Jan. 11 General Meeting Report

Minutes: Dem mtng , 12 Tribes, Omak, 1/11/20

1. Call to order with Susan Swanson, interim Chair, 12:13. Twisp satellite in operation.
2. Moment of Silence
3. Agenda adoption...change line 13 to below #6 reordering agenda order.
4. Roll call 14 signed /Omak, 4 PCOs, 5 E-board members, Twisp 7 E-board members, 3 PCOS. 10 new folks attended this meeting.
5. Minutes adopted unanimously
6. Words of Encouragement from Susan: “How many watch the credits of a movie? There is a cast of hundreds needed to pull off that production” and that is why we are here. There are many opportunities for participation...some E-board elections, but also other ways (being a PCO, creative thinking for fund raising or recognition, helping with booths at the County Fair or Stampede, parades, etc.)
State Conference in Vancouver, WA, Jan 31-Feb 2. Joint 7th @ 12th meeting in .
7. Special Elections: Outgoing Executive Board Members: Michael Sarratt (Chair), Susan Swanson (1st Vice Chair), Tom Cloud (Treasurer), Valerie Sarratt (Secretary).
• Chair: nominees: Kirsten Williams for Chair. Sandy Vaughn nominated, Tom Cloud 2nd. 8 PCOs voted unanimously.
• Kirsten Williams is the new Chair of Okanogan County Democrats. 1st Vice chair: Daniel Harn nominated by Michael Clark, 2nd Sandy Vaughn. Danial gave a very enthusiastic and inspiring talk on why he is interested in participating. 5 PCOs, here, 2 in Twisp.
• Daniel Harn. New Vice-Chair.
• Secretary: Sandy Vaughn appointed interim.
• Treasurer: Suz Levis appointed. Suz has a 4 yr degree in accounting, 7 as auditor and 14 yrs as finance director for a small municipality.
• Tom Cloud resigns as Treasurer today as new appt stands.
8. Guest speaker Bobbi Hackett “How to Map Our Common Story and Tell our Personal Stories so that we can Restore Health and Happiness to our Political Conversations.” storyboard. A timely and useful presentation, using the Constitution as our basis for conversation with others.
9. Grant received for the purchase and use of AV satellite equipment ...using equipment in accordance with Randy Michaelis of 12th district
10. New Business: Andy Jones collaboration and building bridges.
• We (Dems) can support the common good. We are a party with a really wide tent.
• Sandy: letter writing group being formed to counter Republican talking points in local papers.
• Michael Serratt: had a meeting with Kit Arbuckle (former Rep. chair)...there are GOPs who have a low opinion of Trump. MS invited to speak at AP history and civics class on Dems, in Brewster. Fund raiser coming up.
• Larry Witt can we have a white board or a reader so written materials are more accessible to members.
11. Reports:
• 7th Vice Chair: PCO building, ecology scholarship benefit, letter writing group.
• VC 12th: absent
• VC Technology: absent
• Outgoing Treasurer: we run on donations and membership. We have cards here for donations. We need to report to Public Disclosures Office, all donations. 2019, our balance is $1789.89 we need a plan now for strategizing how we are going to elect Democrats. Uses: booths at Stampede, County Fair, pay for our meeting room. Treasurer job is to report financial news. It is everybody’s ideas on how to get Dems elected. We need a committee for budgeting for future needs, and a Fundraising committee. Susan Swanson...now that we are doing Full Reporting we can do a full scale benefit. If we spend less than $5000, we don’t report to Public Disclosure Commission, once we go over that we have to report within 5 days, and mail that info in every Monday. Michael Sarratt: we have more money coming in, we will need to purchase AV equipment (budget item)...some one will need to take the lead on the equipment purchase. Mar and Katie are working on that.
• State Committee Member: Kirsten. Meet 3 times/yr. we have committees that we participate. We present new resolutions, and elect the state Chair and DNC members. We are actively seeking a new person for that role.
• State Committee Member: Michael Clarke: Resolutions- we formulate resolutions to bring attention to things, and build on ideas from individual and groups. We need a way to gather input from members about these resolutions in a timely manner. We didn’t get to resolutions at last meeting (Attachment of resolutions). We need to co spider these dates when we schedule our local Dem meetings so we can have input on this.
• Ag and rural caucus Representative: absent
• Regional Coordinator: Katie Haven (she is now running for CC) (she sent a written report, see attachment) major issues revolve around 1) water, especially related to the Hirst decision. BOCC refuses collaboration. Public left with fallout. 2) regional planning commission...reviewing now. 3)Interviews for new planning director. Okanogan Watch needs some help. Mass texting for notifications of meeting would be useful.
• Community Outreach Coordinator: absent
13. Good of the Order Announcement (local events we need to be aware of: see under new business
14. Adjournment...motion to adjourn: Bobbi , Tom Cloud 2nd. Adjourned 2:20.

Notes from Vice-chair for Local Affairs

  1. The major issues at the County right now revolve around water, particularly the fallout from the Hirst decision. Due to lawsuits filed as a result of a poorly written Comprehensive Plan, the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) have reacted by issuing an Ordinance 2019-11 (attached). The ordinance essentially shuts down subdivision of land in the Methow Watershed, with a few exceptions.  The BOCC arrived at this decision without any input from the Methow Watershed Council, which is the advisory group that has deep expertise and experience in the subject of water.  In my opinion, this is just one more example of how our BOCC refuses to engage in collaborative problem-solving.  Instead, they make decisions in private, with very little public input or consultation with experts.  The public is then left to manage the fallout.

This could have all been avoided if the BOCC had engaged in thoughtful, inclusive policy making over the past several years rather than resisting the changes that they knew were coming.

  1. The Regional Planning Commission is still in the process of reviewing the Comprehensive Plan. This is a public process, and they meet the 4th Monday of every month at 6 pm in the Commissioners hearing room. When they have finished with their review/revisions, they will send it to the BOCC for approval.  There will be more opportunities for public comment during this process.
  2. The interviews for hiring a new Planning Director have been completed. There is no word yet on who has been selected.

Okanogan County Watch is still attending BOCC meetings, but since I have stepped down to run for office, they are short handed.  If anyone is interested in helping out a few hours per month on a Monday please contact Katie Haven at krhaven@seanet.com, or at 206-604-2218.

If anyone wants to stay up to date on what’s going on at the County, notes and videos are posted at www.countywatch.org.

New Business

I would like to see OK Dems use technology to remind people about meetings and events.  Mass texting (SMS) is becoming the standard for this type of communication.  There are many services to choose from.

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