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The DC Voter
League of Women Voters of the District of Columbia
Vol. 77, No. 4, April 2001

Making Our Voices Heard — Making Our Votes Count

733 15th Street, N.W., Suite 432, Washington, DC 20005
202/347-3020,  fax: 202/347-2522
Website:, E-mail:

President’s Corner
Tax Day Protest: “Bonfires of the 1040s”
Voting Reform Forums
News from the Units
Members News
League Members Serve on Court Excellence Project
Now Available
Two New Committees Forming
IR Committee
Calendar, April 2001

Annual Meeting

81st LWVDC Annual Meeting and Dinner

April 26, 2001
5:30 - 9:00 pm

Gallaudet University
Kellogg Conference Center

Guest Speaker
Dr. Paul Vance, DCPS Superintendent

See flyer in this issue for more information and reservation form.


Your Board is proud to nominate Anna Marsh, past LWVDC president and current 15t vice president, to be recognized for her service to the community. "Super Senior Day," sponsored by the Citizens Advisory Council of Iona House, will be held on Thursday, April 5. The event is from 2-4 at Metropolitan Memorial Methodist Church on 3401 Nebraska Ave., NW. We'll see you there.

Our year ends on Thursday, April 26 when we elect officers and adopt near programs for study and action and a new budget. Dr. Paul Vance, Superintendent of the DC Public Schools, is our featured speaker.

We have just received a phone call from the National Student/Parent Mock Presidential Election committee in Arizona announcing that our League has won one of three awards given out by the National Association of School Administrators for our Student election project last fall. Congratulations to Elaine Melmed and Reggie Yancey who spearheaded this effort which involved 200 teachers and over 100 DC schools.

It doesn't seem possible that this is my last column. I thank you all for your support of me and of the League. I appreciate having the opportunity to work with so many outstanding people and on issues of importance to our community. — Elizabeth M. Martin, President

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TAX DAY PROTEST: "Bonfires of the 1040s"

April 16 at 5:30 p.m. DC Vote and a number of cosponsors, of which the League of Women Voters of DC is one, will rally at picturesque Upper Senate Park, Constitution Ave. (between New Jersey and Delaware Avenues) for the largest protest ever against taxation without representation in the nation's capital.

What: * Bring copies of your federal tax forms to destroy. *Speeches by civil rights leaders  *Music by Chuck Brown
When: Monday, April 16, 2001, 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm
Where: Upper Senate Park On Constitution Ave. just across from the Capitol (between Delaware and New Jersey Avenues).

Chuck Brown, the local king of go-go music, will provide entertainment. Desmond Tutu has been invited to speak but has not yet confirmed. The rally is to protest our lack of full voting representation in Congress even though we pay full federal income taxes. Bring your friends and neighbors to the "Bonfire of the 1040s Tax Day Protest." The city, Congress, the states, and the world need to know that we are disenfranchised. — Kathy Schmidt, DC Vote Liaison (232-6460)

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The LWVUS Education Fund hosted an outstanding forum on the Voter's Experience on March 15th. A second forum is scheduled for April 19, 2001, from 12:30 pm to 4 pm, at the National Press Club, 529 14th Street NW. Titled "The Election Workforce," this forum "will explore ways that state and local election officials can enhance the relationship between voters and the workforce they encounter at the polls. Areas of discussion will include the partisan nature of many of these jobs, as well as the issues associated with recruitment and training of election officials and polling place volunteers." RSVP to the LWVUS office (429-1965) if you are planning to attend. A third forum on Alternative Voting Techniques is planned for mid-May, but a date has not been set.

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Unit Meetings on Trade turned out 44 LWVDC members in February some of whom described the discussion as "lively" and responsive to many questions. There will be no Unit Meetings (or Unit Council Meeting) in April because of Annual Meeting.

The Units will next meet to discuss our Local Program in May - watch for details in your May DC VOTER. Unit members should also be thinking about next year's Unit leadership. Let your Unit Chair know if you are willing to help. — Sheila Keeny, Unit Director (966-1692)

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New Members: A hearty welcome to new members: Janet Brown, Esther Sarah Merves and Alexsandra Stewart

Contributions: We gratefully thank members who made additional contributions to the League: Jean Fleming in memory of Margaret Myers; and Lillian Smuckler.

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Barbara Yeomans, 3rd vice president for national program, contacted a number of League members to serve on the Court Excellence project. We are indebted to: Natalie Black, Connie Fortune, Frances Gemmill, Priscilla Goodby, Virginia Gorman, Helen Mitchell, Kathleen Shea, Connie Tate and Pat Hallman who observed the court system from February through April. Leaguers are busy people and we appreciate their time on this important endeavor.

