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The League Update

February 15, 2018

Dear Friend,

This week the U.S. Senate opened debate on various proposals of immigration including the Dream Act, border security and diversity visas. The League continues to focus on passage of the Dream Act in the House and the Senate. Please reach out to your Senators and Representatives using our action alert and encourage them to protect the 800,000 young people who were brought to the United States as children.

As we get closer to Convention in Chicago, here’s a reminder that the March 1 deadline for the submission of Program Planning report forms, proposed Bylaws amendments and hardship deferment requests is rapidly approaching. Please take advantage of these opportunities to help shape our organization’s future. Please read on below for more important Convention news!

We hope you had a wonderful day celebrating our anniversary yesterday. For 98 years, we've been working to improve our government and engage all citizens in the decisions that impact their lives. I am so proud of the work we are doing—and we couldn't do it without all of your tireless work and support. Thank you.

Chris Carson


Introducing Jason Johnson, LWVUS Director of Information Technology

LWVUS is excited to introduce our new Director of Information Technology, Jason Johnson. Before joining the League, Jason was most recently the Vice President of Information Technology with the National Quality Forum. He brings more than 20 years of experience in technology management, operations, application development, and digital strategy from a range of nonprofit, public, and private institutions. Learn more about Jason here.

Convention 2018

We hope to see you in June in Chicago for Convention 2018! To help you plan we’ve continued to update our website with helpful information and links. Please contact membership@lwv.org with any Convention related questions or concerns.

Registration is open! You can register online here. The Early Bird Registration rate is $450.
Wares Market: The LWVUS provides a designated area at Convention for a limited number of tables for Leagues wishing to exhibit and/or sell their wares to Convention attendees. More information and the application form can be found here.
2018 Awards: Share the great work that your League has done during the past biennium by applying for a Convention award. Nominations are being accepted in three categories.
Caucuses: During Convention 2018, a limited number of meeting rooms at the Chicago Hilton have been reserved for local and state Leagues to sponsor caucuses. If you are considering sponsoring a caucus that fosters members’ learning and action, please read the instructions and criteria before you use the online form to submit an application. If you have questions please contact membership@lwv.org.
LWV of Illinois Fundraiser: Tickets are now on sale for the Comedy Night fundraiser on Friday evening at the Chicago Hilton. This event is hosted by the LWV of Illinois and features The Second City.
Book Your Hotel Room: Room reservations at the Chicago Hilton are open and space is filling up quickly.

Program Planning

MARCH 1 DEADLINE Approaching!
Program Planning Instructions and Sample Survey Gizmo Form including Sample Word and PDF versions have been added to the Program Planning Leaders Guide and as a separate document on the Convention 2018 site. Program Planning Report forms are due March 1, 2018.

Share Your Studies on the LWV Clearinghouse

Do you have a study on Immigration, Death with Dignity, Charter Schools, or Redistricting to name a few hot topics? Even if your study is not recent, your work is valuable. Don’t make your fellow League members reinvent the wheel. Check out the LWV Clearinghouse and download the submission form. The process is simple, but if even filling out a simple form is more than you can manage these days, don’t worry. Just email your study materials to clearinghouse@leagueofwomenvoters.org and we’ll take it from there. Or, if you know of a study that should be on the Clearinghouse, drop us a line and we'll do our best to get hold of the study.

Track Your Election Year Impact

Every big election year, and moving forward, more frequently, LWVUS surveys state and local Leagues to ask a host of questions about your voter services and impact/issue/advocacy work. This critical data helps us plan and prioritize our work, guide training opportunities, raise needed grant funds to support state and local work, identify trends and partnership opportunities, and quantify our nationwide impact.
Want to know what kinds of questions we will be asking, or want ideas about what other Leagues are doing to make an impact? Take a look at our data collection spreadsheet and use the different tabs (Called: Voter Registration, Voter Education, Voter Protection and Preparation, Advocacy & Action Work, Visibility and Recruitment) to track your results all year long!

Grant Funding Available: Naturalization Ceremony Voter Registration

LWVEF is pleased to announce available grant funding to state and local Leagues conducting new citizen voter registration in 2018. Grant funding is only available for Leagues conducting voter registration at naturalization ceremonies. Applying Leagues must have plans to conduct registration at a minimum of five naturalization ceremonies before the 2018 general election. Applications are due March 1, 2018. Please see the grant application here.

Sample Debate/Voters’ Guide Questions and Policies

LWVEF is happy to provide suggested questions for your debates, forums and voters’ guides, relevant to the pressing issues in voters’ minds this election year. Find the sample questions here. It’s also a good time to revisit your policies for voters’ guides and debates. See our debates and forums FAQ and our voters’ guides best practices for help.

News of the Week

While Florida tries to make it easier for all people to receive concealed carry permits, LWV of Florida is pushing back to keep their communities safe from gun violence.
LWV California is standing up in support of a ballot initiative that will focus on how commercial properties in the state are taxed—and could raise billions of dollars more each year for schools and other programs.
LWV Texas is urging citizens to teach their children the civic duty of voting and create a "culture of voting".

