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  1. Hi all, My union, which is constitutionally bound by RONR, is gearing up for its annual meeting involving bylaw changes. The constitution requires a 14 day notice for any proposed bylaw change. Proposals have been submitted and announced to the membership, however, the union leadership is stating the debate and voting on the proposed bylaw changes can exceed what was originally announced 14 days before the annual meeting. I tried, and failed, to explain "scope of notice" and its purpose in protecting the rights of absent members. What section/chapter is "scope of notice" stated in RONR?
  2. My organization only meets twice a year. To accommodate the unique needs of each biannual meeting, the by-laws state that "the Secretary must propose special rules of order for each biannual meeting." Adopting special rules of order normally requires a 2/3 vote and notice. However, since the by-laws require that he or she propose special rules of order, need the Secretary give notice? Additionally, can notice for special rules of order merely summarize the proposed special rules of order, rather than include their exact text?
  3. 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?
  4. In this era of email and websites, what is considered the standard notice for a special meeting of the membership of an organization? This pertains to a local organization of over 700 members. Usual attendance of regular meetings is about 50 people. When we have annual important decisions to make, that can balloon to 200. The membership at a regular meeting voted to hold a Special Meeting two weeks hence to consider taking an important public position on a current issue. The Executive Board sent notice 10 days in advance (per bylaws) of the meeting in the e-newsletter, buried in the text many inches from the top. The Bylaws say: Article V, Section 3.2 of the Bylaws states: Notice of special meetings shall be given to members ten days prior, except in emergencies. Notice of special meetings must state the time, place and purpose for which called, and no other business shall be transacted unless two-thirds (2/3) of the voting members present concur to the additional agenda items. Section 3.2 doesn't define "notice", but in Bylaw Article V, Section 3.1 on "Regular Meetings" it states: ...When meeting times or places are changed without prior written notice to the membership, no official action may be taken. ------------------------------ I'm old enough to have conducted meetings before email, which isn't actually that long ago. But people seem to think it is the same as a postcard or other mailed notice. When "written notice" is called for, has email been accepted as Ok?
  5. Is there a rule about the length of time needed previous to the annual meeting of a non-profit organization? Thank you, Gina L.
  6. How much notice is required for making an amendment during a convention that takes place one a year? How about for significant changes? Is notice to the Executive Board / Constitution Committee sufficient? What about notice to chief delegates? When would it be reasonable / latest time to have the organization distribute the amendment to members?
  7. There are some actions which, upon a timely Point of Order, will turn: (a.) an adopted motion; into (b.) a null-and-void motion. *** There are at least three kinds of behavior which will trigger the above change: (1.) Previous notice was insufficient. -- A member(s) was/were not mailed the notice. (2.) A member(s) was/were not allowed to attend a meeting. (3.) A member(s) was/were not allowed to vote at a meeting. *** Of the above listed behaviors, there is a circumstance where (a.) the adopted motion will stand. (b.) the adopted motion will be rendered null and void. *** Given a timely Point of Order: Q. Which of the behaviors have a circumstance where the adopted motion will stand? Q. Which of the behaviors will always render an adopted motion as null and void? *** The reader may wish to review some key pages in RONR: (1.) page 252, "Remedy for violation of the right to vote". (2.) page 445, the paragraph which begins, "Otherwise, an election may be contested by . . ." and its bullet items. ***
  8. Assume: Bylaws require only previous notice of amendment, without limitation of the period within which it must be acted upon (i.e., ordinary Robertian notice; no readings; no delays). Assume: In January, the general membership creates a Bylaw Committee. The charge of the Bylaws Committee is to create a full revision of the bylaws. The general membership fixes a "rush" deadline for the final report of the Bylaws Committee -- namely, the next regular meeting (February). Question: May the general membership act upon (adopt!) the revision in the February meeting (i.e., the same meeting as the final report of the Bylaws Committee)?
