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by Don

Minutes of the November 19th General Assembly

November 20, 2011 in GA Minutes

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On Saturday November 19th there were not enough Occupiers present to hold a morning General Assembly at 10am. At 3pm, there were at least 15 people and an Assembly was convened. Andrew was Facilitator, Tamara was Stack Coordinator and Don was Recorder. The minutes of the November 12th GA was read and Agenda formed. The order of Agenda items was as follows:
1. Location and time of next GA. comments:
– Outdoors GA’s feel more organic, aids openess and transparency
– Older persons are less tolerant of the cold
– Keeping notes outdoors is difficult when your fingers are frozen
– There are several possibilities for indoor GA’s (library branches?, Labor Temple? UU church?)
some charge a fee however. The Bradley students may be able to get classrooms in the future.
– Until we pick an Occupy location, we should stay indoors.
– We should stay outdoors until it is too cold
A consensus was reached for holding the GA at the Peoria Library on Saturday and Don volunteered
to reserve a room for 3pm.
2. Location and time of next Rally. comments:
– Should we protest at a bank downtown?
– Downtown is dead on weekends in the fall and winter.
– Because of Thanksgiving, Wednesday and Friday will not have much attendance.
– Should we mix up locations to broaden the exposure for Occupy Peoria?
– We picked the War Memorial and Sterling location because of the volume of traffic and
decided to keep the protest in one place last GA.
– We should develop special events in addition to our regular protest dates and locations.
– We should move around town and do more outreach.
– The numbers of protesters should grow before we spread to more locations.
– Since our numbers are so light in the morning, we should only have afternoon Rallies.
– We should print posters to notify residents of new locations we’ve chosen
A consensus was reached for holding the next Rally at War Memorial and Sterling Ave. at Noon.
3. Committee Reports –
– The Permanent Occupy location Committee looked at a potential house on Sunday. Because of the
condition of the house, feedback from GA’s of the past, No purchase will be attempted.
The committee is researching other locations such as Fulton Plaza and Lawyers are being
consulted. The ACLU has not yet responded to requests for advice. Both private and public
locations are being considered.
– Steve reported that he participated in the Occupy Illinois conference call. Only Occupy
BloNo is occupying a place on campus at I.S.U. in all of Illinois.
– The Outreach committee met on Wednesday. A summary will posted on the Occupy Peoria website.
A new group was created to research topics and develop materials for Outreach through pamphlets,
videos, flyers and lectures. It is hoped that coordination with the Bradley Action Committee
can secure classrooms at Bradley for discussions on topics chosen by the General Assembly.
– The Bradley Action Committee reported that they are making progress but may not formally occupy
until next semester. The campus gave guidelines for protesting (for instance not when the temp
is below 25 degrees) and a location may be decided soon. Andrew is confident rooms should be
available for discussions by Occupy Bradley as they did on Tuesday with professors participating.
4. Steve discussed improvements to the Web Site. It is “modelled” after Occupy Wall Street’s web
page using much of the same code. This affords flexibilty and ease of management and it is
hoped that discussions can soon be placed on the web site versus on Facebook. Registration on
the site is simple and problems should be reported to the contact address.
5. Steve read the Statement of Autonomy (that is modelled after Occupy Wall Street) to set forth the
policy for participating organizations outside of Occupy Peoria. it is posted on this website and
consensus was reached to approve the Statement of Autonomy.
6. A vote was taken to skip the Wednesday Rally because of Thanksgiving and consensus was reached.
7. Discussion was held on a need for action beyond Rallies. Comments were:
– We can pick local issues to promote at city council meetings.
– We can pick national issues to promote locally too.
– They should be positive actions towards constructive goals.
– Further discussion can be on the web site for actions.
– More letters to the editor should be written.
8. Consensus was reached to end the General Assembly at 4:40pm

Statement of Autonomy

November 19, 2011 in News, Past Proposals

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Statement of Autonomy

Passed by the General Assembly at Occupy Peoria

Occupy Peoria is a people’s movement. It is party-less, leaderless, by the people and for the people. It is not a business, a political party, an advertising campaign or a brand.  It is not for sale.

