Board Meeting Minutes

Davis Democrat Club Meeting May 11, 2004

This meeting was held at the home of Betty Weir.
Present (15 members total) were:
President: Tony Gruska,
Vice President: Kingsley Melton
Treasurer: Betty Weir
Recording Secretary: G Richard Yamagata
Past President: Stephen Souza, not able to make meetings at this time
Newsletter Editor: Anais Vayssieres
Board members: Mary Lou Hernandez, Julia Sanchez, Joyce Wilson, Adrienne Kandell, Susan Peter-Thompson, Bob Bockwinkel, Mike Syvanen, Barbara Slemmons, Jim Pollock, and Scott Lay.

Guests: John Flynn, John Chendo, Lyle Smith, Judy Lary; Rhonda Gruska, Dan Kehew, please note the Campus Democrats were once again missing from this meeting. They are on the e-mailing list, so have been noticed via e-mail of the meetings.

Tony called the meeting to order at 7:04 PM.

The minutes from the April Meeting were moved forward for a vote by Bob Bockwinkel and were seconded by Mary Lou Hernandez with no revisions. The motion carried unanimously.

Tony Gruska once again commented about the Woodland Democrat Club. No Action was required nor taken on this subject. It was moved that we voice our support for the Woodland club as the Davis Democrat Club. No vote was taken on this item.

The following people introduced themselves and were considered for induction onto the Democrat Club board of directors: Dan Kehew, Rhonda Gruska, John Chendo, and Lyle Smith. (John Flynn will be considered at a future meeting, if he so desires.)

Dan Kehew is a recent graduate of King Hall law school. He has been a long time Democrat.

Rhonda Gruska is the wife of President, Tony Gruska. She has been a long time Democrat and has attended both the district party caucasus and county central committee meetings.

John Chendo is a long time Democrat and resident of Davis (over 20 years). He is a co-sponsor with Betty and Barbara of the Kerry fundraiser to be held on Friday, May 21 as part of the national collection of Kerry fundraisers to be held that weekend. Lyle Smith re- introduced himself and told all present his experience and his volunteer work for the Democratic Party. His long list included working for the 21st Century Democrats in Colorado Springs and in Louisiana.

Barbara Slemmons made the motion that the Davis Democrat Club accept all four of these people to the Board of Directors. Bob Bockwinkel seconded the motion. The motion carried unaminously. It was noted that this should be reported with an article about the four new members of the board, so that the general membership of the club be given notice of these new appointees. The motion was made by Adrienne and seconded by Mike Syvanen. No vote was taken on this motion.

Betty announce that there was no change in the treasury this month. She recently wrote one check, which had not yet cleared the bank. It was announced that $7,268.65 was in the club’s checking account. We have a total of $12,127.85, the balance of which is in certificates of deposit (CDs). Betty wrote a check for the first and last month’s rent with deposit for the headquarters at 5th and L Street.

It was noted at this time that at the last Beat Bush 2004 function, 100 people turned out and about $4000 was raised.

Tony Gruska reported that the phone lines deposit and PG & E deposit needed to be paid for the headquarters. A sum of $3200 is needed for both of these initial costs. Adrienne Kandell made the motion that the club supply the funds to open the headquarters. John Chendo seconded. There was discussion as follows:

Scott Lay explained that the Yolo County Central committee has $4000 in their treasury, which cannot be used for opening and running a campaign headquarters. This money is basically poisoned fruit, because of the Federal election campaign laws. Bob stated that there should be no problem for the club to locally fund the headquarters. The club will in any event have to pay for the rent on the campaign headquarters. The whole purpose of the headquarters opening in June is to get phones in place and get pledges of money flowing into the club.

Scott further stated and explained that the Federal campaign laws only allow for personal donations be made. No company or business checks are to be deposited to the accounts or the accounts will be at that point, once again poisoned fruit. The money raised needs to go into the Beat Bush fund, a clean account. This will be in compliance with the Federal campaign guidelines.

Susan Peter-Thompson then asked how specifically is the club going to support and help Lois Wolk, Mike Machado, Barbara Boxer and Mike Thompson. The answer to her question was that Beat Bush 2004 will raise the money to open the headquarters and to staff it with volunteers and provide the phone banking in the headquarters and to organize volunteers campaign workers in Nevada. This group is a way to organize people and to motivate people and all efforts will be unified under the umbrella – Beat Bush 2004.

The motion was made by Adrienne that the club support the group by donating $100.

Mike Syvanen made the motion that the Davis Democrat Club would support and donate resources to Bush 2004, but was not going to donate $1000. This was later refined to state that the Davis Democrat Club endorses Beat Bush 2004, but is not going to financially support the group with a donation. Betty Weir seconded this motion. There was not enough votes present to carry this motion.

In summary, it was pointed out that the group did not have officers, the group did not have a treasurer to take the money from the club, that the group was only a steering committee and was yet to have its first meeting. Also, there was the fact that this group was suppose to bring in elements that support the Beat Bush idea and yet could not or would not embrace the Democrat party or Kerry. There is a major problem in this if the group is slated to raise money and send it to the Kerry campaign.

