May 26, 2016

DCDP Central Committee

May 26, 2016 7 pm

Meeting Minutes

Chair Crystal Rhoads called the meeting to order. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

Roll Call

Secretary Linda Bowman called roll. In attendance were Chair Crystal Rhoades, Vice Chair Jake Seeman, Secretary Linda Bowman, Treasurer Scott Packer, Diversity Rep. Jesse Parker, African-American Rep. Marc Nda, Latino Rep. Rebecca Valdez, Kenneth Allen LD 20, Doug Bowman LD 13, Melissa Breazile LD 7, Jennie Butler LD 6, Benjamin Cass LD 7, William Clark LD 8, Rhiannon Cobb LD 5, Kevin Earthsoul LD 10, Lynne Elwood LD 20, Nate Gadzinski LD 20, Michael Hughes LD 6, Megan Hunt LD 8, Craig Jackson LD 5, Lisa Jennings LD 10, Gail Knapp LD 13, Sara Koholoski LD 4, Vergie Lewis LD 11, Fiona Matthews LD 20, Robert Meyers LD 12, Joe Orsi LD 4, Pamela Owens LD 11, Angie Palmer LD 8, Erin Penner LD 12, Phillip Phillips LD 4, Kristie Pierce LD 39, Richard Ream LD 11, Fred Robertson LD 12, Amanda Ryan LD 9, Dulce Sherman LD 4, and Dakotah Smith LD 9.

Also in attendance were a number of presidential preference delegates from the Douglas County convention.

Motion to Seat alternates by Pamela Owens LD 11, seconded by Donna Callie LD 8. Passed by a voice vote.

Chair Crystal Rhoades determined a quorum was achieved.

Chair Crystal Rhoades read Article II – Statement of Purpose.
Introduction of the Executive Committee
Crystal Rhoades Chair
Scott Packer Treasurer
Marc Nda African American Representative
Rebecca Valdez Latino Representative
Jake Seeman Vice Chair
Jesse Parker Diversity Representative
Linda Bowman Secretary

Approval of Minutes

Chair Crystal Rhoades indicated that the minutes from the last meeting are available for review on the table by the door and a copy at the front table.

Joe Orsi LD 4 moved to approve the minutes, Pamela Owens LD 11 seconded. Passed by a voice vote.

Point of Information: Fiona Matthews LD 20 – When will the convention minutes be available? Chair Crystal Rhoades: The convention minutes are approved at the next convention.

Treasurer’s Report

Bob Meyers LD 12; Motion to hear Treasurer’s report , Meg Barr LD 11 seconded. Passed by a voice vote.
Treasurer Scott Packer explained there a limited number of Treasurer reports that must be turned in prior to leaving. One person per LD my check it out at the front table and is responsible for returning the report.

Treasurer Scott Packer read the report and gave a summary of the financial condition.

Point of Information: Ben Cass LD 7 – What is the $1500 debit?

Treasurer Scott Packer: a donor’s check bounced, they have been contacted.

Doug Paterson LD 8: can we pass the hat for donations? The Chair answered yes.

Pamela Owens LD 11 moved to pass the hat at every Central Committee meeting. Meg Barr LD 11 seconded. Passed by a voice vote.

Richard Ream gave a recap of the GEM Program, including the method of payment.

Old Business

Chair Crystal Rhoades gave an information overview about the State Convention including:

  • Review of the types of Delegates
  • Reasons to go the State Convention
  • Election of State Party Officials
  • Platform

Point of Information Bill Clark LD 8: Newly elected Super Delegates don’t take office until January 1st.

Pamela Owens LD 11: Newly elected Super Delegates take office immediately.

Fiona Matthews LD 20: January 1st . More discussion on timing including Scott Williams LD 7, Preston Love LD 13 and Doug Paterson LD 8.

Chair Crystal Rhoades: We need clarification as the Bylaws and Constitution are in conflict. Suggests that everyone go to the State Convention and vote.

Question: Meg Barr LD 11: How much are rooms at the hotel in Kearney?

Allison Wade: $125 a night through the convention website, there is a June 3 deadline to book through the convention. A Hosted table for the 7 pm Saturday night dinner is $350 for ten people, a single dinner $40.

Phil Phillips LD 4: asked for the rates to be repeated.

Pass the Hat collected $107.87.

Question: Kevin Earthsoul LD 10: Does the GEM Program use Act Blue? Richard Ream: Yes.

