December 2019 Meeting Notes



  • Introduce yourselves to a neighbor

Elected Officials

  • Assemblywoman Wright (56th AD – Bed-Stuy, Crown Heights)
    • Happy holidays
  • Assemblyman Carroll (44th AD)
    • Happy holidays
    • 2019 progressive victories thanks to groups like CBID
  • Assemblywoman Simon (52nd AD)
    • Happy holidays
    • Ditto about this year being one of the best years in the state leg – getting a Dem state senate was critical
    • This year, dealing with budget shortfalls – might be a painful budget
    • Need to work to solidify NYS Senate – lots of GOP senators not running for reelection, opportunities to get a veto-proof majority, changes dynamic with governor
    • Asked Asher to delay vote until January, because 52nd home club is IND – it was not received well
      • It’s about courtesy, we work with other clubs all the time
      • IND will endorse in that race in January
      • Just wanted to set record straight if anyone had any concerns
    • Next Java with Jo Anne set up on 1/7 on 4th Ave; open house holiday party at district office tomorrow afternoon (341 Smith St)

Officer & ExComm nominations

  • January elections – new slate of officers and ExComm members
  • ExComm plans the meetings, make decisions about the club, when we’re going to endorse, which races to get involved in, committees, etc. – nuts and bolts – great way to get more involved in club
  • There will be a new president (term limit) –
  • Marty: likely 12 ExComm slots, depending on who pays dues either today or by election
    • Currently we have ~23 ExComm slots, so a big potential drop
    • Considered based on whoever paid in 2019 or 2020
  • As per November ExComm meeting, members were never notified their memberships are expiring, ExComm voted to allow an amnesty as long as they pay their dues before they vote to cure their membership and vote
    • Any members who last paid 2017 or prior years, paying dues now would only allow them to vote after 30 days or 60 days for club elections
    • Marty: any motions or voice votes, need
  • Marty: Because of problems with NYS Campaign Finance Board, reluctant to take cash – will make few exceptions if folks know they didn’t pay
  • Can take nominations for ExComm or officers from the floor tonight, or ExComm on the floor at general meeting
  • Current officer nominations:
    • Comms – Ben
    • VP Membership – Allison
    • VP Political Strategy – Erica
    • Treasurer – Marty
    • President – Rich
    • Still an opening for Recording Secretary
    • Can take nominations for any of these, but especially recording secretary (this is a compliment to Ben, who acknowledges it in writing)

Climate Committee Update

  • Alice: trying to get state leg to put $1 billion forward for Climate Protection Act – 12/16 150 people started lobbying in local offices
    • Now a part of NY Renews coalition
  • Joanne: went to Kavanaugh’s office, we were not very successful because the senator did not have time – that lobbying has to continue
  • Nicole: doesn’t the governor have to sign legislation before it goes into effect?
    • Jo Anne Simon: some environmental justice provisions in the CCPA that got watered down; have not seen whether the bill went to the governor’s desk yet. Governor has 10 days once it arrives in order to sign. Lots of bills stacked up, always happens.
    • Don’t see a reason for him to veto this bill, but he already vetoed two of my bills this month
    • Nicole: maybe we can do some advocacy getting that other bill signed, since funding one would be tricky if the other isn’t included


  • Marvin: federal PAC needs $, also needs to be managed by someone other than the Treasurer
    • Someone interested in running the federal PAC should get in touch with Asher
  • Club dinner on Sunday, 2/9 at Shapeshifter Labs at 5:30 PM

Club Endorsements

We are not endorsing in the 21st Senate District – Asher received confidential information last night, cannot disclose, we are postponing this endorsement. No candidate will present

52nd Assembly District Female District Leader Race

  • Jim Brennan: moves to postpone the endorsement in this race
    • Marty seconds


