Vote Cheat Sheet

  • Aye - Accept resignation of Martha Bueno from Region 14
  • No action needed - Appoint Josh Curtis to Region 14
  • Aye - Confirm Membership Committee
  • Aye - Confirm Convention Committee
  • Out of Order - 628 Motion to confirm vote on 627
  • Nay - 629 Motion to amend standing rules (regarding proxy validity)
  • Aye - Pending review and discussion - 630 Motion to approve budget for Convention and Communications Committees ($10,000)
  • Aye - 631 Motion to Give Access to Audit Committee
  • Duplicate? - 632 Motion to allocate funds for sound/light production at 2019 Convention ($3,200)
  • Aye - 633 Motion to Adopt Ecanvasser CRM ($3,160)
  • Nay - 634 Motion to grant $750 to Chaz Sanders

Chair Report 

Accept Resignation of Martha Bueno from Region 14 - Aye

Confirm Membership Committee - Aye

Text: Motion to confirm the Membership Committee to be comprised of the following members: Spenser Garber (Chair), Cody Moser, Suzanne Gilmore, Addison Patrick, Ashley McCoy, Matt McCary, and Sal Palma.

Confirm Convention Committee - Aye

Text: Motion to confirm the Convention Committee to be comprised of the following members: Zach Detwiler (Chair), Justin McCue, Mercedes Camargo, Mark Rodriguez, and Ashley McCoy. 

 

Old Business

Election of Region 1 Representative - Julia Hall

Analysis: Julia, as the Secretary of the Santa Rosa affiliate, has been very active in Region 1 and beyond. She is well known and respected in her region. I will have no issues supporting her.

Election of Region 3 Representative - Justin McCue

Analysis: I'm glad that Justin stepped up. He has been consistently supporting the party on social media efforts. Region 3 needs a lot of attention. Hopefully he can provide it.

 

New Business

Motion No.: 628 - Out of Order

Title: Motion to confirm vote on 627

Mover: Chris Rose

Text: The Special Meeting held this past Sunday night was opened in violation of LPF Constitution Article III, Section 4; also, LPF Standing Rules Article V, Section 3. The results of these violations were illegal vote totals and quorum.

In order to show the motion as approved in-order, I move to certify Motion No.: 627 as "passed."

Analysis: I was not at the special meeting, having designated Director Garber as my proxy. However, reviewing the minutes, I see no basis for considering the meeting itself "illegal" or inquorate. While it is true that Martha Bueno's proxy was invalid due to her resignation prior to the meeting, this error did not affect quorum nor would it have affected the vote on Motion 627, nor would the appointment of a replacement Region 14 replacement have changed the outcome. Furthermore, it is not in order to dispute voting procedures after the adjournment of the meeting; the proper time to object was during the voting process. This is doubly the case should the minutes for the special meeting be approved (earlier on the agenda) in which case this motion would also be in conflict with the approved minutes. I will request the Chair to rule this motion out of order should he not do so on his own. Director Rose can either take no action to let the motion stand, or ask someone on the prevailing side to move to reconsider it. I consider this a waste of our time.

Motion No.: 629 - Nay

Title: Motion to amend Standing Rules

Mover: Omar Recuero

Text: I move to amend Standing Rule, Article V Section 3 by separating the language of the rule into 3 parts, adding new language which will create part B and Part C, while placing an amended version of the original language in Part A. The rule, if adopted would read as follows:

Article V, Section III

A.) Per state law, proxy voting shall be allowed, provided an executive committee member’s written (email permitted) notice of proxy is received by both the secretary and the chair no later than 24 hours prior to each meeting. The secretary will announce all proxies during the initial roll call of members at each meeting. A valid proxy shall count as attendance for purposes of establishing a quorum. Only executive committee members in good standing may serve as proxies and no member may serve as proxy for more than one other member. Members may vote on specific questions in absentia by written notice. Participating in meetings via telephony and other electronic means is allowed.

B.) A proxy will be invalidated if notice of proxy cannot be provided by the secretary, if an EC member present at a regular or special meeting of the executive meeting request proof of notice.

C.) A proxy will be invalidated by the presence of the executive committee member(s) at a regular or special meeting of the executive committee, who requested a proxy.

Analysis: As best I can tell, the changes are as follows (bold is new text, strike is removed):

Article V, Section III

A.) Per state law, proxy voting shall be allowed, provided an executive committee member’s written (email permitted) notice of proxy is received by both the secretary and the chair no later than 24 hours prior to each meeting. The secretary will announce all proxies during the initial roll call of members at each meeting. The presence of the member at a meeting will invalidate that member’s proxy.  Only executive committee members in good standing may serve as proxies and no member may serve as proxy for more than one other member. Members may vote on specific questions in absentia by written notice. Participating in meetings via telephony and other electronic means is allowed.

B.) A proxy will be invalidated if notice of proxy cannot be provided by the secretary, if an EC member present at a regular or special meeting of the executive meeting request proof of notice.

C.) A proxy will be invalidated by the presence of the executive committee member(s) at a regular or special meeting of the executive committee, who requested a proxy.

It is my opinion that the amendment is harmless but unnecessary. There is already, via RONR, a well defined process to dispute a proxy. Should a member have a question about a proxy's validity, they can raise a Point of Information during the announcement of proxy requesting proof of timely written notice. If no such proof can be provided, they can raise a Point of Order to request the Chair to declare the proxy invalid. If the Chair refuses, they can challenge the ruling of the Chair and force a vote on it. Even with this amendment, the same exact process would have to be followed to declare a proxy invalid, so it adds nothing. I will vote nay, but if (as is customary on rules amendments) a member moves to refer to Rules Committee I will vote in favor that.

