THE REPUBLICAN MUNICIPAL COMMITTEE OF THE TOWNSHIP OF BRIDGEWATER
IN THE COUNTY OF SOMERSET AND THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY
NAME AND PURPOSE
Section 1: NAME
This organization shall be known as the Republican Municipal Committee of the Township of Bridgewater, hereinafter called the Municipal Committee.
Section 2: PURPOSE
The purpose of the Municipal Committee is to promote loyalty to the United States of America and to the State of New Jersey; to support their respective constitutions and to maintain the principles of the Republican Party; to encourage the candidacy of qualified Republicans to public office in order to insure sound legislation and competent administration; to screen, select, and endorse Municipal Candidates; participate in the screening, selection and endorsement of State and County candidates; to resist and expose political corruption; to promote honest and free electoral methods; and to encourage public attention to and discussion of civic problems and the conduct of Federal, State and Local governments.
AUTHORIZATION AND LIMITATIONS
Section 1: AUTHORITY
These By-Laws are in accordance with the provisions of Title 19, Elections, of the Revised Statutes of the State of New Jersey as amended and supplemented. This statute will hereinafter be referred to as Title 19. Municipal Committees in general and this Municipal Committee in particular are authorized and controlled by Title 19. Any conflict between these By-Laws and the provisions of Title 19 shall be resolved in favor of Title 19, unless superseded by Court order.
Section 2: FREEDOM TO ACT
The Municipal Committee shall be free to act in all instances to achieve its stated purpose except where restricted by law or statute. Activities are generally left to the discretion of the Municipal Committee.
Section 3: FUNDING AUTHORITY
The Municipal Committee may receive and expend funds for the furtherance and in aid of the candidacy of all the candidates of said party or of anyone or more of endorsed candidates approved by the Municipal Committee.
Section 4: RATIFICATION
These By-Laws must be ratified every two years by each Municipal Committee and will be effective for the term of that Municipal Committee.
Section 5: REVIEW OF BY-LAWS
These By-Laws shall be reviewed every presidential election year by an ad hoc Committee appointed by the Municipal Chairman elected during that year.
Section 1: MEMBERSHIP
The membership of the Municipal Committee shall consist of and be limited to residents of the Township of Bridgewater, County of Somerset in the State of New Jersey, who are members of the Somerset County Republican Committee, hereinafter called the County Committee.
Section 2: DEFINITION
The membership of the County Committee shall be determined by the results of the primary election and shall consist of one male member and one female member who shall be elected from each election district for a two (2) year term in even numbered years. The male receiving the highest number of votes among the male candidates and the female receiving the highest number of votes among the female candidates shall be declared elected. A certification of election by the Clerk of the Township of Bridgewater shall be construed as proof of election for the purpose of determining membership in the County and Municipal Committees. Except for the Municipal Chairman, the term of office for each Municipal Committee person shall be from the Monday following their election until the Monday following the primary election two (2) years hence. The term of office for the Municipal Chairman shall begin with election to Municipal Chairman at the organization meeting of the Municipal Committee and end with the election of a successor at the next even numbered year organization meeting of the Municipal Committee.
Section 3: RESIGNATION
A member may resign from the Municipal Committee and upon acceptance of said resignation by the Municipal Committee, a vacancy shall be deemed to exist. Resignation from either the Municipal or County Committee shall be construed as a resignation from both Committees.
Section 4: VACANCY
A vacancy shall be deemed to exist if the electorate in any election district fails to cast at least one (1) ballot for a male Republican resident or a female Republican resident of that election district, or if the electee declines the position, or in the event of death, or incapacitation, or by failure to satisfy the residency requirement. A vacancy on the Municipal Committee, howsoever caused, shall be filled for the duration of the unexpired term by a vote of the remaining members of the Municipal Committee. All candidates for vacancies shall be nominated at a meeting and voted on at the following meeting by the remaining members of the Municipal Committee.
