Rules of Order

This online offering of the Plan of Order only covers section 5, Rules of Order.  The complete PDF of the the Plan of Order is available below.

5.1  PRE-CONFERENCE

5.1.1    Reports.

5.1.1.1   All agencies that are directly amenable to the annual conference (enumerated hereinabove) and director-level staff of the annual conference are required to submit an annual report to the conference secretary no later than February 15.  These reports shall be available on the conference website no later than April 1 and shall be included in the conference journal.  Each agency’s report shall include the report of any agencies amenable to it. (See § 5.1.1.4, below.)

5.1.1.2  Notwithstanding § 5.1.1.1, the Board of Pension and Health Benefits and the Director of Administrative Services and Conference Treasurer shall submit an annual report no later than March 31.

5.1.1.3  Notwithstanding § 5.1.1.1, the Committee on Nominations shall submit an annual report no later than the start of the annual conference session.

5.1.1.4  All agencies not directly amenable to the annual conference (enumerated hereinabove) shall submit a report to the agency to which they are amenable no later than January 20. These reports shall be included in the reports of those supervising agencies as specified in § 5.1.1.1, above.

5.1.1.5  The report of the conference statistician shall be available on the conference website no later than March 31 and  shall be printed in the Journal.

5.1.1.6  The proposed plan of organization of the annual conference shall be made available on the conference website no later than April 15 and shall be printed in the  Journal.

5.1.2    Resolutions.

5.1.2.1  A resolution – a motion to initiate new business in the annual conference session – may be submitted by any of the following:

5.1.2.1.1  A clergy member of the annual conference.

5.1.2.1.2   A professing member of a local church within the annual conference.

5.1.2.1.3   A specific person on behalf of   an agency or other subdivision of the annual conference.

5.1.2.1.4  A specific person on behalf of a local church or ministry setting of the annual conference or a committee thereof.

5.1.2.2  All resolutions, upon being introduced in the annual conference session, must be presented by a member (clergy or lay) of the annual conference. The presenter of  the resolution need not be the author of the resolution.

5.1.2.3  All resolutions must be submitted in writing to the Legislative Coordinator no later than February 15.

5.1.2.4   A copy of any resolution that would require an expenditure of more than $1000 must be sent to the Council on Finance and Administration, along with a five- year cost projection, no later than February 1.

5.1.2.5   If a resolution is submitted by multiple persons or entities, only the name of the person(s) actually signing it shall be published as the submitter.  If more than two people actually sign a resolution, only the first two names will be published, along with the total number of additional  signers.

5.1.2.6  Resolutions may be accompanied by a rationale, which shall not exceed 300 words.

5.1.2.7   The Committee on Rules reserves the right to edit any resolution for grammar, spelling, and clarity. The committee’s edits shall not substantively alter the resolution.

5.1.2.8   Anyone submitting a resolution that affects other people  or other entities is strongly encouraged to consult with the affected parties before submitting the resolution.

5.1.2.9  Anyone wishing to introduce a resolution (that was not timely submitted) directly in the plenary at the Annual Conference session must (in addition to requesting a suspension of the rules [§ 5.1.2.3]) have brought the following:

5.1.2.9.1  At least 1700 paper copies of the   resolution.

5.1.2.9.2  A copy of the resolution on a thumb drive.

5.1.3    All resolutions and other items that must be voted or acted upon by the  annual conference shall be posted to the conference website no later  than April 15.

5.1.4    All requests for presentation time at the annual conference session must be made to the Commission on the Annual Conference Session no later than February 15. The granting of such requests shall be at the discretion of the Commission on the Annual Conference Session.

5.2       MEMBERSHIP

5.2.1    The annual conference membership shall be composed of the following:

5.2.1.1  Clergy members as defined in ¶¶ 32 and 602 of The Book of Discipline.

5.2.1.2  At least one lay person elected by each charge.

5.2.1.2.1  A charge that has more than one church with 101 or more professing members shall elect one lay member for each church with 101 or more professing members.

5.2.1.2.2  Each charge with more than one clergy person under episcopal appointment shall be entitled to as many lay members as it has clergy under episcopal appointment.

5.2.1.2.3  Churches with more than 167 professing members shall be entitled to at least one lay member for every 167 professing members or major fraction thereof.

5.2.1.2.4   Lay members shall have been professing members of The United Methodist Church for at least two years and shall have been active participants in The United Methodist Church for at least four years.

