General Assembly Minutes 2012-01-27

Agenda

Assign roles, respect check, approve agenda, donations – 5
Welcome, consensus review – 5
Announcements – 5
Working and affinity group reports and proposals – 10 (+23)
Occupy Gainesville news – 5
Wrinkle in time break – 5
Other Occupy news – 5
Open discussion – 10 (+5)
General proposals – 5
Open floor – 10
Announcements and appreciation – 5
Clean up, load up, ride out (or bed down)

Total time: 98 minutes

Roles

Facilitator – John B
Vibe checker – Karrie
Time keeper – Lars
Stack taker – Karin
Greeter/guide – Lars
Note taker – Walton

Welcome

Preston

Zach, who started in Miami and then moved to West Palm Beach, and is here for Rockupy

Jamie, who also started out in Miami and then went to West Palm, who’s here to see the OG format and how we function

Doc and Angelica, who bring greetings from DC; they’re here to check out OG, and then head to Tampa and then Daytona Beach

Announcements

Chris and Ed regret that their presence has been sparse—their truck is still in impound, and they’re awaiting an eviction notice after their judge automatically sided with the property management company.

Rockupy II will commence tomorrow night at 8:30 at 1982 on University Ave. We still need volunteers to make tasty treats to help generate donations and celebrate our Capricorns. We also need some people to speak between bands, for about 5 minutes each, about OG and encouraging participation. Some last-minute promotion wouldn’t hurt, either.

Karrie will be MIA this weekend—she’ll be in Tampa on Saturday, celebrating her own and her daughter’s birthdays.

The internet admin group worked up some forum guidelines. They are available in the Moderation Feedback forum. They would like to incorporate needs and concerns before bringing it to GA for approval. (To see the forums and comment, you need to be a verified user; to become verified, please email internet [at] occupygainesville.net with your name, your working group, and your handle/username.)

Chris has a connection that can provide us with $300 worth of nonperishable food for $40. Someone from Food and Comfort needs to contact Chris ASAP.

Working and affinity group reports and proposals

Serco affinity group, via Lars

Proposal (passes): SERCO meetings will henceforth be scheduled at the convenience of the organizers. The meetings are still open to whoever would like to participate, but Saturday night GAs will no longer be dedicated to SERCO. Time and location will be provided at least a week in advance.

Women’s affinity group, via Michelle

Sunday, at the CMC, at 5:30, the affinity group will host an event on the topics of raising consciousness and how women are being held down.

Proposal (passes): this event will be an official OG event, and as such will appear on the calendar

Internet working group, via Karrie

The site has been doing some funky stuff, but the team is working on it.

We need 13 more “likes” on the Facebook community page. Tell your friends!

We still need someone who knows some HTML to take over maintaining the Tumblr account. Contact Karrie if you’re interested.

If you can’t see the working and affinity group forums on the site, you need to get your account verified. Email internet [at] occupygainesville.net with your name, the group you belong to, and your handle/username.

Media working group, via Chris

The livestream account and/or internet connection was hacked, and we weren’t broadcasting live on J20. However, they got lots of great footage, which will be uploaded tonight. But, thanks to Occupy Rochester, all of Dr. West’s speech, and other events during the day, were livestreamed to Global Revolution. Please thank them for their help.

Move to Amend affinity group, via Michelle

Lots of people signed up for more information on J20. There will be a meeting for newcomers on 3 February at the CMC, at 5:30. If you have any footage of J20, please email the video or send a link, so the group can pass it on to the Move to Amend national office.

Occupy art affinity group, via Michelle

There will be a national day of artistic action on 12 February. The group may have a paint party, maybe even next weekend, maybe at the mansion.

Direct action working group, via Michelle

Another national day of action, 29 February, Stop Corporations. The group needs to meet to begin planning for this.

Whiskey affinity group, via Michelle

The group will be hitting the bars tonight, and they’ll be taking Rockupy posters with them.

Occupy Gainesville news

A contingent of OGers took a road trip this past week; they participated in a protest, faced down the belligerent Boca police, among other things. [See Other Occupy news, below, for more details.]

Todd Chase cancelled our meeting with him on Monday, 30 January. We’re still scheduled to meet with Thomas Hawkins at 1PM that same day.

The OG Info Booth affinity group met today. To find out what they talked about, check the forums, or talk to Annette.

