will be conducted using “Ranked Choice Voting”. That term is broad. The specific form of RCV will be determined by no later than June of 2023.
Vacancies If no candidate wins, or if there is no candidate for a position, a vacancy shall remain for that particular ballot line.
Disputes : Unless the membership decide otherwise, the steering committee shall resolve any disputes. If a member would like to propose a different dispute resolution process, they must do so at the April 2023 membership meeting and get it approved no later than June of 2023.
Information for Candidates
For the 2024 elections, all candidates seeking the nomination of the Baltimore City Green Party must:
1. File a Declaration of Intent with the Maryland State Board of Elections. State law requires each candidate that seeks to appear on the general election ballot to file a Declaration of Intent. The deadline is July 1, 2024. Candidates must have a Green Party voter affiliation at the time of the filing of the Declaration of Intent. More information about filing a declaration of intent can be found here.
2. Notify the Steering Committee of the Baltimore City Green Party. Candidates interested in running or wishing to notify the Baltimore Green Party of their intent to run can send an email to [email protected].
3. Not appear on the primary ballot for the Democrat or Republican Parties in 2024. State law prohibits candidates who did not win a primary from appearing on a general election ballot. It is also the policy of the Baltimore City Green Party that candidates are not eligible if they have appeared on the primary ballot of another party in the same general election cycle.
4. Obtain a Certificate of Nomination from the Maryland Green Party.
Per Maryland state law, the Maryland Green Party Coordinating Committee is the ultimate body that forwards the final Certificate of Nomination of candidates who will appear in the General Election to the Board of Elections, and under circumstances when evidence exists of egregious violations of Key Values by a prospective candidate, may choose not to forward a Certificate for that candidate.