December 13, 2023
Frits E. Lawaetz Legislative Conference Room
The jurisdiction of the Committee of the Whole encompasses, and the Committee shall:
(a) The Legislature, at any time during any of its legislative sessions upon motion by a member, or by order of the President, may resolve itself into a Committee of the Whole for the taking of testimony and discussing any subject it may consider proper, whether previously formally introduced or not. The President may call a Committee of the Whole at times other than during a legislative session to permit more free and informal discussion of any matter pending before the Legislature, including zoning applications, coastal zone permit applications, certain government contracts, and GovernorÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s proposals.
(b) A motion to constitute the Legislature into a Committee of the Whole must, if an objection is raised, be voted on without debate.
(c) A Committee of the Whole has all the powers granted any standing committee with respect to the issuance of subpoenas and investigations connected therewith and such other powers as it may require consistent with laws of the Virgin Islands and the provisions of these Rules. However, the Committee of the Whole may not amend, lay on the table, or otherwise alter or affect the disposition of any bill, resolution, permit, lease, rezoning application, contract or other matter that it considers. A Committee of the Whole may restrict the subject matter to be considered by resolving itself into a Committee of the Whole for a specific and limited purpose.
(d) In addition to the limitations in subsection (c), a Committee of the Whole:
(1) may not entertain a question of priority.
(2) may not entertain a question of legislative of personal privilege.
(3) may not postpone the consideration of any question.
(4) may not reconsider a vote on a proposal no longer in possession of the Committee of the Whole.
(5) has no authority to appoint a subcommittee.
(6) may not punish members for disorderly conduct but must report any misconduct to the full body for its action.
(7) is dissolved by the absence of a quorum, and may not proceed with any matter, including taking testimony, until a quorum is obtained.
(e) A Committee of the Whole shall rise:
(1) on the order of the President; or
(2) on motion of any member duly seconded and, if objection is raised, carried by majority vote.
(f) The provisions of Rules 309 requiring public announcements of meetings and Rule 310 regarding reservation of meeting times do not apply to meetings of the Committee of the Whole, except Rule 309 applies to a Committee of the Whole meeting held outside of a session.