ULCT Proposed Constitutional Changes
Date: April 4, 2018
To: ULCT membership
From: Cameron Diehl, Executive Director
RE: ULCT Constitution Amendments for the Midyear Conference
A) Context for the proposed constitutional amendments
The Utah League of Cities and Towns (ULCT) is governed by a Board of Directors according to the ULCT Constitution and bylaws. The Constitution was drafted in 1980 with a handful of minor amendments since that time. The ULCT membership must approve and ratify constitutional amendments and the Board of Directors must approve bylaw changes. When I became the Executive Director, I recommended that the Board of Directors organize a Constitution Review Committee of city leaders.
Utah has changed dramatically since 1980, and the ULCT structure and organizational documents should modernize. Utah’s population has grown 112% since 1980 from 1,461,037 to 3,098,761 and the number of Utah’s cities and towns has increased by 14%. Thus, the ULCT membership has changed and increased since 1980 and the ULCT Constitution should reflect those changes.
B) Constitution Review Committee
The Executive Board—the ULCT President, 1st Vice President, 2nd Vice President, and Immediate Past President—worked closely with me and ULCT staff to recruit participants on the Constitution Review Committee. We sought to include representation from all 8 board regions, include current and former Board members and senior city staff members with institutional knowledge of ULCT, and include communities of all sizes. The committee met twice in person and once electronically to review the constitution and prepare recommendations for the consideration of the Board of Directors and the ULCT membership. ULCT 2nd Vice President and Spanish Fork Council Member Mike Mendenhall chaired the committee and elected officials made up the majority of the membership. The committee presented its recommendations to the Board of Directors on February 12, 2018. The Board approved the direction of the recommendations and requested that ULCT staff prepare amendments for the Midyear Conference. Thanks to the following members of the committee for their time, expertise, and input:
Elected officials (10) :
Bountiful Council Member (ULCT President) Beth Holbrook
Kaysville former Mayor Steve Hiatt (ULCT Immediate Past President)
Midvale former Mayor JoAnn Seghini
Moab former Mayor Dave Sakrison
Naples Mayor Dean Baker
North Logan Council Member Damon Cann
Perry former Mayor Karen Cronin
Sandy Council Member Steve Fairbanks (ULCT Past President)
Spanish Fork Council Member (ULCT 2nd Vice President) Mike Mendenhall
West Valley Council Member Don Christensen
Appointed officials (7) :
Ivins Finance Director Wally Ritchie
Ogden Chief Administrative Officer Mark Johnson
Orem City Manager Jamie Davidson
Provo Chief Administrative Officer Wayne Parker
Richfield City Manager Matt Creamer
Salt Lake City Mayor’s representative Jennifer Seelig
South Ogden City Manager Matt Dixon
ULCT staff (non-voting) :
C) Three step process for amending the constitution and your participation
First, the proposed amendment must be prepared in writing and submitted to the Board of Directors. Second, the ULCT membership must consider the amendment at the Annual Convention or in a special meeting. If the amendment is proposed for consideration at a special meeting—and the Midyear Conference qualifies as a special meeting—then the Board must review the amendment on or before the first day of the meeting. The Board of Directors will consider the proposed amendments at their April 25, 2018 meeting prior to the beginning of the Midyear Conference.
Third, the ULCT membership must provide a two-thirds majority vote according to the weighted vote process outlined in Article X Section 1 to amend the constitution. You will have the opportunity to vote on the amendments on Friday, April 27 at the Midyear Conference in St. George.
ULCT requests that you provide feedback to us about the amendments by Wednesday, April 18 at 5:00 pm. You can send your questions and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. ULCT staff will respond to your questions and comments and then we will share them with the Board of Directors prior to their April 25 meeting.
D) Brief explanation of the proposed constitutional amendments
- Article I: no amendments
- Article II: Section 1(a) deletes specific terminology and Section 1(c) adds legislative advocacy language to the Objects and Purpose of the organization.
- Article III: Section 1 clarifies that only a city or town may be a voting member of ULCT. The amendments delete Section 2 Affiliate Members and Section 3 Cooperating Members. Instead, any other similar entities—metro townships in Salt Lake County, other political subdivisions, etc.—that want to participate as non-voting members of ULCT are consolidated in the category of Associate Members.
- Article IV: The amendments will expand the membership of the Board of Directors from 16 to 21, designate two spots for members from cities of the first (100,000+ population) and second class (65,000+ population), and reserve one spot for a representative from the Utah City Management Association. Article IV also includes several proposed technical amendments.
- Membership and board size:
Since 1980, the ULCT membership has grown by 14% while the Board size has not grown accordingly. In 1980, people residing within the 11 incorporated municipalities of Salt Lake County consisted of 50.2% of the county’s total population. In 2017, people residing within the 17 incorporated municipalities consist of 93% of the county’s total population. Meanwhile, Utah’s population has grown 112% since 1980 from 1,461,037 to 3,098,761. Increasing the board size reflects Utah’s growth in population and quantify of municipalities.
- Designated spots:
The proposed amendments would maintain the geographic diversity of the board, make three specific additions, and provide for two more at-large spots. Over the last few months, ULCT reached out to municipal leagues around the nation and 21 responded. Of those 21, 17 leagues have voting board positions for staff members and seven have designated spots for large cities.
Per the amendments, the Board would have one spot in the Executive Board reserved for a representative from the Utah City Management Association and two spots reserved for cities of the first or second class. In 1980, Utah had only one city of the first class (Salt Lake City). In 2018, Utah has five cities of the first class (Salt Lake City, West Valley, Provo, West Jordan, Sandy) with several cities projected to become cities of the first class in the decades to come. In 1980, Utah had only two cities of the second class (West Valley when it incorporated that year and Ogden). In 2018, Utah has six cities of the second class and that number is projected to grow. Historically, the Board designated one spot for a representative from a town and that designation will continue.
- Finally, compliance with the current 50% threshold is impossible. The 2016-2017 Board reflected 16% of Utah’s population and there is no mathematical way for the population of Utah’s largest cities in each of the eight geographic areas to add up to the 50% threshold. That language was an attempt to ensure that large cities had representation on the board and the proposed amendments accomplish that intent in a cleaner and more manageable manner.
- Membership and board size:
- Article V: Technical change
- Article VI: Technical changes
- Article VII: Technical change
- Article VIII: Technical change
- Article IX: Technical change
- Article X: Technical change
- Article XI: Technical change
- Article XII: Technical change
- Article XIII: None
E) Effective date
The effective date will be a two-step process. First, the membership at the Midyear Conference in St. George will vote on the proposed amendments and they must receive approval from two-thirds of the attendees according to Article X Section 1. Second, the amendments will become effective on September 14, 2018 at the Annual Convention. At Annual, the Board will expand from 16 to 21 members but there is still work to be done to update the bylaws so that they are consistent with the constitution. The delayed effective date will provide sufficient time for the Board of Directors and ULCT staff to make the necessary bylaw updates and prepare for the increased board size.
Thank you for your support and participation in ULCT. For additional information, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please send your questions and feedback about the amendments to me or to email@example.com by Wednesday, April 18 at 5:00 pm. I look forward to seeing you in sunny St. George.