ANNUAL MEETING – Saturday, May 21
T he 2016 Annual Meeting for the Morgantown-Monongalia County LWV will be held Saturday, May 21, at Sargasso Restaurant, 215 Don Knotts Blvd, from 11:30 -3:00. After the noon luncheon, our special speaker will be Stephen Smith, (pictured left), the current WV Healthy Kids and Families Coalition Executive Director. Prior to coming to Healthy Kids, Stephen was the director of organizing for the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights and is the author of Stoking the Fire of Democracy: Our Generation’s Introduction to Grassroots Organizing. A graduate of Harvard University and the London School of Economics, Stephen has worked with a wide range of communities – from running a for-profit bakery operated by people with disabilities to founding a youth advocacy organization that won victories on health care and financial aid. Born in Charleston, WV, Stephen and his family are thrilled to be back home in West Virginia. The title of his talk is: “The Fight to End Child Poverty in West Virginia”.
The public is invited to come to hear the speaker at 1:00, or make reservations to attend the luncheon at noon. We welcome everyone; bring a guest! To make reservations for the luncheon, please call Shirley Rosenbaum at 304-599-2370. Sandwiches, choice of soup or salad, and beverages will be served. See menu on next page.
The business meeting will begin at 2:00. A dues increase will be proposed (to begin January 2017). Most of the current $44 individual membership payment is sent to the LWV-US ($32) and the LWV-WV ($11), leaving only a dollar to support our local league. The proposed increase to $48 will help cover the costs of the newsletter mailings. The dues increase will have to be approved by 2/3 of the members attending the annual meeting. Other business will be adoption of the budget, the proposed local program, and the election of officers. Please plan to attend this important meeting!
Saturday, May 21, 2016
215 Don Knotts Blvd
Full Sandwich or Wrap with Choice of Soup, Salad, or Fries $14.00
Choice of Turkey, Ham, or Tuna Salad, served on Sourdough, wheat, gluten free bread, or wrap
or Tuna Melt (open-faced on English Muffin)
Selection of Cookies
Beverages and Gratuity are included
***Give your reservation to your caller, or call Shirley Rosenbaum (304-599-2370) before Thursday, May 19
Please plan to pay your dues when you come to the annual meeting! Currently dues are $44 for an individual, $66 for a household (two at the same address), and $22 student. Checks should be made to LWV Morgantown-Mon County.
Dues may be mailed to: Lyndell Millecchia, Treasurer, 476 Lawnview Drive, Morgantown, WV 26505. You can also pay with your credit card at http://tinyurl.com/paylwvmm or you may send money from your PayPal account to email@example.com .
Note: we will also be giving “Democracy in Action” awards at the Annual Meeting!
OCOF and the LWV
The League of Women Voters and Our Children, Our Future (OCOF) wants you to vote twice this month. Vote once in the Primary, then vote a second time by May 10, Election Day, to choose the ISSUES that you want to be part of the Our Children, Our Future 2016 Commitment (see photos below).
You can vote at http://www.ocofwv.org/vote-now/ To explore the OCOF issues on the ballot,
On May 21, at our Annual Meeting luncheon at Sargasso, OCOF Executive Director Stephen Smith will be our keynote speaker; he will talk about The Fight to End Child Poverty in West Virginia, how you can become involved, and the OCOF process about how issues are vetted, developed into bills, and presented to the West Virginia Legislature. OCOF has amazing success in turning many bills into law.
On July 28th, 9am to 3pm, we are hosting an OCOF Electoral Workshop at the Hazel Ruby McQuain Conference Center at Mon General. Registration will soon be available at http://ocofwv.org/electoral.