Section 1: ORGANIZATIONAL MEETING
The organization meeting of the Municipal Committee shall be held on the first Monday following the even numbered year primary election for the general election at an hour and place to be designated in a notice given by the Chairman of the outgoing Municipal Committee to each member elect. At this meeting, the members of the new Municipal Committee shall elect some suitable person as Chairman to hold office for the term of the Municipal Committee or until his/her successor is chosen. The office of the Municipal Chairman is not restricted to members of the Municipal Committee.
Section 2: ELECTION OF OFFICERS
The Municipal Committee shall elect suitable persons to the following offices to assist the Chairman in administering the duties and policies of the Committee. This group of people shall constitute the Executive Committee and shall be elected to serve in the following positions:
1. First Vice-Chairman and County Advisory Board member
2. Second Vice-Chairman and Alternate Advisory Board member
The holding of these offices shall be restricted to members of the Municipal Committee, and these officers, with the Municipal Chairman, shall comprise the Executive Committee.
Section 3: VACANCY OF OFFICERS
In the event of an officer vacancy of the Municipal Committee, except for the Treasurer, said vacancy shall be filled by a majority vote of the next assembled Municipal Committee meeting.
Section 4: VACANCY OF TREASURER’S OFFICE
In the event of a vacancy in the office of Treasurer, it shall be immediately filled by a temporary appointment by the Municipal Chairman. It shall be permanently filled by a majority vote of the next assembled Municipal Committee meeting.
Section 5: VACANCY OF MUNICIPAL CHAIRMAN’S OFFICE
In the event of a vacancy in the office of Municipal Chairman, said vacancy shall be filled by a majority vote of the next assembled Municipal Committee meeting. It shall be the duty of the First Vice-Chairman, within twenty-one (21) days, to call a special meeting of the Municipal Committee to fill such vacancy for the balance of the term. This call for the special meeting is to be issued and the meeting held within thirty (30) days after such vacancy occurs. If for any cause the First Vice-Chairman fails to call and hold such special meeting, then the Second Vice-Chairman shall issue the call within fifteen (15) days thereafter. The Chairman of the Somerset County Republican Organization shall be notified in case of any dispute arising between members of the Municipal Committee which cannot be settled by said membership and prevents a new Municipal Chairman from being elected.
DUTIES OF OFFICERS
Section 1: MUNICIPAL CHAIRMAN
The Municipal Chairman shall:
1. Preside at all meetings of the Municipal Committee.
2. Perform all duties required of the office by law, by these By-Laws and by the County
3. Administer the policies of and be spokesman for the Municipal Committee. The Chairman shall
generally act in accordance with the advice and consent of the Municipal Committee, but may
act independently in those matters requiring discretion or urgency. Such actions shall always
be subject to the approval of the Municipal Committee, and it shall be the Chairman’s duty to call
a special meeting in all instances where a policy decision so dictates.
4. Authorize the expenditure of all funds subject to the approval of the Executive Committee and
the Municipal Committee.
5. Appoint an independent auditor.
6. Appoint other ad-hoc positions as deemed appropriate by the Executive Committee.
Section 2: FIRST VICE-CHAIRMAN
The First Vice-Chairman shall:
1. Be of the opposite gender of the Municipal Chairman.
2. Be a member of the Advisory Board of the County Committee.
3. Assumes duties of the Chairman in the Chairman’s absence.
4. May assume the responsibilities of the Secretary in the event of a vacancy in that position.
Section 3: SECOND VICE-CHAIRMAN
The Second Vice-Chairman shall:
1. Be of the same gender as the Municipal Chairman.
1. Be the alternate Advisory Board Member of the County Committee.
2. Assume the duties of the Chairman in the absence of the Chairman and the First Vice-Chairman.
Section 4: SECRETARY
The Secretary shall:
1. Maintain an accurate record of the proceedings of each regular and special meeting
of the Republican Municipal Committee and present, for approval by the members
of the Republican Municipal Committee, written minutes of each meeting at the succeeding
2. Maintain attendance records of all meetings.
3. Prepare correspondence as authorized by the Republican Municipal Committee and
maintain a permanent file of all communications.
4. Provide a copy of the By-Laws to each new Committee Member.
Section 5: TREASURER
The Treasurer shall:
1. Be in charge of all funds and revenues.
2. Maintain accounting ledgers for all income/receipts and expenditures and provide a balance
sheet and profit and loss reports, in writing, to the Executive Committee quarterly.
