POLK COUNTY DEC NEWSLETTER
September 2009 Volume 9
THE CHAIRS MESSAGE
One of the most important issues facing the House and the Senate today is Healthcare Reform. Almost everyone agrees that some type of reform is needed; yet how it will be done and how it will be paid for is the question being debated in Washington D.C. The President has promised that Congress will have a bill ready for his signature by October.
There have been community forums throughout the country in recent days, bringing people together to share their own personal stories of how they are affected by their current healthcare situation. http://www.healthreform.gov/ is one website that offers reports and up-to-date information.
Mothers and fathers, earning little over minimum wage for an employer who offers group medical insurance, cannot afford to cover the family due to high cost of premiums; the husband and wife who depend on his group coverage and hope that he doesn’t get sick or injured and lose what coverage they have; or the single, middle-aged woman who is covered by her employers insurance and gets laid off isn’t eligible yet for Medicare; or the newly graduated students who are looking for jobs, and can’t be covered with their parents anymore. These are just some of the stories of people who HAVE access to coverage – and know that at any given moment it can all go away. Other stories abound about people who don’t have any type of insurance coverage or any access to medical care other than walking into an emergency room.
Locally, we as a Party cannot be complacent to let others speak for us. We ALL must take action, and make sure that we have a health plan in place that includes a public option. We MUST be vocal, we MUST write letters, and we MUST make phone calls. When you are engaged in conversation with people about healthcare, refer to President Obama’s mandate, which include the following principles:
· Reduce long-term growth of health care costs for businesses and government
· Protect families from bankruptcy or debt because of health care costs
· Guarantee choice of doctors and health plans
· Invest in prevention and wellness
· Improve patient safety and quality of care
· Assure affordable, quality health coverage for all Americans
· Maintain coverage when you change or lose your job
· End barriers to coverage for people with pre-existing medical conditions
Contact Senator Bill Nelson and tell him to support a plan that includes the public option and these principles. Call him at (202) 224- 5274 in D.C. or http://www.billnelson.senate.gov
Another website where you can read more information and offer comments is: http://my.barackobama.com/page/content/health-care-action-center
A MESSAGE FROM YOUR
MAN & WOMAN
Committee Man & Woman Report
Hello fellow Democrats,
Summer has come to an end for most of us, and unfortunately we are still debating the healthcare reform. Please take time to research the various points to the many options that are being debated, and let’s make sure we are all supporting President Obama. We need to provide a positive image of cohesiveness, so the ‘other party’ does not have anything to hang their hat on in the upcoming elections in 2010. There is much work to be done, and we need to work together to achieve our original mission of change ………….YES, WE CAN!
Many things are happening right now with our area clubs, so please support all of their efforts. The LDC Committee for Change (the PAC established with the help of the Lakeland Democrat Club’s officers and members) has a big event October 3rd at the Fantasy of Flight. Individual tickets are $100 or tables of ten sponsorships (which includes VIP reception tickets with the candidates and elected officials) for $1500. If you are interested we will have tickets available at the DEC meeting Monday. Auburndale will be holding a fund-raiser in celebration of United Nations Day, October 24th, from 2:00-5:00. Cost is $20 and please make plans to come and taste the various food samples from around the world. If you would like to purchase tickets, please contact Jessica Barrett to obtain them.
We are rounding the corner from the deadline for the Fair Redistricting Petitions. If you have collected signed petitions, please get those turned in to Jean Harden so she can input the information on her list and in turn send them to the proper authority.
We are gearing up for the State Convention at the Disney Yacht Club coming up in October. We appreciate the many DEC members who will be attending, and I know we will all find the educational/training opportunities very worthwhile as well as the chance to be up close and personal with candidates from all over the State. If you have not booked your rooms, you may want to do that while they are still available.
We are working on a strategy to begin filling the various precinct positions in Polk County . We will soon be providing you with a list of the various precincts that are in need of representation, so if you know of enthusiastic Democrats from those areas, it would be most helpful if you could share their information with us. Our goal when we accepted this position was to build a strong representation in Polk County and this is part of our plan of action.
One last item……..please visit the websites of the many Democrats running for office. All of the candidates need your supports………whether it is a donation of your time or cash, please do something to help get our Democrats elected. We will have petitions for Kendrick Meek at the Monday general meeting, and we are asking that each of you please sign his candidate petition. Please pick up the candidate petitions as you enter the meeting.
Thank you for all you do to make the Democrat Party strong.
Dean and Charlene Hypes
All submissions should be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Club reports should be submitted by the first weekend of each month, and it is very is important to submit your report to assist in length of DEC meetings. Even if your club is on vacation, please share anything that is going on in your communities
Auburndale Area Democratic Club (Serving Auburndale and surrounding area): Submitted by Richard Isinghood
The AADC had its luncheon Wednesday, August 19th at 11:30 at Richard's Coffee Shop at the airport between Auburndale and Lake Alfred . Twelve enthusiastic members and interested people assembled to discuss health care and high speed rail and CSX issues.