  • Jim: as Jo Anne mentioned at top of the meeting, she expressed concern that CBID was going to endorse before IND – should defer in the spirit of this partnership
    • We are still 10 weeks away from the beginning of petitioning. People pop up, drop out, enter the race late. Still 6.5 months away from the primary. Premature to deal with this at this moment.
  • Erica: technically, the choice of endorsements is up to the Executive Committee, generally not left to the membership. Would argue that this objection is improper
  • Joe: as member of ESC, we wanted to schedule these races early because the early funds would matter. Don’t quite get the argument. LID endorsed first, as did NKD.
    • Jo Anne: LID had the courtesy to talk to me about it. NKD did the same, too. My district is most affected, DL would work more closely with me than with anyone else. If there was an endorsement in the 44th, there would be a courtesy extended to the assembly member, his decision-making, their timing
  • Lisa: been in this club for 12 years, in the 52nd AD, and always thought this club was blended between 52nd and 44th. Fine with delaying because it’s premature, but not fine to delay just because another club hasn’t made an endorsement. Understand reaching out to assembly member and other district leader, but not just to defer to another club.
  • David: I definitely think that talking to the assembly member and DL is an important courtesy, and perhaps we messed that up. But our endorsement timing is our choice and not related to any other club. The point about our alliance with IND is also true for LID. Candidates are here, we have good turnout, logical that we should move ahead. I do want to hear DL and Assembly member’s opinions
  • Diana: vocal advocate for not delaying the meeting. New ESC has restructured the endorsement process, and we need to work out kinks of communications – take this as a lesson and not as a conflict. Wanted to start endorsements today because we have a full plate in the coming months. And in this race where not a lot of people are endorsing, it’s meaningful to endorse. I assumed that Josh and Jo Anne would have endorsed already and their opinions matter to me quite a bit, so I’m at a bit of a loss. Now changed my mind, and support tabling it.
  • Cheryl: concur with Lisa and Diana. We have never deferred to IND in either timing or choice of our endorsement in my 15 years in the club. The opinions are significant to me and I care about that.
    • Jo Anne: not about deferral to IND. Not assuming you’d make the same decision. Deference to the member, as a courtesy. IND has not yet taken a vote, and I’m reluctant to get out ahead of my club. I have to respect my club members.
    • Joe: why did you allow LID and NKD to endorse?
      • Jo Anne: Not about allowing. I asked them to hold off, and they didn’t. they had members in the race and I understand that. Their original date many of us would be out of town, they changed the date so we could attend.
  • All of the DL candidates are here tonight. They have prepared to speak. Good showing of the membership tonight. Would be a waste of members’ time to not vote tonight. Deferring to other club on the timing of endorsements runs contrary to the word “independent”
  • How would delaying tonight’s vote affect our endorsement schedule?
    • General murmuring, no one seems to know. Hadn’t yet fully decided which races we would be endorsing in.
  • Relationships between club and DLs haven’t always been positive. Relationship in the 52nd AD is positive, and that’s a good thing. Endorsing someone that the DL and Assemblywoman don’t want to work with, that would be a problem.
  • Josh: caution comparing clubs as apples to apples…incorrectly states that one candidate is an executive committee member of two clubs that already endorsed
    • 2010, IND was supporting a candidate Jesse Straus, proposed him as next male DL. CBID as a group took it upon ourselves to go meet with Jesse. Expected it would go well. It didn’t. Came back and decided we couldn’t support IND candidates. We nominated Chris Owens instead. That choice was made in dialogue. Dialogue is important.
  • Marvin: we live in a horrible time politically. People talked past each other. The club is impressive tonight, people are open to reconsidering decisions. We look to make the best decisions based on the info we have.
  • Asher: call the question
    • Who can vote: if you paid dues in 2018, you are allowed to vote as long as you paid Marty tonight before the vote (you will be cured). If anyone is unsure, they should check with Marty.
      • Marty is confident we can do a hand vote.
  • Motion: delay the vote for the 52nd AD female DL
    • 18 in favor
    • 7 opposed
    • 8 abstained
    • Motion carries.
  • Offer to both candidates to speak. Will do so again.

Rachel Eve Stein

  • Born and raised in rent-stabilized West Village apt, attended NYC public schools; dad organized rent strikes in our building
  • Worked for congress, pulled back to NYC, couldn’t afford the neighborhood where I grew up, have lived in Gowanus for past 9 years
  • Show up for community – got supplies and sandwiches to people stuck during Superstorm Sandy; women should lift each other up, co-founded WIN NYC – pro-choice networking group
    • Founded Women’s Committee of Brooklyn Young Democrats – actually produced anti-harassment guide
  • If elected:
    • Organize volunteer pipeline to defeat Trump and protect vulnerable democrats like Andrew Gounardes – bring 52nd AD democratic energy elsewhere
    • Organize around climate change and affordable housing on state committee
      • 7 professional years in environmental advocacy and education – designed program; Built department, managing $millions of taxpayer money, organized first outreach team
      • Can make county and state party’s operations more sustainable, represent at the top of the platform
      • Gowanus rezoning – deeply involved since 2013, community events with councilmembers to ensure rezoning doesn’t just benefit developers and landlords
      • Continue work reforming the party – been on CC since 2014, grateful for Josh and Jo Anne pushing for rules reform and financial transparency
        • Make sure current members are active, and if not – find out way: mobility, language issues, child care, etc. – offer accommodations instead of shutting them out
        • Increase engagement through poll working ­– heard about issues for working issues for early voting, will work to resolve swiftly
      • Evaluating judges – prioritize diversity in professional and personal background and prioritize gender identity
    • Worked in Stars & Stripes Democratic Club – no Obama/Biden poster, met another young organizer, Kevin Peter Carroll, conspired to put a poster up. We stapled a sign from a rally to the wall. Kevin later became a DL, but united to commitment to public service, finding common ground. Sign is still there.
  • Collaborative spirit, which I will bring to the rest of Executive Committee to find common ground. Unite for good policy even when we don’t agree 100% on all the issues.
    • Thousands of hours volunteering for candidates. Know the issues, know my community

Jesse Pierce

  • Hoped there would be a vote, but grateful for the time
  • Feel really strongly that CBID’s endorsement would be such a huge boost – CBID puts in the work, rich history or reform advocacy and local political organizing
    • Leads to high levels of participation and engagement in 52nd and 44th Ads
  • Most excited about building a party organizational structure with my community with defined roles and responsibilities and processes
    • Speak to a mission to serve Brooklyn voters
    • Very achievable
  • Specifically: Double down on Assembly District Committee (ADC)
    • Work with people to define roles and what can be achieved, which creates unity and a space for people to participate. If things are ill-defined, it’s hard to get things done.
    • Culture of accountability and transparency
    • Everyone has a role to play – create a system that exists beyond one particular person and one particular role. Create a leadership pipeline.
  • Key responsibilities – can bring other CC members and other engaged democrats to ensure we’re coming up with the right solutions and picking the right candidates that align with our values
  • Disperse power amongst district Democrats – involve as many people as possible
  • Running my campaign as a job interview; 6-7 canvassing events already, knocked over 1,500 doors; postcarding event with 23 volunteers writing 160 postcards. That’s the level of energy and focus and inclusion that is critical to this role
  • Want to partner with CBID in that vision of a party organization that we can be proud of