Motion No.: 630 - Aye pending Review and Discussion

Title: Motion to approve budget for Convention and Communications Committees

Mover: Chris Rose

Text: On behalf of the Convention Committee and Communications Committee:

I move to approve the following budget items in the attached document labeled under Projected Misc. Expenses, in which funds shall be available for use by both the Convention and Communications Committees, with a total liability not to exceed $10k, excluding the line item of $3500 for mailers previously approved in Motion 622.

Please see attached documentation:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1zXyPAV5hvNG6EpC1jlWIpS-NcYoQPu24GNTUk9OlTcw/htmlview

Analysis: I am assuming, pending further review when I have the time, that the itemized expense budget makes sense and can be defended with a valid ROI based on projected Convention attendees. So long as that is the case after I have a chance to review it, and so long as none of the expenses appear to be illegitimate or excessive, I will vote in favor of the budget unconditionally. If I do have issues with a particular expense, if that cannot be resolved by discussion I will move to divide the question to consider those expenses separately.

Motion No.: 631 - Aye

Title: Motion to Give Access to Audit Committee

Mover: David Salisbury

Text: I move to give the Audit Committee access to the online banking of the LPF, PayPal, Stripe, and Quickbooks so that the committee may perform its necessary function.

Analysis: The Audit Committee clearly needs this access to properly do its job. The questions I have on this are: can the access be limited to read-only? Are the Audit Committee members under a Non-Disclosure Agreement, or would it not matter since all of this information eventually becomes public record via financial report filings? But these are operational questions that do not affect my support for the motion.

Motion No.: 632 - Duplicate?

Title: Motion to allocate funds for sound/light production at 2019 Convention

Mover: Marcos Miralles

Text: I move to allocate up to $3200 to DJ9 for sound and light production at 2019 convention.

Analysis: It is my understanding that this budget authorization is included in Motion 630. If so, this motion is a duplicate if 630 passes unmodified. While I appreciate not expecting professional sound and light for free, the cost does seem high, particularly since the LPF purchased sound and light equipment for the prior convention if I recall correctly. I would like to see this cost substantiated, particularly if we are renting new equipment rather than using the previously purchased equipment (perhaps the itemized budget does this justification?).

Motion No.: 633 - Aye

Title: Motion to Adopt Ecanvasser CRM

Mover: Spenser Garber

Text: I move to authorize the Membership Committee to expend up to $3,160 for a 1-year subscription for the ECanvasser CRM platform.

Analysis: As part of the team that reviewed possible CRM solutions, I was highly impressed by ECanvasser's technical merits for a very reasonable price. However, in light of our financial situation at the time, I recommended holding off on it and instead approving the LNC CiviCRM believing that it would be an interim solution that we could rapidly bring online for basic credentialing with no out of pocket expense. I was wrong. Four months later, after substantial delays and miscommunication, the LNC CiviCRM is still not online for the LPF, and I do not know of a timeline when this will be fixed, and substantial burden is being placed on the LPF regarding data input without the LNC being willing to provide direct data management access to the LPF. In light of this mismatch in expectation and reality and our financial situation improving, I believe now is the time that warrants an investment into our own professional CRM. It is my expectation that Director Garber and Treasurer Nekhaila can speak further to the technical and organizational benefits of approving this CRM, particularly for de-duplicating inputs and ingesting regular voter data from Tallahassee, which were difficulties we had with the prior self-hosted CiviCRM.

Motion No.: 634 - Nay

Title: Motion to grant $750 to Chaz Sanders

Mover: Marcos Miralles

Text: I move to grant $750 to Chaz Sanders for his assistance with LPF fundraising.

Analysis: I have the utmost respect for the hard work that Mr. Sanders has put into the party. However, I must vote against this motion since it has what I believe to be unintended consequences on both tax liability and precedent. Mr. Sanders, to my knowledge, has not signed an independent fundraiser contract with the party. Furthermore, as Communications Chair, he was appointed by the LPF Chair, confirmed by the Executive Committee, and reports monthly to the EC for direction on behalf of the party, so it would be difficult to establish that Mr. Sanders is an independent contractor. As such, the IRS may consider any payments to Mr. Sanders as employee compensation, requiring federal income tax withholding as well as incurring Social Security, Medicare, and possibly unemployment tax obligations on the party. Needless to say, taxation is theft. It is also substantially inconvenient since the party is not set up to remit tax payments via EFTPS to my knowledge. On the other hand, without considering this expense to be employee payment for services rendered, it would otherwise be considered a non-exempt expenditure and incur a corporate income tax obligation of the party to the IRS of 22%. I cannot support this on liability grounds.

I also think it's a bad precedent to award - with no contract, well-defined process, or any other guidance - grants to individual party volunteers. Mr. Sanders is hardly the only volunteer who has put in substantially beneficial work to the party. Should the others expect a grant as well? It opens a can of worms.

I will vote against this motion even acknowledging that Mr. Sanders probably deserves the money, but I do have three suggestions. The first is that we consider waiving the convention fee for Mr. Sanders (and potentially any other volunteers whose activities are critical to the success of the convention itself) since that is something within our power to do without risks. The second is that EC members who wish to grant an award to Mr. Sanders should consider directly gifting him from their personal funds - such personal gifts are unambiguously tax-exempt. The third is to consider for the 2020 convention establishing a scholarship fund with well defined award criteria to assist party members who may find supporting the party a financial burden. This would have to be very carefully vetted by the Rules Committee, Audit Committee, and the Treasurer to ensure proper compliance with Division of Elections requirements and the tax code however.