Fineberg and Flaherty owe Tinkle an apology for “misuse” of meeting rules

Posted on October 07, 2019, 9:55 am
3 mins

The misconduct of Chairperson Margaret Fineberg when it comes to the Stoneybrook parking issue seems to know no bounds. Although this time she had an assist from Supervisor Kathleen Flaherty.

During the October 3 Gateway District meeting Supervisor Ed Tinkle made a motion to instruct Gateway’s lawyer Tony Pires to get an Attorney General opinion as to whether a CDD can transfer ownership of roads they own to a Home Owners Association. That way the Stoneybrook question could be put to bed once and for all.

Although it’s highly unlikely to succeed, Tinkle’s approach seemed like a cheap and easy way to try and find a resolution to the situation that would make everyone happy. But what’s beginning to come out is that the three Supervisors from Stoneybrook are against the direct ownership of roads in their community, and we’ll get in to that in November, because …

Before Tinkle’s motion received a second, Supervisor Kathleen Flaherty made a motion to table the entire discussion until November 7 – and that’s where the violation of meeting rules occurred. It was made much worse when Fineberg, who runs the meetings, didn’t put a stop to it.

I know people are skeptical of when I explain laws and rules, so I’ll let another publication lay this one out:

Under Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (the book used by most organizations), the subsidiary motion to lay on the table is properly used only when it is necessary to suspend consideration of a main motion in order to deal with another matter that has come up unexpectedly and which must be dealt with before the pending motion can be properly addressed. It has, however, become common to misuse this motion to end consideration of the pending main motion without debate, or to mistakenly assume that its adoption prevents further consideration of the main motion at all, or until a specified time.

Robert’s Rules are the rules that Gateway meetings operate under. They say you can’t just make a motion to table or suspend a discussion to adopt a previous motion just because you don’t like what’s being discussed.

That’s what Flaherty did. And that’s what Fineberg allowed to happen on October 3.

It doesn’t work that way, and it’s a clear violation of Gateway’s meeting rules.

Tinkle’s motion should have been debated and voted on, and both Fineberg and Flaherty owe Tinkle a strong apology.

Editor of the Gateway Sun and owner of restaurant delivery service Florida Food Runner.

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