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Minutes of the America First National Committee

Tuesday, January 14, 2003

BE IT REMEMBERED that the America First National Committee met on Tuesday, January 14, 2003 at 9 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, pursuant to the Resolution of the Operating Committee of December 17, 2002.

The meeting was called to order by the Chairman at 9:10 p.m. EST.

The Secretary called the roll of National Committee members:

Present:

  • John Verser of Arkansas
  • John Spooner of California
  • Wanda Weatherford, Larry Carroll, and Marcel Dietze of Colorado
  • Helen Leka, George Radzwillas, and Floyd Atchley of Connecticut
  • Gaurav Ahuja and Martin McClellan of Florida
  • Phil Anderson and Diane Lovell of Georgia
  • Dave Doyle of Iowa
  • John Clark and Virginia Clark of Maryland
  • Gerald Duncan of Michigan
  • Ryan Law of Minnesota
  • Nancy Blankenship of Missouri
  • Norman Kent of North Carolina
  • James Arft of New York
  • Ward Chorpenning of Ohio
  • Karen Faye Wilson, Patrick Wilson, and Melvin Johnson of Oregon
  • George Stryker, David Thomas, and Sam Cross of Pennsylvania
  • Warren Baldwin of Tennessee
  • George Pangborn of Texas
  • Frank Hackl and Scott Trindl of Wisconsin
  • Mike O'Brian of Michigan, Platform Committee Chairman
  • Trey Golmon of Mississippi, Ballot Access Committee Chairman
  • Jon Hill of Massachusetts, Finance Committee Chairman
  • James D. Jones of Tennessee, Party Building Chairman
  • Maureen McHugh of Illinois, Treasurer
  • John Pittman Hey of Mississippi, Secretary
  • Gene Lovell of Georgia, Vice-chairman
  • Dan Charles of Colorado, Chairman

Absent:

  • Jess Bonds of Arkansas
  • Ron Teal and Richard Horowitz of California
  • George Bashure of Florida
  • Jim Monagan and Ed Moses of Iowa
  • Guadalupe Lynch of Illinois
  • Philip White of Michigan
  • Clint Muskopf and Leo Daley of Minnesota
  • Gordon Ipock of North Carolina
  • Francis Winters and Ted Maravelias of New Hampshire
  • Maureen Flannery and Gary Grella of New York
  • John Francis and James Bunosky of Ohio
  • Wes Anderson and Blake Buffington of Texas
  • Linda Muller, Rick Besanko, and Chris Wenzel of Virginia
  • Patricia Owens of Wisconsin
  • James Edwards of Tennessee, Candidates Committee Chairman
  • Romelle Winters of New Hampshire, Public Relations Chairman

Cleve Pate of North Carolina and Tom White of Massachusetts joined the meeting after the roll call was taken.

Mr. Richard Rossillo, Mr. Michael Illions, and Mr. Allen Finger were present, first as guests, and then as members of the National Committee from the state of New Jersey.

A quorum being present, the National Committee meeting was opened with the Pledge of Allegiance. The Secretary delivered the invocation.

The Secretary reported receiving notice of the resignation of Ed Moses of Iowa from the National Committee. He moved that the Certified List of National Committee Members be amended by striking Mr. Moses from the list. His motion was seconded by Mr. Lovell and adopted by unanimous vote, Mr. Ahuja abstaining.

The Secretary reported receiving notice of the resignation of Phil White of Michigan from the National Committee. He moved that the Certified List of National Committee Members be amended by striking Mr. White from the list. His motion was seconded by Mr. Jones of Tennessee and adopted by unanimous vote.

The Secretary reported receiving notice of the election of Mr. Jeff Plott of North Carolina to replace Mr. Gordon Ipock on the National Committee. He moved that the Certified List of National Committee Members be amended by striking Mr. Ipock from the list and adding Mr. Plott. His motion was seconded by Mr. Kent and adopted by unanimous vote.

