February 22 2018 Greater Brunswick Area Minutes

2-22-18 Minutes Greater Brunwick Area Maine AllCare

**Formerly MidCoast Chapter

5:30 – 7 PM, Unitarian Universalist Church, Brunswick, Maine


Many chapter members who are willing to work / volunteer cannot attend meetings (or don’t like meetings- we understand!).  Consult “GET ACTIVE” at the top of meeting minutes, from now on.  Contacts are named, details in minutes (Bill can give you email addresses).


How YOU can help Maine AllCare cover all Mainers

  • Attend March 2 LD1274 Study Grp meeting; Augusta-Bill
  • Table at a Dem Caucus on March 4-Bill
  • Sign up endorsers-biz or organization -Bill
  • Suggest a venue for a presentation/event-Bill
  • Table at Farmer’s Mkt- or other community event-Bill
  • Agree to host House Party-Marla
  • Suggest a person to serve on MAC Board-Bill

Present 2/22: Bill Clark, Jean Sawyer, Bill Eaton, Gail Eaton, Debbie Brisbois, Marla Davis, Wendy Flaschner, Susan Kamin, Poppy Arford, Don Leaver, Cindy DeChennes, Brandy Staples

  • Introductions, agenda review
  • Review minutes, Jan 25- approved
  • Chapter Name – Gail Eaton had suggested “Greater Brunswick Area” (GBA) and those present voted to approve the new name.
  • Board: Don L provided an update from Policy Committee (Charlie Priest from GBA Chapter is also on the Committee) – they have some “quick study” data together on Maine coverage and costs and are beginning possible language for a 2020 ballot initiative, and meet again next week.  They will seek more complete data from an economic study which the Board plans to commission.
    • Recent news: WASHINGTON State is moving firmly and its advocacy group published a Gerald Friedman (U Mass) economic study, and full ballot initiative language. Details: clik here
  • Managing Conversations. We began, just barely, talking about how to respond to comments such as: “I like my insurance,” “Gov’t cannot do anything right,” “How will we pay for it,” and more, but postponed real discussion to next time.  Bill will prepare some materials.
  • Chapter work:
    • March 2 Legislative Study Group, Augusta/ Cross Bldg. Several people plan to attend; Bill has his testimony almost completed.
    • March 4 Dem Caucuses! We will be tabling at Topsham (details: Wendy), Woolwich (details: Marla), Phippsburg (details: Brandy) and Brunswick (details: Bill, Debbie will help.) might anyone do Harpswell, Arrowsic or Richmond, Dresden, etc?? It does not require much time, and is very easy to set up- Bill will provide yellow cards and handouts by next weekend. Gail will email link to Sagadahoc caucuses; other counties are on a link at Maine Dems website.
    • Goals:
      • Endorsers: (Goal set in Jan: 30 biz, 15 orgs.) Progress is being made, Marla turned in 3 new biz endorsers tonight.
    • Poppy will contact the Brunswick Downtown Assoc. re a list of businesses.
      • We noted that Rotaries are independent and do not need permission from “Rotary Central”.
    • We urge chapter members to take on a few biz/orgs in their local area—many, many small business owners are eager to get the albatross off their back and would love it if their employees had insurance.
      • Events/presentations; Tonight we set goal of 10 more in 2018. (see reports on our recent events below; Grace Church, Bath, and HCHR coalition- gubernatorial Forum). We have a date for AARP, working with Bowdoin students, and Susan will explore whether the Nurse Midwife Assoc. would welcome a presentation at meeting in Rockland (Samoset)- if so, perhaps we could team up with Rockland Chapter.
        • Bill is willing to prepare Power Point Presentations that anyone could use, and to provide sample materials as well.
        • Our Chapter (Bill) will explore whether we could do some joint events with the Portland Chapter- in Freeport, for example.
      • Sign up individuals: Tonight we set goal of 1000 new for our Chapter in 2018.
    • Caucuses- organizers above;
    • Farmers’ Mkts: we note that many volunteers are in the data base and could be recruited- a key issue is “would one person be willing to be point person for a given location? We need as much visibility as possible, perhaps not at every session of a market.
    • Wendy and Poppy will check into doing the winter mkt in Brunswick.
    • Summer markets are easier, in that no permission or $$ is needed if one sets up outside the perimeter of the market itself (like on sidewalk in Bath or in Mall in Brunswick)
    • For “big” events, like CG Fair, Y Clam Festival, etc, MAC central “should” take charge and probably use hired staff to coordinate.
    • Don noted that it could be GREAT to snare someone who could attract a big crowd. Say, Bernie Sanders! And Don will talk with his contacts- again MAC Central would likely be involved, and we’d need to hire a big venue, etc.
      • House Parties: set goal of 10 for 2018.
    • We discussed some of the “how to’s” (actually pretty simple) making lists of invitees, getting food, having a presentation) Our paid staff has been and will be a great help to hosts—our key role is to select homes and dates.  Marla will coordinate. Bill, Poppy, Debbie and Susan each agreed to host, sometime this year.
      • Fund raising. We have not previously discussed a Chapter goal. We noted that MAC altogether raised over $80,000 last year and aims to do more this year, so we will all be “recruited”.
    • From MAC HQ:
      • Need Bd Member suggestions- need persons with expertise (healthcare, finance, legal, etc) who are committed to Universal HC. Trish Riley was suggested, but she may not be solidly in our SP corner. Dora Mills was suggested, and Bill will pass on to Board.
    • Events/Presentations
      • Feb 21, Bath Grace Episcopal Church event: ~35 people, 12 from Grace Church, mostly older, 3 good videos and active panel (Dr. Matt Hanna, Sen. Eloise Vitelli and Bd Member Delene Perley.
      • Feb 1, Gubernatorial candidate Forum– MAC participated as member of HCHR coalition. Bill, Debbie Brisbois and several Board members attended. 10 candidates were interviewed, with the MSNA and SMWC having done the logistical work (we are an effective coalition!). One candidate, Sean Faircloth (former mayor of Bangor) was outspokenly in favor, as was Betsy Sweet; others were “sort of” in favor (Janet Mills, Mark Eves, Mark Dion), and the rest less clear.


Next mtg: March 29, Thursday 530, UUCB