May 3, 2014

Approved Minutes from the Saturday, May 3rd, 2014 Annual Meeting of the Green Party of CT.

Attendees who are GPCT members:  Fairfield: Rolf Maurer, Hector Lopez, David Bedell, and Lawrence Platt.   Greater Hartford: Barbara Barry,           S. Michael DeRosa, Katherine Dalamagas, Photios Dalamagas, Derek Haspeslagh.    Greater Norwich:  Jim Stuhler.  New London: Ronna Stuller, Waterford: Baird Welch-Collins, Bill Collins, Margaret Welch.  Also: Douglas Lary, Jeffry Larson, Jeff Russell, Brian Austin, Steve Kass, Cheryl Curtiss, Tim McKee, Arlen Lam.  And an observer from Portland, CT.

11am to noon: Socialization and setting up of chairs and banners around the room. Set up tables for: free literature, merchandise and items for GPCT fundraising. Potluck food and beverages to kitchen.   Distribution to attendees of question cards for the two speakers.  

Facilitator from noon to 2:30pm:  S. Michael DeRosa, a GPCT co-chairperson and Barbara Barry, GPCT secretary. 

Noon to 12:15pm: attendees introduced themselves to the other people in the room.

2:15pm to 12:40pm: SMD gave Executive Committee ( EC) report about activities done over the past year and which activities are on-going.  (e.g.  CT Senate Bill: 237.) 

12:40pm to 12:50pm: BAB:  Unanimous consensus voteto: a) have GPCT form an alliance with the Green Parties of: MA, RI, NY and NJ in efforts to STOP the proposed Algonquin Pipeline expansionAnd Unanimous consensus vote for b) GPCT authorization for David Bedell to enter into the GPUS website information about GPCT candidates and/or office holders.

 12:50 pm to 1:10pm:  a) the attending internal candidates for the EC and for the three (3) GPCT positions to the GPUS made statements to attendees and answered questions.   GPCT EC candidates  included: three for co-chairpersons. Two were present: SMD and RM. Linda Thompson was absent due to illness.  Lone candidate for treasurer, Christopher Reilly was absent due to spousal hospitalization and lone candidate for secretary, BAB, spoke.  The attending candidates answered questions from the attendees.  b) BAB urged attendees to review theattachments regarding GPUS recent activities and the list of GPUS National Committees.  BAB further urged GPCT members to consider any of these positions. GPCT is allocated 3 positions on each of the National Committees. Elections will be held for those positions at the first State Central Committee (SCC) of GPCT after today’s annual meeting. ( SCC date/time and site: to be determined by the EC members who are elected today.)

1:10pm to 1:25pm: The collection of any ballots from the attendees by the Internal Elections Committee members,  Jeffry Larson and Doug Lary. They started counting the mailed-in ballots and the valid ballots from the 5-3-14 meeting attendees. (Christopher Reilly was absent.  SMD obtained the unopened mailed ballots on the evening of 5/2/14 from CR,  who obtained them from the GPCT post office box earlier on the day of 5/2/14.)

1:25pm to 2:25pm: Ed Heflin, PhD and MBA, academic educator in the US, EU and Asia and investment banking consultant of Cos Cob, CT spoke regarding how CT could benefit from the formation of a CT State Public Bank.  The oldest state bank in the U.S. is the Bank of North Dakota which was established in 1918. It is a prototype and has functioned through financial fluctuations inclusive of the Great Depression.  Typically under our current system,  federal taxes, fees and other monies are spent within and outside the U.S.  Therefore, CT will get back from the federal government limited amounts of money.  If however, a CT State Public Bank is established, all the state taxes, fees, sales tax and other monies could be used within the state (minus any monies for the administration of the CT government).  Thus keeping CT money in CT for whatever it chooses e.g. improve infrastructure, increase green activities and businesses, expand credit to businesses, job development, improve standard of living, energy sources and continue social works. Goals for a CT state public bank would need to be authorized by the CT legislature and with oversight by a Board of Directors (typically would include the governor, CT banking and CT insurance officials, industry CEOs and consumer advocates.  NOTE: other parts of the world use postal banks(in Japan, Germany and Spain) which are controlled by their governments i.e. they are not  commercial banks as they are here in North America.  Wall Street has no reason to return money to CT because it is in the business of making money for itself and some for shareholders. Currently: RI and VT are considering state public banks.

2:25pm to 2:40pm: potluck lunch and  beverages; fundraising for the GPCT (to support our website and for GPCT candidates).

Facilitator from 2:40pm to 5pm: Ronna Stuller of the New London Chapter of the GPCT. 

2:40pm to 4:28pm: speech by Jonathan Pelto, former CT state representative from Mansfield (in the mid 1980’s), former CT Democratic Chairperson and Democratic political consultant.    He addressed his concerns about the federally mandated school Core Curriculum. He and others consider it “education deform” which he has indicated promotes the privatization of public education, promotion of corporations and corporate agendas. Charter schools which are managed by private corporations use public taxpayer money.  Some charters are not corporations but private entities i.e. do not have shareholders who typically would be interested in the management and regulations of the entity. There are concerns about limiting the actions of educator unions. Professional groups are concerned about generic teaching may not expose talented public school students with interests in specific subject which would be needed by society and for the economic well being of the U.S.A.  Other concerns are that with the loss of students to charter schools, the public school educators may be hindered in their ability to individually educate the remaining public students. E.g. it is federally mandated that public schools only teach English as a second language for two years.  Then states stop teaching English to these students whether it is in the 2nd grade or any grade.  This would hinder the ability of a public school student to learn…any subject. And would likely hinder the student’s ability to successfully acquire a high school diploma…and or be all they could be society.

4:28pm to 4:35pm:  David Bedell spoke regarding the CT SEEC (State Elections Enforcement Commission) response to GPCT complaint about the lack of counting of  the 2012 GPCT presidential candidate (Jill Stein, MD) write-in votes in a random sampling of the voting districts in the 169 towns in CT of: Hartford, Bridgeport, New Canaan, Seymour, Stamford and West Haven. Hartford discovered a total of 33 write-in votes from all Hartford districts. Complaints only came from two of the multiple Bridgeport districts so Bridgeport only checked these two districts. A total of 3 write-in votes were found in these two districts.  As of this time, the SEEC had not advised if they will fine either or both of these towns.

4:35pm to 4:55pm: attendees suggested the following subjects for future focus of the GPCT: reformtheCommon Corefederal regulations;ballot access reform;  local self sufficiency, campaign finance reform, divestiture of polluting major corporations, divestiture from big commercial banks; support for a CT public state bank, student debt relief, opposition to pet guardianship, support financial equality e.g. minimum wage, living wage, and fair taxation; Algonquin Pipeline action; judicial reform, and supporting GPCT campaigns.

4:55pm: the Internal Elections Committee presented the results of the internal election from mailed-in ballots and valid ballots distributed to today’s attendees who are GPCT members: co-chairpersons: S. Michael DeRosa, Rolf Maurer and Linda Thompson; Christopher Reilly for treasure and Barbara Barry for secretary. Tim McKee and S. Michael DeRosa were elected to represent the GPCT to the GPUS.  The third position to the GPUS was a five (5) way tie:  Baird Welch Collins, Linda Thompson, Jean deSmet, Jose Cartaro and David Bedell.  DB stated he declined the position so now it is a 4 way tie.  The GPCT needs to determine i.e. elect the person for this 3rd at the next SCC meeting.

 4:58pm: cleaned up the facility and exited the building.

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