5.2.1.2.5  The rule that lay members shall have been professing members of The United Methodist Church for at least two years (§ 5.2.1.2.4, above) shall not apply in the case of youth (under age 18).

5.2.1.3    Deaconesses and home missioners under episcopal appointment within the bounds of the annual conference.

5.2.1.4   Diaconal ministers who are members of a local church within the annual conference.

5.2.1.5  Presidents of the conference United Methodist Women and United Methodist Men.

5.2.1.6    Conference lay leader.

5.2.1.7  District lay leaders.

5.2.1.8 Convener of the Division of Youth Ministry of the Board of Young People’s Ministries.

5.2.1.9  Convener of the Division of Young Adult Ministry of the Board of Young People’s Ministries.

5.2.1.10   One person between the ages of 12 and 18, inclusive, from each district.

5.2.1.11  One person between the ages of 18 and 30, inclusive, from each district.

5.2.1.12  Conference director of lay servant ministries.

5.2.1.13  Conference secretary of global ministries.

5.2.2    In order to equalize lay and clergy membership as required by ¶¶ 32 and 602.4 of The Book of Discipline, the following persons, when laity, shall be  members of the annual conference in the order listed below.

5.2.2.1 Conference secretary.

5.2.2.2  Conference chancellor.

5.2.2.3  Annual Conference Coordinator.

5.2.2.4   Director of Administrative Services/Conference Treasurer (see The Book of Discipline, ¶ 619).

5.2.2.5   Conference parliamentarian.

5.2.2.6  Associate conference lay leader.

5.2.2.7   Director of Connectional Ministries (see The Book of  Discipline, ¶ 608).

5.2.2.8  Any other conference director.

5.2.2.9  Any conference associate director.

5.2.2.10  Chairperson of the Committee on the Episcopacy.

5.2.2.11  Persons serving on general or jurisdictional agencies or the Connectional Table.

5.2.2.12  Delegates to General and Jurisdictional Conferences for the four Annual Conference sessions following their election.

5.2.2.13  Conference statistician.

5.2.2.14  Members of the Committee on Rules.

5.2.2.15   Members of the Conference Leadership Council.

5.2.2.16  Members of the Council on Finance and Administration.

5.2.2.17  Trustees of the annual conference.

5.2.2.18   Legislative coordinator.

5.2.2.19   Conference facilitator.

5.2.2.18    Members of the Commission on the Annual Conference Session.

5.2.2.19  Members of the Committee on the Journal.

5.2.2.20 Members of the Board of Ordained Ministry.

5.2.2.21  Chairpersons of other conference agencies (enumerated in §§ 1-4, above).

5.2.3    Any remaining lay members necessary for equalization shall be selected  by the Board of Laity.

5.2.4    The following, if laity, shall be granted voice but not vote:

5.2.4.1 A representative from each of the affiliate entities enumerated in § 10, below.

5.2.4.2   Affiliate clergypersons.

5.3  RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE COST OF ATTENDANCE

5.3.1    Active clergy – The local church or ministry to which clergy are appointed shall pay for registration, room, and board.

5.3.2    Retired clergy (except as stated in § 5.3.7, below).

5.3.2.1  The annual conference shall pay for registration.

5.3.2.2  Retired clergy shall pay for their own room and board.

5.3.3    Laity representing charges – The charge shall pay for registration, room, and board.

5.3.4    Laity attending by virtue of office (enumerated in §§ 5.2.1.3 through 5.2.1.13 and 5.2.2, above) – The annual conference shall pay for  registration, room, and board.

5.3.5    Laity selected by the Board of Laity (as per § 5.2.3, above) – The annual conference shall pay for registration, room, and board.

5.3.6    Those who are being received into provisional membership and who are not currently serving as local pastors – the Board of Ordained Ministry shall pay for registration, room, and board.

5.3.7    Notwithstanding § 5.3.2, above, the Board of Ordained Ministry shall pay for registration, room, and board for retired clergy serving on the Board of Ordained Ministry.

5.4  THE ANNUAL CONFERENCE SESSION

5.4.1    In accordance with ¶ 603.2 of The Book of Discipline, the Bishop shall determine the time of the annual conference session.

5.4.2    The Commission on the Annual Conference Session shall determine the place and the program for the annual conference session.

5.4.3    In addition to the business (plenary) sessions of the annual conference, the following sessions shall also be held:

5.4.3.1   An orientation session for lay members of the annual conference shall be held early in the conference session. It is recommended that this be  done as early as possible.

