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Brainteasers - Robert's Rules of Order Q&A (Archive 2016)

 

Robert's Rules of Order Q&A

Parliamentary Procedure Brainteasers (Archive 2016)

 

For current parliamentary procedure brainteasers, visit www.jimslaughter.com/brainteasers.cfm 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: If a member disagrees with a ruling of the chair, how long under Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition) does the member have to Appeal from the Decision of the Chair?

 

ANSWER: The Appeal must be made immediately, "at the time of the ruling. "IF any debate or business has intervened, it is too late to appeal." RONR § 24 (p. 257).

 

 

Difficulty Level 3             

QUESTION: If your organization follows Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), how many times is each member entitled to speak on a debatable Appeal from the Decision of the Chair?

 

ANSWER: Once, except for the presiding officer who may speak twice. RONR § 24 (p. 258).

 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: If a matter is properly postponed from one meeting to the following meeting, using Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), and the item is not made a Special Order for the meeting, what is it?

 

ANSWER: A General Order. RONR § 41 (p. 358).

 

 

Difficulty Level 3             

QUESTION: Under Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), when should the chair of a meeting ask: "Is there any unfinished business?"

 

ANSWER: Never. "The chair should not announce the heading of Unfinished Business and General Orders unless the minutes show that there is some business to come up under it.  . . . He should not ask, "Is there any unfinished business?" but should state the question on the first item of business that is due to come up under the heading . . . ." ." RONR § 41 (p. 359).

 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: When using Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, in a motion in the form of a resolution are the resolved clauses amended first or last?

 

ANSWER: First. "In the consideration of a resolution having a preamble, the preamble is always amended last, since changes in the resolving clauses may require changes in the preamble." RONR § 10(p. 108).

 

 

Difficulty Level 3             

QUESTION: Must a resolution have WHEREAS clauses under Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised?

 

ANSWER: "It should be emphasized that neither rule nor custom requires a resolution to have a preamble, and one should not be used merely for the sake of form." RONR § 10 (p. 107).

 

Difficulty Level 5             

QUESTION: At a meeting that follows Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, an amendment to a legislative agenda is proposed. A member Objects to the Consideration of the amendment. Is the Objection to Consideration in order?

 

ANSWER: No. An Objection to the Consideration of a Question can only be applied to original main motions, and not to subsidiary motions. RONR § 26 (p. 268).

 

 

Difficulty Level 3             

QUESTION: What is the vote required for an Objection to the Consideration of a Question under RONR?

 

ANSWER: A two-thirds vote against consideration is required to sustain the objection. RONR § 26 p. 268).

 

 

Difficulty Level 3             

QUESTION: Under Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised is the chair's reply to a parliamentary inquiry subject to an appeal?

 

ANSWER: No, since it is an opinion, not a ruling. RONR § 33 (p. 294).

 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: In Roberts what is the effect of a motion being withdrawn?  Can the withdrawn motion be made again at the same meeting?

 

ANSWER: "After a motion has been withdrawn, the situation is as though it had never been made; therefore, the same motion can be made again at the same meeting." RONR § 33 (p. 297).

 

 

Difficulty Level 3             

QUESTION: If your parliamentary authority is Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), can a members speaking in debate yield their time to another speaker?

 

ANSWER: No. "Rights in regard to debate are not transferable. Unless the organization has a special rule on the subject, a member cannot yield any unexpired portion of his time to another member . . . . " RONR § 43 (p. 388).

 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: Under Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), what is the missing term in the following sentence with regards to debate?  "When the member finishes speaking, he _______ the floor by resuming his seat."

 

ANSWER: "yields"  RONR § 3 (p. 30).

 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: Under Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), must the chair strictly alternative in debate between persons speaking pro and con on a debatable motion?

 

ANSWER: No. "In cases where the chair knows that persons seeking the floor have opposite opinions on the question, the chair should let the floor alternate, as far as possible, between those favoring and those opposing the measure."  RONR § 3 (p. 31).

 

 

Difficulty Level 3             

QUESTION: Can a member using Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition) rise to claim preference in being recognized after the chair has recognized another member to speak?

 

ANSWER: No. However, they can raise a Point of Order to that effect. RONR § 3(p. 31).

 

 

Difficulty Level 5             

QUESTION: If your parliamentary authority is Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), what motions are not prevented by the adoption of an order for the Previous Question?

 

ANSWER: Privileged or incidental motions. RONR § 16 (p. 198).

 

 

Difficulty Level 5             

QUESTION: What is the qualified form of the motion for the Previous Question?

 

ANSWER: Using Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), it is a motion to close debate that is applied to include consecutively any series beginning with the immediately pending question.  RONR § 16 (p. 199). 

 

 

Difficulty Level 3             

QUESTION: Do annual meetings approve minutes, if your parliamentary authority is Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition)?

 

ANSWER: No.  "Minutes of one annual meeting should not be held for action until the next one a year later." RONR § 9 (p. 95).  Instead, the executive board or a committee appointed for that purpose should be authorized to approve the minutes.  RONR § 48 (p. 474-75). 

 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: If your parliamentary authority is Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), can errors in minutes be corrected at any time?

 

ANSWER: Yes.  "If the existence of an error or material omission in the minutes becomes reasonably established after their approval--even many years later--the minutes can then be corrected by means of the motion to Amend Something Previously Adopted, which requires a two-thirds vote, or a majority vote with notice, or the vote of a majority of the entire membership, or unanimous consent."  RONR § 48 (p. 475). 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: Although elections are often voted on by ballot, if your parliamentary authority is Robert's Rules of Order how is an election by voice handled?

 

ANSWER: If there is more than one nominee, the candidates are voted on in the order they were nominated as follows:

 

CHAIR: As many as are in favor of Bob Smith for Treasurer, say AYE . . . . Those opposed, say NO . . . . The ayes have it and Bob Smith is elected Treasurer.

 

OR:

 

CHAIR: The noes have it and Bob Smith is not elected. Those in favor of the Mary Jones for Treasurer, say AYE . . . . Those opposed say NO . . . .

 

As soon as one nominee receives a majority vote, the election is over and there is no vote on the remaining nominees (unless there are multiple seats to fill).

 

RONR § 46 (p. 442).

 

 

Difficulty Level 5             

QUESTION: If your parliamentary authority is Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), can an election be taken by voice or unanimous consent (and no one objects) if the bylaws require a vote by ballot?

 

ANSWER: No.  "The assembly cannot make valid a viva-voce election if the bylaws require the election to be by ballot." RONR § 46 (p. 443).

 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: If your parliamentary authority is Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), how far can a motion at one meeting be postponed through the motion to Postpone to a Certain Time?

 

ANSWER: It depends on how frequently the organization meets. If there will not be more than a quarterly time interval before the next meeting, a motion could be postponed until, but not beyond, the next meeting.  If more than a quarterly time interval will pass between meetings, a motion cannot be postponed beyond the current meeting. RONR § 14 (p. 183).

 

 

Difficulty Level 4             

QUESTION: If your parliamentary authority is Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th Edition), how far can a motion be temporarily delayed through the use of the motion to Lay on the Table if another matter of urgency arises ?

 

ANSWER: It depends on how frequently the organization meets. If there will not be more than a quarterly time interval before the next meeting, a tabled motion must be brought back before the end of the next regular meeting or it dies.  If more than a quarterly time interval will pass between meetings, a motion not taken from the table dies at the end of the current session. RONR § 17 (p. 215).

 

Charts and articles are intended to provide general information on parliamentary procedure and are not legal advice or a legal opinion.