1997-03 Newsletter
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by Carol Simard

  1. The Libertarian Party of Brevard (LPB) met on March 24, 1997, at the Bagel World & Deli in Satellite Beach. The purpose of this meeting was to unite local Libertarians and discuss what we can and wish to accomplish with the LPB in the future. The meeting began at 7:20 PM. The following 26 people attended** (see attached sheet for address/phone/email):

    Kevin Capps, John Russell, Dan Goodman, Vance Porter, Edward Pervin, Joanne Burton, Ann Cornett, Wes Sorby,Ann Schroeder, Jack Geidel, John Leach, Jerry Barvitshie, David Chanley, Ron Danforth,Michael Holmes, Jack Padilla, David Hobbs Travis Hobbs, Aron Travis, David Miller, Brian Mos, Ric Roberts, Rick Smith, David Boskind, Glenn Pinfield, Carol Simard

    **Two people in attendance said they heard about the meeting through the announcements placed in the Melbourne Times and Florida Today! Looks like it's worth the effort and $0.32 stamps.
  2. Officer Elections. We'll probably elect officers at the May meeting. Once officers are elected, the LPB will be "affiliated" and official. Then we can do various things like get election information from the County Board of Supervisors, apply for tax-exempt status, etc.
  3. The following OLD BUSINESS was discussed. Persons needing to take action are underlined:
    1. I reviewed old LPB files (pre-1993) and got lots of good information on how the party was run in the past (fund raising, promotional activities, and other ideas). CLOSED.
    2. Wayne Harley was to send the LPB email address and phone number to Libertarian Party of Florida (LPF) so they can update the LP home page. Wayne not here so item still open. (Feb 24 - OPEN)
    3. John Geltemeyer was to send the Pervins the World's Smallest Political Quiz cards. Cards sent. CLOSED.
    4. I worked on LPB flyer to post on bulletin boards (college campuses, community centers, local businesses, etc.). Gave the revised copy to Kevin Capps who has a lot more artistic capability! Kevin will fix it up for next meeting. Once we get a good looking flyer we can mass produce it and distribute accordingly. (Feb 24 - OPEN)
    5. John and Ann Cornett offered a phone line (255-2105) and John Geltemeyer offered an email account (lpbrevard@aol.com). Everyone encouraged to use both as a mw the brochures I brought in and decide which ones to order. Will probably just delay this until an "advertising committee" is formed and let them decide. These are a must at Operation Politically Homeless (OPH) booths, and any other gatherings. I did bring OPH booth kit that Kurt Annaheim sent down from Daytona for our use. For those not familiar with OPH, it was designed by the Advocates for Self-government, a non-profit educational Libertarian organization. It's centered around the World's Smallest Political Quiz which is a 10-question quiz designed to show your political leanings. It often shows people they're Libertarians. It's a good opportunity to introduce people to Libertarianism and get names of future members. CLOSED.
    6. Kevin Capps checked on advertising prices in local papers such as the Little Paper, Thrifty Nickel, Satellite Beach Orbiter, etc. We agreed to hold off on advertising until we get some money. For now we'll go the free route. CLOSED.
    7. John Geltemeyer was to check prices for LP banners. John's been out of country for last three weeks and not here so item still open. (Feb 24- OPEN)
    8. Dan Goodman found out the county does not provide written information on the different political parties in the Voter Registration Office (they used to do this). He also called to "ask for information on the Libertarian Party" as "someone interested in registering as one" with the intent on finding out what registration officials are telling the public about the LP. Dan said they were very polite and gave him a name and number of a local contact for the party. After officer elections, we'll provide them with the Chair's name and the LPB number and email address. (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    9. Wayne Harley will check local banks for LPB account. Wayne not here so still open. (Feb 24 - OPEN)
    10. I checked on getting the LPB tax-exempt status so we don't have to pay taxes when we purchase items. Tax Collector will get back with me. (Feb 24 - OPEN)
    11. Kevin Capps talked with the Keep Brevard Beautiful representative about getting the LPB a stretch of road for the Adopt-a-Road program. Preliminary info is that we pay a one-time fee of $50, select a stretch of road, clean it at least quarterly, and they'll put our name on the "Adopt-a-Road" sign. He's still getting more info. (Feb 24 - OPEN)
    12. John Geltemeyer got the list of local Libertarians from Wayne Harley and divvied it out to the 10 people attending the first meeting; each person called approximately 30 Libertarians telling them the Brevard party was starting up again and gave meeting information. This obviously was successful as we had 26 people attend this meeting! I didn't mention it at the meeting but the callers (Barbara Moses, Ann Cornett, John Cornett, Ed Pervin, Martha Pervin, Wayne Harley, and Kevin Capps) need to let me know the status of each person on their list (are they interested but could not attend, not interested at all, work or school on Mondays, etc.). Also need to know who you did or didn't contact (left message on machine, no answer, no phone number, etc.). Dan Goodman already provided this info and it's real hand--we need it to update the database. (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    13. John Geltemeyer was to write up a small piece for the Florida Liberty, letting everyone know we started meeting again, and announce our next meeting date, time and location. The Florida Liberty is a bi-monthly newsletter and it doesn't come out again until April. He will write the article for the April issue. (Feb 24 - OPEN)