5.4.3.2  Clergy session.

5.4.3.2.1   A clergy session shall be held at which questions relating to matters of ordination, character, and conference relations of  clergy shall be attended to.

5.4.3.2.2   Ordained clergy and lay members of the Board of Ordained Ministry shall have voice and vote in the clergy session.

5.4.3.2.3  Non-ordained clergy shall have voice, but no vote in the clergy session.

5.4.3.2.4   Lay persons, other than those serving on the Board of Ordained Ministry, shall not be admitted to the clergy session unless the clergy session shall expressly authorize otherwise.

5.4.3.3  Corporate session.

5.4.3.3.1  A corporate session shall be held to handle any corporate matters that may be required by the laws of the State of Michigan and any other business specified by the Board of Trustees.

5.4.3.3.2   The chair of the Board of Trustees shall preside at the corporate session.

5.4.4    All materials distributed by the ushers at the annual conference session must be approved by either the Commission on the Annual Conference Session or the Committee on Rules.

5.4.5    Voting area.

5.4.5.1   At the first business session of the annual conference session, a voting bar shall be fixed.  All members of the annual conference, lay and clergy, must display a membership badge in order to be admitted to the bar of the conference.

5.4.5.2   Except for volunteers assisting with the functioning of the annual conference session (e.g., ushers and pages), paid personnel acting within the course of their duties (e.g., audio-visual technicians and facilities staff), area office staff, and anyone entitled to voice but not vote in the annual conference session (as enumerated in § 5.2.4, above), no one who is not a voting member of the annual conference shall be allowed in the bar of the conference when the conference is in session. 

5.4.5.3  Except by leave of the annual conference, no member who is not within the bar of the conference at the time a question is called for shall be allowed to vote.

5.4.6    Accessibility – Handicap accessible seating areas shall be clearly marked at all Annual Conference business sessions.

5.4.7    Voting procedure.

5.4.7.1   All voting shall be by show of colored placards unless otherwise directed by the presiding officer. A division of the house shall occur upon motion for same, supported by at least one-fifth of the members present and voting.

5.4.7.2  Except as otherwise directed by The Book of Discipline or by these rules, all questions shall be decided by a simple majority of those present and voting.

5.4.8    No later than 11:00 a.m., the minutes of the previous day’s proceedings shall be made publicly available for viewing, by posting in a conspicuous place at the site of the conference session, posting to the conference website, or e-mailing to conference members.

5.4.9    Reports timely submitted for approval need not be read aloud or read into the record before being voted upon.

5.4.10  Introductions of speakers shall be limited to two minutes.

5.4.11  Opportunity shall be given for announcements to be read by the conference secretary at the close of each business session.

5.4.12  Procedures governing speeches from the floor of the business session.

5.4.12.1  Microphones shall be placed around the conference floor so that members may speak from near their seats.

5.4.12.2  Any member desiring to speak in debate, present any matter, or make any motion shall raise the provided colored placard while seated and wait to be recognized by the chair.

5.4.12.3  Upon being recognized by the chair, members shall proceed to the microphone to which they were directed and before saying anything else shall give their name and the church or extension ministry to which they are appointed (in the case of active clergy), church (in the case of laity representing their local church pursuant to § 5.2.1.2, above), agency or position (in the case of laity who are members by virtue of office pursuant to § 5.2.2, above), equalization status (in the case of laity selected by the Board of Laity pursuant to § 5.2.3, above), or retired status (in the case of retired clergy).

5.4.12.4  After identifying themselves, members speaking to a motion shall state whether they are speaking for or against said motion.

5.4.12.5   Any member desiring to speak on a question of privilege shall, upon being recognized by the chair, briefly state the question but shall proceed only when the chair has decided it to be a privileged question.

5.4.12.6    No member shall speak more than twice as to the same motion.

5.4.12.7   Speeches shall be no longer than three minutes in duration. This time period shall begin after a speaker has been properly recognized by the Chair and has properly introduced himself/herself.

5.4.12.8   Except for non-debatable motions, no resolution, report, or motion shall be adopted or a question relating thereto decided without opportunity having been given for at least three speeches in favor thereof and three speeches against.

5.4.12.9   Before debate on any resolution begins, the presenter or his/her representative shall have the opportunity to speak for up to three minutes.

5.4.12.10   At the conclusion of debate on any main motion, the presenter of said motion or his/her representative shall be entitled to speak up to one minute even after the previous question has been called.

5.4.13  Legislative committees.

5.4.13.1   The Committee on Rules shall, in consultation with the Commission on the Annual Conference Session, decide the number of legislative committees into which the annual conference will be divided.

