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KIC Tribal Council Voting Procedures
by Stephanie Rainwater-Sande


November 27, 2004

Over the past year, the KIC Tribal Council has been challenged with several very divisive issues. When these issues have come up for vote of the Council, the voting procedures allow for several courses of action: a voice vote is the most common, but roll-call and ballot votes are also allowed at the discretion of the President or a Council member. The governance KIC Ordinance is very specific regarding the President's role in these procedures, namely, that the President only votes in the case of a tie or if there is "An" (anonymous) ballot vote.

You might ask the question: "Does this give an advantage to one side of a split Council?" The answer is both "yes" and "no." There are eight members of the Council including the President. Normally, that allows a split vote to be 3-4, or 2-5 and so on. The practice at KIC has been that a ballot vote is only asked for when there is a matter of critical importance to the Tribe, and thankfully, these times have been few and far between.

KIC has now had a critical financial matter that rose to the level of requiring a ballot vote. The way our Tribe decides these matters is with the balance of power moving in favor of the President, with that position voting as a Council member and then breaking the tie with another vote. It may seem to some that this is too much authority for the President to wield, but please consider that most governments have a mechanism for presidential veto when critical matters arise. KIC, however, does not vest this power in the President. Given this fact, the voting advantage given the President is slight, at this particular time for the KIC Council it is needed to do business. I rarely used this method of voting I preferred the council to be ethical, responsible in their voting. However, that has not been the case this year and I have had to exercise this allowed authority for the sake of the tribe, so the mission of the tribe can carry on instead of power and control issues. This has been a yearlong election campaign for some of the KIC Tribal Council members; we should put this energy in to doing actual KIC business.

I hope this sheds some light to all KIC members on the voting process with the KIC Tribal Council. For more information please review the KIC Constitution and Ordinance 7.


Stephanie Rainwater-Sande
KIC Tribal Council President
Ketchikan, AK - USA



Related documents:

pdf KIC Constitution and Ordinances



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