LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS OF NEW MEXICO
BOARD MEETING MINUTES DRAFT 3
SEPTEMBER 21, 2019
SANTA FE HIGHER EDUCATION CENTER
Present: Kim Sorensen, secretary; Karen Wentworth, LWVCNM; Susan Haase, LWVSFC; Meredith Machen, director; Diane Goldfarb, director; Patricia Hawkins, director; Jody Larson, archivist; Dick Mason, action; Karen Douglas, director; Judy Williams, past president; Hannah Burling, president; Suzanne Ronneau, treasurer; Chris Furlanetto, program; Kathy Brook, co-president LWVSNM; Barbara Calef, 2nd vice president; Akkana Peck, webmaster; Janet Blair, communications,
The meeting was called to order at 11:00 a.m. by President Hannah Burling.
Approval of Agenda. The motion to approve the agenda as is passed.
Approval of the July 20 Board Minutes. The motion to approve the July 20th board minutes with a minor correction passed.
Hannah Burling reported on the LWVUS Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion program reiterating that LWVUS has recommended that we collaborate with other organizations that serve under-represented groups in order to increase diversity. Hannah has met with two younger League members who have agreed to develop a list of possible organizations. She also offered to talk to any younger members in the local chapters to discuss ways to increase diversity within their chapters. Dick Mason suggested we could reach out to organizations that represent under-represented groups to help with the advocacy workshop. Meredith Machen reported that 10 people from LWVSF have taken advantage of the diversity fund scholarships.
Hannah reported that she met with the Governor’s Commission on the Census and has committed League support in helping them. Dick will email a link to Hannah that has current information about the commission, including the schedule of upcoming meetings.
Hannah said she met with Janet Blair about the Communication Plan and they have agreed to a couple of changes. The board will receive the final draft and will vote on the plan at the November meeting.
The board discussed the merits of moving the date of future conventions/councils to the last weekend in April, citing that May is not an optimal time for our student members and parents to attend due to graduations and other commitments. The motion to hold future LWVNM conventions and councils the last week in April passed.
Janet reported that she found the LWVNM microphone and it is in good working order. Pat Hawkins suggested that LWVNM modernize their equipment. The motion to table the discussion for the next board meeting to have time to research models and costs passed.
Akkana Peck suggested that, to lessen confusion, documents to be presented at board meetings should be uploaded to a fixed place such as Drop Box or Google Docs. Some members expressed hesitancy with using those programs, so Hannah suggested all board documents be sent to Akkana by no later than the Monday night preceding the meeting. Akkana will then compile the documents into a packet and send out a link by Tuesday night. The board agreed to try this with the understanding that any late submissions will not be put on the agenda.
Barbara suggested that a week before the convention/council, delegates be emailed a link to the convention packet that was published in the La Palabra.
Suzanne Ronneau provided the report. Income for the period was $76.16, expenses were $446.60, the ending bank balance as of 9/15/2019 was $25,108.85 and the ed fund balance was $4,046.60. The LWVCNM fund marked for LWVNM recruitment of diverse individuals still has a balance of $2000. Year to date income and expenses were $1,615.16 and $3151.98 respectively.
Jan Strand, chair of the financial review committee, reported that the committee found the financial records to be in order. The report is attached.
Dick Mason gave the action report. The Legislative Advocacy workshop is scheduled for December 7. LWVNM priorities for the upcoming session include: budget and revenue, redistricting reform, decriminalization of abortion, and solar tax credit. League Day at the legislature is scheduled for February 6. The event at the Rotunda will be from 12:30-2:30 p.m. There will be 12 tables there for women’s organizations to present information. Senator Rodriquez and Representative Ferrary have agreed to sponsor the memorials.
Meredith provided the board with drafts of the proclamation and memorials. Barbara recommended changes and Meredith will send out revised drafts for the next meeting.
Judy reported that the Ethics Commission has been formed with Jeremy Farris serving as the executive director. A coalition of organizations including the League, New Mexico First, Common Cause, and others will act as watch dogs for the commission.
Dick reported on the Fair Districts for New Mexico Project. Redistricting is a LWVUS priority. They are working with Democratic groups to push for reform. Judy will attend a training October 9-11 in Washington DC. NM In Depth will be publishing a detailed history of redistricting in NM in early October. LWVNM will be presenting to the interim Courts, Corrections & Justice Committee on October 10 in Albuquerque. Dick reported that The Obama Foundation has a program called Redistricting University. Dick hopes to get them to come to New Mexico. Dick and Kathleen Burke are hoping to convince the Democrat Platform Committee to agree to a resolution that redistricting reform be added to the platform. Dick reported that LWVNM is considering a memorial for the upcoming legislative session to create an Interim Redistricting Task Force that would include LWVNM and other good government groups. Ultimately, the League would like to see an Independent Redistricting Commission be created by constitutional amendment.
League members are encouraged to advocate for redistricting reform by writing letters to the editor, op eds, and contacting legislators. Information can be found on the website: www.fairdistrictsnm.org.
