The Commission shall be known as the Los Angeles City/County American Indian Commission, L. A. City/County A. I. C. As used in these bylaws, the word “Commission” refers to the L.A. City/County American Indian Commission. We understand American Indian to be inclusive of American Indians of the United States, who are residents of Los Angeles County and the city of Los Angeles.
II. LEGAL AUTHORITY
The Commission was authorized by Article CXIII as added to Ordinance No. 11409 § 1 (part), 1976: Ord. 4099 Art. 113 § 21010, 1942) entitled “Administrative Code of the County of Los Angeles.” The Commission shall prepare and adopt by a majority vote rules and regulations for the internal government of its business and designate the time and place of holding its meetings, provided that such rules and regulations are not inconsistent with or any other County Ordinance or Statute.
The primary purpose of the Commission is to increase the acquisition and application of funding resources to the socioeconomic problems of American Indians in Los Angeles City and County without duplication of any service or activity provided by any other County officer or department.
In performing this function, the Commission will represent the special interest and concerns of American Indians of all tribal and cultural backgrounds, religious convictions, and social circumstances. (Ord ., 11409 § 1 (part), 1976: ord. 4099 Art. 113 §21 011, 1942).
IV. DUTIES AND FUNCTIONS
In order to meets its primary purpose of increasing the acquisition and local application of funding resources the Commission understands the duties and functions outlined in Ordinance 11409 § 3.42.110.
- To promote the development of programs and funding resources to serve urban American Indians and American Indian organizations;
- To advocate legislation and policy favorable to urban American Indians;
- To enhance urban American Indian social and economic activities.
- To research, prepare, and disseminate information in the field of American Indian affairs in collaboration with existing federal, state, and local agencies.
- To assist and coordinate the activities of non-Indian community organizations and private agencies working for the concerns of American Indian people.
- To assist and coordinate relations among federal, state, county, and city agencies, and with the American Indian agencies and organizations.
- To foster pride among American Indians and foster awareness and respect for American Indian culture among Los Angeles County and City residents.
- To study and/or investigate by means of conferences and public hearings conditions which affect the welfare and socioeconomic development of American Indians.
- To develop recommendations to the Board of Supervisors, Mayor and City Council that address the welfare and socioeconomic development of American Indians.
- To advise the residents of the City and County of Los Angeles, the Board of Supervisors, the Mayor, the City Council, and the departments and agencies of these respective governments, or other organizations and institutions on matters involving the needs of American Indians
- Nothing in this article shall be construed as vesting in the Commission any power on duty assigned by charter, law, or ordinance to any power on duty assigned by charter, law, or ordinance to any other County officer, commission, or department, or as authorizing the Commission to engage in any activity or to provide any service which the County is not authorized to conduct and perform. The Commission shall not duplicate any service or activity provided by any other County officer or department.
- To create a Self-Governance Board to meet all requirement of American Indian community self-governance and self-determination (by County Board of Supervisor Motion, 2/23/93).
V. COMMISSION MEMBERS
The Commission shall consist of fifteen (15) members, five (5) to be appointed by the Board of Supervisors, five (5) by the City of Los Angeles, and five (5) selected by the Los Angeles Indian community pursuant to elections conducted by the Commission.
Each member of the Commission shall serve a term of four (year) and until his or her successor is duly appointed or elected and qualifies.
For budgetary and fiscal practices the Commission utilizes the County fiscal year calendar, July 1 to June 30.
VII. CONDUCT OF ELECTIONS
The entire Commission shall prescribe procedures for the election of the five representatives from the American Indian Community. All electors and candidates must be North American Indians and must satisfy criteria of state and federal recognition and legislation for authentication. All exceptions must petition the Nominations and Elections Committee (defined below) and have three verified Indian sponsors from the Los Angeles Indian community.
VIII. DUTIES OF COMMISSIONERS
It shall be the duty of the Commission to:
- make major policy recommendations
- seek federal and private funds
- make reports
- approve budgets
- employ and terminate the Executive Assistant and other employees in accordance with the policies and procedures of the Los Angeles County Government and Civil Service Code.
No action shall be taken by any Commission member on behalf of or in the name of the Commission unless specifically authorized by the Commission.
The Commissioner’s officers will consist of a Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer, and such other officers as the Commission deems necessary. Nominations and election will be at the regular meeting in December, installation will be at the regular meeting in January. Election shall be by secret ballot. There shall be no nominating committee. Term of office is one year, with no more than two consecutive terms in the same office.
