In January 2014, with the meeting in Rocky Mount, N.C., our triennial Local 16 elections will commence. Nominations for offices ranging from President to Local Chairman will be opened. The following is an explanation of the structure and process for the election of Local Officers and members of our Southeast General Committee which are outlined in our BRS Constitution. In addition, we will also be electing BRS Convention delegates by nomination and election. It will be a busy year of balloting, so be sure to follow the directions supplied with each ballot so, if desired, any member can successfully participate in the process.
Local 16 elections are held every three years. The members of Local 16 nominate and elect officers of the Local which include the President, Vice President, Second Vice President, Financial Secretary, Recording Secretary, and three Local Trustees. In addition, members of Local 16 nominate and elect the members, or Local Chairmen, that, in addition to the officers, comprise the Southeast General Committee. Each local chairman has a specified district within the boundaries of Local 16 which are the lines of the former Seaboard Coastline Railroad (SCL), Georgia Railroad and the Atlanta and West Point Route (AWP). The nominating ballot each member receives will outline the boundaries of the local chairman districts. A Local 16 member nominated for the position of local chairman must be headquartered within the boundaries of that district. The two positions of Construction North and Construction South Local Chairmen must work under the direction of a construction supervisor. An eligible nominee for Construction South Local Chairman must reside in either Georgia, Florida, or Alabama, or in a state south of the parallel line at the Georgia Tennessee border. To be eligible for Construction North Local Chairman a nominee must reside in either Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, or in a state north of the parallel line at the Georgia Tennessee border. These geographical specifications are a part of the General Committee By-laws and will be included for each local chairman position on the nominating ballot. Any member nominated outside of these boundaries will be declared ineligible.
There are a total of 10 members (local chairmen) on the Southeast General Committee. The General Chairman and other officers of the committee are elected every four years from and by the members serving on this committee.
Another requirement to be eligible for nomination is an individual must have membership in good standing with the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen for one year. Be sure to study each ballot and determine your choices based on a member’s eligibility, desire to run for office, their willingness to serve and knowledge/experience. Each member in good standing will have a vote for every office and district within the boundaries of Local 16. Nominating ballots will be sent out after the Rocky Mount meeting. Members wishing to place nominations will return their ballots to the Local 16 Recording Secretary, TP Hudson, at the address provided and he will compile the results and issue an election ballot. Pay close attention to the manner in which a ballot is returned. Instructions will be enclosed to provide a secret ballot process. The laws governing elections are outlined in the BRS Constitution, Article 2, Sections 16-20.
In addition to our Local election, we will be nominating and electing delegates and alternates to attend the 2014 BRS Convention. This process begins with a determination by Grand Lodge, according to our membership numbers, as to the maximum number of delegates we will be allowed to send. This information from Grand Lodge, along with a financial report of our Local treasury, will be provided by our Financial Secretary at Rocky Mount. Local 16 members present at the Rocky Mount meeting will decide by a majority vote whether Local 16 will be represented at the 2014 Convention and if so, how many delegates to send.
When the number of delegates has been determined, the Recording Secretary will send out a nominating ballot. The only requirement of eligibility to be a delegate is to be a member for one year in good standing. Our Local will be electing delegates and alternates according to the BRS Constitution, Article 1, Sections 93 to 105. The Recording Secretary will receive and compile nominations then issue an election ballot. Our Local 16 by-laws do not provide salary for this Convention week, so it is customary that delegates take vacation time for their compensation or an elected delegate can be UBS (union business, no compensation) for the purposes of reporting time off with the railroad. Delegates will be on expenses for that week, so approved out of pocket expenditures will be reimbursed. The Convention will convene on July 16 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
So, 2014 will bring two simultaneous elections. For those who have not participated in past elections, please carefully read and follow instructions that will be provided with each mailing. You will receive minutes and ballots by United States Postal Service until the election process has concluded. The BRS Constitution requires a 30 day notice for the nomination meeting and the election meeting. For the purpose of aiding that notification, our nominations will open at Rocky Mount, January 18, 2014 and close at LaGrange, Ga., on March 15, 2014. Ballots will be sent out to each member’s last known address immediately following the LaGrange meeting. Please make sure the Recording Secretary has your correct address, updating it with CSX does not update it with the BRS.
Instructions will be provided as to the location that these ballots will be sent. It is customary for ballots to be sent to a post office box and retrieved at the start of the election meeting. The election meeting will be held at the Pineville, NC (near Charlotte) meeting on May 17, 2014. It is imperative that we have our Convention delegates in place and notified as soon as possible so they can make travel arrangements. Officers and members of the General Committee will take office as of November 1, 2014.