At Area 53 Assemblies, we use in a general way procedures and customs that are based on “Robert’s Rules of Order” for parliamentary procedures. On the website, there is a brief overview of these procedures in the GSR School materials.
More on general guidelines published at www.robertsrules.org:
- Obtain the floor (the right to speak) by being the first to stand when the person speaking has finished; state Mr./Madam Chairperson. Raising your hand means nothing, and standing while another has the floor is out of order! Must be recognized by the Chair before speaking.
- Debate can not begin until the Chair has stated the motion or resolution and asked “are you ready for the question?” If no one rises, the chair calls for the vote.
- Before the motion is stated by the Chair (the question) members may suggest modification of the motion; the mover can modify as he pleases, or even withdraw the motion without consent of the seconder; if mover modifies, the seconder can withdraw the second.
- The “immediately pending question” is the last question stated by the Chair! Motion/Resolution – Amendment – Motion to Postpone
The member moving the “immediately pending question” is entitled to preference to the floor.
- No member can speak twice to the same issue until everyone else wishing to speak has spoken to it once.
- All remarks must be directed to the Chair. Remarks must be courteous in language and deportment – avoid all personalities, never allude to others by name or to motives.
- The agenda and all committee reports are merely recommendations! When presented to the assembly and the question is stated, debate begins and changes occur.