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Chris Houdek

Adoption or Acceptance of Reports

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I am the chair of a rather large Board of Directors that includes several officers and 9 standing committee chairs.  During our monthly meetings, each officer and committee chair has the opportunity to provide a report (so 12 reports!).  Most of the time, the reports contain a status update with no request for the Board.  In previous years (under previous chairs), after each report was given, the chair would ask for a motion to accept the report.  And then a vote would happen.  This motion and vote would occur regardless of the content of the report.  Also, if there were actions/recommendations to the Board, these would be provided as specific motions and addressed individually at the end of the report (before the report was accepted).

In the cases where there is no recommendation or request of the Board in the report (i.e. information only), I would like to not ask for a motion to accept the report.  

I have a few questions regarding Section 54:  Adoption and Acceptance of Reports:

  1. Am I interpreting part 1 correctly that the report does not need to be accepted if it is informational only.  So I can move from one report to the next with no 'acceptance' motion & vote?
  2. Should I allow questions or comments on the report by the assembly?
  3. How do I or the Board determine when a report should be accepted?  Such as the Auditing Committee Report "When the auditing committee reports, this report should be accepted, or adopted, which carries with it the endorsement of the financial report."  Are there other reports that should be endorsed by the Board?
Edited by Chris Houdek

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45 minutes ago, Chris Houdek said:

I have a few questions regarding Section 54:  Adoption and Acceptance of Reports:

For the future, please get the right book (Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, 11th edition) and read pages 504-510.

54 minutes ago, Chris Houdek said:

1. Am I interpreting part 1 correctly that the report does not need to be accepted if it is informational only.  So I can move from one report to the next with no 'acceptance' motion & vote?

Correct. The report should not be "accepted" unless the assembly wishes to endorse the entire report as its own statement, and in that case it would be better to "adopt" the report, which is what "accept" actually means.

57 minutes ago, Chris Houdek said:

2. Should I allow questions or comments on the report by the assembly?

Members can ask factual questions that are reasonably related to the business currently before the board, but in a large board, comments are not in order unless they promptly lead to a motion or the board has granted permission to have an informal discussion of the subject. (See RONR, 11th ed., pp. 34-35 and 395-396. For the rules in a small board, see pp. 487-488.

1 hour ago, Chris Houdek said:

3. How do I or the Board determine when a report should be accepted?  Such as the Auditing Committee Report "When the auditing committee reports, this report should be accepted, or adopted, which carries with it the endorsement of the financial report."  Are there other reports that should be endorsed by the Board?

The auditors' report is the only type of report that needs to be accepted. The secretary's primary report is the minutes of the previous meeting, and minutes are approved without a motion (by the chair's asking for corrections and declaring the minutes approved when there are no further corrections). Other reports are disposed of according to their nature, as described in the section you referred to, and in general do not involve a motion to "accept."

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Thank you.  I will study on the pages you referenced.

42 minutes ago, Shmuel Gerber said:

Correct. The report should not be "accepted" unless the assembly wishes to endorse the entire report as its own statement, and in that case it would be better to "adopt" the report, which is what "accept" actually means.

Do you have an example or explanation of why an assembly would want to endorse the entire report as its own statement?  Does the assembly decide this on its own, or does the chair make that determination?

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30 minutes ago, Chris Houdek said:

Do you have an example or explanation of why an assembly would want to endorse the entire report as its own statement?

The main reason would be if it is intended to publish the report and share it outside of the society. In some organizations, for instance, the annual report of the board will be published.

32 minutes ago, Chris Houdek said:

Does the assembly decide this on its own, or does the chair make that determination?

The assembly decides.

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