The Occupy Peoria General Assembly met at the Peoria Public Library at 3pm on the 12th of November at 3:00pm.
Tamara Royer Facilitated, Hanna was stack coordinator and Don Necessary was recorder. The assembly was asked if anyone objected to WAZU recording the session and no one objected. The minutes of the November 5th General Assembly were read. Benjamin Malachek elaborated on the subject of Voting on a top 5 reasons for Occupy Peoria and the need to
take care to separate grievances and goals. Since this is an ongoing procedure, no objections or conserns were raised about delaying a vote.
Next, Dave Cuculich updated the Assembly on the planned discussion at Bradley University on Tuesday Nov 15th at 7pm.
Mike Perillo will moderate a panel of two sociology professors and several members of the Bradley Action Committee.
David explained non-students are not allowed to engage in on-campus protests but the public is allowed to come to seminars.
Next, the General Assembly discussed the proposal to move Wednesday’s protest to Thursday in conjuction with the OWS call for National Action on the 17th. Consensus was reached for moving the protest to Thursday at 3pm until Dark. No General Assembly is planned afterwards.
Next, Bill Poorman who leads a local chapter of the group Move to Amend, explained the goal of the group (A national referendum to amend the constitution to reverse the Supreme Court decision on Citizens United versus the FEC) and stated that on January 20th, a National observance will be planned (versus the actual anniversary of the 21st). No local plans are made yet by Move to Amend on that date but plans are in the works to petition local city governments for resolutions declaring that Corporations are not Citizens. This prompted ideas later of maybe having this be an action for Occupy Peoria to bring up each council meeting. There was no quorum to vote on such an action near the end of the GA.
Next, the item of occupying a regular place was discussed. Comments made were:
We don’t have a place to occupy but need to identify one to keep interest
We need more discussion on how Oakland evolved into various actions
We need more planning for something invigorating to bring more participation
We need something big and sustained versus single events
There are two views on our progress, Long-term and pragmatic vs Short-term action
We need a single place for the occupations and GA’s that is consistent
We should keep Ga’s outdoors for unlimited access
Are there enough people willing to man a 24 hour occupation outdoors?
Maybe participants are suffering Burnout and need activities to bring up the energy
We must get the attention of politicians
Is there anything to be learned from the Tea Party?
We need to seek endorsements and make a presence
Peoria is difficult and frustrating. Bradley is a different student population than ICC
We need to attract the young students in High Schools as well
We are in the early stages of committee building
This will be a long process over many months, we need to
add to our ranks
The media is not reporting the real story of OWS and OP or they ignore us
We need to make Outreach our priority like producing pamplets, leaflets and educational events.
Next, the schedule for November 19th was discussed. Suggestions were:
we have GA’s in the am before we protested.
we have several GA’s in a day to accomdate shift workers
we have several GA’s per week
we have the GA at the location of the protest
All GA’s must be published in advance and that the minutes of the previous GA be provided to be read
The General Assembly came to consensus that at least 15 people are needed to constitute a quorum in order to conduct voting. The vote was unanimous and there were 16 people in attendance. Then the GA decided to hold next Saturday’s protest and GA at War Memorial and Sterling Ave. The first GA will start at 10AM followed by a Rally on the same location.
A second GA will start at 3pm until dark. There is parking in the strip malls across Sterling Ave. from the abandoned Gas Station.
Next, Richard Reeves described a petition for Pekin to have a referendum on Home Rule. He described the current situation where Pekin voters narrowly defeated a proposed prison but the city council later decided to override that vote and proceed to allow a prison to be built. He asked if this is something the GA wants to consider for Peoria but also stated teh deadline for signatures is November 17th. It was dedcided that more information is needed about home rule benefits and Peoria City Council Rules.
Next, the General Assembly discussed the proposal to buy a permanent winter headquarters (a foreclosed property). no one was present from the committee for permanent action. It was noted the location was to be inspected by interested persons on Sunday the 13th at 3pm at 200 NE Rock Island Ave. Comments included:
Could we just squat on a foreclosed property?
If we know of a family in danger of foreclosure, we should help with a protest as at other Occupy locations
It would take lof people to do an action to prevent a Sheriff’s action at foreclosure
We should seek out families in danger of foreclosure
We should inspect the property on Sunday
Does this reinforce or endorse bad decision making and practices for banks?
Which bank holds the title?
How much work and money would be involved to make it habitable?
Could we better spend the money and labor that would be used for a house?
Does the purchase of a house cause a divide between those in the group who gave money and those who did not?
Purchasing a house takes a lot of money in addition to the initial purchase price.
Is the location safe for the occupiers?
Since there was no proposal or committee report, discussion then ended.
The General Assembly adjourned when the library notified the members it was about to close.
A suggestion was made to add the following links at the end of each e-mail minutes: