Parliamentary Procedure Q&A;

Q: What is the procedure for postponing something definitely, and picking it up at a later meeting? - Ian Prietz, Jan. 6, 2000

A: To Postpone Definitely:

  1. After being assigned the floor, move to postpone the question to a time later in that session or the next (as long as the next session is no more than a quarter year away). You may not postpone beyond the next regular session. (Most of the time, a session is the same as a meeting.)
  2. Another member seconds the motion.
  3. Debate may be given, but only about the merit of postponing, not about the main motion.
  4. A majority vote suffices to postpone.
If the postponement was for a particular time or after a specific event, the chairman revives the issue at that time, or thereafter when pending business is concluded. (E.g., if it was postponed until 3 p.m., and at 3 p.m. a different motion is being considered, the postponed motion is taken up after the pending motion is disposed of.) If the postponement was for the next meeting (or session), the chairman takes it up during General Orders, immediately after Unfinished Business. If several motions have been postponed to the same time, they are taken up in the order they were postponed. (See RONR Section 14.)

If the chairman fails to take up the postponed item at the appropriate time, any member may Call For The Orders Of The Day (see RONR Section 18).