Handy Guide On A Well Conducted Union Meeting

HANDY UNION GUIDE

to a well-conducted

UNION MEETING

 

Order of Business

ORDER OF BUSINESS

The following is the order in which the items of business should be called for and acted upon at a meeting:

  1. Pledge to the Flag.
  2. The roll-call of officers and noting of absentees.
  3. New applications.
  4. Report of the committee on applications and acting on same.
  5. Initiations.
  6. Reading of minutes and acting on same.
  7. Installation of officers.*
  8. Examination and introduction of visiting members.
  9. Reports of Secretary-Treasurer, including receipts and disbursements since the close of the last meeting.
  10. Communications, bills, etc.
  11. Reports of committees.
  12. Report on Organizing Activities.
  13. Anything for the good of the I.A.M.A.W. and discussion of subjects of an economic nature.
  14. Unfinished business.
  15. New business. Election of officers.*
  16. Reports of sick and disabled members and of relief committees.
  17. Reports of members are out of work and positions vacant.
  18. Adjournment.

COMMENT – The Executive Board of the Lodge should plan in advance of the meeting an agenda of matters to be reported on or otherwise brought before the membership.

*These items are only included in the order of business of appropriate meetings.

Call To Order - 1. Pledge to Flag, 2. Officer Roll Call

CALL TO ORDER CALL TO ORDER

ProcedureTwo raps of the gavel – The Lodge will be called to order. Three raps – Members will rise. One rap – Members will be seated at the hour appointed the President will give one rap of the gavel.

PRESIDENT – Members, we are about to open the Lodge. All those not qualified to participate in the meeting will please retire.

All persons, not members, will then withdraw. (Further details on the procedure will be found in the /AM Ritual.)

1. PLEDGE TO THE FLAG.

Procedure

President leads all present in the pledge.

2. ROLL CALL OF OFFICERS AND NOTING OF ABSENTEES.

Procedure

Recording Secretary calls the roll of Lodge officers.

3. Applications of New Members, 4. Report of Committee, 5. Initiation of New Members

3. NEW APPLICATIONS. NEW APPLICATIONS

PROCEDURE

Recording Secretary reads the list of new applicants since the last meeting.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Requests for information about individual applicants.
Motion 1) to consider an applicant for membership at the present meeting. (Requires a majority vote.)
Motion 2) to refer an application to the committee on applications for recommendations.

4. REPORT OF COMMITTEE ON APPLICATIONS AND ACTING ON SAME

PROCEDURE

Committee reports in its investigation of each applicant, confirms that the legally required Application for Membership
has been fully completed (all lodges must use Grand Lodge provided 8’h x 11 forms for the appropriate year, for
example, MROOO 1-07 for the calendar year 2007) and recommends acceptance or rejection of the individual applicant.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Motion to accept applications for membership.
(Requires a majority vote.)

5. INITIATIONS

PROCEDURE

President administers obligation to new members by following instructions given in lAM Ritual.

6. Minutes - Reading and Approval

6. READING OF MINUTES AND ACTING ON SAME

PROCEDURE

Recording Secretary reads the minutes of the previous membership meeting.
President says: “Are there any additions or corrections to the minutes?”

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Corrections are raised, discussed, and accepted if there are no objections. If there is an objection, a majority vote is required to make the correction.

Motion to accept the minutes “as read” or “as corrected.”

Comment

Reading of minutes is important because once accepted, they become the permanent record of Lodge’s actions for all future reference.

Minutes should be brief but contain enough detail for the member who was absent to understand what took place.

Minutes should emphasize what was done and decided at the meeting, not what was said. Details of a speech, a report or a discussion should be reported only if important for future reference.

The President should ask the Recording Secretary to stand up and make sure that he or she read the minutes in such a way that all present can hear them clearly.

7.Installation of Officers - 8.Introduction of Visitors

7. INSTALLATION OF OFFICERS

PROCEDURE

The IAM Constitution requires that the installation of newly elected Lodge officers take place at the first Lodge meeting in January. The lAM Ritual provides for the following ceremony:

The Past President, or any qualified member designated by the presiding officer, may officiate at the installation of Lodge officers. The members will stand and the officers will escort the officers-elect, each in rank, to the rostrum. The officers will stand in the rear of the officers-elect while the oath of office is administered.

