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General Assembly Minutes Jan 21st

January 23, 2012 in Assemblies, GA Minutes, News

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The GA Minutes for 1/21/12:

13 people present for quorum:

Agenda Item #1: Willie Crowder and the City:

Willie thanks Occupy for showing up to the house. Felt he received good and bad advice. Meanwhile, Willie got a phone call from Gulley (city council member) telling him that the South Side Mission and other organizations are going to stop them from demo the house. . Mission and others didn’t say precisely what they’d do to stop it, but saw his speech at city council. The demo guys told us that once it goes through the court system they couldn’t stop it. But why are they giving Willie a permit for electrical and pluming done they tell him he cannot do it. Willie is confused by the cities actions. Willie says that he was motivated at one point, but now he’s not sure if he wants to continue. Not sure what Gulley is capable of doing and why he’s all of sudden taking interest. There will be witnesses from Occupy Peoria at Tuesday’s City Council meeting when Willie addresses the council.

Agenda Item # 2 Occupy Peoria and Politics:

It was brought up that at the Occupy the Courts event some individuals from SEIU talked about hiring people into paid positions, and a local politician named Matthew Woodmancy was being promoted. This was concerning and the discussions of natural alliances and goals of Occupy started. Democrats and Republicans were talked about. Autonomy should be kept. If we start alienating people we’ll turn people away. Debates started about not shunning everything in the existing framework, but we should not be endorsing or getting behind politicians even if they’re aligned with principles.  It was passed that no one can promote politicians and parties at events, facebook or website and Occupy does not promote any politicians or parties at events, facebook or website. A lot of this has already been said in Occupy’s Statement of Autonomy: http://www.nycga.net/resources/statement-of-autonomy/ (http://www NULL.nycga NULL.net/resources/statement-of-autonomy/)

Agenda Item #3-Martha Needing Help In Community:

Martha from the south side tells us a story: There were these cars (three cars with plates) that were in the street, they had to move them off the street to someone’s yard according to the city (not sure why they had to be moved). City and code enforcement, police came down and told her that she had to move them (never stated where), the guy next door had his home torn down and the owner said it was okay to park them in the back of his yard (guy still owned that property). Not sure if the backyard was grass, concrete or dirt). The City sent a towing company (through a contract) and came down and towed two cars (she still has a mobile home that she uses as her garage and the city couldn’t touch it because it was in her yard, on concrete and valid plates), the battery of one car was dead, the other was fine, but the city towed both (not sure why they towed both), but they towed one that had a dead battery but never gave her the chance to take the good battery out of the one car and use it to move the other. She was there (80 year old lady Betsy Smith) during the towing (we know this since she cannot drive. Cars were for nephew to drive. Anybody would have moved them for her, since, everyone’s cool with each other) $500 was the cost. She doesn’t have the money and they took the cars. Towing companies are taking automobiles and keeping them. This happens quiet often. Martha talked about how the police have not been coming down to South Side. Good documentation needs to be taken of crimes. Take good notes about what happened and when you called the police. Legitimate documentation. Suggested a watch group. Alternatives were given for fixing up besides going through the police. People from Occupy will go to the Thursday 6pm Martha Riley House. Do not get cops involved since they are doing nothing. Get more people involved from the South Side. Someone suggested going through city council even though they haven’t done anything helpful so far. Having more of a citizen engagement. Occupy to have a future meeting come up with a way to do documentation. Build a working group. The idea of a Copwatch came up to, but nothing further discussed on that.

Agenda Item #4 Working on Resolutions for City Council (Move to Amend):

Questions were asked about making it clear the difference between a resolution and ballot: Resolution and Ballot are both voted on by city council if they’ll be voted, but Ballot is where everyone votes on. Ballot is stronger. How do we do that in Peoria? It’s listed by collection of signatures, referendum during an election, deadlines, specific things you do to authentic the signatures. Every city is different. First it would be Occupy groups that would hear from Move To Amend (MTA) and MTA would come back to Occupy with wording, discussions would continue during GA and then go from there with city council. Gary Sandburg (city council) told some of us that we would need to introduce it to one person on city council. City council could still vote it down. Find a councilperson that will work with it and sponsor. Work in between City Council Meetings was suggested. But MTA and OP would introduce what we want. Suggestion was made that we do dialogue and if we do not get resolution, then we go to the people and do a referendum item. If it’s a broad base effort the GPPC, PAPN, MTA OP, etc. propose this and city council sees these individuals from these groups that they may take this resolution (symbolic) more seriously. Can we resubmit a resolution? Move to Amend work on this as well. Bring something that would show how it would affect families and their kids. Proposal for a Occupy Peoria working group with Move to Amend to present things to the GA. Two weeks have a meeting and talk with some of the council people in between. Pick two people to follow through this, Bill Spears and Beth were suggested.

