April 2012- Volume 37, Issue 47

In This Issue
President's Message
Article Headline
Justice Committee
Government Committee
Voter Service
Social Policy Committee
Climate Change Committee
Spotlight on Jeanette Boucher
Membership Committee
Book Club
News from National
News from State
About Us
Month at a Glance

4/5 at 9:45 am
Climate Change Committee 

4/10 at 2 pm
Book Club
  Calistoga's, Airport Road

4/11 at 11:30 am
Social Policy Comm

4/16 at 9:30 am 

Justice Committee
Community Room
North Collier Government Center

4/30 at 10:00 am
LWVCC Annual Meeting
Naples Hilton
April 3, 2012 General Meeting

Are Corporations People?

Nick Penniman, President of United Republic in Washington, D.C., will discuss the corrupting influence of well-financed special interests over American politics.

Nick Penniman is the former executive director of the Huffington Post Investigative Fund, publisher of Washington Monthly magazine, and director of the Schumann Center for Media and Democracy.

United Republic advocates for "a nation where the needs and ideas of the many aren't drowned out by the influence of the wealthy few."

When:   April 3, 2012

Registration for lunch - 11:45 am
Lunch promptly at noon
Program - 12:30 pm
General Meeting - 1:30 pm

Where: Hilton Hotel GET DIRECTIONS

Cost:  LWVCC Members: $20.00; Non-members: $25.00

Reservations: for lunch:  Click here  or call (239) 263-4656

Menu selections: SALMON or BROCCOLI QUICHE
Please make your check payable to:LWVCC Education Fund

April 30
Annual Meeting

Ballot boxAnnual Meeting Packet will be emailed in mid-April. Please copy and bring it with you to the meeting.   Decisions to be made include bylaw changes, approval of budgets for 2012-13, and election of officers. The president's annual report will be given at the meeting.

When:   April 30, 2012 at 10:00 AM
Where: Hilton Hotel GET DIRECTIONS

 April 30 General Meeting
 Report on Azerbaijan

Map ofAzerbaijain
Report on Azerbaijan
by Donna Suddeth.  Donna traveled to Azerbaijan as a delegate of the Naples Council on World Affairs.    She will share what she learned about the country, culture, and people, and insights on how  politics in the United States can affect other nations.

When:   April 30, 2012
Registration for lunch - 11:45 am
Lunch promptly at noon
Program - 12:30 pm
General Meeting - 1:30 pm
Where: Hilton Hotel  GET DIRECTIONS
Cost:  LWVCC Members: $20.00; Non-members: $25.00
Reservations: for lunch:  Click here  or call (239) 263-4656
Menu selections:  Niçoise Salad: Romaine and Iceberg Lettuce, Haricot-Verts, Black Olives, Hardboiled Eggs, Diced Tomatoes, Roasted Potatoes, Served with Balsamic Vinaigrette and choice of White Albacore Tuna or Chicken Breast
or Ravioli Florentine 5ea, herb beurre blanc, fresh tomatoes and basil

Please make your check payable to:LWVCC Education Fund
PresidentPresident's Message
Lydia Galton
Lydia Galton headshot
I apologize for making April such a busy month for you, but it was necessary to return to the Hilton for our meeting venue.  Please do make note of that change in your calendars for the April 3 meeting.  And, since the Hilton was already booked for May 1, it was  necessary to change our meeting day for the Annual Meeting and General Meeting to April 30!  Hopefully you have not been too inconvenienced.

Although our general meetings will cease after April 30, our activity level will be at the high octane level.  The legislature has proposed eight constitutional amendments, some of which are extremely complex.  Click here to read them. Some may be rejected by the Florida Supreme Court. LWVFL's board is preparing the League's positions on these amendments for distribution this summer. 

There will be an August primary as well as the November election and we are, as always, in need of poll workers.  Please contact Joyce Fletcher if you are willing to serve.

Plus, of course, we will host forums on candidates and issues.  WE WILL NEED YOUR HELP so, if you are in town this summer, heed requests for your assistance.

