Parliamentary Procedure


​For the good of the order

By Daniel Olson, Assistant Legal Counsel, League of Wisconsin Municipalities

​Making a Motion 

Motions are an important vehicle for debating policy decisions, even for small or medium sized bodies like city councils, village boards and their committees. However, it is important to note that a motion is not required for discussion of an issue.  Read the complete article here or in the April 2018 edition of the Municipality.

Motions:  Amendment

This article supplies a few guidelines for amending motions.  Read the complete article here or in the May issue of the Municipality.

Presiding Officers and Agendas

There must be someone responsible for administering group discussion for it to be consistently effective and fair; for it to be democratic. That responsibility belongs to the presiding officer and begins with the agenda.  Read the complete article here or in the June issue of the Municipality.

Discussion Rules for Chairpersons

One general statement that may surprise some members of municipal governing bodies and other subunits, is the right of the chair to participate just as any other member of the body. So, if a chairperson is a member of the body, s/he has all the rights of participation as any other member, including the right to make motions, second motions, participate in discussion, and vote. Read the complete article here or in the July issue of the Municipality.

Discussion Rules for Members

Discussion rules specific to the chairperson or presiding officer were highlighted here last month. This month the spotlight shifts to some of the key discussion rules for all members of a body operating under Robert’s Rules of Order.
It must be noted first that the general purpose of discussion rules for meetings like Robert’s or others is not to limit or stifle discussion.  Read the full article here or in the August 2018 issue of the Municipality.