TOWNS COUNTY, Ga – Board of Elections announced that the August 11 runoff elections will take place in the same polling location as the General Primary.
After speaking with the Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office, Board of Elections Chairman Janet Olivia and Office Supervisor Rachel Edwards stated that the runoff election must “be consistent” with the primary. In other words, the decision to only open one polling station will still be in effect for the runoff.
COVID-19 forced the Board of Elections to close four of the five polling stations in Towns County. The decision took into account the safety of residents and poll workers as well as liability concerns.
“We had trained 30 [poll workers], but when we get got a reply back, we had less than 12 that were interested in working,” Olivia explained. “Also, the individuals in control of the polling places were concerned about the issue of using the polling place locations because of the liability and responsibility.”
If the government owns the polling location, then it takes on the responsibility of sanitizing the area to combat the spread of COVID-19. EMS Director Brandon Walls and his team assisted in ensuring the cleanliness of the Board of Elections and Civic Center building.
However, other polling locations, such as the lodge and church, private citizens would be responsible for cleaning and separating large crowds of people.
The elections and civic center building was only government facility available for the General Primary and just enough poll workers to staff it.
4,754 Towns residents voted during the June 9 General Primary with 2,732 absentee votes, and 1,166 early votes. Around 10,500 people are registered to vote in Towns County.
Early voting for the runoff will begin on July 20. Absentee ballots for the runoff must be requested. The Secretary of State won’t mass mail absentee applications for the August 11 election.
Races appearing on the August 11 runoff will be Towns County Sheriff between Kenneth “Ode” Henderson (R) and Daren “Bear” Osborn (R), State Senator District 50 between Stacy Hall (R) and Bo Hatchett (R), Congressional Ninth District on the Republican Ticket Matt Gurtler and Andrew Clyde, and Ninth District on the Democrat Ticket Devin Pandy and Brooke Siskin.
Due to J.C. Berrong’s untimely passing, the Towns County Republican Party can run another candidate in his place and one individual has qualified. Michael Anderson of Scataway will appear on the ballot for Tax Commissioner in November. Bruce Rogers (D-I) will also be on the ballot.
The Board of Elections applied for several grants to reimburse the expenses associated with the new voting machines as well.
“These ladies do a great job. They put in a tremendous amount of hours down there and I’m very thankful to have them. As commissioner, I don’t know what I would do without them. They are very dedicated and do a good job, added Sole Commissioner Cliff Bradshaw.
NORTH GEORGIA – Now that the General Primary is over, several candidates are facing runoff elections across North Georgia.
The runoff is scheduled for Tuesday, August 11 and only those who voted in the General Primary may vote in it. Early in-person voting will begin on July 20, 2019.
For a breakdown of the runoff races, see below.
STATE & FEDERAL
U.S. House of Representatives District 9
U.S. House of Representatives District 14
Georgia State House Representative District 9
Georgia State Senate District 50
Fannin – Commission Chairman
Gilmer – Magistrate Judge
Reagan Griggs Pritchett
Pickens – Tax Commissioner
Pickens – Board of Education Post One
White – Probate Judge
Towns – Sheriff
Kenneth “Ode” Henderson
Daren “Bear” Osborn
Murray – Sheriff
Read General Primary state results here.
To review the individual county race returns, please go to the individual websites.
The election for Kelly Loeffler’s Senate Seat won’t appear on the ballot until Nov 3.
TOWNS COUNTY, Ga – The polls have closed for the June 9 General Primary. To review the unofficial election returns for your local races, see below. Please remember all the results are unofficial until certified by the Secretary of State.
Presumptive Winner: Cliff Bradshaw (Incumbent)
Presumptive Winner: Bruce Rogers (Incumbent)
Sheriff – Runoff
Jim Couch – 19.47%
Linda Curtis – 5.45%
Runoff Candidate: Kenneth “Ode” Henderson – 27.78%
Lisa Joseph – 3.49%
Runoff Candidate: Daren Osborn – 43.82%
Clerk of Superior Court
Presumptive Winner: Cecil Dye (Republican)
Presumptive Winner: Cecil Dye (Incumbent)
Board of Education Post 1 – Macedonia
Presumptive Winner: Brandon Grimsley
Board of Education Post 4 – At Large
Presumptive Winner: Stephanie McConnell
Board of Education Post 5 – At Large
Stephen Green -43.76%
Presumptive Winner: Caroleen Woods – 56.24%
Presumptive Winner: Tamela Cooper – 53.29%
Harold Copeland (Incumbent) – 46.71%
Judge of Superior Court Enotah Circuit
Presumptive Winner: Joy R. Parks (Incumbent)
SPLOST – Passed
Freemont Tax – Passed
City of Hiawassee Fluoride Referendum – No – 57.01%
U.S. Representative District Nine
Michael Boggus – 2.11%
Paul Broun – 8.41%
Andrew Clyde – 16.77%
Matt Gurtler – 40.26%
Maria Strickland – 3.45%
Kevin Tanner – 5.84%
Ethan Underwood – 5.65%
Kellie Weeks – 2.60%
John Wilkinson – 14.91%
Devin Pandy – 33.22%
Brooke Siskin – 20.38%
Dan Wilson – 46.40%
State Senate District 50
Andy Garrison – 13.20%
Dan Gasaway – 4.11%
Stacy Hall – 31.59%
Bo Hatchett – 21.03%
Tricia Lynne Hise – 20.86%
Lee Moore – 9.21%
Dee Daley – 100%
State House District 8
Stan Gunter – 65.55%
Steve Townsend – 34.45%
Dave Cooper – 100%
To see the state election returns, click here.