Asher: contentious yet well-discussed issue. Last call for nominations for Executive Committee or any officerships

  • nope

November 2019 Meeting Notes

Welcome, General Updates

  • Who early voted? Who did GOTV to support Ranked Choice Voting?
    • Shout-out to Brooklyn Voters Alliance

Arielle Swernoff from NYRenews

  • Alice introduces: CBID voted to join NYRenews Coalition a few months ago
  • Worked for several years to pass NYS Climate Leadership & Community Protection Act
    • Strongest climate law in the nation
    • Net-Zero emissions by 2050, front-line community investment, renewable energy targets
  • Priorities now:
    • Law is implemented in line with our values
    • Lobbying governor, legislative leaders to make strong appointments to the Climate Action Council – 22 people to come up with the plan, GOP appointed fossil fuel industry representatives
    • Public hearings as the CAC writes its plan, state agencies will have public hearings – will call on folks to show up forcefully and share our priorities for a rapid transition off fossil fuels
    • Requires a lot of funding
  • Long term   
    • Climate and Community Investment Act – Fee on pollution, would raise $7 billion/year and invest into communities creating jobs, energy rebates, infrastructure, just transition fund, impacted worker fund
    • Don’t expect to win this year
  • Key Dates
    • 12/11 – statewide day of action with local, in-district lobbying visits to legislators
      • Will send more info via email
    • 1/27 – Albany day of action (save the date)
      • Governor will be introducing his executive budget in the weeks prior, not holding our breath for him to include the $ for climate
      • There will be buses coming up from NY
  • Questions
    • Is making homes more energy efficient a priority? Yes. Asking for $200 million for efficiency and weatherization
    • How is pollution measured? Focus on corporate polluters
    • Electoral program for 2020? Still considering. Key vehicles may be coalition member organizations, who already have that electoral strength, to ensure that climate justice is at the front

52nd AD County Committee

  • Alice reading on Josh Skaller’s behalf
  • On Monday night, the 52nd AD County Committee is meeting – proxy info is available
    • Cheryl: the 44th AD Committee is meeting (I think) on January 30th
    • Joe: you’ll be getting an agenda in the mail, should have already received an email from Jason Shelley with proxy info and agenda
    • Who do Kings County Democratic Committee members represent? Your Election District
      • But lots of people represent districts far from where they live

Committee Reportback

  • Events Committee – Asher
    • Annual dinner with be in February- SUNDAY, February 9, 2020 at Shapeshifter Labs in Gowanus
  • Electoral Strategy Committee – Allison
    • Have been researching races happening in 44th, 52nd, 51st, and 57th Ads – congressional and state races
    • Finished off races, now putting together candidate questionnaires to send out in the next couple of weeks
  • Womxn’s Caucus – Allison
    • Next event on January 6, 2020 – petitioning training for women and non-binary folks at Hinterlands (Kensington)
    • Asher: big thanks to Allison for organizing and getting this work off the ground
  • Climate Change & Environmental Justice Committee – Alice
    • Thanks again to Arielle
    • Fight for Sunlight update – process explainer. BBG will have a more in-depth update and training on this project in December (likely 12/14)
      • Will send an invite once they know the date
      • Folks can sign on to their petition
      • If anyone knows elected officials, particularly in that area, talk to us later so we can try to meet with and engage them in this fight
      • Opposed to a zoning waiver to allow them to build the buildings higher
    • In January, we’re going to have a speaker on the Gowanus re-development project, discussion of environmental issues
      • Workshop on that at 12/2 presented by Community Board 6 – Alice can give you that info

Club Elections coming up in January

  • Officers up for election, as well as Executive Committee
    • ExComm meets once per month, help put together agenda, events – great way to get more involved in the club and on particular issues
    • Talk to any current members (show of hands) about what it’s like
  • Officers must nominate themselves by December meeting, ExComm nominations can occur from the floor at January’s meeting
    • Two ways to nominate yourself – from the floor tonight or in December meeting, or email Erica at
  • Marvin: critical importance of next President of CBID, nominates Richard Bennett for President ­– he accepts


  • Ben presents overview of constitutional amendments: Officer Roles, Email/Membership list
  • Allison reads through changes in constitution
    • Change in titles, VP of Political Strategy, VP of Membership, VP of Communications, Recording Secretary, Treasurer
    • Changes to nomenclature for VP of Communications
    • No questions/discussion on role changes
    • Changes in mailing list (Ben clarifies that email addresses aren’t up for discussion)
      • -Marty: emails could be given out
  • Marvin: makes a motion to pass first set of amendments
  • 4 abstentions – motion passes
  • Julie: motion to pass second set of amendments
  • 3 abstentions – motion passes
  • Marty: question on process of constitutional amendment to modify the “federal” nomenclature in Treasurer description

