KCDCC Meeting Notes

KCDCC Meeting Notes January 2017

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For the first KCDCC meeting of the new elected delegates and chairs from each LD in King County, Chair Bailey Stover decided to make it more about getting acquainted. All new delegates stood up at the beginning and seemed to be more than half of the room. He took the time to go through each newly appointed member of the Executive Board of the King County Central Committee, including Chair, Vice Chairs and all of the committee chairs. Each person was allowed time to introduce themselves and provide an idea of what their committee’s objective will be and to ask for volunteers. Although each of these positions is listed on the website, it was very helpful to put faces with names and to hear more about their goals.

Bailey shared that he is 52 days into his term and that during that time he has had significant challenges. In fact, in his first 24 hours he was faced with a lawsuit and a restraining order! During the first two months, he has been busy overseeing reorganization meetings, the final 17 of which finished up last week. There are a lot of new people in positions throughout the county. Bailey also gave an update that there are about 1135 PCOs in the county and that about a third of them have reached out to him directly since the reorganization. The overall feeling is that people are ready to help and looking for direction.

We approved a temporary operating budget that will be in place until March and includes funds for logo and web design.

Cat Williams, First Vice Chair, shared the events she is working on producing throughout the year, starting with a Committee event called “February Action Kickoff” that will allow an opportunity for volunteers to find a committee that suits the ways in which they would like to participate. The date has not yet been set for this event, but will be decided upon soon and information will be available on the website.

The LAC Co-Chairs invited everyone to participate in Lobby Day in Olympia on February 20th – information will be available on the KCDCC website for this, as well. They also provided a 2017 Legislative Agenda handout.

Two Republican State Senators and one former Senator have accepted positions in the Trump administration, leaving 2 positions open.

The committee voted to endorse Keith Ellison for DNC chair by 2/3 vote.

Chad Lupkes, Training Committee Chair, is scheduling PCO training and other training opportunities throughout the year. PCO training is February 4th 1-4pm, details on website.

Two candidates for City  Woodinville spoke, Paula Waters and Susan Sanders.

Brian Gunn, 31st LD Chair, spoke about winning a seat in the senate in the special election and is looking for donations and volunteers to help democratic candidates.



KCDCC Meeting Notes for November 22, 2016

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By Martha Koester and Steve Butts

Robert Dickinson of the Sound Alliance (a coalition of labor, environmental and other organizations) has set up another coalition All In For Washington, dedicated to raising state revenue to fully fund education without sustaining cuts to other essential services. Their current efforts are devoted to enacting a capital gains tax (WA State is one of only nine states not to have one) which would apply to earnings over $50K, with income from a sale of a primary residence exempted. The B&O tax is highly regressive, penalizing small businesses the most, as is the sales tax. See http://www.allinforwa.org/ for more information.

Rich Erwin congratulated all of the people who helped with voter contact. We won two house seats in the 30th LD and a senate seat in the 41st LD, retained our senate seat in the 5th LD and came close in the house races. The KCDCC reorganization will take place on December 5th at the South Park Machinists Hall. Rich is running for reelection. He requested help for running the meetings which will be necessary to replace our legislators in the 43rd, the 37th and the 48th LDs.

Mary Wirta thanked all who participated in PCO and VoteBuilder use trainings this year, and brought some food to share in their honor.

The WSDCC reorganization will take place the last weekend of January. Ann Martin is running for her position again. Javier Valdez has stepped down after serving in this position for 16 years. Chad Lupkes of the 46th LD announced his intention to run for the position.

The Resolutions Committee presented a Resolution of Opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline and Resolution Supporting the Protection of Standing Rock Sioux Lands. Both were passes, the latter with minor modifications.

The Elections Committee reported a big increase in the number of qualified elections observers. We now have 57, and still more people want to take the training that will be offered in January. There were more than a million ballots cast in King County this year.

The Legislative Action Committee sought approval by the body of its 2017 legislative agenda (available at https://www.kcdems.org/tag/draft-2017-legislative-agenda/. This embodies some changes from 2016, removing items that were passed as legislation with some additions. The agenda was approved with minor modification. Lobby Day will be over Presidents Day as usual. After the first of the year, the committee will submit an amended agenda with actual bill numbers attached.

The Finance Committee reported that we raised $78K this year.

The treasurer reported a balance of $6700, after candidate expenditures. These went over the $25K limit due to last minute donations by the trial lawyers to support Justice Wiggins. A resolution to amend the approval process to deal with such emergencies in the future passed unanimously.

Under new business, it was proposed that we send a message to the Clinton campaign to challenge the vote count in MI, WI and PA. This passed unanimously.

