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45th NATIONAL CONVENTION PLENARY RULES 1. Maintenance of Quorum A. Quorum must be maintained at all times in order to carry on the business of the session. B. Accordingly, once plenary begins, each delegate will be required to sign in and out of the session, so that a proper accounting of quorum may be maintained. 1. As members enter and exit plenary sessions at least one person from each chapter must notify a plenary monitor of the delegate’s entrance or departure. Plenary monitors will maintain a list of all registered chapters at the entrance of the room where plenary is held. 2.Statistics on missing and late chapters will be maintained and listed by region. The list will be posted before each plenary session. C. Seat Requirement 1. At least one representative from each chapter must be seated throughout the duration of each plenary session. If a chapter’s seat is empty through the duration of the session, that chapter will be marked absent. i. A minimum of two seats will be provided for each chapter at the delegates’ tables. Seating for alternates will be located directly behind delegates’ seats. ii. Special consideration will be given to chapters with only one representative; however, if the seat is empty for the majority or duration of the session, that chapter will be marked as absent. 2. Delegate Information A. Upon arrival at convention Delegates will be required to provide their cell phone numbers and hotel and room information at the registration table. 1. Chapters whose delegates are not present at the beginning of plenary session will be contacted using this information. Chapters whose delegates do not respond will be contacted at the nblsa.org email address. 3. Proxy Rules A. If deemed necessary, a school wishing to proxy all or a portion of its votes must: 1. identify a receiving chapter in good standing; 2.complete the required proxy certification form, providing contact information of delegate that will serve as proxy; 3. the delegates from both chapters must submit the proxy form to the National Director of Membership. i. Note: The form is invalid unless signed by the National Director of Membership. 4.All proxies must be executed by the beginning of the proxied plenary session. Once proxied, the vote is relinquished for the remainder of the plenary session specified.

44nd National Convention Plenary Rules


B. Delegates must provide the contact information of their proxy once a proxy has been established. 4. Penalties A. Absences 1. Chapters must attend 75% of all plenary sessions combined 2.Chapters who are not present (either in person or via proxy as defined in the rules) for 75% of all plenary sessions forfeit their voting privileges for the election of National officers B. Tardiness 1. Chapter attendance will be verified visually and via check-in sheet ten minutes after the designated plenary start time. Any missing delegates will be contacted. 2.Chapters whose delegates (or proxies) are fifteen or more minutes late will be subject to the following penalties: i. First infraction a. Notification letter will be sent to the Chapter’s faculty sponsor/advisor indicating tardiness and lack of professionalism at convention. ii. Second infraction a. Region of the year point deduction i. After completion of Plenary Session Four, all chapter tardies will be calculated by region. ii. Chapters within each region with two (2) or more infractions will prevent regions from receiving full point allocation for National Convention participation and plenary attendance. iii. Third infraction a. Chapter fine i. Chapters with three (3) or more infractions will be fined $25, and an additional $25 for each subsequent infraction. ii. Chapters who refuse to pay the fine may have their voting privileges revoked until the fine is paid and/or will be deemed “inactive” [NBLSA Constitution, Art III §2 (A)(2)] for the purposes of the upcoming academic year until the fine is paid. 5. Recognition of Speakers A. A member may not speak unless recognized by the speaker. Any member speaking out of turn will lose their turn at the microphone. B. Once recognized the member must introduce themselves for the record. 1. Example: “Charles Hamilton Houston, Howard University.” C. In order to prevent the “rush to the microphone,” NBLSA will employ both precedent (number of times a speaker has spoken) and order in which a speaker is recognized. This system facilitates both fairness and a free exchange of different ideas and opinions in the legislative process.

44nd National Convention Plenary Rules


6. Decorum A. Certain issues discussed during plenary may be controversial. We must always remember to maintain decorum, however, in order to conduct the business of NBLSA. B. Each member shall address the body with respect and civility. C. Any member that is disruptive to the plenary session will be asked to leave plenary for the remainder of the day. Delegates removed for being disruptive must provide an alternate delegate to ensure compliance with the seat requirement. 7. Debate A. Debate will be conducted by alternating Pro/Con statements at the respective microphones. B. In the interest of time and fairness, no debate will last longer than 10 minutes. 1. Time may be extended through unanimous consent motions. C. While it is very important that we deal with the issues the body wants to entertain, it is equally important that we do so in an efficient manner. D. Please consider the content and necessity of your comment (i.e. does it further the goals of plenary or this particular discussion? Is it repetitive?) before addressing the body.. 8. Vote A. Votes will be cast by raising a vote card designated for your chapter. B. All votes will be approved according to standards established in the Constitution and Bylaws. 1. Constitutional amendments require a two-thirds (2/3) vote 2.Bylaws require a simple majority vote. 9. Roll Call Vote A. In the event that a motion is too close to recognize, a formal roll call vote may be required. B. The National Secretary will use the current sign-in sheets to solicit the vote of each chapter. C. The vote will be tallied immediately (please respectfully allow time for calculation) and a decision announced thereafter. 10. Questions and Concerns A. Question, comments, and concerns shall be directed to the information desk. B. Any grievances must also be filed at the information desk. 1. All grievances will be handled by the Grievance Committee, headed by the National Vice-Chair.

44nd National Convention Plenary Rules

2013 Plenary Rules  

2013 Plenary Rules

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