Run-off elections will be held on August 11 if needed. The General Election is scheduled for November 3 as well as the jungle primary for Senator Kelly Loeffler’s seat.
ELLIJAY, Ga – With the Georgia Primary finally set for June 9, the nine candidates for U.S. House of Representatives District Nine seat met for a Zoom debate.
The nine Republican candidates are State House District 8 Rep. Matt Gurtler, District 50 State Senator John Wilkinson, State House District Rep. 9 Kevin Tanner, property rights attorney Ethan Underwood, small business owner Kellie Weeks, small business owner Andrew Clyde, former law enforcement officer Maria Strickland, physician Paul Broun, and Constitutionalist Michael Boggus.
All candidates voiced their support for the big issues like Second Amendment Rights, supporting President Trump, limited government, and fiscal conservatism. However, Gurtler took the opportunity to call out fellow Georgia General Assembly members for their yearly budget votes.
“As one of the three elected officials in the State House and the Senate, I think it’s funny when I hear my opponents Tanner and Wilkinson say that they’re fiscally conservative, yet they vote for the budgets, which add a billion to 1.5 billion dollars every year to Georgians. I oppose those budgets every year and we also take one to one federal money, which adds to the national debt that’s something that I’ve been fighting for more transparency with HB4,” expounded Gurtler.
Wilkinson responded, “I’m proud of the state we live in. I’m proud to serve on the appropriations committee. I’m proud that I’ve been able to help the counties of Northeast Georgia during my service at the legislature I think that speaks for itself. When you have a triple-A bond rating, a balanced budget, and you’re the number one place in the nation to do business and a million more citizens than you did ten years ago, something must be going right and I’m proud to be part of that.
“I’m a Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, anti-federalist type politician. They believed in a limited role of the federal government. The states under the 10th amendment have certain responsibilities – transportation, education infrastructure, [and] other things are part of the [state’s] responsibility. I’m proud we have a balanced budget in Georgia, a triple-A bond rating, one of the few states in the country that does. I’m proud that Gov. Kemp continues to put forth a well-balanced, conservative budget. I’ve been proud to support that along with most every Republican in the House. We did have a few Democrats and one member of the panel who did vote against the budget.”
Gurtler called out their responses as “fake talking points” by Republicans, and he’s the only proven conservative in the race.
COVID-19 and State Bailouts
On the topic of COVID-19, everyone admitted the virus is real, but it’s time to safely get the country back to work.
“Certainly, the coronavirus is a health issue, not a government issue. In my opinion, Dr. Fauci, Dr. Birx, and even Dr. Toomey in Georgia, they’re swamp creatures, and they have been able to accomplish what Comey, Clapper, Brennan, Strzok, and all those other people tried to do to take this president down, stated Broun. “We need to get this economy going. We need to let people be responsible for their own actions.”
“I would never diminish the fact that people are afraid,” said Tanner. “I have been surprised how quickly people are willing to give up their liberties for safety. I think that is a concern. I think we have small government overreach in many areas. I have been amazed at how well businesses have stepped up on their own.”
Many also denounced the first $2.2 trillion bill for government overreach and unnecessary spending. Gurtler said that “75 percent of the bill had nothing to do with the coronavirus.”
Wilkinson championed moving manufacturing back to the U.S. and making China accountable for some of the debt incurred by COVID-19.
Most were against a states bailout by the federal government, except Strickland.
She said, “I would think a limited amount of bailout would be appropriate to some of the states only because this a unique situation that no one expected to be getting into. Granted, the states some of them like New York, New Jersey that spent their money on illegal immigrants and all this other kind of thing. They didn’t prepare for the future. We do need to bailout some of them, but only a limited amount.”
“I think it’s fine if the states get a stimulus as long as it goes to people and the small businesses,” stated Boggus. “Small businesses [are] the backbone of this country. This stimulus should be pork-free unlike the last one and there shouldn’t be [any] ice cream bought by Nancy Pelosi.”
Underwood brought up the Federal Emergency Relief Act, which is available to all states to purchase medical equipment and relief.
“Are the states not going to tax us? Because it seems like every level of government thinks their money comes from somebody different, and it’s all coming from us. We all the taxpayers here,” explained Weeks. “We’re all just getting billed again and again and again.”
