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33 Standing Orders of meetings and the powers and responsibilities of the Chairperson
The following Standing Orders must be observed at general meetings, meetings of the Board, and all committee meetings of the Co-operative:
(1) Discussion on a motion is commenced by a mover of the motion who may talk for up to ten minutes and must show cause to the satisfaction of the chairperson for any extension of time. Thereafter discussion may take any of the forms in Clauses 1 (b) to 1 (i) below.
(a) Subsequent speakers to the motion shall first demonstrate to the chairperson that they have information or wisdom that adds to the discussion.
(b) The chairperson shall seek speakers with information on the motion.
(c) The chairperson shall interrupt any speaker talking on matters irrelevant to the motion and request that the speaker show relevance or cease talking on irrelevant matters.
(d) Subsequent speakers are allowed up to five minutes, and after all speakers have finished, the mover of the motion or a mover of an amendment to a motion has five minutes to reply and immediately after this the question must be put by the chair. The meeting may however, by simple majority, extend in a particular instance, the time permitted by this rule.
(e) The chairperson or a delegate will record by show of hands those desirous of speaking to the motion and will allow those speakers to talk by turn, subject to Clauses 1 (g) and 1 (h).
(f) The chairperson may allow another person to intrude in the sequence if they have a contribution that is appropriate, in context, to be said at that moment.
(g) At times, the productive verve in the group may allow the chairperson to let the meeting flow with a spontaneous order of contributors and even more than one talking at once, given that this remains functional and productive. This energy may spontaneously evolve into two or more parallel discussions for a time.
(h) The mover of the motion or the mover of an amendment to a motion may be allowed by the chairperson to contribute to the discussion during the discussion of the motion, and it is incumbent upon the chairperson to decide as to the appropriateness of this. An example would be the correction of a major point that is misleading the group and skewing discussion.
(i) All amendments must be within the spirit and scope of the original motion, and must be submitted in writing, if requested by the chairperson.
(j) If an amendment to an original motion is proposed, no second amendment may be considered until the first amendment is disposed of.If an amendment is carried, the proposition, as so amended, displaces the original proposition and may itself be amended.
(k) Only one amendment may be submitted to the meeting for discussion at one time.
(l) No discussion may be closed by a resolution, that is, there is no use of 'gags' and 'guillotines', except for a special resolutions.
(m) Minute taking is controlled by the chairperson and is to be delegated to one or more members.
(n) With the consent of the chairperson, speakers may request an item of relevance to the business be added to the minutes in their name.
(o) Any member or visitor to the meeting may speak on any issue at a meeting with the permission of the chairperson, subject to any conditions imposed by the chairperson.
(p) The chairperson:
(i) may warn a member or members who is/are disrupting the meeting, to cease disrupting the meeting, and that if they continue disrupting they will be named, and if named and they continue disrupting, they may be removed from the meeting site;
(ii) may name a member or members who is/are disrupting the meeting, and warn that if they continue disrupting they may be removed from the meeting site;
(iii) may receive a motion to the meeting by a member and one seconder to name a member or members and if so, shall put that motion, and if passed by a two thirds majority of members present, such member or members will be named;
(iv) shall see that all members named are recorded in the minutes of that meeting;
(v) may, if the member(s) continues to be disruptive, take a motion from one or more members to ban the said member(s) and if passed by a two thirds majority of members present, the disruptive member(s) can be banned immediately from the meeting site and banned from the site of up to two following meetings;
(vi) shall see that all members banned from a meeting site are recorded in the minutes of that meeting.
(vii) shall take a motion from the meeting from one or more members that the chairperson stand aside as chairperson, and such motion shall be put and such motion requires to be accepted by a two thirds majority of members present.
(2) The power of the chairperson:
(a) imposes upon the chairperson duties and responsibilities as set out in this Clause;
(b) invests that person with the power to exercise control of the meeting in accordance with the Societies rules.
(c) A chairperson must:
(i) be consistent, impartial and without bias;
(ii) refrain from entering discussion without standing aside from the chair;
(iii) ensure minority opinion is heard and understood by all members present;
(iv) seek the consent of the meeting in determining the content and order of the agenda and the consent of the meeting in altering the order of the agenda;
(v) ensure that a person raising a point of order immediately and concisely state the point of order and confine their comments to the point of order raised; to identify and warn members disrupting the meeting by raising invalid points of order;
(vi) take particular care that her/his rulings on points of order are impartial and consistent;
(vii) must ensure that any member voting on a proposal, motion or amendment to a motion was physically in the room and attending to the discussion on a proposal, motion or amendment to a motion, otherwise such member will be ineligible to vote on that proposal, motion or amendment to a motion.
(3) A chairperson may not rule out of order any motion which is within the competence of the meeting where all necessary incidental conditions have been observed. When a proposal, motion and an amendment to a motion has been accepted by the chairperson for consideration by the meeting, both before the motion is discussed and before a vote is taken, the chairperson must re-state the proposal, motion or amendment to a motion exactly, and ensure that all members present understand firstly, the wording and secondly, that a vote is being taken.