PAST PRESIDENT- Members, do you accept the offices to which you have been elected?
OFFICERS-ELECT – We do.
PAST PRESIDENT- Raise your right hand and repeat after me:

Upon my sacred word of honor, I do solemnly promise that I will uphold the Constitution of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers and faithfully perform all the duties of the office to which I have been elected, so far as I am able; that I will attend all meetings of this Lodge during my term of office when possible to do so; that I will endeavor to advance the interests of the Association and when my successor is elected and installed, I will turn over to him (or her), all books, papers, funds, or other property of the Lodge that I may have. I further promise that I will never defraud this Lodge out of anything whatsoever, or allow it to be defrauded if within my power to prevent it. To all of this, I solemnly pledge my sacred word of honor.

8. EXAMINATION AND INTRODUCTION OF VISITING MEMBERS

PROCEDURE

Conductor-Sentinel has previously examined visiting members’ credentials or has been informed of the purpose of non-member’s presence.
President takes note of or introduces, all visitors.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

If a visitor is not an lAM member, President must request the consent of the membership.

Comment

If a visitor is there for the purpose of making a brief statement, the President may request consent to hear the presentation at this point in the meeting. If he or she has a longer message or is part of an education program, a later appearance would be appropriate.

9. Secretary-Treasurer's Report

9. REPORTS OF SECRETARY-TREASURER, INCLUDING RECEIPTS AND DISBURSEMENTS SINCE THE CLOSE OF LAST MEETING.

PROCEDURE

The financial report is made by the Secretary-Treasurer, depending upon the Lodge setup.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Questions for purpose of clarification.

MOTION to accept the report.

Comment

A good financial report should include:

  1. Balance on hand as of the last day of the previous month.
  2. All disbursements including total.
  3. Adjusted balance as of the date of the meeting.
  4. All savings and investment accounts.
  5. The total financial worth of Lodge monies.

Financial reports read at meetings are often difficult for a member to keep in mind or to understand. Therefore, the financial officer should consider utilizing the following devices as aids to understanding:

  1. After a reading of detailed figures of income and disbursement, recapitulated some of these figures under several general headings.
  2. Use of overhead or presentation software to present highlights of the report.
10. Communications & Bills

10. COMMUNICATIONS, BILLS, ETC.

PROCEDURE (Communications in general)

Communications to the Lodge or written on behalf of the lodge are read in whole or in part, or summarized for the membership by the Recording Secretary.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Requests for further details or clarification.
MOTION to take specific action,

  1. to take a specific action,
  2. to refer to unfinished or “new business,”
  3. to refer to an appropriate committee.

PROCEDURE (Bills)

Bills, supported by previous vouchers, and already approved under the IAM constitution, local bylaws, or previous minutes, are read by the Recording Secretary for the information of the members. No further vote is required.

Bills for expenditures not previously approved by the membership are read by the Recording Secretary, with the statement of amount, purpose, and payee.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Requests for further information.
MOTION

  1. to authorize payment,
  2. to refer to a committee for investigation and later action.

Comment
If possible, letters should have been read by the Executive Board or officers before the meeting. Letters requiring action should be read with a recommendation from the
Executive Board.

The Recording Secretary can summarize long or unimportant letters. Routine letters can be announced as received; they do not need to be read. However, all communications should be mentioned and made available for interested members to read after the meeting.

A letter on a subject which is the responsibility of some committee may be brought up in the report of that committee.

11. Executive Board & Committee Reports

11. REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

PROCEDURE

  1. The President calls for the reports of the Executive Board and of all other standing or special committees.
  2. The Executive Board report may be given by the Recording Secretary or any other Lodge officer and may include all or part of the Committee’s minutes.
  3. It is customary in many lodges to have the Business Representative or Representatives report at this point in the agenda.
  4. Also called for are reports from delegates to other bodies or participants in meetings and programs outside the Lodge.
  5. Any of the reports may include recommendations for Lodge action.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Requests for information or clarification.

