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October 2018
Vol. 69 No. 5

In this issue:

Johnson County commissioners forums

Getting Johnson County residents to the polls

Spotlight on member Marty Birch


Get Out The Vote Presentation October 6Get Out the Vote: What Works

Saturday, October 6

9-10:30 a.m.

Atonement Lutheran Church

9948 Metcalf Ave., Overland Park

Motivating people to vote involves proven strategies as well as new approaches. Learn how we can get more Johnson County residents to the polls for each and every election.

Presenters: Patrick Miller, Ph.D., assistant professor of political science, University of Kansas, and Brandi Fisher and Lindsay Behgam from Mainstream Coalition.

Join us at 8:30 a.m. for coffee and treats. The program will start at 9 a.m.

Add this to your calendar.

Records Smashed!

From the Rosedale Farmers Market in Wyandotte County to the Olathe YMCA, wherever crowds gather, you’ll find our Voter Services folks. Since March, this team of dedicated volunteers has registered 1,172 people at schools, colleges, churches, clubs and senior living communities. Leaguers have helped over 100 people apply for an advance ballot and provided information about voting to hundreds more.

League volunteers registering people to vote.

Gloria Hiller was one of the many League volunteers registering voters on National Voter Registration Day. We were among the more than 400 Leagues hosting events in 40 states

This year, technology has simplified our voter registration efforts. The website SignUpGenius.com allows our 80+ volunteers to sign up for shifts and even reminds them of their shift via email the day before.

Increasingly, voter registration itself is also done online with ksvotes.org and Vote411.org. Paper forms still outnumber online registrations 2 to 1, but online registration is growing. Online registration saves registrants’ time, and it doesn’t require us to deliver a paper document to the Election Office.

For National Voter Registration Day, co-chairs Becky White and Julie Lester broke their “personal best,” orchestrating five voter registration events that day and one the day before and one the day after. Since March, there have been 111 such events.

However, the race is nearly over. The last day for voter registration is October 16. “We have a lot of great volunteers,” Becky said, “but I think all of them will be glad to see October 17!”

Here’s a huge shout out to all of you Voter Services volunteers – you’re doing an outstanding job!

—Ellen Miller, President

ellen3147@gmail.com; 913-894-5232

Join us for the County Commissioner Candidate Forums

Saturday, October 13

10 a.m.–11:30 a.m.

Matt Ross Community Center, Overland Park

District 4 (Jason Osterhaus and Janeé Hanzlick); chair (Ed Eilert and Trinette Waldrup)

To help, contact Cathy Matlack

Sunday, October 14

2 p.m.–3:30 p.m.

Olathe Public Library

District 5 (Michael Ashcraft and LeEtta Felter); chair (Ed Eilert and Trinette Waldrup)

To help, contact Ellen Miller.

Saturday, October 20

3:30 – 5 p.m.

Matt Ross Community Center, Overland Park

District 1 (Ron Shaffer and Becky Fast); chair (Ed Eilert and Trinette Waldrup)

To help, contact Sarah Baum.

To find out which district you live in, go to the Johnson County website.

Johnson County Needs You!

Election Day is nearly here! Show your personal commitment to voter empowerment by helping at the polls on November 6. Johnson County needs 2,256 workers and currently has about 1,700. Don’t miss out on:

  • Working with other committed, caring volunteers.
  • Welcoming all voters.
  • Earning $110 for Election Day plus $25 for each training session.
  • Showing folks how to use the new voting machines.
  • Giving out “I Voted” stickers to voters and their kids.

For more information and to apply, please visit the Election Office website.

LWVK postcard to invite former First Ladies to speakLaura Bush and Michelle Obama in Kansas?

In 2019, LWV Kansas will celebrate the 100th birthday of LWV and the 19th Amendment with many events. The theme? “Past, Present, Future: Our Voices United.” On August 24, 2019, League of Women Voters of Kansas will sponsor a special event. They hope that Laura Bush and/or Michelle Obama will attend.

This is where you come in! At our meeting on Saturday, October 6, you can use League postcards to write a personal message to these former First Ladies. We’ll collect all the cards and then forward them to LWVK for special delivery to the invitees. The goal is to send more than 900 postcards from our nine Kansas leagues. Your message to these former First Ladies counts!

