–submitted by Paul Riehemann and Karen Kendrick-Hands
We received a reply from Rotary International on the Going Green Fellowship Group’s (GGFG) Proposed Enactment which was endorsed by the District. It’s not good.
The Proposed Enactment asks that Clubs and RI be able to support the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate the global warming humanitarian crisis.
Letter to the District from RI’s Constitution and Bylaws [C&B] Committee –
2016 Council on Legislation: File 163-E. Excerpts:
The Committee has tentatively determined that file 163-E, proposed by the Rotary Club of Madison, is duly proposed, but defective under RI Bylaws section 7.037.2:
(a) it is subject to two or more inconsistent meanings
If the RI Board agrees with the Committee’s determination as to the status of your proposed legislation, it will not be transmitted to the 2016 Council for consideration. Even if it is transmitted to the Council, a member of the Constitution and Bylaws Committee may comment at the Council that the proposed legislation has been determined to be defective.
In their review of the legislation, the Committee made the following comments:
During its review of file 163, the Committee believed that this proposed
change would be inconsistent with the constitutional documents, as it could be
considered political in nature and would be in conflict with article 13, sections
1 and 3 of the Standard Rotary Club Constitution.
You may wish to be aware that the deadline to submit amendments to proposed legislation is 31 March 2015. Please respond with any amendments to your legislation as soon as possible.
District 6250 Reply –
With the support of many District and Club leaders, District Governor Dave Warren forwarded this REPLY. Excerpts:
- “It appears that the Constitution and Bylaws [C&B] Committee’s declaration of File 163-E-D to be defective was in error and contrary to Rotary International’s governance procedures.”
- “The C&B Committee has furnished no evidence or basis for the proposal’s susceptibility to two or more inconsistent meanings. That finding, we believe, is incorrect.
- “To bring its decision into compliance with RI’s governance procedures and to render an action that is “Fair to All Concerned”, Rotary District 6250 urges the C&B Committee to reconsider and alter its “tentative” action on File 163-E-D to advance the District 6250’s proposal for consideration at the 2016 Council on Legislation.”
- “District 6250’s Going Green Fellowship Group proceeded precisely as then President Elect Gary Huang advised when he spoke at the Rotary Club of Madison, saying that initiatives in Rotary “must begin with the club.” We are deeply disappointed that the C&B Committee is considering keeping our duly proposed and endorsed enactment from reaching the 2016 Council on Legislation for their consideration.”
RI Response –
The Committee will review and discuss your letter at their April 28-29 meeting. Based on the results of that discussion, the Committee would be able to extend the deadline for amendments, to allow your district time to address any concerns.
We’re confident that the C&B Committee and Rotary will follow the Four-Way Test here. We are not going to make any amendments at this time since we don’t have any feedback on the concerns raised.
The Proposed Enactment asks for an exception to Rotary’s non-political stance to fully empower RI and Clubs to support the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate the global warming humanitarian crisis (GWHC). Some believe that the GWHC is not political. Under these dictionary definitions of “political” we believe action on the GWHC is political, as is Rotary’s successful campaign to assist in the eradication of polio.
- relating to the government, the state or the public affairs
- of or relating to citizens
- having a definite policy
Additionally, some solutions will require legislation – see the Group’s Open Letter.
We’re heartened by the support of so many in District 6250 and our Club and will keep you posted.