UUCSS Policy – Congregational Meetings

Adopted October 28, 2020

A.  Before a congregational meeting, the President will consult with those planning to present proposals to determine how the congregation can best be informed about the upcoming votes.  Options the President should consider include:

1.  Communicating to the congregation about the expected proposals.

2.  Holding a town-hall meeting to convey information and invite discussion about the proposals.

3.  Ensuring there is sufficient time for discussion at the annual or special meeting for all voices to be heard.

4.  Recommending that the proposal be postponed to a later meeting to allow one or more of the above options to be used.

If at all possible, the Secretary should include in the notice of the meeting the text of any resolutions or decisions to be considered, slates of candidates, and any proposed budget.  If any of that information is not available to include in the notice, it should be made available to the congregation as soon as possible before the meeting begins.  The notice should also include instructions on absentee balloting.

Childcare and ASL interpretation for the meeting will be arranged upon prior request.

The Secretary will prepare a roster of the members who are eligible to vote.

B.  The President will determine at the beginning of a meeting whether a quorum of members eligible to vote exists.  If amendments are proposed during the meeting that, in the opinion of the President, change substantially the effect of the budget, resolution, or other decision, the President may decide not to count any absentee ballot votes on that question.  The President will also  determine whether, without those ballots, a quorum still exists.  If there is no longer a quorum, a vote on that question must be deferred to a later meeting.

C.  For each item of business, the President will invite a member to present it.  The President will then invite questions for clarification, followed by discussion of the proposal.  The President may set a time limit for each speaker.  Once anyone who wishes to be heard has had the opportunity to speak once, the President will call for a vote, which may be done by voice, a show of hands, or electronic means. 

D.  If any amendment is proposed during the discussion, the same process as in section 5.C will apply.

E.  The President will not ordinarily entertain any proposals not germane to items on the agenda.    

F.  A member may appeal any ruling of the President.  If another member seconds the appeal, the President will allow discussion and hold a vote, following the procedures in paragraph C.

G.  If there is more than one candidate for one position, that vote will be taken separately from a vote on the slate of candidates who are unopposed.  The candidate with the highest number of votes takes the position.  If there are two or more at-large positions and more candidates than positions, voters would vote for the same number of candidates as there are positions; those with the most votes would take the positions.

H.  Minutes of all Congregational Meetings will be read, corrected, and approved within one month of the meeting.