May 15, 2003

SC Minutes — May 15, 2003 (Approved)

Anita Rios, Jack Uhrich, Jake Schneider (timekeeper), Jane Hunter (PEC co-chair), Badili Jones, Jo Chamberlain (facilitator), Dean Myerson (notetaker)

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
GW = George Washington University
IC = International Committee
ICA = Institute for Cultural Affairs
LC = Lavender Caucus
LG = Lavender Greens
PEC = Presidential Exploratory Committee
SC = Steering Committee
[Brackets denote editor’s suggested corrections. Some punctuation corrections done with no content change. -ed.]

Minutes approval:
Jo > Were minutes posted from last meeting?
Dean > Yes.
Jo > Did it happen 5 days after the meeting?
Dean > I had said by Monday, but did it on the following Friday. Corrections came on Wednesday.
Jo > Okay to post them to CC on Monday?
Dean > Tuesday is easier for me since Monday is usually busy.
Jo > Is silence assumed to be approval by deadline by the SC?
Anita > Yes, I usually don’t have substantive changes. Later on, maybe we should have an SC member, the secretary maybe, do the minutes. Also for SC call.

[John Strawn joins, PEC co-chair]
Financial/fundraising report
Jake > Anybody not get emailed [this] report? A couple of amendments: forgot to add in budgeted reserve for May. Should be $50,833. Additional deposits of $1737; about $1500 in outstanding invoices. State sharing of $12,030. Or maybe $12,600 owed. Needs to be paid by end of the month. Question is that I’m going to need moneys from reserve to pay state sharing unless we get outstanding contributions in next few days. Dean?
Dean > Tomorrow sustainer income of about $6000, but otherwise we are entering the lean part of the month regarding income.
Jake > We would be bottoming out the checkbook based on that. Would like to transfer $10,000 to active account from reserve if need by [be?].
Jo > Proposal from Jake to use reserve for this not to exceed $10,000. Any concerns?
[Nathalie Paravicini joins]
Nathalie > When is the state sharing payment due? Can it be delayed?
Jake > It’s already late. Should have been out some time ago. Doug [GPUS accountant] stated he would like to get it out by the end of the month. States are calling asking for the money. I don’t think it can be delayed.
Jack > Concur with Jake. I have received a number of emails over the months, people are complaining, the word is getting around. Frustration growing about whether we are living up to what we said we would do.
Jake > I wanted to pay this tomorrow or Monday.
Jo > Call the question. Concerns about proposal?
Anita > I agree with the proposal, but I have questions. Where is the primary amount coming from sustainers? I would like to see a breakdown of our expenses[?] [W]hat we are paying to raise money[?]
Dean > I can send Doug’s report on state sharing, though it may be difficult to understand for some. Also, you are asking for our fundraising spending?
Anita > Yes. How much are we putting back into fundraising, and how much is going to build the party?
Jake > Another issue. What contact information for the yellow pages ad? Our address may be changing if we move.
Jo > Yes, PO Box and phone number.
Anita > Web page as well.
Nathalie > Will number change?
Dean > Not sure, use toll-free. Also make sure the listing started with “Green”, not “The Green . .”

Steering Committee Fundraising
Jack > Haven’t heard from most of you, except from Jo.
Anita > Haven’t done this. My gut isn’t in it. Big question is about where our money is going. Our we being efficient with our money? Hopefully I will get some answers that will get beyond that.
Jack > Anita, have you seen the piece I put out about what the money we raised did to help build state Green Parties?
Anita > This is a long discussion for this conference call, but that wasn’t particularly helpful for me. I’m thinking of doing fundraising targeted towards something specific that is useful to the party.
Jack > I’d like to know within 24 hours if you are going to call these large donors. If you’re not going to call them, somebody else needs to. This resolicitation is doing well, and that is from these types of calls. I have passed these large donors to you. If you’re not going to do them, I’d like to have them back.
Nathalie > Take mine back. I’m working on the local party-building. I’m burned out. I’ll give you a call when I am ready to make calls.

Nader mailing list
Dean > Fundraising Comm dealing with issue that the Nader 2000 list we purchased for direct mail was found to have excluded major donors. Fundraising Committee suggested that the SC would need to deal with contact with Nader, and the issue is whether we want to complain about not getting the major donors, and not being told they were filtered out.
Jake > We discussed last night on the Fundraising Committee call about sending a letter to Nader complaining about this. I suggested we get SC approval for such a letter.
Nathalie > Caveat emptor. Buyer beware, this is what we get. We should write the letter and complain. It’s almost fraud.
Jo > Request to write this letter and send to Nader list management people. Any concerns?
Nathalie > Should letter be written by SC instead of Fundraising Committee?
Jake > To be honest, signatures from both committees should be included.
Jo > Sounds like that is accepted.

