General Assembly of the Community Rights Coalition of Jefferson County, WA – Minutes for March 2013
- GA Minutes for Community Rights Coalition, Mar 2, 2013Facilitator: Scotty
Stack taker: Julia
Time keeper: Rick
Minutes: Mike R
Paul Cienfuegos may be invited to come in April. Can be either on 4/13 or 4/21
Proposals from O’Neil
- De-briefing on Paul’s Workshop
- Democracy School
- Net pens
- GMO-A definition of the Study Group was requested:
..”It was formed to study the issues and ordinances, and to generate ideas and report back to the GA. Now that this is done, it has wider leeway for further actions. . .Any group can form for any reason, and set their own agenda.
– Proposals from the Study Group:
1. That a date, time and place be arranged (partly today, and partly through a study group) for an open meeting to discuss “Next Steps”, working with information from the Paul Cienfuegos workshop. After discussion, it was passed, as amended.
2. To bring names for a list, and an orientation event. Passed as is. Meanwhile names can be sent to Julia to begin a list at email@example.com
3. Time, place, date for Orientation meeting as in #2
Passed, as is. The times and dates are to be generated after the “Next Steps” are more fully determined. (See #1)
4. Time, dates, for production of a series for KPTZ and other media to include interviews. Passed as revised.
The next Study Group will have other points to discussion
Net Pens. . .New law in Olympia to allow Counties to determine their own net pen requirements died in committee.
Paul Cienfuegos Workshop: Getting out ot the box, out of the loops that keep us from getting things accomplished. . .Steps to break the loop
-Establishing legal strategies to unravel corporate paradigm
-Then using what we have established to enforce it over the next 30 years. County Commissioners may help, if not, a charter system will have to be established. Working within the system of elected officials…The commissioners may help us to move towards a charter system
-We should have those involved such as farmers, fishermen, etc, involved in any discussion about the rights of Nature.
-There is always action possible outside of the system, outside the box
-Framing the issues to potential participants: ask, “What do you think about fish pens being shoved down our throats by the State?” “Are you OK with our rights and democracy being taken away from us?”
– Creating community by talking to people about this, and the lack of democracy
– We need the people to get behind us on these issues, and soon.
– We also need to begin the processes simultaneously
– Ellen will bring copies printed out from “Read The Dirt” illustrating what others have done
– Co Commissioners can rescind anything they have passed, or that the people have passed by initiative.
– So, we need to get them to help us in charter effort
– Other communities have created open venues allowing the people to object
– When we begin to stand up to fish pens or other Actions, more people will come in with us. People who like actions, more than meetings.
– Bonding requirements for fish pens.. .call Al ….
– Question of cost. . . .$3000
– Will include all legal help from CELDEF we may need in the future
– A show of hands indicated that we may have 25 people ready to sign up
-Do a fund-raiser for Democracy School…Kai has a date that we may find to set it for
– Get a dialog w Kai
– We want to set a date as soon as possible.
Community Rights of Jefferson County
Present: Scotty – facilitator, Julia – Scribe, Rick – Time Keeper, Mike R. – Stack, Lynn, Mike M., O’Neill, Kevin, Niles, Frank, Diane, Marcus, Jo Q., Paul – Lawyer.
1. Standardized Agenda
2. Democracy School
3. Farm Survey
4. County Constitution Report
5. Banking Report
8. Paul Richmond Attorney
9. Names of people or groups interested in joining – tabled
10. Website – tabled
11. Hood Canal Coalition – tabled
12. Study Group report – to be emailed.
Meeting to order, minutes, discussion about whether old business or new business goes first, study groups reports, working group report backs, discussion, announcements.
Mike M. has tried to contact CELDEF to come up with an April school. Would like a list of who would be interested and their phone numbers. Mt. Vernon’s Democracy School was cancelled – April 6.
Scholarship possibilities – Bellingham built-in scholarships. Cost unknown until we reach CEDELF.
Mike will continue to try to reach the scheduler and will keep us informed. The group feels that within a month would be best.
Some of us feel paralyzed with out the D. School and some of us don’t.
Being presented to a lot of groups around town. June 17th – formal presentation at Chamber of Commerce. Very good picture of farms around here. Below $50,000 gross and above %50,000 gross. We are very similar to the national picture. Would like to do a presentation at QUUF under the Banner of Community Rights – that would be open to the community.There are also actions groups forming around this survey having to do food security. Looking at 4-20
Report on County Constitution by Julia
Julia came up with a run down of what she found while trying to find a county constitution. Basically it appears that we were created by state law for the purpose of dividing up the land and developing it. She also verified this with a conversation with a treasurer from another county.
Paul talked about how the original federal constitution was formed. And also verified that counties do not have constitutions.
Banking Report by Julia:
Julia reported that due to Jefferson County’s Treasurer’s statement that B of A was the only bank that could do warrants for the county she did a survey of Counties and where they Banked. Then came up with a list of banks chartered in WA, and will come up with the list of “Public Depositories”which it turns out Diane has! Report will be put up on Occupy’s website and available to be put up wherever.
There was a proposal for Mike M. and Julia C. to do the Paul C.
We tabled this and Mike and Julia will come up with a new proposal next GA. This proposal will include how the money for misc. will be tracked and paid out.
O’Neill had a meeting about KPTZ w/ Deanna and Emily. Steve Evans emailed O’Neill that he did a show on Compass about the original Paul C. workshop and would be willing to do another. Sent her a link to the original show so we could hear it.
Paul Richmond Attorney:
Washington’s constitutions grants more rights that than the US Constitution. RCW 4960 – whistle blower protection used to protect people who complain about you. (as in corporations which sue you)
SLAPP Suit – used to way down activists with court actions to wear them down. Paul gave us a handout and a brief run down on the process. These are civil suits. SLAPP means Strategic Lawsuit against Public Participation. Question about what the remedy is – we are a community property state. If you have a spouse all assets are pooled. When they sue one party under law they can go after your wife. There are things such as trusts that mitigate this.