  9. RONR (11th ed.), p. 91, ll. 31 - 35 (under Special Meeting) states "Notice of the time, place, and purpose of the meeting, clearly and specifically describing the subject matter of the motions or items of business to be brought up, must be sent to all members a reasonable number of days in advance." Additionally, RONR (11th ed.), p. 121, ll. 23 - 27 states "The term previous notice (or notice), as applied to necessary conditions for the adoption of certain motions, has a particular meaning in parliamentary law. A requirement of previous notice means that announcement that the motion will be introduced—indicating its exact content as described below—must be included in the call of the meeting (p. 4) at which the motion will be brought up..." Yet, RONR (11th ed.), p. 93, ll. 13 - 18 states "The requirement that business transacted at a special meeting be specified in the call should not be confused with a requirement that previous notice of a motion be given. Although the call of a special meeting must state the purpose of the meeting, it need not give the exact content of individual motions that will be considered." If the motion that will be considered fits the criteria for "necessary conditions for the adoption of specific motions", must the motion be included in the call for the meeting? Thanks
  10. Our organization has a bylaws requirement for the NomCom's report to be published to the voting members prior to the annual meeting. Specifically, the bylaws state: "The director shall submit the nominating committee report to the members of the district council at least four weeks prior to the annual meeting." For the first time in our 50+ year history, this notice requirement was not met. I understand from previous posts that the prevailing wisdom on this scenario is that the "report" of the NomCom is "invalidated" at the annual meeting. My naive conceptualization of a NomCom report is that it is functionally consists of two parts: a] an informational report consisting of summary of the committee's work and 'recommendations' (e.g. nominations) much like any report and b] an implied incidental main motion to actually place the slate into nomination (I theorize that it is implied because the report affects this outcome despite no explicit motion being made). Questions: Is this a correct understanding? If so, should not the 'invalidation' only apply to the implied motion and not the whole report? (i.e. the report can be given but the committee cannot place names into nomination) If not, how can a procedural provision of the bylaws silence the work of a whole committee who has correctly executed their duty? Speaking of procedural provisions... would this notice requirement be exempt from being overridden by suspending the rules? What has been proposed is to have the NomCom report that they nominated X, Y, Z candidates but that the lack of notice prevents these people from being nominated by the committee and, thus, they are merely recommendations. (Our election protocol includes a section that requires the NomCom Chair's report to include the oral reading of each office and each candidate(s).) Then, we would proceed with taking nominations from the floor - including those people who would otherwise have been nominated by the committee. Does this make sense? Any other thoughts, input, or ideas? I, as relatively new parliamentarian, will likely have to help the Chair with many questions from an unhappy crowd. I'd like to be fully prepared as well as having an easily understandable explanation for a membership not versed in parli pro. Thanks, in advance, for any thoughts, advice, and help.
  11. Guest

    bylaw amendment notice

    Current bylaws only stipulate that amendments need two-thirds approval. There is no mention of an advance notice requirement. The President stated that advance notice is required through Robert's Rules since the bylaws are silent. A bylaw committee was formed at the last annual business meeting. Is there any way the committee could present amendments for a vote by the assembly, if no amendments had been submitted prior to the annual business meeting?
  12. What would be the best way to give notice by mail for the special order for a meeting? example; nominations and elections for delegates to the national convention which we want to spend as much time of the meeting to complete this task before beginning on regular business. Thanks.
  13. If an organization's bylaws state that Board meetings are open to the entire membership, can the Board still go into Executive Session for private discussion?
  14. Guest


    The AGM of our requires 14 days notice to all members. If this notice does not get sent out and the meeting takes place., is it null and void?
