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KPFA LAB elections guidelines

from: http://www.cfdp.org/

5/8/00 (Approved 5/17/00 with two amendments in Sections B and I)
DRAFT Proposal Guidelines for KPFA Elections KPFA LAB ELECTION PROJECT


A.1 The elected KPFA Station Board (hereafter Board ) will replace and assume the duties of the current, appointed Local Advisory Board (LAB) on the conclusion of elections. The Board is fully empowered to the same extent as the previous LAB to elect representatives to the Pacifica Board of Directors as authorized by the by-laws of Pacifica Foundation.

A.2 Among other functions, the Board shall appoint an Election Coordinator who shall not be a station employee or affiliated with the existing LAB/Board, and who shallmay appoint an election committee (including a LAB/Board liaison) to assist him or her in the implementation of these following election procedures.


B.1 Qualified voters must be a station staffer or a member of the electorate as defined asby the following: three categories:

B.1.1 Any natural person (as opposed to organization) who has subscribed to KPFA with $25 or greater donation in the previous year, defined as the period 1-13 months prior to the close of the nominationstart of the campaign period ( Subscriber Member )

B.1.2 Any natural person who has performed 3 hours of volunteer work at the station in the previous year, defined as the period 1-13 months prior to the start of the campaignclose of the nomination period ( Volunteer Member )

B.1.3 All current programmers, paid staff and unpaid staff at the station with at least 1 months' tenure (Staff )

B.1.4 (Language to be verified from 5/17/00 LAB minutes) For the first election in 2000 only, anyone 20 years or younger upon presenting positive I.D. and proof of age (e.g. student card)


C.1 A candidate must be a qualified voter as defined by the three above-described categories (Subscriber Member, Volunteer Member, or Staff).

C.2 To be nominated, a candidate must present a nomination petition endorsed by 10 other qualified voters to the Election Coordinator by the close of the Nomination period. Only Staff may nominate Staff candidates, only Subscriber and Volunteer Members may nominate listener/community candidates.

C.3 Listener/community candidates shall indicate on their petition if they are male or female and "of color" or not for the purposes of the election diversity goals outlined in Section E.

C.4 The nomination period shall last 45 days, during which time the Election Coordinator shall arrange regional signature-gathering events in the East Bay , North Bay, South Bay, Peninsula, San Francisco, Fresno, Sacramento, and Sierra areas; and over the Internet for on-line listeners. The Election Coordinator should strive to ensure a full slate of diverse candidates.

C.5 The Station General Manager will continue to be an ex-oficio (non-voting) member of the Board, and
shall not run for an elected Board seat.

C.6 For the first Election (to be held in 2000) to replace the existing LAB, current LAB members who desire it will be 'grandfathered' in for one-year terms, and the election will fill the remaining seats of the new Board.

C.7 Regardless of grandfathering, all past members of the LAB will be allowed to run as candidates after meeting the petition requirement.


D.1 The election (officialal campaign & voting) period should beginstart one week after the close of nominations (to allow candidate validation and ballot preparation time) and last 30 days until the close of the election.

Campaign Features:

D.2 Any of the supporter or other organizations associated with KPFA & Pacifica may make candidate endorsements. However, KPFA & Pacifica, the current LAB, and (in the future) the seated Board, as entities, are prohibited from endorsing candidates.

D.3 KPFA shall allot a programming slot at least once during the election period to host all of the candidates for an on-air Q/A forum. Questions should be administered by a non-station moderator appointed by the Election Coordinator. Each Ccandidate or their appointed representative shall participate in at least one of the on-air Q/A forums.

D.4 Community groups, if they desire, may host additional public forums, again with ALL of the candidates being invited to attend, although participation in these forums shall not be mandatory.

D.5 Any other on-air discussion of the election must be confined to encouraging people to vote for their candidate(s) of their choice. ANY on-air programmer who is running will be immediately disqualified if they discuss their candidacy on-air and ANY candidate will be disqualified immediately if they appear on-air to discuss their candidacy outside of an official Q/A session. The Election Coordinator will be the arbiter of disqualifications with appeal to the non-candidate members of the current LAB meeting as a body.

D.6 Candidates shall provide brief answers to a set questionnaire prepared by the Election Coordinator (The LAB Election Project will provide a list of suggested questions), and prepare brief statements of qualifications and vision. These materials shall be used in the on-air forum, posted on an official election website established by the EC, and mailed with the ballots.

D.7 The Election Coordinator shall solicit from the candidates and publicly report the following pledges:

D.7.1 To campaign only usingthrough only the above-described official media (as above: forums, questionnaire, and website )
D.7.2 To disclose those organizations known to be supporting the candidate's campaign.

D.7.3 Candidates who choose to not make either pledge will not be penalized.


D.8 Use paper ballots. If feasible, web-based voting may be considered in the future.
D.9 Write-in candidates will be counted. "None of the Above" will not be an option.

Ballot Distribution:

D.10 An impartial and reputable group whose primary purpose is not related to KPFA or Pacifica shall be appointed by the EC to be in charge of the balloting process.

D.11 The Election Coordinator will compile a list of qualified voters using the station's records. If these records are not made available to the Election Coordinator or the task proves otherwise infeasible, then the Election Coordinator will advise Qualified voters throughout the nomination and election period that they must register (by phone, mail, e-mail, on-line, fax, or in person) to receive a ballot by mail. Registration will close one week before the close of the election period. Ballots may also be downloaded from a designated website and then hardcopies marked and returned as paper ballots.

