PVA Meeting Recap – November 14, 2006

General Overview

Spirits were high at the special PVA meeting held last Tuesday, one week after the 2006 elections. There was much celebration and many congratulations for the important contributions made by PVAers to the various campaigns, and to the election process itself.

There will be no regular PVA meeting until the fourth Thursday of January 2007, but several important ongoing initiatives were announced at the meeting, all of which are open for our participation and support.

Legislative Response Team

Last year’s highly successful Legislative Response Team will be back in January for another legislative session. Jim Moore will again be the captain of this team, coordinating requests from environmental, health reform, human rights, and other progressive groups that are stewarding key pieces of legislation in Santa Fe. He will then contact members of the team so that we can make brief calls to our legislators on particular bills. It takes only a few minutes a week to participate, and the results have been excellent. To sign up, contact Jim at freebird2020@comcast.net.

Activist Training

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees is sponsoring a community organizing workshop for community and student activists in southern New Mexico. AFSCME is a progressive public service union that has been so successful in organizing hourly workers at NMSU.

The workshop will address how we build real grassroots power and will cover the practical steps to identify, recruit, and mobilize citizen activists.

This is a wonderful opportunity to learn from real pros in community organization. For more information or to sign up for the workshop, e-mail Lynn Rodenhuis lrodenhuis@afscme.org or call the AFSCME Las Cruces office at 523-5438.

Microcredit Bank

The Las Cruces-endowed Microcredit Bank, which is being established to provide small capital loans in a developing country, is moving toward organization before December 31 of this year, so as to facilitate yearend charitable donations. To play a role in forming the bank, or to make a contribution to it, contact Connie Richardson at conniericha@peoplepc.com.

Wilderness in Doña Ana County

The City of Las Cruces and Doña Ana County have held their final at-large community meetings on public lands issues. The next step is a series of smaller workshops to better discuss the issues raised and to narrow the possibilities into recommendations that can be sent to Congress in January 2007.

The introductory meeting will be November 16. This will be followed by a series of 4 to 6 work sessions beginning after Thanksgiving and concluding in mid-December.

If you are interested in participating you can contact Carol McCall at 528-3209 or cmccall@las-cruces.org. Additional information is available from the Doña Ana Wilderness Coalition.

Protect the Vote

Peter Ossorio, who did such a fine job coordinating Voter Protection in the 2006 elections, is soliciting from PVAers our own observations about the safety and fairness of this year’s voting process and our suggestions for the future. Please send thoughts and suggestions to ossorios@zianet.com. The full text of Peter’s message is on the working group page.

The next PVA meeting will be
Thursday, January 25, 2007, 7 to 9 p.m.
Munson Senior Center, 975 S. Mesquite.
Happy Holidays!

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