Parliamentary Procedure

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Who is Robert Rules?. Thomas Jefferson, then Vice-President, created the Manual of Parliamentary Practice in 1801It was immediately adopted by the House and SenateCreated so meetings can be run in a civilized

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Parliamentary Procedure

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1. Parliamentary Procedure “On second thought, operator, cancel the call to the riot squad and send over a parliamentarian.”

2. Who is Robert Rules? Thomas Jefferson, then Vice-President, created the Manual of Parliamentary Practice in 1801 It was immediately adopted by the House and Senate Created so meetings can be run in a civilized & courteous manner Gave all participants the opportunity to express their opinion so a consensus can be formed General Henry M. Robert published Robert’s Rules of Order in 1876

3. All Members are Equal and Their Rights are Equal Parliamentary procedure offers democratic rule, flexibility, protection of rights, and a fair hearing for everyone Is a set of rules for conduct at meetings Allows everyone to be heard & make decisions Enables you to expedite the flow of business

4. Membership is the Backbone of the Chapter The Membership administers the affairs of the Chapter Members’ rights are: To attend meetings To make motions & speak in debate To nominate To vote To hold office Majority rules The Officers carry out the members’ wishes

5. Four Types of Motions A Snapshot Main Subsidiary Privilege Incidental

6. Main Motions Are generally used to present new business Amendments to bylaws are main motions Cannot be made when another motion is before the assembly Yield to privileged, subsidiary & incidental motions EXAMPLE: “I move that we pay the California Division Meeting registration for our Delegate.”

7. Subsidiary Motions Change or affect how the main motion is handled before it has been decided Are voted on BEFORE the main motion EXAMPLE: “I move that the question before the membership be amended by inserting—and lodging fees.”

8. Other Motions Privileged and Incidental Motions do not require the eight steps usually needed to make a motion Privileged motions are of immediate importance and take precedence over any main motion Incidental motions do not relate directly to the substance of the pending motion but to the method of transacting the business of the motion

9. Privileged Motion Are urgent, about special, or important matters NOT relating to pending business A second is not required, may not be amended and do not require a vote. Two types are: Question of Privilege: If you can’t see or hear the meeting, you may stop the meeting and have the problem corrected. Or room is too hot/cold/noisy. Call for the Orders of the Day: Used to move discussion to the item scheduled for that particular time on the agenda. “I move that we recess to count ballots.”

10. Incidental Motions Are questions of procedure that arise out of other motions Must be considered BEFORE the other motion Do not require that you be recognized Do not require a second Cannot be amended or debated

11. Incidental Motions These Incidental motions do not require a vote: Point of Order: If someone isn’t following Robert’s Rules, you can state “Point of Order” and explain your point; the Chair then rules on your point. Point of Information: Used to stop action to call for clarification of the process or consequences of the debate. Division of Assembly: Used to request a vote to be retaken in another manner if there is any doubt about the vote. This Incidental motion requires a 2/3 vote: Object to Consideration: This motion is made to kill a sensitive or embarrassing motion before it is discussed by the assembly. EXAMPLE: “I move that we set aside the bylaws so that all chapter members are eligible for nomination to the board of directors.” 

12. “Perfecting a Motion” a.k.a. Amending a Motion Motions are amended to change the wording to make it make more acceptable before taking final action There are 3 ways to change the wording of a motion, to make it more acceptable before taking final action To add words or phrases To strike out words or phrases To substitute by striking out & inserting; or substitute an entire motion or paragraph

13. “Perfecting a Motion” a.k.a. Amending a Motion Modifications can be made Between the time a motion is made and before the Chair states the motion After the Chair has stated the motion Before the motion is voted upon The membership then votes on only the amended portion; if that passes, then you return to the original motion AS AMENDED to vote on in its entirety If the amended portion fails, then the membership returns to vote on the motion as it was originally worded

14. How Do I Present My Motion? - In 8 Easy Steps - Raise your hand (or rise) and address the Chair Receive recognition from the Chair Make the motion (I move that/to…) Requires a second A motion must be seconded to bring it up for discussion. Seconding a motion does not mean you agree with it. The Chair must hear a second or the motion is lost.

15. How Do I Present My Motion? - In 8 Easy Steps - Chair restates the motion “It has been moved and seconded that…” Discussion Membership to be recognized by Chair No member shall speak twice to a motion until all members who want to speak to the motion have been heard Chair puts the motion to vote Voice, raise hand, stand, ballot Chair announces result of vote

16. Calling the meeting to order is the first item of business A motion to accept a report should not be made because there is no need to accept a report The President can assume a motion; for example, “If no objection the minutes are approved as read/presented/corrected.” The Treasurer’s report is not approved—it is filed All Members Should Know

17. All Members Should Know A recess is called for a meeting to cease temporarily (for a speaker, entertainment, meal, etc.) and then reconvenes to conduct remaining business When there is a request for information you do not need a second Renewing a motion If a motion is defeated it usually cannot be brought up again (unless it is amended) at that meeting. However, the original motion can be brought up again at another meeting.

18. All Members Should Know Before a motion is stated by the Chair, it may be withdrawn or modified by the maker After a motion is stated by the Chair, it may be withdrawn by a majority vote of the assembly To stop debate and force a vote, a member should obtain the floor and say “I move the previous question. This requires a second and 2/3 vote A tie vote is a lost vote The phrase “so moved” is vague so always fully state the motion to avoid confusion

19. Parliamentary Procedures 101 Cliff Notes: How Do I Present My Motion?

20. References This is an introduction to parliamentary procedure. If you are interested in finding out more: www.calweb.com/~laredo/parlpr2c.htm Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised, 10th Edition Webster’s New World, Roberts Rules of Order, Simplified and Applied Robert’s Rules In Plain English, Doris P. Zimmerman The National Association of Parliamentarians The American Institute of Parliamentarians A special thank you to Sharon Weber for allowing excerpts of her Parliamentary Procedures column from Citrus Valley Chapter’s Insight newsletter to be used in this presentation

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