July 2, 2005, Pre-Convention Board Meeting Minutes

American Council of the Blind
Pre-Convention Board Meeting
July 2, 2005

President Chris Gray convened the meeting at 8:45am in the Riviera Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Roll call of the board of Directors was taken by Secretary Donna Seliger. All Officers and Directors were present. A number of guests introduced themselves following the roll call.

President Gray reviewed the agenda and two items were added.

Motion 1: Mr. Charlson moved to accept the agenda as written and amended. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Motion 2: Mr. Charlson moved to postpone the approval of the minutes until the post-convention board meeting as the Braille and large print copies had just been distributed. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Item 6: Inasmuch as President Gray will report to the membership during the first convention session, he only remarked he is pleased that ACB is moving along in good shape.

Item 8: Convention update – Ms. Cynthia Towers, ACB Convention Coordinator, addressed some items concerning convention matters. Since the room that was designated to be the Communications Center, the first edition of the newspaper will be delayed. She also reported the ACB Café will be open until Friday.

Ms. Theresa Madsen from the Riviera Hotel addressed the group. She updated the Board on a few issues pertaining to the convention.

Ms. Carla Ruschival reported the casino is planning a poker tournament using Braille and large print cards on Tuesday afternoon of the convention. The cost will be $30 per person.

Item 7: Treasurer’s report – Ms. Ardis Bazyn
Revenues $1,082,982.22
Expenses $1,015,338.57
Net Balance $ 67,643.65.

Motion 3: Mr. Miller moved to accept the treasurer’s report. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Item 9: Social Security Accessibility Lawsuit. Ms. Brunson reported ACB was contacted by Disability Rights Education Defense Fund (DREDF), a law firm in the San Francisco area that specializes in law suits on disability related issues. They contacted ACB about the Social Security Administration not providing information in accessible formats to blind and visually impaired individuals causing them to either lose their SSDI or receive a reduction. Ms. Brunson is asking for approval from the Board of Directors to join the class action suit against SSA. If she receives Board approval, she would like to take it to the convention attendees.

Motion 4: Mr. Edwards moved to authorize Ms. Brunson to enter ACB along with DREDF on the class action suit against SSA and further she has permission from the Board of Directors to address the convention with this concern. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Ms. Brunson stated she had reviewed the constitution and by-laws of American Council of the Blind Diabetics in Action and she recommends to approval the charter.

Motion 5: Mr. Miller moved that the American Council of the Blind Diabetics in Action be granted a charter of affiliation to ACB. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Item 10: Rules of procedure – Mr. Don Stevens, who read seven points he is suggested be used during the convention sessions when conducting business.

Mr. Edwards offered an amendment to number one to impose a three minute time limit per speaker.

Motion 6: Mr. Pomerantz moved to accept number one with a three minute time limit per speaker alternating between affirmative and opposing speakers. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Motion 7: Mr. Edwards moved that number two be adopted and amended that the membership be instructed that proper procedure would be if they wish the floor, they must give their names. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Motion 8: Mr. Edwards moved to adopt number three. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Motion 9: Mr. Edwards moved to adopt number four with the added wording “unless objected to by a member”. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Motion 10: Mr. Edwards moved to strike number five for the current year and urge the Constitution and By-laws Committee to give serious consideration to the proposal made by the Parliamentarian pertaining to a quorum of the members attending convention to transact business. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Mr. Edwards suggested amending the new number five to say “A person nominated for an office for a second time shall be limited to two minutes.” It was agreed upon by consensus.

Motion 11: Mr. Miller moved the following for the new number six. “…shall be dropped to the top two candidates.” The motion carried on a voice vote.

Motion 12: Mr. Edwards moved that affiliate votes be limited whole or half votes. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Motion 13: Mr. Edwards moved to adopt the rules in total. On a voice vote, the motion carried. (See attached.)

At 10:45AM the Board convened executive session to discuss three matters: financial matters, an affiliate situation and possible problems with an exhibitor.

President Gray reconvened the ACB Board of Directors meeting at 11:35am.

President Gray reported from the executive session. The first item is that the Board will recommend to the credentials committee not to revoke the charter for Connecticut, but not to seat the affiliate this year.

The second item was to have a three member committee investigate and report back to the board with a recommendation concerning an exhibitor.

Item 11: Convention Site Update. Carla reported that 2008, 2010 and 2011 are not filled yet. She said this year there are 40 food events compared to 21 in 2001. She discussed how room rates are computed.

Mr. Edwards suggested that we postpone the National Office report and the Budget Committee report until the post-convention board meeting in light of the shortness of time.

Ms. Ruschival talked about possibly having to move the 2006 convention to the second week in July at the Jacksonville Hyatt. The dates would be July 8 through 15, 2006.

Motion 14: Mr. Edwards moved to accept the report from the Convention Site Committee chair. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Item 14: Resource Development Committee report from Mr. Trott. He stated the tickets to benefit the ACB Braille Forum will be sold only in the convention hall or out of private rooms because of gaming laws in Nevada.

The Resource Development Committee may bring to the fall board meeting guidelines for future raffles.

Motion 15: Mr. Pomerantz moved to accept the Resource Development Committee report. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Item 17: ACBES Update – Mr. Michael Garrett, chair. He stated the American Council of the Blind Enterprises and Services is doing well. Store sales were down in the first quarter. All the stores have been painted and made to look more attractive to the public.

Mr. Edwards reported the store managers are meeting during this convention and there will be a reception for the store managers in Mr. Edwards’ suite on Sunday evening.

Motion 16: Dr. Bradley moved to accept the ACBES report. The motion carried on a voice vote.

President Gray adjourned the meeting at 12:15pm.

Respectfully Submitted,
Donna Seliger, Secretary