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Removing a motion from the agenda


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Hi,

I hope someone can help me. I have a motion on the agenda that I now see is too general. I would like to remove the motion from the Agenda but we have a 15 day policy about making any changes to the Agenda. Do I just have to wait until the motion is called and then say that I am not making the motion, but removing it for further research? Can people discuss the motion at the Board Meeting if it has been removed? Am I actually allowed to have it removed prior to the meeting?

Thanks for any help!!

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Hi,

I hope someone can help me. I have a motion on the agenda that I now see is too general. I would like to remove the motion from the Agenda but we have a 15 day policy about making any changes to the Agenda. Do I just have to wait until the motion is called and then say that I am not making the motion, but removing it for further research? Can people discuss the motion at the Board Meeting if it has been removed? Am I actually allowed to have it removed prior to the meeting?

Thanks for any help!!

A proposed agenda is not the agenda for a session and not binding on that session until adopted in a meeting. If you have rules that differ, you will have to follow them.

The purpose of an agenda is to create special and/or general orders; it is not to prevent business from properly coming before the assembly.

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Guest Guest,

Assuming that the agenda is adopted, as Mr Wynn cautions*, or that your organization's rules require one (see FAQ #14, "How can I get an item on the agenda for a meeting?" at www.robertsrules.com/faq.html#14 -- hmm, my birthday!):

1. How authoritative is the 15-day policy about the agenda?

2. Subject to your rules (like, maybe, the 15-day policy), your motion can be changed (amended) to be more to the assembly's liking ("perfecting" it). Will that do?

3. Yes, generally, the mover of a motion can withdraw it. Or he or someone else can move to have it postponed, or referred to a committee that is instructed to research it.

__________

* Yes?

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Or if you want to get fancy, you (or a friend) can "Object to Consideration of the Motion" just as soon as it is formally made (no later). No second, no debate, immediate vote on "Shall the motion be considered?" If more than 2/3 say "No", that is the end of it.

I see you're ever so slightly more restrictive (or lenient) than RONR, which only requires EQUAL to 2/3 to say "No." ;)

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The fact that a "motion" has been "placed on the agenda" does not change the requirement that, to be considered, a motion must be properly moved and seconded. Unless your motion had previously been introduced and has been postponed (or in some other manner properly carried over) to the meeting in question, when the point on the agenda is reached for the motion, you could simply fail to move its adoption (or, perhaps preferably, obtain the floor to state that you do not wish to move adoption of the motion at that meeting). The motion would then not be before the assembly for consideration. While this course would not preclude someone else from thereupon making the motion, presumably the odds are that the assembly would just move on to the next item on the agenda.

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Hi Burke: I offer a caveat to the question. Suppose the Board conducts its business in the manner of a small board. The chair has requested that the Board members submit their items of business for the agenda in the form of a motion. When the item of business comes up, the chair announce the item of business without stating the motion and the assmbly proceeds to debate the item of buisness as if the motion had been moved. Does this scenario change your answer?

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Hi Burke: I offer a caveat to the question. Suppose the Board conducts its business in the manner of a small board. The chair has requested that the Board members submit their items of business for the agenda in the form of a motion. When the item of business comes up, the chair announce the item of business without stating the motion and the assmbly proceeds to debate the item of buisness as if the motion had been moved. Does this scenario change your answer?

I think you're getting hung up on the agenda too much. The agenda is concerned with WHEN or IN WHAT ORDER items come up; it's not used to decide which items can or cannot come up.

What is your intention? Is it to block a motion from coming before the assembly? You can't do that, unless you Object to the Consideration of a Question, which requires a two-thirds vote in the negative to prevent consideration.

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Suppose the Board conducts its business in the manner of a small board. The chair has requested that the Board members submit their items of business for the agenda in the form of a motion. When the item of business comes up, the chair announce the item of business without stating the motion and the assmbly proceeds to debate the item of buisness as if the motion had been moved.

In the scenario envisioned -- which, it should be stressed, assumes facts not in evidence in the question posed by the individual who started this thread -- I take it the reference is to the small board rule that "When a proposal is perfectly clear to all present, a vote can be taken without a motion's having been introduced." RONR (11th ed.), p. 488, ll. 9-10. It is also true that, whether or not small board rules apply, the chair may sometimes "assume" a motion (p. 54, ll. 33-36). In either circumstance, the individual who originally intended to propose the motion, but does not now wish to see it come before the assembly, could seek to employ any of the various motions that would avoid adoption of the motion without a direct vote on it during that meeting, ranging from Objection to the Consideration of a Question and Postpone Indefinitely to Commit or Postpone to a Certain Time. Or that individual, obtaining the floor, could briefly explain that the motion assumed by the chair originated with him or her and why he or she believes it preferable that the motion not come before the assembly at this time, and then ask unanimous consent that the motion be treated as though it were withdrawn. (I am aware that only the mover of a motion may make the incidental motion Request for Permission to Withdraw a Motion, pp. 295-97; that is why I suggest the language "be treated as though it were withdrawn.")

In none of this discussion do I mean to suggest that it would be improper or undesirable instead to move to amend the agenda, when proposed for adoption, to strike the motion or subject in question.

The agenda is concerned with WHEN or IN WHAT ORDER items come up; it's not used to decide which items can or cannot come up.

That statement is true either when the agenda includes the heading "New Business" or the agenda supplements an existing order of business (such as the standard order of business) that includes the heading "New Business" (see p. 372, ll. 18-22). It is possible, however, that an agenda adopted in the absence (p. 372, ll. 1-6) or in place (p. 372, ll. 6-9 & 18-22) of an existing order of business will not provide for "New Business" and adoption of such an agenda indeed could have the effect of being "used to decide which items can or cannot come up."

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