Meeting Notes

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Meeting notes from March 24, 2014

DeForest Area Progressives

Meeting notes

March 24, 2014


Next meeting: Monday, March 31, 2014, at Isabel's, 816 South Street, DeForest, 6:00-8:00 p.m.


There were seven people at the March 24th meeting.  Chair Marcia passed out a printed agenda for the meeting!


Thank yous were passed all around for attendance and work done by DAP-pers on the Wisconsin Grassroots Network Festival last Saturday, the 22nd.  The DAP presence and contribution were notable.  Also true of the Mike McCabe presentation at the DeForest Library.  Karen reported that those staffing the table at the WGN Fest sold 27 bumper stickers (18 "Vote Burke Not the Jerk" and 9 "Want to Work Vote for Burke") and 54 two and a quarter inch buttons and 3 three inch buttons.  There was $95 in the bag at the end of the day, although there should have been $111.  It was a lesson in watching both the inventory and the cash box more carefully at future events.  There was lots of video taken at the Fest, especially of George Lakoff's presentations, and it will be available on Youtube.


We went over leafleting and other plans to promote the two referendums on the DeForest and Windsor ballots April 1st


Marcia expounded on the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF).  Both she and Karen have attended some of the CELDF training.  She asked all of us to review the CELDF web page to get familiar with it and to try to decide what, if anything, we want to pursue along those lines.  Do we want to pursue CELDF projects locally in Wisconsin, as has been done successfully in other states?  What do we want to do as DAP?  CELDF has lawyers who will help local communities to develop and pass "Declarations of Community Rights," which will help to resist outside forces such as mining corporations from pushing locals around.  Further discussion on this topic will take place at future DAP meetings.


John Stanley reported on a number of contacts he has made and other issues and questions that came up in regard to the WGN Fest.




                                                           John Scepanski

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Meeting notes from March 17, 2014

DeForest Area Progressives Meeting Notes March 17, 2014 Next meeting: Monday, March 24, 2014, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Isabel's, 816 South Street, DeForest There were 14 people present at the March 17th meeting. Good turnout! Terri Treinen joined us for the first hour. Terri is running for DeForest Area School Board. She is a 1988 graduate of DeForest High School. She has her MBA from Edgewood. Three years ago she became interested in the school district when the discussions were going on about administrators' raises. She has a child in attendance in the district. She feels the current school board is too remote. She does not care too much for the "policy governance" method of doing board business. If elected, she will be more engaged and "in the buildings" of the schools, as the current board has not been. She feels the jury is still out on Common Core. She feels that the budget cuts of the last few years at the state level are having a negative impact, although DASD is not as impacted as other districts. She thinks the board needs more give and take with the public, and she is appalled at the poor public attendance at school board meetings. There is no video of the meetings, and meeting minutes are vague and uninformative. Terri does not like the elimination of elementary school librarians and reading specialists. There are two reading specialists in the district now, but we need more, as reading is of utmost importance. We talked of many other subjects. All of those in attendance seemed very impressed with Terri Treinen and some volunteered to work for her election. We discussed activities afoot to promote the passage of "YES" votes on the two referendums on the ballot April 1st to get money out of politics (or at least to lessen its influence). Signs are going up. A lit drop is in the works. We had decent attendance at the Mike McCabe presentation, along with coverage by Lauren Anderson of the local news media, the DeForest Times-Tribune. At least two and maybe more DAP members will be out on the curbs holding up "VOTE YES" signs the day of voting. DAP has a significant role in the Wisconsin Grassroots Network's 6th Annual Festival this Saturday at Wisconsin Heights High School in Mazomanie. We will have our DAP publicity table, kindly furnished and paid for by Frank D. Several of us will be facilitating breakout sessions. Special thanks to Marcia for pushing us all to get acquainted with George Lakoff's writings, as George will be the featured keynote speaker. Marcia reported on the CELDF (Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund) training she attended recently. CELDF teaches communities -- towns and villages -- how to defend themselves against large corporate takeovers of their local resources. We are no longer the targets of concern by our state legislatures. Corporations are. Many communities around the country are formulating and passing their very own bills of rights (for example, the rights to clean air and clean water). CELDF helps those communities pass ordinances that can help them to defend against corporate exploitation. We will hear more on this at future meetings. In the meantime, do a computer search for CELDF and peruse their website. Ginny reported on the George Ferriter gathering in Cambria last weekend, where George announced his candidacy for Wisconsin's 42nd Assembly District rep against Keith Ripp, whom some of us have been trying to unseat for several elections now. Five or six DAP-pers were in attendance, and a good time was had by all. Work for George, vote for George! Janet mentioned in brief her work with OFA in preparation for the Mary Burke campaign against Scott Walker for governor. Come to the WGN Festival tomorrow, and come to the next DAP meeting Monday. Solidarity Forever! John
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DAP meeting notes from December 16, 2013

DeForest Area Progressives

meeting notes

December 16, 2013


Six people met on the sixteenth. 

