Voting bylaws under review

More than 50 people attended the Oct. 1 Happy Village vote.

A recurring issue surfaced again in the recent Happy Village debate: EVA membership votes require EVA membership. What's wrong with that?

In the case of Happy Village zoning, not all neighbors at the Oct. 1 vote were members. That shouldn't be an issue—membership is cheap—but for a twist in EVA bylaws: Voters must have three months' membership in the group.

This requirement was added in 2011 after a contentious zoning vote. The concern was that visitors with an interest in the outcome would join just to tip the balance.

In practice, the residency requirement has proven reasonable but the waiting period hard to administer. As a result, EVA officers on Oct. 8 recommended amending the voting section of EVA bylaws, which now reads this way:

Only members in good standing over 16 years of age who reside or own property in the area defined in Article II and who have been members for a minimum of three months are eligible to vote. An individual or a senior membership entitles the holder to one vote. In a family membership each family member of voting age is entitled to vote, however, the voting capacity of a family membership cannot exceed three votes. An institutional membership entitles a designated person to one vote. No person may cast more than one vote.

An amended bylaw would read as follows:

Only members in good standing over 16 years of age who reside or own property in the area defined in Article II are eligible to vote. An individual or a senior membership entitles the holder to one vote. In a family membership each family member of voting age is entitled to vote, however, the voting capacity of a family membership cannot exceed three votes. An institutional membership entitles a designated person to one vote. No person may cast more than one vote.

The change would be subject to a vote as early as Dec. 3.

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