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Publication : The League office has received a new publication from the Alliance for Better Campaigns titled "Gouging Democracy: How the Television Industry Profiteered on Campaign 2000. "

Videos: "Free Trade: Boosting Growth in Developing Countries," Speakers: David Dollar and Jo Marie Griesgraber (11-8-00), 1 hr. "Global Food Fights Over Agricultural Biotechnology," Speaker: Per Pinstrup-Andersen (01-10-01), 1 hr 10 min.

To borrow these items, call the DC League office 347-3020.

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League members whose interests match these new committees are encouraged to contact the chair of either or a member and attend the next meeting. Health Care Committee: Formed to monitor the District's actions in the various health care areas of the city and to advocate for the League of Women Voters' health care positions by attending city meetings, giving testimony when necessary, and reporting to the membership. The chair is Natalie Howard (882-8762). Other members are: Susan Rao, Joan Domike, Barbara Yeomans, Naomi Glass, Sheila Willet. Committee for Affordable Housing: Formed to advocate for affordable housing in the District through presentation of the League's Housing positions in letters and testimony. The chair is Julia Cuniberti (387-0122). Other members are: Liz Martin, Elinor Hart, Janet Brown, June Baskin, Eleanor Johnson, Sheila Willet.

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In February, the Committee conducted five Unit. Meetings on Global Trade attended by 44 LWVDC members. LWVDC members also attended a three panel Symposium on Trade arranged for the LWVUS Task Force on Trade by Committee (and Task Force) member Janet Burmester on March 2. If you missed the symposium or the distinguished speakers at earlier Globaphobia seminars arranged by Burrnester, videos of these events can be borrowed from the LWVDC Office. This focus on trade is intended to prepare our members to consider concurring early next year on a new statement of the League's position on trade being developed by LWVUS.

The Committee also continues to follow developments at the UN in preparation for a similar concurrence on a new UN position to be developed following the Trade concurrence. Doris Schapira, the League's UN observer, has again prepared a yearly UN Wrap Up for the year 2000 describing developments at the UN and the League's participation in the UN conference on Beijing + 5 at which the commitments made at the Beijing Women's Conference in 1995 were reviewed.

She reminded us of the upcoming Special Session of the General Assembly on Children planned for September 2001, ten years after the World Summit on Children. And she noted that in December 2000 the League submitted its first quadrennial report to the UN Economic and Social Council.

This report is available on the LWVUS website at Call Sheila Keeny for a copy of Schapira's report. — Sheila Keeny, Co-Chair, (966-1692)*

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The March 2 Trade-Update Symposium, arranged by the LWVUS Task Force (thanks largely to Task Force and DC League member Janet Burmester), was excellent. Believing that the information gained by those attending should be available to all leaguers, regional and national, the LWVDC paid almost $900 to have the symposium video-taped. The NCA board voted to contribute $400 to LWVDC to help defray the costs. Additional expense will be incurred to have the video edited and multiple copies produced. Already, an earlier tape has been borrowed by one of our local leagues. Contributions from local leagues or individuals to further defray these costs would be much appreciated by the DC or NCA league. All of us will be asked to participate in reaching concurrence on trade issues and it behooves us (and all leaguers) to be as well informed as possible.

. Some April dates to remember:

  • NCA April Board Meeting date has been changed to Monday, April 23, 2001, 1 10 am to noon at the LWVUS offices, 1730 M Street NW, 10th floor.
  • LWVUS Board will meet Saturday, April 21 and Sunday, April 22, 2001. Call me if you would like to observe.
  • NCA'S Pre-LWVUS Council Meeting will take place at 10 am, Friday, April 27, 2001, at the LWVUS offices. We will discuss National's proposed 2001-2002 budget, program changes and any other issues you raise. All are welcome!

With all this on the books, it won't be surprising if our paths cross. — Naomi Glass, President 686-0124,

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Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
2 3 4 10 a.m., LWVDC Board Mtg., 1730 M St., NW, 10th Flr. 5 2 p.m., Super Senior Day (See President's corner) 6
9 10 May DC Voter Deadline 11 10 a.m., Education Committee, 733 15th St., NW, #432 12 13
16 5:30 p.m., Tax Protest Day 17 18 19 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m., LWVUS Forum, "The Election Workforce," National Press Club, 529 14th St., NW, RSVP 429-1965 20
23 10 a.m., LWV/NCA Board Mtg., 1730 M St., NW, 10th Flr. 24 25 26 5:30-9:00 p.m., 81st Annual Meeting and Dinner 27 10 p.m., LWV/NCA Pre-Council Mtg., 1730 M St., NW, 10th Floor
May DC Voter mailed

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