Central Committee Minutes, 27 October 2001

Minutes of the Central Committee of the Libertarian Party of Maryland
Saturday, 27 October 2001

The Libertarian State Central Committee of Maryland met at Luigi Petti’s Restaurant in Baltimore, Maryland. The meeting was called to order at 11:02 am by chairman Nick Sarwark. Prior to the meeting, the following were distributed: the minutes of the 4 August 2001 Central Committee meeting; proposed Bylaw on Alternates to the National Convention; and the treasurer’s report.

Attendance: the Credentials Committee consisted of: Robert Glaser; Steve Sass; and Steve Boone. It validated that 30 Central Committee members were in attendance for the meeting. Additionally, three proxies were represented. The Central Committee rolls consist of 69 members.

Minutes: The Secretary read the minutes; the word “his” was changed to “her” with reference to Gail Mangum. The minutes were accepted as revised.

Treasurer’s report: Joe Miller presented the report for the Committee; he verbally noted that “and contributions” should be deleted from the line under Income. He noted that presently we have about $350 per month in credit card donations, which is the most we have ever had, but that we could use more; if the contribution is $10 per month or more, the contributor receives automatic MdLP and National membership renewal. The report was accepted without dissent.

Chair’s report: Nick Sarwark indicated that we continue to work on voter registrations. Over the summer, we averaged two outreach events per week. Bad news: as a result of the 9/11 tragedy, we must stand as a bulwark against the loss of our liberties. We must guard against attempts to purchase elusive security with our liberties. College outreach activities are doing well; the groups at WMC, UMBC, and UMCP are growing.

Bylaws amendment:

Append the following to the Bylaw on Alternates to the National Convention:

After the initial delegation has been selected for the national convention, additional delegates may be selected at the convention provided that they meet the following criteria: (1) The candidate must be an active dues-paying member of the national party and/or a state or local affiliate of the LP; (2) All state officers present at the convention must approve the candidate; and (3) No less than nine-tenths of the present delegation must approve the candidate. An emergency meeting may be held to discuss such a matter.

Jay Baker spoke for the proposal: by filling the MdLP delegation, the state party is strengthened. He detailed his experiences when he had joined the Pennsylvania delegation; when the chairman did not direct a position, he was able to freely vote as he wished. He believes that it is a win/win proposition. Dean Ahmad spoke against: he has probably been to more National Conventions than many present. Others can obtain a delegate by sending someone to the MdLP Central Committee meeting to get seats. There is no method to direct a delegate how to vote, other than unseating him if he does something horrendous. Traditionally, we have been a very cohesive group and quite communicative — he thinks that this proposal is a step backward. Steve Boone spoke: in 1998 at Anaheim, votes were not directed by the state chair; he supports the measure, but doesn’t like the 9/10 ratio. There is a two month lag between the Central Committee meeting and the convention; one doesn’t know what will occur in the intervening period. Lorenzo Gaztañaga spoke: he sees a fundamental flaw in that a delegate cannot be directed how to vote on an issue. We argue, but are very united.

Vote: 5 YES, 19 NO. The change is DEFEATED.

Election of Board Vacancies: All Executive Board positions are open due to the constitutional amendments adopted at the 4 August 2001 Central Committee meeting. The term of those elected today is until the Spring Central Committee meeting. Beth Newman had resigned from the Executive Board. All other current Board members were nominated: Nick Sarwark, Shannon McMenamin, Robert Glaser, Joe Miller, Steven Sass, and Chip Spangler; Glenn Howard was nominated. There were no objections to election of the Board by slate: the slate was elected unanimously.

Bylaw Addition: Dean Ahmad proposed the following:

Bylaw on Corporate Memory

1. A copy of the minutes of all meetings of the Executive Board and the Central Committee will be sent to all past Chairmen.

2. The Chairman shall appoint one or more past Chairmen and/or Secretaries to serve as a Committee of Corporate Memory and consult with them on all matters in which a knowledge of past experience will benefit the activities of the Party.

3. The Executive Board shall arrange for the preparation and maintenance of documentation on past experiences and activities as may be of benefit to the Party.

The motion carried on a voice vote.

Announcements:

Doris Gordon has a flyer for Libertarians for Life which can be used at outreach events if desired. It states that there are libertarians who are opposed to legal abortions. Keith Halderman and Susan Gaztañaga pointed out that it helped prevent people from leaving the outreach table, who then stayed to discuss other matters.

Jay Baker mentioned that he has libertarian books for sale.

Lorenzo Gaztañaga noted that our speakers are present (Gene Cisewski, Jim Lark, Geoffrey Neale, Carol Moore), and also welcomed Jesse Markowitz and Julie Smith to the convention.

Spear Lancaster thanked Rich Goldman, Adam Wirth, and Chris Phair from UMBC for campaign assistance.

Dean Ahmad plugged his book, Islam and the West: A Dialog and said that the price is $15 and that 20% of today’s receipts will go to the MdLP.

Glenn Howard is looking for indoor outreach events to help get signatures. Keith Halderman noted that gun shows are excellent outreach events, he achieved an 80% success rate for petition signatures at the Silverado show.

Steve Boone stated that petitioning opportunities are coming up; volunteers can check with him.

Doug McNeil reported on a ballot access lawsuit in Maryland. The Maryland ballot access restrictions are about the worst in the country; the Green Party is suing to eliminate the candidate signature requirement for qualified parties. The suit was filed in the Anne Arundel circuit court, and the case was (unfairly, according to McNeil) thrown out; it was appealed to the Maryland Court of Special Appeals; the Court of Appeals reached down and agreed to hear it because it raised significant constitutional issues; essentially the summary dismissal is discarded. This will be the first time it will actually be heard; oral arguments are expected to be in December; he will want a large crowd on hand for support; if lose there, will try to take it to the US Supreme Court; it is looking very positive now.

David Margolis is running for Howard County Council; he is collecting signatures now, and creating candidate brochures; is thinking about setting up tables in shopping malls. He is linking his campaign with Spear’s; he suggested that more candidates would help to get our name out.

Gerald Schneider encouraged more women and people of color to become libertarian candidates.

Steve Sass plugged his table in the back of the room (fire towels, of which the MdLP receives a donation from each sale); he is going to run a special tour of the National Aquarium, date to be determined.

Jay Baker remarked that we are exactly on schedule for convention activities.

Adjournment: the Central Committee meeting adjourned at 12:28 pm.

–Robert E. Glaser