X. DUTIES OF OFFICERS
The Chair shall have general supervision of the business, and shall preside at all meetings of the Commission. The Chairperson shall, (a) appoint all committees and committee chairs subject to the ratification of the Commission, unless otherwise ordered, and shall be ex officio member of all committees, (b) or his/her appointee shall represent the Commission at all public functions, (c) shall authenticate by his or her signature, when necessary, all the acts, orders, and proceedings of the Commission.
The Vice-Chairperson shall perform the duties of the Chairperson in his/her absence. He/she shall attend all meetings of the Commission and assume and perform all other duties which may be assigned to him/her.
The Secretary shall be responsible for recording the minutes, and maintaining records of acts, and reports of the Commission and executive meetings. The Secretary shall (a) keep attendance at Commission meetings, and shall be responsible for notification of action for nonattendance, (b) compile standing committee reports and actions before the Commission, (c) sign all minutes after approval by the Commission, (d) perform all duties incident to the office of secretary, subject to the control of the Commission, and (e) in the absence of the Chair and Vice-Chair; exercise the power and perform the duties of the Chair.
The treasurer shall establish, maintain and review fiscal policies and procedures of the Commission.
Upon vacancy occurring in the Commission, or upon the expiration of the term of office of any member, a successor shall be appointed or elected in the same manner as was his/her predecessor. When a vacancy occurs for any reason other the expiration of a term of office, the person filling such vacancy shall hold office for the unexpired term of his predecessor.
There shall be an Executive Committee consisting of four Commissioners: the Chairperson, the Vice-Chairperson, the Secretary, and the Treasurer. The duties of the Executive Committee shall be as follows:
- The Executive Committee shall take action when necessary in behalf of the Commission between regular meetings of the Commission. A summary of any action taken by the Executive Committee shall be reported at the next regular meeting of the Commission. The Executive Committee shall have authority to act for the Commission between its business meetings. It may not take any action that conflicts with resolutions or acts of the Commission or these by-laws. It shall have general supervision of the affairs of the Commission and may prepare recommendations for its review and action.
- The Executive Committee shall provide direction to the Executive Assistant in the conduct of the affairs of the Commission when required.
- The Executive Committee shall determine it own dates, times and places for meeting. Meetings of the Executive Committee may be called by the Chair; upon written request of three (3) of its members; or the Executive Director as needed.
The Commission may establish standing committees as necessary for carrying out its business. The standing committees, other than the Executive Committee, are as follows and include but are not limited to the following responsibilities.
- Nominations and Elections Committee
This committee will oversee the preparations for elections, conduct elections, monitor elections, create guide lines for determining eligibility of electors and candidates, and will rule on petitions of verification of Indian identity. The committee will submit its guidelines for determining Indian identity to the Commission for approval. The committee will accept nominations, and make and monitor rules and procedures for nominations. The chair person shall appoint the chair and members of the Nominations and Elections Committee. The nominated members of the Chairperson must be ratified by the Commission. Members shall serve until expiration of their term of office.
- Mayor’s Committee
The Mayor’s Committee shall consist of all five Mayor appointed Commission members. This committee will develop friendly relations and contacts with the Mayor’s office and city government officers and agencies in order to promote the coordination, long term, and fund raising goals of the Commission. All planned meetings with the Mayor’s office or city officials will be coordinated with the Executive Committee. The chairperson will appoint the Mayor’s Committee Chair, who serves only after the Commission ratifies the appointment. The committee will make a report at each Commission meeting.
- County Committee
The County Committee shall consist of all five County appointed Commission members. This committee will develop friendly relations and contacts with the County Board of Supervisor’s’ office and County government officers and agencies in order to promote the coordination, long term, and fund raising goals of the Commission. All planned meetings with County Supervisors and officials will be coordinated with the Executive Committee. The chairperson will appoint the County Committee Chair, who serves only after the Commission ratifies the appointment. The committee will make a report at each Commission meeting.
AD HOC COMMITTEES
The Commission may establish ad hoc committees at its discretion, and define their area of operation and concern. The Commission shall establish the purpose and, if applicable, its length of service. As provided by ordinance, such committees may be composed of persons not holding membership on the Commission, except that the chairperson of each committee shall be a Commission member.
XIII. SELF-GOVERNANCE BOARD
This Board is established to administer public/private funds, particularly those funds that have Indian self-governance requirements. This Board will not compete for funding with any non-profit American Indian community based organization providing services in the County of Los Angeles.
