President’s Report – Cynthia Williams
September 10, 2020 LWVHC
We haven’t had a Voter for some time, now. We need to work on a strategy to get it up and running again.
19th Amendment 100th Anniversary Celebrations
We had a very nice celebration for the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment on August 18, 2020 in front of the George Howard Building in Ellicott City. The speakers included County Executive Calvin Ball, Delegate Jessica Feldmark, County Council Chair Deb Jung, and former County Executive and Delegate, Liz Bobo. We were presented with 2 declarations and a citation. The event was well attended.
Beth Hufnagel has moved the computer into the office and we’re happy to have Gina back in the office as well.
We will be doing candidate forums for the General Election on Oct. 2nd via Zoom. Our partners will be the Association of Community Services of Howard County, the PTA Council of Howard County, and the Horizon Foundation. The invitations have gone out to the candidates, and we’re waiting to hear back regarding their availability. The Zoom rooms have been scheduled. It has been advertised to our members and to some Facebook communities. We’re speaking to our sponsors regarding what their responsibility is to be, and we’ve brought on another partner (Horizon Foundation) that will try to get us questions for the Circuit Court Judge forum (with Becca Niburg as backup). We are hoping to have the forums streamed on Facebook in addition to being posted on our website.
We will not officially be doing poll evaluations for the General through the BOE, but some of us will probably being doing them for other organizations. We have been working closely with the BOE to get the most accurate voter information for the General election.
We have sent out requests for donations in order to advertise the Voter Guide more effectively, as well as a t-shirt fundraiser. Both are doing very well so far.
Our Letter to the Editor was published in the Columbia Flyer and the Howard County Times today. We have been distributing our Voter FAQ sheet (Cheryle had it translated to Spanish) at farmer’s markets and CCC sites (when we have the volunteers or myself). It has also been given to Delegate Courtney Watson, ACS, and the Horizon Foundation for distribution. We contributed a slide to the Howard Hughes “Big” event on Friday. NeighborRide is giving out Vote411.org cards to their passengers. Attempted to get permission to hand out the Voter FAQ sheets at the landfill (they get 2,000 people in on a Saturday). After much tussling, couldn’t get permission.
We held our Retreat via Zoom over 2 nights this time. Discussed how to advertise the Voter Guide, whether or not to deliver ballots for people in nursing homes and assisted livings, what to talk to Guy Mickley (who we’ve been communicating with regarding voting info) about, doing the t-shirt fundraiser, and the signup sheet for volunteers.
National Registration Day September 22, 2020
Looks like the above will be at Howard County General Hospital headed up by Cheryle. I was hoping to have more groups participating, but it’s not worked out that way. We may get more volunteers out of it, though. We’ve been mailed posters and stickers for the event. We’ve committed to 100 registrations – basically a number pulled out of the air, but who knows? **Update: We will also be partnering with the YMCA in Howard on this day.
Besides the Hospital, Cheryle has several registration opportunities scheduled (see her report).
Get Out the Vote (GOTV) Event
The Sheriff’s Dept. has agreed to partner with us for the above event. There will be deputies located in various places in Downtown Old Ellicott City. Several businesses have been contacted and they will support the event by putting the Voter FAQ sheet in their windows. There may be donation boxes put in those shops if they allow it and containers can be found cheaply, which I may have just found. The event has been advertised using ACS, our email blast, and various Facebook Communities. Two TV news stations have been contacted in hope that they will cover the event. The elected for the Ellicott City District have been contacted. Hopefully it won’t rain.
Election Judges/Racial Equity Task Force
Cheryle, Beth, and Grace have all volunteered to be Election Judges and are going through the training. Please let me know if I missed anyone. Thanks go to all of them for their service. Laura and Beth’s names have been put forward to join the above task force that is being put together by Councilmembers Opel Jones and Christiana Rigby.
Barbara is working on it and hopes to have it completed mid-September. Question remains whether or not to print it, and if so, how many copies?
We have been requested of late to do several presentations: 2 for Oakland Mills, 1 for HCC, 2 for AAUW, the HC Library system, and Sandy will be participating in the HCC Sustainability Day.
There are 3 Unit meetings – the September and October ones are regarding voting, and the November one will include State’s Attorney Rich Gibson, Sheriff Marcus Harris, and (hopefully) Police Chief Lisa Myers. The September and October Unit meetings have Zoom rooms and have been advertised in the usual ways. If I can figure it out, they will also stream on Facebook.
Krista and I attended a webinar regarding consensus and programs. The Fall Workshop will be on Saturday, September 26, 2020 (via Zoom). We will be expected to fill reach consensus on the programs they are putting forward, and fill out the form they provide by Monday, December 14, 2020.