April 29, 2013

Sedgwick County Commission to vote on limited-term rules of procedure

Without rules, anything goes.

Without rules, anything goes.

And that worries Sedgwick County Commission Chairman Jim Skelton, who has pushed for a formal set of rules for conducting meetings since he joined the commission in 2011.

On Wednesday, his fellow board members will vote on a resolution to adopt rules of procedure.

But the rules, if adopted, would be in force only during Skelton’s one-year term as chairman.

“In the absence of rules, there’s no parliamentary procedure. With these rules, there’s going to be parliamentary procedure. In the absence of that, anything goes,” Skelton said Friday.

Skelton said he helped write the new rules, which are based, in part, on “Robert’s Rules of Order.”

Skelton said commission meetings generally run without problems, but he said there were a few times a call for a substitute motion confused matters.

He said having set rules is “just a better way of doing things and eliminates confusion and arbitrary actions.”

Skelton said he expects some changes to the resolution. Commissioners will talk about it at their Tuesday meeting with staff members, he said.

Commissioner Dave Unruh said he thought the commission had operated fine without official rules but told Skelton he would support a resolution for his term.

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