Committee/Liaison Reports
Jane > PEC continues and [is] discuss[ing] candidacies. Last SC call, two issues came up. One was advisor participation. Other was PEC involvement in strategy discussions. As to advisors, PEC originally structured with significant geographical diversity. Voting membership should be one member per state. We had situations where key people who were on 2000 PEC, and people who had key useful contacts for potential candidates, moved and could not represent the state they moved to. Also, some are liaisons to other committees. These people have been very valuable to the PEC. PEC doesn’t make policy, not much vote-taking or decision-making. Just work to contact people who are difficult to reach. Can take 15 rounds of phone calls and faxes to have a phone conversation. I would find it extremely difficult to do our job without the advisors. When we do have a decision to make, the voting members are the ones to vote. I would be very opposed to losing their support.
Second item: at the end of the last call, Anita suggested that PEC should be focused on calling candidates and not on policy. We have been concentrating on contacting potential candidates and discussions with them. We have engaged in some discussion of how we can facilitate the appropriate strategic discussion of the 2004 campaign. It didn’t seemed to be owned by anybody else, unless SC wants to do that. Also getting input from potential candidates on things we should be addressing. We think those things should be in front of the delegates in DC. We haven’t been making strategy, but we were the only natural champion for those discussions.
John > With respect to voting, it’s not really an issue. We operate by consensus for the most part. Just a couple votes early on. I also consider issues of consultants and advisors to be a red herring. Our outreach to states for participation has fallen on deaf ears as per usual. As to policy, I’m not sure where we could be accused of making policy. We are assessing candidates and their ability to wage campaigns or not. As to strategy, we are trying to facilitate the discussion. Many discussions are going on, and we can’t pretend otherwise. We want an event at the national meeting to help facilitate this at[?] as well [as a] facilitated discussion in DC. On the whole, we have a great committee. Downside when committee members state support for one candidate or another in a public way.
Anita > To be frank, I think there are a lot of issues. If other people are thinking like Ben, when we withdrew as an advisor, I think it is presumptuous to state it is a non-issue. How we deal with it is important. From having my feelers out, I do hear, and have gotten feedback from Greens in Ohio who are significantly dissatisfied with how the committee is operating. Many people in Ohio feel the committee has very little credibility. As to observers, this is a closed committee because the argument was made that you could operate with a limited number of people, so we didn’t use the normal standing committee formula for membership. I know it is hard to get members, but this is a special case and process. For the committee to then go outside of the CC and bring in other people is a violation of how the committee was structured. In terms of strategy, it’s inevitable you will talk about. I didn’t mean to imply that was inappropriate. The thing that is problematic, I would like to see a partnership, that you bring it back to the CC.
Jane > We don’t want to make strategy. What we want to do, and have asked to do, that there be a forum that involves the CC, which we volunteered to facilitate. Our discussions in the PEC are how we facilitate the discussion within the Green Party and that doesn’t get negative attention from the press and elsewhere.
John > Strategy is a part of our charter, to make recommendations to the CC. That was reapproved in Philadelphia. We aren’t putting out a line that the party should follow. With respect to a closed committee, the advisors, Ross Mirkarimi was listed in Philadelphia. For him to be a bone of contention is an absurdity and I am upset about it. If there are specific issues, let’s get specific rather than throwing around generalities.
Nathalie > Vibes. You are a co-chair. The SC is bringing concerns from other people. To say there is no problem when people are complaining is not good. You need to recognize that people are bringing these problems up. To have advisors from states without asking their state parties is not correct. Since you don’t vote much, advisors have a lot of influence. You need to come up with responses to these concerns and not brush them off.
Jo > 5 minutes over. Idea of advisors is beyond what some people thought was the action of the PEC . . .
Jane > The charter that was approved in Philadelphia included this. We thought it was inappropriate to have two members from a state, so we had a choice to make.
John > With respect to replacing advisors, I don’t think it is an issue at all.
Dean > Vibes. People are interrupting. Pleas let the facilitator facilitate.
Nathalie > You are in denial. You need to come up with solutions. The advisors are in effect replacing delegates. What is the function of advisors? To advise, not to act as full-fledged members.
Jane > I’m sorry to respond to this. We are talking about a structure that was approved originally.
John > Once again, I don’t know of an instance of a state that has pulled out, and an advisor replaced that member.
Nathalie > Point of clarification. I’m not saying they technically replaced them. It is a defacto situation.
Jane > The advisors were specifically involved because of their contact and their knowledge.
Nathalie > Then they need to be restricted to doing that.
Jane > Since the bulk of their work has been involved in that. I haven’t heard of anybody particularly complaining about Annie Goeke or Dean Myerson. There seems to be a particular personality conflict with an individual who has always acted strictly as an advisor. PEC members are grown up enough to say so if they disagree with his input.
Jake > 10 minutes over. Have to buy some time if we want to continue.
Jo > Any resolution tonight besides asking Jane and John to come back next time, with some communication in between?
John > I would like that very much. If anybody has a specific concern, please address Jane or I. We have a PEC conference next Monday. I don’t want to respond to the same thing again and again, so contact me directly if there is a concern. I am willing to deal with their concerns as I did with Ben’s concerns. I would prefer to do this in a phone conference, but next week isn’t good for me.
Anita > I think your initial suggestion was a piece of what would be helpful. Some documentation so there would be clarity. We can all look at our notes. I don’t want us to torture each other with this. I don’t hear that anybody really feels good about this conversation. Maybe we could talk to other folks in the PEC as well, and have an open dialog as well. Maybe a conference call soon is probably not in order.
Nathalie > Process point please email PEC member names to us.
John > Perhaps we could resend the charter. I would welcome and invite any SC members to sit in on the PEC call. 2 hour call starting at 6:30pm pacific time.
Jo > Please email the number to us.
[Jane and John leave]