New Business

  • Committee Interest Sign up

Chair Crystal Rhoades explained each of the committees and passed out sign-up sheets

  • Candidate Search Committee
  • Eleanor Roosevelt Luncheon Committee
  • Finance and Audit Committee
  • Fundraising Committee
  • Golf Outing Committee
  • Rules and Organization Committee
  • Technology Committee


  • Jesse Parker – Big Elk Focus Group
    • Jesse Parker introduced Dr. Rudi Mitchell, direct descendent of Chief Big Elk, and John Pappan LD 13 the Chair of Big Elk Native American Center. They gave a review of the group that is working in the greater Omaha Area and discussed the need for volunteers, especially a grant writer.
    • Pamela Owens requested to give an overview of the Native American Caucus at the state level. In order to start a Native American Caucus at the County level, it would take a minimum of 10 people meeting regularly. You do not need to be a Native American to join.
    • Ford Brown asked who is the Chair of the State Native American Caucus? Answer:Frank LaMere.
    • Ken Riter LD 8 asked Jesse Parker to send around a sign-up sheet.
  • Nebraska Votes
    • Kevin Earthsoul gave an overview of Nebraska Votes
      • Get out the vote so Democrats win
      • Registration drives, community engagement, train the trainer
      • Festivals, farmer’s markets presence
      • Website and facebook pages – NEVOTES.ORG
      • Focus is on LDs 5 & 7 as many unregistered people who are typically Democrats.

Richard Reem LD 11 commented that the NE Election Commission said that Democrats surpass Republicans in registered voters by 571. Richard brought blank voter registration forms for people to take home.

Question: Edison McDonald asked the Chair for permission to open the door due to the heat. Chair: YES!

  • Black Votes Matter

Preston Love LD 13: asked to give a hand to LD 13 for representation on the Executive Committee, and for Bernie and Hillary supporters working together in the LD. Preston reminded everyone to vote to Retain, and to put a value on life and turnout. A new Retain a Just Nebraska brochures are available to take home, and there is a sign-up sheet. Celebrate North Omaha, Black Votes Matter! In previous years there was a gap between turnout in North Omaha and the rest of the city of at least 20%. This year, there was a 0% gap. Black Votes Matter yard signs are available and there are many activities to participate in. Preston introduced Pastor Allen whose interfaith group will register 10,000 new voters this summer. It is important that North Omaha votes.

Fiona Matthews LD 20: how much are the Black Votes Matter signs? Preston: $2.50

Candidates for Office

  • Justin Wayne LD 13 State Legislature
    • Very diverse LD, NE Omaha, and county north
    • Priorities are creating jobs, social issues like Medicaid expansion
  • Tony Vargas LD 7 State Legislature
    • Area is Downtown and South Omaha
    • Needs volunteers to help increase turnout, only 45% of 10 of the 12 precincts voted
  • Ben Perlman Omaha Public School board District 3
    • Comes from a family of teachers
    • Classroom up style, importance of early childhood education
  • Amanda Ryan Omaha Public School board District 7
    • Needs volunteers
    • Main issue is to update technology
  • Ricky Smith Omaha Public School board District 1
    • Needs volunteers
    • Main issue is that students need to graduate career ready, not just passed through

Candidates for Party Offices:

  • Pamela Owens spoke on behalf of Maureen Monahan’s 1st Associate Chair campaign.
  • Phil Montag spoke on behalf of his 2nd Associate Chair campaign.
  • Joe Orsi spoke on behalf of his Chair of Working Families Caucus campaign.


Resolutions from the County Convention

Chair Crystal Rhoades recognized Fiona Matthews LD 20: We were told that all people in attendance at the convention would be able to vote on the resolutions that were carried over.

Chair Crystal Rhoades: Trevor said No

Donna Callie LD 8: more time to read the platform.

Point of Order: Kevin Earthsoul LD 10: everyone should be seated.

Point of Order: Richard Ream LD 11: is it legal?

Chair Crystal Rhoades: we want to be fair, and there is conflicting information.

Point of Order: Joe Orsi LD 4: there is not another Central Committee meeting before the State Convention.

Point of Order: Ford Mommaerts-Brown LD 11: The convention Chair said to table all business. Business can only be returned to take from the table.

Chair Crystal Rhoades: call break to check consult with an attorney (Scott Packer).

Chair rules County Central Committee is a continuation of the convention and all people can vote. We cannot vote on the platform, the constitution holds sway.

Ken Riter LD 9: the platform is written as a resolution.

Point of clarification: Joe Orsi LD 4: If this meeting is a continuation of the convention, why can’t we vote on the platform?

Scott Packer: Article 4 Subsection D

Point of Clarification: Ben Cass LD 7; or Article 2 Subsection A “Shall as assigned” .

Chair Crystal Rhoades rules to vote on the question.

Doug Paterson LD 8: a Platform is important.

