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Executive committee action over-ride


Richard Jedwill
Posts: 4
 Richard Jedwill
Topic starter
Joined: 7 months ago

Is it in order for a member of a parent organization, at a regularly called meeting, to offer a motion to over-ride an action that was recently taken by its executive committee?  If so, after being seconded, what vote is required to pass such motion?

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Larry Cisar
Posts: 9
Active Member
Joined: 5 years ago

It depends. What do the Bylaws say about the power of the Executive Committee?

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Richard Jedwill
 Richard Jedwill
Joined: 7 months ago

Posts: 4

@lcisar

The following is a description of the issue at hand.  Our organization, called the Resident Forum, and which consists of all the residents of our retirement community, has a fund which is contributed to on a voluntary basis by residents.  This fund is managed by a standing committee of residents, and is distributed annually to all hourly employees of the community, based on a well-defined formula.  Since our community has a No Tipping Policy, this fund was established as an alternative way for residents to express their appreciation for services rendered.  This mechanism has been operating in this fashion for at least the last seventeen years.

Our Executive Committee is referred to as the Resident Council.  This Council recently established a new, separate fund, which would also be contributed to on a voluntary basis by residents, and which is to be distributed only to salaried management employees.  (The fund for hourly employees would remain in place, unchanged.)  The Council also named a committee to manage this new fund, all of whose members were also members of the Council, contrary to the way all other standing committees have been populated.  In addition, a chair of this new committee was appointed by the Council, which is contrary to a statement in our By-Laws.  All of these actions were taken by the Council basically without seeking any input from residents at large.

This whole issue has created a lot of consternation among many of the residents, although there are certainly other residents who support the decision.

I am considering offering the following motion at the next regularly scheduled Forum meeting, and wish to know whether such motion would be in order, and if so, what vote would be required to have such motion carried.

“I move that the Forum cancel the current Leadership Team Appreciation Fund, and abolish its associated committee, and in its place, create for 2021 only, a Leadership Team COVID-19 Recognition Fund, and direct the Resident Council to establish an ad-hoc committee of between five and seven members to develop all of the necessary procedures to manage such fund, with the members of such committee to be drawn from volunteer residents not on the Resident Council, and whose officers shall be selected by the committee members, as required by the Forum By-Laws.  Further, in order that a quorum be assured, that the election committee be charged with preparing a confidential paper ballot on which this motion is written, to be distributed to all residents, with the requirement that such ballot be returned by the June Forum meeting in order to be counted.”

The only statements in our By-Laws that relate to this issue state “The Council shall provide for Standing and Ad Hoc Committees as needed. … Each duly established Standing and Ad Hoc Committee shall select its own Chair, Vice-Chair, and Secretary from among its members.”

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Larry Cisar
Joined: 5 years ago

Active Member
Posts: 9

Based on what you say are your bylaws, your motion is not proper. The Resident Council has the power to set up committees. However, a point of order could be raised about how the chair of the new committee was appointed.

What I do not see is any authorization to collect or distribute contributions. Who has that power?

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Richard Jedwill
 Richard Jedwill
Joined: 7 months ago

Posts: 4

@lcisar

There is a statement in the resident handbook, published by management and distributed to all residents when they move into the community, that the Employee Appreciation Fund was established by the residents.  This fund has been operated by a standing committee, established by the Resident Council, without controversy since 2000.  I am not aware of any explicit authority granted to anyone to collect and distribute contributions to this fund.  The new recently established Leadership Appreciation Fund and its associated committee would operate in parallel, and ostensibly in similar fashion, to the Employee Appreciation Fund.

Would the following motion, offered in place of my original one (which I posted to you previously), be in order?  (Words added to the original proposed motion are in italics below, and words removed from the original proposed motion are grayed out.)

“I move that the Forum request the Resident Council to cancel the current Leadership Team Appreciation Fund, and abolish its associated committee, and in its place, create for 2021 only, a Leadership Team COVID-19 Recognition Fund, and direct the Resident Council to establish to be operated by an ad-hoc committee of between five and seven members charged with the responsibility to develop all of the necessary procedures to manage such fund, with the members of such committee to be drawn from volunteer residents not on the Resident Council, and whose officers shall be selected by the committee members, as required by the Forum By-Laws."

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Larry Cisar
Posts: 9
Active Member
Joined: 5 years ago

You can try it. Have a second ready. If the chair rules it out of order, be ready to appeal the ruling of the chair and have someone ready to second your appeal.

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Richard Jedwill
 Richard Jedwill
Joined: 7 months ago

Posts: 4

@lcisar

Thank you very much for your responses -- they have been very helpful.

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