January 30, 2003

SC teleconference Minutes – January 30, 2003 (Draft)

Participants: Anita Rios, Dean Myerson (minutes), Ben Manski, Jake Schneider, Jo Chamberlain (facilitator), Jack Uhrich, Nathalie Paravicini, Barb Payne, Badili Jones, John Rensenbrink (at 9pm), Elizabeth Shanklin (9pm), Morgen D’Arc

Abbreviations used:
AC = Accreditation Committee
BRPP = Bylaws, Rules, Policies and Procedures Committee
BC = Black Caucus
CC = Coordinating Committee
CCC = Coordinated Campaign Committee
CG SC = Campus Greens Steering Committee
DC = Diversity Committee
FC = Fundraising Committee
FEC = Federal Election Commission
GP = Green Party
IC = International Committee
ICA = Institute for Cultural Affairs
LG = Lavender Greens
PPO = Preferred Provider Organization
SC = Steering Committee
[Brackets denote editor’s suggested corrections. Some punctuation corrections done with no content change. -ed.]

Jo > Any concerns regarding Jo’s posted for Jan 16 meeting. Approved

Jo > Tight agenda for this early call.

Jake > Report sent yesterday. Asked Letitia this morning [asking] what she got for Wed and Thur. I never received the email. As to reserve, there is more than what is required for the reserve. Reason is that credit card charges are still going into that (Sovereign) account. Either we continue as we go, or we have Letitia change the system so these deposits go into regular (SunTrust) account. The latter would be my recommendation.
Ben > Agree with Jake. Let’s consense on it.
Jo > Agrees. Any concerns? None
Jake > Going to change login/password for Sovereign acct. Users are Jo, Jake, Doug, Dean.
Ben > No objection in the short term, but when we do the policy in the long run, staff shouldn’t have access to larger account.
Jo > Any concerns? None.
Jake > Need to do another FEC stmt 1 acct because we have a new account. Doug is listed as the custodian of account. Why is that?
Dean > Doug is/was the asst treasurer.
Jo > We’re not understanding. What are these roles?
Jake > Issue is that Doug is listed as custodian of records, rather than Nathalie as Secretary.
Jack > Might be that way because Doug updates financial records on the webpage.
Jo > Maybe we need to discuss this with Nathalie when we have more time.
Nathalie > Jake, [you] seem to have a series of questions. If you put them on email, we can think about them.

Jack > I sent my report and FC minutes. If there are no questions, we can go straight to the merchandising issue. Last night on FC call, we proposed that FC, SC and others have conf call of at least one hour to come up with a direction for merchandising. It deserves some time to decide.
Jo > Dean has item about buttons
Dean > For 2-15 event only, separate.
Ben > Agree.
Jo > Agree? Yes

New Business

Dean > Have been in touch with Kendra, who has also been in touch with Nathalie, who authorized a new acct with Pair Inc, which we did today.

Committee Reports

Nathalie > Spoke with Kendra today. Have to get committee going. Planning to do that this weekend. Have a hard time working during the week because of my job. Have some volunteers and some people coming on board.

Anita > Had conf call with only 2 people, with David Spitzley. Up to 5 people on the committee, but this is the pattern. I schedule calls and people don’t make it. Some issues that we should discuss, but won’t have time for tonight. Some should be exec session. I will send email with all issues that need discussing: leave time policy, switch to PPO plan, payroll tracking. Will put in email to SC.
Nathalie > Sounds great. Take advantage of having only 2 people to put something on the CC that they have a responsibility, tell them of next call. Ask people to volunteer.
Anita > That’s the plan.

Barb > Conf call tomorrow. Still working on things; it’s quite a process.
Jo > How well attended and is work getting done?
Barb > Very well attended ; 8-12 people on calls. 5-6 sub-committees. Listserve is very active. Skeleton of what needs to be improved was just put on the list by Tom. Work is being done and tomorrow we will find out how subcommittees are doing.

Ben > Getting close to consensus on Louisiana’s application. Received an app from Indiana. Response is fairly positive. I am concerned that the CC charged the AC with coming back in 6 months with caucus process proposal, and I don’t think that we are – I have been prodding committee, need to prod harder. Likewise, Lavender Greens approval was for 6 months. AC really needs to get on top of this. I will contact co-chairs about this. Some concern/interest on Labor Greens listserve about forming a caucus and asking for accreditation. Would Labor Greens consisting of union members qualify? I don’t know, people are talking. What does SC think we should do since we are past 6 months deadline?
Anita > Not much we can do right now. Imperative that we get movement on this now. Diversity Comm conf call had call that was difficult. We plan to review this process. Both Ginny and David are waiting for input from DC. If you have a copy of proposal as is, please sent to me.
Ben > Will do.
Nathalie > Put a deadline ; end of Feb ; something is to be voted on.
Anita > I agree. Would give DC time to weigh in.
Jo > Will that work for AC?
Ben > I think so.