We welcome all, who, in good faith, petition for a redress of grievances through non-violence.  We provide a forum for peaceful assembly of individuals to engage in participatory as opposed to partisan debate and democracy.  We welcome dissent.

Any statement or declaration not released through the Occupy Peoria General Assembly and made public online at www.occupypeoria.org should be considered independent of Occupy Peoria.

We wish to clarify that Occupy Peora is not and never has been affiliated with any established political party, candidate or organization.  Our only affiliation is with the people.

The people who are working together to create this movement are its sole and mutual caretakers.  If you have chosen to devote resources to building this movement, especially your time and labor, then it is yours.

Any organization is welcome to support us with the knowledge that doing so will mean questioning your own institutional frameworks of work and hierarchy and integrating our principles into your modes of action.

SPEAK WITH US, NOT FOR US.

Occupy Peoria values collective resources, dignity, integrity and autonomy above money.  We have not made endorsements.  All donations are accepted anonymously and are transparently allocated via consensus by the Occupy Peoria General Assembly.

We acknowledge the existence of professional activists who work to make our world a better place.  If you are representing, or being compensated by an independent source while participating in our process, please disclose your affiliation at the outset.  Those seeking to capitalize on this movement or undermine it by appropriating its message or symbols are not a part of Occupy Peoria.

We stand in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street and everyone aligned with the Occupy Wall Street Statement of Autonomy (http://www NULL.nycga NULL.net/resources/statement-of-autonomy/).  We are Occupy Peoria.

by Don

Minutes of the November 12th General Assembly

November 13, 2011 in GA Minutes

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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:

http://occupypeoria.org

https://www.facebook.com/?ref=hp#!/pages/Occupy-Peoria/197898350283956

by Don

Minutes of the November 5th General Assembly

November 6, 2011 in GA Minutes, Uncategorized

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Today at 4pm, we held our General Assembly at the Peoria Public Library’s auditorium.

First on the agenda was selection of the Facilitator, Stack Coordinator and Recorder.

Second, the minutes of the October 29th were read.

Third, the topic of audio recordings of actions involving police was discussed. Since violation of the state law is a class 1 Felony,
the Assembly reached consensus that Occupy Peoria does not condone or encourage the illegal recording of police action.
Fourth, the Assembly approved next weekend’s schedule is as follows:

Saturday from 10am to Noon will be the demonstration at the corner of Sterling Ave. and War Memorial Drive.
from 1pm to 3pm will be the demonstration at the corner of University and Main St.
from 3pm until 5pm will be the General Assembly at the Peoria Public Library
Fifth, the Assembly discussed Veterans’ Day with the decision that any action would be viewed as negative. So, the only
option left would be to have our Occupy Veterans give statements of support and have them posted on the web-site.
6th, Continuing demonstrations at the Federal Courthouse on Wednesdays was discussed and consensus reached on conducting
the demonstration from 3pm until 5pm on November 9th.
7th, Goals was discussed and attendees invited to continue submitting goals to Benjamin Machalek at ansonmachalek@gmail.com

voting on the top 5 goals will be completed by e-mail by the November 12th General Assembly.
8th, Ryan Frascone of the SEIU discussed help the SEIU can give to OccupyPeoria in terms of numbers of participants and having
specialists give us training sessions on organizing, canvassing and media management. The Assembly agreed to participating
in this training.

9th, the Bradley Action Committee announced that they attended Occupy BloNo today and were impressed with the encampment
at ISU. They announced that they wish to organize an occupation with a similar encampment. However, persons who are
not students are not allowed to participate according to Bradley regulations. The Assembly agreed to support the Bradley
students in their organization and occupation. A wish list for tents, etc. will be conveyed and put on the OccupyPeoria
website.

The library closed at 6pm and the Assembly adjourned.

by Don

Minutes of the October 29th General Assembly

October 30, 2011 in GA Minutes

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At 4pm Saturday October 29th, the General Assembly commenced. Volunteers were chosen to be Facilitator, Stack Coordinator and Recorder.