Agenda Item #5- Teach-ins:

 To have teach-ins with Bradley professors and the question was asked about community organizing and social movements. ALEC was talked about also list given of other ideas: ‎
1) How the Illinois (or US) political system operates and how it doesn’t work for us
2) Knowing your legal rights,
3) Anti-police brutality teach-in,
4) issues on violence against the marginalized in our culture and community,
‎5)teach-in on how to use art with activism and it’s history in movements,
6) Gentrification and it’s negative impact on the community,
7) Direct Action
8) Occupy Movement and Student Dept
9) Revolution instead of reform
10) Extreme Poverty: Causes and solutions to help the homeless
11) Local Issues
12) Exploitation of undocumented migrant workers
13)History of police control and protecting the State
14) Teach-in on the Occupy Movement from start to present
15)Dying for the American Empire:20th & 21st on U.S. Foreign Policy. Bradley students will set things up.


Agenda Item #6- Lori recaps on Eyes Wide Open:

refer to link for more information:


Agenda Item #7-F29 Conference Call:

Will reach out to people later (ran out of time and no one was available to do it).

by Don

Saturday January 14th G.A. Minutes

January 16, 2012 in Assemblies, GA Minutes

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The G.A. Started at 3:10pm with Andrea as Facilitator and Tamara as Stack Coordinator and myself as Recorder. There were 15 people in attendance. The Agenda was discussed as follows:

1. “Occupy the Corporations”, Andrea reported that she attended a conference call involving Occupy Portland, Oregon’s request for a National Day of protest against ALEC on February 29th. Nothing concrete is planned but information about ALEC can be found on Alecexposed.org. The next conference call will be on Jan.26th at 8pm. It was suggested that maybe a teach-in can be organized at Bradley before the protest. Bradley students will have to help organize if we wish to do this on campus and involve Bradley professors. The item was tabled for later G.A.s

2. Reducing the number of participants in a G.A. to constitute a quorum was discussed. The fifteen attendees was one person short of a quorum. It has been some time since Occupy has had a quorum but it hasn’t hampered Dirrect Action being taken. It was suggested that at the G.A. that has 16 persons attending, ( hopefully the G.A. on Friday, 20 January at 1pm,)a quorum can address the issue and possibly reduce the number to ten or a dozen.
The two extremes are having 4 or 5 persons calling themselves Occupy and taking action in the name of Occupy or never having 16 people in a G.A. and not being able to agree to take action on anything.

3. Bill Poorman of the local Move to Amend affiliate spoke of the planned Rally by Move to Amend at the Federal Courthouse on Friday, January 20th at 11am until 1pm. He described what was planned so far and that 3 banners will be on display (two of which were shown at the G.A.). He asked permission to e-mail the Occupy mailing list to recruit fellow protestors of the Supreme Court’s decision two years ago to grant Corporations the rights of citizens. No one in attendance voiced opposition to the request. There was discussion of how Move to Amend’s proposed changes to the constitution were different than other proposals drafted by Senator Sanders or Senator Durbin. And there was discussion as to whether Unions would support our Rally locally. Everyone was encouraged to spread the word about the Rally. Tamara discussed plans to distribute leaflets about Occupy afterwards. Most of the attendees indicated they would be willing to stay after 1pm to continue protesting.

4. The question of whether to Protest outside of Caterpillar on January 21st in solidarity with the Canadian UAW of London, Ontario was discussed. Some members are in contact with London and are wanting to know if the local UAW is planning anything locally. The suggestion was made to identify Occupiers who have no direct involvement with Caterpillar and would be available to protest in the future as needed. Since there were no further details available, discussion was tabled.

5. Discussion of Future City Council visits and development of a proposed Resolutions for City Council’s to adopt was next. A recommendation was made to form a working group for drafting a Resolution for cities to adopt. Another recommendation was made to pre-plan and coordinate citizen comments to the Peoria City Council in order to educate the council and viewers on TV. Again Bill Poorman offered to work with Occupy in drafting a resolution but said that Move to Amend is now working on a petition drive for Ballot questions to force State Governments to draft resolutions refuting Corporate Citizenship. The dealine for the petition collection is in August in order to be on the November ballot. Don suggested that the Peoria County board also be addressed about adopting a resolution.

