Meeting Minutes – Sept. 22, 2021

31st LD Democrats General Meeting Minutes 9.22.21

CALL TO ORDER /FLAG SALUTE (7:02) Brian welcomed attendees, called meeting to order and led the pledge of Allegiance.

APPROVAL OF AGENDA: Brian Gunn asked for motion (Yolanda Trout will not be present and is not requesting endorsement) Mark Boswell motioned to adopt, Linda Rutenberg seconded. Hearing no objections, the agenda is adopted.

READ/APPROVAL OF PRIOR MEETING MINUTES – Robin Macnofsky, July meeting Minutes will be adopted at a future meeting—(as temporary secretary in July) Tamara Stramel is unable to attend tonight.


Arlista Holman, Director, Auburn School Board – District 2 Currently retired member of the school district and is now a school board member: School is full time in-person, staff and students are happy to be back in the building. Q: How is it going with masks & vaccinations? Enrollment has been slow to return—some parents are still worried. 2020 kindergarten is 85%. 1st -12th now available as an online school. 500 students are enrolled online. Waiting list is active now—we need para educators, very few substitutes, we have bus drivers.

With regard to COVID, we have had 91 cases—90% of which were contracted outside of school. Contact Tracers have been hired for each school. The Teacher’s Union & Tacoma-Pierce Cty Public Health Dept. have been supportive; masks are widely used in schools. Students are back in classes, with desks spaced 3 feet apart. The vaccine mandate has been challenging. All school staff & contractors must be fully vaccinated by Oct. 18, with some requests for exemptions. The Bond which passed in 2016 to build new schools is on track– Pioneer Elementary and #16 elementary school opened last year, also Bowman Creek, Chinook. Lee Hill Elementary Schools are all new & opened on time. There is new Equity Training for all staff on inclusion issues. Educational equity and learning for each student to fulfill their potential. Pandemic Recovery Strategic Plan to support all students and those most impacted on issues of mental health and catching up on studies. The School Board has had some emails opposing masks; one phone caller voiced opposition –but it has not been a major concern. We are following State guidelines. Our focus is on students—and supporting equity. Brian G: Are their volunteer opportunities for community members? Arlista H: Not yet in the schools– to keep everyone safe. Robin M: How will the School Board react to the new children’s vaccine approval by Pfizer. AH: Not a requirement in WA until the state mandates.

Kate Baumgartner, Political Director, People for Patty Murray: Kate serves as a resource for Patty’s campaign or politically related issues. Busy summer, senate passed the Bipartisan deal—now focused on Build Back Better, and the budget and Infrastructure—with funding for WA state priorities: public transit, climate action, EV in school buses & electric ferries, clean energy, and wildfire fighting,–and supporting families in WA. The Senate has adopted budget resolutions, as Chair of Health & Education—issues like Universal Paid Leave, the Nat’l Childcare Program and Universal Pre-K, workforce training, free Community College, climate action and, new affordable housing is very important to our community; Patty met with President Biden today to hammer out final details. Voting rights are front-of-mind for all Democrats: the Freedom to Vote Act, to beat back corruption & gerrymandering on voting rights; Lifting the Filibuster—Patty remains committed to that position; she has endorsed Citizens United. Also critical to pushback on Draconian restrictions on abortion—long held action to codify Roe V Wade. Amber OW: What is the plan to expand capacity to manufacture vaccines to get them out globally? Kate B: U.S. is purchasing millions of doses to distribute globally. Brian G: We can all let Patty know that we support these efforts for global vaccinations. Great to hear she is working hard on Build Back Better.