  15. I have a few questions regarding proper notification in order to change bylaws. The organization (a Union) I am apart of recently voted in changes to the bylaws. In the current bylaws it states, “Bylaws shall be adopted and amended only after a one month notice to the local’s membership and by two-thirds vote of members, either present at the meeting and voting, with provisions for absentee vote, or by mail ballot. Such bylaws do not require NEC approval. Locals shall send a copy of their bylaws, the notice and membership meeting minutes to the district office." 1) What is proper notice and what must be stated in the notice? The one month notice they sent out was after a meeting and stated that smeone moved to open to amend the bylaws and proposals would be made at the next meeting. In that same email they said to come to the meeting with your proposal and gave format in which to present it. The same email (notification) also stated that they would be voted on in the next meeting (the same meeting they are proposed) as well and only by those present at the meeting. My understanding of RONR and past practice with two other organizations was that they would be proposed then tabled. Voting woudl occur the meeting following the meeting they were proposed. After the meeting, the proposed changes would be sent out to all members, so they could read them and be able to think about friendly amending or voting yes or no. Also to make arrangements for an absentee vote. Does this count as proper notice of the changes since nothing was presented or brought up in the meeting in which it was voted to open the bylaws up to changes? It was just brought up to amend and come to the next meeting with proposals. Nothing was stated. 2) Are they in violoation of the bylaw stated above? If the above counts as proper notice, then is the Union still in violation because they did not offer any provisions for absentee ballot voting, which is clearly stated in the current bylaw? Or am I misinterpretting the current bylaw stated above? In what they claim to be the notice, they blatantly stated you had to come to the meeting to vote: zero provisions were made for absentee votes. How would someone be able to put in an absentee vote if they have no idea what they are voting on? Again this brings me back to the understanding of RONR that they should be tabled, members should be notified as to exact changes, and changes would be voted in the following meeting. In doing this an absentee ballot vote may be submitted and the member would be able to know what they are voting on. 3) If they are in violation, then what could be my next course of action be? I informally went to the Executive Board with my concerns and they have stone walled me. They believe proper notice was sent and they are within their rights. Sorry for the wordiness, but I tried to get everything in there. Any help in clarification would greatly be appreciated or if more information is needed I'd be happy to supply it.
  16. We have a situation in our Association which has never come up before and, frankly, we're overwhelmed. A statement was made in an open meeting which condemned members of a local association. Those Chapter members were obviously upset and one filed a formal complaint citing the bylaws of our Association and the relief requested was that the offender NOT take office next year and also that a public apology be issued. However, according to the State bylaws, the local chapter bylaws AND the national association bylaws, the remedies are "discipline, expulsion, suspension, and/or termination of membership." This is all the National, state and local bylaws say as far as "discipline" for infractions, but no guidelines or procedures as to the definition of "discipline" or what it should entail, including specifically calling for an apology in an open meeting. Is a derogatory remark in an open meeting grounds for negating installation of an officer? Since there is no written procedure to follow as to trial or handling by a selected committee, how should this properly be handled? Also, the original complainant (and past State President), forwarded a copy of her complaint not only to the current State President, but also to the Local Chapter President who then forwarded it to the person the charges were aimed at directly. Does this violate the confidentiality of the charges, as cited in Robert's Rules that it should remain confidential, and, if so, how should this infraction be handled? We've been looking at Chapter XX, and it seems the more we read, the more confused we're becoming. It's all just so mind-boggling and we fear this situation will tear our association in two. Guidance suggestions?
  17. What notice is required when it is proposed that a Bylaws Convention be held to revise the Bylaws? Is it required that members be given copies of the proposed revised bylaws in advance of the "Convention"? Or, are members just notified that there will be a Bylaws Convention to revise the bylaws, and the "Convention" itself is actually a "free for all" where anything can happen to the bylaws without notice to the membership, except for those present at the "convention"?
  18. Hi, how much notice to you need to give to call a board of directors meeting? I was notified with less than 24 hours notice that a meeting was being called, plus the meeting was being held on a legal holiday. Is this legal?
