Annual Meeting

Task Force to "Get Out the 2020 Census Count"

The concept of the Task Force began with the organization of the Town's Complete Count Committee in October 2019. We have been working and partnering our efforts with the Jones Library, the Senior Center, Rep. Mindy Domb, LWVMA, MA Counts/Voter Table and MA Immigration and Advocacy Coalition to ensure that Amherst, as the 9th hardest to count community in the state, receives its fair share of federal funding, fair share of Congressional seats, and accurate information for fair state and local redistricting.

Highlights of the year:

Membership

The Amherst League has 187 members in 159 households and 21 life members. This year members received a League history in honor of the 80th anniversary and a program booklet.

Members received cards appropriate to member's needs.

Submitted by Phyllis Lehrer

Health Care Committee

The Health Care Committee (HCC) has been stable in its membership this year, but had a minor re-organization. We started out (through February) in a continuing affiliation with the Amherst Area Hub of Western Mass Medicare for All. Then WMM4A announced that they were re-thinking the strategy of local hubs by geography and are opting for hubs by constituency (working through such venues as faith-based organizations, (medical) provider groups, universities).

The League supported two projects to add affordable housing in Amherst.

East Street School

This project to build between 15 and 36 rental units for low-income individuals and families at the site of the old East Street School has received approval and was put out for proposals to do the work. Unfortunately, no company wants to bid until the town does further research on the amount of hazardous materials in the existing building (mostly asbestos) and how much of the land is actually buildable (wetlands issues). Those issues have not been resolved yet.

The Committee was created to organize events celebrating two different but related events, the founding of the League of Women Voters on February 14, 1920, and the passage on August 26, 1920, of the 19th Amendment enabling women to vote.

The Task Force on Funding Requests was created by the Steering Committee in response to comments from members at the Annual Meeting to put more League funds into action. New Steering Committee members Ann Kieser and Bonnie Isman met with veteran members Rebecca Fricke and Deanna Pearlman and crafted a program of grant opportunities that would support positions already endorsed by the Amherst League.

The League conducts outreach for voter registration and seeks to inform potential voters on how to register to vote, how to obtain absentee ballots in Massachusetts and in other states, and about Amherst’s new Council form of government. Voter information and registration assistance were provided at a climate change conference in June 2019, at the Town of Amherst Block Party in September, at the October Candidates Forum, and by reaching out to students with home room signups at the Amherst Regional High School in February.

Zoom Protocols for Annual Meeting

Annual meeting will be conducted as much like an in-person meeting as possible. The meeting will be chaired by Adrienne Terrizzi. Joan Temkin will be our parliamentarian, and Nancy DiMattio will be the recorder. Kathy Campbell will be the Zoom host and technical co-chair of the meeting. All participants, except those with pre-assigned speaking roles in the meeting, will be muted by the host unless recognized by the co-chair. Be sure that you understand how to "raise your hand" in order to be recognized. You may also raise your hand to second a motion.

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