USC Democratic Committee Meeting Minutes July 24, 2018
Attendance: Fran Campbell, Steve Nance, Jason Fincke, Bernadette Fincke, Blaine Aikin, Terry Aikin, Deb Allen, Steven Logan, Linda Descutner, Andrew Zahalsky, George Bockosh, Ty Gellach, Maureen Shaw, David Shaw, Erin Urban, Shirley McClory, Peg Babnik, Ellen Simon, Jen Schnore, Mary McIntyre Attendance Guests: Lindsay Cashman, Rich Fitzgerald
Mary McIntyre started the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance at 7:03pm. She then introduced Rich Fitzgerald. He thanked everyone for their help in getting Conor Lamb elected last March. He also expressed the need to help Bob Casey, Tom Wolf, and Sharon Guidi with their elections this November. Rich spoke about the new energy in the Democratic Party and said that he will be at our picnic on August 5. Rich made a monetary contribution ($100) to the USC Democratic Picnic. Maureen Shaw spoke about the Our Kids Our Commitment (Allegheny County Children’s Fund Initiative). This is a proposed amendment for November’s election. She needs 40,000 signatures to have it added to the ballot. If passed, this fund will generate 18 million dollars. There are currently 30 counties that have this type of children’s fund. Maureen does not know who will be making decision as to where and how the money will be spent. Our Kids, Our Commitment Ballot Question – “Shall the Allegheny County Home Rule Charter be amended to establish the Allegheny County Children’s Fund, funded by Allegheny County levying and collecting an additional 0.25 mills, the equivalent of $25 on each $100,000 of assessed value, on all taxable real estate, beginning January 1, 2019 and thereafter, to be used to improve the well-being of children through the provision of services throughout the County including early childhood learning, after school programs, and nutritious meals?”
The nomination to approve minutes was made by Jason Fincke, seconded by Andrew Zahalsky. The minutes were approved by all.
Mary stated that only elected Committee members can vote for endorsements; but at USC Democratic meetings, everyone can vote. Peg Babnick gave the treasurer’s report. There was a balance of $3,304 with an online donation of $25. There were fees of $7.75 and $400 with a new balance of $2,921.25. Today we received a $100 donation from Rich Fitzgerald. The nomination to approve the treasurer’s report was made by Shirley McClory, seconded by Deb Allen. The minutes were approved by all. Committee Reports: Mary spoke about the need for more help in recruitment. Tyler Gellasch volunteered to help. Communications – Steven Logan said the next Speaker Series is September 12 and the speaker will be Ray Warner (gun control). He said that the Newsletter has 110 subscribers. Also, in the month of June, the website was visited 194 times, mostly to find voting districts. Facebook has 71 likes and 40% – 60% of members have bios/pictures. Steven requested a budget amount of $75 to upgrade the site and obtain a security certificate. A nomination was made, approved by Tyler Gellasch, seconded by David Shaw. All approved the budget request of $75. If you want to help with Communications, please sign up. Inter-Communications Outreach/Partnerships – Mary reported that she and Linda Descutner went to Chelsa Wagner’s Summer Party at Riverview Park. She also stated that she and many others attended Mary McGinley’s Complimentary Summer Picnic at the Heinz Stadium. We are also invited to O’Hara Township’s free picnic. Mary suggested that USC start out with attending events from Mt. Lebanon, Peters Township, South Park and Bethel Park. Sharon Guidi has an upcoming Purse Party. Terry Aikin spoke about campaigning door-to-door for Sharon. Terry went to Upper St. Clair and Peters Township locations. She is canvasing again this weekend (last weekend in July). If you are interested, they are meeting at the Galleria. There are also yard signs for Sharon. Events – The USC picnic is August 5. The main menu consists of pulled pork, hot dogs and chicken. There was discussion about donations, raffle baskets, claw machine (Andrew Zahalsky), and children games. There will be a corn-hole tournament, bingo, and a scratch-off lottery tree. We will plan for 75 guests and possibly sign-up new voters. Recruitment – Steve Nance stated that they need 15 more Committee persons. Mary said that she is appointing Kathleen McGarvey and David Shaw as Committee representatives. Mary said that she is volunteering at the Allegheny County Democratic Headquarters. Mary said that 15 out of 25 districts voted for Eileen Kelly. Andrew is bringing a large map to the picnic which shows the USC voting districts. Outreach – Ellen Simon suggested that we reach high school students and ask them to attend our events. There is currently a Young Democratic committee at the USC high school. Data Mining – Bernadette Fincke is compiling a database for elections. She stated the need to call each individual on the list and confirm their telephone number. She passed out the ward/district to the respective committee members. She said that the database will only be as good as the input information. Steven Logan suggested that Bernadette reach out to the Conor Lamp campaign office for an updated list of Democratic voters. Another option is to obtain a license for Vote Builder. Mary is going to check with Eileen Kelly and Dana Slicish to possibly have access to the USC portion of the database Bernadette said that there are 1,300 registered Democrats over the age of 66 and there are 400 Democrats between the ages of 18 – 23. Bernadette will work with Ellen Simon to involve high school students.
New Business: Steven Logan said that Elise is asking for suggestions to resolve issues about rain storms to prevent future problems. They (USC Commissioners) request that the resolution be green and environmentally friendly. The USC Township Manager is working with other townships (Bridgeville) to resolve this problem. Tyler Gellasch stated that we are a “swing” district. He said that we need to have a forum to hear local election speakers and their views. He suggested early October, late September for this forum, possible included with the Speaker Series. Tyler is going to look into the USC Recreation Center. Deb Allen suggested giving money for a scholarship to a graduating senior. This would give the Democrat party publicity. There was a motion to do research and decide on actual cost. Steven Logan made the motion, seconded by Tyler Gellasch. The meeting was over at 8:30pm. There was a motion to adjourn by Jason Fincke, seconded by Steven Logan. Respectfully submitted,