Beginning with a review of the status of the Small Business Jobs legislation which recently added its 20th City Council co-sponsor, Ines Barron (There will be another forum on this topic July 22 in Washington Heights), General Meeting discussions also covered reports from District Leader Keen Berger; announcements by Nat Johnson about forums on the Spectra Pipeline extension [See the posting]; and a surprise visit from State Senator Brad Hoylman who reported on a long list of initiatives.
The results of the Club’s petitioning were presented in a statement from the Campaign Committee: 43 VID-ers had carried petitions and approximately 900 signatures were obtained. Congratulations, all.
Linda Jacobsen, who led the meeting made a presentation about this evening’s meeting being Member’s Night, to address the members’ concerns and ideas. She read an excerpt from the General Rules for Synergy, adapted from the Josephine County, Oregon, Department of Health and Community Action. She emphasized the need for respectful discussion without personal attacks. She encouraged members to speak, with a 3 minute limit on presentations with a 2 minute limit on questions and comments.
Our May 14th General Membership Meeting has a pretty full agenda. In addition to Club business we will be hosting an important discussion on Fracking and Gas Pipeline Infrastructure, as well as presentations from and endorsements of Civil Court and District Leader candidates. Following is the agenda: I. President’s Report
II. District Leader’s Report–Keen Berger
III. Special Forum: Fracking and Gas Pipeline Infrastructure
Panelists: Clare Donohue, Sane Energy Project
Eric Weltman, Food & Water Watch in New York
Ling Tsou, United for Action
Assemblywoman Linda B. Rosenthal, Status of the Port Ambrose LNG
IV. Update on Saving Small Business Petitioning–Sharon Woolums
V. Update on Gala–Jen Hoppe
VI. Presention by Civil Court Judge Candidates (See election protocol for all candidates below)
VII. Endorsement of Civil Court Judge Candidates
VIII. Presentation by District Leader Candidates
IX. Endorsement of District Leader Candidates.
X. Election of VID’s Judicial Delegates and Alternates
XI. New Business
Village Independent Democrats
Eligibility to vote and/or be a candidate:
a- Must be a VID member for 90 days
b- Dues must be up to date
c- If your dues have expired, you can pay back dues in order to vote. However, per VID constitution you can only pay back dues for one year and one month. Therefore, anybody who’s dues expired before April 14, 2014 is not eligible to vote.Election Protocol:
Each candidate can speak for up to 5 minutes
Each candidate will take questions from VID members for up to 5 minutes
VID members are allocated up to 5 minutes speak on behalf of a candidate. No member can speak for more than one minute unless nobody else wishes to speak.
A candidate must get a majority of the votes cast in order to get the VID endorsement. In case no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast on the first ballot and there are only two candidates on the ballot then no endorsement is the position of the club. If there are more than two candidates then there is one more ballot with the two top vote getters staying on the ballot. If no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast on the second ballot then the position of the club is no endorsement.
Same rules as for Civil Court candidates with the exception that the candidates only receive three minutes each to speak.
Judicial Delegates and Alternate Judicial Delegates
Each candidate receives 1 minute to speak
VID members have five minutes to as candidates questions
The candidates who receive the most votes are elected to represent VID on the ballot as judicial delegates. The candidates who receive the next highest number of votes become the alternate judicial delegates.
Once again Frieda Bradlow hosted Happy Holidays from VID
…to just about anyone known in Village political circles. The food overflowed, libations were plentiful, all sorts of scuttlebutt got exchanged and the spirits of Democrats were well-lifted.
Councilman Corey Johnson and Borough President Gale Brewer came and left early with no fewer than seven other celebrations to cram into December 7th. Senator Brad Hoylman gave warm wishes to everyone before he dashed off to save the Cafe Edison with Richard Gottfried, Corey Johnson, Gale A. Brewer and Peter Ajemian. Assemblymember Deborah Glick maintained her perfect record attendance at VID holiday bashes. Judges Arlene Bluth and Robert Reed, District Leaders Jean Grillo and Paul Newell added Village and Lower Manhattan cheer to the event.
Charter schools, public schools, parental and community schools all got lots of attention at VID’s General Membership Meeting on November 13. Discussions about public funding (they all are publicly funded), parent and community involvement (a must) and Department of Education bureaucracy (usually a detriment to quick action and cheaper materials) was enlightening.
One of most contentious issues was the inequality between charter and non-charter public schools over additional funding and extra resources. Many argued, also, that co-location of schools in the same building often leads to reduced space for non-charters and a sense of unfairness to students. Questions of student selection and teacher retention were also brought up.
An uplifting part of the discussion was a realization that the problems are not insurmountable. All along the education spectrum, leaders have begun to work together, hoping to share what works and to improve what is failing. It takes a huge leap of faith on all fronts, but the future of our students depends on it.