6. Willy Crowder addressed the G.A. about his dilema with the Peoria City Government which wants to demolish his apartment property soon.
He has run out of time to repair the property and the city seems anxious to demolish it and charge him 8 thousand dollars. He said he is giving up his fight after addressing the City Council and getting no sympathy. The members of the G.A. asked him if we could visit his property on January 16th at 1pm to get a first hand look at the property and to document his story. Willy said he would meet us at 1419 Milman at 1pm. Harry said he contacted a city inspector and is waiting for a response to see if there is a way to delay demolition.

The G.A. was adjourned at 5pm. The next G.A. will convene on January 20th at 1pm in front of the Federal Court House.

Occupy Peoria and Move to Amend at the Peoria City Council Meeting

January 11, 2012 in News

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Members of Occupy Peoria and Move to Amend attended the January 10, 2012 Peoria City Council meeting to initiate work toward a resolution opposing the US Supreme Court’s interpretations of the Constitution in Citizens United and to establish greater public awareness before the January 20th Occupy the Courts event.

  • Video (starts at 93:45) (http://www NULL.iplayerhd NULL.com/playerframe/b7e2b13e-6703-43e5-aef6-6fa3074b857a/760x466 NULL.aspx)
  • Audio (http://soundcloud NULL.com/drs20xx/occupy-peoria-at-the-city#play)

Occupy Peoria met with Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis

January 11, 2012 in News

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Nine members of Occupy Peoria met with Mayor Jim Ardis on Monday, January 9th 2012 to introduce ourselves, our movement, to better understand our Mayor and to resolve the tension that resulted from his Occupy Peoria (http://www NULL.peoriamagazines NULL.com/ibi/2011/dec/occupy-peoria) aritcle.  We initiated discussion on several issues, learned how to take issues to the City Council and established an agreement to meet quarterly with the Mayor.  It was a positive step and we appreciated his time to meet with us.

General Assembly Minutes – Saturday, Jan. 7th 2012- 5:00pm

January 8, 2012 in Assemblies, GA Minutes, News

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Agenda Item #1- Sit-down with Mayor Jim Ardis:

-The Mayor wanted to know why we wanted to meet him.

-Had to remind him that he wrote a condescending article about the Occupy movement.

-Either he wrote about us without researching or had a ghostwriter.

-Confront the Mayor as a group of concerned citizens.

-Have face-to-face conversation.

-7-8 people going as of right now.

-Mayor is giving us 30 minutes to talk.

-Possibly give a picture of Occupy or information.

-Bring up talking points.

-Link our news coverage.

-Let him know that we’ll be occupying again and we’ll picket and protest.

-Let him know that members of the Occupy found his magazine article condescending.

-Give a clear message of what Occupy is about.

-Neighborhoods that aren’t taken care of because of the lower income homes.

-Meet up 30 min prior to meeting and go over the issues on what will be discussed

-As taxpayers and active voters the Mayor have been a disappointment.

-Mayor is answerable to the people when he writes against us.

-Ask him first what the occupy movement is about.

-Or wait and tell him first what the movement is about (each persons view).

-Can we record this?

-One of major reasons for existence is that “we are the discussion starters”.

-Meeting not to represent the Occupy Peoria movement as a whole, but as individuals.


Agenda Item #2-Jan 20th for Occupy the Courts (Move to Amend):

-Local Move to Amend chapter wanting to do 11am-1pm action outside Courthouse

-Friday would be the day since a lot of people will be downtown outside the courthouse.

-Bring Banners that say “We the People…” and have the constitution on there,

-2nd banner will say something like “money does not equal speech”

-3rd banner “Corporations are not people”.

-Flyer distributed at GA for Move to Amend day of action

-Flyer can can be viewed at link below:


-Bernie Sanders name was included in flyer

-Sanders amendment has a lot missing compared to the Move to Amend Amendment

-Bernie Sanders name should be taken out along with his website

-Move to Amend Amendment read out loud at GA.

-Working with Occupy Peoria to Occupy our Courts.

-Using chalk, skits, and handout flyers.

-Speaker to be decided.

-Move to Amend working on a new data network for easier use.

-Suggestions for the name of the Move to Amend Amendment (link to Move to Amend).

-Sanders Amendment would be addressed at the Jan 20th action.

