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Joshua Katz

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  1. Joshua Katz

    Emergency Meeting/vote

    So, pardon me if I'm missing something, but why not just show up on the 30th, for this default meeting, and elect officers? And then amend your bylaws so that the board cannot prevent meetings from happening.
  2. Please consider joining our humble forum. As a member, you can edit your own posts. (But you shouldn't delete them, or make edits that entirely change them, because that makes the thread nonsensical. But you can add a note like this one to the bottom of a post, once you join.)
  3. Joshua Katz

    Emergency Meeting/vote

    Oh, c'mon everyone. The bylaws allow for meetings at the call of 5 members. If they have 5 members who want a meeting, I don't think the fact that the bylaws call for the Secretary to issue the call itself is sufficient to prevent holding any meetings until the officer terms expire, at which point there are no officers and no one to call a meeting. We're about about 19 people who like playing a sport. There's no reason they should be forced to stop playing their sport because the Secretary didn't send a letter about something everyone knew about (that can be arranged, I'm sure, there's only 19 of them). I would suggest they just hold the meeting anyway. They have no money - is someone really going to sue over this? If, on the other hand, there aren't 5 people who want to meeting, I suppose there's not enough enthusiasm to play much anyway, so the whole thing becomes a non-issue.
  4. Joshua Katz

    Rejected and tabled motions

    No one seems to have taken up "amended," so I'll take a crack at it. Unamended: Mr. X moved that Y. After debate, the motion was adopted. Amended: Mr. X made a motion which, after debate and amendment, read X. The motion was adopted. Note that you need not show the original motion and how it was amended, just the final form. The person who moves to amend is not included in the minutes. Also note that none of these things are accomplished parenthetically.
  5. Joshua Katz

    Nullify a vote

    I agree everything depends on the language, but what we were told is that the qualification is (among other things) 15 years, and that this member had only 13 years. Certainly I can imagine hard cases when it comes to defining 15 years of service, but if you've only been a member for 13 years, that one seems pretty straightforward. I suppose it is possible to interpret the original post as saying that the person was a member for 15 years, but didn't meet attendance requirements for 2 of them, in which case I agree one would need to parse the bylaws carefully to determine if the member is qualified. In any case, though, interpretation is for the organization, and the organization will figure it out when a point of order is raised.
  6. Joshua Katz

    Term Length Interpretation

    Sure looks to me like you only need to be elected. But I am not a member of your department, so my opinion is worth what you pay for it. Why would the person presiding at a meeting not have the authority to rule on a point of order?
  7. Joshua Katz

    Motion to start a discussion

    A motion to discuss is out of order. You move to do something. She could, if she wants, make her motion, then move to postpone definitely. But she cannot unilaterally decide that the assembly will not be voting on the matter tonight. Or she can move for a recess, during which it gets discussed. Regarding your follow-up question, discussion is not business. Business means taking action, so wanting to talk about something without resolution (in my opinion, a useful way to waste time) is not bringing new business, or any business at all, to the board.
  8. Joshua Katz

    Proposed Bylaw Amendments

    Thank you. To be absolutely clear, I just want to amplify my remark that my argument may fail in the HOA context - but that is a question for the wisdom of the body.
  9. Joshua Katz

    Passing of Motions

    I don't think it's necessarily the case that this couldn't have been done as a secondary amendment.
  10. Joshua Katz

    Passing of Motions

    Well, not a second main motion. You can vote on subsidiary and incidental motions. What do you have in mind?
  11. Joshua Katz

    Proposed Bylaw Amendments

    Well, the latter complaints here can be dealt with by voting him out of office and/or raising points of order at the time of violations. So let's focus on the bylaw proposal. First, note that no rule in RONR can definitively tell you what your bylaws should say, since your bylaws outrank RONR. That said, RONR gives advice, and we can give general advice based on our experience, but ultimately your organization decides what is in its bylaws. I am not sure I agree with you that, by itself, the fact that a behavior can be dealt with by immediate discipline means it isn't a valid reason to remove a director. The board might prefer not to have its meetings taken up with disciplinary procedures for offenses in meetings, and to actually conduct business, so it might be a good idea to get rid of someone rather than continually voting to kick him out of meetings. On the other hand, I'm not sure an-exclusive list of causes for removal is particularly meaningful. Certainly no one would think that it requires removal of anyone who does any of these things, even if only once (hopefully). It also doesn't require that one of these things be done before removing for cause. In short, it does just about nothing in terms of rules. I'm not convinced, outside the corporate context, that cause requirements for board removal are a good idea. They expose the organization to litigation more than is necessary by providing an argument that removal violated the bylaws, and they don't encourage or discourage any particular removal. Things are different for corporations, and potentially for HOAs, so this might not be helpful input. As far as legal requirements, we can't help you, we can only provide advice on bylaws as concerns parliamentary procedure. Finally, if the President has expended organization funds without authorization, whether by a bylaw or rule, or a vote by a body capable of giving authorization, then you have a few options. You can discipline the President, including demanding repayment. You can decline to do so and permit people to stick their hands in the treasury. I think the former is generally more useful, but it's up to your organization, via its disciplinary procedures. This could be a matter of interpretation - if, for instance, the President is authorized to consult with an attorney and bill the organization as needed, it isn't clear to me that there's anything wrong with doing so in the context of a bylaw proposal (even if he's making the proposal as an ordinary human, not the President). Suppose someone else gave notice of a proposal. I would think it would be proper for the President, if in doubt, to get legal advice, paid for by the organization, about the legality and legal impact of the change. The same, I think, would apply when the President writes the proposal.
  12. Joshua Katz

    Disruptive speaker

    Is the speaker a member? If not, you can kick him out. If so, see the discussion in RONR of penalties for offenses within a meeting. In short, you call him to order, then name the offender, then the assembly itself can use an abbreviated disciplinary procedure to deal with him. If you've kicked him out but he has refused to leave, call the police or other legally-authorized personnel, such as private security.
  13. Parliamentary procedure is about how you make decisions, not what decisions you make. We can't give you advice on your lease agreements. However, charges for members need to be authorized in the bylaws, unless an applicable procedural law authorizes them.
  14. How about term of office? With this information, I think we can determine how this vacancy should be filled, if you tell us how the term of office is defined.
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