July 8, 2006, Pre-Convention Board Meeting Minutes

American Council of the Blind
Pre-Convention Board Meeting
July 8, 2006

President Gray called the meeting to order at 8:45am in the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Jacksonville, Florida.

All members were present except Ms. Ruschival, who was out doing convention business.

The guests in the room introduced themselves.

Mr. Charlie Hodge announced with his and Ms. Schmitt’s contributions, there are enough funds to begin registering the names used by ACB.

Item 4: President Gray reviewed the meeting agenda.

Motion 1: Mr. Edwards moved the adoption of the agenda as presented. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Motion 2: Ms. Schmitt moved the adoption of the minutes from the Mid-year board meeting. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Motion 3: Mr. Edwards moved to adopt the minutes from the March 6 and 16, 2006 continuation of the mid-year meeting. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Motion 4: Mr. Beatty moved adoption of the March 30, 2006 minutes. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Item 6: President’s report. He spoke about a complaint a member had made which the Advocacy Service Committee is working on at the moment.

The Advocacy Services Committee presented a policy for Board approval. Ms. Brunson read the wording. (Copy attached)

Motion 5: Mr. Edwards moved the adoption of the policy amended by deleting the word “general” public. He added two more amendments. “The chair of the Committee (the president of ACB)”. Set a time limit of “within 14 days after the meeting of the executive committee”. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Mr. Miller offered an additional amendment. “…that the final decision be conveyed to the ACB Board of Directors and others.”

Motion 6: Mr. Edwards moved to accept the President’s report. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Mr. Sheehan offered his expertise in dealing with Section 508 issues to the Advocacy Services Committee.

Item 7: Mr. Godino reported the general financials of ACB. He stated his report reflects figures as of May 31, 2006 and ACB is in line with the budget thus far.

Motion 7: Mr. Edwards moved to file the treasurer’s report for audit. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Item 9: Vehicle Donation report from President Gray. Mr. Michael Irwin from VDC will address the Presidents’ Meeting on Thursday as many members have concerns about ACB participating in the fund raiser in their states where they are already established with the Vehicle Donation Project.

Motion 8: Mr. Pomerantz moved the President establish an ad hoc committee to include three members of the Board of Directors and at least three affiliate presidents from those affiliates affected by the current situation. In addition, either Mr. John Learned or Mr. Michael Irwin should be included as part of the committee. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Item 8: Ms. Brunson reported activities in both the Washington, DC and Minneapolis offices. She thanked the affiliates and one anonymous contribution to cover the expenses of the talking book narrator for 2006.

The Washington, DC office lease has been extended for two years to coincide with the Minneapolis Office lease.

Ms. Terry Pacheco, staff member in the DC office tendered her resignation as of July 31, 2006. She indicated she wanted to be with her ailing father who lives in Boston.

Ms. Brunson reported she had reviewed the constitutions of two potential ACB affiliates that wish to receive charters.

Motion 9: Mr. Charlson moved to accept provisional charters for Montana Blind and Low Vision Council and ACB Human Service Professionals. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Ms. Brunson stated she has brought to the convention a talking glucose meter to show to anyone interested.

Ms. Day Al-Mohamed discussed resolutions passed during the 2005 convention. Since the Legislative Seminar she has been busy following up on current legislation.

Mr. Jason Perry is the new ACB Intern for the summer and is working in the National Office.

Ms. Sharon Lovering, Braille Forum Editor, reviewed the report she distributed to the board. By September, a CD version of the Braille Forum will be produced and available to readers. Currently there are 25,000 readers of the Braille Forum in all formats.

Ms. Schmitt announced that Mr. Allen Petersen of North Dakota organized the Montana affiliate at his own expense.

President Gray asked about the descriptive video bill which is a small part of the Telecommunications Bill in congress. The Senate bill is S-2686 however the House bill is not as good.

Mr. Edwards asked about the Randolph-Sheppard Bill. Ms. Brunson stated she believed the Senate HELP Committee already has decided on what they want to propose with regard to the JWOD Program and how it affects NIB and NISH. Currently the interested parties are anticipating a fall announcement of their decision.

Motion 10: Mr. Edwards moved that this Board ask the National Office and the Board of Publications to work as a matter or priority to see that information is published in the next issue of Braille Forum that will focus on these two issues so that our membership will have the tools they need to begin to help us effectively contempt possible negative publicity on the Randolph-Sheppard, NIB, NISH and JWOD issues. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Mr. Pomerantz asked about the status of Rehabilitation, Research and Training Center. Ms. Brunson stated she believed they probably will lose their funding.

ACB has been asked by the Justice Department to continue the discrimination project which began last year.

From the Minneapolis Office, the ACB files are now on the Mass 90 program and ACBES will be on the program soon.

Ms. Lainey Feingold and Ms. Linda Dardarian have successfully completed a point of sale machine structured negotiations.

Motion 11: Mr. Edwards moved acceptance of Ms. Brunson’s, Ms. Al-Mohamed and Ms. Lovering’s reports. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Item 10: Ms. Ruschival reported to the Board an update on the 2006 convention. She thanked the Florida affiliate for the work they have done to make the convention the best for everyone. ACB used more rooms in the hotel than originally booked, which is a good sign.

This year there were several sponsorship categories from $5,000 down to $25. It is hoped next year the higher sponsorships will be designated to cover a specific convention cost such as printing of the programs.

Motion 12: Mr. Edwards moved to accept the convention update report from Ms. Ruschival. The motion carried on a voice vote.

Item 11: Mr. Trott reported that he had photo copies of all the documentation on the time share donated to ACB. He mailed off the information to the Minneapolis office, however, it was never received. Both he and Mr. Gardner have been working to reconstruct the information so that the time share can be used as a fund raiser for ACB.

Mr. Charlson stated he has raffle tickets for sale. The cost of each ticket is $50 and as many as five people can go together to purchase one. The proceeds will be used to purchase a CD duplicator for the National Office and to support ACB Radio. The drawing will be held December 1, 2006.

Motion 13: Mr. Beatty moved to accept the Resource Development Committee report. The motion carried on a voice vote.

President Gray announced that Mr. Beatty has served eight years as a board member and is going off the Board. Mr. Beatty was thanked for his contributions to the Board.

At approximately 12:00pm President Gray declared the general meeting in recess and that the board would go into executive session.

President Gray stated the purpose of the meeting would be to discuss a policy brought to the Board of Directors by the Office Review Committee.

President Gray announced that the Board of Directors considered a policy recommended by the Office Review Committee and no action was taken.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:30pm Eastern Daylight Time.

Respectfully Submitted,
Donna Seliger, Secretary