Sunday, August 10, 2008

July Minutes 2008

Washington County Democrats
July Meeting, 2008

The Washington County Democratic Party met in the Day Lounge at Halcyon House on Tuesday, July 8, 2008. Chairperson Sandra Johnson called the meeting to order at 7:10 pm with twenty-five individuals present.

Events chair, John Greener, reported on the July 4th Parade in Wellman. He said there were lots of people and the Democrats were represented with 5 vehicles and lots of people.

Sheriff Candidate Dave Schweitzer reported that he had 9 walkers in the Wellman parade all in Schweitzer t-shirts. He has post cards, stickers, and signs for yards. He will be at the fair Monday and Wednesday during the day and Tuesday and Thursday evenings.

Candidate Larry Marek reported that he will have a birthday party fund raiser at John Greener’s on July 13th from 4 – 6 pm. He invited everyone to attend. He also said he has been very busy calling knocking on doors, attending parades, and attending coffees.

Terry Philips moved that the June minutes be approved as printed. Ferd Marie seconded. Motion passed.

Kay Ciha gave the treasurer’s report. Available cash is $1824.76. We will need to have a fund raiser to pay the rent and to help our candidates. John Greener moved that we pay Steve Maxon $20.00 for gas. Seconded by Bob Spenner. Motion passed.

Kay Ciha reported that as of July 5th we have 65 paid households. Louise Frakes brought up that some unpaid members are precinct chair-people and this may be in conflict with our constitution. Sandra stepped away from the chair to speak to this issue. She stated that she is opposed to asking them to pay. Bob Spenner agreed. Doris Park suggested inviting them to join and come to a meeting. Kay Ciha replied that they have all been sent a “request for membership” form. Heated discussion followed.

Terry Philips moved that we send them a note saying their membership is being paid by someone else as Sandra offered to pay their membership. Sandra Johnson made a friendly amendment to establish a “scholarship for members’ so people won’t know who paid it. Louise seconded. Terry Philips called the question. Ione Burham questioned if paying for them might offend some and stated that the letter would need to be carefully written. Motion carried with two opposed. Terry Philips was appointed to write the letter, but to get Executive Board approval before sending it.

Sandra Johnson regained the chair and stated that she will call a meeting of the committee who originally drafted that Constitution and By-Laws. The committee would go over those documents again to see if changed need to be made.

It was reported that the Second District has lots of problems and wrong information on its website. Sandra has written to them to clarify this. Secretary Louise Frakes has also sent them updated information about our County party and officers.

Terry Philips reported on the Veterans Caucus. He said they have elected new officers. The Regional Conference is being postponed. The next meeting of the Veterans Caucus will be July 12 in North Liberty.

The Candidate Recruitment/Development Committee reported and asked Sandra Johnson to introduce Merle Hagie as a possible District 4 supervisor candidate. Merle spoke to the group. He said he is currently on the Washington City Council and various committees. He was one of the first to work for the establishment of five supervisors. He ended by saying, “Choose the candidate that you think is the most electable and will do the best job.”

Terry Philips asked for an explanation of how that position would be filled. Sandra read from the State code that the candidate would be selected by delegates fo that district to the County Convention. There were 13 delegates from District 4 so a special session of the County Convention involving those delegates would be held. That convention would need to be held between August 4 and August 27. The candidate’s name along with a petition of 30 signatures would have to be filed in the Auditor’s office by August 27th.

Jay Santana suggested holding the “mini-Convention at the Democratic office. Terry Philips moved to hold it Saturday, August 9th at 10:00 am at the Democratic office. Jay Santana seconded. Motion carried with 4 opposed.

Terry moved that if it appears that the convention will not meet quorum, the Executive Board may propose another date. Jay Santana seconded. Motion passed. Secretary Louise Frakes will call delegates and alternates from District 4 to determine if there would be a quorum. Jay Santana volunteered to help with the calling if needed.

Guest Faith Bromwich, from the Iowa City area, asked to speak to the group. She is a National Delegate and thanked the group for her support. She also spoke about the “Economics and Human Rights for All People” Caucus. She asked for donations to help her get to Denver to the Convention.

Jay Santana reported that only three Washington County delegates had attended the State Convention. This was a very disappointing number.

The County Fair Booth (July 13 – 18) was discussed. Jay Santana sent around a sign up sheet for workers. Sandra appointed Mike Roe, Bob Spenner, Terry Philips, and herself to set the booth up on Sunday, July 13, at 4:00 pm. She said they would welcome others to help them.

Sandra read a letter for Senator Barack Obama about5 the Democratic Platform asking for input from all. Those suggestions then will be sent to a national committee to weld them into the National Platform. Our county will meet July 26 at 2:00 at the Democratic Headquarters to work on this project.

Jay Santana reported on the availability of t-shirts and polo shirts with our new logo. Members were encouraged to purchase and wear these shirts.

Jay Santana reported on our Flood Relief project. He said two trips had already been made to deliver donations and the rest of the things would be taken there soon. Other members reported on other groups that were also making contributions to help with Flood Relief efforts.

Upcoming events include the County Fair, the Ice Cream Social at Frakes, the National Convention, the Regional Veterans Conference, July 12 Candidate Training, fall wiener roast at Ferd Marie’s, and a fund raiser dinner for the County Party.

Louise Frakes brought up the possibility of setting up a Washington County website. There was much discussion, especially about the cost. Dave Schweitzer said that we might be able to set up a website for $69 for 6 months through 1 and Jay Santana volunteered to look into this and report back at the next meeting. The group gave approval to go ahead with the website if the cost seemed reasonable.

Chairman Sandra Johnson thanked the Executive Board for the flowers they sent for her mother’s funeral and thanked the group for the many cards she has received.

The next meeting will be August 12th at 7:00 pm at the Day Lounge at Halcyon House. Meeting adjourned at 8:45 pm.