From the Desk of the President (June, 2011)



Officer elections: Two new officers were elected at the May 18, 2011 Executive Board to fill vacant positions. Dana Meyer was elected to fill the position of Junior Chief Steward and Kay Powell was elected to fill the position of Member-at-Large - both one year terms running until April 30, 2012. Please join me in welcoming them to their respective offices.  

Sabrina Denson submitted a letter of resignation from her office as Member-at-Large (two year term) as she has accepted a position as Social Work Unit Supervisor as of May 23, 2011. The Executive Board accepted her resignation. Thank you to Sabrina for her service to our local. We wish her well in her new job. Also, with Kay Powell now serving as a Member-at-Large, her position as a Trustee (three year term) is open. A motion was passed to hold a special election at the June 15, 2011 Executive Board meeting to fill both of those positions. If you are interested in running for either the Member-at-Large (two year term) or Trustee (three year term), please send me an e-mail indicating which one you are interested in by no later than 12:00 noon on Monday, June 13, 2011.  

Elections to be held at the June 1, 2011 General Assembly:  

Netroots Nation: Local 34 will send up to four members to the Netroots Nation‘s 5th Annual Conference held Thursday, June 16, 2011 - Sunday, June 19, 2011 at the Minneapolis Convention Center. We will pay the $295.00 cost of registration, two days lost time, mileage and parking for the members attending the event. The event is geared towards the "exchange of ideas and learning how to be more effective in using technology to influence public debate while providing an on-line and in-person campus for exchanging ideas." Former Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold will be the opening keynote speaker. We will elect the four members at the June 1, 2011 General Assembly.  

AFSCME Next Wave Conference: Local 34 will hold an election at the June 1, 2011 General Assembly to elect up to 6 members to attend this event. It will be held in Atlanta, Georgia Friday, July 8 - Saturday, July 10, 2011. The local will cover one day lost time, airfare to and from Atlanta, housing for up to three nights, registration costs (if any) and per diem at IRS rates for travel days at 75% and other days at 100%. The Next Wave movement is geared towards our under 35 age group with the goal of finding and mentoring new leaders to build the union. If you are interested in either of these events, please plan to come to the General Assembly to put your name forward. The meeting be-gins at 5:30 PM and is held in Room 110, Health Ser-vices Building, 525 Portland Ave (corner of Portland Ave and 6th St). There is plenty of meter parking on the streets or in the HCMC ramp. If you are not able to attend the meeting and want your name included for either election, please send 1st Vice President, Vicki Moore, an e-mail indicating your interest by no later than 12:00 noon of that day.

Bloomington Labor Council: The Executive Board approved appointing Kathleen Farber to represent Local 34 at the Bloomington Labor Council. This organization is affiliated with the Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation and is open to union members living in the Bloomington area. If you are interested in joining Katie to address topics of concern in the Bloomington area, please let me know so that we can officially approve an appointment at the General Assembly or Executive Board meeting.  

And, if Jean ran the world we would see a successful outcome to the legislative session. We would see that the Governor, the Senate and the House would have arrived at some sort of compromise bill that would allow our state to go forward. We would see that the legislators would have realized that you cannot cut programs to children and expect the citizens of the state to be happy about it. We would see that they would have realized that access to good health care, good education programs, good jobs and good parks help our state remain an attractive place to live. We would see that they understood that you don't propose to cut jobs to address a budget crisis - that doing actually reduces the tax base while increasing the deficit. We would see that they finally created some jobs bills to put Minnesotans who been laid off back to work. Maybe by the time you read this article, all of the above will have happened. If not, we will be looking at a state shutdown and that will not be a pretty picture for our world.

My hope is that we will finally see some summer weather as we head in to June. Get out and enjoy the sunny days when you can.  Jean