The Board will be composed of the following members of the Commission: A. Each of the five (5) Community Elected Commissioners: and B. One Board of Supervisor appointed Commissioner and one City of Los Angeles appointed Commissioner. Both of these members shall be selected by a majority vote of the Commission; and Commission Chairperson shall serve as ex officio member of this Board.
The term of Board membership for the community elected and appointed Commissioners will coincide with their term on the Commission.
XIV. ANNUAL REPORT
To render to the Board of Supervisors, the Mayor, the City Council, and American Indian Community at least once each fiscal year a report of its activities.
Regular monthly meetings shall be held on the third Tuesday of each month at such place and time as determined by the Commission, except that the Commission may change the date of the meeting at its discretion as long as at least one regular meeting is held each month. Meetings shall be scheduled at a time suitable to accommodate a regular work schedule in private industry (Monday-Friday) and regular work hours (8:00 AM to 5:00 PM), so as not to be in conflict with Commission meetings.
It shall be the duty of all Commission members to attend all meetings of the Commission. If a member of the Commission shall fail to attend any three (3) regular meetings without good cause during the previous calendar year such absences shall be reported to the appointing authority by the Executive Committee, and such absences may be cause for the appointing authority to remove said member, or in the case of elected members by the Commission. The successor may be appointed by the same authority as was his predecessor to fill out the balance of the term.
If a member of the Commission shall fail to attend two (2) regular meetings, without good cause during the calendar year, such member shall be placed on notice that two (2) regular meetings have been missed.
Meetings of the Commission shall be governed by the provisions of Chapter 9 of the California Government Code, also known as Ralph M. Brown Act, commencing at Sec. 54950 of Part I. Division 2. Title 5. All meetings of the Commission shall be open and public, and all persons shall be permitted to attend any meeting and receive notice of such meetings as provided in the Act.
The Commission shall provide by resolution for the agenda, date, time and place of each regular meeting. Adequate notice in English of each regular Commission meeting shall be given to the public at least seven (7) days in advance of the meeting.
Persons who are not members of the Commission may attend Commission and Commission committee meetings and will be offered a reasonable opportunity to be heard whether or not on the agenda.
Special meetings may be called by the Chair or upon the request of at least ten (10) Commission members to the Chair. In addition, the Executive Director may call a special meeting when necessary. Whenever possible, written notice together with the agenda for that meeting shall be mailed or delivered to each Commission member so as to be received five (5) days in advance. No other business than that on the agenda may be conducted at a special meeting.
Written minutes shall be kept for each meeting of the Commission and its committees.
A copy of all minutes minutes shall be forwarded to all Commission members when practicable, at least seven (7) days prior to the next regular meeting. The minutes shall be available for inspection. Translation shall be made available upon request.
Fifty percent plus one (50% +1) of the non-vacant seats on the Commission shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. An official Commission meeting may not take place until this quorum is met. The approval of a majority of those present is required to pass any resolution or transact any business. If at any time the quorum is destroyed, official actions of the Commission can not be made. These provisions apply to any committee or other group appointed by the Commission to assist in the conduct of its business.
XVII. EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT
The Executive Assistant of the Commission shall serve as head of the Commission staff. Subject to the supervision of the Chairperson and pursuant to appropriate Civil Service provisions of the Los Angeles County Charter, the Executive Assistant of the Commission is responsible, as the administration head of the Commission state, for implementing and executing the policy and program of the Commission.
There shall be no proxy voting.
These rules may be amended by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Commission members. Notice of intention to amend the rules and copies of the proposed amendment must be sent to the members of the Commission twenty-one (21) days in advance of the date set for consideration of each amendment.
XX. PROCEDURAL RULES
Commission meetings shall be conducted by the abridged Robert’s Rules of Order. The Chair shall appoint a parliamentarian.
No member of the Commission shall make any commitment or promises whatsoever of financial or moral assistance by the County of Los Angeles or the Commission, unless first approved by the Commission nor shall any member of the Commission speak or act in the name of the Commission, unless specifically authorized by resolution of the Commission to do so. Any act on the part of a Commission member which would give the impression of a lack of unanimity of purpose, or of integrity on the part of the Commission or any member thereof shall be considered an unethical act, except as otherwise indicated herein. No member of the Commission shall divulge confidential information of the Commission to anyone until the minutes of the Commission containing such subject matters are approved. Commissioners shall comply will all requirements of the Conflict of Interest Laws in California and the County of Los Angeles.