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Guest Jane

What constitutes "Notice" of a motion to amend or rescind a prior motion?

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Guest Jane

Hello,

I raised issues a couple days ago associated with confusion in a meeting, and got a great deal of helpful feedback. As I am still an RONR newbie, I'd appreciate a bit more feedback.

Our group will meet again in a couple of days, and one or more members are likely to make a motion to amend a prior motion (I think this most likely), or to rescind the prior motion that was voted on at our last meeting, reopen discussion, and make a new motion on the basis of our discussion.

I have two questions. First, given that the main motion from our meeting has now been voted on (and has now passed), can people move to amend or to rescind that original motion? My reading of RONR makes me think that amend is what is wanted, and that this is allowed, and I'm frankly confused about whether rescind is properly applicable to this situation or not.

What is desired is an amendment to the motion - not a striking of the motion. What had folks all confused before was whether or not to suggest an amendment, and precisely what to suggest, but a substantial portion of the main motion was entirely acceptable to the group (unanimously). My question is how we best get to the place where an amendment could be proposed and discussed, allowing for appropriate discussion and voting.

Second, what does prior notice constitute? We are using a meeting time on Tuesday that had been reserved in case it was needed for this topic, but no motion to amend or rescind has been made in our meeting this past Thursday - I am only aware of the intention for such a motion to be brought forward in our Tuesday meeting. Should my call for the meeting include "notice" that a motion to amend or to rescind may be forthcoming, and does that constitute "notice" - or is this is case where "notice" does not apply, as nothing was raised while we were still meeting together?

I'm not worried about 2/3 vs simple majority - but more just trying to understand all this stuff. I can see that "notice" helps prepare the group as a whole, so it can be more than merely making it easier for a motion to pass. So I am most interested also in what you folks would consider helpful for people coming into this meeting. I think most people are aware that there is interest in an amendment, with the exception of a few people who were not in the original meeting, but will be in this Tuesday's meeting.

Thank you in advance for your clarifications!!

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Hello,

I raised issues a couple days ago associated with confusion in a meeting, and got a great deal of helpful feedback. As I am still an RONR newbie, I'd appreciate a bit more feedback.

Our group will meet again in a couple of days, and one or more members are likely to make a motion to amend a prior motion (I think this most likely), or to rescind the prior motion that was voted on at our last meeting, reopen discussion, and make a new motion on the basis of our discussion.

I have two questions. First, given that the main motion from our meeting has now been voted on (and has now passed), can people move to amend or to rescind that original motion? My reading of RONR makes me think that amend is what is wanted, and that this is allowed, and I'm frankly confused about whether rescind is properly applicable to this situation or not.

What is desired is an amendment to the motion - not a striking of the motion. What had folks all confused before was whether or not to suggest an amendment, and precisely what to suggest, but a substantial portion of the main motion was entirely acceptable to the group (unanimously). My question is how we best get to the place where an amendment could be proposed and discussed, allowing for appropriate discussion and voting.

Second, what does prior notice constitute? We are using a meeting time on Tuesday that had been reserved in case it was needed for this topic, but no motion to amend or rescind has been made in our meeting this past Thursday - I am only aware of the intention for such a motion to be brought forward in our Tuesday meeting. Should my call for the meeting include "notice" that a motion to amend or to rescind may be forthcoming, and does that constitute "notice" - or is this is case where "notice" does not apply, as nothing was raised while we were still meeting together?

I'm not worried about 2/3 vs simple majority - but more just trying to understand all this stuff. I can see that "notice" helps prepare the group as a whole, so it can be more than merely making it easier for a motion to pass. So I am most interested also in what you folks would consider helpful for people coming into this meeting. I think most people are aware that there is interest in an amendment, with the exception of a few people who were not in the original meeting, but will be in this Tuesday's meeting.

Thank you in advance for your clarifications!!

The motion to Rescind and the motion to Amend Something Previously Adopted follow the same rules, which you will find detailed in Section 35 of RONR (11th ed.).

Including notice of the motion in the call of the meeting is acceptable "notice," according to RONR. As you seem to already understand, the notice only serves to reduce the vote requirement from 2/3 to a majority.

Lack of notice does not make a motion to Rescind or ASPA out of order, per se.

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Should my call for the meeting include "notice" that a motion to amend or to rescind may be forthcoming, and does that constitute "notice" - or is this is case where "notice" does not apply, as nothing was raised while we were still meeting together?