“Several states were in trouble before this started because of irresponsible decisions at the state level. Bailouts don’t work. Bailout bills are always filled with pork and actually reward bad decisions,” heralded Clyde. “We have a huge national debt and it would be irresponsible to add more to it. We need to get the people back to work.”
Hear detailed answers from all the candidates about the next COVID-19 package, contact tracing overreach, and defunding the World Health Organization, watch the debate here.
Turning to the ongoing saga of affordable healthcare for Americans, all candidates agreed that Obamacare should be repealed.
Underwood championed a private healthcare system that travels with people. It would no longer be tied to employers, which prevents many individuals in the gig-economy from accessing reasonably priced and effective healthcare plans. He added that preexisting conditions must be factored in when creating a new healthcare platform.
“Stand firm against socialized medicine,” said Gurtler. When Republicans controlled the House and Senate, they still couldn’t repeal Obamacare.
“People in our rural areas deserve good healthcare and the best way to do that is to get the federal government completely out of it,” Wilkinson stated.
Broun, who previously served in Congress and worked as a physician, presented his bill that would put doctors and nurses in charge of medical decisions. “All healthcare goods and services cheaper for everybody.”
“The only solution to health care is a free-market solution,” said Tanner. “The bigger underlying problem is the pharmaceutical companies have their hand in almost every Congressional race and Congressman in Washington. They’re controlling the drug prices. Gov. Kemp appointed me to chair the mental health reform commission last year. One of the biggest challenges we faced was the pharmaceutical companies and their desire not to have changes in our healthcare system.
To hear the candidates’ comments about President Trump, immigration, China, sanctuary cities, staying in touch with voters, and closing statements, check out the debate.
HIAWASSEE, Ga.- Towns County residents will be given an option on the General Primary ballot, May 19, regarding the addition of fluoride to the City of Hiawassee water supply. A petition opposing the addition of fluoride was circulated in the community in 2019, garnering enough signatures to place the decision on the ballot for both Hiawassee and Towns County consumers. According to Hiawassee City Hall, 35 citizens signed the circulated petition, enough to advance the referendum.
The City of Hiawassee received notice in early 2019 from the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) that the mineral has not been an additive in the water supply for decades.
“During the routine inspection, it was discovered that the Hiawassee Water System did not add fluoride as a treatment process,” EPD Environmental Compliance Specialist Alisha Bailey wrote in an email obtained by FYN. “According to the current ORC, Mr. Randall Thomas, Hiawassee WTP has not treated the water with fluoride in over 20 years. All potable water sources must be fluoridated, according to the Rules for Safe Drinking Water 391-3-5-.16 Fluoridation. Amended. In certain cases, some water systems had received a waiver from the state or there was a vote within the board of the water system as to not add fluoride to the drinking water.”
Hiawassee Mayor Liz Ordiales responded, informing EPD that a vote to reject local fluoridation had taken place 36 years prior. Ordiales included a copy of city council minutes from 1983 as evidence.
FYN reported public opposition to fluoridation after Fluoride Action Network published FYN’s initial report on the city’s intent. According to its mission statement, “Fluoride Action Network seeks to broaden awareness among citizens, scientists, and policymakers on the toxicity of fluoride compounds. FAN provides comprehensive and up-to-date information and remains vigilant in monitoring government agency actions that impact the public’s exposure to fluoride.”
Fluoride is the ionic form of fluorine, the thirteenth most abundant element in the earth’s crust. It is released into the environment naturally in both water and air. Its concentration in water is variable. Water is the major dietary source of fluoride. The variability in water content explains much of the variability in total fluoride intake. Other important sources of fluoride are tea, seafood that contains edible bones or shells, medicinal supplements, and fluoridated toothpaste. Fluoride compounds are also produced by some industrial processes that use the mineral apatite, a mixture of calcium phosphate compounds. Dietary fluoride is absorbed rapidly in the stomach and small intestine. One-quarter to one-third of the absorbed fluoride is taken up into calcified tissues, whereas the rest is lost in the urine. In bone and teeth, fluoride can displace hydroxyl ions from hydroxyapatite to produce fluorapatite or fluorohydroxyapatite. About 99% of total body fluoride is contained in bones and teeth, and the amount steadily increases during life. The recommended intake for fluoride is expressed as an adequate intake rather than recommended dietary allowance, because of the limited data available to determine the population needs.
The adequate intake for fluoride is 0.7 mg daily for toddlers, rising to 3 mg daily for adult women and 4 mg daily for adult men. It remains unclear whether fluoride is truly essential, although fluoride may have some beneficial effects. Once taken up into bone, fluoride appears to increase osteoblast activity and bone density, especially in the lumbar spine. Fluoride has been suggested as a therapy for osteoporosis since the 1960s, but despite producing denser bone, fracture risk is not reduced. Indeed, there is some evidence that nonvertebral fractures may be increased. The only known association with low fluoride intake is the risk of dental caries, acting through both pre-eruptive and post-eruptive mechanisms. The American Dental Association strongly supports fluoridation of community drinking water supplies; however, strong contradictory opinions also are held.
