Modified SRC3 is the standard procedure for handling board meetings of the Dallas Makerspace. It is designed to be a replacement for Robert's Rules of Order. This procedure is modified version of HacDC's MIBS SRC3, tailored for the Dallas Makerspace.
These are not rules, but guidelines for how a meeting should be held. Hard rules and rules lawyering are not in the spirit of these guidelines. Any time limits specified are optional. If a meeting has a lot of items to discuss, the time limits can be used to help keep the meeting on track.
The Basic Ideas
- Keep meetings as short as possible
- Keep everyone informed
- Keep the discussion on track while encouraging different ideas and perspective.
- Give everyone a chance to speak and offer solutions
- Handle problems outside of meetings
- Take basic input and solve problems outside of meetings Most everything should be decided on the wiki, forums or any other communication method that reaches all members.
- Come to meetings with solutions, finalize them in the meeting.
- Keep drama manageable
- Try to achieve unanimous consensus
- Discuss solutions, don't argue about semantics
- When consensus does not seem possible, postpone and re-work until you can.
- When solutions keep being postponed, the majority rules.
Before the meeting
- Avoid bringing issues to meetings. Solve them on your own.
- Where possible, work through the existing committees.
- Avoid making new policies.
- Avoid bureaucracy.
- Use e-mail, the wiki, IRC, Jabber, tacking notices to the wall and any other communication method to define the problem and seek solutions.
- When issues cannot be solved by daily consensus, (or require membership/board approval for legal reasons) submit them for the next meeting as an agenda item. Make sure each agenda item has:
- A BRIEF SUMMARY of the relevant problem
- A more comprehensive discussion of
- WHAT the problem is
- WHY it's relevant to the membership, board, etc.
- WHO is involved
- Describe the proposed solutions. List pros and cons of each solution.
- Propose ONE BEST SOLUTION as official agenda proposal to be adopted in the "Consent Agenda"
- Suggest the time it should take to achieve resolution on the issue.
- All agenda items should be submitted at least 48 hours in advance of a meeting.
The Meeting Agenda
Each meeting should have an agenda. The cut-off time for addition to or revision of the consent agenda's items is 48 hours prior to the meeting. This allows the members time to review the agenda and proposals, to see if they have any objections worthy of pulling the item from the agenda. Items added to new business within 48 hours of the meeting can be approved, but should be seek to achieve consensus or delay until the next meeting if consensus is not possible.
The agenda should include:
- I. Draft minutes of the last meeting
- The Secretary shall type up the meeting minutes highlighting all the relevant ideas and arguments presented by each member for each agenda item at each meeting, as well as providing a list of members present at each meeting. The minutes of any meeting shall be posted in draft form immediately after the meeting and continually revised by the members until "perfect". In a perfect meeting, members have read the minutes and made any necessary corrections by 48 hours prior to the next meeting.
- II. The Consent Agenda
- Each of the newly proposed agenda items appears in the consent agenda. Any member present at any meeting may pull an item out of the consent agenda for discussion, at which point it goes under "New Business". If nobody objects to the solutions presented by the consent agenda, everything in the consent agenda passes by consensus. (This is to encourage people to discuss solutions and policies ahead of time.) In a perfect meeting, the consent agenda passes everything without actual discussion, because it was discussed and agreed to before the meeting. This meeting agenda shall be frozen 48 hours prior to the meeting to encourage members to review and discuss the agenda in its final form prior to the meeting.
- III. Committee Reports
- Each committee chairperson should submit an official report by 24 hours prior to the meeting. During "Committee Reports" questions from the membership of interest to the membership at large should be fielded by the chairperson, if they are not present the questions should be recorded and answered at the next meeting. In a perfect meeting, everyone already asked their questions of the committees and the committees included those answers in their report.
- IV. Old Business
- These are the issues that remained unresolved from the last meeting. In a perfect meeting, there is no old business.
- IV. New Business
- These are the issues from the consent agenda that were pulled out for discussion or were not eligible to be in the consent agenda. In a perfect meeting, there is no new business.
