Standing Orders for SEA NEC and F&GP meetings
Formally adopted at the annual conference held on June 25th 2011
Amended in light of changes to the meeting pattern in 2015
The NEC quorum is 8 members. The F&GP quorum is 5 members. Unless otherwise decided, all F&GP meetings shall start at 11.00 am and NEC meetings at 12.15pm. . If within half an hour a quorum is not present, the meeting shall proceed but not decide.
2. Order of Business
An Agenda shall be prepared by the General Secretary and shall be circulated to members by no less than 7 days before the meeting. All items thereon shall take precedence over all other business. Any member wishing to introduce business for consideration of the meeting should notify the General Secretary in advance or else the Chair at the beginning of the relevant meeting.
3. Suspension of Standing Orders
In the event of any matter of urgency, however, the Chair may accept a motion for the suspension of Standing Orders. The member moving such suspension must clearly state the nature and urgency of his business, the number(s) of the Standing orders affected, and the length of time (not exceeding 30 minutes) he/she desires such suspension to last. No suspension shall take place except by a two thirds majority vote of the members present.
The minutes shall be taken by the Minutes Secretary or in his/her absence by a member nominated by the Chair. The minutes of the previous meeting shall be circulated to the members with the Agenda. After confirmation of the minutes by a majority of those present, they shall be signed by the Chair as a correct record and members shall then be at liberty to ask any questions in regard to matters arising out of them. Such questions shall be allowed for purposes of information only, and no debate on the policy outlined in the minutes shall take place.
5. Selection of Speakers
The Chair should use his/her discretion to encourage active participation by all members in the meeting. Members wishing to speak should indicate so to the Chair by raising their hand. When more than one member indicates that she/he wishes to speak, the first to indicate shall be given precedence, the decision resting with the Chair. The Chair should also involve all those members present at the meeting as to the length of a particular item on the agenda, whenever the number of speakers wishing to speak might jeopardise discussion of subsequent items.
6. Chair’s ruling
If the Chair calls a member to order, or for any other purpose connected with the proceedings, the member speaking will stop speaking immediately. No other member should speak at this point. The ruling of the Chair on any question under the Standing Orders, or on the points of order or explanation, shall then be given and regarded as final, unless challenged by not less than four members, and unless two thirds of the members present vote to the contrary. If there is a challenge to the Chair’s ruling in accordance with the above, then that part of the meeting shall be chaired by the Vice Chair, or in her/his absence, by the Organising Secretary.
If any member interrupts another while addressing the meeting, or uses abusive or unacceptable language, or causes disturbance at any of the meetings, and refuses to obey the Chair when called to order, he/she shall be named by the Chair. She/he shall thereupon be expelled from the room and shall not be allowed to enter again until an apology satisfactory to the meeting be given.