Open for floor nominations of officers

  • Ben nominates Allison Mingus for Vice-President of Membership – she accepts

New Business

  • Alice: hosting a fundraiser for Josh Skaller at her house on 12/4 Wednesday, co-hosted by Cheryl, Marvin, Dan Wise, Asher, Jim Brennan
  • Cheryl: December meeting will include business but is also a holiday potluck party
    • Will be meeting in the basement of the church around the corner
    • Not required to bring phone
    • 12/19 Thursday

Meet & Greets

  • Jabari Brisport – candidate for 25th Senate District (currently held by Velmanette Montgomery)
    • Middle school teacher
    • Brooklyn born and bred, teaches in Crown Heights
    • Second-time candidate; came to speak at CBID when running for City Council in 2017
      • Ran because of frustration around housing, over-policing
    • Gentrification running rampant, police presence getting worse
    • Asked to run again by people in the community, knocking on doors this past weekend in Ft. Greene, registering voters and talking to folks left out of political system
    • Questions
      • How would you address spike in hate crimes? Increase know-your-rights efforts in district, how do we make this a true sanctuary city, support move to abolish ICE and not collaborate with them; father was undocumented for 20 years
      • What sitting senator are you most aligned with? Julia Salazar, Zellnor Myrie – DSA member, close with Zellnor, had a great conversation with Jessica Ramos’s chief of staff
      • Have you spoken to the incumbent? I’ve reached out to the office a few times, I have not yet gotten in contact. I’ve heard she’s retiring, I’ve heard she anointed her preferred successor
      • Concerns about policing, what could state legislature do? Terrible bill called 50-A, shielding police records making it hard to investigate/prosecute. Repealing would create more transparency and accountability. Participatory budgeting of police departments. Aside from racial justice, pushing to reform foundation aid formula, felt understaffed classrooms firsthand. More aggressive action on climate change
      • Housing? Elected governance of NYCHA is interesting, need to research more. Massive funding deficit – it started being federally funded, I don’t see a way to get $30 billion next year unless the federal government steps up, but see a path to get $ over time by raising revenue. Vacancy taxation, pied-a-terre taxes, anti-speculation tax.
      • Why do you oppose the sale of air rights from NYCHA? I opposed when it was being sold pay-to-play style to donors of de Blasio’s campaign, and also pushes more towards privatization which as a socialist I oppose
        • Would you support a plan to transfer those air rights to a wider area, which would avoid pay to play? Would you support if their air rights were invented whole cloth rather than taken from NYCHA? Need to learn more about that proposal, would it drive up rents
      • Incorporating Census outreach into our campaign? Will star this weekend
      • SHSAT and desegregation? Used to be a SHSAT tutor so I’ve seen the disparity first-hand. Less than 10 students got into Stuyvesant last year. In favor of a new form of testing, interested in a model that would take top students from every school around NYC. Move further away from high-stakes testing – more frequent testing but less high stakes, just to provide constant feedback on where students are at. Also look at what schools are overpoliced, fight for more counselors, fewer cops.
  • Katherine Walsh – candidate for 51st Assembly District
    • Challenging Felix Ortiz, has been in office 26 years
    • 2 other women who are running – can talk about the issues in our district and debate them, ensure we are planning for the future
    • Climate activist, urban planner, Chairwoman of Assembly District Committee, Community Board 7 member
      • Has worked with cities to build sustainable transportation structures, green infrastructure – cares about critical investments
    • Seeing what Felix Ortiz is not doing, putting our community at risk
      • Displacement and gentrification and climate change working together – will uproot diverse communities
    • Grew up in Sunset Park
      • Saw neighbors come together, show up to combat ICE raids this summer
    • Green New Deal, especially in Red Hook
    • Single-Payer Healthcare in NYS, extend to immigrant communities
    • Pass the Liberty Act to get ICE out of the courts and streets
    • Pathways for affordable housing, protect tenants through good-cause eviction, reinvest in Mitchell-Lama program
    • Pass fair elections law – matching funds, term limits
    • Questions
      • Census outreach as part of campaign? Yes. As ADC head, one of the first things I’m doing is leveraging 187 Dems in the County Committee to roll out a census campaign. As candidate, I haven’t thought about it yet but I can integrate it. Semi-trailer issue in a new development project, AD already has the highest asthma rate in Brooklyn – integrating climate activism with campaign. No Trucking Way BK effort.
      • Industry City rezoning? I’ll need to vote on it as a CB member. What they resubmitted, I am opposed to. It’s the same proposal for luxury hotels and retail. In the process, they can hear from the community and our CB will make a recommendation, ultimately up to councilmember.
      • Vision for Industry City site? It’s private development so they have the ability to do what they want with the site. Want some form of community-based agreement for other facilities. Green industrial development is aspirational. Think proactively for Sunset Park, comprehensive development across the waterfront and NYC, not just in this one project
      • School segregation? Attended Midwood High School. Different people are motivated by different things, so many students are left behind. Foundation aid is not coming to our city and our schools, by the time they show up to the test they aren’t set up for success. First part of this is the funding we need. Then thinking through fair choice and fair opportunity. Desegregation efforts in D15 seem to be working. Maybe we can roll it out to other communities in NY.
      • Crowded primary? Good to have more choices than Felix Ortiz. Our team is setting up specific metrics of what success looks like – where we want to be by January. 16 canvasses and 1,000 doors already. Energizing and GOTV is the key, presidential election will make things look different than last time.

