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Guest Jim

Order of Business vs Agenda

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Guest Jim

If the bylaws are silent on an Order of Business, may the Board resolve either its own Special Order of Business or the format of an Agenda, or is it bound to adhere to the Standard Order provided in RONR until such time as obtaining, from the membership, authorization to adopt a Special Order of Business or Agenda?

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If the bylaws are silent on an Order of Business, may the Board resolve either its own Special Order of Business or the format of an Agenda, or is it bound to adhere to the Standard Order provided in RONR until such time as obtaining, from the membership, authorization to adopt a Special Order of Business or Agenda?

If RONR is the parliamentary authority, then the board (assuming it meets within quarterly intervals) cannot adopt its own special order of business, but it certainly can adopt an agenda at any of its meetings.

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Guest Jim

If RONR is the parliamentary authority, then the board (assuming it meets within quarterly intervals) cannot adopt its own special order of business, but it certainly can adopt an agenda at any of its meetings.

If it cannot adopt its own special order, does this then mean that any agenda that it would adopt shall have to be limited to named items situated within the appropriate categories as provided by the Standard Order? (Without such requirement, it would seem to me that the 'agenda' could consist of anything the Board could decide to assemble, and manage, on an ad hoc basis and according to whim.)

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Do you know what ad hoc means? It is Latin for "to this purpose" or "for this special purpose"--it is a term often used for committees: and ad hoc committee--a committee "to this purpose". In other words, a committee for a special purpose.

From your question, it appears you don't understand what you are asking. Have you a copy of RONR 11th ed.? Have you considered the section on agendas and order of business?

Perhaps elaborating on the problem that necessitates the question might be of use in providing you more pointed answers.

The Board should not be deciding the agenda or order of business based on "whim" but rather adopting the agenda, per the order of business (as outlined in RONR 11th--if that is your parliamentary authority), by "consensus".

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The Board should not be deciding the agenda or order of business based on "whim" but rather adopting the agenda, per the order of business (as outlined in RONR 11th--if that is your parliamentary authority), by "consensus".

By "consensus"? No, I don't think so (see the last page of the Introduction to RONR, 11th ed.).

As to adoption of an agenda, see RONR, 11th ed., p. 372, ll. 11-22.

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Guest Edgar

Do you know what ad hoc means? It is Latin for "to this purpose" or "for this special purpose"--it is a term often used for committees: and ad hoc committee--a committee "to this purpose". In other words, a committee for a special purpose.

While Guest_Jim tends to use ten words where two words will do, I think his use of ad hoc in this instance is perfectly reasonable. As opposed to your question which, I think, is not.

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Guest Jim

Apologies to anyone who was rankled by my liberal use (or misuse) of ad hoc to mean as the Board liked in the circumstance.

My difficulty was to fully grasp the proposal that:

If RONR is the parliamentary authority, then the board (assuming it meets within quarterly intervals) cannot adopt its own special order of business, but it certainly can adopt an agenda at any of its meetings.

Bearing in mind that, according to RONR, 11th ed., p. 25, ll 29-35, the society, having adopted RONR as its parliamentary authority, has a binding order of business until such time as the society may adopt its own particular order of business.

Q. 1. Is this order of business binding beyond general meetings, to meetings of the Board and perhaps even committees?

On p. 351, ll 29-34, are referenced "The typical order of business… In other cases, such as a convention, an order of business expressly adopted for a particular session frequently assigns positions, and even times, to specific subjects or items of business; and to this type of order of business the terms agenda …".

On p. 352, ll 17-20, "Unless designated for particular hours or assigned positions item by item in an agenda or program formally adopted for a given session, general orders and special orders are taken up under assigned headings or in customary positions ...

Q. 2. Does this then permit any assembly, in spite of its order of business, to move every item which would have been a general order and special order outside of those headings, in whichever order it likes, leaving those headings "empty", and likewise for every item inside every other heading, such that the board has the effective freedom, by majority vote, to disregard any semblance of consistency that the minority may desire and, effectively by such use of an "agenda", resequence all business without regard to its conduct in any previous meeting?

I understand that those present could anyway decide by a 2/3 vote to suspend the rules. I am mainly looking to understand what, as an individual member, I may argue with respect to consistency that I have a right to expect (provided, of course, the assembly will concur with the point of order that I may seek to argue).

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Guest Jim

(self-replying, having had the chance to catch up and read the suggestion of Dan [thanks] which is RONR, 11th ed., p. 372, ll. 11-22)

If

At a session that already has an order of business, an agenda can be adopted by a majority vote only if it does not create any special orders and does not conflict with the existing order of business; otherwise a two-thirds vote is required.

then the kinds of things a Board might desire to do under my Q. 2. would require a two-thirds vote?

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Q. 1. Is this order of business binding beyond general meetings, to meetings of the Board and perhaps even committees?

Only if the rule prescribing the special order of business specifies that it is.

(self-replying, having had the chance to catch up and read the suggestion of Dan [thanks] which is RONR, 11th ed., p. 372, ll. 11-22)

If

At a session that already has an order of business, an agenda can be adopted by a majority vote only if it does not create any special orders and does not conflict with the existing order of business; otherwise a two-thirds vote is required.

then the kinds of things a Board might desire to do under my Q. 2. would require a two-thirds vote?

I think you have it right. It seems that, unless the board can muster a 2/3 vote, the board would be limited to rearranging items within their usual headings, such as rearranging the general orders. (Of course, this assumes that the board's meetings are no more than a quarterly interval apart.)

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