CT Green Party
State Central Committee Meeting
January 28, 2003
Charlie Pillsbury (New Haven chapter--NOT voting rep);
Vincent Maruffi (New Haven chapter);
Peter Ellner (New Haven chapter);
David Eliscu (New Haven chapter);
Amy Vas Nunes (Northeast chapter);
Mike DeRosa (Hartford chapter);
Barbara Barry DeRosa (Hartford chapter);
Vic Lancia (Central Connecticut chapter);
Michael Burns (Tolland chapter);
Penny Teal (Southeast chapter);
Ed DuBrule (Hartford chapter--NOT voting rep);
Chris Reilly (Hartford chapter);
Tom Sevigny (Northwest chapter);
Kim Herkimer (Northwest chapter);
Judy Herkimer (Northwest chapter);
Gerry Martin (Central Connecticut chapter--NOT voting rep);
Chris Nelson (New London chapter);
Ralph Ferrucci (New Haven chapter);
Jeff Schaefer (North Central chapter);
Tim McKee (Central Connecticut chapter);
Steve Krevisky (Central Connecticut chapter);
John Battista (Western Connecticut chapter);
Justine McCabe (Western Connecticut chapter);
Lynah (Hartford chapter; part of meeting);
Susan Oehl (Central Connecticut chapter);
David Oehl (Central Connecticut chapter)
Early in the meeting those present who were NOT voting representatives from a chapter were asked to so identify themselves. People who entered the room after that were not given that opportunity.
1. Stacker and timekeeper. David Eliscu served as timekeeper (announcing when time limits on agenda items were over); Gerry Martin served as stick-keeper/stacker (a talking stick was used--only the person in possession of the stick could speak) (a "stacker" keeps track of who wishes to speak and passes them the talking stick when they are to speak).
2. Facilitator. Charlie Pillsbury served as facilitator.
3. Treasurer's report. A report was distributed to each attendee by Chris Nelson showing chapter balances; income, expenditures, and balance in the Connecticut Green Party checking account over the past thirteen months; and recent expenditures.
Positive chapter balances range from a low of $14 (I omit cents) (North Central chapter) to a high of $1,681 (Northwest chapter). Only one chapter has a negative balance: -$1,672 (Hartford chapter).
Over the past 13 months (January 2002 through January 2003 through January 28), the income of the Connecticut Green Party has ranged from a low of $251 (January 2003) to a high of $2,838 (August 2002). Expenditures of the Party have ranged from $125 (June 2002) to $4,913 (May 2002). The checking account balance has ranged from a low of $465 (July 2002) to a high of $5740 (January 2002). The balance as of January 28, 2003 is $2395--it was pointed out that this is far lower than the January 2002 balance of $5740.
Recent expenditures have included printing for the internal election ($1644) and postage for the internal election ($670); and expenses associated with the Hartford office ($400 rent for January, $400 rent for February, $103 phone for December and January, $90 electricity for December and January).
4. Decision on old business agenda items. We voted to hear the report of the internal elections committee before dealing with the issue of compensation for the outside facilitators (first vote: IEC report first 5, compensation first 5, abstain 5; second vote 6,5,5).
5(a). Internal elections.
(i) Post office fines. Chris Reilly (who is not on the internal elections committee but who has been collecting the ballots from the post office) reported that post office(s) have levied fines of $180 (so far) on our mailing. [A later e-mail from Chris (2/6/03) to internal election committee members informed us that in order to qualify for the postage discount all of the names/addresses in our mailing should have been CASS (Coding Accuracy Support System) certified within the past 6 months. CASS certified means that the names and addresses have been compared to the post office's national database of names/addresses and that any names/addresses not found on the database are eliminated from the mailing. There's a penalty of somewhere between 50 and 70 cents for each undeliverable piece of mail from the mailing. To date our penalties have come to over $300.] Chris showed a large number of mailed-out ballots which had bad addresses.
(ii) People to tally ballots. The internal elections committee had spoken in terms of asking for volunteers at the Annual Meeting to help tally ballots. It was pointed out that during the period since the last Annual Meeting the SCC had decided that one person per chapter should form a vote-counting committee.
(iii) Sending out CD's with voters' names. The internal elections committee had originally decided to send out to each internal elections candidate (co-chair, secretary, treasurer, and USGP representative) a copy of the compact disk containing the list-of-people-eligible-to-vote in the internal elections. This decision was made in response to a request by candidate(s) for these names. Before this decision was implemented (before these CD's were mailed out) several Connecticut Greens objected to this decision, citing privacy concerns of the individuals on this list. It was also realized (after the original decision had been made) that the CD contained lists other than the list-of-people-eligible-to-vote; it had the twelve chapters' entire lists, for example, from which the list-of-people-eligible was prepared. Some Connecticut Greens also objected to the committee's decision on the ground that such a decision should have been made at the SCC level, not the committee level.
