RULES OF PROCEDURE FOR THE DALTON SPECIAL TOWN MEETING Tuesday, July 30, 2019 7:00 pm, Dalton Municipal Building

  1. Rules for Debate
    1. Only registered voters my speak. An exception may be made for town officials.
    2. Those wishing to be recognized to speak should line up behind the audience microphone. Once the Moderator recognized you, please state your name. The Moderator will give preference to voters who have not yet spoken before those who have already spoken. Town officials may be required to speak more frequently. If your view has been expressed by someone else, please refrain from repetitive comments.
    3. All speakers are expected to direct their comments to the Moderator, to be courteous, and to speak to the issue under discussion, not to individuals. Conversation between individuals, personal attacks and inappropriate language will not be tolerated.
    4. If any person behaves in a disorderly manner, and after notice from the Moderator persists in such behavior, or shall in any way disturb the meeting, or willfully violate any rule of proceeding, the Moderator may have a police officer, or any legal voter of the town, remove such person from the meeting. (RSA 40:8)
    5. All speakers are requested to use the floor microphone so all can hear clearly.
    6. All speakers are requested to complete sign-up sheet, to facilitate accurate recording of speaker names.
    7. By majority vote, eligible voters can overrule any decision of the Moderator and any rule the Moderator establishes. A voter can raise such a request by Point of Order.
    8. Please silence cell phones.
    9. No flash pictures allowed.
    10. No cameras will be allowed between the Moderator and the town residents.
  1. Voting on Articles, Amendments
    1. The Moderator will take the articles in the order listed on the town Warrant unless voters request and approve a specific change. For this Special Town Meeting, per RSA 675:4-a, this Special Town Meeting is called only “to act upon the following question: “Shall the town adopt the provisions of RSA 674:24-29 entitled ‘Emergency Temporary Zoning and Planning Ordinance’?””
    2. For this Special Town Meeting, all town residents who are registered voters should obtain their voting card by signing in with the Supervisors of the Checklist when they arrive for the meeting with proper identification (picture ID).
    3. Motions to “call the question” (which limit debate) require a two-thirds vote. The Moderator may not accept motions to “call the question” if, in her judgement, all have not had a fair opportunity to express their views. The Moderator will not accept motions to “pass over,” “table” or “indefinitely postpone” an article. If citizens want to dispose of an article, they should simply vote the article down.
    4. Voting on the questions at hand for this Special Town Meeting will be by secret ballot. The voting process for secret ballots will be through the use of yes/no ballots which will be distributed at the time of the vote. Voting will occur in an orderly fashion at the time announced. Per RSA 675:4-a, the polls shall remain open at least 2 hours after debate has ended for the casting of ballots, at which time votes will be tallied. Special instructions will be given at the time of the vote.
    5. The question to be called at this Special Town Meeting is: “Shall the town adopt the provisions of RSA 674:24-29 entitled ‘Emergency Temporary Zoning and Planning Ordinance’?” Amendments are not allowed, as the ETZ (Emergency Temporary Zoning and Planning Ordinance) provisions of RSA 674:240-29 are either enacted in whole or not enacted.
    6. Motions to restrict reconsideration may not be brought up prior to a vote. Motions to restrict reconsideration may be brought up any time after a vote is taken (i.e after the two hour period of voting is complete). If the motion prevails, the item will not be reconsidered again during this meeting.
      1. Any person seeking to move to reconsider the vote on the ETZ shall affirm that they voted on the prevailing side.
    7. Upon approval of a motion to reconsider any vote or warrant article subject to such a restriction, actual reconsideration shall take place at an adjourned session of the meeting, held at least 7 days after the date on which the motion to reconsider was approved, with advanced public notice per RSA 40:10.
    8. A recount of secret ballot votes is possible at the request of 5 voters present at the meeting, provided that the vote margin is not more than 10 percent of the total vote cast. If appropriate, such recount will occur immediately after the vote total is announced.
  1. Seating Limitations

In order for registered voters to be able to participate easily in the meeting, it may be necessary to limit who can sit in the gym or even stand around the edge. Registered voters have priority. Others may be asked to leave if registered voters need to gain access to meeting space.

  1. General format for consideration a warrant article.
    1. Warrant article is read in full by Moderator.
    2. Motion to approve and second the article is taken
    3. Recognize the selectman or other spokesperson responsible for giving the town meeting the necessary background on the article under consideration.
    4. Open meeting for general discussion from the floor.
    5. Rules of Procedure for the July 23, 2019 Public Hearing will apply, except that only registered Dalton voters will be allowed to speak:The Moderator will call on individuals from the back of the room, left to right, working row by row to the front of the room unless a motion to call the question is made and passed. Each speaker will adhere to the followig protocol:
      • When acknowledged by the Moderator,
      • Speaker will move to one of the four microphones, if able. If not able to approach a microphone, the microphone will be brought to the speaker.
      • Each speaker is to introduce him/herself. Speakers shall be residents and registered voters of Dalton.
      • There will be a sign-up sheet to facilitate accurate recording of speaker information.
      • Each speaker will have three (3) minutes to speak.
      • Each speaker is to focus their comments/questions on the Emergency Temporary Zoning and Planning Ordinance under consideration.
      • Comments and questions are to be respectful and considerate of the town, town officers and employees, residents, non-residents, and of those with opposing opinions.
      • Speakers are requested to refrain from repeating positions and information already expressed by another speaker.
      • The Moderator will intervene if repetitive or inappropriate remarks are being presented.Decisions regarding the conduct of the meeting are the responsibility of the Town of Dalton Moderator.
    6. After the discussion the motion is re-stated for clarity.
    7. Voting shall be by secret ballot, based on the current the checklist, and the polls shall remain open at least 2 hours after debate has ended for the casting of ballots, at which time the ballets will be counted and the outcome announced.
7.30.19-Rules of Procedure for the Dalton Special Town Meeting