VABiker

Distribution of Proposed Budget Prior to Vote

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I belong to a Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). It is a 501(c)(3) with about 100 members. The bylaws state:

Section 2. A Finance Committee consisting of the Treasurer and four members to be appointed by the Regent shall consider requests for funds, plan a proposed budget to be approved at the September meeting and recommend to the Chapter such expenditures as the Committee shall deem expedient.

ARTICLE XI. Parliamentary Authority.
The rules contained in the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the chapter in all cases to which they are not inconsistent with the bylaws, special rules of order, standing rules or any rulings of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, or any special rules of order of the Virginia Daughters of the American Revolution, or of this chapter.

At the first meeting last year the Treasurer made a motion to approve the budget. Members were not given a copy of the budget. Changes were not shown. There was no discussion. It was just approved.

This year, the Regent (President) wants to follow the same procedure. She has told me: "We have no requirement to distribute the budget in advance and we will not be doing so at this time." 

This seems wrong, to me, since you can't consider and approve something competently if you have not seen it. Is the Regent (President) correct?

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1.  While often useful, there is no requirement that the budget before a meeting.

2,  The chair is required to state the question, i.e. read the entire motion (p. 27).

3.  Any member has a right to have the motion that is placed before the assembly, read (p. 229, ll. 3-18).

4.  If no one objects, the chair could distribute copies, and waive the reading.  This is violation of RONR, but the rule could be suspended.

5.  I'm SAR.  :)

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43 minutes ago, J. J. said:

1.  While often useful, there is no requirement that the budget before a meeting.

2,  The chair is required to state the question, i.e. read the entire motion (p. 27).

3.  Any member has a right to have the motion that is placed before the assembly (p. 229, ll. 3-18).

4.  If no one objects, the chair could distribute copies, and waive the reading.  This is violation of RONR, but the rule could be suspended.

5.  I'm SAR.  :)

JJ, care to try again? I think you left a few words out here and there. <_<

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7 minutes ago, Richard Brown said:

JJ, care to try again? I think you left a few words out here and there. <_<

I only found one

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Neither the president nor the treasurer have the right to determine whether copies of the budget (or anything else) get distributed. The membership (or the assembly) has the final say on whether copies get distributed. There are several ways of accomplishing that. For example, someone can move to postpone consideration of the budget until such time as copies are distributed to the members. 

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2 minutes ago, Richard Brown said:

Neither the president nor the treasurer have the right to determine whether copies of the budget (or anything else) get distributed. The membership (or the assembly) has the final say on whether copies get distributed. There are several ways of accomplishing that. For example, someone can move to postpone consideration of the budget until such time as copies are distributed to the members. 

Will they need to set up an adjourned meeting before postponing the matter since their bylaw says it's to be approved at the September meeting?

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1 hour ago, George Mervosh said:

Will they need to set up an adjourned meeting before postponing the matter since their bylaw says it's to be approved at the September meeting?

Not if they distribute copies during a recess. Otherwise, it would be proper to set an adjourned meeting. But I wouldn't say they'd have to wait an entire year if they neglect to do so. That would be the greater of two evils.

This whole idea of being asked to approve something (a spending plan, no less!) sight-unseen strikes me as not only absurd, but as a highly suspicious carte-blanche maneuver.

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I think Mr. Brown was suggesting they postpone the motion to adopt the budget until their next meeting, assuming it's held within a quarterly time interval.  But if it's just a postponement until later in the same meeting, of course no adjourned meeting is necessary.

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On 9/13/2017 at 9:32 AM, Richard Brown said:

Neither the president nor the treasurer have the right to determine whether copies of the budget (or anything else) get distributed. The membership (or the assembly) has the final say on whether copies get distributed. There are several ways of accomplishing that. For example, someone can move to postpone consideration of the budget until such time as copies are distributed to the members. 

 

On 9/13/2017 at 9:35 AM, George Mervosh said:

Will they need to set up an adjourned meeting before postponing the matter since their bylaw says it's to be approved at the September meeting?

No, they will not necessarily need to set up an adjourned meeting before postponing the approval of the budget.  Depending on what they do, it might be required, but it isn't necessarily required.  Here are some of their options, only one of which requires setting up an adjourned meeting:

1.  Postpone the approval until later in the same meeting when the treasurer distributes copies of the budget.

2. Adopt a motion to lay the matter on the table until such time as the treasurer distributes copies of the budget.

3. Take a recess to allow the members to review whatever copies of the budget are available at the moment or to allow someone to run out and make copies.

4.  Take up the consideration of the adoption of the budget and then, once the motion to approve the budget is pending, adopt a motion to postpone the matter until the next meeting, provided it is within a quarterly time interval.  This does not require setting up an adjourned meeting.  RONR, page 95 lines 4 - 12 and page 185 lines 7 - 25.

5.  Set an adjourned meeting by using the motion to fix the time to which to adjourn and then postpone the approval of the budget to the adjourned meeting.  This is the only one of these five options which necessarily requires setting up an adjourned meeting. RONR, page 185, lines 7-18.

There may well be other options for not approving the budget until the members receive a copy of it.

Note:  Some posters made reference to this being the annual meeting and to the propriety of postponing the matter to the next annual meeting.  I see nothing in the original post that says this is an annual meeting, although it might well be so.  On the other hand, there is a reference to the adoption of the budget being done at the first meeting last year, indicating that perhaps the budget is adopted by the new board at its first meeting after the annual meeting.  Additionally, there is nothing to indicate that this assembly meets only annually. 

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23 hours ago, Richard Brown said:

 

 

2. Adopt a motion to lay the matter on the table until such time as the treasurer distributes copies of the budget.

I think you might mean Postpone.  :)

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23 hours ago, Daniel H. Honemann said:

I'm not particularly fond of option 2.  :)

I'm not either, and actually deleted it and then typed it again. I believe it is still an option available to the assembly, especially if the assembly believes there is other pressing business which the assembly wishes to take up first.

2 minutes ago, J. J. said:

I think you migh mean Postpone.  :)

No, I covered that in option No. 1, which I believe is actually the best option.  That's why I listed it first.  :)

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Just now, Richard Brown said:

I'm not either, and actually deleted it and then typed it again. I believe it is still an option available to the assembly, especially if the assembly believes there is other pressing business which the assembly wishes to take up first.

No, I covered that in option No. 1, which I believe is actually the best option.  That's why I listed it first.  :)

  Can you lay a motion on the table for a specific time?

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Just now, J. J. said:

  Can you lay a motion on the table for a specific time?

No, but being practical and knowing how things actually transpire in meetings, I imagine there would be side conversations going on about someone trying to get copies made while the motion is on the table and the assembly is taking up other business.  I think the assembly would be fully cognizant of the fact that they will probably take the budget back up when someone returns with copies... or when the treasurer's only copy has been circulated around the meeting room.

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