5.4.13.2  The conference registrar shall randomly assign all members to a legislative committee, with care being given to make certain that members with disabilities be assigned to a committee meeting in a room with barrier-free access.

5.4.13.3  All resolutions to come before the annual conference shall be assigned by the Committee on Rules to any of the legislative committees. The Committee on Rules may, at its discretion assign resolutions directly to the plenary, by-passing legislative committees. Such an action should only be taken in cases where a resolution is non-controversial and/or highly technical in nature.

5.4.13.4  All resolutions, upon initially being brought to the floor (whether in a legislative committee or in the plenary) shall be introduced by a presenter who must be a member of the annual conference. The presenter shall have up to three minutes to speak to the resolution before debate begins.  At the conclusion of debate, the presenter of said motion shall be entitled to speak up to three minutes even after the previous question has been called.  No resolution shall be considered by its assigned committee unless a presenter is present at the committee session. In the event no presenter for a resolution is present, no one may designate himself/herself as a presenter.

5.4.13.5   All rules governing debate in the plenary session shall govern debate in legislative committees.

5.4.13.6   Notwithstanding § 5.4.13.2, the chairperson and recorder of a given legislative committee shall be members (with all privileges appertaining thereto) of that committee only.

5.4.13.7   Notwithstanding § 5.4.13.2, the presenter of a resolution being considered by a given legislative committee shall be a member of that committee only.

5.4.13.8  If a resolution has more than one presenter, only one of those presenters shall be entitled to voice and vote in the committee (except for presenters who were originally selected by the registrar as members of that committee).

5.4.13.9   Irrespective of the number of resolutions a member submits, he/she shall only serve as a presenter for one resolution. A member submitting more than one resolution shall be responsible for recruiting another member to serve as presenter for each additional resolution submitted.

5.4.13.10  When a legislative committee votes in favor of a resolution, the resolution shall come before the plenary as perfected for ordinary debate and discussion in accordance with all applicable rules.

5.4.13.11  When a legislative committee votes against a resolution, the question of whether to consider that resolution notwithstanding the vote of the legislative committee shall be brought to the plenary. Only in the event that at least 20% of the plenary votes in favor of consideration shall the resolution then be considered by the plenary.

5.4.13.12  When the question of consideration of a resolution notwithstanding the vote of the legislative committee is brought before the plenary in accordance with § 5.4.13.11, the presenter of the resolution shall not have the opportunity to speak before the vote on whether to consider the resolution is taken.  Should the plenary vote to consider a resolution notwithstanding the vote of the legislative committee, the presenter shall then have the opportunity to speak for up to three minutes before debate begins and shall have the right to give a concluding speech (§ 5.4.12.10).

5.4.13.13  A legislative committee may only consider business assigned to it by the Committee on Rules, except that any substitute resolution duly moved by a member of the  legislative committee shall be considered by the committee.

5.4.13.14  At the discretion of the Commission on the Annual Conference Session, a non-legislative discussion item may be assigned to the several legislative committees provided that such discussion advances a clearly defined purpose.

5.4.13.15   After the legislative committees have concluded their  business, the Legislative Coordinator shall compile a  written report of their work, to be presented to the plenary as soon as possible. The report shall contain the   following:

5.4.13.15.1  Editorial corrections to any resolutions.

5.4.13.15.2  Proposed amendments (to any resolutions or substitute resolutions), including the results of the votes thereon.

5.4.13.15.3  Proposed secondary amendments (to any resolutions or substitute resolutions),  including the results of the votes thereon.

5.4.13.15.4  Proposed substitute resolutions, including  the results of the votes thereon.

5.4.13.15.5  The results of the final votes taken on all  resolutions (or substitutes thereto).

5.4.13.15.6      The names of the committee chairs and recorders.

5.4.13.15.7  A listing of which resolutions have been  placed on the consent calendar (see § 5.4.14, below).

5.4.13.16   Once adopted, all resolutions shall be valid until the close of the Annual Conference session eight years thence (unless otherwise prohibited by The Book of Discipline).

5.4.14  Consent calendar.

5.4.14.1  Any resolution (or substitute resolution) that sustains a vote of concurrence by at least nine-tenths of its legislative committee shall be placed on the conference consent calendar.

5.4.14.2  All resolutions placed on the conference consent calendar shall be considered en masse by the plenary, whose consideration of the consent calendar shall not be subject to debate, amendment, or substitution.