Serving as president of the League over the last two years has been an honor.  I am  grateful to each of you, especially an extraordinary board and dedicated committee chairs, for helping to keep the League  a respected and sought-after institution in our community.  By illuminating issues and enlightening voters we make our democracy strong and vital.  Although many issues that we care deeply about, such as women's health, are under relentless assault, I remind you of what Margaret Mead said:   "never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed it's the only thing that ever has." 

Nominating Committee Report
Rose DiBiasi, Chair
    Beth Povlow, Kathy Ryan, Joyce Fletcher, Paul Kardon

President-Vi Steffan 2013
First Vice President-Joyce Fletcher 2013
Second Vice President-Mollie Ottina 2014
Secretary-Nancy Wolfe 2013 (fulfills Donna Suddeth's term)
Treasurer-Carol Golightly 2014

Becky Newell        2012-2014
Tom McCann         2012-2014
Nina Ribinski        2012-2014
Lydia Galton (appointed as per the Bylaws)

Nominating Committee
Lydia Galton, Chair
Bernice Schmelz
Denise Rochford

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JusticeJustice Committee
Bernice Schmelz, Chair 

Bernice Schmelz

The Justice for Girls Initiative in Florida was designed to "spearhead systemic reform in the care and treatment of girls in Florida's juvenile justice system."  The findings of the resulting report, "Justice for Girls Blueprint for Action," raised concern among justice committee members, and we were anxious to determine whether the same issues existed locally.  Consequently, a subcommittee under the leadership of Linda Hyde has spent the last two seasons taking a comprehensive look at how the juvenile justice system works in Collier County.  Committee members Linda Hyde, Florence Chandler, Bernice Schmelz, Chris Straton and Nancy Wolfe will be providing an overview of the resulting report "Collier County Girls in Conflict with the Law" including reporting findings, which identify some concerns not addressed in the Blueprint report.  Following the report and discussion, the Justice Committee will be asked to determine further direction.


Join us on April 16, 2012, at 9:30 am in the Community Room of the North Collier Government Center on Orange Blossom Drive.  We invite everyone interested in the topic to attend, regardless of whether you have been a regular member of the Justice Committee.  It will be a great opportunity to put together the many presentations the committee has heard from law enforcement and juvenile justice staff over the years. Please RSVP by Thursday, April 12 to insure adequate materials are available.

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GovernmentCommitteeGovernment Committee 

Joyce Fletcher, Chair



There are no scheduled activities in April for the Government Committee. But there is still much to watch and ways to be involved. Redistricting is still in the news!  The Legislature was called back to redraw the state Senate lines by order of the Florida Supreme Court. They have until March 29 to send it back to the court for approval. There are still likely to be challenges to the Congressional House maps.  


Last year's Election Bill 1355 is still awaiting Department of Justice approval; parts of it in remain in federal courts as of this date.   


There will be opportunities during the summer to speak to groups on the Amendments that will be on the ballot in November.  If you are interested in participating as a speaker or scheduler, please let me know. 


Please continue to monitor our local Board of County Commissioners meetings on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays and the Naples City Council on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays.



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Voter Service
Joyce Fletcher, Chair

In this busy election year we are already moving along. The August 14th primary will be here before you know it. If you will be away from Naples in August, request a mail-in ballot through the Supervisor of Elections office before you depart--click here. Those ballots will be mailed out the second week of July! As of mid-March, there are 3 contested commissioner races, and 3 contested constitutional officer races. We will also be voting in 2 school board races, for representatives to the Florida House, and for our Florida state senator. There is also a large field vying for the House of Representatives seat currently held by Connie Mack and a statewide race for U.S. Senate.


The League and AAUW are working together to create questions for published interviews with candidates for the contested local races.   


There will be many constitutional amendments on the November ballot also and one local referendum. 


The League Board voted to collaborate with other organizations for issue forums in the fall and we are beginning discussions to make these plans.


Consider ways you can get involved with candidate debates, becoming a poll worker, and a forum volunteer. We will need your help.

