CT Green Party
State Central Committee Meeting
February 25, 2003
Minutes of February 25, 2003 SCC meeting, Fisk Hall, Wesleyan University
1. Attendees: (V=voting rep, NV=non-voting) (17 attendees)
(i) Central Connecticut chapter: Vincent Maruffi(V), Tim McKee(NV)
(ii) Tolland chapter: Michael Burns(V)
(iii) Western Connecticut chapter: Justine McCabe, Andy Ziegler
(iv) Northeast chapter: Amy Vas Nunes(V)
(v) Hartford chapter: Mike DeRosa(V), Barbara Barry DeRosa(V), Chris Reilly(V), Ed DuBrule(NV)
(vi) Southeast chapter: Penny Teal(V)
(vii) Northwest chapter: Judy Herkimer(V), Tom Sevigny(V),Kim Herkimer(V)
(viii) New Haven chapter: Bruce Crowder
The bylaws state that "Attendance by at least one representative of three quarters or more of all Chapters shall be required for formal consideration of any significant motion or proposal ...." The meeting began at 7pm, but it was not until about 7:30pm that representatives of 8 chapters arrived (there was mention of an auto accident and traffic delays). The time until representatives of 8 chapters arrived was spent on chapter reports and announcements (many summarized in the minutes below). It was stated by one meeting attendee that a quorum consisted of representatives of 8 chapters (2/3 of 12 chapters), and this figure was accepted as accurate by attendees. [Note from the Secretary: as I write these minutes, I calculate that representatives of 9 chapters must be present for a quorum to exist--3/4 of 12 chapters is 9. These minutes will report that the SCC came to certain decisions; however a re-consideration of these decisions may be necessary because representatives of only 8 chapters were present.]
Tim McKee facilitated. Timekeeper was Tom Sevigny. A stick-keeper/stacker was selected but it was found unnecessary to pass a talking stick. (With the "talking stick" rule, only the person in possession of the stick is allowed to speak; the "stacker" function is to keep track of who has requested to speak next.)
2. Adoption of Ground Rules. The Ground Rules worked out at meetings in November 2002 were adopted for use at this meeting by consensus.
3. Approve outline of agenda. By consensus, the outline was approved, with 5 minutes allocated for each topic on the agenda.
4. Comments on minutes of January 2003 SCC meeting. The minutes of the January meeting were distributed. There were no comments, additions, or corrections by any of the attendees.
5. Treasurer's report. The treasurer was in attendance, but he has not yet received the Party's checkbook and other records from the former treasurer.
6. Review and approve old business agenda items. There was no objection raised to discussing all the items listed in the proposed agenda under "old business", in the order listed.
7. Old business
(a) Proposal for media coordinator(s) position(s). Michael Burns distributed copies of his proposal. After discussion, this proposal was accepted by consensus, with two wording changes from the proposal as originally distributed. The proposal as accepted by consensus follows (the wording changes are indicated in CAPITALS). "I propose that the Connecticut State Central Committee establish the position of TWO Media Coordinators. This type of position would be extremely useful in a variety of ways including: sending out and sometimes drafting press releases on a regular basis, helping with media for state-wide Green Party events, and sharing ideas with chapters that can help them better get the word out on Green Party events and happenings. I propose that state-wide press releases be sent out in one model other large organizations use: the text of the press releases being approved by A MAJORITY OF the elected Steering Committee before release."
It was agreed by consensus that this proposal would be taken back to the chapters for comment. Chapters should indicate persons who are interested in being one of the two Media Coordinators. There should be a vote at the March SCC meeting who these two Media Coordinators will be.
During the discussion, it was pointed out that the two Media Coordinators could be assisted by other persons; perhaps each chapter could designate contact person(s) for media issues. The idea that a media committee should be formed was brought up but not brought to a vote. The media coordinators could arrange for the issuance of timely press releases; they could see that a Connecticut "spin" was put on national Green Party press releases. The following persons indicated an interest in media work: Michael Burns, Justine McCabe, Penny Teal, Tim McKee.
