Minutes of September Board Meeting

League of Women Voters of Howard County, Inc.
Board Meeting Minutes
via Zoom
September 10, 2020

In attendance: Cynthia Williams, Barbara Russell, Virginia Kirk, Lucie Geinzer, Krista Threefoot, , Linda Wengel, Linda Frascarella, Sandy Levy, Laura Mettle.
Absent: Nancy Carlsen, Michelle Rice Trotter, Amber Treat, Cheryle Wharton
 Meeting called to order at 7:04 pm by President Cynthia Williams.

Changes to Agenda: There were no changes to the agenda. Linda Wengel moved and Sandy Levy seconded that the agenda be approved. Motion passed.

President’s Report: Cynthia Williams referred Board to her written report. The Candidate Forum on October 2 was discussed. Questions will come from partners (Horizon Foundation, PTA Council of Howard County, and the Association of Community Services of Howard County. See full President’s Report for specifics.

Secretary’s Report: Virginia Kirk – Lucie Geinzer moved, Linda Wengel seconded, that the June 2020 meeting minutes be approved. Motion passed.  

Treasurer’s Report: Barbara Russell – The total checking/savings balance as of August 31, 2020, was $18,385.36. Dues paid so far: $7,175.00.  She noted that approximately $430 has been raised by the tee-shirt sale. The insurance has been paid. She also reviewed the total fundraising effort for supporting the promotion and/or printing of the Voters’ Guide.  So far a total of approximately $1,450 has been raised for this purpose. Laura Mettle discussed options for advertising the Voters’ Guide in the Flyer, the Howard County Times, and various Patch publications. The total estimated costs would be over $1,000 for this type of advertising. As the Guide won’t be available until the end of September, the Board agreed to postpone a decision. 

There was a follow-up question about the mass email of information about the Guide to all registered voters in Howard County. Laura Mettle will request email addresses from the Board of Elections this week. Barbara will file the Treasurer’s Report documents for review.

Program Report: Krista Threefoot referred the Board to her Program Report for specifics on Unit Meetings, Local League Program Chair Meeting, and the  T-Shirt fundraiser. Zoom Unit meetings schedule and topics:

  • September 24, 7:00pm, Voting Information
  • October 22, 7:00pm, Ballot information
  • November 19, 7:00pm, Policing community forum

Directors’ Reports

Action: Linda Wengel reported on the three new Council Resolutions and requested Board direction on action to be taken, if any. See full Directors’ Report for details:

  • CR 143-2020 – A resolution declaring support for the phased in $15 minimum wage. No action necessary.
  • CR 51-2020 – An act prohibiting Howard County Department of Corrections from accepting into custody persons for immigration issues detained by federal immigration law enforcement. The League did support the Sanctuary City bill. Linda Wengel is not sure we have a stand on CR 51.
  • CR 142-2020 – Creation of a racial justice taskforce. Linda Wengel will send a letter of support.


Communications—Internal: Nancy Carlsen (absent) –Cynthia Williams discussed the need to find someone to take over this position. She will contact members who have expressed an interest and let the Board know the outcome. She also requested and received a general consensus that each month we post on the LWVHC website the Board Meeting minutes, the President’s Report, and the Directors’ Reports.

Communications – External: Laura Mettle. Although External Communications was not on the Agenda, the Board continued the discussion of printing the Voters’ Guide. Linda Wengel noted that the Guide is a signature service the League is known for and we should focus on advertising it, as opposed for example 411. The general consensus was that we advertise both our Guide and Vote 411.  This discussion was in the context of how we should advertise the Guide. Cynthia Williams asked Board members to help estimate the number of issues we might need if we were to print them. Frascarella will estimate many would be needed for the Library System and Linda Wengel for senior living sites. Cynthia Williams has ideas for possible advertisers and will make calls. 

Cynthia Williams will send to the Board the voter information sheet that she created.

Education: Linda Frascarella referred to her Directors’ Report for details about the virtual fall semester for the Howard County School System. She also noted the voter registration and voting PowerPoint she created for the Oakland Mills group via Zoom on August 27 and the one she is currently working on: Being an Informed Voter for September 24 at 7:00, also Zoom.

Environment: Sandy Levy reported that Howard Community College’s Sustainability Day is scheduled for Oct. 21. The College has requested the League do a 10 minutes presentation on voting. She will follow up with the College on specifics. She also noted that Sunrise Howard County has contacted her. See the Environment Director’s Report for details regarding the many bills, actions, and activities related to environmental issues locally, in the State, and nationally. 

Fundraising: Michelle Rice Trotter and Amber Treat (absent)

Membership: Lucie Geinzer noted the various letters she has written related to membership and fundraising.  See the Directors’ Reports for more details.   

Publications: Amber Treat (absent)   

Voter Services: Cheryle Wharton (absent) See the Director’s Reports for details of activities.

 Unfinished Business

  • Voter Guide Printing – see above
  • What to do about the Voter – see discussion above in Communications – Internal.
  • Decision about picking up ballots. The general consensus was that this be an informal activity that members can undertake as they wish.
  • Laying a wreath and possible contribution. The general consensus was that LWVHC should participate.
  • Calendar update – Cynthia Williams has updated the calendar and has sent it to Amber Treat, recognizing that it is fluid, given the circumstance.


New Business

  • Ballot questions: This topic was covered in various sections. See above.
  • Horizon Foundation: Cynthia Williams believes the Horizon Foundation will be a great new partner.
  • LWVMD—Cynthia Williams sent the Board the form, consensus needed by October 5, 2020.
  • Re-posting – Cynthia Williams requested guidance. The consensus was that it is okay to re-post community service announcements on a case-by-case basis as long as these announcements are non-partisan.
  • Any questions regarding Unit or Candidate Forum meetings? None
  • The Voter deadline is 10/15/2020

Adjournment: Lucie Geinzer moved, Linda Wengel seconded, that the meeting be adjourned. Motion passed. The meeting was adjourned at 8:41pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Virginia Kirk, Secretary

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