The following article is part 1 of a 5-part series of articles breaking down the Election Code of Lac Courte Oreilles Tribal Law. This series will be reprinted from the Election Code, which will explain the Tribe’s election process as Saturday, April 1, is the nominating caucus setting the stage for which candidates will run for the four open seats on the Tribal Governing Board.
The five parts are as follows: Part 1 Election Committee, Part 2 Election Process, Part 3 Caucus and Nominating, Part 4 Primary and General Election, Part 5 Other Election Processes.
The Election Code is not printed in its entirety, only relevant parts to explain the actual process.
Subchapter ELE.1.3 Election Committee and Polling Site Workers
ELE.1.3.010 Election Committee
(a) The Election Committee shall be established on the day of the Caucus as established pursuant to ELE.1.5.010 (c) of this ordinance, by virtue of nominations by the general membership, and shall be composed of seven (7) nominated and elected band members along with one designated member from the Enrollment Department ("Enrollment Clerk"), who does not vote in matters before the Election Committee or Election Executive Committee.
(b) The duties of the Election Committee shall be to develop procedures in accordance with this ordinance, run an orderly election, hear and attempt to resolve any grievances and irregularities, and to provide election and voter education.
(c) In the event that grievances and irregularities cannot be resolved by the Election Committee, they shall be referred to the Tribal Court for resolution.
(d) The Election Committee shall meet as soon as possible after the Caucus to select an Executive Committee.
(e) The Tribal Governing Board has adopted a "Code of Ethics" (Attachment "D") which governs the conduct of the members of the Election Committee. Each member of the Election Committee shall receive a copy of the "Code of Ethics" and shall be required to sign a copy of such, stating that they have read the "Code of Ethics" and agree to abide by its provisions during their tenure on the committee. The members of the Election Committee are given the same three (3) working day period to sign the Code of Ethics. In the event that a member of the Election Committee does not sign the Code of Ethics, they shall be removed from the Election Committee and the Election Committee Alternate shall be asked to fill the position.
(f) If a member of the Election Committee fails to sign the acceptance form, then that member shall be removed from the Election Committee and the alternate (the next highest vote getter) shall be asked to fill that position. The alternate must sign the Code of Ethics in accordance with subsection (e) above.
(g) No one person shall serve on the Election Committee who is a direct relation of a nominee or candidate.
ELE.1.3.020 Placement of Election Committee Members
(a) Election Committee Chairperson. The Chairperson of the Election Committee shall not be assigned a Teller position but must be available for travel to and from the polling sites to take care of the needs of the Committee Members on duty. The Chairperson shall be responsible for delivering all printed materials to election sites, as well as collecting lunch and dinner orders pursuant to ELE.1.3.010 (h) (2).
(b) Enrollment Department. The designated member of the Election Committee from the Enrollment Department (Enrollment Clerk) pursuant ELE.1.3.010 (a), shall be present in the Enrollment Department on Election Day, so that the eligibility of any voter may be determined.
(c) Placement of the Other Members of the Election Committee
(1) Tribal Administration Building. Four (4) members of the Election Committee shall be assigned to the Tribal Administration Building polling site.
(2) New Post Elderly Center. Two (2) members of the Election Committee shall be assigned to the New Post Elderly Center polling site.
ELE.1.3.040 Executive Committee
(a) An Executive Committee of the Election Committee shall consist of the following three (3) members who shall be selected by the Election Committee members upon their election:
(1) Chairperson of the Election Committee whom shall preside at all Committee meetings and maintain order, and as official representative of the Committee;
(2) Vice Chairperson of the Election Committee whom shall preside in the absence of the Chairperson or whenever the Chairperson temporarily vacates the chair. In case of resignation or removal of the Chairperson, the Vice-Chairperson shall assume the position until a permanent chair is elected, and perform other duties as assigned; and
(3) Secretary/Treasurer of the Election Committee whom shall record the minutes of every meeting; maintain a file/record of minutes; assist the Chairperson in following the agenda; record and read motions as they are made; keep accurate records, and perform other duties as assigned.
(b) The duties of the Executive Committee shall be to handle any urgent problems that may arise, that would not be able to wait for a scheduled meeting of the Election Committee.
ELE.1.3.050 Election Committee Advisor
The Tribal Attorney shall act as advisor to the Election Committee.
The maximum budget for the Election Committee shall not exceed the amount as approved by the Tribal Governing Board. The Chairperson shall establish the budget which shall include: printing, postage, meeting expense, mileage, advertisement, and all election day expenses. The Election Committee Chairperson shall be responsible for presenting a budget to the Tribal Governing Board for approval.
Observers shall be selected on the day of the Caucus as established pursuant to ELE.1.5.010 (d), by virtue of nominations by the general membership. Upon the completion of the election process, on the date of the election, the observers shall sign a final statement stating whether or not they have witnessed a properly run voting and tallying process (Attachment "F"). If the statement is not signed and returned to the Chairperson of the Election Committee upon the completion of the election process, it shall be noted that they are in agreement that the process was carried out according to policy. If they are not in agreement that the process was carried out according to policy, the observer must so indicate on the final statement and state their reasons. Observers shall not transmit any premature information regarding the election results. If they do so, the observers shall not be paid, shall not be permitted to act as observers in future elections, and may be subject to disciplinary action.
ELE.1.3.080 Security Officers
A written request shall be made by the Election Committee Chairperson to the Lac Courte Oreilles Police Department, Lac Courte Oreilles Fire Department, and/or Conservation Department for three officers to provide security at the polling sites on Election Day. Security officers shall remain with the members of the Election Committee and polling site workers until such time as all ballots have been counted, election results certified, and cast ballots secured. Security officers shall not transmit any premature information regarding the election results by radio or electronic communication, or otherwise. If they do so, the security officers shall not be paid, shall not be permitted to act as security in future elections, and may be subject to disciplinary action.