(b) state budget cuts/layoffs. It was stated that Steve Krevisky had proposed that this item be put on the agenda (it had been deferred at the January state meeting). It was decided by consensus that this agenda item be deferred to the March SCC meeting as old business. There was concern that there was no specific proposal for specific action(s) by the SCC. Amy Vas Nunes pointed out that the Connecticut Green Party is a part of One Connecticut.
(c) Enlarging our state platform/legislative agenda. Michael Burns pointed out that the Connecticut Green Party website (www.ctgreens.org) has only a small amount of information in its "platform" section--this section could be expanded if the SCC approved some items for inclusion on the website each month. Michael Burns distributed a two-page handout which contains suggested platform material on reform of drug-policy laws. This handout was prepared after consulting with Cliff Thornton, director of the group Efficacy.
It was decided by consensus that this drug-policy handout should be taken to the chapters and that the SCC should vote in March as to whether this handout should be added to the website as part of the Connecticut Green Party platform.
[Note from the Secretary: I will forward to my list of chapter contacts, and to the listserve, an e-mail which contains this handout. I cannot attach this handout to the e-mail containing these minutes for technical reasons (lack of computer skills).]
It was pointed out that the platform statements of Connecticut Green Party candidates who ran for public office in November 2002 would be suitable material for the platform section of the website. [Secretary's note: whether these platform statements could be put onto the website without SCC approval was not addressed at this meeting.]
(d) Formation of outreach committee. Michael Burns proposed the formation of an outreach committee, saying that there are many organizations working in Connecticut on progressive issues and we need to work more closely with them.
It was pointed out that the Connecticut Green Party website (www.ctgreens.org) contains a relatively short list of organizations that the Connecticut Green Party "is working with (or we have worked with very recently)" [Secretary's note: on the www.ctgreens.org homepage, in the upper left hand corner click on "links"; on the next page click on "Coalition Partners". This brings up the list of website links, which consists of Todo Connecticut con Vieques, Love Makes a Family, One Connecticut/Connecticut Voices for Children, Connecticut Peace Coalition/Connecticut American Friends Service Committee, CAN (Citizens' Awareness Network), New England War Resisters' League, V.O.T.E.R. (see later in these minutes), and P.O.W.E.R (see later in these minutes). If you click on "Progressive Organizations in Connecticut" instead of "Coalition Partners", a long list of website links to progressive organizations can be seen.]
It was pointed out that in the past organizations such as Love Makes a Family have sent a representative to the SCC and the SCC has stated that we agree with their legislative agenda.
Some suggestions were made as to ways in which we could work more closely with progressive organizations, such as publicizing their events and writing joint press releases. A committee could be formed to develop a list of contact persons within these organizations and perform similar functions.
8. Brief announcements: see section at end of these minutes titled "Events and Projects".
9. Review and approve new business agenda items. There was no objection raised to considering the new business items in the order listed on the proposed agenda. 10. New business.
(a) Chapter reports. See section "Events and Projects" below.
(b) Committee reports. V.O.T.E.R and P.O.W.E.R.--see section "Events and Projects" below. Ed DuBrule reported that the Internal Elections committee has not met since the Feb. 8 internal elections; the one piece of unresolved business is that Chris Reilly (who picks up Connecticut Green Party mail, including the internal elections ballots) is owed money for post office fees that he paid out of his own pocket. (The post office fees have been called "fines" because our addresses were faulty or not checked against a post office compact disk of addresses; another explanation has been that we requested "address service" from the post office.) These fees have come to $375 so far. The internal election committee has not considered the matter of when the next internal elections will be held. It was stated that the bylaws specify elections in one year or less. It was felt by SCC members that the chapters should be asked for input on this question. [Secretary's note: the bylaws say: "In the initial organization of the Party ... the co-Chairpersons ... shall hold office for one year or until the following State Party convention, whichever occurs first. ... Other offices shall be filled .... All offices shall be for a term of one year from the time of election or appointment"]
(c) US Green Party representatives' report. Tom Sevigny reported. A merchandising committee has been formed, to sell mugs, T-shirts, etc. Elizabeth Horton Sheff spoke at the February anti-war rally. The national meeting will be in July (no exact date yet). The Green Party presidential convention will probably be in Minneapolis, possibly in July or September.