October 2019 Meeting Notes

CBID General Meeting Notes

Thursday October 24, 2019

  1. Welcome
    • Early voting starts Saturday!
    • Ice breaker
  2. Open spot on the CBID Executive Committee
    • Nominations: Sharon Harkey nominated
      1. Member for 10 months. Worked on campaigns in the last few years, including Doug Schneider’s district leader race. Petitioned for Jumaane Williams for Public Advocate, volunteered for Caroline Cohen. Likes bringing people into the political process, bringing people together.
    • Sharon elected unanimously
  3. In January there will be elections for Executive Committee and for Officers. 18 or 19 Ex Comm seats currently. Asher is term-limited. If you are interested in running, inform any of the current officers.
    • Anyone interested in running for officer must be nominated tonight or at the next meeting. They cannot be nominated from the floor in January. Ex Comm members can be nominated from the floor.
  4. Committee Updates
    • Climate Change / Environmental Justice Committee
      • Please everyone sign the Brooklyn Botanic Garden petition “Fight for Sunlight” on the BBG website!
      • Committee has drafted a letter to send to elected officials asking that they oppose the development that would block the BBG’s sunlight
      • Rezoning around the Gowanus Canal: Suggestion for the club to bring in someone who can teach us more about the zoning and environmental issues around the canal since there is a major proposal to significantly increase the density around the canal.
        1.  Josh Skaller suggests we host a community forum to educate members of the community on the subject.
      • Extinction Rebellion protested by holding funeral for the environment at the Atlantic Antic street festival. Some very bored plainclothes police officers volunteered to provide a police escort. There may be another funeral march on 7th Ave in Park Slope on Halloween.
      • Acme Studios is hosting a debate watching party and all the proceeds will go to raise for Extinction Rebellion. If you want to hang out with Richard Bennet, be there!
    • Events Committee Update
      • We are changing when we have our annual dinner as a response to the fact that the primary elections have moved to June. We are still exploring venues and dates. Possibly early February
    • Electoral Strategy Committee
      • First meeting of the Electoral Strategy Committee took place
      • Allison was elected Chair
      • We made a list of all of the races we’re paying attention to and divided them up between committee members to research the candidate
      • We created a timeline for creating endorsement questionnaires.
      • Other committees will be asked to submit 3 questions on their issue to candidates
      • There will be three questionnaires: District Leader, State Legislative, and Congressional
      • If anyone is interested in joining the committee, contact Allison!
  5. Early Voting Starts Saturday! Most folks here will vote at the Armory
    • Voting early will make the point that we need more early voting sites in the future so vote early!
    • There are a lot of new voting laws going into effect this year and early voting is a chance to test them all out before the main event
  6. Explanation of Ballot Measures from Karen Wharton
    • Karen is from the Committee for Ranked Choice Voting
    • Ranked choice voting: Instead of having one vote per office, we’ll rank up to five of your favorite candidates in order for each office.
      • If no one candidate has a majority with the first choice votes, we start eliminating whoever is in last place and reassigning their votes to the voters’ second choice. This continues until someone breaks 50%.
      • This discourages candidates from focusing only on a small subset of voters and encourages them to instead attempt to appeal to a much broader set of voters
      • This eliminates the issue of spoiler candidates
      • This would only be in the primary election, not the general election and only for municipal office.
      • Many people are concerned that this system will confuse voters. However, research from areas that have ranked choice voting indicates that voter engagement did not diminish, but education is necessary.
        1. Karen taught ranked choice voting to a bunch of elementary school kids and they figured it out.
      • If the proposal passes there will be a lot of education.
      • It would go into effect in 2021.
    • Asher discusses ballot measures 2-5 by reading them. Look them up online!
      • A few progressives oppose question 2 (about the Civilian Complaint Review Board) because they want to eliminate the CCRB entirely and replace it with something much better.
  7. Motion to Endorse the Five Ballot Measures: Passes
  8. Jesse Pierce, Candidate for Female District Leader in the 52nd AD
    • Running because she believes the Brooklyn Democratic party can be much more than it is today. We should be a standard bearer for progressive organizing and promoting progressive policy around the country. The County Committee should be front and center in that vision.
    • She has organizers canvassing to inform Democratic voters about the voting reforms to make sure people know their voting rights.
    • Jesse’s campaign team is a team of five women
    • Background: Has lived in the 52nd for 4 years. Is currently in Boerum Hill with her partner Renee. Loves meetings that happen on basketball courts.