The Secretary reported receiving a petition of affiliation from the America First Party of New Jersey, chaired by Mr. Michael Illions. The petition reported that Mr. Illions, Mr. Richard Rossillo, and Mr. Allen Finger had been selected as National Committee members for New Jersey.

The Secretary moved the amendment of the Certified List of National Committee members to add Richard Rossillo, Allen Finger, and Michael Illions as National Committee members from New Jersey. His motion was seconded by Mr. Lovell and adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. O'Brian reported the election of William Lowry to fill a vacancy on the National Committee from Michigan. He moved the amendment of the Certified List of National Committee members to add Mr. Lowry as a National Committee member for Michigan. His motion was seconded by Mr. Duncan and adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Lovell moved the adoption of the Certified List of National Committee members as amended in its entirety. His motion was seconded by Mr. McClellan and adopted by unanimous vote of the National Committee.

Mr. Duncan moved the adoption of the Agenda as previously circulated by the Chairman. His motion was seconded by Mr. Lovell, and adopted by unanimous vote.

The Chairman gave a brief report. He reported that our party's candidates had done extremely well for third party candidates, with half of them receiving over 10% of the vote in their respective races. The Chairman also reported excellent results in the fundraising activities of the party, especially in the response to the party's first issue of the newsletter.

The Chairman reported that the Standing Committees are spooling up as they take on new members and find more ways to carry out their duties.

The Chairman cautioned the members about the leadership behind the "International ANSWER" anti-war rally scheduled for later in the month. The leadership will be almost entirely socialist and anti-American, and party members who choose to attend should be aware that they may find the participants and themes hostile to the ideals of our party.

Finally, the Chairman reported planning two trips to the East and West Coasts for the end of the month to promote the party. He will be making several media appearances and making important contacts to advance the party's profile.

The Secretary reminded the members that he had previously circulated draft minutes of the November 19 meeting of the National Committee for consideration and adoption. The Secretary moved the approval of the minutes. His motion was seconded by Mr. Lovell and adopted by unanimous vote.

The Secretary reminded the members that he had previously circulated draft minutes for the December 19 vote by mail of the National Committee to select the date of the 2003 national convention. He moved the approval of the minutes. His motion was seconded by Mr. Doyle and adopted by unanimous vote.

The Treasurer reported that the written report she had circulated earlier in the day was up to date as of the meeting. Total credits/deposits for the year 2002 were $18,704.77. The total actual expenditures in the same period were $10,702.39.

The Treasurer reported approximately $2000 in credit card donations are awaiting processing. In addition, by the end of January, the party's indebtedness will be reduced by more than half to around $4000.

Mr. McClellan moved the adoption of the Treasurer's report. His motion was seconded by Mr. Hill and adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Lovell moved the adoption of a Resolution previously circulated with the Agenda. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian. The Resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING REPORTS TO THE NATIONAL COMMITTEE

Be it resolved by the America First National Committee:

That the Resolution Regarding Standing and Special Committees adopted on August 25, 2002 is hereby repealed; and

That the Officers, Standing Committee Chairmen, and Special Committee Chairmen shall each present a report to the America First National Committee not earlier than twelve days and not later than five days prior to each teleconference meeting of the National Committee; and

That each such report shall detail the relevant activities of the respective committee or area of responsibility of each officer or committee chairman, and any resolutions which shall be recommended by such report; and

That each such report shall be distributed by its author via electronic mail or by whatever other means the National Committee may direct.

