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Proposal Details

Proposal ID56
ProposalCreation and charge of a USGP Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC)
PresenterBy-laws, Rules, Policies and Procedures (BRPP) Committee of the USGP
Floor ManagerGreg Gerritt
Discussion10/20/2003 - 11/09/2003
Voting11/10/2003 - 11/16/2003
Presens Quorum28 0.6666
Consens Quorum51 0.6666 of Yes and No Votes


As discussed at our CC meeting in Washington D.C. this past July, the creation of a DRC is of major importance to the delegates.

Therefore the BRPP recommends that the Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC) be formed under the specific guidelines stated under Proposal.

In addition the BRPP recommends the following provisions be addressed in the DRCs Policy and Procedure (P&P) document as required under USGP by-laws:

1) The BRPP sees that different types of disputes may require different types of mediation. It also notes that at certain stages of disputes, expectations of confidentiality and privacy may be important.

We therefore would like to see a two stage process.

We see simple disputes as being able to be first mediated and then resolved within the DSC using in-house mediators with experience in dispute resolution. We would encourage all disputants to directly submit their disputes to the DRC for resolution without any outside entity being involved and would urge the DRC to formulate rules for this circumstance. In these cases, we advise the DRC to adhere to confidentiality and privacy concerns of the disputants.

We also recognize that some situations will go beyond this stage and urge the DRC to formulate rules for these circumstances. In these cases we recommend that the disputants be required to ask the Coordinating Committee (CC) for permission to invoke DRC procedures for binding arbitration or a Green Court which would be the final arbiter of the matter.

We recommend the DRC set up a system for outside consultation with professionals that meet certain credentialing standards, as delineated by the DRC in their P&P document and approved by the CC.

2) We also recognize that this document is silent on the matter of resolution of matters of interpretation of by-laws, rules, policies and procedures when they are deemed ambiguous. We believe that this DRC is not the appropriate place for this type of dispute resolution if the above guidelines are adhered to. We therefore recommend one of two solutions:

*A) To formulate a rules determination/interpretation committee that shall recruit and appoint judges whose decisions are final or

*B) Allow the BRPP to form a subcommittee, delineated by a policy and procedure document to be approved by the CC, to make judgments on disputes over rules.

While the BRPP endeavors to write clear and precise rules, it can never be assured that persons will not find ambiguities in them if they are so disposed.

The USGP must have a body to make these determinations -- a body that is free from political concerns. While a system for doing this is not yet devised by the BRPP, we will, if the charge is given to us, endeavor to formulate such a policy internal to the committee or otherwise.

3) We also prefer to leave credentialing of Dispute Team members to the DRC P&P document since we do not have the expertise on this committee to delineate professional standards. We recommend that persons who do the actual mediation, dispute resolution or arbitration have minimal educational and professional credentials, preferably a degree in the subject matter or related field and/ or adequate professional experience in the field.

4) While we discussed extensively whether the CC or SC should be responsible for referring binding decisions to the DRC, we have realized that these disputes may involve SC members and therefore, those should be the provenance of the CC. Even though confidentiality and privacy might be better maintained by the SC, which has some processes in development for maintaining privacy, to the extent that actual personnel are not involved and the decision to send the dispute to the DRC to take it to a final outcome stage remains with the individuals involved (with the approval of the CC), we have opted to recommend that the CC be the final authority for giving final authority to the DRC, although appropriate body still appears in the by-laws in order to give flexibility in some cases.


Resolved: The USGP Coordinating Committee shall create a standing Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC)

The DRC shall :

1) be responsible for mediation and resolution of all disputes within the USGP other than those which involve interpretations of by-law, rules or policy and procedure;

2) when necessary, make use of professionals in the field of Dispute Resolution and require professional credential for the dispute resolution/ mediation team members;

3) at the request of individual states, resolve interstate conflicts/ disputes;

4) be the final authority for resolution of disputes within the USGP, if so designated by the appropriate referring body;

5) be responsible for resolution of all disputes between states or between individuals from different states, provided that these disputes affect USGP function and policy, if so designated by the appropriate referring body;

6) maintain actual and the appearance of impartiality in all dealings;

7) with the advice and consent of the CC of the USGP, enact a policy and procedure document that reflects the requirements as described above and delineates all processes, procedures and policies for the committee, including processes for selecting outside mediators, dispute resolvers and judges.




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