3. Maintain a bank depository for all funds.
4. Issue checks signed by one (1) of the five (5) officers of the Municipal Committee.
5. Pay all bills authorized by the Municipal Chairman.
6. Prepare all financial reports required by and and all government agencies, Republican
Party committees, Municipal Committee By-Laws, and at the request of the Municipal Chairman.
7. Have all finances of the Municipal Committee available for audit. An audit shall be performed
for the two (2) year term of the Executive Committee prior to June 1 in the even-numbered year
in which the County Committee members are elected. Special audits shall be made at the
request of the Municipal Chairman at any time.
8. Prepare an income and expenditure report for the two (2) year term of the Executive Committee
together with starting and ending fund balances, to be presented at the Municipal
Committee organizational meeting along with the auditor’s report.
9. The Treasurer shall provide original monthly bank statements to the Chairman.
Section 6: EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
The Executive Committee shall:
1. Assist the Municipal Chairman in developing strategies to implement Municipal Committee
policies and the establishment of ad hoc committees.
2. Act as a sounding board for the Municipal Chairman before he presents proposed policies
to the Municipal Committee.
3. Recommend modification to policies.
4. Make recommendations to the Municipal Committee as to the expenditure of Committee funds.
5. Establish procedures for the screening, selection, and endorsement of Municipal Candidates.
MEETINGS AND VOTING
Section 1: ADDITIONAL MEETINGS
In addition to the annual Municipal Committee organization meeting, additional meetings shall be called from time to time at the discretion of the Municipal Chairman. It shall be the duty of the Municipal Chairman to hold meetings with the Committee members at least four (4) times each year.
Section 2: SPECIAL MEETINGS
Special meetings may be requested by a petition to the Municipal Chairman signed by fifteen percent (15%) or more of the members of the Municipal Committee. The Municipal Chairman shall call a special meeting of the Municipal Committee within 15 days after receipt of said petition. The meeting notice shall be in writing and shall be postmarked or e-mailed no fewer than fourteen (14) days prior to said meeting. In the event that a Committee member’s e-mail is undeliverable, the Municipal Chairman will notify said Committee member in writing and said notification shall be postmarked no fewer than seven (7) days prior to said meeting. The agenda of special meetings shall be included in the meeting notice.
Section 3: QUORUM
A quorum for all meetings is defined as the presence of Municipal Committee members from fifty percent 50% or more of the election districts in the Township of Bridgewater, or by forty percent (40%) of the membership of the Committee. Where proper notice of the organization meeting is given, a quorum shall exist within thirty (30) minutes after the announced starting time of said meeting and shall continue to exist until the meeting is adjourned. All elections, resolutions, questions and other matters to come before the Committee shall be decided by a majority vote of those present, unless stated otherwise herein.
Section 4: ROBERT’S RULES OF ORDER:
All meetings shall be conducted in accordance with the latest edition of Robert’s Rules of Order.
DUTIES OF MEMBERS OF THE MUNICIPAL COMMITTEE
Section 1: DUTIES OF MEMBERS
It shall be the duty of the members of the Municipal Committee to perform those functions which are defined from time to time by the Municipal Chairman to achieve the stated purpose of the Committee.
Section 2: CHALLENGER DUTIES
It shall be the duty and privilege of each member of the Municipal Committee to recommend to each Republican candidate in the general election, the name of one legal voter and resident of Somerset County to serve as a challenger and poll watcher in the name of and for the protection of that candidate during the time of election. These recommendations shall be forwarded to the Municipal Chairman at least twenty one (21) days prior to the general election. The final choice of challengers, however, rests with the candidate.
Section 3: COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTION MEMBERSHIP
It shall be the duty and privilege of each member of the Municipal Committee to recommend to the Somerset County Board of Elections the name of one legal voter and a resident of the Township of Bridgewater, who has voted for three (3) successive years as a Republican, to serve as a member of the district Board of Elections. These recommendations shall be forwarded to the Municipal Chairman seven (7) days prior to the date required for their presentation to the Somerset County Board of Elections. The final choice of district board members, however, rests with the County Board of Elections.