-Next conference call for Move to Amend is Jan 17th.

-One of the members of the local move to amend never heard back about coordinating.

-Backside of pamphlet shows movetoamend.org is misspelled. Corrected

-Suggested to also have a rally on Jan 21st outside the courts. Little interest was shown.

-Proposal to commit to staying until 5pm and make more plans.

-GPPC has been meeting and will again about spreading the word.

-Event will be talked about through the UU church and pushing out flyers on campus.

-Pam Adams was contacted and will interview Bill Poorman.

-Keep posting information on facebook

-Tamara’s mom can contact the unions about joining.

-At this point, the holidays has made things more difficult to communicate.

-Educational outreach committee can do more work on getting the word out.

-Put up flyers up around the shops after they have been corrected.

-The Move to Amend is picking up speed.

-Would Galesburg or Bloomington join this event or are they doing one already?



Agenda Item #3: Curious about Fragmented Occupy communications online:

-Too many fragmented groups, but more importantly people aren’t communicating.

-Accusations of people going off and doing things on their own.

-People are making it their show instead of making everyone involved.

-The occupy web list server (email) completely stopped.

-The website has been low activity.

-Small group process with rough communications in the beginning.

-People who were “Ron Paul supporters” had the first facebook website.

-Some tried to do a “Progressive” website.

-Bradley had another facebook website.

-It would be nice to have one facebook website.

-Talks about how we should put everything behind us with the divisions.

-People would just make meetings on the spot without doing input.

-If we had a more fleshed out calendar

-The private conversation on facebook talks about stuff, but nothings ever decided there

-Start doing a RSVP process.

-Should we decide not to have a GA if there’s a weekend that a lot of people are gone?

-The calendar is up on the website, but it’s the weakest areas.

-Entertain using another piece of software for a calendar

-Comcast notified us instantly when emails were not going through.

-The occupypeoria site would shutdown sometimes at weird moments.



Agenda Item #4-In Solidarity With Canadian Auto Workers (lockout):

-International solidarity day Jan 21st.

-Will find unions positions.

-Saturday they wanted people outside in front of CAT HQ the week up to Sat. 21st.

-Call the Union Hall. Ask the UAW leadership what’s planned.

-Occupy should make contact with Canadian HQ.

-All these talks will be put on the discussion board at the website.

-Contact Canada UAW to find out more information

-Could not give a definitive yes on doing anything since not enough for quorum or time

-Find email address to and contact. Get any information.


Agenda Item #5-Peoria Area Peace Network (March event):

-PAPN will discuss the March event Sat. 21st 10:30am in meeting.

-Center of Conscience and War was contacted. http://www.centeronconscience.org/ (http://www NULL.centeronconscience NULL.org/)

-Asked how we would feel about having an event in Peoria about war.

- Reaching out to Camilo Mejía United States to speak about conscientious objector.

-Camilo has not confirmed if he can make the date or not.

-March 2nd and 3rd have a speaking event, art type performance

-Draw people in from Bloomington and Galesburg.

-Goals were to fully network in the area and reach out to high schools.

-Use library for venue if reservations are made promptly, but downtown closes at 6pm.

-High schools will be contacted for holding the event.

-Meet again Jan. 21st at First Baptist Church to plan event.

-This will be $1,500 to do.

-Clearlake Quaker meeting will sponsor.

-PAPN $200-$350 sponsor.



Agenda Item #6-Report outs from committee:

-Not much going on with working groups.

-Direct Action Meeting Planned for Jan 10th 5pm at Bradley Library:



Agenda Item #7-Upcoming Elections Primaries candidates:

-We have been figuring out our calendar that we want to represent or voice our opinions.

-Not to support any candidates or politicians.

-Declaration of Occupy Wall Street, basically saying no to any politicians.

-Support the ideas of politicians.

-Stay away from candidates.

-Not asking candidates to support you.

-Have people go to city council meetings.

-Local issues are where we’ll have the best chance of making an impact.

-Elections are rigged and are pointless to vote until it represents us.



Agenda Item #8-St Louis Event March 15th, 16th, 17th and 18th:

 -Not enough time to talk about. Will follow up on:

http://interoccupy.org/regional-conference-in-st-louis-mo-315-318/ (http://interoccupy NULL.org/regional-conference-in-st-louis-mo-315-318/)



Agenda Item #9-National General Assembly Philadelphia Summer July 4th 2012:

-Information will be put on Calendar. Not enough time to talk about.