BGP Minutes 9/25/03

BGP Minutes – Thursday, September 25, 2003

Introductions were made and agenda approved. 1) Reallocation of BGP responsibilities – review and brainstorming. vince passed a BGP responsibilities sheet and Peter stated how BGP committees had become moribund and need to be not just restarted but perhaps changed to be task driven instead, It was noted that messages, mail and email were not being attended to and that the office needs organizing. Elissa asked about the email status and Peter stated that he had done research and chose Charmnet and we should have email very shortly. Vince offered to check phone messges – this can be done remotely, Paul Dibos voulunteered to organize the office at some point, Peter offered to check the mail and email. Erin volunteered to be a photographer for Green events. Peter, Marty and Elissa volunteered for data entry/data management. Elissa stated that she has been updating the web site. Peter asked for help with coordinating mailings and Matt offered to help. James will log the minutes of the meetings. An extended conversation took place on the topic of media/outreach. Peter suggested that Scott, Vince, Kathryn and the candidates could respond to happenings in the city. Myles stated that such a committee should be careful not to release too much and be careful not to overstep the role of the candidate in their district. Peter agreed and stated that the candidates should meet regularly. Elissa stated that the Publicity & Outreach Committee used to meet monthly and was effective during that time. Terry said that the media committee should be technicians that know the contact information of the right to be given press releases, but not

the ones who develop the policies.  Dave Greene agreed that this committee

could supply names of contacts for the candidates. There was discussion as to the correct name for this committee and its duties. Peter said that although the exact shape of this committee was not yet clear, the interested people should meet and further define the role. Marty made a comment that the mayoral candidates could take on the function of BGP spokespeople. Myles said that although the mayoral candidates could take on some of that role, the co-chairs serve better as party spokespeople. Peter agreed, as the status of the mayoral candidates is not yet clear, and that the BGP spokespeople should be the ones elected to this purpose – the co-chairs – and comfortable with the

media.  There was more discussion of who the appropriate party

spokespeople are and it was agreed that the elected co-chairs are the party spokespeople. Elissa noted that the MD Green party had list-serves for the different committees and that this was very effective. Kay stated that the committee under discussion should be called the Media Committee and should be in charge of writing press releases, getting press releases from candidates and releasing them. At this point, it was agreed to extend the time allotted to finish the list of responsibilities. Victor agreed to work on fundraising as long as the party didn’t tell him what to do. Paul questioned whether the “outreach” committee would be dealing with the primary and said that the people who were in favor of the primary originally should be the ones to volunteer for this. Peter spoke about the idea that committees should be able to spend some amount of money without approval of the entire body, Marty stated that anything over $100 would have to be approved that way. Further discussion of finance was tabled for the next meeting. Nobody signed up for electoral. Vince stated that he no longer wants to be on the electoral committee bur wished now to focus on issues instead. Dave asked if he would stay on for a while as coordinator. Matt volunteered to help candidates stay connected. 2) State Report – Victor and Elissa – I could hear very little of this and what I did hear was kind of confusing – all I got here is that MGP needs all locals to have a nomination procedure and Vince will be

supplying that.  There is an ongoing thing about Green candidates being

able to spend up to the state of MD limit on their own campaigns without it affecting their status as Green candidates and that there were meetings coming up at Pat Cruz’s house and also on campus somewhere. Then a report of the membership committee with interesting numbers on the total number of registered Greens. 3) Possible state demonstration against budget cuts James spoke about a demonstration he wants to do, possible in January, about the State budget cuts and how they effect people (esp. state employees). He gave the example of how his job in corrections is less safe with fewer employees. Someone suggested as a resource for information. James stated that MD subsidizes Southwest Airlines and United Airlines. He has called Zach Ramsey at AFSME 92 to see if they have any protest planned that BGP could be involved in and has not heard back yet. James is looking for BGP help in getting this going. Elissa suggested Pat Cruz as a resource. Kay stated that we should endorse it, Dave G seconded. Terry said that we should support the idea of a protest but that it was tricky to endorse something that does not yet have substance. Myles said that it should be brought back when better formed. Peter stated that CLUB (Communities and Labor United for Baltimore) needed a new project since Question P is settled. There was a discussion about how Single Payer Health Care and/or instant run-off voting might be issues that could be next for this group. Victor worked with them on Question P. (something was said about League of Women

Voters which I didn’t hear)

The protest in York was mentioned – it is going forward. Peter will work with Flint on this. Following was a discussion about the restoration of the right of felons to vote, as to what the law currently is and whether people with more than one felony conviction could vote in MD. Paul asked that that this issue be discussed late in more depth to see if there was agreement as to the Green stance on the multiple-felony question. 4) Candidate Q & A -Matt Clark and Paul Dibos. Both candidates described the boundaries of their districts and answered questions. Terry asked Matt if he would be closing his district to further candidates and Matt said yes. Elissa asked what his main issue was and Matt replied that if he had to choose one it would be empowerment of the city council. Kevin asked if this was an issue Matt thought people could get energized over. Matt said it was. Kay agreed and stated she felt it was a mistake for Matt not to campaign on the issue of the military budget. Kevin asked if he could see anyway of helping the immigrants that might be of help in revitalizing the city but are being priced out of housing. Vince asked what he would say to people who were concerned that single-member districts would reduce constituent service. Matt said that he did not think it would, pointing out that Nick D’Adamo had done most of the constituent service in his 3-member district, a much larger district than Matt’s. Vince asked what the City Council could do about schools, Myles made a statement about how City Council members could use their office as a bully-pulpit for issues such as this that were not under their direct control. Paul then spoke on the topic of sustainability in Baltimore as one of his most important issues. 5) Announcements: October 25th- pro-impeachment rally in DC. October 10 or 11th – Myles having a meeting at his house to seriously kick-off his campaign and ask people interested in his campaign to attend. He will provide food. Kay announce a film the next night at the AFSC sponsored by the Hiroshima/Nagasaki committee, “The Last Just Man.” Terry announced a play coming to the Mechanic, “The Exonerated.” The Campaign to End the Death Penalty has purchased a bloc of tickets for Wednesday, November 12th. Ticket prices are $23 or $46. Purchase tickets through Terry. He must have the order in by November 10. Marcel reminded people of the Pledge of Resistance protest in DC on October 4th at the NSA. Peter and Elissa reminded everyone of the upcoming FTAA protests. 6) The vote was taken on Paul and Matt. Both were endorsed.