Community Rights Working Group Minutes from 1/22/16
Facilitators Deb and Katharine
Note taker Miriam T-H
Present: Miriam K, Joyce, Bryson, Blair, Deb, Katharine, Miriam T-H
Miriam TH reported on our County ban on Pesticides and how to promote it.
Carol DeProsse mentioned there is a state ban on locals like Counties or Cities controlling pesticides: This is an issue that Caroline Dieterle and I raised in our January 2016 column about things we’d like to see the City Council undertake. State law [IA Code 206.34] prohibits local action banning pesticide use, but governmental agencies don’t have to use the stuff and they are free to advocate to their constituents not to use such products, as well.
From Janelle Rettig County Supervisor:
Johnson County, Iowa City and the University all have staff assigned to sustainability and environmental issues. Those three entities and North Liberty have regular meetings of staff working together on various issues. A good way to start a discussion is with the staff group, so it is easy to know what everyone is already working on. You are also welcome to contact Supervisors and mayors and Council members directly. I would be happy to hear your ideas or set up a meeting with our sustainability staff.
Right now, our plan is to make friends with the Board members/Council members – get to know them and have them get to know us. Friendly meetings.
We also plan to educate widely about CR at House Parties to build a supportive base.
Groups like the School Board are already working on this – how can we help them?
Miriam Kashia reported on the Johnson County Pesticide Ordinance:
Miriam K clarified that she was ok with showing others the Draft of the Pesticide Ordinance, though if [since] it is illegal under 206.34 we will have to add Community Rights info.
Apparently the County can’t tell the city or school board what to do but only controls the unincorporated land in the county. Roadsides. Kent County Park uses lots of chemicals.
Katharine knows Jane Kent, granddaughter of Kent Park founder.
We think if a CAFO wanted to enlarge the Johnson County Board of Supervisors could only write an opinion for the state.
Johnson County Board of Supervisors:
Janelle Rettig – Miriam TH is good facebook friend and knows from PEACE Iowa.
Mike Carberry- Miriam TH is good facebook friend and PEACE Iowa member.
Rod Sullivan – Bernie supporter
Lisa Green-Douglass – has attended the last two monthly meetings of 100grannies.
Joyce reported on the School Board Pesticide Task Forces (Inside and Outside)
The grounds crew on the school board were resisting a ban on pesticides.
This used to be contracted out to Quality Care who used fewer chemicals.
In general the School Board seems to be in favor of limiting pesticides.
Task forces working on consensus model.
Joyce is on the Outside task force and they are going to start drafting.
School Board members:
Phil Hemingway – Joyce thinks he wants to ban pesticides.
Chris Liebig – Joyce thinks he wants to ban pesticides
Chris Lynch (president of Board) – Joyce thinks less likely to totally ban P.?
Lori Roetlin – Miriam T-H’s neighbor so know well. Joyce thinks aligned with Lynch
Iowa City Council Members and notes:
Jim Throgmorton – Trinity Episcopal w/Barb Schlacter, Miriam TH (*core four)
Susan Mims – came to 3 hour workshop
Rockne Cole – atty Miriam TH used to work with (*core four)
Kingsley Botchway – Miriam knows from Peace
John Thomas (*core four)
Pauline Taylor (*core four)
Where does Joe Bolkom stand? Mary Beth though Joe said CR wouldn’t work.
Katharine thought state Representative Mary Mashcer might be more supportive. She attended the October workshop.
Katharine talked about Colorado and how Lafayette was sued by the fracking industry? Good short video at cocrn.org – Colorado Community Rights Network. Colorado & Pennsylvania are taking CR to the state level?
Debra reported on the Bakken Resistance Coalition Lobby Day.
About 50 showed up – met with Branstad’s Gatekeeper, talked with legislature.
It is possible some farmers are ready to block bulldozers. The IA state chemist is also great.
Debra might join the Bakken Resistance Steering Committee (Miriam K is too busy to.)
Miriam K is planning to join Democracy Spring March from Phildelphia to DC and get arrested.
Holly Hart, (who works with Iowa Shares which is a local United Way group) is very supportive of CR and Move to Amend.
Debra reported on Paul’s upcoming visit:
Panel 2-5 on February 28 at the Boone High School
Panel members; Paul, local farmer, chemist from IA state, Ed Fallon, maybe a Native American?
Paul will do 3 or 4 “3 hour workshops” in different counties.
A full weekend workshop March 4, 5, 6 in Boone.
Paul could come to Iowa City and/or Fairfield March 9 and 10 and just pass a hat for donations.
We have a good collection of Community Rights Papers from CELDF. Miriam K got 30 shipped. Bryson printed some off.
Miriam K met with the Grannies Steering Committee to clarify relationship.
(Hoping to end the confusion and the discussions!)
Grannies spawned the CRWG but now CRWG is community based not Grannie only.
We are now CR Working Group (formerly a Grannies CR Task Force.)
Grannies do not owe us financial support.
Specifically Grannies are not paying any legal fees re: Community Rights research.
CRWG can use tabs on Grannies website.
CRWG can ask Grannies Steering Committee to forward CR-focused emails to their roster.
- library: The Grannies’ library is in Barb’s office at Trinity Episcopal church. We assume that CRWG members can check things out. Debra gave Miriam some CD’s to listen to and then add to library. Whoever has the CD of Paul in Decorah (Winneshiek Cty) is to rtn it there also.
Katharine reported she was planning to meet with historian Lauren Horton about Populism in 1890’s.
We discussed some of our other group members who are too busy or dealing with too much to be active right now. (We hope you are all well, you are always welcome!)
We passed out our leaflets to pass out to people at Caucuses etc who seem really interested in CR. Thanks for working on the leaflets Joyce and Miriam K!
Four women on the Grannies Steering Committee volunteered to host House Parties.
1/15 Meeting to practice 2 minute Explanations of CR went well. Educational to review. Confidence-building.
Senior Center education:
The Grannies are sponsoring 4 lectures at the Senior Center in March.
Bryson will ask the Senior Center about when we would need to write up a description of our own CELDF educational series at the Senior Center.
Joyce reported a subgroup is working on the doodle poll and asked about evening availability.
Next meeting: February 5 at 1:30 at Lucky’s Community Room.