Willie Watson

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About Willie Watson

  1. Our assembly meeting was adjourned due to the absence of a quorum. Written committee reports were emailed to the Secretary prior to the meeting and our next regular assembly meeting is six months from now. What happens to the Written Committee Reports (none have recommendations to be voted on): 1) Can they still be distributed via email to the assembly members , 2)Do they have to be resubmitted for the next regular meeting, 3) Is there some other disposition of these committee reports Thanks
  2. I would like some of you to weigh in (i.e., give your opinion) on a situation that occurred in my organization. My local unit is an affiliate unit of a parent body. The parent body (ABC) is incorporated. The ABC Corporation has adopted RONR as its parliamentary authority. Here is the exact wording used in the parent body’s bylaws: Section 13: Parliamentary Authority The rules contained in the most current edition of Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, shall govern the proceedings of ABC in all cases to which they apply and are not inconsistent with these bylaws and any special rules the Corporation may adopt or to which it is subject. The ABC Corporation is multi-national in scope and has an assembly that meets bi-annually. The venues for upcoming meetings are decided in the assembly meeting. My local unit has two members (that the local unit elects) that are part of the parent assembly. The Bylaws of the parent body allow all non-assembly members of the ABC Corporation to vote on the election of officers and amendments to the ABC Corporations bylaws (via a postal-mail ballot). All other decisions (according to the parent body bylaws themselves) are to be made by the parent assembly with the caveat that the Executive Committee (EC) may act on behalf of the assembly between the assembly’s bi-annual meetings. No other absentee voting has been authorized in the ABC Corporation’s Bylaws with the two exceptions noted above and no preferential voting has been authorized in the ABC bylaws at all. At the last assembly meeting, the ABC Corporation found itself without a quorum (could conduct no business) and had to adjourn without deciding a venue for its next meeting. Following adjournment, ABC’s Executive Committee (EC) had a meeting and I assume (I haven’t see the minutes) decided to defer the decision on the venue to the affiliate units. The Corresponding Secretary sent a ballot to each affiliate unit and stated that each unit would have one vote on the upcoming venue. The ballot asked each unit to mark their first and second choice for the venue. Here are my two primary questions: Does the ABC’s Executive Committee have the power to authorize absentee voting of affiliate units on the selection of the venue (or preferential voting for that matter) without authorization in the ABC Corporation Bylaws. Do the Executive Committee have to make the decision themselves within the confines of a properly called EC meeting. In that same vein, my unit has a set of local bylaws that also adopted RONR as its parliamentary authority (our local bylaws do not authorize absentee or preferential voting anywhere). However, one member of the parent body Executive Committee who happens to be a member of my affiliate unit (they are not the President or Secretary in my unit) sent the ballot out via e-mail to members of the local unit and asked each member to mark their first and second choice on the ballot for selection of the venue. What should be done with those ballots? I assume that they cannot be counted and sent in as the official decision of my unit because we have had no meeting to take a vote.
  3. Below is a direct quote from the bylaws ( and the word quorum is not mentioned anywhere else in our bylaws, I did a word check). Two of the Directors on the Board have not yet been replaced. Section 8.7 Quorum At least one-third (1/3) of the Board of Directors must be present to constitute a quorum for the conduct of business.
  4. We have two vacancies on our Board that have yet to be filled. Where in RONR does it state how to handle a vacancy in computing the quorum (do we count the vacancies or are they excluded in computing the quorum)? Thanks!
  5. Okay, thanks for your answer! But now I am having trouble understanding what sense did it make for the bylaws to create the assembly in the first place! The reason I say this is the EC can perform a preemptive strike on all business by approving it before it gets to the assembly. This leaves the assembly with only the choice of a 2/3 vote to rescind the EC’s decision. What should happen is that the EC should pass all business that does not have to be decided between assembly meetings to the assembly. It should act only on that business that must be decided before the next assembly meeting.
  6. Our bylaws say nothing about whether the business is urgent.
  7. Our Executive Council (EC) conducted a teleconference meeting this week without any authorization in the bylaws (they simply decided to have a meeting because they could not get together physically). They made a number of decisions which they are currently acting on. I am a member of the parent assembly (i.e., the superior body) but I am not a member of the EC. Could you give your opinion on how this should be handled.
  8. Well said and thank you!
  9. Can one of you guys then explain why if we suspend the rules and adopt the proposed standing rule by a 2/3 vote, then why something greater than a 2/3 vote is not required to rescind it later. I am reading the last paragraph in RONR, p. 1i and here is the quote “Another important principle is that, as a protection against instability—arising, for example, from such factors as slight variations in attendance—the requirements for changing a previous action are greater than those for taking the action in the first place. “
  10. An interesting thing happened at our regularly scheduled meeting last month that I would like to have a comment on. Our program Committee introduced a main motion during its committee report. The motion was a purposed standing rule which had application only outside of our meetings and could possibly inflame passions. The committee also stated that the proposed standing rule was to be adopted by a 2/3 vote. I then raised a point of order, primarily that a standing rule according to RONR was to be adopted by only a majority vote (with a few exceptions noted therein that the proposed standing rule did not quality for). My point of order was sustained by the chair. So I have a three part question: (1) In your opinion was the decision to sustain my point of order correct, 2) could some member have moved to suspend the rules so that a 2/3 vote adopted the proposed standing rule, and 3)If the proposed standing rule was adopted by a 2/3 vote and we wanted to rescind it next year, then what would be the vote needed to rescind it? Thank you very much for your patience and input!
  11. Our organization is paying for space at a hotel for one of our gaming events. The President has scheduled all committees to have committee meetings at specified times in the hotel space provided. The President has also invited all members of the organization to attend at the specified time: 1) Does this infringe upon the right of the committee chair to call committee meetings, and 2) Since there is little possibility that any committee will have a quorum, is it proper to just have informal discussion of issues and then call a committee meeting to decide what if anything to put in the committee report. Thank you!
  12. We have never had a parliamentarian in our organization. If the presiding officer wants to appoint a parliamentarian does that require approval and if so from whom? Can the President just say I am going to appoint John Doe as the parliamentarian for the meeting (the bylaws are silent on this issue and we have adopted RONR in our bylaws). Thanks!
  13. In the Standing Committee section of our bylaws it lists fifteen (15) Standing Committees by name. The function of seven of the Standing Committees is written in the bylaws. However, the other eight are just named and their function is not described. There are no standing rules adopted by the organization that describe the function/duties of the other eight Standing Committees. What is the proper procedure for establishing their function? Better still, do they even have a function without instruction somewhere describing their responsibilities? We have adopted via our bylaws, RONR as our parliamentary authority.
  14. Since the chair took action that was clearly in violation of the bylaws, why is it now too late to raise a point of order (RONR p. 251, l. 25)? Or was his action not in violation of the Bylaws?
  15. I was following this conversation! I thought I joined this forum many months ago (slightly less than a year) because I ask frequent questions. Mr. Huynh asked a question, that I have been trying to get an answer for! How do I respond in the same thread (be specific)?