Record of April 17 IUY General Meeting

Indivisible – Upper Yellowstone
Monday April 17, 2017
Livingston Food Resource Center, 202 South Second
Chaired by Nelson King and Dixie Hart, 14 attendees

Report on Actions/Events

HB 83 – The continuation of SB 305 in the house, complete with governor Bullock’s ‘adjustments’ failed to make it to the house floor; house Republicans refused to pass it out of committee. Effectively the “vote by mail” issue is dead. Group sentiment was strongly in favor of using this ugly politicking as an element in election talking points.

We discussed at some length the upcoming special election and the role IUY can/should play in working with or for candidates. For the most part it was agreed that IUY itself should not endorse or promote individual candidates. This was seen as the role of political parties. IUY members, of course, often do participate directly in campaigns and candidate promotion. IUY can endorse election conditions – get out the vote, voting by mail, etc. – and officially promote election issues. Continue reading

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Indivisible-Upper Yellowstone Monthly Meeting

Review of actions (Voting by mail issue). New action issues. Report on the volunteer work. Organizational business.

Date and Time: Monday  April 17, 2017, 6:30
Location: Livingston Food Resource Center,  202 South Second, Livingston MT

Contact: Dixie Hart 222-0294

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Action: HB 83 Contact Your Legislator

“Last week Gov. Bullock gave the Legislature another chance to empower voters during the upcoming special election by allowing our counties the choice to make this an all-mail election. With his amendments to HB 83, my election clean-up bill now contains the language to mail a ballot to every eligible Montana voter ahead of May 25th,” Rep. Bryce Bennett (D-Missoula) said via email.

Unfortunately, Speaker Knudsen (R-Culbertson) is playing political games by refusing to schedule this bill for a debate on the House floor, which is why I need your help.

If we want to see turnout high and our democracy strong I need you to take action today. Please to  CONTACT YOUR LEGISLATORS TODAY  them that you want to see a debate on this important issue.

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Alert: Mail Voting for Special Election Revival?

Governor Bullock has pulled a seldom used “amendatory veto” where he specifies what should be in a bill before he will sign it. In this case on the vote by mail bill (SB 305) that was tabled in committee before floor debate or vote, has been slightly revised and resubmitted by the governor. It’s up to the House GOP to decide how to proceed. We know very little about the possibilities.

Tell us what you know, suggest possible things we can do.

Where:   Go to IUY Website – Issues Forum
When:   Now

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Gorsuch Vote – Final Protest

Although the final outcome of the vote for Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch may be scripted, in our growing tradition of taking advantage of moments, not just wins or losses – now, for the pending final votes this Thursday-Friday, is the time to contact our (currently) two members of Congress, Daines and Tester – and register your opinion.

Date and Time: Now, to the final vote

Daines – CALL at 587-3446 and ask him to tell McConnell not to invoke the ‘nuclear option’. If a nominee can’t get sixty votes, it’s time to change the nominee, not the rules.

Tester – CALL at 586-4450 and THANK HIM for standing up for Montana against corporate dominance, and for women’s rights, human rights, and the environment by voting NO on Gorsuch.

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IUY Meeting: Work to Do

Work to do and how to communicate among ourselves: A brainstorming session among volunteers and members on how Indivisible-Upper Yellowstone should handle issues and actions, including the process for selection of issues and communications among us to develop plans and turn them into actions.

Date and Time: Monday  April 3, 2017  6:30PM
Location: Food Resource Center, 202 South Second, Livingston

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Final Shot at Breaking SB 305 from Committee

Despite rumors and hearsay, the bill SB 305 is still tied up in committee. Time is running out. Mike Bunker has asked that we apply what pressure we can:
“There will be an attempt to blast SB-305 out of the Judiciary committee tomorrow.  Please leave a message for Rep. Alan Redfield urging him to support the motion to blast SB-305 out of committee at 406-444-4800.”  

Date and Time: NOW

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How Should We Communicate Among Ourselves?

Since our meeting on Monday (March 20), I’ve been working on finishing the Indivisible-Upper Yellowstone website and forum. There have been technical glitches (of course) but the main thing bugging me was the question – Among ourselves, how do we best communicate about issues and actions?

Issues and Actions will be the, what, of our group: Lifeblood, essential work, main task…? This means that almost every day we will be faced by new or resurging issues that one way or another we, as a group, will need to learn about and decide if they are: 1. Important enough to us and 2. Something we can or should do something about. If an issue proves to be important and doable, then we need to turn it into action. But what kind of action: Demonstration, letter to the editor, call-in, email etc.? This is called selecting tactics. Assuming there are viable tactics, the action has to be scheduled, logistics worked out, people notified. Then we go out and DO something, which in turn should be documented and hopefully given some follow-up. There’s a cycle here, which given the political realities, will have to be repeated often and for at least two years, and likely, four years.

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Montana Specific Protest on House AHCA Vote

Where:   Montana House Member Office (202) 225-3251
When:   ASAP – Before the House vote on AHCA

Dixie Hart had a suggestion this morning – as yet more “versions” of the AHCA surfaced to accommodate the “no government in health care” faction of the GOP. It occurred to her that as one million Montana people currently without a representative in the House, we have been effectively disenfranchised from this momentous decision (vote). Here’s her idea for an ALERT:

“I decided to go ahead and call the switchboard in D.C., (202)224-3121 and express my frustration about not having representation in the House when legislation on a bill as critical as healthcare is being voted on. I asked the staffer if they could tape a note to the empty chair of the Montana U.S. house member that says, “Vote NO on the unhealthy AHCA”. The switchboard operator said he couldn’t do it, but put me through to the Montana House member office in D.C. I made the same request to the staffer, asking her to tape the note to the Montana House members seat on the floor where the vote will take place and she said she would.

I think we should get an email out to our Indivisible members and ask everyone to call either the D.C. switchboard (202)224-3121 or the D.C. Montana House Member Office (202)225-3211 and express your concern about not having representation in the U.S. House of Representatives, and ask that a note be taped to the chair of the Montana House Member on the floor where the vote will take place that says “Vote NO on AHCA”.  Lets see if these notes actually get to the floor and what that looks like on camera!!!!!”


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Support SB 330 Climate Change/PACE program

From Governor Steve Bullock…

I am asking you to take action towards combating climate change and investing in Montana’s renewable energy industry by contacting the Montana Legislature, today.
I believe Montanans should determine our energy future through a balanced and responsible plan that provides good-paying jobs for Montanans, strengthens rural communities and supports our schools, all while safeguarding our quality of life.
Last June, I released my Energy Blueprint for the state’s energy future, which builds on our previous accomplishments to drive economic growth by improving Montana’s traditional base of energy while sparking a new generation of clean technology businesses.
My Energy Blueprint is designed to help our state move strategically into the energy future by expanding Montana’s energy presence in the region, further realizing the potential for wind a
nd solar power, and improving energy efficiency.

Among my energy proposals for this Legislative Session is Senate Bill 330, sponsored by Senator Chas Vincent. SB 330 would authorize allow Montana local governments to establish voluntary residential and commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) programs. PACE programs are an innovative way for local communities to finance low-cost, long-term funding options for properties to develop energy efficiency, renewable energy, and water conservation projects.
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