Grand Juries – passed out a hand out from the Grand Jury Resistance Project – you can not have a lawyer with you in the courtroom, you have limited 5th amendment rights, you should never lie when in front of a grand jury. They can hold people in jail for not talking but it can not be punitive – when it becomes clear that people will never talk they need to be released. Grand Jury hearings are secret. Federal Court – usually because of property destruction – like animal rights people and anarchists. The Grand Jury interviews witnesses and targets. It depends which you are what immunity is offered. If you refuse to answer their questions and refuse immunity then you can get thrown in jail to force you to talk.
A common way to hamper movements is to arrest a lot of people then it all becomes about protecting the people arrested and the original purpose gets lost.
A lot of municipalities are defended by private firms who charge by the hour – so it is in the interest of the private firms to spend as many hours as possible.
If it is not a criminal charge can you be protected by umbrella liability insurance? This is a question that comes out of 2020.
Conversation about the pros and cons of corporation: piercing the corporate veil; injunctions; acting independent of the corporation.
Legal Steps and Choices Handout: Activists often take everything to trial and forces them to fight every motion and forces the entity to give up the case. Locally our police, especially Connor Daily is a model of law enforcement respecting 1st amendment rights.
Talked about communicating with police about intended actions.
Question about what Paul R. thinks about what we are doing. We may be asking the county to do things that are against the state laws of preemption. i.e.: Net Pens issue.
Under the law we have the right to work to change the law.
Under the Bill of Rights no corporation will be allowed to do harm. This may make the county vulnerable to law suits.
We want the county to make laws to prevent harm.
Public Disclosure Law –(Freedom of Information Act) –FOIAadvocates.com, WA Attorney General Website, POCLAD – has a manual on how to obtain corporate records.
Olympicpeninsulalaw.com – writings, training guides.
Other Laws – RCW 4960 – Human Rights Commission –independent body with subpoena power.
Attorney Generals office – consumer rights – mediation programs.
You can always make a police report of a crime. There is nothing that stops you from calling the police and say I am choking from the fumes from the mill.
Next Study Group will be at 413 Umatilla at 5:30 on Tuesday 3/19, 385-7054. San Juan to Umatilla, green house with black trim on left before going up the hill. Come in on the right side of the house when facing it.
Next GA on Saturday 3/30 at QUUF, 9:30-11:30AM, 2333 San Juan Ave.
– Julia Cochrane Minute taker
Community Rights of Jefferson County
3/30/2013 Minutes of the General Assembly
Present: Frank – facilitator, Niles – stack taker, Rick –Time Keeper, Julia – scribe, Mike, Pete, Mike R., O’Neill,
Small list of people interested in going – 11 people. Julia will forward Dem. School invite to Paul C. email list. Possible dates are 6-8, 9; 6-28, 29 Several people are interested in being on a Dem. School committee. Max. 25 people. $ for this sent directly to Dem. School. (later found out this was incorrect). Mike, Norm, O’Neill and Julia will be the comm.
Website: Julia will track down Ellen for website. And catch up with Matt.
Names of people and organizations: Julia being emailed them and will publicize.
List Serve List:
Do you agree that your email address is accessible by other people, if not please let us know. O’Neill – has the list or access to it along with Matt. List serve was for meeting minutes and announcements and a few other things like GMO info. Maybe website needs to be the focal point so that people do not get inundated. Study group minutes go to whole group.
Proposal for Treasury Procedures: Presented by Julia (Passed by consensus of those present).
The procedure for the handling of the Comm. Rights coal.of jefco wa money is as follows:
1. all checks received will be copied before deposit
2. all cash received will be recorded in a receipt book, copy given to donor.
3. Petty cash received at meetings will be recorded in that meetings minutes and petty cash or other monies received at events will be recorded in the next GA minutes.
4. All funds dispersed will be recorded in a timely minute and receipts etc. kept by treasurer.
5. All transactions will be posted in an excel spread sheet.
Farm Survey Proposal:Presented by Rick (Passed by consensus of those present).
The Study Group proposes that we sponsor a presentation of the Jefferson County Farmer Survey 2012 Report recently conducted by Citizens for Local Food. This would be our invitation to the wider Jefferson County community to join us in our work.
It was decided that an evening during the week would be fine.
The intent is to have it sometime in April.
Speaker Proposal:Presented by Frank. (Passed by consensus of those present).
As part of our ongoing effort to educate ourselves and as outreach to the wider community, we propose bringing speakers to a venue to speak about the following Jefferson County Issues.
GMO (seeds) – Rick
Pit to Pier Project – Mike and Frank
Net Pens – Jo Q. will be asked.
The study Group will invite people to speak. Other issues may be addressed later, as the GA sees fit.
Tentative Events calendar: Next GA 4/13 9:30 at QUUF
Farm Survey – April
Pit to Pier – May
Democracy School – June
GMO – June
Net Pens – July
Sample invitation will be presented to study group – Tuesday 5:30 – PT Community Center
We are going to get this problem solved and get rid of these… corp. and find a process to pass on to our children. Reach out to younger groups.Young people would hook in if it includes children right to constant food and a home.Meetings I attend are a series of random dots. Today seemed like solid progress in developing a picture.This appears to be a governing group that is deciding what to do. You are going in the right direction to pull other people in.We appear to be coalescing and thing are solidifying about the underlying issues. Am concerned about the website. A list serve is not a website.We are part of grass-roots democracy and democracy has to be learned a new each generation.
Julia Cochrane – recorder of minutes