Starting in 1962, the United States Public Health Service recommended that public water supplies contain between 0.7 and 1.2 milligrams of fluoride per liter (mg/L) of drinking water to help prevent tooth decay.
This recommendation was updated in 2015 to a fluoride level of 0.7 mg/L, The change was made in part to account for the fact that people now get more fluoride from other sources than in the past. Natural drinking water sources in the US have an average fluoride level of about 0.2 mg/L, although in some areas it can be much higher.
HIAWASSEE, Ga.- As qualifying quickly approaches, five Towns County sheriff candidates and two coroner candidates are scheduled to briefly address the Towns County Republican Party on Thursday, Feb. 27. The monthly GOP meeting, which typically meets on the third Thursday of each month, was rescheduled due to winter weather conditions.
House Representative and the U.S. Congressional candidate Matt Gurtler was invited to speak at the canceled session, and according to the GOP, cannot attend on the alternate date due to a scheduling conflict.
In addition to hearing from the county candidates, Towns County Republican Chair Betsy Young informed FYN that the meeting will feature opening exercises by local students, along with a discussion on the Precinct Caucus and County Convention.
Towns County sheriff candidates, listed in the order of their announcement to seek office, are as follow:
- Daren “Bear’ Osborn
- Kenneth “Ode” Henderson
- Linda J. Curtis
- Jim Couch
- Lisa Joseph
Towns County coroner candidates are:
- Harold Copeland – incumbent
- Tamela Cooper
All candidates intend to run on the Republican primary ticket, May 19. No Democratic candidates have announced intent to seek office in Towns County at the time of publication. Office of the Commissioner, Tax Commissioner, Probate Judge, and Clerk of Court remain uncontested thus far. Official qualification for candidacy, however, takes place during the week of March 2.
“The Towns County Republican Party does not endorse any candidate or candidate’s committee in a contested Republican Primary,” Young stated.
The Feb. 27 meeting begins at 6 p.m. at the Towns County Civic Center, adjacent to the Towns County Courthouse. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Meetings are open to the public.
“The Changes to the By-laws or Rules as referred to from now on, of the Republican Party of Towns County, are presented below, per requirement to be voted on the following meeting, March 19, 2020,” GOP Chair Young stated in an email.
RULES OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY OF TOWNS COUNTY, INC.
As adopted on
ARTICLE I – GENERAL
1. Code: Georgia Election Code, O.C.G.A. §183-1, et seq., as existing at the time of adoption of these Rules and as may be amended from time to time.
2. County Committee: As defined in Article II.C, below.
3. Executive Committee: As defined in Article II.D, below.
4. Georgia GOP Rules: The Rules of the Georgia Republican Party, Inc., as existing at the time of adoption of these Rules and as may be amended from time to time.
5. National GOP Rules: The Rules of the Republican National Committee, as existing at the time of adoption of these rules and as may be amended from time to time.
6. Ninth District Rules: The Ninth District Republic Party of Georgia Rules, as existing at the time of adoption of these Rules and as may be amended from time to time.
7. Quorum: As defined in Article II.J.3, below.
8. Rules: These Rules of the Republican Party of Towns County, Inc.
9. TCGOP: The Republican Party of Towns County, Inc., a Georgia nonprofit corporation
10. TCGOP Beliefs: Those certain beliefs enumerated in Article I.B.2 herein.
B. Mission and TCGOP Beliefs:
1. Mission. The purpose of the TCGOP is to elect Republicans to public office; identify, recruit, cultivate and support Republican candidates for elective office and conservative candidates for nonpartisan offices; promote conservative values in local, state and national communities; promote the TCGOP Beliefs; and carry out the legal direction of the district, state and national Republican organizations.
2. TCGOP Beliefs. The TCGOP believes in:
a. The U.S. Constitution, as written;
b. States’ rights;
c. a limited roll for government intervention into individuals’ work for prosperity
d. the right to life, from conception to natural death;
e. the idea that each person is responsible for his/her own place within society;
f. the Voter Identification Law;
g. one vote for one legal voter within the framework of the electoral college;
h. the idea that every legal American citizen has a right to vote and for his/her vote to count;
i. the notion that English should be America’s primary language, spoken and written;
j. a strong hand against human trafficking;
k. a strong stance against sharia law;
l. supporting the Immigration and Customs Enforcement; and
m. supporting our military, law enforcement and first responders.
C. Qualifications for Participation in Party Action: All qualified voters under the laws of the State of Georgia who are residents of Towns County, Georgia, and are in accord with the principles of the Republican Party, believe in its declaration of policy and are in agreement with its aims and purposes, may participate as members of the TCGOP in the Conventions and caucuses of the Republican Party in their respective jurisdictions. All Chairmen and Members of Committees, Delegates and Alternates to Conventions and voters in caucuses, provided for in these Rules, shall be members of the TCGOP and must be qualified, registered voters of the respective precincts which they represent and shall have signed a declaration of identification with the Republican Party.