KCDCC Meeting Notes for October 25, 2016

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By Steve Butts and Martha Koester

Rich Irwin launched into the chair’s report, as there were none of the usual campaign updates by candidates or their representatives. “Keep going” was his message, as Democrats find themselves in a great position to make gains this year. He also informed us that the KC Democrats reorganization will be 12pm Sunday, Dec. 4th at the Aerospace Machinists Hall in South Park.

The first item of business was the election of a new First Vice Chair. Cat Williams, the Female KCDCC Representative from the 45th LD, was nominated and elected. She brings her experience as an events manager, and will seek to expand the donor base and to propose additional fundraising events.

Sara Franklin had proposed several days prior to the meeting that we consider rescinding our endorsement of Erin Jones, candidate for Superintendant of Public Instruction. Jones had been given donations from a backer of Tim Eyman. Upon request, Jones returned the money and Sara withdrew her proposal.

We adapted the proposed agenda for the King County Democrats reorganization, and a recommended agenda could be used for the various legislative district reorganizational meetings. There was a motion for a requirement that KCDCC officer candidates submit a written statement prior to the election, but it was defeated. Later in the meeting we voted to establish a committee to recruit candidates to assure that all offices will be filled.

Renton City Council is to be soon voting on an ordinance to ban income-based eviction of renters. This move is in reaction to recent evictions of Section 8 housing recipients at a large apartment complex in the city. We approved an emergency resolution in support.

The state legislative session begins on January 9th. The Executive Board will need to approve the legislative action agenda for 2017 at our November 22 meeting. Prior to that, the LAC committee must finalize that plan at their November 20 meeting. It will take place at the Renton Highlands Library at 2 pm. Input is requested.

We discussed our campaign donations. At the September meeting, we agreed to spend up to $7,000 on a media buy to reach out to under-represented communities. During a tele-meeting on October 16 we voted to spend an additional $5,250 on this effort. We also voted to allow the Chair to spend up to $5,000 on Mark Mullet’s campaign, $20.000 for Jason Ritchie (a special 21-day rule applies) and $500 each to Kristine Reeves, Darcy Burner and Jason Ritchie. At the meeting, we agreed to add $2,500 to the amount for Jason Ritchie, as additional money has been received.

Good of the Order announcements included a big GOTV push in the 30th LD October 29 featuring Gov. Inslee, Sen. Patty Murray and Tina Podlowoski. Mike Pellicciotti and Kristine Reeves have both received the endorsement of Barak Obama.

There will be an election night party at The Berliner Pub in Renton. People from the South King County LDs are invited.

Congratulations to the 37th LD: They have filled all of their PCO slots.

KCDCC Meeting Notes for September 27, 2016

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By Martha Koester and Steve Butts

The meeting was called to order and the agenda approved. Representatives the campaigns of Patty Murray and Suzan DelBene gave brief updates. Bob Eugene is running for County Commissioner of Pend Oreille County. He said that it would be most helpful if Democrats from western Washington gave more support to those in eastern Washington so that Democrats could establish more of a presence there. http://www.electbobeugene.com/

Rich Irwin gave the chair’s report, discussion 88,000 emails that he had sent out to caucus attendees, and asked that people volunteer to be elections observers. He requested up to $7,000 to support media outreach to underserved communities. This was approved unanimously. There will be a teleconference on October 18th to approve dispensing money to candidates received through the email outreach.

Andrew Villeneuve reported on the Joint Legislative Task Force, a group of Democrats from King and Pierce Counties focused on recruiting and supporting candidates in likely legislative districts to regain control of the senate and expand our majority in the house. We will focus on the swing districts of the 41st and the 5th LDs.

Endorsements were made on a number of local bond issues and initiatives. Guy Palumbo was endorsed as the state senate candidate from the 1st LD. For a full list, see the King County Democrats website. https://www.kcdems.org/endorsements/ The endorsement for the Sound Transit initiative was pulled for further discussion. Opponents mentioned the Smart Transit group’s point that there will not be enough new ridership gained and that rail is an expensive way to move people. Proponents argued that we have to prepare for regional growth, that rail has less carbon emission, and that the package includes more bus rapid transit routes. The motion to endorse passed 34 to 9.

Ann and Javier reported on the state central committee meeting in Yakima. Three resolutions passed by King County were approved by the state. There was a charter amendment passed allowing the Rules Committee to review proposed charter amendments for impact, so that representatives can understand them better before voting. Jaxon Ravens wants to set up a committee to review to option of having primaries rather than caucuses.

