Lost the vote? Don’t sabotage the council’s action

By Ann Macfarlane / April 20, 2021 /
A black circle contains a white bomb illustration with a lit fuse, symbolizing the explosive impact of a lost-vote.

We’ve had inquiries recently about elected officials who lost a vote, and then actively worked against the outcome. This amounts to trying to sabotage the council. It is wrong, wrong, wrong. Download PDF The majority rules General Henry Martyn Robert, the original author of Robert’s Rules of Order, expresses it this way: The great lesson…

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When and how do you pass the gavel?

By Ann Macfarlane / October 14, 2020 / Comments Off on When and how do you pass the gavel?
A person in a light blue shirt and dark tie holds a gavel in one hand, poised above a block on a white surface, ready to pass the gavel for the next decision.

The term “pass the gavel” refers to a situation where the chair of a meeting (the presider, the person running the meeting) temporarily gives up the position of chair (the authority to run the meeting) to allow another person to preside over the meeting. Download PDF Pass the gavel in a large meeting In a…

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Dealing with difficult members

By Ann Macfarlane / August 13, 2019 / Comments Off on Dealing with difficult members
an exasperated person upset at difficult board chair or member

Have you ever wished that you could just throw a member out of your nonprofit organization? Some people are so challenging that we wish we could! Here are some tips for dealing with difficult members. Download PDF Bylaws and policy regarding difficult members In an ideal world, everyone goes along with the rules. In reality…

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Sanctioning rogue board members

By Ann Macfarlane / July 19, 2019 /
A close-up of a gorilla with a stern expression, as if enforcing a sanction, against a blurred green background.

In general, people who serve on nonprofit boards or in local government are peaceful and compliant. But every once in a while, you get a rogue board member. What can be done? We believe that it’s important for boards to be prepared to sanction rogue members when necessary. Download PDF This is an unpleasant subject.…

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They threw him out of Parliament. You can sanction too.

By Ann Macfarlane / December 12, 2018 /
A golden scepter topped with a cross and intricate crown-like structure, featuring detailed engravings and ornate decorations along its length, symbolizing royal sanction.

High drama in the House of Commons as Member of Parliament expelled for the day.

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Motion to censure in Kaysville, Utah

By Ann Macfarlane / January 4, 2018 / Comments Off on Motion to censure in Kaysville, Utah
A red stamp with the word "CENSURE" in all capital letters, symbolizing a motion to censure, on a white background.

Here in Salt Lake City for the Utah School Boards Association, I find an interesting news item. The Kaysville city council is scheduled to pass a motion to censure a council member and request his resignation at this evening’s meeting. Read the Salt Lake Tribune news story here. Why pass a motion to censure? The…

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