October 15, 2015, Seven Restaurant, Clovis, CA
Meeting: The meeting was called to order at 6:15 p.m., by President Jeni Kren. The Flag
Salute was led by Lew Pond. Jeni welcomed everyone and commented briefly on the events of the day.
Program: Jeni introduced Simone Cranston-Rhodes, Political Consultant. Ms. Cranston-Rhodes managed the Measure “G” Campaign which united Labor and Progressives to defeat Fresno Mayor’s bid to privatize trash collection. Only 801 votes made the difference proving that “We can do it if united”. She is presently working with the Fresno Unified Teachers on the 2016 Elections. The State is changing some of the way it funds schools. Average Daily Attendance (ADA) is a factor with new emphasis and funding being given to 1. the number of students in poverty, 2. English learners and 3. those in foster care. FUSD is the largest employer in Fresno, has 72, 000 students and is the 4th largest school district in the State. 84 % of the students live at poverty level and are English Language learners Under the new system funding will increase from $5,500 to $12.000 per student which means approximately a $280 million budget increase. The Teachers are proposing smaller class sizes, more student emotional and social support and more school security. In addition the Teachers are taking issue with the District in the present investigation involving school construction.
Jeni commented on the importance of our schools and that education in general has been going through some challenging times ie., student progress, social and political pressures and our national needs.
Minutes: The Minutes for September 17, 2015 were not available.
Treasurer’s Report: Lew Pond reported that the Club had a Balance on Sept 17 of $1603.15. Expenses totaled $73.70, leaving a Balance as of October 15, 2015 of $1554.45.
Membership Report: Judy Noteboom reported that the Club has 33 members. Dues paid now are good thru 2016. Also, our Club Web Site is a work in progress.
President’s Report: Jeni reported that she worked the Central Committee booth at the Fresno Fair. The Club purchased an ad in the combined program for the upcoming “Roast” of CC Chair Michael Evens and the FCDWC Eleanor Roosevelt Luncheon. The Club will have a “no cost” booth at the Democratic Rally/Celebration on October 31, at Radio Park, Fresno. She asked for volunteers.
Central Committee Report: Bob Jones reported that State Controller Betty Yee will be attending the “Roast” of Michael Evans. The Democratic Celebration Committee invited Lt. Governor Newsome to the event, but he had not confirmed.
U.S. Department of Peace Building: Jeff Rosendale reported on a proposal to establish a Cabinet Level Department of Peace Building. This has been an ongoing effortsince 2001. Motion by Jeff, second by Wendell Noteboom to ask the State Party to support the proposal. During discussion it was felt that the concept has a certain degree of appeal given our contentious times, but it was also felt that such a Department would duplicate the role of the State Department. The Motion failed.
Nominations for Club Officers: Lew Pond reported that the following have been nominated as Club Officers for 2016: President – Jeni Kren, Vice President – Alexia Baca, Secretary – Bob Jones, Treasurer – Dave Rowell, At Large – vacant. Additional nominations will be open from the floor at the meeting on November 19, and elections will be held at that time. The new officers will be sworn in at the Club’s Holiday meeting in December.
New Business: None
Hot Topics: Glynda Ward commented on the political conservatism of Republican Senator Walter Jones of South Carolina.
Introductions: 18 members and guests were present and introduced themselves. Each commented on their personal reaction to the Democratic Presidential Debates.
* Naturalization Ceremony for New Citizens is held each month at the Saroyan Theater at the Fresno Convention Center. If you would like to volunteer to register new citizens to vote call Bob Jones, at (559) 787-2287. The next event is Wednesday, December 15, at 9:30 a.m. We need volunteers but especially those with Spanish or Middle Eastern language skills. Registering new citizens is sometimes an emotional but always a personally rewarding experience.
* Jeni encourages members who live in Clovis to attend the City Council and/or City Planning Commission meetings held each month in the City Council Chambers.
* The Fresno County Democratic Women’s Club meets monthly at the Ramada Inn, Shaw and Fwy 41, Fresno, the fourth Monday of the Month. The Women’s Club was established in 1932 and is the oldest continuously operating Democratic Women’s Club in California. The next meeting is 11:00 a.m., November 23, 2015. Contact Joyce Jones (559) 281-6263 for information.
Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned at 7:45 p.m. The next regular meeting will be held at 6:00 p.m., November 19, 2015 at Seven Bar and Grill, 25 Shaw Ave, Clovis, CA.