League Sends Letter on Immigration to Congress

The League sent a letter outlining the necessary provisions that should be included in any immigration bill that moves forward. Members of the LWVUS Lobby Corps will be visiting offices on Capitol Hill on this issue in the coming weeks. Tell Congress to pass the Dream Act Now!

League Joins Letter Regarding Ozone Regulations

The League joined coalition partners in sending a letter to EPA Administrator Pruitt respectfully urging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to prioritize the protection of public health and finalize science-based “designations” for the 2015 ozone standard.

League Supports the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2017

The League joined a letter to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee that outlines support for the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2017. This legislation is scheduled for markup in the Judiciary Committee on February 15, 2018.

Opportunity to Comment on Proposal to Allow Offshore Drilling

The Trump Administration’s plan to allow drilling along coasts of the United States (except Florida) will begin moving ahead this year, if not modified after the public comment period. This will take our country in the wrong direction in addressing climate change. There is still time, but not much, to submit comments on behalf of your League opposing the proposed policy shift. All concerned Leagues and members are urged to do so. The LWVUS Climate Change Task Force has developed some background and message points to consider when commenting. Public comment is being received through the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) website until 11:59 Eastern on March 9th.

Deadline Extended for Comments on Clean Power Plan Rollback

The EPA has extended the deadline to comment on the planned rollback of the Clean Power Plan. Interested parties now have until April 26, 2018, to submit comments regarding this misguided action. The proposed rollback will greatly weaken the requirements to curb GHG emissions, taking our nation in the wrong direction on a critically important issue. All concerned Leagues and members are urged to submit comments opposing the weakening of this pivotal US climate policy. Please review the talking points and background information developed for this purpose. LWVUS submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency with regard to their plan to repeal the Clean Power Plan.

LWVUS Board Adopts 2018 Legislative Priorities

The LWVUS Board set the following as the legislative priorities for 2017:
1. Campaign for Making Democracy Work™ (MDW), with special emphasis on protecting voting rights.
2. Watchdog: Respond strategically on issues with LWV positions when needed, but focus on the Campaign for Making Democracy Work™.

The board recognizes that the coming year will be full of the unexpected. The main focus for LWVUS should continue to be our MDW Campaign, but other topics are expected to pop up that are important to the LWV—including the Dream Act and immigration reform, climate change and health care defense. There will doubtless be other, unpredictable legislative issues. Advocacy staff, working with the president and advocacy chair, will respond to watchdog issues as time allows. The board can re-examine or re-align legislative priorities as the situation may dictate throughout the coming year.

Join VOTE411 in 2018!

Does your community have an election in 2018? Are you interested in providing voters in your area with the candidate information they desperately need and turn to the League to find? In 2014 (the last comparable election), Leagues from 30 states partnered to provide candidate information to the nearly 1.5 million users who visited VOTE411. Participating Leagues paid, on average, only 12 cents per voter reached to provide the candidate information on the site, much cheaper than creating a printed guide! Participating Leagues have said about the program that “it is the most effective method of reaching large numbers of voters with information when they need it,” and “…VOTE411 lets candidates speak for themselves….”

We anticipate approximately 2.5 million users will visit VOTE411 in 2018 and Leagues from 25 states have already signed up to use VOTE411 to create critical ballot information these users will be looking for! Join your colleagues and be a part of this growing program to inform voters and gain significant visibility for your League’s work! If your League is interested in creating a voter guide or if you have any questions, contact Megan Brown (mbrown@lwv.org) and she’ll help walk you through the process!

Promote Your Candidate Debates and Forums on VOTE411!

Does your League have any candidate debates or forums coming up in 2018? Promoting your events on VOTE411 can help spread the word to voters in your communities. If you have any upcoming candidate debates or forums and would like us to post the information on VOTE411, please send the following information to Megan Brown (mbrown@lwv.org): event title, offices covered, date, time, location (venue name and address) and any other information voters might need.

Check out MyLO!

Need an easy-to-use website that will increase your online traffic? The League of Women Voters of California can help! Check out our new website service called My League Online (MyLO)!
MyLO is a Drupal-based website platform that harnesses modern technology tools for easy content sharing, syndication, accessibility, and mobile viewing essential to drive traffic and increase engagement for your League.
Read our MyLO Product FAQ for info on all of the new features and visit our MyLO Info page to view previous webinars and explore pricing. For additional questions, email MyLO@lwvc.org.

Third Quarter PMP Invoices

Third quarter PMP invoices will be mailed and made available for download from the LWV National Database on February 16, 2018. Any payments received after February 2, 2018, will not be reflected on the invoice. For any questions or concerns please email membership@lwv.org.

League Leaders

Special Notifications: Please do not reply to this message. For additional information, contact the individual listed or visit our websites: lwv.org and the League Management Site. To help keep your members informed, consider forwarding this bi-weekly message. Want to sign up to receive this email? Use this form. Please note that this is an internal communication that provides both announcements and opportunities meant only for your members and League, as well as updates on important news and events.


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