After conducting the "Exempt" vs. "Non-exempt" vote for the Rehabilitation Therapist Task Force Outreach Committee, the Election Committee received four protests. Below (and to follow) are the protests and the Election Committee’s responses to each of the protests.
Protest #3 filed on November 13 by Rafael Garcia:
Dear Mr. President and AFSCME Local 2620,
Re: RT Vote
The Powers Vested to all members to challenge elections are according to Appendix D, Election Code, of the AFSCME International(Election Code): Section 4, Number 3, If the subordinate body determines that there were violations which may have affected the outcome of the election, it may order such election or any part thereof set aside, and a new election held.
I challenge the decision made by the committee on grounds that no majority was reached on either for exempt or maintain non-exempt.
According to Election Code, Section 1, Number 10, upon completion of the voting, the ballots shall be tabulated and the candidate for each office receiving a majority of the votes cast for that office shall be declared elected.
The count resulted in 267 votes cast. Nine (9) envelope or ballots were invalidated. The final tally was 130 votes to remain Hourly (Non-exempt) and 128 votes to become Salary (Exempt) employees.
Although there is mention that for the purposes of this vote only 258 are part of the total ballots cast. I challenge this conclusion. As mentioned above, a majority must be reached in accordance with all votes cast. All votes cast is in actuality 267. Furthermore, Pursuant to Article XIV Authority Section 4 of the AFSME 2620 constitution, we, AFSCME Local 2620, are governed by Robert’s Rule of Order, Newly revised (RRONR), when not inconsistent with the constitution.
Per RRONR, an illegal vote is still counted as a vote cast in relation to a majority vote, so long as it is not blank. In this instance, an invalidated ballot/envelope is considered illegal because they function as interchangeable terms. Which results in those illegal votes being a part of the total cast ballots which makes it a total cast ballots of 267 and the basis of majority votes. In order for either side to reach majority, it must exceed 133.5 votes(or proportional amount depending on blank ballots) and be declared a victor. As a result, pursuant to RRONR, we the members of the RT classification must vote again in the interest of justice.
In addition, I would like a line item explanation of each ballot/envelop invalidated.
The Election Committee requested supporting evidence. No supporting documentary evidence was provided.
The Election Committee’s response:
As this was not an election, there is no "candidate" who needed to receive "a majority of the votes cast" to "be declared elected."
It was not stated that there were 267 "votes cast," but that 267 envelopes were returned. Eight envelopes and one ballot were invalidated.
Regarding the eight envelopes which were invalidated: six were members who are not part of the affected classifications, one was sent in by a non-member; and one envelope was not completed on the outside. Not all of the eight envelopes had ballots contained within them; thus, they cannot be counted towards the overall vote count, as they were not all votes. The one ballot was invalidated because of writing on it, which went against the instructions provided.
The Election Committee