D. Relation of State and County Rules: These Rules are adopted pursuant to the Georgia GOP Rules. Should any of these Rules conflict with or be incompatible with the Georgia GOP Rules, the Georgia GOP Rules shall control.
E. State Election Laws: These Rules, where appropriate, shall be subject to the Code. Terms used but not defined herein shall have the definitions ascribed thereto in the Code.
ARTICLE II – COUNTY ORGANIZATION
A. NAME: The name of the organization shall be the Republican Party of Towns County, Inc., herein referred to as the “TCGOP”.
B. Membership of the TCGOP: The TCGOP shall consist of the County Committee, the Executive Committee and such other members-at-large as shall qualify under these Rules. The TCGOP may, upon a two-thirds vote of a quorum present, enlarge the Executive Committee as additional Republicans are elected to office and as additional precincts become organized. Use of the word “chairman” is intended to refer to either sex.
C. County Committee: The County Committee may consist of any or all of the following members, with a minimum of a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer:
- County Chairman
- First Vice Chairman
- Second Vice Chairman
- Third Vice Chairman
- District Chairmen (one from each Commission District)
- Assistant Secretary
- Assistant Treasurer
- Immediate Past County Chairman
- Chairman, Elections
- Chairman, Membership Committee
- Chairman, Communications
- Chairman, Headquarters Operations
- Director of Community Outreach
- Chairman, Community Relations
- Chairman, Rules Committee
- Chairman, Resource Development Committee
- Precinct Chairmen, from each organized Precinct
- Authorized Voting Members: All individuals listed below qualify as members of the TCGOP and may participate in its business, upon oral or written notification to the Secretary:
- All previous Chairmen of the County Committee;
- the present and all past Chairmen of the Ninth Congressional District Republican Committee provided that they are residents of Towns County;
- the present and all past Chairmen of the Georgia Republican Party provided that they are residents of Towns County;
- Georgia GOP State Committee Members residing in Towns County;
- incumbent Republican public office holders within Towns County; and
- the Presidents/Chairmen of any Towns County Area Young Republican Clubs, Federation of Republican Women’s Clubs, Black Republican Councils, or College Republican Clubs which are sanctioned by their respective State and National Organization and provided they are residents of Towns County.
22. Members-at-Large: Shall be admitted upon their signature of their membership card acknowledging their accordance with the TCGOP Beliefs and payment in full of their annual dues.
D. Executive Committee of the TCGOP: There shall be an Executive Committee of the TCGOP composed of members listed in Article II.C.1 through II.C.21. The Executive Voting members shall include those listed in Article II.C.1 through II.C.11. (The Assistant Secretary and the Assistant Treasurer shall only have voting rights in the absence of the Secretary and the Treasurer). The County Chairman shall be the Chairman of the Executive Committee. At the call of the Chairman, the Executive Committee shall conduct the routine business of the TCGOP and act in emergencies when there would not be adequate time to convene the full membership of the TCGOP.t the routine business of the
E. Election of the TCGOP Officers: All persons holding office as listed in Article II.C.1. through II.C.9, as well as the Delegates and Alternates to the District and State Conventions, shall be nominated and elected at the County Convention held pursuant to the call of the Georgia State Republican Committee subject to the following exceptions:
1. District Chairmen: Within the four-week period following the Precinct Caucuses held pursuant to the State Call in each District, or within the four-week period following a vacancy created for any reason, the elected Precinct Chairmen from the precincts in that District shall meet to elect a resident of that District to be the District Chairman to serve on the TCGOP. If no election has been held prior to the County Convention, this election may be held during a recess of the County Convention. If a reasonable effort to fill the TCGOP District Chairman position for a particular District fails, the position may be filled from members of other Districts.
2. From the electorate of Towns County, the County Chairman may appoint a person to be Counsel to the Party (who shall also be a nonvoting member of the County Committee and Executive Committee) and persons to be Chairmen of the following Committees, or such other Committees as may be appropriate:
- Communications/Public Relations: (Shall maintain the TCGOP webpage and membership e-mail roster. Shall send out communication as directed by the TCGOP Chairman. Shall post updates on TCGOP Facebook Page.)
- Community Outreach: (Shall be responsible for organizing community outreach and attending local civic clubs and groups (such as the Rotary Club) on behalf of the party. Shall plan events to increase party membership.)
- Elections: (Shall work in conjunction with the Board of Elections related to election dates and candidate qualifying.)
- Headquarters Operations: (Shall be responsible for the day-to-day operations of TCGOP Headquarters: volunteers, event preparation, mail. Shall be responsible for maintenance and repairs of the TCGOP Headquarters. Shall work in conjunction with the building landlord.)
- Membership: (Shall be responsible for member recruitment and membership roster.)
- Resource Development: (Shall be responsible for planning and coordinating fundraising activities for TCGOP.)
- Rules: (Shall be responsible for updating and maintaining the By-Laws for TCGOP.)
