Re: [802SEC] Quorum Rules in IEEE 802
Reading Robert's Rules on quorums:
From the introduction discussing the differences between legislative and non-legislative bodies:
"The members of a legislative body are generally paid to attend its daily meetings and can be legally compelled to do so, so that the quorum-in Congress, for example-is a majority of the members; but the quorum in a voluntary society must be much less if the organization is to be able to function."
From 3 Basic provisions and procedures discussing the purpose of a quorum rule:
"The requirement of a quorum is a protection against totally unrepresentative action in the name of the body by an unduly small number of persons. ... In an ordinary society, therefore, a provision of the bylaws should specify the number of members that shall constitute a quorum, which should approximate the largest number that can be depended on to attend any meeting except in very bad weather or other extremely unfavorable conditions. In the absence of such a provision in a society or assembly whose real membership can be accurately determined at any time-that is, in a body having an enrolled membership composed only of persons who maintain their status as members in a prescribed manner - the quorum is a majority of the entire membership, by the common parliamentary law."
As far as I recall when I started in 802 (20 years ago) there was a feeling that people should be able to participate fully by attending only the three plenary meetings a year. I think that is why they set the bar pretty high on being able to hold a non-plenary Working Group meeting. The text in Robert's Rules sounds as if a lower bar would be acceptable. I think that many of the groups regularly have significantly fewer than half the voters present at any given plenary meeting. It would be defensible to set the quorum for interims to something that reflects the low end of typical plenary Working Group attendance; perhaps 33% or 25%.
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