From the Teaching column of the December 2004 Perspectives
Resolution for the Business Meeting at the 119th Annual Meeting
AHA Staff, December 2004
Article VII of the AHA constitution states that the Association's Council shall call a business meeting, open to all members of the Association in good standing, to convene at the time of the annual meeting. The business meeting of the 119th annual meeting is scheduled for Saturday, January 8, 2005, in the Washington State Convention and Trade Center's Room 204, beginning at 4:45 p.m.
At the business meeting, AHA members can consider resolutions, deal with proposals of any kind concerning the affairs of the Association, receive reports of officers and committees, and instruct officers and the Council.
Bylaw 9(4), which provides procedures to carry out the provisions of Article VII regarding the business meeting, states that any member of the Association may present resolutions or other motions that introduce new business to the agenda of the annual business meeting. Such resolutions must be:
- received in the office of the AHA executive director not later than December 15 prior to the annual meeting,
- in proper parliamentary form,
- signed by at least 25 members of the Association in good standing,
- not more than 300 words in length including any introductory material, and
- deal with a matter of concern to the Association, to the profession of history, or to the academic profession.
Resolutions are placed on the agenda for consideration in the order in which they are received, but resolutions received on or before November 1 shall be published in the December newsletter and can—subject to the discretion of the Council—take precedence over other resolutions. Bylaw 9(5) states that no motion, resolution, or other business shall be passed by a division of the members at the annual business meeting unless there is present a quorum of 100 members in good standing.
All measures adopted by the business meeting come before the Council for acceptance, nonconcurrence, veto, or postponement. If accepted by the Council, they shall be binding on the Association.
The Council may veto any measure adopted by the business meeting that it believes to be in violation of the Association's constitution or which, on advice of counsel, it judges to be in violation of law. The Council shall publish an explanation for each such veto.
The Council may vote not to concur in any measure adopted by the business meeting. Within 90 days of the Council meeting following the business meeting, the Council shall publish its opinion of each measure with which it does not concur and submit the measure to a mail ballot of the entire membership. If approved by a majority of the members in the mail ballot, the measure shall be binding on the Association.
The Council may also postpone implementation of any measure adopted by the business meeting or approved by mail ballot that in its judgment is financially or administratively unfeasible. The Council shall publish an explanation of each such decision and justify it at the subsequent business meeting.
The following resolution, signed by more than 25 members of the AHA, was submitted to the AHA executive director for consideration at the January 8, 2005, business meeting:
Resolution on labor and AHA annual meetings:
Whereas, hotel union representation raises wages, supplies benefits, and protects worker dignity, thereby insuring that economic growth benefits a workforce often composed of people of color, and particularly women of color; and
Whereas, the American Historical Association's decision to hold meetings in union or non-union hotels strengthens or weakens the ability of these workers and their unions to secure better working conditions and contribute to equitable urban growth; therefore, be it
Resolved, that the American Historical Association will adopt, as part of its standing rules, a policy of union preference in negotiating hotel and service contracts for the Annual Meeting and for any other meetings organized by the American Historical Association; therefore be it further
Resolved, that those responsible for negotiating and administering said contracts shall, in accordance with this policy of union preference:
(A) select a union hotel and/or service provider if any such provider(s) respond(s) to a request for proposals; and
(B) take active measures to support workers in any labor disputes arising at a contracted hotel, such that meeting attendees will be not compelled to cross picket lines or violate a boycott; and
(C) add labor disputes to the standard escape clause in any AHA contract for convention hotels and meetings.