No new resolutions were submitted. Joel and Dean requested that we send any proposals to the King County Democrats Bylaws Committee as soon as possible.

Steve Zemke reported on the last LAC meeting featuring former state representative Marcie Maxwell. She wants people to know that the odds of the legislature acting on anything are greatly affected by how many constituents contact them. There have been zero to 20 contacts per week on education, as opposed to more than 3,000 on oil trains. The next meeting will be October 16th, location TBD.

Nancy Podschwit was elected as the new treasurer. Sara Franklin of Community Outreach requested that we focus on improving relationships with underserved communities as on ongoing effort, not just in presidential election years.

Ginamarie of the DisAbilities Committee reported that many medical marijuana users were negatively impacted by folding medical and recreational use together, making it harder for her to get the pure Indica strains that she needs. We should fix this during the next legislative session.

Omaha Sternberg proposed rescinding her earlier resignation as 1st Vice Chair, but this is actually not relevant, as whether or not the resignation is official, she is entitled to run for the office again in October.

Meeting adjourned at 9:45pm.

KCDCC Meeting Notes for August 23, 2016

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By Steve Butts and Martha Koester

The meeting began at 7:15 pm. As often is the case, the agenda was amended to allow for unscheduled speakers: Hanna Pickett, Jay Inslee’s Field Organizer, expressed thanks for our support during the primary campaign. A representative from Patty Murray’s reelection staff extolled the virtues of the Coordinated Campaign, and its support of the down-ballot races. Both campaigns are looking to expand their volunteer base. Cathy Moore, running for KC Superior Court Pos. 44, thanked the body for their endorsement. While not endorsed by the KCDCC, Jesse Wineberry addressed us near meeting’s end to thank the Democrats who helped him during his primary bid for Representative for WA-09. He has given his support to Adam Smith, and will use his influence in the district to help reelect him.

Rich Irwin’s chair report focused on the general election. He urged us to find 4 people that don’t vote and get them to do so, and to seek out volunteers to help make electoral gains this year. He has contact information for the 110,000 precinct caucus attendees, and will reach out to them.

We were to have pro/con presentations on both initiatives I-1491 (Extreme Risk Protection Orders) and I-732 (Carbon Pollution Tax). The pro I-1491 representative was unable to attend, but we proceeded with the vote. I-1491 failed to be endorsed. A second vote to recommend a “Vote NO” was also rejected.

We heard the pro I-732 position from Greg Rock, a lobbyist from Carbon WA, and the ANTI position from Jeff Johnson, President of the WA State Labor Council. While both speakers support the goal of lowering carbon emissions, they differed on potential state tax losses that I-732 may create, and the initiative’s ability to bring clean energy alternatives to market. A vote to endorse failed, as did the proposal for a “Vote NO” recommendation.

Candidate endorsements began with a vote on slate of the Endorsement Committee’s recommended candidates. State Representatives endorsed in this manner were: Zack Hudgins (11th), Mike Pellicciotti (30th), Cindy Ryu (32nd), Mia Su-ling Gregerson (33rd), Gael Tarleton (36th), Linda Wright (39th) and Brooke Valentine from the 47th LD.

Pat McCarthy, running for State Auditor, sought our endorsement as our previously-endorsed candidate, Jeff Sprung, failed to clear the primary. She received our endorsement.

US Representative candidates Brady Walkinshaw (CD 07) and Tony Ventrella (CD 08) were put forward. Neither received endorsement. Chris Reykdal (Superintendent for Public Instruction), and Kristin Richardson (KC Superior Court Pos. 52) also failed to reach the endorsement threshold.

Four resolutions were considered and approved: A resolution supporting a “Maintained” vote on taxes for State Advisory Votes 14 and 15, a resolution supporting an “Approved” vote on SJR 8210 to extend study and comment time for future Redistricting Committees, and a resolution to allow those of “non-binary gender” (not male or female) to replace either a male or female representative to the State Central Committee and in convention delegations. These were passed, and will be presented to the WA State Democratic Central Committee. Also passed was a resolution to the Seattle City Council, asking them to put forth a developer impact fee ordinance, the proceeds of which would be used for Seattle pubic school construction.

The Finance and Development report informed us that our Treasurer has resigned for personal reasons. Omaha Sternberg will serve in this office temporarily until a replacement can be recruited. Omaha also told us that the transition from NGP to Action Network has been completed, saving the KC Democrats. She will also be attempting to negotiate a better insurance contract for next year.

The LAC last met on Mercer Island August 21, and featured Patty Kuderer and Marilyn Chase. The next meeting date and location is to be determined.