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Amending a motion


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If a motion passes, and someone wants to amend the motion (changing some of the details but not revoking), does the original person who made the motion have to request the amendment or can any member do it?

Are there any other restrictions to amending a motion?

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If the motion has already been adopted, and you are in the same meeting, a motion to reconsider should be moved by someone who voted on the prevailing side. If the motion was adopted at a previous session, any member can move to amend something previously adopted. It requires a majority vote if previous notice is given or, without notice, it 2/3 Vote or the vote of a majority of the entire membership.

The person who made the original motion need not agree to the change and has no more say than any other member once the motion is in the hands of the assembly or has been adopted.

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I agree with Mr. Brown's answer and would add that if you are still in the same meeting but voted against the motion (ie: not on the prevailing side) then you can still move to Amend Something Previously Adopted. Because, it is impossible to give notice of the motion if it is still the same meeting where the motion was adopted, your motion would require a two-thirds vote or a majority of the entire membership. If it fails, you can still give notice of the same motion for the next meeting.

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Because if it is at the same session where the original motion was adopted, then someone who voted on the prevailing side would be better off moving to Reconsider (which is what Mr. Brown recommended above). The motion to Reconsider only requires a majority vote to be adopted. Without giving previous notice, the motion to Amend Something Previously Adopted would require a two-thirds Vote or a majority of the entire membership.

Edited by Atul Kapur
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Thanks for all the responses!!

A follow-up question:

We basically tabled this amendment while we investigated the rules you have been helping with. If an amendment to a motion is pending (tabled), can the original motion proceed, or does the original motion have to await the outcome of the amendment?

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It always helps to know whether you're using 'table' to actually mean the motion to postpone to a certain time or the motion to lay on the table, but in both of those cases the main motion as well as any pending amendments are affected equally, i.e., postponed or laid on the table. In other words, you can't 'table' an amendment and then proceed to deal with the main motion.

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6 hours ago, Bruce Lages said:

In other words, you can't 'table' an amendment and then proceed to deal with the main motion

But it seems that they are dealing with a motion to amend something previously adopted. Laying such a motion on the table has no effect on the previously adopted main motion, which remains in force until amended or rescinded.

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10 minutes ago, Shmuel Gerber said:

But it seems that they are dealing with a motion to amend something previously adopted. Laying such a motion on the table has no effect on the previously adopted main motion, which remains in force until amended or rescinded.

But if (as seems the case) the motion is to be executed before the meeting where it can be taken off the table, would lay on the table not be out of order, as its effect would be to kill the motion without debate?

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36 minutes ago, Joshua Katz said:

But if (as seems the case) the motion is to be executed before the meeting where it can be taken off the table, would lay on the table not be out of order, as its effect would be to kill the motion without debate?

There are two motions -- the main motion previously adopted, and the motion to amend something previously adopted.

Suppose that the society's annual banquet is to take place sometime before the next regular meeting. Also suppose that the main motion "to charge guests a $50 admission fee for the society's annual banquet" was adopted (let's call this Motion X), and then a member moves "to amend the previously adopted motion regarding the banquet admission fee by striking out '$50' and inserting '$55'" (let's call this Motion A).

There is no rule that prevents laying Motion A on the table simply because it might not be taken from the table at the current session. And if it isn't taken from the table at the current session, then obviously there would be no point in taking it from the table at the next session.

However, I agree that postponing Motion A to the next meeting would be absurd and out of order, because Motion X will have already been carried out by then.

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