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  1. A parent committee appointed non-members of the committee to its subcommittee. These appointments were never authorized by the assembly (c.f. p. 497, ll. 16-19). If the appointments are ratified by the assembly, does that also, by extension, also ratify all actions done by the subcommittee while the breach was occurring? Or, do the actions taken by the subcommittee also need to be ratified? If no one raises a point of order on the issue of continuing breach in this case, should the parliamentarian point out the error in proceedings?
  2. Can the Chair suspend an adopted motion that may violate the bylaws? The motion that was adopted may or may not be a "policy statement." Until the definition of a policy statement is determined, the Chair would like to suspend the decision and any action. The Board meeting via conference call was Thursday night, so it is too late to reconsider the motion. Our bylaws state that a unanimous decision is required for policy statements. While there was a clear majority, this was not a unanimous decision. Without getting too specific, the motion reads, "I move that the (named org) join the (another org.) in support of House bill __ and Senate bill ___." A Board member read a definition and it made it sound like it was not a policy statement. Another definition did make it sound like a policy statement, but the Board did not vote on which definition to use. Is there a definition for policy statement that is commonly accepted and what is the source? If this is in violation of the bylaws, what do we need to do to rescind or void this motion? Thank you!
  3. Is an election to an office which is not vacant always void and a continuing breach? A member is elected in a special election to an office that the members erroneously believed to be vacant. Is such an election always void or does it depend on the circumstances? Assume, for the purposes of this discussion, that the position is already filled and is not vacant and that the error comes to light after the special election to fill the alleged “vacancy”. Consider the following two scenarios. Case A: The bylaws provide that officers serve a fixed term, such as for two years, and the term has not expired. Someone else is elected to the position in a special election to fill the “vacancy” under the mistaken belief that the office is vacant. Is there any scenario under which such an election would be valid? Case B: The bylaws provide that officers serve a term of two years or until their successors are elected. Someone else is elected to the position by more than a two-thirds vote in a special election under the mistaken belief that the office is vacant. Is the election valid? Why or why not? I know that normally if someone is elected to a position which is not vacant, the election is void and constitutes a continuing breach because it conflicts with something previously adopted (the prior election to a term which has not yet expired). (page 445) However, I’m also mindful of the provisions in RONR that say that the adoption of a motion which conflicts with a motion previously adopted is valid if adopted by the vote necessary to rescind the previously adopted motion. (page 251) The following provisions seem relevant: Page 445 lines 23-25 Page 251 lines 9-10 and 11-15 Pages 653-654 re Removal from Office I’m assuming that the provisions on page 445, lines 23-25, being specific to elections, would be controlling over the more general provisions of page 251 lines 11-15, but I’m anxious to hear what others think.
  4. Guest

    What can a Society do

    The Society of which I am Chair has a real mess on its hands.... - November 1996: Society adopts a standing rule banning the Society from funding political clubs. This rule continues to be in effect. - March 2011: Executive Committee of the Board approves an application to fund a left-wing club. - October 2012: Executive Committee of the Board considers an application to fund a right-wing club. Motion postponed. - December 2012: Board of the Society voted to fund the right-wing club in question. - April 2013: Society holds a General Meeting. A motion to adopt a standing rule banning the Society from funding political clubs is moved and stated by the Chair. The Society votes to postpone this motion to the next General Meeting. - July 2013: Board voted to fund *ALL* clubs, including a number of clubs that had previously been unfunded due to their 'political' status. - September 2013: I become Chair. - ??? 2013: Next General Meeting of the Society will be held. The postponed motion from the April 2013 meeting is now on the floor. What do I do? (a) Declare the motion to be out of order because it is redundant, since the November 1996 motion is still in effect? ( Declare the motion to be in order, and interpret it as constituting instructions to Council to cancel the funding for all 'political' clubs? © A third option?
  5. How does one assembly (a special meeting of the membership) raise a point of order about a continuing breach of the Rules by another (the board)? The breach in question is clear, leaving no room for interpretation, and satisfies the other requirements in RONR. The Board has been notified informally, but to no avail.
  6. Our committee has been meeting even though it has fewer members than the minimum required by the bylaws. It is not a question of a quorum; a sufficient number of members were simply not appointed "promptly" after the Annual General Meeting (held three months ago) as required by the bylaws. As no one is disputing the meaning of "prompt" it is not a question of interpretation. Should the chair raise the point herself, declare the meeting and/or any previous actions invalid and simply report the issue to the parent body (i.e. the Board) whose responsibility it is to make the appointments?
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