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Martina Brown

Making a Motion on a Report

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I am a school board member.  Below is a copy of our agenda.     Under Item 10.3, a staff member will present the back to school plan to the board.  It will not come out of a committee.  The plan includes option A (Virtual) and B (in-person).   If I wanted an option C (hybrid) to be considered, could I make a motion for the administration to develop and present Option C to the board? Can motions only be made for certain items, such as new business?  The board is under the assumption that motions can only be made and action can only be taken under the action items and approval part of an agenda. 
Thank you for your time  

 DATE: JULY 21, 2020 BOARD AGENDA
1.0 Call to Order 6 p.m.   Chair Presides
2.0 Executive Session
2.1 Employment Recommendations for 2020–2021
3.0 Adjourn Executive Session
4.0 Call to Order General Session 6:30 p.m.
4.1 Notification of Compliance with S.C. Freedom of Information Act

4.2 Notification that District Tapes Meeting
4.3 Invocation and Pledge of Allegiance 
5.0 Approval of the Agenda
6.0 Approval of Minutes of the June 2, 8, and 23 Board Meetings
7.0 Reports and Action Items, if Needed, from Executive Session
8.0 Citizens’ Participation

9.0 Action Items
9.1 Changes to 2020–2021 Academic Calendar — Chief Academic Officer

10.0 Superintendent’s Report
10.1 Report — Superintendent’s Update 
10.2 Report — Stronger Together Back to School Planning Process - Leadership Development and Continuous Improvement Director
10.3 Report — Stronger Together Back to School Plans —
Professional Learning Coordinator
10.4 Report — Operations Update — Chief Operations Officer

11.0 Items for Board Information
11.1 Monthly General Fund Budget Transfers — June 2020 11.2 Monthly Capital Projects Report — June 2020
11.3 Monthly Unauthorized Procurements Report — June 2020

12.0 Adjourn
 

Edited by Martina Brown

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You should probably discuss this with the board's attorney, but is this report informational only, or does the board intend to act on it?  Either way, you probably will be able to make a motion to refer the entire matter back to the staff to consider your option C if you feel that option needs more study than the board could give it during a meeting.

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As far as the rules in RONR control, any member of the school board may make a main motion that is different from—even radically opposed to—the plan presented by the staff member.

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13 hours ago, Martina Brown said:

If I wanted an option C (hybrid) to be considered, could I make a motion for the administration to develop and present Option C to the board?

So far as RONR is concerned, I see no reason why not.

14 hours ago, Martina Brown said:

Can motions only be made for certain items, such as new business?

So far as the rules in RONR are concerned, motions relating to a report may be (and often are) made immediately following the report. They could also be made during New Business, if desired.

14 hours ago, Martina Brown said:

The board is under the assumption that motions can only be made and action can only be taken under the action items and approval part of an agenda. 

This certainly is not correct so far as RONR is concerned, partially because RONR does not use the phrase "action items."

Regarding all of these questions, I would note that there may be something on these subjects in the school board's rules and/or in applicable law, and such rules will take precedence over RONR.

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