Campus Greens
Barb > Very close to starting Joint Committee ; got 2 or 3 more people after last call. Coaching them. Nader ask coming up. Have fresh new SC, getting everything off the ground. A few people have applied for the national director position. I might help them organize their convention in the summer.
Anita > What kind of outreach to chapters to keep them on an even keel so they don’t despair?
Barb > Some, but chapters are relatively unaffected. Caroline’s messages didn’t reach as far as we thought. That’s not the problem, just getting the national back on its feet.
Anita > When I was monitoring listserve, I got a message from a chapter in Florida asking what to do now with the problems.
Barb > I would like to get these emails and deal with them.
Ben > Wanted to let people know that Shelly Fite got hit by a car, hit-and-run driver. She’s okay, but thought you might want to know.
Jo > 2 questions. Is office staying in Chicago?
Barb > For the moment. Talk of advantages of moving to DC, but not now.
Jo > Residual problem with past group regarding legal issues or lobbying against CG?
Barb > Legalities have been dropped on both sides. Some things in records coming up, but not sure yet. Some former CG SC members have talked of starting a new CG. Nobody really taking them seriously.
Nathalie > What about website that listed all the grievances, etc.
Barb > Haven’t asked about this. Will do.

Coordinated Campaign Comm
Ben > Had series of conference calls. Working on criteria for directing resources to campaigns. Finalized a draft. Next big project is organizing regional campaign trainings and implementing the criteria ; matching funds. Will talk about job descriptions for staff in the next call.

Pending/in-progress votes

Budget implementation
Jo > Budget passed, and there are requirements: SC needs to write a proposal for SC stipends, for discretionary funds, for travel, food, personnel (in process), and one other I’m forgetting at the moment. Barb, question for BRPP; have they taken any of these on?
Barb > I don’t think so.
Jo > Who would like the SC stipend proposal?
Anita > I’ll write it.
Jo > Do we want a timeline for this?
Anita > Draft in a week, for the next conf call.
Nathalie > Next conf call is in a week?
Jo > Yes. Need proposal for discretionary funds?
Nathalie > More like how we are going to allocate expenditures. Ask whether Jake would like to do that since it is finance.
Ben > Will talk to Anita regarding stipends proposal. Great if Jake would draft it. It shouldn’t cover the content of what we spend it on, but process ; how SC makes decision to spend discretionary funds.
Jake > I will draft it, and will take any and all emails.
Jo > Policies needed on travel, food. Does anybody work at a company that has policies on these things?
Anita > I have, and they are far more generous than we have ever been.
Jo > Can you forward those to me, and I will work on them.
Anita > I don’t have those policies now. If I can’t find them, I will send you my best memories on them.
Nathalie > I would like to suggest two things. Set general limits. It’s up to committees to decide. Different committees have different needs.
Ben > Badili, does UNITE have a policy?
Badili > I haven’t seen anything in writing. May see something eventually.
Dean > Basic protections to prevent excessive expenditure. Maybe also need some consideration, for example, of whether committee members travel can be paid to CC meetings.
Nathalie > Suggested procedure regarding committee travel and group rates.
Badili > If we could find a travel agent who could give us discounts.
Ben > With due respect, I think we have gone way over in time, and are way behind because we skipped item #3.
Jo > Last policy we need is on conflict of interest. Barb, could BRPP take this on?
Barb > I guess, they are working on a conflict of interest plan anyway.
Anita > I don’t think we can ask BRPP to do this. We need a response by the time we put proposal out on stipends. We are asking BRPP to make a decision on something that is not their prerogative. We should ask CC how they feel about these issues, such as who should recuse from votes.
Jo > The issue I’m thinking of was just an issue in Calif. I’d like to see a broad policy where ever there is a broad policy. [?]
Ben > I would be willing to start on something, I have some ideas.
Barb > There are coi type HR elements that the BRPP can use.
Nathalie > I have 2 pages on coi because I’m working on it for our board of directors. I can fax it to somebody.
Jo > Please send that to Ben.
Ben > Hadn’t realized that strategy was on there as well, and I’m interested in that, so I would wonder if Jo would take it on.
Jo > I’m willing to work on it, but not willing to be the sole person.
Nathalie > Let’s ask CC for somebody to step forward.
Jo > Strategic planning is next. Ben interested?
Ben > Yes. Starlene had talked to me. ICA in Chicago. Asked them to send me some materials. Would put together some ideas and send to SC and talk about in a future call.
Anita > We had started strategic planning at last SC meeting in DC. We did solicit input. We never followed up. Made commitment to CC that we would include them, which I propose that we do, and include them ASAP.
Ben > Will do unless Anita wants to ; she took initiative before.
Anita > No, if Ben has materials. But will send Ben materials I got before.
Jo > Do we hear from John or Elizabeth first. Do you either have time constraints?

