Rules of Legislative Order
Rule 1-PurposesPurposes of these Rules of Order shall be to provide for orderly and expeditious Crow Tribal Legislative sessions, based on the principle of majority rule while providing for and protecting the right of any member to express his or her view on matters before the Legislature.
Rule 2-Conduct of Legislative RepresentativesThe failure of any member of the Crow Tribal Legislature to comply with these Rules of Order shall be deemed disorderly behavior upon a determination of such by the Speaker. A member who is found to have committed an act of disorderly behavior may be prevented from speaking or voting on matters pending before the Crow Tribal Legislature.
Regular sessions shall be held beginning on Monday of the second week of January, April, July and October. Regular sessions shall last no longer than two weeks and the Legislature must adjourn by the end of business on Friday of the second week of the session.
Special sessions may be called in order to address agenda items deemed to be of critical importance and requiring expeditious consideration.
The Speaker is authorized to call a special session, upon two working days written notice to the Legislature. Such written notice shall identify the date and time for the Special session, the number of days for the session, and the reason for the session.
If the Speaker does not call a special session, the Legislature may petition for a special session. Such petition must be signed by two-thirds of the full membership of the Legislature. Upon submission of the petition to the Speaker, the Speaker must accordingly call a special session.
Notice must be provided to the public regarding all duly called special sessions. Such notice shall set the time, date and reason for the special session and shall be publicized in a local newspaper and posted at the Tribal Administration building.
All Legislative session shall be held at the Crow Tribal Legislative Chambers in Crow Agency, Montana.
Rule 4-Speaker of the Crow Tribal LegislatureThe Speaker shall make reasonable efforts to begin the Legislative sessions at the hour and days set for Legislative sessions. The Speaker shall conduct the Legislature's order of business in accordance with Rule 9, Order of Agenda Business. The Speaker shall preserve the order and decorum; decide and rule on all points of order; shall participate in debate and vote on any matter before the Legislature. The Speaker shall sign and certify all legislative proposals approved by the Legislature and all documents directed by the Legislature. Upon the unavailability or absence of the Speaker, the members may select a Speaker pro tem. The Speaker Pro Tem shall not be authorized to engage in other administrative duties of the Speaker, not related to the conduct of legislative sessions, including, but not limited to, personnel matters of the approval of invoices for Legislative Branch Contractors. In the Speaker's absence, such administrative duties shall be performed by the Secretary of the Legislature. A Speaker Pro Tem shall be compensated at the rate approved for the Speaker, during that portion of the Legislative session at which he or she serves as Speaker Pro Tem. Accordingly, during his or absence, the Speaker shall receive compensation at the rate approved for regular Legislative members
Rule 5-Secretary of the LegislatureThe Secretary shall provide notices of session times, dates and location to all other members of the Legislature by written memorandum, which shall include a listing of all proposed agenda items. The Secretary shall prepare all proposed legislation for distribution to all members of the Legislature at least five (5) days prior to a regular session and at least (1) day prior to a special session. The Secretary shall prepare the agenda for the session and ensure that all agenda items have met the requirements set forth the Rule 10, Adoption of Agenda. The Secretary and/or his designee shall prepare and maintain the legislative journal.
Rule 6-Sergeant at ArmsA Sergeant at Arms shall be employed to keep order during Legislative Sessions. The Sergeant at Arms shall be authorized to remove disruptive persons from the Legislative Chambers. The Sergeant at Arms shall serve as parliamentarian and shall work with the Speaker to ensure compliance with the Rules of Order.
Rule 7-Crow Tribal Legislature JournalA journal of all official Crow Tribal Legislative proceedings shall be recorded. The journal shall contain the authenticated, official summary of proceedings of each meeting of the Crow Tribal Legislature's Session. The legislative journal shall be compiled weekly and presented to the Legislature the following week for review and approval by the Legislature. The journal need not be read into the record prior to approval. Any Legislative Representative desiring to make a correction(s) shall put such correction in writing to the Secretary. The Secretary shall review the request for correction and if the request is supported by the record, the Secretary shall announce such correction at the Legislative Session. The weekly legislative journal shall be approved by motion, duly seconded and approval by majority vote of the votes cast. The Journal, along with any audio recordings of the proceedings and documents distributed, shall be maintained by the Secretary of the Crow Tribal Legislature or his or her designee and is considered a public record.
Rule 8-Establishment of QuorumThirteen (13) members of the Legislature, twelve (12) members plus the Speaker (or Speaker Pro Tem in the Speaker's absence), shall constitute a quorum upon the establishment of which the Legislature may call the Legislative Session to order. Once a quorum is established, the Legislature may continue to conduct business as long as a majority of the full membership of the Legislature is present. However, the Legislature may not vote on any matter until a quorum of thirteen members is present.
