Parliamentary Procedure Quick Reference

Short Description

Quick reference guide to any meeting as well as Parliamentary procedures

Target Audience

Vice President
BOG Chairman

Borradaile Challenge or Area of Focus

Chapter Oprations

Sample Meeting Agenda for any general meetings

  1. Call to Order
  2. Opening Ceremonies (optional)
  3. Roll Call (if customary)
  4. Reading and Approval of Minutes
  5. Reports of Officers, Boards, and Standing Committees
  6. Reports of Special Committees (announced only if such committees are prepared or instructed to report)
  7. Special Orders (announced only if there are special orders)
  8. Unfinished Business and General Orders
  9. New Business
  10. Announcements
  11. Program (if a program or a speaker is planned for the meeting*)

Types of Motions

are such that, while having no relation to the pending question, are of such urgency, or importance that they are entitled to immediate consideration; relate to members, and to the organization, rather than to particular items of business.
are those that may be applied to another motion for the purpose of modifying it, delaying action on it, or disposing of it.
are the basis of all parliamentary procedure—provides method of bringing business before the assembly for consideration and action. Can only be considered if no other business is pending.

Procedure for Handling a Motion

    1. A member rises when no one else has the floor and addresses the chair: "Mr./Madam President, Mr./Madam Chairman" or by other proper title.
      1. In a large assembly, the member gives name and identification.
      2. The member remains standing and awaits recognition by the chair.
    2. The chair recognizes the member by announcing his name or title, or in a small assembly, by nodding to him.
    1. The member makes the motion: "I move that (or 'to')…" and resumes his seat.
    2. Another member, without rising, seconds the motion: "I second the motion" or "I second it" or even "second."
    3. The chair states the motion: It is moved and seconded that … Are you ready for the question?"
    1. Members can debate the motion.
      1. Before speaking in debate, members obtain the floor as stated above.
      2. The maker of the motion has first right to the floor if he claims it properly.
      3. All remarks must be addressed to the chair.
      4. Debate must be confined to the merits of the motion.
      5. Debate can only be closed by order of the assembly (2/3 vote) or by the chair if no one seeks the floor for further debate.
    2. The chair puts the motion to a vote.
      1. The chair asks: "Are you ready for the question?" If no one rises to claim the floor, the chair proceeds to take the vote.
      2. The chair says: "The question is on the adoption of the motion that… As many as are in favor, say 'Aye". (Pause for response.) Those opposed, say 'No'. (Pause for response.)
    3. The chair announces the result of the vote.
      1. "The ayes have it, the motion is adopted, and (indicating the effect of the vote)" or
      2. "The noes have it, and the motion is lost."

Motion Quick Reference Chart

Name of Motion Is it in order when another has the floor Does it Require a second Is it debateable Is it amendable What vote is required for adoption May it be reconsidered
* Fix the time which to adjourn No Yes No Yes M Yes Priviliged
** Adjourn No Yes No No M No Privileged
* Recess No Yes No Yes M No Privileged
Raise a question of Privilege Yes No No No (1) No Privileged
Call for the orders of the day Yes No No No (2) Privileged
Lay on the Table No Yes No No M No subsidiary
Previous Question No Yes No No 2/3 Yes subsidiary
Limit or extend limits of debate No Yes No Yes 2/3 Yes (3) subsidiary
Postpone to a certain time (definitely) No Yes Yes Yes M (4) Yes subsidiary
Commit (refer to a committee) No Yes Yes Yes M Yes (5) subsidiary
Ammend No Yes Yes (6) Yes M Yes subsidiary
Postpone indefinitely No Yes Yes No M aff. only
Main Motion No Yes Yes Yes M Yes Main

Based on Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised (RONR)

* A main motion if made when no business pending
** Check RONR for specific rules

(1) Chair grants
(2) No vote; Demand
(3) Unexecuted part may be reconsidered
(4) 2/3 vote if made a special order
(5) Only if committee has not started work
(6) If applied to a debatable motion

Taken from the National Association of Parliamentarians

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