Standing Rule Amendment 3A Awaiting Action
To amend the speaking order process to take requests for information in the order in which they are received by the presiding officer, rather than moving them to the front of the speaking order.
Rule 3. Order of Business and Debate
H. Speaking Order/Closing Debate
Requests for information shall be considered in the order in which they are received by the presiding officer. They will not take precedence over motions or debate.
No member speaking on a question may move to close debate.
A motion to close debate shall apply to no more than the single question immediately before the Representative Assembly.
Before a motion to close debate will be considered, the chair will recognize at least one speaker in support and one speaker in opposition if speakers have called in on the motion on the floor.
NEA Standing Rule 3(B) states that “The annual session of the Representative Assembly shall be conducted in accordance with provisions of the NEA Constitution, Bylaws, and these Standing Rules. Matters not specifically governed in these documents shall be governed by Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised.” As the NEA governing documents do not address consideration of requests for information, Robert’s Rules governs current practice.
Under Roberts Rules of Order, a request for information is a request directed to the chair, or through the chair to another person, for information relevant to the business at hand. The request takes precedence and must be addressed before the chair recognizes speakers in favor or in opposition to the motion at hand. (RONR 10th ed., p. 376). Requests for information called in during debate immediately move to the front of the speaking order. Once all requests for information and parliamentary inquiries are addressed, the chair turns to speakers for and against, rotating one speaker in favor and one in opposition.
In 2016, the chair recognized 181 requests for information. The number of requests for information in previous recent years was: 219 in 2013, 223 in 2014 and 219 in 2015.
Should the proposed amendment pass, it would supersede Robert’s Rules of Order. Under the amendment, requests for information would be taken in the order they are received, along with speakers for and against the motion. Thus, if a request for information were received, the chair would continue to call on all speakers for and against already in the queue prior to the request for information. The chair would then take the request for information followed by any other speakers or requests called in after the request for information.
Arlene Pavey, CA
Relevant Strategic Goal (G) or Core Function (CF)