ADJOURN SINE DIE (adjourn
without day) - to adjourn without expecting to reassemble; the final meeting
of a convention or organization.
ADJOURNED MEETING - a
meeting which is actually a continuation of a regular meeting; in fact a long
BALLOT - a device (such as a slip of paper)
for protecting the secrecy of a vote.
BOND (OR BONDlNG) - the insuring of an
officer (especially one who handles funds or signs contracts) to protect the
organization from liability due to error of accident or intent.
BYLAW - a law or regulation of an
organization, which deals with its internal organization. Ordinarily it should
be easier to change than a constitution; more difficult to change than a
CAUCUS - a meeting of the
leaders to determines policy or agree on candidates.
CHAIR - the presiding
officer or chairman.
CHARTER - a written
instrument, generally in the nature of a grant of authority supporting the
existence of a particular organization or branch.
CODIFY - to systematize or
classify the rules or By-Laws of an organiza- tion or the laws of a city, state
COMMIT - to refer an issue
to a committee for its report and rec- ommendations.
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE [HOUSE] - a committee consisting of the entire membership. Used to enable the entire
assembly to discuss a matter in a less formal manner.
CONSTITUTION - The
statement of basic principles and purposes indicating the nature of the
organization and its reason for being.
DECORUM - to behave with
propriety, to conduct oneself in a good manner.
DE FACTO - "in fact"; that
person or that committee which in fact has the power or responsibility, regard-
less of who has it in theory.
DILATORY - to engage in
action, the purpose of which is just to delay.
EXECUTIVE SESSION - a
meeting of a committee or other body, with the public excluded. In a public
body, no legislative action can be taken in such sessions.
EX OFFICIO - an office
held automatically because one holds another office; as the U.S. Vice President
is automatically President of Senate.
EXPULSION - to expel or force out a member.
EXPUNGE - to delete from
the record, by ruling out rather than by erasure.
GERMANE - to be relevant to
the motion being discussed.
MAJORITY - a number one
more than half.
MINORITY - a number one
less than half.
PLURALITY - in elections,
the candidate who receive! the most votes, yet may not have a majority.
PREVIOUS QUESTION - a
motion, which asks that the assembly vote at once on the motion on the floor.
PRO TEM (pro tempore) -
temporarily. Usually a person who serves in the absence of the regular per- son;
such as the President Pro tern of the U.S. Senate is a Senator chosen to be
presiding officer in the absence of the Vice President of the U.S.
PROXY - giving another person the authority to vote
for you in your absence.
QUESTION -the issue or
motion presently being considered.
QUORUM - the number of
members required to be present in order to conduct a legal meeting.
RATIFY - to approve or
sanction an action.
RECOMMIT- to send back to
REFER - same as to commit;
send to committee.
RENEW - to place on the
floor again a motion previously passed or defeated.
RIDER - a clause or
section attached to a motion which is not directly related to the motion; and
which very likely might not be approved as a separate motion.
RULE - see STANDING RULE
SERIATIM - to consider a
report or motion by paragraph rather than in its entirety.
SPECIAL COMMITTEE - a
committee appointed to study and make recommendations on a particular topic.
STANDING COMMITTEE - a
committee, which is permanent, often established by the By-Laws, with a specific
function to perform: such as Program Committee or Membership Committee. While
the committee it- self may be permanent, its membership is not.
STANDING RULE - a law or
order dealing with matters of business organization or procedure.
TELLERS - individuals
officially designated to count ballots or votes.
VIVA VOCE VOTE - a voice
YEAS AND NAYS - the older
expression for a roll call vote.