Diane Goldfarb reported that the likelihood of HB51, Decriminalization of Abortion, being put on the legislative docket, is still up in the air. She reported that the Coalition for Choice is in the process of reorganizing. The last meeting was dedicated to discussing the structure and she is optimistic improvements will be made. Diane reported that members of a decriminalization steering committee (separate from the coalition) are talking to Democrats who voted against the bill.
Dick reported that voter registration is possible up to 3 days before election day at the county clerk’s office in every county. However, in Bernalillo and possibly other counties people can register and vote during the early voting period at vote centers as well. There seems to be a lot of confusion. Dick said America Votes agreed to clarify. He recommended the local Leagues contact the County Clerks in their areas to find out how same day voter registration is being handled and send their findings to LWVNM so they can publicize it.
Judy reported that she and Hannah had a discussion August 21 with Megan Brown, the LWVUS VOTE411 Manager, about expanding Voter Guides throughout New Mexico. VOTE411 will automatically provide information (in both English and Spanish) on US candidates including responses to questions, but it would be up LWVNM to contact all candidates other than for the national elections. We would have to develop one or two questions for each office (with the same questions being used for each office throughout the state). Judy recommended we schedule a webinar with Megan to see what LWVUS is offering. She will contact her for some dates. The cost to use VOTE411 varies from $5000 (every race in every district) to $500 (statewide races only) depending on what we would like them to include. Akkana recommended there be a caveat guaranteeing reimbursement if the contract is broken. In the meantime, questions for Megan Brown may be submitted to Judy. Advantages of using VOTE411 include broadening our outreach to the entire state, increased visibility, and not having to provide information on the national races.
Chris Furlanetto reported that a few members have sent her information for the Positions History document. Barbara will send information about the Natural Resources Position. Janet will make sure Chris gets past La Palabras that she has, after which they will be passed on to Jody for archiving.
BYLAWS AND POLICIES
Barbara introduced two policies; a revised Nonpartisan Policy, and a Minutes Policy. The motions that were made to adopt both the Nonpartisan Policy and the Minutes Policy passed. Both policies will be posted on the website. Jody is developing a work plan for review of policies to be discussed at the November meeting. She stated we need a policy that identifies which LWVNM documents we should retain for historical purposes. She would like the board to establish an advisory group comprised of 2-3 members she can consult with if she has questions. Barbara noted that the policy on Electronic Board Meetings needs reviewing. She and Janet will propose changes at the next board meeting. She also reminded us that the MAL policy needs revision to incorporate LWVUS changes. Meredith will bring a proposal to the next board meeting.
Janet Blair reported on the Communication Plan (see above). We will vote on it at the November meeting. Akkana had nothing to report concerning the website and documents storage.
Meredith reported on the 100th Anniversary committee. She is working on both the Proclamation for the governor to declare February 6, 2020 “the 100th birthday of the League of Woman Voters” and the Legislative Memorials. Meredith recommended that not only should we highlight the contributions of New Mexico suffragists, but we should also recognize those who contributed to the advancement of women’s rights in New Mexico prior to the suffrage movement. Meredith also noted that New Mexico is becoming known for their role in women’s advancement via the National Women’s Votes Trail Markers. Meredith reported that there will be exhibits at the Roundhouse on February 6 and speakers at the Rotunda. She is working on finding a speaker for the League reception as well. In addition, there are events planned for August 22, 26 and 29, 2020. Meredith will provide more details at the next meeting. Hannah stressed the need to communicate a schedule of events planned state-wide. Dick recommended we need some press coverage. Meredith and Janet will work on a plan. Meredith will ask the committee chairs from each local League to provide a report on their centennial plans for the next board meeting. In addition, she will work on some talking points and send out some LWVNM history highlights to the board before the next meeting. It was suggested we create a display board about the history of LWV and plan to wear suffragist costumes at the events.
Dick asked about the budget. Meredith reported that there is $5,000 budgeted for the centennial with $1,000 designated for the event at the Roundhouse. Dick recommended some of that be used to rent the 12 tables.
Susan Haase reported on the 100-year minute project. These are short history lessons she has compiled to educate people about the suffrage movement. Susan has contacted public library directors and has received interest from several directors. It was suggested the local Leagues may want to incorporate the 100-year minutes in their celebrations, so she will email them to the board and send a couple to Janet for La Palabra.
ANNOUNCEMENTS, INITIATIVES, AND OTHER BUSINESS
The deadline for articles and reports for La Palabra is September 25th. Hannah has a meeting scheduled with some people from Magdalena who are interested in forming a new League. The next meeting is November 16th in Las Cruces at the Good Samaritan Society Las Cruces Village. A lunch buffet will be provided at a cost of $15 each.
The meeting was adjourned at 2:44 p.m.
Kim Sorensen 9/25/2019
Barbara Calef 10/4/2019
Chris Furlanetto 10/09/2019