MOTION

  1. to act on specific recommendations,
  2. to postpone action,
  3. to refer to the Executive Board or to any other committee for action or recommendations,
  4. to refer recommendations to “new business” for action,
  5. to receive or accept the report (when no action is appropriate.)

Comment

Reports must be carefully thought through beforehand. They should be informative but brief and clearly explain the highlights of the committee’s deliberations or the delegate’s experience. Recommendations for action should be stated in such a way that they may easily be made into a motion from the floor.

12. Report on Organizing Activites, 13. Good & Welfare

12. REPORT ON ORGANIZING ACTIVITIES

PROCEDURE

  1. The president calls for a Report on Organizing Activities by the local lodge.
  2. The report shall be made by the local’s Organizing Committee chairperson or member, the President of the lodge, Business Representative or other representative or officer.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Motions related to organizing can be made under “new business.”

Comment

Organizing new members must be a primary duty of every local lodge member. The Report on Organizing Activities is the opportunity to let members know what the local lodge is doing to organize new members, why it is important, and how they can help organize by volunteering for an active campaign or getting leads to the lodge Organizing Committee.

13. ANYTHING FOR THE GOOD OF THE IAM DISCUSSION OF SUBJECTS OF AN ECONOMIC NATURE

PROCEDURE

The President asks: “Is there anything under good and welfare?” At this time anything affecting the welfare of the Lodge may be discussed by a member. Reports on meetings and subjects which had not been planned for the agenda may be made here.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

No motions may be made.

Comment

Also appropriate are discussions which permit deliberations on subjects or policies which do not require immediate action or on which the members are not yet prepared to take action.

Whenever an action is desired, the matter may be referred to as “new business.”

This point on the agenda is often used to present a talk or start a discussion on some subject of general interest to the members. The Lodge education committee may have been given the responsibility for conducting this type of session.

The Lodge may wish to set a time limit for this particular part of the agenda and also agree on time limits for a discussion by members.

14. Unfinished Business

14. UNFINISHED BUSINESS

PROCEDURE

The President calls for continued discussion of subjects raised by motions made at previous meetings and requiring further action. The Recording Secretary is required to furnish a list of these subjects from previous minutes. The President asks: “What is your pleasure on the matter of _________ ?”

ACTION FROM FLOOR

MOTION

  1. to take some action on a subject which has been brought to the attention of the meeting by the President, to complete action initiated at a previous meeting,
  2. to postpone action to another meeting,
  3. to refer to Executive Board or to some other committee, for action or recommendation.

Comment

It is the joint responsibility of the President and the Recording Secretary to bring to the attention of the meeting all unfinished business from previous meetings. A member would be expected to raise an item of unfinished business only if it had been overlooked by the President.

To expedite the business of a meeting, and to maintain a consistency that is fair and easily understood, the Lodge should follow the Rules of Order contained in the IAM Constitution. These rules are usually sufficient to guide the chair on all motions, amendments, questions, and other actions likely to occur in a Lodge meeting. The President should review these rules from time to time in order to become thoroughly acquainted with them.

Some Selected Excerpts
from the
Rules of Order:

• A motion to be entertained by the presiding officer must be seconded, and the mover, as well as the seconder, must rise and be recognized by the chair.
• A motion shall not be subject to debate until it has been stated by the chair.
• Any member having made a motion can withdraw it by consent of his or her second, but a motion once debated cannot be withdrawn except by a majority vote.
• A motion to amend an amendment shall be in order, but no motion to amend an amendment to an amendment shall be permitted.
• If a question has been amended, the question on the amendment has been amended, the question on the amendment has been offered, the question shall then be put as follows: (1) Amendment to the amendment. (2) Amendment. (3) Original proposition.
• The presiding officer shall not speak on any subject unless he or she retires from the chair, except on points of order, and in the case of a tie he or she shall have the deciding vote. Should the presiding officer retire from the chair to speak on any subject before the lodge, he or she shall not return to the chair until that subject matter is properly disposed of.
• When an appeal is made from the decision of the chair, the Vice President shall then act as chairperson; said appeal shall then be stated by the chairperson to the meeting in these words: “Shall the decision of the chair be sustained as the decision of this lodge?” The member then will have the right to state the grounds of appeal, and the chair will give reasons for his or her decision; thereupon the members will proceed to vote on the appeal without further debate, and it shall require a majority to sustain an appeal.

