Bylaw Amendment – Specific Language

Amendment to Article X
Proposed by Member Mark A. Hackett

The Member Bill of Rights guarantees Members the right to propose Bylaw changes. In 2016 the Cobb EMC Board of Directors raised the number of signatures required for a Member proposal from 35 to 300, and raised the number of Member votes to approve the proposal from a simple majority (50% +1) to a 2/3 super majority.

Cobb EMC’s related 10,000 Member survey only received about 700 responses. Survey answers were limited to: leaving the number of signatures at 35, choosing selections ranging from 425 to 2000, or providing their own value which significantly biased the survey results. For example, if 70% of respondents selected 35 signatures with the remaining 30% divided between the other choices, the average comes out to 400 signatures. As Mark Twain once said, “there’s lies, damn lies, and statisitics.” The survey did not address 2/3 majority voting at all.

This proposed amendment restores the Member right to propose Bylaw changes to that of September 2015 and, consistent with the rest of the Bill of Rights, prohibits its amendment without a Member vote. Cobb EMC Forum recomends a YES” vote for this amendment to restore Member rights that were eroded by Board amendment earlier this year. For a full discussion of the need for this Bylaw Amendment click here.

Specific changes

Change the first sentence in Article X by deleting the second reference to 2/3 as follows:

“These Bylaws may be amended by either: (i) the affirmative vote of a 2/3 majority of the Directors present and voting at the second (2nd) of two (2) consecutive director meetings at which the amendment is addressed, or (ii) by the affirmative vote of a 2/3 majority of  the Members submitting a ballot…”

Change section X-10.01.(a)(1) replacing Three Hundred (300) with thirty-five (35) as follows:

“(a) … a Bylaw amendment sponsored or proposed by Members must be:

(1) sponsored and accompanied by a dated petition containing the printed names, addresses and original dated signatures of at least  Three Hundred (300) thirty-five (35) Members entitled to vote on the Bylaw amendment…”

Add the following language to the end of Article X:

“This Bylaw Article may not be amended by the Board of Directors.”