Robert's Rules and Motions Related to Nominations

Whenever you need to specify a way to come up with nominees, as you probably will for situations your bylaws don’t cover, you use a motion related to the method of nominations. And whenever you want to specify when nominations can be made, you use a motion to open or close nominations. Collectively, these motions are known as motions related to nominations.

A motion relating to nominations

  • Can’t interrupt a speaker who has the floor or a member making a nomination

  • Must be seconded

  • Isn’t debatable

  • Can be amended

  • Requires a majority vote (except the motion to close nominations, which requires a two-thirds vote)

  • Can be reconsidered if it’s a negative vote to reopen nominations

Method of nominations

This example is based on moving to have nominations by committee, but the form is essentially the same for any of the methods.

You simply say, “Mr. Chairman, I move that the chair appoint a committee of three to consider and make recommendations on the replacement of Mr. Finkblossom, who has resigned as chairman of the membership committee.” Whatever nomination method you propose, be specific.

Motions to open or close nominations

A motion to open nominations, when made by a member, is usually a motion to reopen nominations after they have been closed. (The chair usually just announces the opening of nominations at the appointed time when they are in order.)

Members rarely make a motion to close nominations because it’s never in order to make this motion as long as anyone wants to make a nomination. Also, members rarely move to close nominations because, whenever no further nominations are offered, the chair usually just declares, “Hearing no further nominations, nominations for the office of [name the office] are closed.”

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