    • She is Director of Operations at a small software company.
    • Short term goals for county: Wants to see county start following the rules that currently exist. Make party inclusive, accessible, and transparent. She also prioritizes proxy reform. Also concerned with county’s finances.
    • Josh asks: since the 52nd has a lot of political enthusiasm but its county committee is full – what is her philosophy about how to handle an excess of folks wanting to participate. Response: She believes it is important to foster a culture of participation – it’s important for county committee members to go out and talk to their neighbors, not just because it’s their obligation but because it’s important, and Jesse would like to reduce the number of people who are appointed in order to accommodate people who want to canvass.
    • Regarding the involvement of District Leaders in elections: Jesse would like to see an active Assembly District Committee and she would like to involve the ADC in recruiting poll workers.
  9. Update from Assemblymember Carroll
    • On November 18th, Bobby and Brad Lander are cohosting a public meeting with the DOT at PS 889 at 6:30 to discuss the Ocean Parkway and Coney Island Ave traffic
    • Campaign Finance Commission is a disaster: They’re going to come out with a report that will probably create a matching program. It will only match dollars of in-district contributions. Bobby considers it unworkable. It is meant to fail and it is meant to stifle participation in democracy and is counter to the purpose. The Commission has broad authority to change any election laws. The legislature has only three weeks to overturn anything this commission does or it automatically becomes law.
      1. “Lots of members of the state legislature are mendacious and craven. Not me.”
      1. The Commission’s report will come out either right before or after Thanksgiving.
    • Last week in Albany there was a forum on early childhood literacy and dyslexia screening
  10. Update from Assemblymember Simon
    • A problem with the public financing commission is they’re trying to take the city’s matching funds program and superimpose it onto the state level, and it doesn’t work statewide.
    • Closing of Riker’s and the Brooklyn Detention Center: This process is going in a problematic way. Each borough has a stakeholder group of people who live near the detention center. One of the issues is ULURP – this is a land use issue. Also considering whether the facility will be a place that provides the programs and treatment that inmates need.
    • BQE: It’s not figured out yet. An expert panel will issue a report, which is delayed. They are working very hard to get the report right. Neither of the approaches that were proposed is great.
      • This used to be a state project until they decided the city owned the roadway, but the city isn’t in the business of building bridges, the city repairs roads, so JoAnn has been working on getting the state back to the table.
  11. Amendments to CBID Constitution
    • Procedure: The club has to hear them, have the opportunity to ask questions, and then vote to approve them in two consecutive meetings.
    • These amendments specifically serve to clarify the officer positions
    • There will be two questions: The first is the definition of the officers. In our current constitution the responsibilities of the officers is not explained.
    • The second question clarifies that the club doesn’t give out email addresses.
    • Explanation of the officer roles:
      1. Changed some titles.
        1. First VP = VP of Political Strategy
        1. 2nd VP = VP of Membership
        1. Corresponding Secretary = VP of Communications
      1. The role of president is an explanation of what is already happening, with the addition of the creation of a “financial plan,” so that members have a better idea of how our money is used
      1. The two VPs get more specific responsibilities instead of how it is now, which is more ad hoc
    • In terms of the club’s list: we are only giving out names and mailing addresses, not emails. Also the use of the club’s list, instead of being determined by the standard of being in the spirit of the club, that standard will be determined by the Ex Comm.
      1. Josh spoke against the Ex Comm being empowered to deny members access to the list
    • Marty is concerned that this puts him on the hook for federal filings, which are currently completed by Rich Bennett
    • Extended discussion of the executive committee deciding whether to give out the club list. Some folks think it’s too restrictive, others think we’re giving the members’ information out too easily.
    • Discussion of VP of Political Strategy: Their purpose is to help ensure that we approach endorsements in a thorough way.
    • Vote on the first question: to change the officer positions and create descriptions for them: Motion passes
    • Vote on the second question of Article 16, the membership list: Motion passes
    • Immense thanks to the people who spent so much time and energy working on the amendments
  12. Fundraiser for Josh Skaller for District Leader at Alice’s house on November 20th
  13.  Sharon Harkey announcing an event next Wednesday at Beth Elohim on Garfield Pl.  Brooklyn DA Eric Gonzalez discusses his justice 2020 plan.
  14. Update from Josh Skaller on county didn’t actually happen

