Proposed Rule to Ban Applause Postponed Briefly but Still Likley

Commissioner Scott Helton’s proposed Commission Rule 4G, which would ban all applause at Commission meetings except for items on the consent calender and was approved by the Rules Ad Hoc Committee, was delayed pending the Ad Hoc Committee’s next meeting.

The proposed rule states:
4G.  PURPOSE AND DECORUM:  The purpose of the meeting of the Board is to conduct the legislative business of Blount County in an orderly and businesslike manner.  Proper decorum and order shall be maintained by all persons in attendance.  Actions which disrupt or delay the orderly transaction of business are prohibited, including but not limited to the following: public outcry or protest, public applause or other interruption except that applause and public support is appropriate during the consent calender portion of the meeting when citizens or organizations are recognized.  Pursuant to Rule 13, the Chairman is charged with preserving order and decorum and any persons violating this rule are subject to the removal from the meeting at the sound discretion of the Chairman.This proposed Rule was approved unanimously by all Ad Hoc members that were present at the last meeting.  Commissioners present and voting yes were Carver, French, Hasty, and Lewis.  Commissioners Caylor and Murrell were absent from that meeting.

Rule 10 requires a 2/3’s majority of the total membership to enact this rule.  This means 14 Commissioners must vote for the rule to ban applause at Commission meetings. 
Any rule or rules may be suspended or changed by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the total membership.

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