Minutes of the 34th District Democrats Board Meeting
October 18, 2023, held virtually on Zoom.
Graham Murphy, Rachel Glass, Jordan Crawley, Ted Barker, Bunny Hatcher, Chris Porter, Julie Whitaker, Steve Butts, Hannah Cameron, and Rebecca Rego.
7:06 pm – Call to Order by Chair Graham Murphy
- The agenda was reviewed and approved without objection.
- Minutes from the June board meeting were presented and were approved without objection.
December Service Project – Rachel Glass
- Rachel reported that she is interested in pairing with the organization Stephanie’s Lifeline for our annual service project. She was to have a meeting with the Executive Director the following day to discuss a possible collaboration.
- She will hold a Zoom meeting with those who have volunteered to help.
Annual Awards – Chris Porter
- Nominations were starting to come in through the online Google form. There were 7 as of the meeting.
- Reminders will be sent out via weekly emails.
- Hannah Cameron asked if more description of the various categories could be provided for newer members. Chris will post short descriptions in Slack.
- Discussion about award types ranged from glass pieces to honey and jam preserves as alternates for awardees to choose from.
- Graham had been looking for a space for the November year-end party. The Masonic Temple appeared to be the best choice to date. He posted a link for day-of volunteers.
State Party Report – Ted Barker
- State Party Meeting was September 29 and 30 in Spokane
- Senate Majority Leader Andy Billig spoke about the legislative progress the state has made since the Democrats have been in charge. He noted that Spokane is a Blue dot in Red Eastern Washington. He also pointed to the fact that the 3rd LD has the lowest median income of any LD in the state.
- The state party has been reorganized and some of the intermediate links in the organizational chain have been eliminated allowing more direct reporting to Chair Shasti Conrad.
- Fundraising records have been set; Shasti is an aggressive fundraiser, especially with asks to high-profile electeds.
- The party wishes to hire more local activists as organizers.
- DNC Member Javier Valdez reported that Washington has a representative on all major committees, only one of 18 such states.
- Resolutions were passed in support of these subjects:
- State Forest Carbon Sequestration
- Mature Forest Retention
- Rent Control
- A Wealth Tax
- A Ban on Corporate Stock Buybacks
Ted also spoke of comments made by a tribal member in Eastern Washington tangential to the Land Acknowledgement. He spoke of the high mortality rate among Native people and the lack of grandparents within those peoples. Chris Porter offered that we include history in our meeting statements, using the degradation of the Duwamish River into a Superfund Site as an example.
KCDCC Report – Bunny Hatcher and Chris Porter
- Bunny said that her report from the September KCDCC meeting was previously submitted to and published in the October newsletter. Her work was with the Endorsement Committee as they considered new candidates, primarily to fill General Election slots as some of KCDCC’s endorsees did not clear the Primary.
- Chair Murphy reported that the 34th has until the end of November to submit a letter regarding the rule that allows the KCDCC to endorse in races with jurisdictional overlap between LDs.
- Chris has been working on this issue.
- This is an issue for the 34th because a single precinct in Seattle Council District 1 falls outside the 34th LD, allowing the KCDCC to override our endorsement in that race. It is desired that this rule be altered to compel the KCDCC to accept endorsements of LDs when the overwhelming part of any district is within one LD.
- Ann Martin was to be recruited to help draft the letter.
October 21st Canvassing Event – Graham
- Doorbelling materials were to be available for PCOs and any who wish to canvass at C&P Coffee.
- Graham asked for volunteers to distribute door hangers to PCOs unable to attend. Nick Bonazza had already taken the material for Vashon Island. Steve Butts, Karen Richter, Hannah Cameron, and Chris Porter also volunteered.
Bylaws Review – Graham
- Any suggested changes to the Bylaws were to be given to Bylaws and Rules Committee Chair Jordan Crawley in time for a review before submission to the membership early in 2024.
- The Code of Conduct would also be re-examined for possible modifications to sanctions to allow for social justice solutions as alternatives to suspension or other punitive sanctions designed to punish inappropriate behavior.
Good of the Order
- Hannah rose to ask if there is any individual action that could be undertaken to help solve the frequent service disruption on the Vashon ferry run. Bunny responded that it is a persistent problem due to crew shortages. She suggested individuals contact lawmakers involved in transportation issues and ask them to provide for more funding.
- Graham expressed pleasure that the King County Council is looking at raising the minimum wage in the county.
- Rachel said that she can arrange for help with voting for anyone with sight issues. She noted that she recently provided the voice recording for an audio Voters Guide as part of her job.
- Chris mentioned that he had recently attended training at King County Elections to be an Election Observer. He said that some of the questions being asked during the class were conspiratorial in nature, laying doubt about our election system. Suspicions that our elections are subject to corruption are growing among some groups, and we need to be informed and ready to counteract this disinformation.