Convention Comments Number 6

April 21, 2017

The Convention Committees

Convention committees are established for the express purpose of expediting convention business.

A committee being composed of only a portion of the delegates to a convention possesses the obvious advantage of being able to consider the details of resolutions or other matters referred to it in thorough and patient deliberation that would be practically impossible on the convention floor.  Convention committees except Credentials and Nominations, meet several months before the Convention so that delegates receive copies of their recommendations in advance.

The various committees and their composition are usually determined beforehand.

The following committees have been established for our Conventions:

By-Laws
Finance
Collective Bargaining
General Resolutions
Credentials
Nominations Committee

Committees do not normally sit and/or conduct their business during plenary sessions of the convention, however in exceptional circumstances; the convention may direct or give permission for a committee to sit.

A committee is bound by the convention's terms of reference and the committee's deliberations are limited by the extent of the authority given to it.  For example, the By-Laws committee should consider only those resolutions submitted to the convention on that subject.

A committee must reach a conclusion on each resolution referred to it and recommend concurrence or non concurrence to the convention.  In short, a committee is expected to take the raw material (resolutions) and, if necessary rework them without changing the intent, into a fashion it thinks will meet with the approval of the convention.

Nothing stated above is intended to infer that a committee cannot combine or blend resolutions of a like nature.  However any such action and its rationale should be outlined to the convention at the appropriate time, during the presentation of the committee report.

The report of a committee should be presented to the convention by the Chairperson of that committee.  The report will take the form of one or more motions by the Chairperson (depending on the number of resolutions or matters to be dealt with) in somewhat the following manner:

"The committee recommends concurrence/non-concurrence in Resolution No.....(whatever number appears opposite the resolution on the convention agenda)". The committee chairperson normally moves the recommendation and the co-chairperson seconds. The committee chairperson gives the rationale for the committee's recommendation.

Each resolution or matter the committee has considered is presented in the same fashion until all resolutions or matters have been disposed of by the convention.  However, it is not uncommon for the committee to deal with all recommendations of concurrence first.

Under the Rules of Order adopted by the Union, committee reports are not subject to amendment but may be referred back to the committee for further consideration with or without instructions.

The report of a committee, when accepted, becomes the decision of the convention.