Scott Williams LD 7: “I move to remove from the table resolutions from County Convention table and designated for this Douglas County Central Committee meeting, with the following two conditions:

  1. Anyone seated with voting authority at County Convention be allowed to vote this evening, regardless of their status of voting at this Central Committee meeting on other business, and
  2. The resolutions to be voted on individually. “

Meg Barr LD 11 seconded, motion passed. 39 yes, 5 no.

Fiona Matthews LD 20 presented Animal Agriculture resolution.

Melanie Williams LD 31moved to discuss, Ken Riter LD 9 seconded.

Bob Meyers LD 12: Difficultly for farmers

Mike Burgess LD 5: From a farming family, he is not opposed.

Barbara Payton LD 31: opposed

Kendall Anderson LD 8: Will vote no without an amendment.

Fionia Matthews LD 20: will remove government funding , the resolution does not out law animal production for food.

Erin Penner LD 12: Move to Call, Donna Callie LD 8 seconded. Motion passed 38 – 6.

Vote on Animal Agriculture resolution – 17 yes, 34 no. Motion failed.

Joe Orsi LD 4 moved to hear Resolution on the US Economy. Ford Brown LD seconded. Passed by voice vote.

Ken Riter LD 9 presented the resolution on the US Economy. Copies were passed out, and Ken Riter LD 9 read the resolution.

Bob Meyers LD 12: opposed to the resolution because it is not well defined.

Luis Jimenez LD 9 : for

Joe Orsi LD 4: the resolution stands for all.

Jennie Bulter LD 6: move to call the vote, Erin Penner LD 12 seconded. Motion carried; 45 yes 6 no.

Vote on resolution on US Economy, 42 yes to 10 no. The resolution passed.

Doug Bowman LD 13 presented and read resolution on Super Delegates #1.

Fiona Matthews moves to discuss. Kendall Anderson LD 8 seconds.

Ben Cass LD 7: friendly amendment to add the words “and conventions”. Doug Bowman LD 13 accepted the friendly amendment.

Call the vote. 54 yes with abstentions, the resolution passed.

Doug Bowman read resolution on Super Delegates #2

Point of Information; Ford “do you mean to say “apportioned”?

Nate Gadzinski LD 20: move to discuss. Mike Burgess LD 5 seconded.

Donna Calli LD 8: friendly amendment to say “either primary or caucus”

Doug Bowman LD 13 refused the friendly amendment.

Pamela Owens LD 11: against the resolution

Joe Orsi LD 4: for the resolution

Nate Gadzinski LD 20: in favor

Scott Williams LD 7: in favor, it is a statement of principles, and is not binding.

Melanie Williams LD 31: in favor

Richard Ream LD 11; call the question to end discussion. Erin Penner LD 12: seconded. Yes 50, no 4

Vote for resolution: 48 yes, 10 opposed, the resolution passed.

Ken Riter LD 9: brings resolution for Platform.

Bob Meyers LD 12: opposed. What committee worked on this?

Chair Crystal Rhoades: anyone can bring a resolution from the floor.

Ken Riter LD 9: states the Nebraska Grassroots Progressives worked on the Platform .

Richard Ream LD 11: move to postpone to a specific date, Willy Hamilton LD 5 seconded. Vote to postpone – yes 29; no 22

Secretary Linda Bowman will email platform to the Central Committee.

Doug Paterson LD 8: We need a platform to show what our core principals are.

Luis Jimenez LD 9: Nebraska Grassroots Progressives please stand. Ken Riter LD 9, Kendall Anderson LD 8, Ford Brown LD 11, Doug Bowman LD 13, Linda Bowman LD 13, Luis Jimenez LD 9, Joe Orsi LD 4, Jesse Parker LD and Doug Paterson LD 8stood.

Chair Crystal Rhoades stressed that to move forward we will be inclusive with each other.

Nat Gadzinksi LD 20: The platform vote should be the first order of business at the next meeting.

Joe Orsi LD 4: the Platform is to acknowledge what we stand for.

Richard Ream LD 11: if you came in late make sure you sign in. If you miss two meetings you can lose your LD seat.

Treasurer Scott Packer: Return the treasure reports before leaving


Erin Penner move to adjourn. Kendall Anderson second. Passed by voice vote.

Willy Hamilton LD 5: People were not called on fairly.

Chair Crystal Rhoades: We need to be inclusive and call on people fairly.

Joe Orsi LD 4: announced Nebraska Grassroots Progressive’s meeting at DoSpace Sunday at 5:30, and Progressive Breakfast the 3rd Thursday, everyone is invited.

Kendall Anderson LD 8: seconded motion to adjourn – a second time. Passed with voice vote.

Submitted by Linda Bowman, Secretary

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