Feb 14
Elizabeth > Were all interested in having a Green speaker on Feb 15 at the rally. Dean sent us the SC letter for their United for Peace meeting. The Chair of the program committee read a list of speakers which included no Green speakers. Tom Sevigny and I made the case for a Green speaker. So far there are 20 confirmed speakers, but no Greens. We have a rep going to the meeting tonight. We thought it absurd that we should have to fight for a speaker. So we came up with the idea that we have a press conference with GP leaders from around the world. That developed into an idea for a Green speakout in the evening.
Ben > We need to figure out how to follow up on getting a speaker. CT speakers have been mentioned and I would add Chuch Turner in Boston. SC needs to deal with the question of how to deal with how to choose the speaker.
Anita > Eliz., Did you get a chance to talk to Leslie Cagan?
Eliz > I know her and took the letter to her. The entire group has decided that speakers should be 75% people of color and 50% women. We made a strong case for Eliz Horton Sheff.
Jo > SC needs to consider the choosing the person.
Ben > Let’s make the list 3 people 3: Sheff, Chen, Turner ; 3 people of color.
Jo > Do you feel that Tom started working on this?
Eliz > Tom went to the meeting.
Dean > Tom asked CT officeholders if they could participate, mostly for the 2-14 events. He represented us at the meeting, but I don’t know he is involved in the overall selection for 2-15.
Ben > I propose we approve that list of 3, vet those people, ask Tom if he wants to follow up.
Barb > Who will get this started? Ben ; please send me those names again.
Events on 14th
Eliz > Committee of 15 formed in New York City who are excited about this. I would like to hear SC’s point of view on how you can help us. We want elected officials from around the world to come to New York to participate. Press conference is in UN Church Center — secured for no charges. Between 11am and 2pm. Have secured St. Mary’s Church in Harlem on W 126thSt. with music interspersed in program I forwarded to you. We don’t have any confirmed speakers. To do this, we need your help in inviting speakers.
Dean > Hard to get European officeholders due to protests in Europe. Also, with officeholder meeting the week after, it may be hard to get US officeholders unless they were already planning to attend the meeting.
Barb > Would probably fall onto one or two people. Process would be difficult.
Ben > At the end of this we need to test for consensus regarding co-sponsorship of events. Proposal also mentions SC member; and that won’t be me. Anybody on SC going? I don’t see this as being an event where officeholders are necessarily the most qualified. I can help give some ideas on other speakers.
Nathalie > We need refer Eliz to the IC which would know who is coming. Concern is we are getting involved at the last minute and not doing the strategic work we would need to do.
Dean > I could send an email to the officeholder listserve asking if anybody is or can go, and can work with Eliz on that. We might consider only doing one of the two events, depending on how many people we find.
Anita > I’m going.
Jo > We have a proposal. Am concerned about co-sponsorship because that implies liability. Is there insurance?
Eliz > Hadn’t thought about that. Unitarian Universalists and St. Mary’s are inviting us in. We have never had insurance at these events; they have their own insurance.
Anita > We do these kinds of things all the time. They are inside, not a demonstration. I don’t think it’s a problem.
Jo > Any concerns about limited liability? None. Any concerns overall? None
Ben > Agreed on peace mob calls to take this on. Got web page up with Kevin. Got some registrations. Eliz will get some housing requests.
Eliz > Planning to for 200 people, especially for speakers.
Ben > Feeling good about it.
Nathalie [?]
Dean > Suggestion to produce buttons for visibility. $280 for 1000 for $600 for 2500. From merchandise in the budget.
Jo > Proposal ; concerns? Approved.
Nathalie > Women in front of UN bldg, for March 8 event. Mobilization include that as well.
Ben > Annie mentioned that as well.
Dean > Eliz had asked for me to go up and help. Is that okay?
Jo > Any concerns? Approved