Jane - just be aware that stating only that a motion to amend the previous motion on xyz may be forthcoming would not constitute previous notice that will satisfy the RONR requirement for reducing the voting threshold from 2/3 to a majority. You need to be more specific in your notice and describe what the amendment intends to change. See RONR (11th ed.), p.306,ll. 26-28: "...a majority vote when notice of intent to make the motion, stating the complete substance of the proposed change, has been given at the previous meeting... or in the call of the present meeting..."

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... My question is how we best get to the place where an amendment could be proposed and discussed, allowing for appropriate discussion and voting.

I'm not sure what you're asking. How to introduce the motion? Wait till nothing else is pending. Seek recognition from the chair. (Somebody else does this when Jane is presiding!) Say, I move to amend the motion adopted Sunday, that we buy two sailboats, so that we buy one sailboat and one puppy." (You see that on p. 61 of your RONR-In Brief, Jane, yes?)

(Is that what you were asking??)

... We are using a meeting time on Tuesday... Should my call for the meeting include "notice" that a motion to amend or to rescind may be forthcoming, and does that constitute "notice"

I'm concerned about this, Jane: how are you going to provide proper notice to the entire membership for a meeting that's scheduled for tomorrow, so that the members are duly informed about the meeting itself -- not to mention the motion to amend, that you anticipate?

-- Remember, if the previous notice of the motion does NOT reach the members in enough time, the motion can still be considered; it will just require either of the two greater voting thresholds for adoption.

Thank you in advance for your clarifications!!

Jane, you have read your RONR-In Brief for the first time, yesterday or today, haven't you?

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...

Our group will meet again in a couple of days, and one or more members are likely to make a motion to amend a prior motion (I think this most likely), or to rescind the prior motion that was voted ...

We are using a meeting time on Tuesday that had been reserved in case it was needed for this topic, but no motion to amend or rescind has been made in our meeting this past Thursday - I am only aware of the intention for such a motion to be brought forward in our Tuesday meeting. Should my call for the meeting include "notice" that a motion to amend or to rescind may be forthcoming, and does that constitute "notice" - or is this is case where "notice" does not apply, as nothing was raised while we were still meeting together?

...

When you say that you are meeting again on Tuesday, I assume the members have already been informed that a meeting will take place? If that's the case, it's confusing that you are asking what your 'call for the meeting' should include. Presumably the 'call' has already happened; otherwise, how were the members informed?

As Mr. Tesser pointed out, it's darn late to be giving any sort of notice for something that's happening tomorrow.

Or are you asking whether an informal sort of notice (for example, calling all the members up on the phone and telling them that there's likely to be a motion to amend [the previously adopted motion] presented at Tuesday's meeting) can be counted as 'notice' in the RONR sense?

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First, given that the main motion from our meeting has now been voted on (and has now passed), can people move to amend or to rescind that original motion?

Generally speaking, yes.

My reading of RONR makes me think that amend is what is wanted, and that this is allowed, and I'm frankly confused about whether rescind is properly applicable to this situation or not.

What is desired is an amendment to the motion - not a striking of the motion. What had folks all confused before was whether or not to suggest an amendment, and precisely what to suggest, but a substantial portion of the main motion was entirely acceptable to the group (unanimously). My question is how we best get to the place where an amendment could be proposed and discussed, allowing for appropriate discussion and voting.

Based on the information provided, it seems that the motion to Amend Something Previously Adopted would be the preferable motion. The motion to Rescind may or may not be in order in this circumstance - I would need more information to say for sure. An amendment to something previously adopted can simply be made the same as any other main motion (although there are some notice issues, which we'll get to

Second, what does prior notice constitute?

A member may announce his intent to make the motion at the previous meeting, provided the next meeting is within a quarterly interval. Alternately, the notice may be included in the call of the meeting.

Should my call for the meeting include "notice" that a motion to amend or to rescind may be forthcoming, and does that constitute "notice" - or is this is case where "notice" does not apply, as nothing was raised while we were still meeting together?

In the unlikely event that your Bylaws permit the call of the meeting to be sent such a short time before the meeting, yes, this does constitute previous notice. Since you say that there is little concern that the amendment will receive the required vote threshold and this is primarily a matter of courtesy, however, it certainly doesn't hurt to inform the members of the motion even if it does not satisfy the requirements for previous notice.

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