3. Precinct Chairmen: Elected at the caucuses
4. Authorized Voting Members: Become members upon proper notification to the TCGOP as outlined in Article II.C.21.
F. Election of County Members to the Ninth District Committee:
1. The total number of members elected shall be determined as specified in the Ninth District Rules, Article 1.1.
2. Pursuant to Article 2.2.B.4 of the Ninth District Rules, the County Chairman shall serve on the Ninth District Executive Committee; unless said Chairman otherwise declines not to serve in writing to the District Secretary.
3. Pursuant to Article 2 of the Ninth District Rules, additional members may be added. These members shall be elected by the County Chairman and an interim Nominating Committee. The Nominating Committee Members shall be appointed every odd-year to serve an interim period (to only conduct the business of this committee), by the County Chairman as follows: consisting of members from the Executive Committee and the members-at-large.
4. Members shall be elected, each odd year, to the Ninth District Committee for a two-year term. Any vacancies may be filled at the discretion of the County Chairman with the approval of the Executive Committee.
G. Term of Office of the TCGOP: The officers and members of the TCGOP shall be elected for a term of two years or until their successors are duly elected. Officers (as listed in Article II.C.1- 4, and 6 – 9) may serve a maximum of two consecutive two-year terms in the same position.
H. Vacancies on the TCGOP:
- A vacancy is deemed to exist upon the happening of any one of the following:
- Failure to be a voter of Towns County.
- Failure of the voters in a precinct to organize.
- Failure of the Precinct Chairmen in organized precincts to elect a District Chairman.
- Extended failure to act. Such failure shall be determined by a two-thirds majority vote of a quorum present at any duly called meeting of the TCGOP. Provided, however, that the individual involved is given notice of such meeting mailed at least 30 days in advance thereof, setting forth the grounds therefore, and is given an opportunity to be present and heard in person. Extended failure to act as used herein shall include continued failure to perform his/her duties or participate in the affairs of the Party, or conduct detrimental to the best interests of the Party, all as may be determined by the aforesaid vote of the TCGOP.
- A vacancy shall include any office not filled by the County Convention.
- Vacancies in any of the offices comprising the Executive Committee, with the exception of the District Chairmen and the immediate Past Chairman of the TCGOP, shall be filled by election at a regular or special meeting of the TCGOP.
- Vacancies in the office of the District Chairman or Precinct Chairman in organized or unorganized precincts shall be filled by eligible persons appointed by the Executive Committee on an interim basis. At the next regular or special meeting of the TCGOP, such an appointment shall be confirmed as a member of the TCGOP by a majority vote of those present.
- Upon the happening of any of the events described above or the certification by a duly licensed physician that the County Chairman is incapable to act or conduct the usual and ordinary business of the County Party, such certification is to be referred to the County Party, such certification is to be referred to the TCGOP for action. In the event that the TCGOP takes action to remove the Chairman, the First Vice Chairman shall assume the duties and position of County Chairman. Should the First Vice Chairman decline to accept the position of Chairman, he/she shall call a special meeting of the TCGOP for the purpose of electing a new Chairman. The First Vice Chairman would continue to serve until the end of his term.
- Vacancies in any of the Committee Chairmen positions appointed by the County Chairman, as listed in Article II.E.2, shall be replaced at the discretion of the County Chairman with the approval of the Executive Committee.
I. Removal from Office
1. TCGOP Members: any member listed in Article II.C.1 through II.C.22 may be removed from office or membership for cause by a two-thirds vote of a quorum present, by secret ballot, at any duly called meeting of the TCGOP; provided however, such individual must be given written notice of said meeting mailed or circulated by written electronic communication at least 30 days in advance thereof, setting forth the grounds for removal, and given the opportunity to be heard in person or by his/her representative. “Cause” as used herein shall include:
a. Failure to perform duties of his/her office for an unreasonable period of time, as determined by the Executive Committee with the approval of the TCGOP
b. Failure to participate in the affairs of the Party
c. Conduct detrimental to the best interests of the Party
d. Public service or professional service to any candidate in opposition to the official Republican candidate in a general election by an elected officer shall constitute conduct detrimental to the best interests of the party
2. As soon as an officer qualifies to run for an elected public office (including non-partisan races) for which at least one other Republican has also qualified, he/she shall be deemed to have resigned. Any officer who qualifies as a candidate for an elected public office (including non-partisan races) for which no other Republican has also qualified shall be deemed to have resigned immediately upon being elected to that office. As soon as an officer qualifies as a candidate for elected office as a candidate of any political party other than the Republican Party, he/she shall be deemed to have resigned all positions on the County, Municipal, Precinct, or other TCGOP governing committees.
3. Whenever the Executive Committee and TCGOP determine the Chairman or other officer is subject to removal for cause as defined in Article II.J.1.a. through d., or Article II.J.2, and remedial action has not been taken, and the 30-day notification period has expired, the TCGOP shall remove such Chairman or officer and shall appoint a new Chairman or officer. The Chairman or officer appointed shall perform the duties of the office until his/her successor is duly elected at a County Convention.