Eder request
Barb > I think there should be a proposal to give this one-time allocation. I’m going to start at $1000; a little over half what they need.
John R > We need $2400 overall to give John Eder the support he needs that is crucial to him, the state party and national party. We have raised $700 so far, asking for $1000, will raise another $700.
Ben > Why the increase?
John > Because we realized we needed more money than we had planned for.
Nathalie > Propose a loan.
Jo > Is Maine interested in a loan?
John > No; we will not pay it back.
Jo > Proposal for $1000, that we put it out to the CC, right Barb?
Barb > I think Maine is asking the SC to make the decision.
Jake > I don’t know how the SC can get around the fact that we have 170 elected Greens and that this is precedent setting. I would like to say yes, but can’t.
Ben > I agree and there are other type discretionary funds. I’m having trouble process-wise.
Jack > I want to repeat my concern that if we escalate this to the CC on our efforts to get states involved in state-based fundraising, it is a precedent; but so is John Eder. If the SC feels the [that?] doubtful, they should ask the CC for guidance. That would make us look better.
Anita > I support doing this. It is precedent setting, but we are not getting 170 request[s]. Some of them have been in there. This is a precedent. One of those situations where our need has outstepped our procedures. We should have an officeholder fund. The states can see how the national party is a benefit. I support doing this. If we did send this to the CC, it would be for an expedited decision.
Jo > The GPCA received in excess of 36 requests from officeholders and candidates because they knew we had money, the first time GPUS has done this. I support an accelerated vote of the CC.
Ben > I agree with Jo.
Nathalie > I don’t see why Maine doesn’t want a loan. I am opposed to states coming to us like this because we don’t have a process.
Barb > As we grow, we are going to continue to set precedents. Are we going to put everything we have behind our candidates or not? It’s okay for me if it goes to the CC, okay, but if there are SC members who agree with this, they need to be vocal about this on the CC list.
John > Precedent setting [is] a fact. Should have seen John Eder today in the legislature. Also insist that this is more than a financial matter. We need the evidence of financial support; [I] can’t overemphasize that this is a crisis situation.
Morgen > From a different angle, [I] have been busting my balls to get our state party [to understand(?)] how vital the national party is and how we can help each other.
Jo > We have a proposal; to take a 48 hour vote for $1000 for Maine Green Independent Party and Barb would be vote manager.
Nathalie > Request that this is exceptional, and that state parties should not come to the SC in the future for money for their officeholders or candidates.
Anita > Didn’t hear much of what Nathalie said. What John asked is whether this committee vote to allocate the funds. If that fails, we vote on the CC vote.
Ben > CCC will be making grants to candidates based on criteria that we have been developing, and that we not bar that.
[discussion ensued as to where the funds would be coming from, where allocated]
Barb > As floor manager, I would write that proposal.
Jo > Call the question ; does the SC we [delete we?] want to take $1000 from the budget to give to the Maine GP. Roll-call:
Nathalie > Take from discretionary funds once policy for it is passed. #2; SC should make decision because CC will bog down. But send notice to the CC but that we will take additional requests.
Anita > I’m sorry, but if we put in contingency for taking from discretionary funds, it will take too long.
Jo > We need to take a vote without the details.
Ben > No
Jo > No
Jake > Yes
Barb > Yes
Nathalie > Yes
Anita > Yes
Badili > Yes
Jo > Barb, If you could work with people on the details.
Nathalie > Pay the money now; will allocate it later.
Jake > We understand that we are writing a check for $1000 for Maine Independent GP.
Barb > I accept the amendment as Nathalie just gave it.
Morgen > Do we get to see the wording of the proposal?
Ben > We’re not putting it out to the CC as a proposal. I expect concerns from the CC, I think Maine came forth in good faith, I have problems with the process.

2004 Convention bid
Jo > Barb, When are we going to vote on the 2004 bid.
Dean > Barb agreed to do the vote for 2004.
Jo > I would like Dean and Barb to deal with 2004.
Ben > Barb was asking about dealing with 2003. Jo with 2004, not Barb.

SC choice of speakers for State of the Union Response
Anita > Issue is going okay. Some people got histrionic, but is going okay. We should just not panic when these things happen. Try to stop, listen, talk.
Ben > I’m concerned that the LG have not heard anything back from the SC. I wanted to wait until the call tonight. I’d like to be able to go back to them. I don’t want to condemn Natalie at all and that I think the concerns were valid. I was hoping the SC was doing something as a whole.
Jo > Anita, should the SC make a statement?
Anita > Not a bad idea. I can draft something, or maybe Ben can draft something. It’s got to be something everybody is comfortable with.
Badili > Because of email problems, I know very little about this. I would like to know more before I can make a comment.

Officeholder meeting
Jo > Calif has not been successful in convincing Mike Feinstein that the meeting should be moved. Calif is planning to send a letter to the officeholders to let them know of the problem. Peggy was going to come on and explain what California was going to do. I’m not sure that California should be contacting the officeholders directly. We’re expecting reporters to pick this up soon. We would like to do everything to protect officeholders. We’re asking the national party what you think we should do.
Anita > I feel that this is important and we don’t have enough time. Is there an alternate way that we can discuss this? Another conference call?
Jo > Some people working on this are meeting Sunday at 530-642-5373 at 9pm pacific time. Will ask permission to send USGP SC the letters we’re planning to send.
Anita > If I can’t make the call, I will read the letter and call. Peggy?
Ben > I’m assuming there are other Pennsylvanians on for their conference call. We should get off.

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