    14. I checked on Revolutionary War-style costume rental prices and availability for a possible Tax Protest in April. $75 for a George Washington costume (includes everything and can keep for 2-3 days. Decided to hold off on purchases until we get more money. CLOSED.
    15. David Hobbs agreed to start developing a LPB Website. David Chanley offered to help. This will really get us somewhere. We can link up with various other sites (National LP, LPF, Brevard County Elections, etc.). (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    16. Talked about the need to start setting up OPH booths at local events. We'll get more involved with this when we set up a committee in the future. CLOSED.
    17. I sent requests to both the FL Today and the Melbourne Times to announce our March meeting. They complied and we got two interested people at the meeting because of it. I'll send in another one for the April meeting. I will also send in some information to get the LPB in the Fact Book, a yearly publication by the Florida Today. (Feb 24 - OPEN)
    18. Start a letter writing seminar to get regular presence in the newspapers. Can do this either at normal monthly meetings or at separate pre-arranged meetings. Idea is to write several letters on a few hot topics and submit to newspaper editorial pages. Noted that Barbara Moses wrote a letter on re-legalization of drugs and it was the FL Today Letter of the Day on Mar 22. Congratulations Barbara! We need to keep this up. (Feb 24 - OPEN)
  4. The following NEW BUSINESS was discussed. Persons needing to take action are underlined:
    1. Discussed the possibility of starting "Friends of Liberty." Get together socially to have a good time and just talk!! No business, just fun. If anyone's interested, start it up. CLOSED.
    2. We need to start thinking of ways to raise funds. In the past, members saved their aluminum cans and donated them to the party (they brought them to the meetings and one person was responsible for turning them in) and also rented a booth at the Eau Gallie Flea Market and sold all their old stuff, donating the returns to the party. The idea of Spaghetti Dinner was brought up and Jack Padilla agreed to check with the VFW Post in Satellite Beach on the cost of renting their hall--or bartering for some type of service in return (cleaning, mowing, etc., again we're poor!) More ideas: a 50/50 Raffle at each meeting, a donations jar at the meetings, and dues. (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    3. Passed around duties descriptions of the officer positions (Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary, and Treasurer) for reference. Again, we'll elect officers at May meeting so start considering whether you'd like to take one of these positions on. CLOSED
    4. Discussed future meeting location/time/day. Consensus was to keep it the way it is for now. CLOSED.
    5. Tax Protest on April 15th. Post Offices in Brevard will not stay open late for last-minute filers. We did agree though it would still be beneficial to do a tax protest at closing time at the busiest Post Office (probably either the new Suntree PO or the Melbourne PO). Anyone interested in participating, call the LPB number and leave a message. CLOSED.
    6. Vietnam Veteran's Reunion, Apr 18-20. Talked about setting up an OPH booth at this event. I called the organizer and am awaiting an answer. Someone objected to the LPB being associated with a veteran's group (including the VFW mentioned above) on the grounds that Libertarians and vets fundamentally don't see eye-to-eye. He said there was trouble from the Vietnam Vets during a Persian Gulf War protest the Libertarians were participating in several years back. Unfortunately, this turned into somewhat of a heated discussion. It was agreed that we would continue pursuing this event, however it is coming up real soon and we're not quite organized yet. I will get an answer from the vets and call around to see if anyone is interested in participating. (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    7. Website Development Committee. We already solved this earlier in night. David Hobbs will head this committee (our first official committee!) and start developing a homepage for the LPB. CLOSED.
  5. The floor was opened for discussion.
    1. A new member discussed his feelings about the Libertarian stand on immigration and open borders--this brought about a lot of good discussion but I asked that we finish up official business before discussing political/philosophical issues. I reminded everyone that the "official" LPB meeting is for party business only. Once the meeting is adjourned (and the quicker the better) we can sit around and talk politics, issues, and other neat stuff.