Rule 9-Order of Agenda BusinessThe Order of Agenda Business for the Crow Tribal Legislature shall be as follows: Call Session to Order; Roll Call; Invocation. Recognize Guests and Visiting officials. Review and Adopt the Agenda. Review and Approve the Journal (once per week) Receive Reports (if any): Report from the Speaker & the Secretary of the Crow Tribal Legislature; Report from Subcommittees Report from the Executive Branch Report from the Judicial Branch. Old business (if any): Items Referred to Committee. Tabled Items. Vetoed Items. Items from Previous Agenda that were not introduced. New Business Legislative Resolutions. Joint Action Resolutions and Bills presented by Chairman Joint Action Resolutions and Bills presented by Legislature. Close of Session; Announcements; Adjournment.
Rule 10-Adoption of AgendaThe Legislature shall initially consider adoption of an agenda. Any member of the Legislature may propose a motion to adopt the agenda. A majority vote by members of the Legislature casting a vote shall cause the motion to adopt the agenda to carry. Once an agenda is adopted by the Council, it may be amended by any member of the Legislature by motion, duly seconded, and majority vote of all votes cast. All proposed Legislative Resolutions shall be provided to the Secretary of the Crow Tribal Legislature at least one (1) day prior to each Legislative session for inclusion on the agenda. However, Legislative Resolutions may be added to the agenda by amendment at any time prior to the adjournment of the session. Initial drafts of all Joint Action Resolutions ad Bills, along with all relevant attachments requiring approval, including but not limited to proposed codes, acts, contracts, amendments, budgets, etc., shall be submitted to the Crow Tribal Legislature, for review by the Legislative Attorney, at least thirty (30) days prior to each regular Legislative Session. No Joint Action Resolution or Bill shall be included on the agenda unless it, along with all relevant attachments, including but not limited to proposed codes, acts, contracts, amendments, budgets, etc., has been provided to the Secretary of the Crow Tribal Legislature at least fifteen (15) days prior to each regular session, in compliance with the requirements of the Crow Constitution. The prohibition shall not apply to special sessions. If a Joint Action Resolution or Bill submitted to the Secretary of the Crow Tribal Legislature does not include relevant attachments, it shall be deemed in non-compliance with the fifteen (15) day requirement and shall not be included on the agenda. On the next business day following submission of all Joint Action Resolutions and Bills to the Secretary, the Secretary, the Speaker and the Chairmen of each Legislative Subcommittee shall meet to initially review the legislative proposals and forward each proposal to the appropriate Legislative Subcommittee. The Chairmen shall then call a sub-committee meeting at least one week prior to the beginning of the upcoming Legislative session to review the proposal and prepare written or oral recommendations for consideration by the full Legislature. No proposed Joint Action Resolutions or Bill may be considered by the full Legislature until such time as the appropriate subcommittee has reviewed the proposal and made recommendations .
Rule 11-Reading of ProposalsAll proposed Legislative Resolutions, Joint Action Resolutions, and Bills shall be made a part of the Legislature's official journal. All proposals shall be read into the record twice: The first reading shall be of the proposal along with any exhibit(s). After the motion to adopt, debate, and amendment, if any, a second reading shall be concluded. The second reading shall include all amendments adopted by the Legislature during debate and shall be limited only to those provisions or sections which have been amended. Upon completion of the second reading, the Speaker shall put the matter to final vote without further debate.
Rule 12-Main MotionAfter the first reading of the proposed Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution, or Bill, along with any exhibit (s), the Speaker shall entertain a motion to adopt the proposal. A second shall be made without stipulation. If there is no second, the motion shall be void and the proposal shall be automatically stricken from the Legislature's agenda.
Rule 13-Presentation by Sponsor(s)Following the main motion and second, the Sponsor(s) shall provide appropriate presentation, including an explanation of the proposal, prior to debate. A sponsor may designate a substitute to make the presentation. As well, a sponsor may direct additional spokesmen to provide supporting statements during the presentation. The time allowed in total for the sponsor's presentation, including any statements by additional spokesmen, is thirty (30) minutes. To maintain efficiency and avoid repetition, the Speaker may limit the number of spokesmen permitted to speak during a presentation. If the sponsor or the designated substitute are not present and prepared to provide their presentation when the proposal is called for, that proposal may be eliminated from the agenda of the present session and shall be automatically placed on the agenda of the next succeeding special or regular session as old business. Such action shall not constitute a tabling of the proposal, pursuant to Rule 18, Tabling Motion.