Anita > Sent request for an editor to the Editorial Board. Eric Prindle stepped forward and has support in the committee. I think he is a good choice. They want to deal with controversial issues, such as the Feinstein issue in Calif.
Dean > They decided not to cover the California financial issue.
Jake > Greenpages hasn’t been controversial before. It would be a whole new different thing.
Anita > They have been going in that direction, regarding internal controversy. To me, it almost borders on gossip for issues not resolved. They previously considered reporting on Campus Greens prior to any resolution there. They also changed the title on one of Dean’s article when he was trying to be upbeat. But there is enough balance in the committee. It is important to maintain a good balance. Hopefully more people [will serve] when they become a standing committee.
Jo > Things printed regarding the Feinstein issue could result in a lawsuit. They might need to get an attorney. Comments about an ongoing legal case could also result in an action.
Badili > I know of no other political organization that airs its dirty laundry before it is resolved. We should be involved in what Greenpages’ mission is.
Dean > The proposal in front of the CC defines their mission and their role. People should look at that and see if there are issues. Then you can ask for an amendment. Once it passes, the Greenpages Editorial Board will interpret that as it sees fit.

[Alex Brideau joins]
Jo > Please give a report on ad-hoc merchandise committee.
Alex > I was approached to take this over after Gregg Jocoy’s heart attack. I spoke to Gregg earlier this evening, he is recovering nicely. I’m waiting to receive all of the information from him. Logos are to be posted on the web page. Not much else. We have compiled a list of potential vendors to approach about a business relationship. Also compiled a list of logo selection people.
[Tom Sevigny joins]
Dean > Logos already posted on the website. They aren’t all logos, some are full merchandise designs. Do you need me to send you the URL?
Alex > Yes. These designs vary as to what they are to be used for, or whether they are ready.
Anita > Question: do you have the list of vendors contacted?
Alex > Gregg is sending that to me today. They were submitted to us to eventually contact. Nobody has been contacted yet.
Anita > I would like to see them.

Pending/In-progress votes

2004 convention
Badili > Have to set discussion and vote time and period.
Jo > How many cities?
Badili > 3.
Jo > Are the proposals long?
Badili > Yes, they are accessible by the website.
Dean > Posted Minneapolis proposal is the old one. I posted Kevin on this today, to replace with the new proposal.
Badili > I suggest 2 week discussion and one week vote.
Jo > Any reason not to have the normal 3 week discussion?
Badili > That’s fine.
Jo > Any concern with this?
Start on the 19th.

Discretionary Spending policy
Jake > This is never going to end. We have 25 votes for the restarted vote, 24 yes and 1 no so far. When it is approved, I want to take up the conference that Anita wants to go to.

Process point
Dean > No SC call in two weeks, it’s 3 weeks away since this is a 5 Thursday month.