The September 1, 2009 meeting was at the Auburndale Library. Supervisor of Elections Lori Edwards, a candidate for House District 12, presented a talk of the issues that are of prime concern for the local Democrats. She gave a background on her accomplishments while a member of the state house for the area. A question and answer period highlighted the many issues that members have. As we do with all presenters, she was presented a certificate inducting her into the celebrated AADC Don Key Club.
Highlights of the meeting.
We were saddened to hear of the passing of Richard Brumbaugh, who was deeply involved in politics for much of his life, an asset to our AADC and the DEC groups and a devoted family man. Our condolences to Jane and their family.
Jean Harden emphasized the need to get the signatures for redistricting.
We have pledged $50 cash or $50 in supplies to four local elementary schools; Auburndale Central, Caldwell , Lake Alfred and Lena Vista. We will do a small part in this time of economic public school crisis.
Florida Democratic Party 2009 State Conference: Leadership To Change Florida: Join the Florida Democratic Party at Disney World for our 2009 State Conference to help continue our momentum to bring change to Florida in 2010
We will be having a fund raiser October 24, United Nations Day, celebrating the end of summer, coming of ghosts for Halloween and United Nations Day. We will be having our fundraiser at the Auburndale Senior Center . 2 to 5 pm. One of the highlights will be the foods of different cultures. There will be dress, displays and customs and dances depicting many of the world's peoples. Unite with us on this day to celebrate our unique differences and similarities. If you have any unusual item, dress, picture, custom to share, plan to bring and proudly display your treasure of your heritage.
Lakeland: Submitted by Regina Long
The Lakeland Democratic Club elected a new slate of officers September 3, 2009. The new officers, who won by unanimous vote, are:
President - Andy Crossfield
Treasurer - Charlene Hypes
Secretary - Dean Hypes
Ed Chambers remained as Vice President. Also, Lois
Schmachtenberg was appointed Membership Chair.
Guest speaker, Dr. Ed Lamm, did a fabulous job discussing healthcare reform. Regina Long stated that U.S. Senator Bill Nelson has mailed a letter to President Obama. The banks have received billions of dollars in bailout money, yet many of these banks are refusing to administer a federal small business loan program to help small businesses. Senator Nelson urges President Obama to direct the Treasury Secretary, in consultation with the Small Business Administrator, to immediately take action to increase participation in the SBA loan programs by TARP recipients. District 12 candidate, Doug Tudor, is celebrating his 47th birthday! Happy Birthday Doug! Check out Doug's website at teamtudor.org.
U.S. congressman Robert Wexler has endorsed District 12
candidate Lori Edwards! Take a look at Lori's website edwards2010.com.Charlene reported that the Auburndale Democratic Club is having a fundraiser on October 24th for United Nations Day at the Auburndale Senior Center from 2 - 5. A $20.00 donation is requested. Charlene urged everyone to fill out petitions to assist Kendrick Meek in being the first US Senate candidate to qualify by petition. Ed Chambers discussed the PAC dinner on October 3rd at Fantasy of Flight which is a salute to lifelong Democrats Homer Hooks and Lois Cowles Harrison. Special Presenter: U.S. Senator Bill Nelson. Several politicians have been invited. Tables are a requested donation of $1,500.00 and include ten tickets, the cocktail hour from 6 -7, table signage, program acknowledgment, and microphone acknowledgment. Dinner tickets only are a requested $100.00 donation. Ed reported the PAC needs to sell ten tables to break even. The next meeting of the LDC will be 10/1/09, 7 pm, McArthur Center , 811 South Lakeside Avenue.
Lake Wales: No report……..on vacation!
Winter Haven: No Report at time of printing
LOCAL, STATE, AND NATIONAL ISSUES
Submitted by Jean Harden
Want To Elect More Democrats? Sign the Fair Districts Florida Petitions
Fair Districts would require Congressional and Legislative districts to be contiguous, “compact, as equal in population as feasible, and where feasible must make use of existing city, county and geographical boundaries.”
The majority party in the Florida Legislature has the power to gerrymander districts. Despite having approximately 37% of the registered voters, Republicans currently occupy two-thirds of the Congressional and Legislative seats. The playing field can be leveled by passing the Fair Districts Florida ballot initiative. The next redistricting will be in 2012 following the 2010 Census.
There are two petitions, one for Congressional and one for Legislative Districts and both must be downloaded and signed. The signed petitions must be collected by October 31, 2009 to allow time for signatures to be verified by the Supervisor of Elections. Petitions with verified signature must be received by the Secretary of State before February 1, 2010, in order be placed on the 2010 General Election Ballot.