Rule 14-DebateDebate shall include questions by members of the Legislature directed towards the sponsor; statements of opinion by members of the Legislature; as well as opportunities for the Legislature to request clarification and further documentation from the sponsor and/or affected offices and programs. It shall be at the discretion of the Speaker when debate on any issue shall be deemed to cease, unless debate is terminated by motion, duly seconded and approval by majority vote. Whenever debate is so terminated, the Speaker shall put the question then before the Legislature to immediate vote. A member choosing to debate shall do so only upon addressing and being recognized by the Speaker and shall discuss only the issue presently before the Legislature. No member of the Legislature shall be interrupted when speaking except for a point of order or question of privilege, and no question shall be asked him except by or through the Speaker.
Rule 15-Response by Sponsor(s) During DebateAll questions on proposals shall be directed through the Speaker to the sponsor(s). Only upon recognition by the Speaker shall the sponsor(s) address the Legislature.
Rule 16-Amendment to Proposal During DebateDuring debate, any member of the Legislature (except parties to the main motion) of the Legislature shall be permitted to propose an amendment to the Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution, or Bill by so moving. Such an amendment may only amend a portion of the Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution, or Bill and not its entirety. Any proposed amendment must be seconded, without stipulation, by a member of the Legislature so recognized by the Speaker. Once seconded, the proposed amendment shall be subject to debate by members of the Legislature. A proposed amendment shall take precedence over the main motion and the Speaker shall allow debate of the amendment prior to resuming debate on the main motion. A majority vote by members of the Legislature casting a vote shall cause the motion to amend to carry. Thereafter, debate of the main motion shall continue as amended. There shall be only one motion to amend allowed at any given time. Each motion to amend shall be debated and voted upon before another motion to amend is entertained. Amendments may be entertained only if they are deemed germane, meaning they are significantly related to the underlying legislative proposal. Any member of the Legislature, or the sponsor, may question whether or not an amendment is germane. Upon such a question, the Speaker may make a determination on whether or not the amendment is germane. If the amendment is not germane, the member proposing the amendment will be allowed to revise the amendment to make it germane. After all amendments have been made, a second reading shall occur, pursuant to Rule 11, Reading of Proposals. Only the full Legislature may make amendments to proposed legislation.
Rule 17-Withdrawal of MotionA member of the Legislature may withdraw or modify a motion made by that member if the Speaker grants permission and there is no objection from any other member present. If there is an objection to withdrawal or modification, the member seeking to withdraw or modify must obtain the Speaker's approval to withdraw or modify the motion by separate motion made for that purpose. The motion to withdraw or modify shall take precedence over the motion it seeks to withdraw or modify, is not subject to debate, and cannot be amended. It must be seconded without stipulation. A majority vote by the members casting a vote shall cause the motion to carry. A sponsor of a proposed Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution or Bill may withdraw the proposal at any time prior to final vote by the Legislature, only if the Speaker grants permission and there is no objection from any other member present. If there is an objection to withdrawal, the sponsor must obtain the Speaker's approval to put the issue before the Legislature for motion, second and vote in accordance with the provisions set forth above.
Rule 18-Tabling MotionAny member of the Legislature may motion to table a proposed Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution or Bill that is before the Legislature. A tabling motion shall take precedence over all other motions except the motion to adjourn. A tabling motion shall include specific directive(s) on when the proposal will be reconsidered. A tabling motion must be seconded. A majority vote by members of the Legislature casting a vote shall cause this motion to carry. A tabling motion is not subject to debate. A proposed Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution or Bill which has been tabled twice shall be eliminated from the agenda of the Legislature. Identical or similar proposals may be reintroduced at later Legislative sessions pursuant to Rule 9, Order of Agenda, as new business. A Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution or Bill may be taken up from the table by motion, duly seconded, and majority vote of the votes cast. A motion to take a resolution from the table is not debatable. Any Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution or Bill taken up from the table need not be added to the agenda in order to be debated by the Legislature. Any Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution or Bill not taken up from the table in the manner or at the time directed by the Legislature shall be deemed to have expired and shall be eliminated from the agenda of the Legislature. Identical or similar proposals may be reintroduced at later Legislative sessions pursuant to Rule 9, Order of Agenda Business, as new business.
