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Guest Joy W.

Passing of Motions

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Guest Joy W.

Can you vote on a second motion when the first motion is still on the floor

 

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Guest Guest Joy W.

Well, we had a meeting today, and one of the board members stated they wanted to make a motion to amend a particular item on the agenda.  Then one of the board members seconded the motion.  Then, before discussing, another member of the board wanted to also make a motion to amend some other part of the same item.  So, since there was hesitation on seconding it, the Director decided too.  Now, here we have two motions on the floor, which I didn't think was possible until the first one was voted on.  So, instead of going back to the first one, he said, OK let's vote on the second one first.  Can the Director do this?  Thank you.

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No he cannot, your instincts were correct.  When the first amendment to the main motion was pending, the person with the other amendment (#2) should have either waited, or been told to wait (politely, one hopes) by the chair until the first was disposed of.

 

Edited by jstackpo

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2 hours ago, jstackpo said:

No he cannot, your instincts were correct.  When the first amendment to the main motion was pending, the person with the other amendment (#2) should have either waited, or been told to wait (politely, one hopes) by the chair until the first was disposed of.

 

I don't think it's necessarily the case that this couldn't have been done as a secondary amendment.

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2 hours ago, jstackpo said:

No he cannot, your instincts were correct.  When the first amendment to the main motion was pending, the person with the other amendment (#2) should have either waited, or been told to wait (politely, one hopes) by the chair until the first was disposed of.

 

 

23 minutes ago, Joshua Katz said:

I don't think it's necessarily the case that this couldn't have been done as a secondary amendment.

 I agree with Mr. Katz. We don't yet know anything about the nature of the second Amendment. It might indeed have been proper, in which case it should have been taken up first.

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8 hours ago, Guest Guest Joy W. said:

Then, before discussing, another member of the board wanted to also make a motion to amend some other part of the same item.

We are told that the second amendment is on some other part of the same item, so it's hard to imagine how that would be germane to the first amendment.

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9 hours ago, Guest Guest Joy W. said:

Well, we had a meeting today, and one of the board members stated they wanted to make a motion to amend a particular item on the agenda.  Then one of the board members seconded the motion.  Then, before discussing, another member of the board wanted to also make a motion to amend some other part of the same item.  So, since there was hesitation on seconding it, the Director decided too.  Now, here we have two motions on the floor, which I didn't think was possible until the first one was voted on.  So, instead of going back to the first one, he said, OK let's vote on the second one first.  Can the Director do this?  Thank you.

Probably not.

So we have Motion 1 to amend the agenda.  The only time Motion 2 would be in order is if it was a motion to amend the language of Motion 1.  If it was truly a separate motion, like Motion 1, but amending something different, then the chair was in error by allowing the second motion at that time.  He should have said something like, "There is a motion on the floor. Is there any debate on the motion to <Motion 1>", and only after Motion 1 was disposed of, recognizing members who wished to amend to agenda further.

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Guest Joy, here's the way that works:

There is a motion on the floor to "Paint the clubhouse".

Someone proposes an amendment to insert "blue" after the word clubhouse, so that if the amendment is adopted it will read that the club "Paint the clubhouse blue". 

Before that amendment is voted on, someone else moves to add the words "and to build new steps at the front door" to the motion.  That particular amendment is our of order AT THIS TIME because it has nothing to do with the color of the clubhouse... or even with painting it.  More on that later.

However, if instead of the proposed amendment to add "and to build new steps at the front door" somebody had moved to add the word "royal" in front of the word blue, so that if adopted, it would read that the club "paint the clubhouse royal blue".  That amendment IS in order at this time as a second degree amendment because it is directly related to (germane to) the color that the clubhouse will be painted if the motion ultimately gets adopted. 

No further amendments would be in order at this particular time because only a primary and one secondary amendment to a main motion can be on the floor at one time.

Amendments are considered in the reverse order in which they are made.  So, the club first considers whether to add the word "royal" in front of blue.

Once that amendment is disposed of, whether by adoption or rejection, the club then votes on the original amendment (as possibly amended) to "paint the clubhouse blue" (or to "paint the clubhouse royal blue if the "royal" amendment was adopted).

Once the issue of what color to paint the clubhouse has been resolved, but before voting on the final version of the original motion (which has likely been amended to specify a color), it will THEN be in order to make and take up an amendment "and to build new steps at the front door" to the original motion.  And someone could propose to amend that amendment by adding the word "concrete" before "steps", so that if adopted, it would read "and to build new concrete steps at the front door".   And the process I described earlier gets repeated:  You first decide whether to add the word "concrete", then whether to add building steps (whether concrete or wooden), and then FINALLY on the original motion which may still be in its original wording or may have been amended to read "Paint the clubhouse royal blue and to build concrete steps at the front door."  

It may sound awkward and cumbersome, but that is the proper way of taking up amendments.  Whether the second amendment that one of your members proposed was in order at that time would depend on whether it is directly related to the first amendment that was proposed or if it instead was amending some other part of the original motion.

I'm reluctant to even mention this last point, but, if I don't, someone else likely will.  So.....  when the amendment to add "and to build new steps at the front door" is proposed, someone might see fit to raise a point of order that the new amendment is out of order because it has nothing to do with painting the clubhouse and is therefore not germane to the original motion.  That would then be a judgment call that the chair would have to make as to whether the proposed amendment to add building steps is germane to the original motion.  Whichever way the chair rules, his ruling can be appealed to the assembly which would then decide, by majority vote, whether the amendment is germane.  That appeal is debatable, subject to special limits. The member who proposed the amendment to  build new steps would likely argue that his amendment is germane because both the original motion to paint the clubhouse and his amendment to build new steps both relate to needed repairs to the clubhouse.   If it is ultimately determined to not be germane, that member can propose building new steps as a new, separate motion once the motion dealing with painting the clubhouse is disposed of.

That will be $75 please, unless I screwed part of it up, in which case an appropriate discount will be offered. Or a buck 95, :)

Edited to add:  Mr. Novosielski said it just as well, and in a lot fewer words, in his post immediately above!

Edited by Richard Brown
Added last paragraph

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Guest D.H.

That explanation was very well done. I'm not the original poster but Thank you. 

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