J. Meetings of the TCGOP:
1. Regular Meetings: The TCGOP shall hold regular meetings at least quarterly, but may hold monthly meetings, at the pleasure of the Chairman, generally on the third Thursday of each month. In case of a conflict, the Chairman may schedule the meeting on another day of the month. In the event of exceptional circumstances, the Executive Committee may cancel a scheduled meeting with immediate notice to all TCGOP Members. Notice of such meetings shall be emailed or mailed to all members of the TCGOP and mailed to members who do not have an email address on file at least 10 days prior to the date of the meeting. As referred to in these Rules, these are considered to be regular meetings.
2. Special Meetings: The Chairman may call special meetings if he/she chooses to do so, provided proper notice as detailed in Article II.J.1 above is given. When requested in writing by at least 15% of the total membership of TCGOP, the Chairman must call a special meeting. Such special meeting must be held within 15 days of the receipt of the request by the Chairman. If, and only if, the meeting notice so specifies, other items of TCGOP business may be considered. Should the Chairman fail to call such a special meeting, then a mailed notice, signed by the 15% of the TCGOP members requesting said special meeting, shall constitute proper notice of the special meeting. Such notice shall specify the date, time, place and purpose of the special meeting. In the absence of the Chairman, the First Vice Chairman shall preside over this special meeting.
3. Quorum: A quorum is constituted upon the attendance of a majority of the members of the TCGOP at a meeting, in person or by proxy. We hereby acknowledge that one person may serve in multiple positions, however, there shall be a one person one vote rule. No more than a total of three proxies may be counted in order to establish a quorum.
- A member may direct his/her proxy to any other member of the TCGOP, except that no proxy may be directed to, or voted by, the Chairman.
- Members of the Executive Committee may direct his/her proxy only to another member of the Executive Committee.
- No TCGOP member may vote more than three proxies.
- No member may give his/her proxy more than four times during their term of office, unless, in the opinion of the TCGOP, good cause exists.
- Proxy blanks are to be included with the call to each meeting in the form set forth in the Ninth District rules.
J. Duties of the TCGOP: The TCGOP, in its entirety, shall call the County Conventions and Precinct Caucuses or County Primary, make arrangements therefore, fix the basis of representation by Delegates and Alternates to the County Convention consistent with the State Rules, and shall set the time and place for holding the County Convention. It shall cooperate with the State Committee and its Congressional District Committee in conducting all elections within its boundaries. The TCGOP shall decide all controversies and contests arising within its jurisdiction, with the right to appeal to the District Committee within 30 days after the decision by a petition signed by at least 25 qualified Republican electors of the political unit affected.
ARTICLE III – DUTIES OF OFFICERS, DISTRICT CHAIRMEN AND PRECINCT CHAIRMEN
- County Chairman:
- Is the Chief Executive Officer and spokesperson of the TCGOP and shall perform all duties required by these Rules.
- Shall convene the TCGOP as the Rules and needs of the Party dictate.
- Presides at all TCGOP meetings and all Executive Committee meetings.
- Appoints committees called for in the Rules and such other committees he/she may deem desirable.
- Shall appoint a presiding officer for Precinct caucuses in those instances when the Precinct Chairman is unable to attend.
- Presides at all County Conventions.
- Appoints interim County Convention committees and their respective Chairmen subject to the approval of the TCGOP.
- Is responsible for the general direction and affairs of the Party.
- Must review and approve all outgoing correspondence to be emailed, mailed or distributed to the TCGOP at large or to the public. The County Chairman may designate this duty from time-to-time to the First Vice Chairman to make such approvals.
All officers shall assist the County Chairman
C. First Vice Chairman
1. As provided for in the Rules, presides in the absence of the Chairman.
2. Shall assist the Treasurer with the Finance Committee and the Chairmen of the Rules, Resource Development, and Headquarters Operations Committees.
D. Second Vice Chairman. Shall assist the District Chairmen and the Chairmen of the Elections and Membership Committees.
E. Third Vice Chairman. Shall assist the Chairmen of the Community Outreach and Communications/Public Relations Committees.
F. Treasurer. The Treasurer shall have the following responsibilities and duties:
1. Shall have custody and responsibility of the funds of the TCGOP, and shall deposit said funds in a bank selected by the Executive Committee. These funds may be drawn as prescribed or approved by the Executive Committee.
2. Shall collect and deposit all funds at least monthly.
3. Shall prepare all checks and sign them, together with one other Officer designated on the bank account. In the absence of the Treasurer, checks may be prepared by the Assistant Treasurer and signed by the Assistant Treasurer, together with the County Chairman or First Vice Chairman. No officer may sign a non-operational check in excess of $500 without the prior approval of the Executive Committee. No disbursements shall be made without an invoice, paid receipt or written request.