Devon Davenport, Campaign Manager, Dr. Kim Schrier for Congress 8th CD. Nice to see everyone again. Updates on congress: (2) of Kim’s healthcare & climate provisions– Medicare Vision Act to include vision coverage, and the fire prevention legacy for roads and trails to help with environmental clean up –made it into the infrastructure package. Forefront of our push is for rapid testing and vaccines. Dr Kim is the ONLY Prochoice pediatrician in Congress –-pushing back against the new TX legislation. Dr Schrier was invited to join President Biden a month ago for the bill signing & has helped to secure funding for a VA clinic at JBLM. On the Campaign front: a poll by the GOP showed this a 1-point race against yet unnamed challenger. Going to be a tight race—regardless of the redistricting outcome. Ali Erdman new campagn coord for the 8th CD: Hosting an event this Saturday re Natl Public Lands Day movie night for volunteer reunion. Sign up info in the chat. We have her back and eill out knocking doors gain to support her. Public Lands Movie Night & Volunteer Reunion · Kim Schrier for Congress (

Rebecca Duran, Field Organizer, for WA State Democrats: action opportunities around the upcoming election (ballots mailed in October). FL & GA for senate runoff, suburban to rural areas. Olympic peninsula up to south King Cty. Large turf. Turnout as many Dems as possible. First election since Jan 6—so need to turn out the Dems. Build neighborhood teams: self-sufficient teams led by a team leader for a specific area, plus core team members, to launch a phone bank. Contort captains, or canvassing events, and add more volunteers. This is an off year—so hard for people to get engaged again. Auburn city council & school board are critical races. NOTE: Rebecca can only do “turn out,” –not ‘persuasion’—that’s the LD’s job. So–working on campaigns is VIP, but volunteers for the state party are also really critical right now. The Auburn City Council race is huge—we are looking for people to launch a neighborhood canvass, to recruit people to sign up and help organize and train. People can meet-up at the Starbucks or other community locations, and assist new volunteers, “Here’s your list number and I can help you get started.” Canvassing guidelines, safety issues, etc, Arlista H: With Covid, should you always have someone with you? Rebecca D: Bring a friend if you can. If you are ok going alone—that’s your choice. Michael M: Focus is on canvassing, what about phone banking, Rebecca D: Yes—it’s available now Tuesday & Thursdays out of the Tacoma field office. Recent data has shown that door-knocking is the most effective method to get out the vote. Robin M: what about outreach to BIPOC communities. Multilingual lit? Rebecca D: We have no printed lit this year—for many reasons. Up to the LDs. Next year will be different scenario.


Hanan Amer, Auburn City Council #4 Campaign is going well—TY for the endorsement. Canvas on Oct 9—still need more volunteers.

Kate Baldwin, Auburn City Council #2 Hello 31st Dems— Over the past year a lot of burnout among volunteers. We are to going to coord together to maximize Dem support. The 31st LD is hosting 10/9. Afternoon doorbelling. The links are on her page. Trying to avoid game day for Hawk’s fans. The 31st has been great so far—hope we can mobilize more people. Lakeland Hills area will be 10/9 canvas focus. Also–MLK Labor Council and King Cy Realtors have given us both endorsements. We want to serve and help our communities.

Michael McCullough, Candidate for Mayor, City of Bonney Lake: Home ( We had our first canvassing was a success so thank you to all who came. Wake up call 42% in the primary—but the other 2 GOP candidates split the vote—but remain hopeful that some will swing to me, feedback is that local people need to pay attention. It is non-partisan election—but you can’t away from that question. Some negative response: a large banner on 410 was vandalized—will try to turn that to his vantage. Working on local realtor association endorsement. Negotiating on certain issues. Campaign is going well. Tamara Stramel been great liaison for resources. Elevating the office and campaign to let people know throughout the county.

Kim-Khanh Van, King County Council, #9 Elect Kim-Khanh Van for King County Council, District 9., 2021 (

Hamdi Mohamed: Conrad, Field Operations, on behalf of Hamdi Mohamed, Port of Seattle #3 (Hamdi is at a fundraiser with Ilhan Omar tonight),this race impacts the entire King County, including Enumclaw. Hamdi is running against another Democrat—my focus is on field work, phone banking and canvassing—in such a large area—we are relying heavily on phone banking to reach more voters. October events will be posted soon on the website, you can join our phone banking from anywhere. Wed, Th & Sunday—but not during Seahawks games. Hamdi Mohamed for Port Commission | (

TREASURER’S REPORT – Rudy Adams: No Treasurers Report tonight; the August 2021 report will be approved at our October meeting.