CBID September 2019 General Meeting Notes

    • Allison and Alice presiding, Asher is out of town
    • Thanks for patience (didn’t enter the church until 7:20)


    • Running for the 21st State Senate District
    • Biographical background, grew up in Flatbush
    • Underfunded schools; housing crisis; reform campaign finance system; artificial energy crisis (opposes Williams Pipeline)
    • Questions:
      • Plans to address housing issue, developers – background in finance (Comptroller’s Office), investing pension $ in affordable housing; knowledge gap from recent laws so we need robust enforcement, know-your-rights; need to build affordable units (city or state-owned land should be kept 100% affordable in perpetuity); diversity of incomes in housing is better; recreate Mitchell-Lama initiative to spur more folks towards homeownership
      • How much $ have you raised – won’t disclose until filing in January
      • Any endorsements – campaign is three weeks old, have sat down with a number who have given positive signals
    • Running in the 12th CD – east side of Manhattan, midtown, Queens (Astoria, LIC), Brooklyn (Williamsburg, Greenpoint)….Representing a piece of the city means fighting for the entire city
    • Co-founder of Sexual Harassment Working Group, no longer active member to keep politics separate from policy
      • Four men in the room, came out against Jeff Klein in 2018
      • New leadership in 2019 fought with us, not against us
    • Need to raise our voices in Congress
    • Questions
      • Carolyn Maloney has been an advocate for women, what do you have to offer that she doesn’t – one thing to sign on and say you support, another to do the work. There’s more to being a representative. Education crisis, my career is in education. The federal government has a lot of control over what happens in our schools; our reps need to focus on education. Carolyn doesn’t sit on those committees, haven’t seen her focus on the issues that impact NYC advocates.
        • Support Green New Deal, don’t take $ from corporate donors
    • Running for District Leader in AD 52 (Brooklyn Heights, Dumbo, Vinegar Hill. Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Park Slope, Prospect Heights)
    • Biography – Democrat my whole life, grew up in affordable housing, attended NYC public schools; volunteered on dozens of campaigns, delegate for Bernie in 2016, campaigned for Hillary in Philly
      • Helped to create a grassroots anti-AirBNB group – organizing skills, printed out educational fliers, used data to target, chalking
    • Fierce advocate for climate crisis – everything we do has to be mindful of climate; on Kings County Democratic Party and State Committee, would advocate for the party to make operations more energy efficient, greener, less waste, and advocate for a stronger party platform on climate
    • Questions
      • Never met a District Leader, no one ever called me or knocked on my door; do you have a plan to activate those kinds of people? – I plan to be very visible, tend to go lots of community events, frequent local businesses in the district. But also see DL role and County Committee as organizing infrastructure. Should engage CC members and ensure all seats are filled so people have the resources they need to support a Democrat who needs help
        • Providing templates, talking points – making it as easy as possible for people to go out and talk to neighbors
      • Website – with platform and bio, also on Twitter @RachelStein
    • Updates from Committee
      • Simon – 4 groups in Brooklyn (350 Brooklyn, Arise in Sunset Park, Sunrise Movement, Extinction Rebellion – has a Park Slope chapter)
        • First major event this Sunday, funeral march through Atlantic Antic starting at Atlantic & Columbia near the water, down to the Apple Store
        • Handouts – list of events going on, and a few fliers
      • David – introducing Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, one of our best assets in Brooklyn; right now there is a proposal for two 39-story towers right across the street that will cast a shadow across significant parts of the garden
    • Ethan Lustig from BBG, Director and Community Affairs
      • Current issue: Request for a rezoning to facilitate construction of two 39-story, 460-foot towers along Franklin Ave
        • 100 feet taller than any nearby building
      • Why: Graphic showing reduced sunlight due to shadows cast by proposed towers, as much as 35 hours
        • Conservatories and greenhouses are most significantly affected – propagation of plants for the entire garden
      • Zoning along Washington Ave was specifically put in place with current height limit to protect access to sunlight for the garden – our position is to maintain current zoning
    • What can we do?
      • Circulating a petition for administration and local councilmembers – text SUNLIGHT to 484848
      • Check out exhibit inside the Conservatory to give a sense of the impact
      • Tell friends and families
      • Communicate with local officials – protect our treasured green spaces
    • Questions
      • (Marvin) Why can’t the Board of Directors march mega-donors down to City Planning Department to stop this
        • there was a Scoping Hearing where BBG was able to make their feelings heard; don’t understand how City Planning could approve the project as is, or how local councilmember could approve a project that hurt the garden. Campaign has been underway for a while.
      • (Peter) Sen. Parker and Assmblywoman Richardson are supportive; BP Eric Adams will wait to make a public stance until public hearing. Cumbo has not responded to me.
        • Worried by answers like that. Cumbo’s position is not to approve anything that would harm the garden
      • (James) Two developments 16-stories high that BBG has not come out against.
        • We are a garden, not a housing organization – we didn’t have concern about the impact from that development. Shadows don’t hit as much, and mainly on administrative building.
      • Matt Stern) Changes to state and local law?
        • Don’t know the answer. Looking at other similarly focused campaigns in other areas (Central Park), they have run into disparity between stories and height; lots of loopholes developers can use (mechanicals in the middle of the building enabling them to build even higher). Some state officials are looking at legislative ways to close those gaps. But to my knowledge no change preventing this. Key is not changing the zoning map
      • (Alice) What can CBID do to help?
        • Bringing groups into our coalition, if CBID would officially take a stance on the issue, and then encourage membership to sign petition, stay involved, look out for future events.
      • Land use process update?
        • City Planning is reviewing; once they certify or not, developer either has to make changes or eventually go to Community Board 9 à Borough President, borough board votes yes or no à City Council (yes or no)
      • (Diana) Spoken to the developers?
        • Not yet directly. We don’t believe the zoning should be changed. We aren’t obligated to move since the zoning was put in place for this specific reason.
      • (Amanda) Have you engaged CB9?
        • Yes, and yes in the past – heading out there next month. Chair just turned over but working closely with them.
      • Mayor’s office involvement?
        • In theory yes – City Planning does the Mayor’s bidding
      • (Josh Skaller) Land use decisions usually fall through the City Councilmember’s office, rest of the Council typically defers to the member who represent that district, so all pressure should go on Laurie Cumbo. I’ve seen a large affordable housing package as the sweetener, which needs to be acknowledged.
        • Not trying to make this a fight over housing vs green spaces. Believe we can do both.
      • (Jim Brennan) is the developer seeking a variance or change the zoning itself?
        • Text amendment, re-zoning this lot and one more lot over
        • Even if the Community Board votes no this could still go through the process
        • I think CBID’s focus should be on the Borough President
      • Who is the new manager for CB9?
        • District Manager role is vacant, Fred Baptiste (sp?) is new chair
      • (David) Letter to Borough President is a good idea, but list of organizations to join on may be most immediate action step.
  • JOSH SKALLER: Move that CBID empower the Executive Committee to draft a letter to the Borough President, cc:ed to the Community Board, in opposition to the project as it stands now, with language that the Executive Committee deems appropriate
    • David: Friendly amendment to also sign on as a supporter on the BBG’s website.
    • Josh: seconded

Discussion? Call the question?