NOTE: To save you time writing a message, please bring your personal return address labels to stick on the front. We want the two former First Ladies to know we are real people, not fakes!

Webinar: Advancing the League’s Goal to Increase Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Through Action

Learn how to put DEI principles in action to increase the League’s social impact work in communities throughout the nation. All League members are invited to join this webinar on Tuesday, October 30, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. ET, which will be led by Diversity Dimensions Consulting, LLC, a Washington, D.C. based company that provides effective solutions to individuals and organizations seeking to harness the power of diversity and inclusion. Speakers will discuss the ways individual leaders are overcoming discomfort with communicating across dimensions of difference. Register here.

Purchase LWV yard signs, T-shirts and posters.


Voting in JoCo: What You Need to Know

On your November ballot. you will choose a candidate for governor, secretary of state, attorney general, treasurer, insurance commissioner and Kansas House representative. Voters will also select the third district congressional representative, and choose among the candidates for chair and district seats on the Board of County Commissioners. Several Johnson County (10th District Court) judges will be up for retention as well.

Learn about these candidates at vote411.org

Read the recently released Johnson County Bar Association member survey to help inform your decisions about the retention of the judges.

Important dates:

  • October 16: Last day to register to vote.
  • October 22-November 3: Advance voting in person.
  • November 5: Advance voting 8 a.m.- noon only at the Election Office.
  • November 6: Election Day Polls open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Useful links:

One Person, No Vote?

Join American Public Square and KCUR for “One Person, No Vote? A Conversation With Carol Anderson.” Anderson, author of National Book Critics Circle Award winner White Rage, will discuss voter suppression and her new book, One Person, No Vote.

Thursday, October 11

6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Park University

Register now

Welcome, New Members

Seventeen people joined LWVJoCo during the past month: Louise Lloyd, Marge Skikne, Diana Carney, Lynda Raner, Don Haring, Carole DeRoo, Amy Rosenfeld, Anne Faubel, Glenda Harber, Danielle Keller, Pat Palmer-Sanditz, Jonne Rose, Deborah Schultz, Kerri Wade, Verna Wright, Karen Steffen and Audrey Odermann.

And as always, we remind members to renew their memberships, which expired June 30. Renew online—it’s fast and easy.

Member Spotlight

Marty Birch

Ever wonder who to thank for our wonderful Saturday morning presentations? As co-vice president, Marty Birch definitely deserves some of our appreciation. Read why he devotes so much time to the League.

Observer Corps

The naming of a new JCCC building and Leawood converting the original city hall and fire station into a historical site are among the many issues public officials discussed in meetings this month. Read summaries created by several League members who attend these public meetings regularly.

Board and Committee Updates

  • Members of the Naturalization Committee registered 57 of 90 new citizens at the Fort Scott Naturalization Ceremony on September 21.
  • The Speakers Bureau hosted two presentations in September, one to the Overland Park Rotary Club and one to the NAWBO KC (National Association of Women Business Owners).

    Candy Birch, speakers bureau chair, spoke to a welcoming and gracious crowd attending the Overland Park Rotary Club in September about the importance of voting in the midterms. If your group would like the League to present this topic or another topic related to voting rights and elections, please contact us at contactus@lwvjoco.org

  • The board approved a privacy policy for the website.
  • Area media outlets mentioned LWVJoCo nine times in September, thanks to efforts of the Communications Committee.
  • The Natural Resources Committee raised $288 in the native plant sale.
  • In response to ACLU’s lawsuit against Johnson County Election Commissioner Ronnie Metsker, Ellen Miller, president of the League of Women Voters of Johnson County, said: “It is essential that all Kansas local election offices publicize the criteria for not counting some ballots. Transparency in the entire voting process helps inspire needed public confidence. The League of Women Voters is committed to helping citizens exercise their constitutional right to vote. Your Voice is your Vote.”
  • The board needs volunteers to help with event planning, hospitality, communications and the Speakers Bureau. If you are interested, please email our membership team.

ACTION ALERT for KPC&L Customers in Kansas

KPC&L is seeking a rate increase for its Kansas customers. Find out more about the public hearing held by the Kansas Corporate Commission in August. The commission is accepting public comments on the proposed increase before October 17.

Find out more about what the state League is doing.

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