5.4.14.3   Notwithstanding § 5.4.14.2, any resolution may be removed from the consent calendar by a vote of at least two-fifths of the plenary. Any resolution, upon being removed from the consent calendar, shall be considered  as an ordinary item of business.

5.4.14.4   The consent calendar shall not be brought to a vote until at least two hours after it has been distributed to the members of the conference.

5.4.15  Adopted resolutions.

5.4.15.1  All adopted resolutions shall be published on the conference website as soon as is practical.

5.4.15.2  The conference secretary shall determine which resolutions require action by an agency, officer, or employee of the annual conference and shall, as soon as is practical after the close of the annual conference session, submit the relevant resolution(s) to the parties of whom action is required.

5.4.15.3   Any resolution or any portion of a resolution subsequently ruled by a bishop’s decision of law to be null, void, and/or of no effect shall immediately be removed from the conference website, and all conference action thereon shall immediately cease. In the event that the Judicial Council fails to sustain the ruling of the Bishop in whole or in part, any reinstated portion of the resolution shall immediately be returned to the conference website, and all conference action thereon shall immediately resume.

 5.4.15.4  Except as otherwise specified either therein or by The Book of Discipline, all resolutions adopted by the annual conference shall be valid from the close of the annual conference session until the close of the following annual                                                           conference session.

5.5       NOMINATIONS

 5.5.1    Each agency shall annually review its membership to identify members who have not functioned.  After consultation with the person(s) so    identified, a written request for replacement shall be sent to the Committee on Nominations no later than January 10, with a copy of such  request sent to the person(s) so identified.

5.5.2    Any agency wishing to suggest nominees may do so by submitting the request in writing to the Committee on Nominations no later than January 10.

5.5.3    Except as otherwise required by The Book of Discipline, all terms of office  shall begin at the close of the annual conference session.

5.5.4    Aside from ex officio membership, no one may serve on more than two agencies at once.

5.5.5    The Committee on Nominations, when nominating persons for agency membership, shall give primary consideration to aptness, experience,  diversity, inclusiveness, and efficiency.

5.5.6    Aside from ex officio membership, no employee of the annual conference shall be eligible to serve on an agency that has supervisory responsibility over the area of that employee’s work.

5.5.7    Except as otherwise provided herein, no district superintendent shall serve on a conference agency.

5.5.8    At the annual conference session immediately following General Conference, the annual conference shall elect people – nominated by the Committee on Nominations in consultation with the Conference Leadership Council – to the following positions:

5.5.8.1  Secretary.

5.5.8.2   Director of Administrative Services and Conference Treasurer (see The Book of Discipline, ¶ 619).

5.5.8.3  Statistician.

5.6       DEPENDENT CARE

5.6.1    While carrying out the responsibilities of the annual conference or any agency thereof, members may be reimbursed for dependent care provided in their homes.  Such reimbursement shall not exceed ten hours  per day and shall not exceed minimum wage.

5.6.2    Each agency shall be responsible for budgeting for appropriate dependent care expenses when considering its membership and time requirements.

5.6.3    Dependent care expenses shall be vouchered and reimbursed.

5.6.4    Local churches are encouraged to support members in need of dependent care for conference responsibilities by volunteering to provide dependent care whenever possible.

5.6.5    Agency members are encouraged to enlist family members and friends for dependent care whenever possible.

5.6.6    Conference agencies may choose to provide on-site childcare. In such cases, parents shall be responsible for bringing necessary items (e.g., toys, lunches) for their children. The conference protection policy (§ 8, below) shall be strictly followed.

5.7  GENERAL AND JURISDICTIONAL CONFERENCES

 5.7.1    Nomination of candidates for General and Jurisdictional Conference delegation.

5.7.1.1   Nomination forms designed by the Committee on Rules  and the Order of Business shall be made available on the  conference website no later than October 15 of the calendar year preceding delegate elections.

5.7.1.2   Candidates may be nominated by themselves or by another clergy member of the annual conference (in the case of clergy) or by another professing member of a local church within the annual conference (in the case of laity).

5.7.1.3  The names of the candidates and the information on their nomination forms shall be posted to the conference website no later than April 1.

5.7.2    Election of delegates.

 5.7.2.1   Elections shall occur at the annual conference session in the calendar year immediately preceding General Conference.

 5.7.2.2   The Commission on the Annual Conference Session shall appoint a group of tellers, who shall be composed of  people ineligible (as per ¶¶ 35-36 of The Book of Discipline) and/or unwilling to serve as delegates.

