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Report of the Board of Governors (1)

To the Council of Delegates:

The OSBA Board of Governors respectfully requests your favorable consideration of an amendment to Section III of the Bylaws of the Council of Delegates and the repeal of Resolution No. 1 of the Council of Delegates for the reasons stated below.

Section III of the Bylaws currently provides that no person shall be entitled to speak for more than ten minutes unless two-thirds of the Council consents to a longer period of time. The Board of Governors recommends that the ten minute provision be reduced to five minutes in order to move Council of Delegates meetings along in a more expeditious manner. It is noteworthy that, except in a few instances, members of the Council and others conclude their remarks in less than five minutes. The Board recommends that, with regard to reports from OSBA committees and sections, a ten-minute rule apply, as oftentimes such reports require a longer time to present. Persons presenting a report or resolution would still be entitled to open and close the matter under discussion.

Resolution No. 1 was adopted by the Council of Delegates on Nov. 9, 1991.

Resolution Number 1 addresses the submission of legislative proposals by OSBA committees and sections at the November meeting of the Council of Delegates immediately preceding the convening of the legislature the following January. It provides that with regard to those submissions, a two-thirds vote of those present at a Council of Delegates meeting is required rather than the customary majority vote at the May meeting.

The “Resolution” was overlooked or disregarded for years until it was brought to our attention last year by the parliamentarian.

The Board cannot remember the rationale for adopting it other than a spur of the moment reaction to a few proposals that may have been rushed through. Such is not the case any longer.

The Ohio General Assembly is in session for a good part of its two year session and the OSBA regularly interacts with it on behalf of OSBA-sponsored proposals. All reports and recommendations of OSBA committees and sections are published for review and comment and are forwarded to all committees and sections by mail and electronically.

The Council of Delegates and Screening Committee carefully review all proposals, and in the event questions arise that call for further study and reflection, exercise due diligence in recommending a referral back to the originating committee and/or referral to others for further analysis. The screening mechanism, in particular, has proven very effective over the years.

Given the fact that Ohio has a “full-time” legislature and recognizing that the OSBA is an active participant in the process, and further recognizing the checks and balances in our committees and sections along with the role played by the Council of Delegates, the Board of Governors finds no current basis to differentiate between our November and our May Council of Delegates meetings and recommends that Resolution No. 1 be repealed.

Respectfully submitted,
Keith A. Ashmus, Cleveland
President, Ohio State Bar Association

Section III

No person shall without the consent of two-thirds of the delegates present be entitled to speak more than once or for more than ten five minutes on any issue before the Council. except that the delegate who initiates the discussion of the issue shall be entitled to open and close the discussion. Provided, however, that nothing here in contained shall be construed to apply to reports presented by committees or sections. Reports presented by committees and sections shall be limited to ten minutes, provided, however, that the ten-minute restriction shall not apply to the discussion of a proposal subsequent to its initial presentation. A member of the council or person presenting a report or resolution shall be entitled to open and close the discussion on the matter under consideration.

Resolution No. 1

WHEREAS, legislative proposals by the various committees and sections of the Association have frequently not been submitted for action by the Council of Delegates until the November meeting immediately preceding the convening of the legislature the following January; and

WHEREAS, this procedure has resulted in hasty consideration of some of the proposals and has given little time to acquaint local bar associations and Association members generally with the proposals; and

WHEREAS, this situation would be obviated if proposed legislation was submitted to the Council of Delegates at its meeting in May preceding the convening of the legislature;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that, in the absence of an emergency declared by a two-thirds vote of those present at the Council meeting, any legislation proposed for introduction in the legislature be submitted to the Council of Delegates for action no later than its meeting in May next preceding the convening of each legislature, and that the standing committees and the sections of the Association be advised of the adoption of this resolution.

As amended by the Council of Delegates Nov. 9, 1991.


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