Convention Minutes Deadline Motion

The current Standing Rules of the Libertarian Party of Florida (Article XII; Section 2) have the following language:

The Annual Meeting Minutes (after approval by the Executive Committee) as well as any Committee reports to the Annual Meeting, including amendments to the Constitution and Bylaws, shall be made accessible to the membership in a digital format no less than 14 days prior to the next Annual Meeting.

Under most organization’s general proceedings, the minutes for a meeting are approved at a subsequent meeting of the organization.  The minutes for a LPF EC meeting are approved at the next LPF EC meeting.

The problem is that the Annual Convention isn’t a meeting of the LPF EC.  It’s its own special case.  So the minutes for the 2017 Annual Convention won’t be approved until the 2018 Annual Convention.  The minutes for the 2018 Annual Convention won’t be approved until the 2019 Annual Convention.  And so on.

While it makes sense for the other items to be brought up at the Annual Convention should be finalized no less than 14 days prior to the next Annual Convention, that doesn’t mean that the draft minutes of an Annual Convention shouldn’t be available soon after the Convention ends.  Additionally, the minutes of a meeting are the sole responsibility of the Secretary.  There is no good reason why the Executive Committee needs to approve the Annual Meeting Minutes.

So I’ve proposed the following as the updated wording, replacing the existing verbiage above:

The draft Annual Meeting Minutes and Constitution, Bylaws, Standing Rules, and Platform as amended shall be made accessible to the membership in a digital format within 60 days of the close of the Annual Meeting.  Committee reports to the next Annual Meeting, including proposed amendments to the Constitution, Bylaws, Standing Rules, and Platform, shall be made accessible to the membership in a digital format no less than 14 days prior to the next Annual Meeting.

Now there are two separate items discussed.

First, a draft of the minutes, as well as updated versions of any documents changed by action of the convention, need to be completed and available within sixty days of the close of the convention.  That sixty day period can be used by the Secretary, if they choose, to have the minutes reviewed by the Executive Committee.  The Secretary can also have the minutes reviewed by anyone else they choose.  Or they may decide to not have the draft minutes reviewed at all.  The ultimate decision for what’s in the draft minutes is the Secretary’s responsibility, not the Executive Committee’s.

Why am I emphasizing “and available”?  If you go to the Libertarian Party of Florida’s Governing Documents web site, you will not be able to find the draft minutes of the 2017 Convention as of December 19, 2017.  But they’ve been completed.  I attached a copy of the draft minutes to the LPEdia article on the 2017 Convention.  But I wouldn’t call them available since most people wouldn’t know to look at the article.

The other part of this section relates to the information necessary for the business meeting of the next convention.  The fourteen day deadline currently in the Bylaws remains in effect.  This gives the attendees a couple of weeks to go over them prior to the meeting.  I’ve heard suggestions for changing that time frame, but that’s a different issue than I’m addressing.

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