Rule 19-Reference to CommitteeAny proposed Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution, Bill or report may be referred to any committee of the Legislature having oversight of matters within the proposal or report for deliberation by the committee before final vote by the Legislature. Any member of the Legislature may motion to refer a proposal before the Legislature to a committee or committees of the Legislature after a main motion has been established. The referral motion shall identify the committee or committees to which the reference is made. The referral motion must be seconded and is not debatable. The referral motion shall specify the action to be taken by the committee or committees and shall, if required, set a time for the Legislature to take up the matter after completion of deliberation by the committee or committees. A majority vote by members of the Legislature casting a vote shall cause the motion to carry. Such deferral shall not constitute a tabling of the proposal, pursuant to Rule18, Tabling Motion, unless an additional, specific tabling motion is made. A If an item has been referred to committee and it is not reconsidered by the full Legislature at the same session, the item will automatically appear on the agenda for the next scheduled legislative session as old business. Upon referral to subcommittee pursuant to this Rule, the subcommittee may not amend the proposal. However, the subcommittee may make recommendations for amendments to be made by the full Legislature.
Rule 20-Deferral for Public HearingAny proposed Legislative Resolution, Joint Action Resolution, or Bill may be deferred for public hearing before final vote by the Legislature, if the proposal is deemed to be of critical public importance. Such deferral shall provide an opportunity for the Crow Tribal membership to offer testimony and opinions regarding the proposal. During debate on the proposal, any member of the Legislature may motion to defer the proposal for public hearing. The referral motion must be seconded and is subject to debate. A majority vote by members of the Legislature casting a vote shall cause the motion to carry. The referral motion shall specify whether the public hearing is to be conducted by the full Legislature (with the quorum requirements met), or by the Sub-committee having oversight of matters within the proposal, shall set a timeframe for the public hearing to take place and hall specify when the Legislature shall take up the matter. Public hearings may also be requested during the Legislative interim, in advance of the proposal being presented to the Legislature. Such request may be made by the sponsor o by any member of the Legislature and shall be presented in writing to the full Legislature. Such request shall specify whether the public hearing is to be conducted by the full Legislature (with the quorum requirements met), or by the Sub-committee having oversight of matters within the proposal and shall set a timeframe for the public hearing to take place. If the request is approved, by petition signed by majority of the full membership of the Legislature, a public hearing shall be set. The Speaker, or Sub-committee Chairman, shall schedule a public hearing with at least ten (10) working days advance notice provided to the public. Notice shall be provided by publication in a local newspaper and posting at the Tribal Administration offices. The notices shall set the time, date and location of the public hearing, provide a brief summary of the proposal, the location where interested members of the public may pick-up copies of the proposal, and a statement that written testimony may be offered and must be submitted to the Legislative office by a stated time and date. On the scheduled day of the public hearing, the Legislature, or Sub-committee, shall make available additional copies of the proposal for review by the public. Each witness shall be restricted to fifteen (15) minutes of narrative of testimony and such testimony shall be under oath. At the end of the testimony, members of the Legislature or Sub-committee shall be given an opportunity to ask questions of the witness. Upon the conclusion of the public hearing the testimony presented shall be reviewed and the Legislature, or Sub-committee, shall take such testimony into consideration to develop a final proposal for vote by the Legislature. Such deferral shall not constitute a tabling of the proposal, pursuant to Rule 18, Tabling Motion, unless an additional, specific tabling motion is made.
Rule 21-Conflict of InterestMembers of the Legislature who have a conflict of interest, including personal, family or business interests, in matters being considered by the Legislature shall not participate in any proceedings concerning the matter, including debate, and may not vote on the matter. If a member does not recuse him/herself from participation in the proceedings and it is believed that the member has a conflict of interest, the Legislature may require recusal by the member, by motion, duly seconded, and approval by majority vote. Upon a member's recusal from consideration of proposals due to conflict of interest, the member shall not be counted for purposes of establishing a quorum.
Rule 22-VoteEvery member of the Legislature shall vote for or against car abstain on each motion before the Legislature, except by recusal pursuant to Rule 21-Conflict of Interest. Any motion shall be passed if it received a majority vote, unless a higher standard is constitutionally required. Before a vote is taken on each motion, the Speaker shall announce that a vote is about to be taken. The members shall then be given an opportunity to cast their votes by roll call vote. Before the final result of the vote is called by the Secretary, any member of the Legislature may change his or her vote. Voting by proxy or by any method by or on behalf of any member who is not physically present at the Legislative Session shall not be valid or permitted.
Rule 23-Recall of VoteAny member voting with the prevailing side on any motion may move to recall the previous vote so that the matter may be reconsidered by the Legislature. Any member may second the motion. The recall motion shall be passed by a majority vote of members of the Legislature. A recall motion must be made during the Legislative session in which the original motion was considered. The recall motion shall not be valid to reconsider a matter from any prior session of the Legislature. A recall motion shall not apply to any motion to adjourn, to table or take from the table, to suspend the rules, or an amendment motion when a vote on the main motion has already been taken, unless the vote on the main motion is first successfully recalled pursuant to this Rule. No vote on a motion may be reconsidered more than once pursuant to a recall of vote, unless the motion was amended after reconsideration. If passed, the recall motion places the motion subject to reconsideration in the same position it occupied before being originally voted upon.