The group okayed January 25th for our hosting of the Progressive Partners quarterly meeting.  Liz arranged for the facilities at the DMBWindsorNeighborhoodCenter again, as last April.  John sent in the $45 fee and $100 security deposit (returned as long as we leave the premises neat and clean).  The tentative lineup will be 10:00 a.m. to noon, reports, Q&A, planning from each group present; lunch from noon to 1:00 with informal interchange; and a program from 1:00 to 2:00 (probably something from Marcia on messaging, Lakoff theory, etc).  Yet to be decided is whether to have a simple BYO sack or box lunch or another potluck as we usually have.  We should plan to provide coffee, tea, water, soda, juice, etc., and maybe a selection from Windsor Breads.  Marcia, please put these final touches discussion on the agenda for the next meeting.

A message from Beth Trotter alerted us to the fact that there will be a Windsor vacancy on the DeForest Area School District (DASD) Board this coming election.  The Windsor Rep is not running for re-election.  There are also two other spots up for election, and the incumbents are running again.  Please, some-DAP-per from Windsor run!  Remember, tea partiers are watching too.

Most of the meeting was occupied with a very informative conversation with Brita Olsen, Political Director for the Wisconsin Democratic Party.  Brita is only a few months into the job, but she has other experience with the party.  She has lived for ten years in Madison, having graduated from the UW-Madison, and is originally from Manitowoc.  She spoke about fundraising, the three regions that have been established to implement the "72 county strategy," and a unique "Red to Blue" project to take back some tough districts from the Republicans.  Brita said that Dems in Wisconsin should not be discouraged, recognizing the facts that Democratic Party membership in Wisconsin has doubled in recent years.  The party has many more trained and experienced activists in place than ever before, much due to the organizing efforts of OFA and such in the last few years.  She expressed confidence that we can "go after" Walker in a meaningful way and succeed.  When pressed to identify three main ideas, she named 1) Medicaid/BadgerCare, 2) women's health, and 3) student loan debt.  Of course, limiting her to three topics was unfair, as we discussed many more than that, all of which we do not have space here to detail.  We all look forward to seeing more of Brita in the near future. 

We also discussed a resolution opposing frack sand mining being sponsored by the Wisconsin Network for Peace and Justice and the Madison Action for Mining Alternatives (MAMA).  All DAP in attendance approved signing on in support of the resolution.

Marcia provided copies of the Wisconsin Grassroots Network's "NEWSPAPER DIRECTORY."  As part of the letters-to-the-editors project, each of us who writes letters should provide to Marcia whom we write to, when, and a summary of the topic.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all.        

John Scepanski

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DAP meeting notes from December 9, 2013

DeForest Area Progressives

Meeting notes from John Scepanski

December 9, 2013


NEXT MEETING, GINNY'S AGAIN, 3922 Partridge, Windsor Hills neighborhood MONDAY, DECEMBER 16, 6:00 - 8:00 PM.


There were 12 people in attendance on December 9th.


JohnSki reported that Maureen McCarville will have two challengers for her DaneCounty Board seat this spring, which will require a primary in February.  One challenger is Terry Kelso, who was Maureen's opponent in the last election.  The other challenger is thought to be a 23 year old man from DeForest.


JohnSki also reported that as of the November 30th report from DMB bank, we have $164.18 in our DAP treasury.


Marcia asked members to think of questions to ask Brita Olsen, Political Director for the Wisconsin Democratic Party, who will be our guest at an upcoming meeting.  Let Marcia know your questions ahead of time, please. 


Marcia has been working with some Kathleen Vinehout supporters on Kathleen's potential run for governor.  On January 13th, DAP will sponsor a gathering with Vinehout in DeForest, co-sponsored by our counterparts, Waunakee GROW and Sun Prairie SPARC.


Liz has been working on a location for our January 18th hosting of the quarterly Progressive Partners meeting.  Instead of hosting it in Oregon at the bank as originally suggested, we have decided to host it in the DeForest area, thus Liz's work on location.  New possibilities include St. Olaf Catholic Church and the UCC church in Windsor.  Further action on this is necessary soon, so that we can get the announcements out to other PP members.


The main business at this evening's meeting was meeting and discussion with George Ferriter, candidate for Assembly seat 42, challenger to Keith Ripp, and George's wife and campaign manager, Suzie.  Several members present volunteered to help George with campaign tasks such as canvassing.  George is village president of Doysletown.  Suzie is a member of the school board there.  Suzie has much family who live in the area.  George is a semi-retired mechanical engineer with Fairbanks-Morris in Beloit and commutes back and forth these days before his full retirement.  After his retirement, he intends to begin campaigning full time in January.  I will not divulge here campaign plans he discussed, lest these notes fall into enemy hands.  Suffice it to say that Mr. Ripp seems vulnerable, as he does not do much other than rubber stamp Governor Walker administration doings.


One other thing we discussed briefly was the incipient Wisconsin tea party challenge to the relatively new "Common Core" school standards being promulgated by the State Department of Public Instruction under Superintendent Tony Evers.  Several DAP members expressed their own reservations about Common Core, too.                                   

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