[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Mullica 3-11-1986. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Administration of government — See Ch. 2.
The following rules of procedure shall govern the business of the Township Council.
Except as may be provided in the Administrative Code, questions of order, methods of organization and the conduct of business of the Council shall be governed by Robert's Rules of Order (the most recent revised edition) in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with the rules of procedure hereinafter set forth in these bylaws.
The Council shall meet annually for organization at 12:00 noon on the first day of January, at which time it shall select one of its members to serve as President and one as Vice President for the year and until the election and qualification of a successor. Election shall be by majority vote of the whole number of members of the Council. The President shall preside over all meetings of the Council and perform such other duties as the Council or the general law may prescribe. Newly elected members shall take and subscribe the oath of office at the annual organization meeting.
Thereafter, the Council shall, by resolution, designate the time of holding regular meetings, which shall be at least monthly. Such meetings shall, upon resolution of the Council, be held at the Township Hall.
The Council President may, and upon written request of three of the members of the Council shall, call a special meeting of the Council. In this call, he shall designate the purpose of the special meeting, and no other business shall be considered at such meeting. The call for a special meeting shall be filed in accordance with the Open Public Meetings Act.
Editor's Note: See N.J.S.A. 10:4-6 et seq.
All regular and special meetings of the Council and all executive sessions shall be open to the public, pursuant to the provisions of the Open Public Meetings Act, P.L. 1975, c. 231, effective January 21, 1976, which is made a part of these Rules of Procedure and of the Administrative Code by reference as if fully recited herein at length.
Editor's Note: See N.J.S.A. 10:4-6 to 10:4-21.
There shall be no standing committees of the Council other than the committee of the whole. The President of the Council shall appoint the members and the Chairperson for all special committees for legislative or investigative purposes. Said committee members shall serve for the term of such committee as designated by the President or until the committee issues a final report to the Council.
A majority of the whole number of the Council shall constitute a quorum, but no ordinance shall be adopted by the Council without the affirmative vote of a majority of all the members of the Council. The procedure for adopting ordinances shall be in accordance with the provisions of the Administrative Code.
If a quorum is not present 1/2 hour after the appointed time for any meeting, the person presiding or, in his absence, the Township Clerk may declare the meeting adjourned until the next day, unless, by majority agreement, those members present select another day.
All voting shall be by voice vote, and the ayes and nays shall be recorded in the minutes. The roll call shall be taken in alphabetical order, except that the presiding officer shall be polled last.
No action of the Council, except as otherwise provided herein, shall be valid or binding unless adopted with the concurrence of a majority of all the members of the Council.
For the purpose of performing duties, other than enacting legislation, which are properly exercisable by the Council under the provisions of the Administrative Code, the Council may sit in nonlegislative sessions at such times as it may determine.
Any and all matters to be presented to and acted upon by the Council at its regular meetings must be filed in the office of the Clerk not later than 12:00 noon six working days preceding the date of such meeting, and unless so filed, will not be considered by the Council until the next succeeding regular meeting of said Council, unless authorized by majority vote of the members present.
Presiding officer. The president and, in his absence, the Vice President shall take the Chair at the hour appointed for the meeting and shall immediately call the Council to order. In the absence of the President and the Vice President, the Clerk shall call the Council to order and shall determine whether a quorum is present. If a quorum is present, the Clerk shall call for the election of an Acting Chairperson.
[Amended 2-9-2010 by Ord. No. 3-2010]
Subject to the authority of the Chair, at each regular meeting of the Township Committee to divert from the regular posted agenda of such regular meeting, the order of business at each regular meeting shall be handled as follows:
Call to order.
Approval of minutes.
Early public comment on agenda items not otherwise subject to public hearing.
Introduction of ordinance.
Public hearings of ordinances on second reading.
Payment of bills.
Every member shall give his entire attention to the business under consideration during the sessions of the Council and shall not absent himself from the meeting until the hour of adjournment, except by permission of the President.
Every member desiring to speak shall address the presiding officer and, upon recognition, shall confine himself to the question under debate, avoiding all personalities and indecorous language. A member, once recognized, shall not be interrupted when speaking, unless it is to call him to order or as herein otherwise provided. If a member, while speaking, is called to order, he shall cease speaking until the question of order is determined by the presiding officer, and if in order, he shall be permitted to proceed. Any member may appeal to the Council from the decision of the Chair upon a question of order when, without debate, the Chair shall submit to the Council the question, "Shall the decision of the Chair be sustained?" and the Council shall decide by a majority vote.
Members of the public attending regularly scheduled meetings shall not be permitted to speak more than two times, not to exceed three minutes each time, on any one subject germane to an issue then before the Council, unless given special permission for extra time by majority vote of the Council members, and shall be heard only during that portion of the meeting as established by Rule 6.
The President shall preserve order and decorum and decide questions of order, subject to an appeal to the Council, which shall require a 2/3 vote to overrule.
Resolutions shall be prepared by the Township Solicitor upon request of a majority of the Council. Every proposed resolution shall be prepared in writing and may be introduced at any regularly scheduled meeting of the Council upon a motion and seconding, subject to Rule 5.
Ordinances shall be prepared by the Township Solicitor upon the request of a majority of Council. No ordinance, except those relating to the budget or appropriation of funds and those relating to the adoption or revision of the Administrative Code, shall contain more than one subject, which shall be clearly expressed in its title. The procedure for the passage of ordinances shall be that as set forth in the Administrative Code.
The Township Clerk shall, at least once each year, within the seven days following the annual organization meeting of the Council, post, for the purpose of public inspection, a schedule of the regular meetings of the Council to be held during the year in at least one public place reserved for such or similar announcements. She shall, in addition, mail or deliver a copy thereof to the two newspapers designated by the Council to receive notices of the meetings of the Council. The schedule shall contain the location of each meeting and the time and date thereof. In the event that such schedule is thereafter revised, she shall, within seven days following each revision, post, mail and submit such revision in the manner hereinabove set forth.
These bylaws may only be altered by means of a formal amendment, which shall be proposed, in writing, at the regular meeting next preceding and adopted by a majority of the members of the Council, but any of these bylaws may be suspended temporarily with the concurrence of 2/3 of the entire membership of the Council, unless such a suspension would be in violation of a statute of the State of New Jersey.