5.7.2.3  The election of General Conference delegates and Jurisdictional Conference delegates shall constitute a  single process, with General Conference delegates being                      elected first.

5.7.2.4   Eligible voters may vote for as many different people as are being elected on a particular ballot.

5.7.2.5   In order to be elected, a candidate must receive a vote on  a simple majority of valid (i.e., non-defective) ballots cast.

5.7.2.6  Clergy and laity ballots shall be taken separately, alternating between the two.

5.7.2.7   After the designated number of delegates for General  Conference has been elected, the election of Jurisdictional Conference delegates shall begin on the following ballot.

5.7.2.8   The Jurisdictional Conference delegates shall serve as  reserve delegates to General Conference in the order elected.

5.7.2.9   After the designated number of delegates for Jurisdictional Conference has been elected, an additional ballot shall be taken, on which the two highest vote-getters (regardless of whether their vote totals constitute a majority) shall be elected as reserve delegates to Jurisdictional Conference.

5.7.2.10   Ties shall be broken by the casting of lots.

5.7.2.11  All conference members must be seated in the bar of the                                                            conference at the time a vote is taken in order to vote.

5.7.2.12  A ballot that includes more votes than people being elected on that ballot shall be invalid and shall not be  counted in the vote total.

5.7.2.13  After each vote, the secretary of the conference (or a person designated by him/her) shall announce the number of votes received by all candidates who received at least 10 votes.

5.7.2.14  Write-in votes shall be allowed on any ballot, provided the name being written in meets the requirements set forth in  ¶¶ 35-36 of The Book of Discipline.

 5.7.2.15   Candidates’ names need not be spelled correctly on a  ballot. Any ballot on which the intent of the voter can be  reasonably discerned will be counted.

5.7.3    Petitions to General and Jurisdictional Conferences.

 5.7.3.1   Anyone eligible to submit a resolution to the annual  conference may submit a proposed petition to General or Jurisdictional Conferences for endorsement by the annual   conference.

5.7.3.2  Petitions to General or Jurisdictional Conferences shall be treated like resolutions except that they shall not be subject to amendment (although they shall be subject to substitution, and substitute motions shall be subject to amendment).

5.7.4    Endorsement of episcopal nominees.

5.7.4.1  At the session of the annual conference immediately prior to Jurisdictional Conference, the annual conference may  endorse any number of episcopal nominees, up to the number of bishops being elected.

5.7.4.2   The Jurisdictional Conference delegation, at its discretion, may nominate candidates for endorsement.

5.7.4.3   Immediately following the presentation of the candidates for endorsement recommended by the Jurisdictional  Conference delegation, any conference member may make a nomination from the floor.

5.7.4.4  Any full elder eligible for the office of bishop may be  endorsed for election.  A full elder need not be a member of the annual conference or a declared candidate for the episcopacy in order to be endorsed.

 5.7.4.5 A ballot shall be taken no less than four hours after nominations are made.

5.7.4.6  Members may vote for up to the number of episcopal vacancies in the jurisdiction or the number of nominations, whichever is fewer.  Provision shall be made on each ballot for a vote of no endorsement.

5.7.4.7   A nominee must receive a vote on at least 60% of the valid (i.e., non-defective) ballots in order to receive the endorsement of the annual conference.

5.7.4.8    The number of ballots taken shall be equal to the number of episcopal vacancies, except that no further ballots shall be taken if either of the following occurs:

5.7.4.8.1  The number of candidates who have received the endorsement of the annual conference has reached the number of episcopal vacancies.

5.7.4.8.2   At least 60% of the valid (i.e., non-defective) ballots cast are for a vote of no endorsement.

5.8   PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY

 5.8.1    The proceedings of the annual conference shall be governed by the following in order of priority and precedence:

5.8.1.1   The Book of Discipline.

5.8.1.2  The acts of the preceding North Central Jurisdictional Conference.

5.8.1.3   The Plan of Organization of the Michigan Annual Conference.

5.8.1.4   Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (11th edition).

5.8.2    The Plan of Organization of the Michigan Annual Conference shall remain in force and effect until repealed, amended, or superseded by a vote of at least two-thirds of the annual conference.

]5.8.3    Notwithstanding § 5.8.2, if any portion of the Plan of Organization of the Michigan Annual Conference be invalidated, either directly or indirectly, by General Conference, the Judicial Council, or an episcopal ruling of law,  the remaining portions of the Plan of Organization shall remain in effect.

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