OPALCO’s Board of Director election is a cornerstone of Co-op Democracy. OPALCO depends on an independent member Elections & Governance Committee to cultivate quality candidates and review election processes and policy. OPALCO works with a third party election vendor to ensure a secure and fair election.
- OPALCO’s bylaws prescribe the complete elections process, including nominations, qualifications, public notification and timelines.
- In 2016, a member review committee was enlisted to review OPALCO’s election process, including bylaw and policies. Most of the committee’s recommendations were adopted by the Board in October 2016 and January 2017, including bylaw changes.
- The Elections & Governance Committee (EGC), made up of independent co-op members, serves as the nominations committee for Board Elections. The EGC interviews and recommends a slate of candidates for board approval. OPALCO staff and leadership are purposefully removed from the nominations process to keep it member-centric. There are openings on the EGC and OPALCO welcomes additional member volunteers who are willing to help in our efforts and, especially, those who can help to increase our reach to seek and encourage qualified candidates of all stripes.
- Co-op members can also be nominated with a petition signed by at least 20 bonafide members from their district.
- All candidates, including incumbents, must go through the full nominations process which includes a disclosure form and culminates in a review by OPALCO’s legal counsel for bylaw compliance and potential conflicts of interest.
- Each membership gets one vote. A membership may have multiple meters attached to their membership. � Ballots and voter materials are sent to each membership entity (individual, business or organization) by email or by USPS, depending on stated member preference. Online balloting is the most cost effective and secure method.
- Ballots are collected by OPALCO’s third party vendor, who guarantees a secure election.
- Results are announced at OPALCO’s annual meeting and then published online and on local news sources.
Reference links from OPALCO’s online Resource Library:
Elections & Goverance: www.opalco.com/resource-library/#rlfelectionsandgovernanceelections