- VI. Adjournment
- No meeting should last more than 60 minutes, especially if it starts at 19:30. In a perfect meeting, all business can be wrapped up in two minutes, allowing more time for showing off and collaborating on cool projects.
- One person speaks at a time
- No person speaks for more than one minute when others are waiting to speak.
- The President will recognize only one person speaking at any time and clearly indicate who that is.
- The President will strive to make sure each person is heard in discussion or each person's objection is heard before giving any person a second chance to talk.
- Asking for objections.
- The President will ask for objections to a given item or action. When they say, "Any objections?" or "Anything else?", they are asking for objections.
- Any member may object simply by indicating "Yes!".
- If there are no objections after three seconds, then the item or action is approved, and/or the meeting moves on.
- If any member objects, they have fifteen seconds to explain why, then the relevant formal objection procedure takes hold.
- Asking to extend time.
- The President shall give a verbal and visual cue of time remaining in each item. 5, 2, 1 and "Time" cues should be given.
- If time is called, a person may finish their sentence. After the sentence is finished, any member except the one speaking may call out, "More time, please!".
- The President will ask, "Any objections?"
- If there are no objections to granting more time, the same amount of time as originally allotted or as indicated below is granted. Otherwise, the meeting moves on.
- If objections exist, it goes to a majority vote: "All in favor of extending time?" (Count those in favor), "All opposed to extending time" (Count those opposed). Majority vote rules.
- In the case of an agenda item under discussion if an extension of time fails, or a solution has not been reached by the first extension of time, it automatically goes to old business for the next meeting. (The idea being that members will seek resolution through other communication methods by the next meeting.)
- Asking for additions/changes.
- The President will ask for additions or changes to be made, saying "Anything else?".
- Any member may propose an addition by indicating "Yes!" then stating what they would like to add or change.
- If there are no further additions or changes after three seconds, the meeting moves on.
- Ask for a vote.
- After one minute of discussion on old business or five minutes of discussion on any new business item, any member may ask for a vote between speakers by saying, "Vote please!".
- The President will ask for objections
- If the majority has objections to calling a vote, discussion continues with the same time allotted as if no up or down request was made.
- If there are no objections to a vote, or the majority wants the vote, the President will Clarify the proposals being discussed
- Each of the proposals will be stated preceded by "All in favor of?".
- Each member may vote only once for each alternative.
- The alternative with the highest votes wins and the meeting moves on.
At the scheduled time, if people are generally ready, the President will start the meeting by saying, "Get comfortable and get quiet, we're starting," and ask the following questions or making the following statements in the following order:
- Does anyone have any revisions to the minutes?
- If yes, wait for revisions.
- Revisions should be a free flow discussion between the Secretary and the group at large.
- Members may only change what they said or acted upon.
- If there are no further revisions, ask for objections to moving on.
- "Do the committees have their reports?"
- Each committee gets five minutes to give a report, if no written one was submitted and five minutes of Q&A.
- Each committees report may be extended for time once by majority vote.
- Another extension automatically puts the report in New Business.
- Once nobody responds to, "Anything else?", or time is reached and not extended, the meeting moves on.
- "Does anyone have any items to pull out of the consent agenda for discussion?"
- If yes, wait for members to pull things out of the consent agenda.
- Any member present may pull an item out of the consent agenda.
- Who pulls items out must be recorded.
- Consent agenda items are discussed in the order they appeared in the agenda.
- Whatever is left in the consent agenda is approved and the meeting moves on.
- "Does anyone have any other new items to add to the agenda"
- New business items that do not appear on the wiki may only be added at the discretion of the President.
- If time is reached, Ask to Extend Time. Time may only be extended once, the minutes revision becomes a New Business agenda item.
- "Moving on to old business!"
- Each item of old business may be discussed for no more than 5 minutes.
- "Moving on to new business."
- Those submitting the proposal will be allowed no more than 10 minutes to explain the proposal and have a Q&A sesssion.
- After those submitting the proposal are finished, the time remaining is used for discussion.
- If all business is taken care of, the meeting is automatically adjourned by declaration of the President
- All remaining new business items are moved into old business for the next meeting.