POCLAD proposal
Tom > The Colorado proposal just urges states to do something. Not sure why we are voting on this.
Jo > Are you suggesting we not vote on this? People are sick of voting.
Nathalie > This is where the SC needs to exert leadership. That we do not consider it a resolution. We suggest that such things be sent on the discussion list.
Anita > I agree with Tom that this shouldn’t necessarily be a proposal. But we should talk to Colorado first. Not a function for us. Yes, we can urge them. Make a suggestion to them that they send out this appeal on the discussion list, or maybe even the COO list. Don’t want them to think we are talking this lightly.
Jo > Tom, can you do this?
Tom > Yes.
Caucus/Platform submissions
Badili > A lot of discussion. Many people would have voted differently if it was worded differently. As it is, the proposal failed. Proposing states were willing to revise the proposal. Can set a date to revote a new version.
Nathalie > Issue of the larger function of the caucuses. Is there an amendment that this is an interim proposal until that is defined.
Badili > Two discussions going on. We already voted on the function of caucuses.
Anita > We didn’t really clarify the role of caucuses, but by doing that, we gave the caucuses a seat as any state would have. This is not an interim measure. Once it passes, that’s the way it’s going to be. One group had a problem with caucuses, but another had a problem with one phrase, and might have voted differently otherwise.
Jo > Any concerns about asking for a new version?

Diversity Committee proposal
Anita > Sent you the proposal to make Diversity Committee a standing committee. It also sets the parameters of the Diversity Committee, including a role in the accreditation of caucuses. Please provide feedback. Diversity Committee would like this to be voted on before the convention. Jo asked about financial impact; there is none. It’s all bureaucratic. Will get to you as soon as possible [with] suggestion for rules for accrediting the caucuses. Tried to have a conference call with Accreditations Committee. Diversity Committee agreed to do it, but Accreditations Committee has stonewalled. Didn’t think it was a good idea; didn’t look good. Don’t think we’re really that far apart. Diversity Committee is adamant that they don’t agree about what happened in Philadelphia regarding the caucus accredited proposal. We didn’t vote on a conditional amendment. We simply voted it down. Nathalie’s notes state something different from what we remember, and that is what the Accreditations Committee is using to negate Diversity Committee suggestions. But I still don’t think the substance is that far apart. IF we could actually discuss it, we could come to agreement.
Jo > You are asking us to read the proposal and provide input. Are you asking us to facilitate a discussion between Accreditations Committee and Diversity Committee?
Anita > No, we will work on it. I will send you our proposal for caucus accreditation.

2003 CC Meeting
Dean > Priorities are choosing/hiring organizer tonight, also need committee to work on agenda and need to get SC nomination call out this weekend.
Nathalie > Call for SC nominations should include expectation of the SC member. When we send call for SC nominations, we can point to that. Then they can know what to expect. It was a larger commitment than I expected.
Anita > Nathalie, you said you have a job description?
Nathalie > Stuart Bechman sent something.
Anita > That should be helpful. For the organizer, did we make it clear that people had to be familiar with the Washington, DC area? One came from New Mexico. We should send out a message that we are going to be doing this so people are thinking about this.
Nathalie > Secretary should post the call for SC nominations. What do we do regarding Barbara’s term. Does Tom run again?
Tom > Not spelled out anywhere.
Jo > It’s in the rules.
Anita > I don’t think so. It doesn’t say. I think the most democratic thing is for Tom to fill in until the next vote, not till the end of the term. We should ask the CC. We need to put out a call and let them know that there are 3 or 4 SC positions being voted on.
Jake > We’re off the agenda.
Jo > Jake, I don’t think so. Dean had two requests: decision about the organizer, and put out a notice about SC elections. We know for sure that Secretary and two co-chairs are up and we are deciding whether Tom’s position needs to be voted on.
Nathalie > Post a call Saturday morning. I’ll look at the bylaws.
Jo > Concerns about this?
Jo > Question is who to hire as an organizer. I didn’t read them in detail. Concern about anybody who is not local?
Anita > I propose that we wait a week to decide.
Dean > We are so late already, Annie and I are sweating bullets about how far behind we are. I plead for a decision tonight.
Jo > We didn’t know we were supposed to decide.
Dean > Jake’s original proposal called for a decision today with the deadline to get resumes in yesterday.
Xxx (?) > Maybe we could vote by email over the weekend.
Jo > Dean, can you put out an email with all resumes together? People can call Tom with their vote, IRV style. Post Tom’s phone number with it.

