A look ahead...
September 7, 2001, Noon-1:00 p.m.
September 4 and 17, 2001, 5:00 p.m.
September 19, 2001, 5:10-6:30 p.m.
October 5, 2001, Noon-1:00 p.m.
November 2, 2001, Noon-1:00 p.m.
October 23, 2001, 7 - 9 p.m.
October 25, 2001, 7 - 9 p.m
The League of Women Voters values diversity in its members. In principle
and in practice, the League knows no barriers on the basis of age, creed,
disability, gender, national origin, race or sexual orientation, and encourages
full participation in and contribution to the organization by all its
It is time for the League to come together for a little pre-season practice of our own. Never before has LWVRRV enjoyed such collection of time, energy, talent and money at its disposal. As your new "quarterback," I hope to direct the League to even greater achievements. We will be joining forces with LWVMN to put on a Leadership Workshop in October. We will be a major sponsor of the Leaders of Today and Tomorrow conference held to inspire college age women leaders in our community. We will be working with the newly rejuvenated LWVND to study election administration reform throughout the state. These are just a few of the many projects already slated for the upcoming League year.
All events will give us ample opportunity to show through the media the impact we are having on the communities where League is located. It is through increased publicity that I believe we will be able to build on the incredible success that League Fund raiser Kathie Kvalvog has already achieved. In addition, I would like to energize the entire League membership to be involved in some of our projects throughout the year.
I feel that we may have lost touch with some of the membership. I would like to use this year to reinvigorate those members and involve them again.
League Membership Chair Suzanne Dobbins will be putting together a "Meet
and Greet" function this fall to "give members opportunity to
meet project leaders and discover the many different opportunities to
volunteer within the League. From giving five minutes of your time to
donating as much of your time as you would like, from working as a representative
in the speaker's bureau to working behind the scene setting up voter service
forums, there is a place for you in the League. I look forward to your
involvement and to this exciting League season!
--Andrea Sather, President
I attend public meetings on a fairly regular basis, including the voters service forums sponsored by our organization and others. I envision how wonderful it would be if people turned out to hear and question candidates for the legislature, commission, school board and other elective offices. There are relatively smaller audiences at these meetings. The League will continue to search for ways to involve people with their government. Meanwhile we can all appreciate those who take an interest and voice their opinion whatever it may be.
--Audrey Richmond 235-3904 or Richmond@cord.edu
begins local program study
At the annual meeting in March, the League of Women Voters of the Red River Valley adopted a study of local boards and commissions, their purpose, meeting times and membership with emphasis on the appointment process.
A committee began meeting in May. Members Mary Davies, Suzanne Dobbins, Barb Headrick and Marlene Batterberry limited the study to city government. They are gathering information on all of the Fargo, Moorhead and West Fargo citizen boards and commissions. The committee is developing a survey to send to board/committee members.
We need members from each of the communities to help with the study. We will work around your schedules and interests. We need people to interview board members, to observe meetings and to analyze survey results. This is an excellent way to find out how government operates and will be good visibility for the League. Some of the questions we are asking :
Are there barriers to appointment? Does committee membership reflect demographics of the community? Is citizen volunteer time well used? Is there training/recognition of board members?
Please let Mary Davies (233-2175 or email@example.com)
know if you are interested in helping with this study.
Campaign Finance Reform
requests funds for branch
Public hearings on the budget are being held on Tuesday,
Sept. 4 and Monday, Sept. 17 in the Fargo City Commission chambers. The
input will determine whether or not the store-front library project goes
Rapid growth has resulted in many new neighborhoods. In these areas there seems to be much more friction about "not in my backyard" types of concerns than in older parts of the city. The commission considered an ordinance to limit the height of ham radio towers, and adopted an ordinance relating to the types of businesses that can be operated from a private home.
--Carol Sawicki, Observer
In June, the Council voted not to support the Family Health Care Center with a $10,000 contribution from Community Development Block Grant Funds. The money would be used for equipment at the Moorhead center. The issue was brought back for a vote on August 6th and the funding was approved.
Debate continued over proposals for higher density housing vs. current land use zoning. Representatives from several neighborhoods appeared to protest increasing housing density from what had been set out in the city planning ordinance. A task force is studying the many housing needs in the city.
A proposal was brought forward to limit the number of hours
residents could set their garbage out on the berm for collection. Several
council members felt people left garbage on the boulevard too long, making
it unsightly. Much of the concern was directed at college neighborhoods.
The proposal was ultimately voted down but council is looking at a city
policy that would discourage residents from placing garbage out before
the pick-up day.
--Mary Davies, Observer
--Audrey Richmond, Observer
Carpenter developed the system for the purpose of defining all aspects of board function in order to ensure the achievement of board-stated goals. An article by Carpenter and Carpenter on the web site (ww.policygovernance.com/home.htm) cites a number of resources which purport that many boards are largely non-functional or at least not doing what they are supposed to do. It is Carpenter's belief that aboard exists to be accountable for the workings of the organization which it serves. It has total authority until it delegates it to someone else. Logical and consistent principles are required and the discipline to put them into effect. The board must be in the position to understand the various views held in the community about the purpose of the organization. It should lead the organization according to its perceptions of the values and judgments of these stakeholders.
Although the board has authority and responsibility to ownership, it must delegate actual work to others. This management staff must be clear about expectations, personalize the assignment of duties and check whether they have been met.
Carpenter uses a number of terms in discussing his model: Ends are the board-defined expected consumer results and the worth (cost) of these re- suits. Means are the personal and financial planning and details as to how the ends will be met. The board is not responsible for producing ends but assigns this responsibility to a CEO who is responsible and accountable to the board. Governance process in- volves the establishment of policies. Executive limitations set forth the limits of behavior for the CEO and staff and should define unacceptable behavior clearly.
As long as the ends are accomplished and the unacceptable means are avoided, the CEO can make any further decisions as to means. (To be continued.)
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