Other Occupy news

Occupy Jacksonville occupied the debate last night; they were holding a sign that said “End the Fed”

Our roadtrippers visited four Occupations. Occupy Tampa was small, but has an awesome setup, positive vibes, and good relations with their neighbors. Occupy West Palm Beach County is also small, but has a 24 hour occupation, also has good vibes, electricity at night, and a nice kitchen setup. Occupy Miami is experiencing some conflict between the “sleepers” and “organizers”. Occupy Daytona Beach holds their GAs at a pizza place and use an interesting, open, and positive process.

Occupy Tampa’s numbers have improved since they moved locations to a private space where they have permission to occupy 24/7.

The National Park Service will dissolve Occupy DC on Monday, threatening arrests if sleeping structures aren’t taken down.

Open discussion

Occupy Jacksonville has a bike generator, donated by their local unions. We should look into getting one of those, too.

Ahren: inspired by the camp at Tallahassee, spoke with Scherwin Henry today about occupying a public park or non-plaza space. He seemed open to the idea; Ahren will continue to pursue the topic with him. He likes camping, but was discouraged by the rather inhospitable environment at the plaza.

Ian: North East Park is huge and often not fully used.

Chris: 24/7 occupation would reattract sleepers unwilling to risk sleeping without permission; Veterans Memorial Park on Tower Rd. is huge with lots of activity, but a small secluded area that’s usually quiet, and with newly-renovated facilities

Michelle: would prefer a central location with relevance to our cause

Zot: why choose only one location? Also, maybe find a spot to stash a lockable shed or two. We’re a listening project for people have not been listened to by those with governmental and economic power. We provide empowering alternatives.

Karrie: Smokey Bear Park (NE 15th St., just north of 23rd Ave) is mostly unused; the city is cleaning out the old forestry department buildings

Ahren: with a single, permanent location we could set up a library, kitchen, and other structures (like Occupy Tallahassee)

Lars: we can only measure success if we have concrete goals. Having a permanent location will help draw people to experiment with intentional community. Most of our political organizing doesn’t take place on-site. But successful Florida Occupations all have permission to occupy their spaces, and we don’t have the numbers right now to force the city to let us have the plaza. All of this sounds like a good topic for the strategy working group; maybe on 4 February, at 4 PM, and/or on 5 February?

Michelle: citizen involvement in local politics is pretty much available from 9-5. A 24 hour Occupation would allow a greater window for participation.

Chris: with the government trying to shut down political organization and activism online (SOPA, PIPA, ACTA), a permanent community would provide an alternative venue for the 99% to gather, discuss, organize, plan, protest

John F: we could schedule a group sleepover, well in advance so that people could accommodate their normal routines and responsibilities. The symbolic, motivational, and focal value of what we do is more important than we can understand, since we’re the doers; but we give the community something to grab onto (“that’s where Occupy is”). We can’t sustain a widely-attended sleepover, but with a large group sleepover could make a point, especially by having the event somewhere that we’re not expected.

Ahren: 24/7 Occupation is a bridge to communal living, changing the way we live to become closer and more connected, instead of spending our times locked up in concrete boxes

No general proposals this evening (though a new Money and Banking Issues affinity group was formed—watch for it on the forums, keep your ears open at GA)

Open floor

John F: has been a liaison to Occupy Supply (Firedog Lake) for about 6 weeks; they’re holding a contest amongst Occupations, with prizes of tents and computers (distributed according to who will put these items to the best use). As individuals, not as OG, please consider whether we deserve this support, in terms of competing with other Occupations. It would be wise to give it a shot.

Ian: has been absent for a few weeks, dealing with some issues (not all of them bad). He wants us to know that he loves Occupy and all of us, he supports us, and he’s here to help.

Michelle: GAs are cool. She’s been absent for a while, but she’s missed us, and we’re all pretty.

Lars: appreciates our sense of process. The road trip illuminated OG’s personal responsibility to respect and listen to one another. It’s good to be back.

Zot: appreciates Annette and Phil’s contribution to our daytime plaza presence, and Coral’s online presence.

Announcements and appreciation

There are two upcoming conference calls: 1 February, at 9 PM, amongst Florida Occupations; and 5 February, at 8 PM, amongst Occupations in the Southeastern region. It would be helpful if OGers would register and participate, and even take on some of the roles. If you’re interested, please talk to Lars.

The SERCO affinity group will meet tomorrow at 7PM, at Spike and Erin’s. Details will be posted on the calendar and Facebook.

Move to Amend has webinars on the first Tuesday of every month, at 8 PM. You can check the site for details, or talk to Michelle. Move to Amend will have a meeting on Wednesday, and another on Friday (see group report, above).

18 Comments

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