SocialPolicyCommitteeSocial Policy Committee

Ann Campbell, Chair  


Ann Campbell 2009


Our next meeting will be a luncheon on Wednesday, April 11, 11:30 am to 12:30 pm at the Wilderness Country Club.  We will meet with Michael Dias, MEd, LSW, who is Office/Case Manager at Island Coast AIDS Network (iCAN). Mr. Dias is involved in community outreach to raise awareness that HIV/AIDS is still with us in Florida and Collier County and that a new demographic is appearing in the public health statistics.  We want to learn more about it and help by telling our friends and neighbors.  The cost of lunch is $14 inclusive.

All League members are invited, and guests are always welcome. Contact Ann Campbell at acamp1082@aol.com or 263-1755 to reserve a place. 


Last month: We had a conversation with Doreen Cassarino, MSN, Advanced Nurse Practitioner (ARNP), during a breakfast meeting at Patric's (a lucky find and a delicious meal!) Doreen brought us up-to-date on the efforts of Florida ARNPs to convince the Legislature to pass laws enabling them to practice to the full extent of their education, training, and clinical experience. There isn't space here to tell the whole story but suffice it to say that they met resistance at every turn. Why is the League concerned with this matter? Because Nurse Practitioners have an integral role in increasing access to affordable health care and holding down costs and, very importantly, they help to fill the severe shortages in primary care providers, especially in rural communities. We should tell our friends, our physicians, and our legislators to do something about the outdated regulations that restrict the scope of ARNP and physician assistants practice.  Maybe the situation will improve next year if we all try.  See www.floridanurse.org for more information.


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ClimateChangeCommitteeClimate Change Committee
Linda Denning, Chair  

Linda Denning HeadshotLeague members and friends are invited to a Solar Tutorial!  


Here's a chance to get your questions answered about how solar energy - how it works, how it is installed, current costs and payback time, and what government policies can support growth of the solar industry in Florida. Neville Williams, author and businessman with twenty-five years in the solar industry, will be speaking with us at the April 5 meeting of the LWV Climate Change Committee.   We'll be meeting at the community room of the N. Collier Government Center on Orange Blossom Rd., from 9:45 until 11:15am.
Please let committee chair, Linda Denning, know if you plan to attend. Lindadenning01@comcast.net

Spotlight on...Jeannette Boucher
by Denise Rochford

Jeanette Boucher

Jeannette Boucher's allegiance to the League of Women Voters is legendary.  She has been a member for over 30 years. She has held many offices in the League, including President from 1983 to 1985.  Currently, she is an active member of the Social Policy Committee.


Jeanette has always loved music -- a music major in college, music continues to be an integral part of her life. She is President of the Naples Music Club. The club's principal focus is its scholarship program which began in 1970 and has grown from one small grant awarded for summer study to a Collier County music student to 45 awards given last year, totaling $32,000, to area musicians in grades 6 through 12. More than $450,000 in grants have been awarded to date.  


The Music Club's Annual Scholarship Competition will be held on April 13 and 14 at Golden Gate High School. The Scholarship Winners' Recital will be held Saturday, April 28, at 2 pm, at the First Methodist Church, 388 First Avenue South, (239) 262-1033. The public is invited. 


When asked about the most interesting thing she has ever done, Jeannette didn't hesitate to say it was attending the LWV National Convention in Detroit, with Lee Iacocca as speaker. "It was run like a major political convention," she noted. " " 'Up all night' meetings on pros and cons of an issue - and the opportunity to lobby hard for individual points of view."


"My 'take away' from that convention was the lesson that even if you are president of an organization -- it doesn't mean you will get your own way. Compromise and negotiation are all important."

MembershipCommitteeMembership Committee
Becky Newell, Chair 



Becky Newell

This month we would like to welcome new members Thomas Laeser and Patricia Frerick to our League. 


Thank you to those members who have brought guests Men Can Join, Tooto general meetings over the past few months. Several of those who have recently attended meetings have become members, and a few of those new members have taken on active roles with the League. Bringing friends and colleagues to general meetings, committee meetings, and other League activities is a great way to help increase our membership.  


