Parliamentary procedure resources

April 11, 2013

The productivity of meetings can be improved when members have an understanding of the rules that govern them. There is a hierarchy of rules that govern organizations and include (from top to bottom) Federal and State Laws; Article of incorporation; Bylaws; Special Rules of Order and Parliamentary Authority. 

Rules derived from state laws for public bodies and corporate documents for nonprofits that  determine the purpose and scope of an organization are difficult to change. Bylaws and special rules of order are lower in the hierarchy of rules and are as easy to change as the organization allows. 

Parliamentary rules that govern meeting processes such as bringing business to the board, deliberating and making decisions are part of the governing rules for an organization described in its parliamentary authority. The most commonly used parliamentary authority is Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised (currently in its 11th edition). 

Members who use parliamentary procedure correctly can get the business of the organization accomplished efficiently. Below you will find articles to help answer your parliamentary questions and links to helpful references and activities.

What is a Parliamentary Authority?

What is Roberts Rules of Order?

Roles of Board Members (The chair, the members and the public during open meetings)

How Do You Handle a Motion?

What does it mean to "second" a motion?

Bringing back a motion in the same meeting:  What is a motion to reconsider? 

Bringing back a motion at a different meeting: What is the motion to rescind?

Meeting Minutes: Suggestions for keeping an accurate record

Meeting Minutes Made Easy - Part 1: Components of minutes

Meeting Minutes Made Easy - Part 2: Correct language while recording

Committee of the whole: Suggestions for organizing an effective committee of the whole

Treasurer's Report: Approving unaudited financial reports is not advised

What does "ex-officio" really mean?

Becoming a Parliamentarian 

Electronic Meetings: Meeting Rules & What boards can use them

Agenda Basics: The importance of the agenda

Developing a "Purposeful" Agenda: Part 1 and Part 2

Making a parliamentary inquiry, request for information or other request during a meeting: Part 1 & Part 2

Basics of Bylaws

Non-profit Bylaws: What should be included

Planning & Zoning: Planning Commission Sample Bylaws 

Planning & Zoning:How_to_Take_Minutes_for_Administrative_Decisions.pdf

The roll-call vote: Part 1 & Part 2

Youth: Basic Parliamentary Procedure for 4-H Clubs

Youth: Parliamentary Procedure is a skill youth will use throughout their lifetime

Youth: Tips for meetings with youth (Includes link to instructions for nifty hands-on activities)

Youth: Five simple steps to making a motion

Youth: Activities to teach youth about parliamentary procedure (more links to activities)

Youth: More parliamentary tips (voting, amendments & calling the question)

Youth: Bylaw basics for 4-H Clubs - Part 1 and Part 2 

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