Rule 24-Effect of Final Vote on Main MotionCertification of All Approved Proposals: All Legislative Resolutions, Joint Action Resolutions and Bills that are approved by the Legislature shall be finalized to include any amendments. Upon finalization, the Speaker shall sign and certify the approved proposals. All certified Legislative Resolutions shall be effective on the date of certification, unless a later effective date is provided for in the Legislative Resolution. Executive Action of Joint Action Resolutions and Bills: Upon certification, all Joint Action Resolutions and Bills shall be submitted to the Chairman for executive action. The Chairman shall have ten (10) working days to approve or veto the legislation. This time line shall begin on the first working day following transmittal of the legislation to the Chairman's office. If the Chairman does not act within the specified time, the legislation shall be deemed automatically approved. Such automatic approval shall be certified by the Secretary of the Legislature. All Joint Action Resolutions and Bills approved by executive action shall be effective on the date of executive approval, unless a later effective date is provided for in the legislation. All Joint Action Resolutions and Bills automatically approved by inaction of the Chairman shall be effective on the date of certification by the Secretary of the Legislature, unless a later effective date is provided for in the legislation. If the Chairman vetoes a Joint Action Resolution or Bill, the Legislature may override the veto by motion, duly seconded, and two-thirds (2/3) vote of the full membership of the Legislature. The effective date of the legislation shall be the date of certification of the override vote by the Speaker. If a proposal does not receive a majority vote of the votes cast, it shall be deemed defeated and shall be eliminated from the agenda of the Legislature. Identical or similar proposals may reintroduced at later Legislative sessions pursuant to Rule 9 as new business.
Rule 25-Executive SessionUpon a motion by any member of the Legislature, duly seconded, and majority vote of the votes cast, the Legislature may resolve itself into an executive session to discuss any business item on the adopted agenda which may require confidentiality and/or are of a sensitive nature. A motion to enter executive session shall take precedence over any other pending motion. No official action may be taken by the Legislature while in executive session.
Rule 26-Suspension of RulesIn order to prevent time wastage and more efficiently conduct the business of the Legislature, any member may move to temporarily suspend a rule or rules of the Legislature by which it conducts its business. The motion must specify the rule(s) to be suspended and how long such rule(s) shall be suspended. The motion may apply to a particular matter before the Legislature or to all business conducted by the Legislature during any session for such period of time, or for items of business, specified in the motion. The motion to suspend the rules shall carry upon majority vote of those casting a vote.
Rule 27-Questions of PrivilegeQuestions of privilege are those questions which relate to the rights and privileges of the Crow Tribal Legislature or of its members when the Legislature is in session. The question of privilege shall not be seconded or debated. Any member of the Legislature may raise a question of privilege to receive additional documents from the sponsor(s), raise the safety of the Legislature, raise the dignity and integrity of the proceedings, or raise an issue of the personal dignity of a Legislative member. Questions of privilege shall not be used to engage in additional debate. The member raising the question of privilege may interrupt the Speaker. The Speaker shall immediately address the question of privilege raised by the member before proceeding with the session. The Speaker's resolution of the question of privilege shall be final, unless a subsequent point of order is raised.
Rule 28-Point of Order; Appeal of DecisionIf a motion, procedure or remark appears to be in violation of the established rules of order of the Legislature, any member may raise a point of order. The point of order shall be raised immediately after the error is made. The member raising the point of order may interrupt the Speaker and a vote in progress to raise the issue. The point of order shall not be seconded and is not subject to debate. The Speaker shall immediately decide and rule upon the point of order before any action on the question is made by the Legislature. Once the Speaker has made his or her decision on the point of order, any member may appeal the decision. The appeal must be seconded. The appeal shall not be amended. If the appeal is made and seconded the Speaker shall restate his decision and submit the matter to the judgment of the Legislature. The decision shall then be subject to debate by the Legislature, during which the Speaker may state his reasons for the decision. Upon conclusion of debate, a vote shall be taken, and the decision of the Speaker shall be reversed if the majority of all votes cast are in favor of the appeal.
Rule 29-AmendmentsThe Rules of Order of the Crow Tribal Legislature shall become effective immediately upon adoption by the Legislature. The Rules of Order of the Crow Tribal Legislature may be amended by Legislative Resolution, approved by majority vote of the Legislative members casting a vote.