D.12 Voters will then mail or hand-deliver completed ballots to the Election Coordinator by the close of the election period for verification and counting.

D.13 While ballots themselves will be secret, completed ballots will not be accepted unless delivered with accompanying voter identification: voters shall mail completed ballots in an envelope with return address & voter name(s) clearly indicated, or shall report a name & address for each completed ballot hand-delivered in the presence of an election official.

D.14 A two-thirds vote of Tthe Board must ultimately approve any election. The Board and shallmay consider a minimum voter turnout of 10% of total subscribers for an election to be valid. If the required number of ballots have not been received after the close of the 30-day election period, the Election Coordinator shallmay continue to accept ballots for an additional 30 days and, with the help of the on-air personnel, publicize the ongoing election period until an adequate number of ballots are received. This additional election period shall continue even if the 10% threshold is reached before 30 days have passed. After 60 days, the Board shall vote and, with a two-thirds majority, may validate the election regardless of total voter turnout.


E.1 The Board shall have 22 members total and consist of 8 Staff representatives and 14 listener/community representatives. Board members shall be elected for 2-year terms staggered in annual elections of 11 members each year, making 4 Staff and 7 listener/community representatives elected annually. (For the first election, see Section F below on staggering.) E.2 Voters will nominate and vote for candidates only within their constituency. Within each constituency, voters will rank the candidates by preference and their votes will be counted according to the Choice Vote (or Single Transferable Vote ) method of proportional representation.

"Board may appoint up to three additiona l non-voting members for two-year terms, to provide skills missing among elected members (legal, financial, media, etc.). If possible, such appointed members should be drawn from among the candidates who received votes but were not elected."

Staff Seats:

E.3 Staff should ensure gender, minority, and union/non-union status diversity in their elected representatives to the Board. This document does not prescribe specific rules to attain this diversity and leaves that task to the staff.

Listener/community Seats:

E.4 The goal of the election is to have near-equal representation of gender and race/ethnicity among the 14 Listener/community representatives. This means the Board should seat no more than 8 men or 8 women, AND no more than 8 racial/ethnic minorities (or people of color) or 8 non-minority. Accordingly, the resulting Board balance should be 6-8 or 7-7 on each of these two diversity characteristics (gender and race/ethnicity) depending on the results of each year's election. E.5 Because seats will be staggered two-year terms, each year's election will typically elect half (either 3 or 4) of each diversity cohort. E.6 The Election Coordinator will determine the winning candidates using the Choice Voting method of counting preferential votes, with the added criteria of meeting the diversity goals. This modified system will elect the most-preferred candidates whose addition to the board best meet that year's diversity goals, skipping candidates if necessary.

E.7 For example, if 2 men and 4 women have already been seated, for the final seat the Election Coordinator shall skip higher-ranked women in order to seat a third man. If no male candidate remains, then the highest-ranked woman shall be seated. If, out of six seats, 4 women and 4 non-minorities have been seated, and no male minority candidate remains for the final seat, then the highest-ranked man or person of color shall be seated. Candidates skipped in this process will have their ballots redistributed among the remaining candidates to ensure that voters' preferences are still accurately reflected.


So that future Boards will be elected in two diversity-balanced staggered cohorts of 2-year terms, for this first election only, 4 staff representatives and 7 listener/community representatives will first be seated for 2-year terms according to the processes described in Section E. Any grandfathered current LAB members will be seated for 1-year terms, with as many newly-elected representatives as needed to complete the second 4- or 7-member cohort of staff or listener/community representatives. These newly-elected 1-year term representatives will be selected from among the highest-ranked candidates not seated on the 2-year cohort, and will be selected to balance the diversity of the grandfathered LAB members, again according to the process outlined in Section E.


If a Board member leaves the Board mid-during their term, the Election Coordinator shall consultuse the most recent election's results and fill the vacancy with the next-ranked candidate in correspondence with the Board diversity criteria. The appointee shall complete the remainder of the seat's term.


H.1 The Board in its entirety can be recalled through an initiative process.

H.2 Any qualified voter must collect signatures of other qualified voters (as describedfined in Section B) totalling 15% of the total votes cast in the previous election to force a recall vote.

H.3 Ballots for the recall election should be distributed as described in section E above. The election shall be considered valid only if the number of ballots returned equals 50% of the number of ballots cast in the previous regular Board election. The election period of 30 days may not be extended.

H.4 Recall would require a simple majority (greater than 50%) of the votes cast. If the recall vote succeeds, a new election to replace the whole Board will be held within 90 days. Recalled Board members would be eligible to be re-elected in this election after completing the normal nomination and campaign process..


(Language to be verified from 5/17/00 LAB minutes) Changes to these election rules can be adopted by a 2/3 vote of the Board, except those changes which would affect the voting rights of groups defined in section B, in which case the changes must be approved by a full vote (referendum) of the community.

The Election Project was evenly split on including the following: "Board may appoint up to three additional non-voting members for two-year terms, to provide skills missing among elected members (legal, financial, media, etc.). If possible, such appointed members should be drawn from among the candidates who received votes but were not elected." It was noted that the Board is always empowered to appoint non-Board skilled consultants as needed to assist with Board tasks.

The Election Project was evenly split on removing the caps on the number of women and people of color.


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