NACCS 45: Writing a NACCS Resolution



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Writing a NACCS Resolution

An effective resolution is one that conveys a sense of the issue or problem that led to the proposed action, provides an explanation or justification for the particular proposed solution, gives the reader enough background so he/she can understand what is being proposed, and makes it absolutely clear what people are voting on.

Typical resolutions have several parts:
The first line should be a brief descriptive title for the resolution
The second line should be the name of the originating Foco or Caucus
The third line should be a resolution designation number from the commission, such as NACCS Conference 2016
It is also helpful to include the following lines in the heading, with dates added as completed:

Approved by Foco/Caucus ________: (date)
Authors of Resolution;
Contact Information of Authors;

WHEREAS statements:
The WHEREAS statements are where you describe the problem or issue, the history or context for the policy if important, which bodies were involved in reviewing and advising on this policy proposal, and the general nature of the policy solution being proposed and why it solves the problem.
When these are well written, there is a kind of rolling logic to the statements. In some cases, the statements might be organized in chronological order.
While you should make sure you cover the topic well enough for an uninitiated reader to follow, typically a resolution should be one page or less, total. A very simple issue might require one or two WHEREAS statements. A more involved issue might require five or six WHEREAS statements, each a brief paragraph of several sentences.

This is the punchline. It is the action being taken. You should state EXACTLY what is to be voted upon. If the item is very brief, then it can be incorporated in this section of the resolution. If you are revising existing language, it is often very helpful to include the old version so that the reader can compare the two. If the new or revised policy statement is long, then this section might say: “That the attached policy on (subject) be adopted effective (date).” Then attach the complete policy statement clearly identified at the top.

It is VERY important to state exactly how the new or revised policy will go into effect. For example, policies affecting NACCS Officiers are incorporated in the NACCS Bylaws and a reference should be made to a specific bylaw that would be revised. You need to be specific about what should be revised and exactly what language is being proposed for the revision. The reason for this is obvious once you start the task– it often brings up issues that need more discussion and resolution if the policy is really going to be implemented.

Include an effective date for the policy (effective immediately? some subsequent term?)

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