Everyone introduced themselves and the minutes of the G.A. of Wednesday Oct. 26th were read. A vote was taken and consensus reached that an audio recording would be allowed by WAZU FM 90.7 of our General Assembly.
Agenda items were submitted and approved as follows:

1. Oakland recap. – The differrence of Peoria’s police response compared to other cities was noted. Since they are also part of the 99 percent and we are not occupying a place overnight, we enjoy no interference whatsoever from them.

- If we should want to do a civil disobedience activity, it must be discussed at the GA in open and be voted on.
The GA agreed that more people are needed before we can plan any such activity and that we should have legal advice
available in our decision making. We should be creative but also on the look out for trouble-makers who are either too anxious
for civil disobedience or are infiltrating to get us bad press. The GA voted 100% for no solo activites by Occupy members.

Don Necessary said Occupy Peoria received 100 dollars for our printing or room rent fees.
Educational events indoors is now desired at the temperature plummets and locations are being considered. Our strength is in our numbers. Outreach and education was agreed to be our first goal.
The statement about Oakland was already posted on the Web site.

2. Bloomington-Normal event on November 5th.
An invitation from the Occupy BloNo for maybe 10-20 Peorians to join them downtown Bloomington was conveyed.
The BloNo GA of Thursday Oct 27th, agreed that by showing support for their march on Saturday the 5th would be reciprocated by joining us on November 11th downtown Peoria. They also agreed that they would notify us if an act of Civil Disopbedience was planned. A question was raised as to whether support would be in addition to or instead of Peoria’s protests. A show of hands was requested to see how many might be able to participate in Bloomington. Since about 5 hands were raised of those present, the GA agreed to continue with Peoria Protests as usual.
– Discussion was raised about a possible November 4th action to withdraw money from Bank accounts from certain banks. No one had specific details, so no vote was taken on action on the 4th.

3. Goals
- Several people read their ten reasons for participating in Occupy Peoria as asked at last Saturday’s GA. Several also stated that it would be wise to just adopt the declaration of the OWS. And several people agreed that accountability, justice and maintaining our freedoms should be added to the list.
-A vote was taken and consensus reached that 5 main ideas to represent our group should be decided on by voting of the members of our list serve. A 100 percent vote is desired for the top five reasons within 2 weeks ending November 12th.
The list is being compiled by Benjamin Machalek at ansonmachalek@gmail.com and reason should be submitted to him now. However, the voting will commence via e-mail and the results will be given to the Saturday Oct 12th, GA. Look for an e-mail to the listserve from Benjamin soon. It was agreed that this list will be redefined by the GA as an ongoing project.

4. November 11th. – Since there is a parade on Veterans Day, those who have served in the armed forces to protect our freedoms wish to participate. Don Necessary took an action to research if we can be entered in the parade. If not, the GA should determine where and when we should assemble on November 11th.

5. November 12th – Discussion was on whether we can support the Bradley Action Committee on campus if they get permission to demonstrate on the quad. David will let us know how soon and where they plan to demonstrate. The GA voted to continue with plans to demonstrate from 10am till noon at Sterling and War Memorial Drive and then from 1pm to 3pm at Main and University.
The GA voted to hold the Saturday GA at 3pm on November 5th at an indoor location. Consensus was reached for meeting at the Peoria Library downtown. Paul MIller took an action to reserve a room for the GA from 3-5pm. Other potential locations include:

Avanti’s, the Field House restaurant, One World Cafe or the Labor Temple. Members expressed an interest in staying business friendly in the Bradley neighborhood to build goodwill.

The GA was adjourned at 6pm

by Don

October 22nd General Assembly Audio File

October 24, 2011 in GA Minutes, Media

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Michael Perillo of WAZU 90.7 FM recorded some of the General Assemblies of Saturday October 22nd.  Here is a link to my Public Dropbox file:

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/5288271/OPGA_Oct._22_2011.mp3 (http://dl NULL.dropbox NULL.com/u/5288271/OPGA_Oct NULL._22_2011 NULL.mp3)

Or play here.  [audio:http://occupypeoria.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/OPGA_Oct._22_2011.mp3|titles=General Assembly of October 22, 2011]
 

Don

by Don

Minutes of the two General Assemblies of October 22nd

October 22, 2011 in GA Minutes

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At the 10am General Assembly (in Liberty Plaza) the following Agenda was discussed:

1. Zack Teague of the Blo-No Occupy movement and Mike Perillo explained the process of conducting Assemblies through Consensus.