Mike Syvanen pointed out that the polls show that Kerry will win California and there should be no problem for us to raise the funds necessary for our present needs. It was pointed out that part of the money will be used to fund the campaign workers in Nevada. But Mike then pointed out that it was stated that all the money raised locally was suppose to be spent locally. It was also stated that the club money should not be involved in that out of state organization of volunteers. Andrea Jones stated that phase would not be done until well later in the election cycle. She once again stated how this group was needed to bring in the Greens and disillusioned Republicans and the independents to donate money.

At this point in time Bob Bockwinkel withdrew his support for the motion to donate $1000 from the club to Beat Bush 2004.

The motion was made by Betty Weir that the Davis Democrat Club supports and endorses Beat Bush 2004. This motion was seconded by Adrienne and passed 7 to 1.

Tony Gruska called the group to order to discuss the Champagne Brunch. The event will be on June 6 at the Cook’s home. The list of speakers has yet to be finalized, but the Kerry representative from Sacramento has been lined up to speak. The invitations need to be printed out and Tony will contact Stephen Souza to get the template.

Bob Bockwinkel will pick up the champagne and the champagne glasses from Valley Winery. Scott Lay will serve the champagne. Julia committed to bringing fruit and cheese. Mike Syvanen committed to bringing a roast beef.

The Brunch will be from 11:30AM to 2PM. Speakers will begin at 12:30 PM. The cost will be $15/person and $30/couple and $5 for students.

No representative from the campus Democrats was present at this meeting, therefore no report was given for the second month in a row.
Bob Bockwinkel spoke on behalf of his daughter, representing the Davis High School Democrat club.

It was announced that on June 27th, Mike Thompson was going to have a fundraiser at the River Cats game. Mike Syvanen made the mostion that the club endorse and support this event. The motion was seconded by Adrienne. The motion carried 8 to 0.

Adrienne stated that this fundraiser would run in the newsletter and she had an article concerning Bush’s economic advisor. At this point in time, it was asked, should the club include the treasurer’s report in the newsletter. It was stated that the treasurer’s report needed to stated in context – how much money it takes to open a campaign headquarters and keep the doors open. Betty said that she could attempt to do this.

Susan said that she would write an article and submit it, based upon a suggestion by Bob Bockwinkel.

It was stated that elected Democrat office holders would be contacted and invited to submit material for the next newsletter. The date of the next Beat Bush 2004! Event would be stated and an article about the group would be submitted to the newsletter.

The 5th and L Street location is still vacant. It was stated that first and last month’s rent and the deposit will cost $6000. This does not include opening of the phone bank. At this point in time, Susan suggested that we use cell phones to help off set the cost of the phone banks, because of unused minutes that some people have on their phones. Adrienne mildly stated her objection to this. There was no motion made to follow up on this suggestion.

It was once again stated that a letter needs to be written asking for donations to open the campaign headquarters. Adrienne volunteered to write such a letter. Tony will edit the letter and his name will appear on the letter. Tony will also help Betty with the addressing of the letters (labels) and in the mailing of the letters.

The Beat Bush 2004 organizing meeting was brought up again. All present at the board meeting were invited to attend the specifics were in the flyer passed out at the meeting and had been posted at the web site (on homepage in April, now modified to advertise the May meeting).

This topic was started by Tony Gruska, who announced that he had read the by-laws. The by-laws state that the club will publicize the elections and that candidates for the offices will be announced 30 days before the election.

The motion was made that the by-laws be amended to read – candidates will be nominated 30 days before the election. This motion was not seconded.

Andrea as part of the discussion stated that under the current by-laws, the club could be taken over by Greens or even by Republicans that attend the meeting, pay their dues, then elect their chosen candidates from the floor. Bob Bockwinkel stated that people need to pay their dues and he felt that these people would be unwilling to spend the money to do this. There was mumbling that the student dues are too low and they are allowed to vote. There was once again discussion as to who would check the credentials of people if the club started enforcing changes to the by-laws (political party registration, student status, etc.).

In interest of moving the meeting along, Bob Bockwinkel made the motion that those people interested in changing the by-laws commit to meeting and writing changes to the by-laws and presenting them to board. Any change must pass with 75% of the board vote. Mike Syvanen and Betty Weir said that they would serve on this committee. Mike Syvanen seconded the motion. The motion carried 8 to 0. It was stated that the changes in the by-laws would be announced to the club membership in the next issue of the newsletter, following the adoption of the changes.

Adrienne announced that the local chapter of Move-On.Org was going to have a bake sale in Central Park, during the upcoming Farmer’s Market on Saturday morning. This was sent to Adrienne with a request for help. Mike Syvanen made the mostion that we endorse and help this fundraising effort. Bob Bockwinkel seconded the motion and it passed 8 to 0. Phone numbers were given to and passed out by Tony to facilitate logistical support for the Move-On bake sale booth. Susan has the club canopy and Stephen has the club table.

At this point in time, Tony moved to adjourn the meeting and the motion was seconded. The motion under discussion made it possible for guest, Lyle Smith, to introduce himself and tell all present his experience and his volunteer work for the Democratic Party. His long list included working for the 21st Century Democrats in Colorado Springs and in Louisiana. He is a person interested in working with the club during this Fall election cycle.

Bob made a new motion for adjournment, which was seconded by Mike Syvanen. The meeting adjourned at 8:58PM.

These minutes are respectfully submitted by:

      G Richard Yamagata

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updated by
G.Richard Yamagata. Last updated: April, 2004

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