Section 4: DUTIES OF MEMBERS
It shall be the duty and privilege of each member of the Municipal Committee to participate in the screening, selection, and endorsement of Municipal Candidates along with currently elected Bridgewater Republican officials and the candidates. In order to vote in the Bridgewater Republican Municipal Committee’s candidate screening process, each Committee member shall attend at least one half, fifty percent (50%), of the required meetings held by the Municipal Chairman, in the year prior to the screening meeting and be a Committee member of record as of Election Day of the prior year. A meeting is defined as any Bridgewater Republican Municipal Committee meeting or Somerset County Republican Organization meeting to which attendance of the entire Municipal Committee is requested.
Section 5: COUNTY COMMITTEE DUTY OF MEMBERS
In order to vote in the Somerset County Republican Organization’s candidate screening process, each Committee member shall attend at least one half, fifty percent (50%), of the required meetings held by the Municipal Chairman, in the year prior to the screening meeting and be a Committee member of record as of Election Day of the prior year. A meeting is defined as any Bridgewater Republican Municipal Committee meeting or Somerset County Republican Organization meeting to which attendance of the entire Municipal Committee is requested. To determine eligibility to participate, up to two attendance credits will be awarded for volunteer activity during the preceding year. Volunteer activity will be comprised of 90 consecutive minutes of assistance supporting Bridgewater and/or Somerset County Republican candidates for tasks including but not limited to phone calls, literature drop, lawn sign distribution and fundraising activity. Not more than one attendance credit can be accrued in a single day. The Municipal Chair will retain records of the organization's volunteer activity. Committee members must notify the Municipal Chair of any additional qualifying participation in writing or by e-mail at least ten days prior to the screening in question. Judgment on the award of attendance credits will be made by a majority vote of the Executive Committee.
Section 6: NON-COMMITTEE MEMBERS VOTING PRIVILEGES
In addition, all current Republican officials holding elective office, who are currently domiciled in Bridgewater and who have attended at least half of the Municipal Committee meetings in the prior year, shall be entitled to participate in the screening, selection and endorsement of Municipal candidates, and be entitled to vote. Qualified elected offices are: (a) Governor; (b) U.S. Senator; (c) U.S. Representative; (d) N.J. State Senator; (e) N.J. State Assembly person; (f) Somerset County Freeholder; (g) Somerset County Constitutional Officers (Sheriff, County Clerk and Surrogate); (h) Bridgewater Mayor; and (i) Bridgewater Council Member. All individuals have one vote.
Section 1: Amendments to these By-Laws shall be by approval of a two third (2/3) majority of members present at either the annual organization meeting or at any meeting where proper notice is given, called for the purpose of amending these By-Laws. When a meeting is called to amend these By-Laws, the proposed amendment shall be stated in the meeting notice which shall be postmarked or e-mailed not less than fourteen (14) days prior to the meeting date. In the event that a Committee member’s e-mail is undeliverable, the Municipal Chairman will notify said Committee member in writing and said notification shall be postmarked no fewer than seven (7) days prior to said meeting.
REMOVAL OF OFFICERS
Section 1: Lack of Confidence Proceedings may be instituted against any or all officers of the Municipal Committee by a written petition of twenty five percent (25%) or more of the members of said Committee. In the
event of such action, a special meeting in accordance with the procedure described in Article VI, Section 2, shall be called by the Chairman. A full discussion of all reasons for the alleged lack of confidence shall ensue. If, after proper notice and hearing, two thirds (2/3) of the members present shall vote against the accused officer(s) his/her resignation(s) shall be requested. If no such resignation is forthcoming within thirty (30) days, the office(s) shall be deemed vacant and shall remain vacant until a successor is elected by the Municipal committee in accordance with Article IV, Section 3.
Adopted, September 28, 1976
Amended, April 1, 1992, September 14, 1993, March 12, 2013, May 1, 2013, and January 18, 2017
Beth Powers, Chairman
Michael Kirsh, First Vice-Chair