This is a quick guide on how to demand that the group consider its business in the proper order.
- What motion should you use to require that business be considered in the proper order?
Use the motion Call for the Orders of the Day.
- What should you say when making this motion?
Say: “I call for the orders of the day.”
- When can you make this motion?
You can make this motion anytime that certain other motions are not on the floor, including the motions to Fix the Time to Which to Adjourn, Adjourn, Recess, Reconsider, or Suspend the Rules (to change the order of business).
- Can you interrupt another speaker to make this motion?
- Does someone have to say, “Second” after this motion is proposed?
- Can people debate the pros and cons of this motion?
- Can this motion be amended?
- How many votes does this motion need to pass?
None. The proper order of business must be followed if even one member makes this demand. If the group does not want to follow the proper order, at least two-thirds of the members present and voting must vote not to do so.
- Early in an all-day meeting, a member makes the motion to postpone to a specific time in order to postpone an item of business related to the renovation of headquarters until 2:45 PM—a change in the order in which it was supposed to be considered. This motion for a change in the order (a special order) is adopted.
- When 2:45 PM arrives, the group is in the middle of considering a different motion. So, a member stands and without seeking recognition says, “Madame Chair, I call for the orders of the day.”
- The Chair replies, “The orders of the day have been called for. A motion related to the renovation of headquarters was postponed until 2:45 PM today. It is now 2:45 PM, and the motion before you is the motion regarding the renovation of headquarters. I will repeat that motion for you now.”
- After consideration of the motion regarding the renovation of headquarters, the group resumes business where it left off prior to that motion. The Chair says, “Prior to the orders of the day being called for, the members were considering the following motion….”
What the Pros Know
- If the presiding officer is vigilant about performing his duty to announce the business that is before the group in the proper order, there should be no need to make this motion. (For example, in the scenario described above, the Chair should have been watching the clock, noticing that it was 2:45 PM, and making sure that the headquarters renovation was considered at that time.)
- The Call for the Orders of the Day is a call to follow the proper order of business—the adopted order. It is not a demand that the group consider a certain item of business unless that item is the next item in the set order.
- If a group is not neglecting a special order at its proper time, then a member should wait until no motion is on the floor to Call for the Orders of the Day.
- If a group is not neglecting a special order at its proper time, the group can finish consideration of a pending question and then proceed to consider the business that is properly in order at that time.
- If the Chair senses that the members would prefer to disregard the proper order of business, he can on his own initiative ask the group if they want to proceed with the orders of the day or continue considering the matter that is on the floor. If the members want to disregard the orders of the day, two-thirds of the members present and voting must agree to do so.
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