4. Shall make and keep an accurate record of all income and disbursements and have available at all Executive and TCGOP meetings a current financial report summarizing income, expense, assets and liabilities of the TCGOP.
5. Shall serve on the Resource Development Committee, as applicable. This committee, if formed, shall track financial status, provide oversight and prepare an annual budget for each new year for review and approval by the Executive Committee by December of the current year.
6. Shall, in the event the Executive Committee believes it to be in the best interest of the TCGOP, prepare an internal audit of the records of the Treasurer to be presented to the TCGOP, and shall work with all relevant Committees in the preparation of any such audit.
G. Assistant Treasurer. In the absence of the Treasurer, the Assistant Treasurer shall perform the duties of the Treasurer.
1. Shall maintain the lists of the Executive, County, District, and State Committee members, contributors, and the like, publish notices and other materials as required by the party rules and/or the Code. The Secretary shall also record the minutes of all Executive and TCGOP meetings including the date, identity of those in attendance, and a record of all actions taken. Executive Committee minutes should be emailed or mailed within ten (10) days. The Secretary shall also determine and announce the status of a quorum at all Executive and TCGOP meetings. The minutes from the most recent past county meeting shall be emailed or mailed with the notice of each upcoming official-call County meeting sent out by the County Chairman. All correspondence distributed to the Executive or TCGOP at large or the public must be approved by the County Chairman prior to distribution.
2. Shall, or shall direct the County Chairman to, maintain a “Minute Book” with the minutes from all meetings during his/her tenure. A complete and current copy of said book to be kept at the TCGOP office. If the TCGOP has no office, the TCGOP Chairman shall retain the copy of the Minute Book.
3. Shall, or shall direct the County Chairman to, maintain an official TCGOP “Member List Book” with a list of the names and contact information of all Executive Committee, TCGOP, TCGOP Members of the Ninth District Committee, Towns County Republican elected officials, and GA State GOP Members who are current TCGOP participants. Said book to be kept at TCGOP office. If the TCGOP has no office, the TCGOP Chairman shall retain the copy of the Member List Book.
I. Assistant Secretary. In the absence of the Secretary, the Assistant Secretary shall perform the duties of the Secretary.
J. District Chairmen
- Serve on the Executive Committee.
- Be responsible for assisting in the recruitment of Precinct Chairmen in their District.
- Maintain periodic contact with Precinct Chairmen in their District.
- Assist in obtaining poll watchers during elections.
K. Precinct Chairmen
- Be responsible for maintaining contact with the voters in their precinct.
- Assist with the conduct of voter canvasses.
- Assist with recruitment of Poll Watchers.
L. Duties/Responsibilities for Vice Chairmen, District Chairs, Precinct Chairs, Committee Chairmen
1. Will establish an action plan and objectives.
2. Will submit said action plan to the Executive Committee within thirty (30) days after being elected to or accepting said position.
ARTICLE IV – MEMBERSHIP DONORS
The TCGOP membership application and donor fees shall be determined by the Membership Committee with the approval of the Executive Committee or, in the absence of a Membership Committee, by the Executive Committee.
ARTICLE V – CONVENTIONS AND CAUCUSES
A. The call for Conventions and Caucuses shall conform to the Ninth District Rules, the Georgia GOP Rules, the National GOP Rules and the Code.
B. The conduct of Precinct Caucuses and the designating of Delegates and Alternates to the County Convention shall conform to the Ninth District Rules, the Georgia GOP Rules, the National GOP Rules and the Code.
C. Interim Committees: The County Chairman shall appoint the following Interim County Convention Committees and their respective Chairmen subject to the approval of the TCGOP at the January quarterly meeting held in odd-numbered years and in Presidential Election years:
- Nominating Committee
- Rules Committee
- Credentials Committee
- Platform Committee
- Resolutions Committee
Each Committee may consist of a Chairman plus three to six members. No person may serve on more than one Committee. Each Interim Committee shall have a majority of members who are members of the TCGOP.
D. Delegates and Alternate Delegates: Persons elected to be Delegates and Alternates to the District and State Conventions shall be allocated among the Commission Districts pro rata in accordance with the number of votes cast therein for the Republican candidate for President in the last General Election provided, as a sufficient number of Republicans living in a District desire to so participate. If a reasonable effort to fill the allotted number of Delegates and Alternates in a District fails, vacancies may be filled with persons from other Districts.
E. Any contested races elections shall be conducted by secret ballot.
ARTICLE VI – AMENDMENTS
A. These Rules may be amended at any County Convention by a majority vote or at any regular meeting (or special meeting called for such purpose) by a two-thirds vote of a quorum present. With respect to action to amend by the TCGOP, such meeting must be duly held and written notice setting forth in detail; the proposed intention to amend the Rules shall accompany the emailed and/or mailed notice of the meeting.
ARTICLE VII – ROBERT’S RULES OF ORDER
A. Except to the extent modified by these Rules, Robert’s Rules of Order (latest revision) shall govern the conduct of all meetings.
For additional information, contact Betsy Young at [email protected]