The internal elections committee re-considered (in a difficult three-hour meeting devoted exclusively to this decision) and decided not to send out the original CD's, but to send out CD's containing only the list of registered Greens (people who had registered in their towns as Greens rather than as Democrats or as Republicans). It was felt that such a list was a matter of public record (at least the names and street addresses). These CD's were mailed to each of the internal elections candidates. [Note from the secretary: the list sent out does not include registered voters from several Connecticut towns.] At tonight's SCC meeting, it was again questioned whether such a decision should have been made at the committee level. Also at tonight's SCC meeting it was questioned whether even publicly-available information should have been sent out. The apparent reasoning behind the latter comment was that, according to our bylaws, anyone can become a candidate for an internal elections seat, even a person with no track record for integrity or good judgement within the Party.
The internal elections committee had also voted to ask the SCC for a decision on the following question: "For the February 2003 elections only, should candidates be sent the list-of-persons-sent-ballots, with phone numbers (if phone numbers are contained on the CD)?" The SCC voted that the committee should NOT send out this list-of-persons-sent-ballots (don't send--11, send--5, abstain--4).
5(b). Compensation for facilitators. Liz Binger and Peter Love, the conflict resolution consultants who facilitated the 11/16/02 "conflict resolution" meeting, the first segment of the 11/26/02 meeting, and the "business" segment of the 11/26/02 meeting, are owed $1500. Concern has been expressed that this expenditure was incurred without SCC authorization. The Northeast chapter voted that their representative to the SCC should vote that the bill should not be paid from Connecticut Green Party funds for this reason. Charlie Pillsbury, Tom Sevigny, and Justine McCabe explained the background to the hiring of the facilitators. In order that no facts be mis-stated, I refer readers of these minutes to these persons for details, but it appears, for example, that one individual had guaranteed payment from his own pocket of one-third the facilitators' bill if the SCC did not ultimately authorize payment. Attendee(s) at tonight's meeting questioned what the public perception of the Connecticut Green Party might be if it was learned that this bill was incurred but not paid. The SCC voted that the Connecticut Green Party SHOULD pay the $1500 bill (yes pay it--18, don't pay it--1, abstain--0).
5(c). Time, place, and facilitator for February SCC meeting. The February SCC meeting will be held, as usual, at 7pm the last Tuesday of the month (Feb. 25). Vic Lancia said that we could probably get a room in Fisk Hall (Wesleyan University) again--he will check to be sure. The question of a facilitator was discussed; it was finally realized that the bylaws state that "Party Co-Chairpersons ... shall conduct or appoint a facilitator for State Central Committee and Executive Committee meetings".
6. New business. A voting procedure was used to decide which items of new business the SCC would consider.
(a) Proposed New England Greens Gathering. This gathering may occur in April in New Hampshire or Vermont. Penny Teal is already working on this. By overwhelming "yes" vote, the SCC voted that the Connecticut Green Party would participate in this.
(b) Reform of Connecticut's election laws. Mike DeRosa and Tim McKee are working in an organization called VOTER (Voter Opportunity Through Election Reform) in coalition with other political part(ies) such as the Libertarian Party to reform election laws (such as the laws requiring signature collections). The SCC voted to authorize the continuance of this work as representatives of the Connecticut Green Party (yes--14, no--0, abstain--0).
(c) Iraq war. This item had been put on the proposed agenda by the Northeast chapter, by Steve Krevisky, and by Tom Sevigny. The SCC voted to authorize any Connecticut Green going to the Sunday, Feb. 2 meeting of the Connecticut Peace Coalition (held at Wesleyan) to say that they represent the Connecticut Green Party (so authorize--12, don't authorize--0, abstain--1).
(d) Proposal to form media coordinator(s) position(s). This item was put on the proposed agenda by Michael Burns. "I propose that the Connecticut State Central Committee establish the position of Media Coordinator. 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 using one model other large organizations use: the text of the press releases being approved by the elected Steering Committee before release."
It was suggested that this proposal should be taken to the chapters for discussion and voting. Because the 9pm adjournment time of the meeting was fast approaching, it was decided that this agenda item will be the first "old business" item on the agenda for the February 25 SCC meeting.
(e) State budget cuts/layoffs. This item was put on the proposed agenda by the Northeast chapter and by Steve Krevisky. Because the 9pm adjournment time was fast approaching, it was decided that this agenda item will be the second "old business" item on the agenda for the February 25 SCC meeting.
(f) "No time" items. Items that were not able (for reasons of time) to be addressed were:
(i) Enlarging our state platform (proposal by Michael Burns)
(ii) Proposal to form outreach committee (proposal by Michael Burns) (this proposal was actually not considered in the voting procedure, since Michael withdrew it from consideration, since he had three items up for consideration).
(iii) Chapter reports
(iv) Firing of Amy Pagnozzi by Hartford Courant (perhaps Connecticut Green Party should sign onto a letter protesting this)
The meeting was adjourned at 9pm.