I encourage every member of our League to invite others to attend our upcoming meetings and to join the League. To request more information, email me at membership@lwvcolliercounty.org or call me at (239) 290-2260.


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BookBook Club
Charlotte Nycklemoe, Chair

C. Nycklemoe

We will soon be celebrating the 100th anniversary of both the League of Women Voters and women's right to vote. For that reason, we have selected Founding Sisters and the Nineteenth Amendment by Eleanor Clift as our final book of the year. Please use this opportunity to reflect on your own voting history, and consider the following questions as you read:
  1. 1.  When did you first vote?  What was special about it?  Why did you vote?When did you first become aware of suffragists?  Did you know any women who marched before the 19th amendment?
  2.  Discuss how the women abolitionists in their fight to end slavery became suffragists with women's civil rights as their goal.  (see Chapter 1).  How did the temperance movement fit into the picture?
  3. Susan B. Anthony,Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucy Stone, Amelia Bloomer, Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Harriet Beecher Stowe, were early promoters of a woman's right to vote. What brought about the breaches in their relationships?  Were they all working towards the same goals?
  4. Alice Paul and Carrie Chapman Catt organized others to reach out to women. Discuss the hardships these women endured as they traveled to the western states. Why did they lead divided movements?
  5. Discuss the role of the wives of presidents. Could they have played even more prominent roles?
  6. What issue would inspire you to march and fight as these suffragists did?
The Book Club meeting will be at Calistoga on Airport Pulling on Tuesday, April10 
at 2 pm. Guests (members and non-members) are encouraged to join us!

If you are interested in joining the Book Club, call me (239) 455-2261 or email me in advance at drchargar@yahoo.com.


nationalNews from the National League
Ann Campbell

In recent weeks the National League:   

Put its grassroots support behind the DISCLOSE 2012 (H.R. 4010) bill introduced by Rep. Chris Van Hollen in February. This legislation will provide essential new disclosure requirements to cover the hundreds of millions of dollars in secret contributions being injected into federal elections by non-profit groups and other entities. The legislation also ensures that there will be timely disclosure by Super PACs.  

* Urged full funding of Title X Federal Family Planning Program to the $327 million requested in President Obama's FY 2013 budget, stating that the League believes that Title X services are critical for the health of women and their families throughout the country. The League is concerned that the Congressional debate over funding Title X has become an ideological one, ignoring the real need for these services. 

* Joined a Supreme Court amicus brief on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) along with a broad coalition of healthcare, education and child welfare organizations.  The amicus brief argues that the challenge to the ACA's expansion of Medicaid eligibility jeopardizes a broad range of federal-state programs and antidiscrimination protections that hinge on the U.S. Constitution's "Spending Clause".

* Accepted an invitation to work with the U.S. Government as its 2012 Broader Middle East and North Africa (BMENA) Initiative NGO partner. "The League is proud to serve as the civil society partner alongside the U.S. and Tunisian governments and the NGO partner in Tunisia to contribute our experience to the themes and agendas that will be discussed in these important meetings," said Elisabeth MacNamara, LWVUS President.


For more information on these and other National League projects, click here.

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NewsFromStateNews from the State League
by Lydia Galton

You are invited to attend LWVF's 2012 Council of Leaders in Tampa. In addition to discussing important League business, attendees will participate in valuable workshops while socializing with other local League leaders from throughout the state.    
When:  Friday May 11 at 5:00 pm
Saturday May 12 at 10:00 pm
Where:  Howard Johnson Plaza Tampa Downtown Hotel
111 W. Fortune Street
Tampa, FL 33602
Phone: (813) 223-1351
Note: The LWVF group rate is $95/night, which includes breakfast and parking.  Click here to register.

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About Us    
The League of Women Voters of Collier County, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government and influences public policy through education and advocacy.  Our goal is to empower citizens to shape better communities worldwide.

Visit our website at www.lwvcolliercounty.org for our current list of officers, directors and off-board members, our Program, Diversity Policy, Nonpartisan Policy, By-laws, Minutes, and more.