Mayor Shaw Makes a Mockery of Robert’s Rules of Order

February 8, 2019 Off By Jay Hubbard

August 6, 2018, Ramseur Board of Commissioners addresses the vacancy created by the death of Commissioner Joe Lineberry

A motion is made “to fill the vacant seat by nomination of applicants” by Commissioner Cheek. The Mayor raises his hand on the first vote and Commissioner Overman raises his hand to call a point of order and asks to be recognized. The mayor initially denies his request.

Commissioner Caudle asks for clarification of the motion and the mayor instructs Commissioner Cheek to “read it again” and Cheek stumbles through his motion again.

The question is called again and the votes split 2-2. Comissioner Overman points out that the mayor voted out of order and Mayor Shaw states that he “has the opportunity to vote on something like this.” which is categorically false. The mayor is not entitled to vote on this issue. He is only allowed a vote in case of a tie. The votes were tied, but regular order dictates that the mayor should wait until all the votes have been taken and a tie declared rather than assuming what the outcome will be.

Next the floor is opened for nominations: Grant Cheek nominated his neighbor, Ronald “Adam” Smith, Vickie Caudle nominated JC Parrish who was the runner up in our last election. The mayor then begins pushing for nominations to “cease, which means close”. Commissioner Overman then attempts to nominate Mr. Parrish again and they vote to close nominations.

The vote is called on the nomination of “Adam” Smith. Cheek and Cox immediately raise their hands in favor of the nomination. The mayor looks around and, seeing two votes in the affirmative doesn’t bother to follow regular order with a call for those opposed, and raises his hand as well.

This causes a mild disturbance among the board and the public in attendance. The mayor hastily calls for votes in favor of Mr. Parrish and Counsellor Bob Wilhoit is forced to intercede and explain regular order and procedure to the mayor, who prides himself on reminding citizens that he has served on the Board in one capacity or another for nearly 25 years. He should be well versed in procedure and regular order by now, should he not?

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