In the meantime, if you are interested in helping your League with this highly useful public event, please email Jonathan Rosenbaum at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The three forums held by the League at South Middle School (Wednesday April 13, 20, and 27) were very well attended – about 75 came to the third one for the contested offices. All the forums were filmed by Mike Ellis from West TV, and can be viewed on our website at http://videos.lwvwv.org . Two of the LWV forums will be broadcast next Saturday, May 7, on Channel 3, Comcast. The forum on the six levies will be broadcast beginning at 10 a.m. The forum with prosecuting attorney, sheriff, delegate and senate candidates will be broadcast from 11 a.m. until noon.
Though we are non-partisan, we can take positions on issues. Our League has a consensus position in favor of adequate funding for Libraries, including Levies. Member Lyndell Millecchia, President of the Morgantown Library Board of Trustees, made the presentation for the Library Levy at our Levy Forum. Among her comments are the following:
“In addition to the Downtown Library, there are five branch libraries: the Clay Battelle Library in Blacksville, the Cheat Area Library, the Clinton District Library, the Aull Center for History and Genealogy, and the Arnettsville Library in the Arnettsville Community Center. The Board of Trustees has made great efforts over the past 52 years to bring library services to the entire county. Without the levy, however, it is unlikely that the branches can continue operating.
There is a long list of the tangible benefits provided by the Public Library System. Books, movies and audio books can be checked out; computers are available; there is free Wi-Fi access. Our library stays current with new technologies, providing wonderful collections of e-books, streaming media, and e-magazines. It offers amazing local history and genealogy resources. The libraries in our system are dedicated to bridging the digital divide and ensuring that all citizens have access to online government information, job applications, and more.
The library offers many daytime and evening programs and story times for children. These programs provide critical support for early literacy. The summer reading programs help children maintain their skills so they are better prepared to do well in school in the fall.
The library is much more than just the materials that can be checked out. It is a source for community interaction and outreach, providing meeting space and adult programs on a wide variety of topics. Over 300 non-profit organizations meet at the library at no cost. The library puts a face on our community and brings intangible benefits over and above the traditional role of a place to get books.
Levy funds will not only improve our core mission of promoting reading and literacy, but also aid the continuance of access to information regardless of socio-economic status. From toddler to senior citizen, from University and High School student to Home Schooled family, your libraries are anchors in the community that provide entertainment, information and a local bond to community events through public information space and social gathering space. They are truly essential for community growth and vitality.”
Our condolences go out to the friends and family of long-time member Jan Bagby,who passed away in April. Jan was a vital member of the local league, often serving on the board and providing expertise on International Relations. She was always involved in League activities, especially with Voters Service. She always added to our meetings with her humor, intelligence and charm!
LWV Morgantown-Monongalia County
Proposed 2016-2017 Local Program
- Local Government:
- Study of County taxation and revenues, in light of the reduction in coal severance funds.
- Revive Observer Corps
- Action to promote orderly development in Monongalia County and monitor the work of the Monongalia County Planning Commission.
- Encourage adoption and implementation of a Comprehensive Plan for Monongalia County, including impact fees.
- Monitor and take action where needed with regard to improving traffic conditions, including pedestrian and cyclist safety.
- Monitor the implementation of the Complete Streets legislation so that the design of our transportation system can be inclusive of all forms of transportation.
- Voters Service:
- Continue to advocate for open access to registration and voting.
- Monitor new legislation on voter registration and voter ID.
- Natural Resources:
- Study water quality in the Monongahela River including Morgantown Utility Board and Department of Natural Resources testing and their relation to Marcellus Shale gas extraction processes and coal mining.
- Study current state regulation of Marcellus Shale gas extraction. Work with legislators to amend the Marcellus legislation with regard to those issues that still need regulation.
- Study current municipal and county ordinances related to extractive industries. Work with local officials to ensure that the strongest ordinances possible are promulgated to protect the health and safety of citizens.
- Monitor Source Water Protection Program (SWPP).
- Strategize and act to promote an efficient county solid waste recycling program.
- Social Justice:
- Continue our collaboration with the Community Coalition for Social Justice (CCSJ).
- Continue our collaboration with Our Children, Our Future (OCOF).