Petition 90034

Petition 90034 amending Paragraph 401.5:

Petition 90034 (ADCA at 183), Calendar Item 16 (DCA 384) – Amends ¶ 410.5 of the Discipline to provide a process by which the Council of Bishops may place any bishop in an involuntary leave status. In Decision 1366, the Judicial Council held this petition unconstitutional because members of the council relations committee and administrative review committee participated in both the prosecutorial and adjudicative functions. The Legislative Committee addressed this concern by amending the petition to provide that members of the council relations committee and the administrative review committee shall not vote on the decision made by the Council of Bishops. In Decision 1366, the Judicial Council also held this petition unconstitutional because the lack of a provision granting a right of appeal from the action of the Council of Bishops. The Legislative Committee was precluded from addressing an amendment that would have been proposed to grant such a right of appeal. In Decision 1377, the Judicial Council held that the amendment by the Legislative Committee cured the first infirmity, but that the lack of appeal still existed.  Parliamentary maneuvering during the February 26 plenary session prevented the proposed amendment to provide for an appeal from being made. Thus, petition 90034 most likely will be held unconstitutional because of the lack of a right of appeal being provided.

Paragraph 410.5 as adopted by the Legislative Committee and by the plenary session is as follows:

¶ 410.5 Involuntary Leave of Absence—a) By a majority vote of those present and voting, the members of the Council of Bishops may place any bishop in an involuntary leave status if such a relation is recommended by the council relations committee. The procedures for fair process in administrative hearings shall be followed in any involuntary leave of absence procedure (¶ 422.5). Written notice also should be given to the chairperson of the administrative review committee (¶ 422.6).

  1. b) Involuntary leave of absence shall be approved annually by the Council of Bishops after review and recommendation of the council relations committee. Members of the council relations committee and administrative review committee shall not vote on this matter.
  2. c) During the period for which the leave is granted, the bishop shall be released from all episcopal responsibilities, and another bishop chosen by the College of Bishops shall preside in the episcopal area. Salary and other benefits may be continued through the Episcopal Fund for a maximum of six months.