Meeting Committee
Anita > I talked to Annie about this, but not sure if she has done anything. Could put out a message on this.
Dean > Annie wants to include MD and VA as well. May have asked MD people.
Anita > I will call some people in DC as well.
Dean > Organizer can work on this as well.

SC Recruitment
Jo > We already talked about this.

Emily DeMoor’s resignation
Anita > She resigned because she was overwhelmed. Not sure if there is anything we can do about it. Just contact their state and ask for another delegate.
Jo > She came on during a stressful discussion. There was also a lot slippage during the discussion to John and Tom’s proposal. We have had a request for a listserve that only has to do with voting.
Nathalie > Believe it or not, voting page is almost finished. A lot of that stuff will happen on the bulletin board. COO list should only be for vote dicussions anyway.
Tom > She also said she was finishing her doctoral degree. She wasn’t prepared for the workload. Also a single Mom.
Calif request for removal of Feinstein from committee lists
Jake > Did everybody see this and does anybody have a concern?
Tom > Has GPCA approached Mike Feinstein?
Jo > GPCA asked Mike Feinstein to take a leave of absence. The letter you received was a bit premature. It’s not about one person. We have a lot of people who are inserting themselves, about 6 people. We would respectfully request that such people be sent back to California for our normal process. That’s our longterm request.
Jake > Is this a Bylaws, Rules, Policies Procedures Committee issue?
Jo > This was an action based on decisions made by the state party. No action needed by this SC tonight, other than to say that this is within the bylaws.
Anita > Ginny-Marie Case sent us that letter with a high priority mark on it. I feel we need to respond to it. It looked like she was saying GPCA wants him off all the lists. So we are supposed to forward to all our committees and ask them to do this.
Badili > Is this simply a problem in California with Feinstein? I have been accused of being heavy-handed with a similar problem in Georgia.
Jo > Two proposals, from Anita and Badili. First is to send letter to committees, second to send general message. Are there any concerns with doing what Anita said?
Jake > I think Tom, as Bylaws, Rules, Policies Procedures Committee co-chair, should do this.
Tom > Okay.
Jo > Second proposal to post to committees regarding self-selecting committee people.
Anita > Each state has their own way of doing that. Must follow whatever the procedure is for their state.

Personnel policy
Tom > We need one. We have a lot of the parts for it.
Anita > A tough thing. I would like the personnel policy to be written by the committee. We’re not meeting at this point. Some have gone on to other things. We’re dealing with both the policy as well as the process for getting the policy. Should be a committee, not just Tom and I. If Tom could bring the software to the convention, and we could commit to this.
Jo > Tom, you posted a length policy once?
Tom > Yes, twice, the second one was more lengthy. From the software. It takes you step-by-step, asks you questions.
Anita > Has been my plan to get the sections of this to different people so they can work on a part of it.
Tom > You need the CD to run the software.
Anita > Hard to do without this in front of you. I will be in DC in the next couple of weeks. Maybe you can send it to DC.

COFOE membership (Coalition for Fair and Open Elections)
Jake > Received invoice. Do we join? What do we get?
Dean > We joined last year. Tom was the delegate. Dan Kinney represented us in Pennsylvania this year. They work on improving ballot access laws.
Jo > Any concerns for renewing?

New business

AFL-CIO Organizing Conference
Badili > Training for union organizers. Want to reach out to GP and Campus Greens. They want to purchase an ad in Greenpages, if we do that. Would be a good Green-Labor thing.
Jo > Proposal?
Badili > Possibly, to advertise this.
Dean > Greenpages doesn’t take ads, but maybe they would do an announcement.
Badili > Costs $150 to go. Also put out the word.

Dean > We didn’t get to discuss the June Affirmative Action conference in Chicago that Rainbow/Push invited us to. Can deal with next week.

Mediation group
Jo > This is an error. Should this be in here? I will put something forward. When did we need mediation?
Ben > In the long run, mediation should be under Communications Committee, which raises questions about Communications itself. My reaction is that I can think of a number of times we could have used mediation in the party. At the same time, I don’t think we have the capacity to set it up now.

Sending Dean to Fargo
Dean > Issue is whether we try to help folks in both North and South Dakota to set up a party, the only two states with a Green or Greenish party. People in both have contacted us recently and are interested, but need help if it is going to happen. If we are going to help them, we need to decide soon. A visit is part of what is needed.
Ben > I propose I talk to Ben and Juscha and Dean in the next couple of days to put together a plan. I might be able to go in late May or early June and bring an officeholder with me.

Minimally edited and HTML formatted by Charlie Green