Examples of action, summary, and detailed minutes in Robert’s Rules

By Ann Macfarlane / June 21, 2022 / Comments Off on Examples of action, summary, and detailed minutes in Robert’s Rules

Our faithful readers know that Jurassic Parliament advocates for action or summary minutes, not detailed minutes. This article, Meeting minutes record what is DONE, not what is SAID, explains our reasoning. We thought it might be helpful to provide a real-life example of each kind of minutes, so here they are. Robert’s Rules of Order…

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Two motions at once?

By Ann Macfarlane / June 2, 2022 /

Dear Dinosaur: At a recent board meeting, a motion was made and seconded and there was discussion. During discussion, another motion was made and seconded to delay consideration of the original motion until the next board meeting (we have monthly meetings). A challenge to this second motion was made stating that the original motion was…

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Significant Changes to Washington Nonprofit Corporation Law

By Ann Macfarlane / May 12, 2022 /

Guest article by Matthew J. Schafer, PRP Many organizations are incorporated in Washington State under the Washington Nonprofit Corporation Act. (This article will refer to this law as “the Act”.) During the 2021 session, the legislature repealed the existing Act and replaced it with a new one. These are some of the most important changes…

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Changing course: Using Robert’s Rules to alter a prior action

By Ann Macfarlane / May 5, 2022 / Comments Off on Changing course: Using Robert’s Rules to alter a prior action

It seems that a lot of confusion prevails within our local government bodies about the Motion to Reconsider and how to use it. This article describes when and how to reconsider a motion, and other ways of changing your mind as a body. It was first published on the MRSC blog. MRSC is a private…

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Can the mayor take part in discussion?

By Ann Macfarlane / April 22, 2022 / Comments Off on Can the mayor take part in discussion?

What is the role of the mayor in discussion at city council meetings? The answer to this question is a bit subtle. Download PDF In a large council, mayor does not take part in discussion Robert’s Rules of Order says that in a large group, the chair of the meeting does not take part in…

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Jim Slaughter’s new website – amazing resource for Robert’s Rules

By Ann Macfarlane / April 12, 2022 /

The announcement that Jim Slaughter has revamped and updated his website is joyful news for all of us committed to good meetings and the democratic process. I have long valued the resources that Jim provides. His book Notes and Comments on Robert’s Rules is my “go-to” volume for clear and helpful explanations of difficult aspects…

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Why bylaws?

By Ann Macfarlane / March 15, 2022 /

Guest article by Ted Weisgal Are bylaws the be-all and end-all of organizational development? If you create good ones will a flourishing organization be the natural outcome? Probably not. Good bylaws are critically important, but you should also have: A mission that resonates with people, Orderly meetings, Members who are reliable, Agendas that justify people’s…

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Should you adopt “The Modern Rules of Order” by Donald Tortorice?

By Ann Macfarlane / March 10, 2022 / Comments Off on Should you adopt “The Modern Rules of Order” by Donald Tortorice?

Guest post by Weldon L. Merritt, JD, PRP-R, CPP-Retired The Modern Rules of Order, 5th edition (MRO), by Donald A. Tortorice, a law professor at William and Mary School of Law, is one of the many works intended to replace Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised, 12th edition (RONR), as a parliamentary authority for adoption…

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What’s the point of the discussion period?

By Ann Macfarlane / February 18, 2022 / Comments Off on What’s the point of the discussion period?

Dear Dinosaur:  A commonly expressed sentiment by both the public and elected officials is that the Discussion Period on any agenda item should not be viewed as an opportunity to convince colleagues to vote one way or another. One should ask questions, and perhaps state one’s own viewpoint. However, attempting to sway votes one way…

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Don’t vote to accept, adopt, approve or receive reports

By Ann Macfarlane / February 11, 2022 /

Updated November 20, 2022 Boards and councils often fail to process reports correctly. When an officer or a committee submits a written report, the board usually should NOT vote to accept, adopt, approve, or receive it. Instead, the report is noted as received for filing. No action is necessary. The minutes simply state: Last month’s…

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