Adjournment. As the time was now 9:00pm, a vote was held regarding adjournment. It was decided to adjourn (adjourn--8 votes, don't adjourn--3 votes).
Next meeting: not discussed. (SCC meetings are normally held the last Tuesday of the month.)
A. V.O.T.E.R. Voter Opportunity Through Election Reforms--a coalition concerned with election reform issues (such as signature collection laws). Met with Connecticut legislators. Contacts: Mike DeRosa, Tim McKee.
B. P.O.W.E.R. People Opposed to Wasteful Energy Rip-offs--a coalition concerned with electricity "restructuring", rate increases in Connecticut, Green power, etc. Contact: Mike DeRosa.
C. PCB (polychlorinated biphenyls) Congress and vigil. Congress March 26-7 (Wed-Thurs), Fairfield University. See link on www.ctgreens.org for detailed information (home page, left side of page). Vigil March 26 at General Electric Corp. Contact person: Judy Herkimer.
D. Hartford chapter tag sale. Sat. March 29. To donate items: Mike DeRosa.
E. Southeast chapter activities. working against Patriot Act, working on anti-war resolutions before town governments. Contact: Penny Teal.
F. Northeast chapter anti-war activities: ongoing large peace vigils, March 15 Boston Iraq demo, upcoming White House demo, anti-war resolutions before town governments. Contact person: Amy Vas Nunes.
G. Northwest chapter activities (see also "C" above): forums at Litchfield Public Library on sprawl, instant runoff voting, drug policy, single payor, utility deregulation. Contacts: Judy Herkimer, Tom Sevigny.
H. Tolland chapter. Stop Vernon Wal-mart. Weekly public access TV shows (tapes available for your chapter to broadcast). Contact: Michael Burns.
I. Central Connecticut chapter. Opposing new power plant planned for Middletown. Contact: Vincent Maruffi.
J. Western Connecticut chapter. Anti-war resolution(s) before town government(s). Bus from Danbury to DC March 29. Contact: Justine McCabe.
H. New Haven chapter. Recent large rally (500 people) against the war. Supporting Yale unions in strike action. Contact: Bruce Crowder.
I. Sat. March 22 Connecticut Toxics Action Center Conference, Wesleyan. Cosponsored by Northwest chapter, New Haven chapter, and Central Connecticut chapter. Contact: Tom Sevigny.
The proposed agenda for the meeting was:
1. Introductions/identify chapter reps; recruit stacker and time-keeper (5 minutes);
2. Adopt groundrules (5 minutes)
3. Approve outline of agenda
4. Secretary passes out copies of January meeting's minutes, asks for comments/approval
5. Treasurer's report
6. Review and approve old business agenda items
7. Old business
(a) proposal for media coordinator(s) position(s) (Michael Burns) (deferred to Feb. meeting)
(b) state budget cuts/layoffs (deferred to Feb. meeting)
(c) enlarging our state platform/legislative agenda (Michael Burns)(originally agenda item for Jan mtg)
(d) formation of outreach committee (Michael Burns) (originally agenda item for January meeting)
8. Brief announcements
9. Review and approve new business agenda items
10. New business (written here in order I received these items, except Iraq last)
(a) chapter reports
(b) committee reports (all committees, regardless of whether they've met)
(c) US Green Party representatives' report
(d) bylaws change proposal (New Haven chapter and/or Southeast chapter/Penny Teal)
(e) testimony-giver at state Capitol 2/26/03--CTGP endorse impact fees (John Battista)
(f) reauthorize Amy Vas Nunes to national Platform Committee (Amy Vas Nunes)
(g) Executive Committee meetings (when? open? minutes?) (Amy Vas Nunes)
(h) Iraq (discuss? form committee to deal with?)
Adjourn promptly at 9pm. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------