Chair, Brian Gunn: 3 VIP issues tonight: Supporting our local candidates is critically important. Volunteering is more urgent than ever—anything you can do to help—

    1. Redistricting: The Redistricting Committee has (2) Democrats and (2) GOP members appointed by state legislature. Based on the 2020 census—this will change all of the LD & CD boundaries to determine ‘who’s in—who’s out’—it affects who can be elected in the 31st and who will be eligible to become/remain a member. Please take a look. In some of these maps you may find yourself in a different LD, especially if you live in Lake Tapps / Bonney Lake / Edgewood. Nothing is set-in-stone yet. All 4 members of the redistricting committee created different maps. Further negotiations will be split along party lines—so it will likely go to the state supreme court. Also, there are links on the website with training for how to participate. i.e., If you believe that the new redistricting maps separate a community of interest that should stay together. Participants will only have 90 seconds to comment—so you must draft a concise statement. Reach out to me for more info. Draw Your WA | Washington State 2021 Redistricting Commission
    2. Tamara is unable to be here tonight, but wanted me to share this with everyone: Pierce Cty has a PCO Challenge—if you can increase the turnout in your precinct PCO—and get more people to vote—highest percent increase over last year’s primary—you will be eligible for this amazing prize on the Victoria Clipper. Reward / incentive to get PCO’s more fired up for the 2021 election. It’s all about turnout in these odd years: “Please pay attention and turn in your ballots.”
    3. CleanEnergy for America— We want to see the Build Back Better budget passed (Senator Patty Murray & Rep Dr. Schrier are both working on this budget) pushing for clean energy. This robust bill as the best opportunity to get legislation passed that can substantially reduce our greenhouse gas emissions—while being mindful of the BIPOC communities who are most impacted by disruption caused by climate change. VIP for our elected officials to hear our support for this BBB budget. These are key targets to get the message out that WA supports this bill. Want to thank all of our Reps for voting for the first version of the ill—but this is what we need to make an impact on bringing down greenhouse gasses. Call Rep. Schrier: Hold strong on the reconciliation budget must include strong provisions to meet the challenge of climate change NOW. They are with us-but they need to hear from their constituents that this IS a priority her voters want funded. Send an email, call the local office, call their hotline, this is a crucial time to turn the tide on climate change.

Vice Chairs (Pierce & King), Sarah E: Vice Chair King Cty. First in-person canvas since 2019, we walked areas in Bonnie Lake. Amber O-W & Sarah walked together. Good conversations. It’s so rewarding to talk to other people with issues that you care about—they may never have had anyone knock on their door before. This is the grassroots of America. To build local connection with our neighbors about issues that affect them. Really hard to make personal connection on the phone: 2 more upcoming, canvassing in Auburn on 10/9. The next canvassing on 10/16 will be in Edgewood for Christi Keith. FYI: We wore masks. We stood well back from the door—no one was upset with us for coming by. Some people were actually happy to see us (Dems) in their neighnb0rhoof. Brian: much appreciated for Sarah & Amber for stepping up.

Committeepersons (King County, Pierce County, & WA State Dems) Christi K—Focus on redistricting in the next State Party Central committee meeting. Christi is now chairing the advocacy committee for WA State Dems, setting the agenda for state party legislative advocacy on specific legislation. Amber O-W: “Door-knocking was awesome—this was my first time. It’s a lot of fun, so please don’t be hesitant. Mark Dunning:—no meeting yet this month: King Cty (Mark is an elections observer—you need to be trained, he encourages people to do the training. “King Cty is a model for the entire country.”


No new endorsements for this meeting

ADJOURNMENT (8:30pm) Mark Dunning moved to adjourn, seconded by Sarah Edwards

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