2. Facilitator, Recorder and Stack Coordinator volunteers were designated.

3. Areas for Rallies were discussed for Saturday afternoon. A consensus was reached for University and Main.

4. It was decided by the Assembly that attendees would rally as late as we can with a GA to be conducted immediately following.

5. Discussion of the Rally on Saturday the 29th of October ended with consensus that it would be 10am to Noon at the intersection of Sterling and War Memorial Dr. then move to Main and University from 1pm till 4pm. With the General Assembly to be held at Bradley Park at 4pm.
Potential other sites were mentioned for future rotation of Rallies. However, there is a general consensus to maintain Saturday afternoon presence at University and Main St. to let the public know of one consistent
6. Discussion of reducing communications through the e-mail list-serve ended with a decision to table the topic and perhaps create a Communications Team at the next General Assembly.
7. The subject of an actual occupation was discussed with an idea proposed to buy a foreclosed house for use as an example of positive improvement and a base of operations. It was decided more information needs to be gathered.
8. The Bradley Activity Council reported on their progress and limits of operating on campus.
9. A motion to discuss discouraging political Banners and shirts was tabled until the next General Assembly.
10. Goals of the Peoria Occupy movement were discussed and agreed to be tabled until the next General Assembly.

At the 2pm General Assembly (in Bradley Park) the following Agenda was discussed:

1, A Facilitator, Recorder and Stack Coordinator were designated

2. Political Banners and T-shirts were discussed at length. A consensus was reached that T-shirts are a freedom of speech right and cannot be banned for political messages. However, signs or banners should refrain from political messages for parties or candidate to maintain unity of the Movement.
3. Specific Goals or Demands are yet to be created by the local Occupy Peoria and the need was discussed at length with the proposal to have
everyone bring a copy of the Occupy Wall Street list of grievances and the Declaration with any specific objections for use by Occupy Peoria to the Saturday, Oct 29th General Assembly. The following “Reasons we Occupy” were mentioned in discussion for possible inclusion:

a. We (the 99%) do not have a voice
b. We have a corrupted Democracy
c. The “Citizens United” decision by the Supreme Court
d. Corporate influence in politics
e. With our current DuOpoly, our dysfunctional Government cannot
solve problems
f. The imbalance of wealth and power
g. Amending the constitution

4. The rotation of places to Rally were tabled until the next General Assembly
5. The topic of better communications was discussed with a decision to form a Media and Promotion Committee. Names were collected for volunteers to work on this committee.
6. A schedule of actions was discussed to attendees who were not at the morning’s General Assembly.
7. The need for attorneys to help advise and monitor Occupations was discussed if Occupy Peoria is to consider Civil Disobedience in the future.
Names of attorneys are being collected and contacts should be reported at each General Assembly in the future.
8. The November 5th Rally date was discussed but no actions were planned. It was pointed out that there will be a Veterans Day Parade and it was agreed to table planning for that day.
9. A need for training or educational symposiums was discussed and was tabled for future Media Committee discussions.
10. Each attendee was encouraged to make flyers or Handbills for Wednesday’s and Saturday’s Rallies and to bring 10 to the Wednesday Rally.

by Don

October 13th General Assembly Minutes

October 14, 2011 in GA Minutes

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Today we agreed the time to gather at the intersection of Main St. and University Ave. will be Noon on Saturday.
Marchers can walk around the Bradley campus or join the anti-war protests at the same intersection until 1pm.

At that time, we will march together along the sidewalk and head downtown along Main St. until we get to Federal Court House for photo opportunities.

We will then head South to City Hall for photo opportunities, will pass through the Fulton Ave. Plaza and head up Jefferson to the County Court House on Main Street. We will then pass Caterpillar Headquarters to the Gateway Center at the River Front and finish our march at the Liberty Plaza at 2pm. At that time, we will have our Assembly to discuss further action and future rallys.

As you pass this information along to interested parties, please reiterate that we want a peaceful, but enthusiastic march and rally. We want to show the area that we are well behaved and considerate folks with an important message.