15. New Business. Election of Officers

15. NEW BUSINESS. ELECTION OF OFFICERS

PROCEDURE

The President calls for motions on any new business. The Recording Secretary reports items that have been
referred to “new business” from earlier in the meeting.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

MOTION

  1. to take action.
  2. to postpone action to another meeting.
  3. to refer to the Executive Board or to some other committee for action or recommendation.

Comment

It is at this point that each of the recommendations of the Executive Board (not already acted upon at the time of the report) should be brought before the meeting for discussion and action.

It is primarily under “new” and “unfinished business” that the membership meeting performs its basic function as a legislative body acting on the recommendations of the elected executive officers.

At this point on the agenda, the nominations for Lodge officers shall take place at the first Lodge meeting in November (or 1st meeting in September at the option of the Local Lodge) provided the officers’ terms have expired. Election of officers shall be held at the first Lodge meeting in December (or the 1st meeting in October at the option of the Local Lodge).

All Lodge officers should be acquainted with the provisions of Article B of the IAM Constitution governing the nomination and election of officers and should guide the Lodge in strictly following these provisions.

16. Relief Committee Report, 17. Report on Unemployed Members

16. REPORTS OF SICK AND DISABLED MEMBERS AND OF RELIEF COMMITTEE

PROCEDURE

The President calls for the report of the relief or welfare committee. This is also the occasion for acquainting the Lodge with the illness and hospitalization of members.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

MOTION

  1. to take appropriate action

17. REPORTS OF MEMBERS OUT OF WORK AND POSITIONS VACANT.

PROCEDURE

President calls on anyone who is knowledgeable about the current situation relating to the employment of members and to industries and crafts within IAM jurisdiction. Usually, the Business Representative will want to report on this subject and may include in his or her report other subjects involving his or her responsibilities or of concern to the Lodge.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Motion to refer to Executive Board or to another committee any items in the report requiring action or recommendation.

18. Adjournment

18. ADJOURNMENT

PROCEDURE

When there is no further business, the President may request a motion to adjourn. After the vote, President adjourns the Lodge until the date set for the next meeting.

ACTION FROM FLOOR

Motion to adjourn (No debate permissible)

THE EXECUTIVE BOARD

THE EXECUTIVE BOARD

The Most Important Committee in a Lodge

“Teamwork” among officers is the key to a strong and successful union. Teamwork is possible only if the Lodge officers meet together as an Executive Board to discuss the needs, policies, and programs of the Lodge and to reach an agreement on recommendations which are then reported to the Lodge meeting for membership action, after any necessary further discussion.

This means that a Lodge Executive Board should meet regularly a few days in advance of the regular membership meeting to review the correspondence, to plan the meeting agenda, take note of Lodge finances, and recommend action by the membership which will carry out the responsibilities and programs of the Lodge.

As chief executive officer of the Lodge, the President is both Lodge leader and “quarterback” of the “team” of elected officers. The President provides leadership to the Lodge, not as a dictator, but through and with the cooperation of the entire Executive Board. Decisions and recommendations of the Executive Board become the President’s decisions and recommendations.

BASIC PUBLICATIONS THAT LODGE OFFICERS SHOULD HAVE AVAILABLE

IAM Constitution and Ritual
IAM Manual for Recording Secretaries
IAM Financial Officers Reference Manual
IAM Officers’ Guide
IAM Owner’s Manual
IAM New Member Kit
IAM Education Handbook
Handbook for Pre-Retirement Session in the IAM
Guide for Older Workers and Retired Members Programs
Apprenticeship Policy Manual
Ready or Not- Retirement Planning Handbook
Community Services – Members Helping Members, Families, and Communities

References on Parliamentary Procedure:
IAM Constitution — Rules of Order – Roberts Rules of Order
Parliamentary Procedure at a Glance – 0. Garfield Jones

HANDY GUIDE TO A WELL CONDUCTED UNION MEETING
OfficersGuideToRunningMeetings_OPT

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