    2. David Chanley recommended we develop rapport with United We Stand America (UWSA) as they are an educational organization (as opposed to a political party). We may be able to establish a cross-exchange of speakers at each others meetings. The more people and organizations that know what we stand for the better. He also said they are in the process of changing their name to disassociate themselves with Ross Perot, their founding father. Get a hold of David or the local chapter of UWSA if you want to suggest a new name.
    3. We talked in the past about setting up an OPH booth at the Melbourne Gun Shows. Jack Padilla will find out when the next quarterly event is. Someone recommended the possibility of putting Libertarian literature on the John Birch Society (JBS) table at these shows. We need to check with the JBS. (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    4. The VFW is having a parade in Merritt Island in April and finishing it up with a picnic. Jack Padilla will check with them and see if we can set up an OPH booth. (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    5. Kevin Capps discovered the BCC library has a local Libertarian information page on the internet. Once we elect officers, John Russell will make sure the correct information is there. (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    6. Someone said there's a fife and drum band located in the area. We may want to consider hiring them someday for an event. Contact Ed Sweeney in Palm Bay. (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    7. Ric Roberts works for WFIT and he's going to find out if LPB meetings and events can be broadcast as a public service announcement (free!). (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    8. I apologize, but someone brought up Ed Clark's "Straight Talk" but I can't recall what it was about. We will discuss again at next meeting. (Mar 24 - OPEN)
    9. Announced the Florida State LP Convention is happening May 24-25 (with a social hour Friday evening on the 23th) at the Sheraton Orlando North Hotel. Guest speakers are Jacob "Bumper" Hornberger, Dr. Mary Ruwart, and Grant Maley. Call (407) 578-3797 for more info.
  6. I'd like to thank everyone who came out to the meeting. Turnout was phenomenal! If we have 26 people at every meeting, we will make serious headway in the name of Liberty here in Brevard County. We have one of the largest number of registered Libertarian voters in the state so we're fortunate to have that pool of phone numbers and/or addresses. If you were a bit overwhelmed by the meeting, I apologize. We are starting over from scratch and have tons of stuff to talk about and organize. Once we get officers elected, committees named and organized, things will flow more smoothly. The agenda will be smaller and we'll have time to sit and discuss in detail how we're going to do business. They'll be a lot more fun, I promise.
  7. I'd like to set some ground rules for future meetings. First, stick to business! That means discuss only things that we as a county affiliate can do to promote liberty, field potential local candidates, and increase party membership. If you're in doubt, ask yourself, "Is this a problem that we as a county party can solve?" or "Is this an idea/issue that we as a county party can promote?" Remember that this is a business meeting and we have (or will have) a charter to follow. If we stick to business and keep the meetings to approx. one hour, it gives us more time to socialize and talk philosophy/politics after the meeting. Second, try not monopolize the floor! We as Libertarians love to speak our minds, and all would like a chance to do so, but we only have a limited amount of time at each meeting. So please, give others an opportunity to talk and participate. And finally, there will be no advertising products at meetings. Again, this is a business meeting, not a forum for selling/purchasing goods. Besides, it makes some people uncomfortable and I don't want to lose members because of it. If you want to leave your business card on one of the display tables, that's fine.
  8. I don't want to leave you with the impression teans of communicating with each other. Pass this number and address out to anyone interested in learning more about what we're doing here in Brevard. CLOSED.
  9. I'd like to personally thank Ann Cornett for her generosity, not only for letting us "occupy" her restaurant for the evening, but for providing coffee and bagels--she really didn't have to do that. That was all her idea and out of her own pocket. She even let us use real coffee mugs! Thanks Ann!!
  10. Meeting adjourned at approx. 9:30 PM. Our next meeting is April 28, 1997, at Bagel World in Satellite Beach at 7 PM. For those newcomers, Bagel World is located at 1301 S. Patrick Drive, Satellite Beach, in the shopping center just north of the Satellite Beach Fire Dept. Bagel World is on the east side of S. Patrick Drive.  See you there.

SPECIAL NOTE: Just talked with Wayne Harley, the LPF Treasurer, and he said we will need to identify LPB representatives who will be attending the State Convention. We also need to elect officers prior to the convention. In order to do this, we will have our May meeting a week or two earlier than normal--we can elect officers and select rep's for the convention. Brevard will be a player at the convention this year!

 

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