The city of Chandor (and by extension, the empire) is governed by the Senate, a body of approximately 100 Senators elected by qualified electors known as Citizens of Jade. The exact number of Senators depends on how many active Citizens of Jade there are at the most recent census. The census is conducted every six years, with an election for one third of the senators held every two years.
Voting in Chandor Edit
Citizens of Jade are additionally the only eligible electors in smaller, local elections for Town Mayor or other local leaders. Individual towns and regional districts have different requirements for holding office.
To qualify as a Citizen of Jade, a natural born citizen who is at least 17 years old must pay the Senate coin equal to approximately seven times the annual earnings of a labourer. The citizen then receives a small totem of jade with their voter number carved down the side. The totem can be passed to another citizen, typically a family member, but each citizen may have only one totem. The citizen must show their Jade at every election to be able to cast a vote.
Occasionally, the Senate will call for a Jade Tax where all Citizens of Jade must provide additional funds to the Senate Treasury or have their totem destroyed. These conditions have ensured that only fairly wealthy merchants, craftsman and nobles have a political voice in Chandor.
To be eligible for a Senate seat, a citizen of Chandor must be natural born and have been a Citizen of Jade for at least 10 years. The potential Senator must demonstrate they are able to pay for their seat, a cost equivalent to five times the average annual income of a skilled craftsman. If elected they will serve a term of six years.
Proceedings of the Senate Edit
The Senators elect a Dictator from their own ranks who is in charge of moderating proceedings in the Senate chamber. The Dictator remains in their office for the entirety of that Senate session. There are usually three Senate sessions per year, one in winter, one in summer and a longer session in spring. However emergency sessions can be called during times of crisis.
Aside from the office of dictator, little is consistent between Senate sessions. Committees are formed and broken, and debate can sometimes occur off the Senate floor. The Senate is supported in their efforts by The Advisory, a public body of civil servants. There is no monetary requirement to serve in The Advisory, however citizens must be natural born or have at least one natural born parent.