  • CLUB BUSINESS (Allison)
    • Electoral Strategy Committee (Marvin invited to speak, defers to Allison)
      • Proposed to function similarly to judicial committee – have a committee that will take the time to research candidates coming before the club. Our endorsement process is sometimes feelings-based, want to streamline and make a better system.
      • Marvin: Also create guidelines for deciding which races we want to get involved in
      • Discussion:
        • Josh – very much in favor of ExComm looking at races that would be of potential interest to the club; very concerned about ExComm making recommendations to the club. We need to constantly validate the general membership’s ability to weigh in and participate in the endorsement process.
        • Marty – sometimes candidates come here (like CD 12 candidate, where we’ve never endorsed), we need to figure out how to prioritize. I would think this committee would do the groundwork and then recommend to the entire club about endorsing people.
        • Allison – one of the most valuable things we can do for general membership is provide information and research about candidates.
        • Marvin – committee will involve all members
        • Diana – my understanding is that endorsement recommendations weren’t a part of it, but creating questionnaires and structure for the endorsement process.
          • Allison – what I met about recommendations was which races we should spend our time on, and creating a rubric or some other system for picking certain districts, not just because we know someone who’s running
        • David – understand Josh’s concerns, but we already have a judicial committee that makes recommendations for endorsements; don’t believe that committee has undue influence
        • Howard – judicial races are a different breed, screening panels are traditional measure for reform clubs; suggest that when looking at races, CBID doesn’t really have a catchment area (yes we do), but we should start by defining our geographic area but I don’t know that we want to be that restrictive. Blake Morris was frustrated by NKD’s committee decision to not endorse in his race.
        • Cheryl – concurring with Howard’s point. We do have a natural area, the 52nd AD and the 44th AD, and their overlap. Set up some sort of mechanism that retains flexibility.
          • Erica: constitution officially lays out those districts plus 51st and 57th as our area
        • Rich – not written into law yet, so if people want to participate there will be a meeting.
      • Allison: Anyone interested, wanting to get more info or help hash this out – MEETING AT JOHNNY MACK’S ON MONDAY, OCTOBER 21
        • Passing around a clipboard to get info and reminder
        • Matt Stern – helped make NKD’s criteria to decide when they get into a race, echo Cheryl’s point
    • Recording Secretary
      • Melissa Turoff resigned the role, Executive Committee has already approved interim appointment, requires club vote
      • Ben – threatens to delete all of the above notes
      • Marty – moves to nominate Ben Theodore for interim recording secretary
        • seconded
      • Unanimous vote
    • Executive Committee
      • With Ben’s move to officer, new opening on Executive Committee – just for the next few months until January
      • Cheryl – nominates Diana Gonzalez
        • Diana – active in Brooklyn politics a very long time, joined CBID recently. I do have a fair amount of free time and want to be more involved. Joined Events Committee, happy to help!
      • Alice – nominates Simon
        • Simon – flattered by Marty asked me how long I’ve been a member, I did not join before March, don’t want to risk immediate impeachment
      • Ben – nominates Sharon Harkey
        • Sharon – Member since January, happy to be a member of this club, want to be able to contribute and want to make more things happen
      • Discussion
        • Josh – on Diana’s behalf, she has worked on a great number of campaigns close to CBID, first met her on Chris Owens’s congressional campaign and I think she’d be a great addition
        • Marty – candidates should step out
      • Votes
        • Cast by show of hands
      • Diana is elected to the Executive Committee through December
      • Sharon is encouraged to run again in January
    • Brooklyn for Peace Gala on the 7th – vote on placing an ad in their journal
      • Cheryl – not a partisan group, very worthy organization, have supported them for a very long time in the past
      • Marty – full page ad is $600
      • They’re not allowed to buy ads in our journal, so they pool their money and put their ad in as Friends of…, and they usually buy a table
      • Suggest not just doing a full page ad but pay for a couple tickets for people from the club, we have $33K in our checking account, we have the money, it’s great food, tickets are $150 each
      • Discussion
        • Diana – can we also send invite to the full club?
          • Marty – Yes, we can do an e-blast
        • Judy – outgrowth of Parents for Peace from 25-30 years ago; event is at a Brooklyn Heights church
        • Cheryl – headliner is Zephyr Teachout
        • Marvin – how do we decide who gets the ticket?
  • MOTION: Place an ad for $600 – from Cheryl, seconded by Diane
  • MOTION: Allocate $300 towards tickets to subsidize club members who want to attend – if just two we pay full price, if more it’s split between then – from Marvin
    • Marty – we need a closing date; vote on this first
    • 19 in FAVOR
    • No objections, no abstentions
  • Follow-up on Move the Money Campaign, for City Council to hold hearings on what $ the city needs for purposes and how much is going to the military
    • If anyone wants to sign a postcard, will hand them out
    • Cheryl: Confusion about meeting location tonight, brought food that is sitting downstairs in the kitchen. Would like to give perishables to club members so it doesn’t go to waste.

Marvin: Thanks to Alice and Allison for stepping up to lead

  • ADJOURNED at 8:48 PM