Board Meeting, Minutes - July 20th, 2008

Chippewa Valley Civil Liberties Union

Board Meeting Minutes for 7.20.2008

David Rice office, Eau Claire

Present: Jeremy Gragert, Ann Heywood, Corey Hilber (newly appointed), Mildred Larson, Bob Nowlan, Nicholas Passell, David Rice

Absent: Myron Buchholz, Geri Segal

Jeremy called the meeting to order at 6.44 p.m.

Ann suggested adding forming a Nominating Committee to the agenda.

The minutes were approved as previously distributed.

Nick distributed the treasurer’s report. We have no changes since last time: a balance of $338.82 in the checking account, and $5.01 in the savings account.

Jeremy formally announced his resignation from the board and as president, effective when he leaves for graduate studies in LaCrosse, approximately mid-August. The board congratulated him on his accomplishments as president and thanked him for his service. The board discussed handing over duties to Vice-President David Rice. Corey also advised the board that his service will extend only to December or January when he will join the Peace Corps. Jeremy appointed a Nominating Committee (Myron, Mildred, and Ann) to find candidates for the board. Ann noted the goal of choosing candidates to add diversity on the board if at all possible.

The board discussed finding liaisons in Chippewa Falls and Menomonie. So far Jeremy has made no contacts. A new member in Chippewa Falls has contacted Jeremy but he was not enlisted as a liaison for the board. We decided that the best way to find willing liaisons outside of Eau Claire will be to put a notice into the annual newsletter and to ask for volunteers at the annual meeting. Those people may wish to help define the position.

The CVCLU website is functioning well; no updates.

The board discussed a complaint/request for help from a Chippewa County man who reported problems and alleged crimes concerning a fraudulent polling phone call, voter registration irregularities, poll worker selection problems, blackmail, physical menace, and jury tampering. Since all of the problems related to elected officials, discussion first focused on using the political process to replace the offenders or at least bring them to accountability. David suggested the complainant call the judge to ask about the progress of the judicial inquiry he promised since that inquiry properly would begin soon after the promise to do so. David also pointed out that the complainant has several other places to register complaint, namely, the Attorney General of Wisconsin, and the Board of Judicial Responsibility and the Board of Lawyer Responsibility in Madison. The complainant may persuade other citizens to file their complaints as well to build a case. Mildred proposed writing an email to the Chippewa County Clerk to ask about procedures used in the county, including asking about lists submitted by the Democratic and Republican Parties for poll workers, and checking on their compliance with Wisconsin statute 7.30. (This effort will complement our plans for a fall program related to election problems.) She will draft the email; Jeremy will also help.

Corey reported on the ACLU National Conference in Washington, D.C. He went on bus with other students, enjoyed the conference, lobbied Congressman Kind about FISA and Guantanamo, and brought back many booklets and brochures related to civil liberties. He plans to use those materials as he approaches other campus organizations about partnering in civil liberties causes. He also will be well prepared for an ACLUSA organizational meeting early this fall. Jeremy and Corey will write a letter (from the ACLUSA) to the chancellor pointing out past election problems and asking for plans to avoid them.

The board discussed ideas for a fall program on election issues. After concerns that we have too few specific ideas and speakers and too little time to organize well, we simplified the basic plan to a more traditional presentation of four or five speakers, each on a different election issue. Mildred offered to take responsibility for the topic of ex-felon enfranchisement. Further planning will proceed at a special board meeting on August 11, 11;45 a.m. at the Grand Avenue Cafe. Ann will make reservations.

Ann reported that Erik Guenther, ACLU-WI president, will make a presentation on the Bill of Rights at the NWEA Convention on October 8. She suggested that Corey may want to contact Erik about a presentation at UWEC later that day.

Ann and Mildred reported their valiant but unsuccessful effort to battle traffic in flooded Southern Wisconsin and attend the June state board meeting.

The next regular board meeting was set for September 14 at 6:30 at the Rice office.

Respectfully submitted,

Ann Heywood, secretary