POLK COUNTY CHARTER REVIEW COMMISSION
Submitted by Jean S. Harden
The Polk County Charter Review Commission now meets regularly on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month. The meeting calendar and agendas are posted on the website but as yet no minutes are posted. Citizens may email comments and suggestions to the CRC. The emails are posted on the website. Visit the website: http://www.polkcharter.com.
Pat Burrell is the executive assistant and may be reached at 863-534-6737, or email at
Robert Connors, who was elected vice-chairman, resigned from the CRC. Rod Hudnell is now CRC vice-chairman. Kathryn J. (Jeri) Hammond of Davenport is the newly appointed CRC member. Her appointment provides representation for the Four Connors area of the Polk County .
DATES IN HISTORY
September 2, 1945 - President Harry Truman declared V-J Day (Victory over Japan Day) commemorating the formal Japanese surrender to the Allies aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay .
September 13, 1814 - The Battle of Fort Henry in Baltimore Harbor occurred, observed by Francis Scott Key aboard a ship. He watched the British attack overnight and at dawn saw the American flag still flying over the fort, inspiring him to write the verses which were later coupled with the tune of a popular drinking song and became the U.S. national anthem in 1931.
INFO ON THE 2009 CONFERENCE:
Conference Dates - October 9-11, 2009
Conference Location - The Disney Yacht & Beach Club, 1700 Epcot Resorts Boulevard, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
Hotel Reservations: Book rooms at the Disney Yacht & Beach Club by calling 407-934-3372. Ask for the Florida Democratic Party Conference rate of $199 per night. The rooms that can be currently booked are standard rooms with two beds. There are also handicapped accessible rooms by request. The last day to book rooms is September 23, 2009 but book early to ensure you will have a room.
Panel and Training Sessions - Delegates and attendees will be able to go online and signup for various panels and trainings sessions at the Conference. The signup will be on the Florida Democratic Party web site. http://www.fladems.com/
To plan your trip it is suggested arriving on Friday and departing on Sunday. You might consider extending your trip to take advantage of this significantly reduced room rate and all the attractions and distractions Walt Disney World offers. As a guest staying at a Walt Disney World resort you will be afforded several perks. The link to the hotel’s web site property: http://disneyworld.disney.go.com/resorts/yacht-club-resort/
CAMPAIGN COMMITTEE: Submitted by Walter O’Rourke
No report at printing
AFFIRMATIVE ACTION COMMITTEE: Submitted by Charlene Hypes
No report at printing
LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE: Submitted by Jean S. Harden
The 2010 Legislative Session begins Tuesday, March 2, 2010. Florida House members have already filed bills that are co-sponsored by several members of the Polk Legislative Delegation.
HB 21, co-sponsored by Kelli Stargel and John Wood creates the Florida Firearms Freedom Act that “provides that specified firearms, firearm accessories, & ammunition for personal use manufactured in state are not subject to federal law or regulation.” and extends to a number of imported items including certain ammunition, accessories
HJR 37 - JOINT RESOLUTION, Health Care Services: co-sponsored Mike Horner, Kelli Stargel and John Wood, “Proposes creation of s. 28, Art. X of State Constitution to prohibit laws or rules from compelling any person, employer, or health care provider to participate in any health care system; permit person or employer to purchase lawful health care services directly from health care provider; permit health care provider to accept direct payment from person or employer for lawful health care services; exempt persons, employers, & health care providers from penalties & fines for paying or accepting direct payment for lawful health care services; permit purchase or sale of health insurance in private health care systems; & specifies what amendment does not affect or prohibit.’
MARK YOUR CALENDAR!!!
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 3
The LDC Committee for Change will be having a dinner at the Fantasy of Flight (off I-4), catered by Texas Cattle Company.
Watch for further updates!
NO CALENDAR – PLEASE VISIT THE DEC WEBSITE FOR UPCOMING EVENTS:
INFO FROM KENDRICK’S LAST LETTER
He has raised over $3 million to date
No other non-incumbent Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate today is raising the funds necessary to grow the movement that we are building together.
No other non-incumbent Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate today is qualifying for the ballot by petition to build a campaign infrastructure in 2009 to be victorious in 2010.
No other non-incumbent Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate today has field staff in place and campaign offices open this soon before an election.
No other non-incumbent Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate today has secured the endorsements of organizations and public servants who fight for issues that concern us.
WHO IS REPRESENTING YOU?
Florida Chamber of Commerce 2009 Legislative Report Card
SD-10 -Storms – 71; SD-15 - Dockery- 46;
SD-17- Alexander - 96
HD-63 –McKeel -100; HD-64- Stargel -100; HD-65 -Wood – 100;
HD-66-Troutman - 94; HD-79 -Horner – 100
Tags: Polk Dec