  19. I am the chair of the credentials committee at an upcoming state convention. Some local units are holding special meetings to fill vacancies in their delegation (we don't have alternates). Special meetings are authorized. I am receiving information that some local units are not giving proper notice of these meetings. One unit gave notice less than the five days required by the bylaws and another published the notice in the local paper instead of mailing it out. The bylaws require that the local unit certify the results of the election to the state organization, which is then used to issue credentials. If no one at the local level objects to the lack of timely notice, does a person have grounds at the convention to challenge the delegates elected at the meeting (which is a real possibility)? I understand that business conducted at a meeting without proper notice is null and void, but does the credentials committee have authority to declare the elections void? Or is the proper recourse to tell a complaining party that he or she has to raise a point of order at the next meeting of the local unit, which means the elections will stand for the convention? The convention starts next week, so there won't be time for any other local meetings before then. The convention as a whole will have the ultimate say on who it seats, so I'm just trying to get a handle on the procedure at the committee level. Thank you.
  20. Guest

    giving notice

    Last year, our Board did not want to change our condo bylaws, which I did, so I gave notice at the last owner meeting that at the next owner meeting I would move to revise the bylaws. That next owner meeting will be held in September. There are 310 owners. Since I gave the notice and will make the motion, is it my responsibility to see that all 310 owners have a copy of the current bylaws and my revised bylaws before the meeting? [There is nothing in our bylaws on this subject.] Assuming that the anwer to my last question is "yes", can I send the current and revised bylaws as attachments to an email to the owners so that I will not incur too much duplicating and postal mail expense? (A few owners have no email, so I presume that I would have to mail those.) [There is nothing in our bylaws on this subject.] Thanks for your responses. Norm
  21. There seems to have been a concentrated number of violations to the rules at the last (aborted) annual meeting of our association (HOA). Here's what happened. The Annual Meeting of our association had been properly noticed (10 days). However, at the time the meeting was supposed to start, it became obvious that a quorum would not be established. The Chair never called the meeting to order (no words to that effect were pronounced by anyone siting at the presiding desk). The President of the Association simply called off the meeting indicating that a new date would be decided upon shortly. Nobody objected and everybody left. Questions: 1. Did the meeting/ session even start? (no call to order) 2. If the meeting is called to order and a lack of quorum is established, can the Chair simply decide to adjourn? 3. If the Assembly had voted to fix the time for the adjournment, would there have been notices requirements? (The Bylaws require 10 days to notice a meeting but nothing is said about noticing an adjournment). 4. Did adjourning the meeting sine die close the session? This was supposed to be our Annual session at which elections were to take place. If the session is closed, what do we call the next meeting (Annual meeting or special meeting) and does it need to be noticed? How do we get out of this mess?
  22. At our last regular board meeting there were two motions passed calling a special meeting: the first to have our attorney present at a special meeting to address questions regarding amendments to our bylaws, and the second to defer approval of the proposed bylaws amendments until the special meeting. Our bylaws require 15 days notice for any meeting of the board, however the date we set for the special meeting was less than 15 days after the regular meeting. Under the circumstances, what business (if any) can be transacted at the special meeting? Separately, our bylaws stipulate the agenda for every meeting--role call, reading of minutes, new members, finance report, committee reports... Do we follow that agenda at the special meeting? Thank you Adam
  23. Hello, our bylaws require notice of board meetings 15 days prior by mail or personal phone call. Notice of our upcoming meeting has already been given. In order to provide notice of a motion to rescind a motion adopted at our last meeting, can our corresponding secretary phone each board member, or is the motion required to be in writing? Thank you Adam
  24. Our bylaws require due notice of the date, time and location of meetings. Is it possible for the location of a meeting to be changed once the notice has gone out, if the new location shares the parking lot of the orginal location (i.e. they are a very, very short walking distance from each other) and they are the only two buildings in 100 miles?
  25. Is a notice requirement in the bylaws considered a "rule" than can be suspended at a general meeting?
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