The Resolution was adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Jones of Tennessee moved the adoption of a Resolution previously circulated with the Agenda. His motion was seconded by Mr. McClellan. The Resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING THE FORM OF THE AGENDA OF NATIONAL COMMITTEE MEETINGS

Resolved, that those persons responsible for the preparation and circulation of the Agenda for all teleconference meetings of the National Committee shall do so in conformance with the prescribed template as follows:

1) Pledge of Allegiance
2) Invocation
3) Call to Order
4) Credentialing Report
5) Adopt Agenda
6) Chair's Report shall be limited to five minutes
7) Secretary's Request for Approval of Minutes
8) Treasurer's Report of Party Financial Status
9) Business Referred by Committee
10) Old Business
11) New Business submitted for inclusion in the Agenda
12) Other New Business
13) Question time for Operating Committee members
14) Adjournment

And that such agenda shall be circulated no later than five days before the meeting of the National Committee.

The resolution was adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Hill moved the adoption of a Resolution of the Finance Committee previously circulated with the Agenda. His motion was seconded by Mr. Lovell. The Resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING BANK ACCOUNTS

Be it resolved by the America First National Committee:

That, the National Committee does hereby authorize the Treasurer to open a bank account local to her and nationally accessible, and that the Treasurer shall report what bank has been selected and shall not change bank accounts thereafter without further permission from the National Committee.

The Resolution was adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Hill moved the adoption of a Resolution of the Finance Committee previously circulated with the Agenda. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian.

Mr. Lovell moved to amend the Resolution to strike a clause regarding the sorting of the mail by the Boulder post office. His amendment was seconded by Mr. Jones. After some discussion, the amendment was accepted by unanimous vote.

The Resolution, as amended, reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING THE HANDLING OF POSTAL MAIL

Be it resolved by the America First National Committee:

That, the Treasurer be authorized to open a postal mail receiving box local to her, for the purpose of official party business; and,

That, the Chairman is authorized to make arrangements with Mailboxes Etc. to forward all mail via two day mail service to the Secretary; and,

That, the Secretary shall dispose of all received mail as appropriate; and,

That, the National Committee does authorize the expenditure of funds for this purpose.

The Resolution was adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Hill moved the adoption of a Resolution of the Finance Committee previously circulated with the Agenda. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian. The Resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION REGARDING ADDING PAY PAL SERVICE AS A DONATION ACCEPTANCE OPTION

Be it resolved:

That, PayPal Inc., an eBay company which provides a secure online payment system for accepting and making payments without credit cards, be contracted by the America First Party for the purpose of accepting donations.

The Resolution was adopted by unanimous vote, Mr. Clark of Maryland abstaining.

Under Old Business, the problems encountered in securing credit card processing were discussed.

A vacancy existing in the position of Rules Committee Chairman, Mr. Lovell moved that nominations be opened for that position. His motion was seconded by Mr. O'Brian and adopted by unanimous consent.

There being no nominations from the floor, on motion made by Mr. Lovell, seconded by Mr. O'Brian, and adopted by unanimous vote, nominations were closed and the matter was laid upon the table.

There next commenced a period of Question Time for the officers and committee chairmen.

A discussion was had regarding the analysis of donors by state. The possibility of providing donor information to the state parties was discussed. The Secretary reported that this capability was already being implemented on the party building web site.

The Secretary reported that he now has the capability to send out "thank you" letters to donors, and is awaiting final text of the letter from the Finance Committee.

A discussion was held regarding the critical importance for the party to take a public stand against the proposed war with Iraq. Ideas were discussed about how best to project our opposition to the war to the general public.

The Secretary again stressed the critical importance that all contacts and prospects be logged on the party building web site, so that the party can properly communicate with them and provide them with the literature they need.

A discussion was held regarding the situation of Congressman James Traficant. His attorneys are working on his appeal.

A discussion was held regarding whether the party should plan to participate in the 2004 presidential elections. Some members expressed the view that the party would be wasting precious resources this early in its existence, while others argued that the presidential campaign is an ideal place to promote the party's message and reach out to potential party members.

There being no further business, on motion made by Mr. Lovell, seconded by Mr. Hill, and adopted by unanimous vote, the Chairman declared the meeting adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,
______________________
John Pittman Hey
National Secretary
America First National Committee

 
 
   
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