Background: The Board of Director members have two-year term limits. Vacancies for positions on the Board of Directors shall be filled in the following manner: The Board shall establish nomination procedures each year not later than the September-October issue of the newsletter for any position which is vacant or whose holder’s term will expire that year. The ballot then shall be included in the November-December issue of the newsletter. Completed ballots shall be returned within 45 days of the date of the mailing of the newsletter.
What happened: The December 2006 election didn’t start until May 2007. So, starting in January 2007, a small group of concerning UMCA members pressured UMCA to get moving with the election. (UMCA did say they were delaying the elections because of the RAAM sale pending, which was a move not all the UMCA Board of Director members knew about until about November 22nd after they were lied about it in October. November 22nd was a date AFTER the September-October magazine was supposed to be finished.)
Reference: First public urgent to start the election.
The 2006 election spanned six months, from the start of “pressuring to hold the election” to the deadline date of mailing ballots. It should normally extend four months, per the Bylaws. Yes, part of this was because of the magazine not being ready on time, plus the slow bulk mail delivery during the first three months of 2007. However, it doesn't explain reasons for the UMCA's long delay (between August 2006 to December 2006) for getting the election process going. Based on the timeline, if members were not publicly pushing for the UMCA to get started with the election, the 2006 election may not have been concluded until September 2007.
Out of fairness to the UMCA, the Managing Director did attempt to help the situation. Prior to UMCA member's urging to proceed with the election, he posted two magazines on the website. The candidate statement deadline was postponed, so candidates would have a chance to submit their statements. Even the last-minute “illegal” resister to vote deadline was postponed from two weeks to four weeks from the date of announcement. Lastly, the Managing Director sent out the magazines containing the ballots through first-class US mail costing the UMCA over $2000. The Managing Director could have packed only the election material and the ballot in an envelope and mailed it first class non-profit status, costing about $300-$400, then send the magazine through normal bulk mail. This would have saved the UMCA a considerable amount of money, plus provided a larger turnout of voters in the election. Why was the ballot sent in the magazine, buried on page 27? We can only speculate that if he would have done a special mailing of the ballot, the voter turnout would have been larger, thus less possibility of controlling the voting population of the UMCA, less possibility of electing his six pre-selected candidates in the election.
Meanwhile, seven directors on the UMCA Board were serving illegally for six months (six to be elected by UMCA members and one to be elected by RAAM, LLC Inc.)