CALENDAR
Wednesday, Dec. 6
Massachusetts Conference for Women, Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.

Thursday, Dec. 7
Massachusetts Conference for Women, Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 7:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. 

Friday, Dec. 15
LWVMA/LESF Board Meeting & Holiday Lunch, LWVMA Office, Boston, from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m.

Wednesday, Jan. 31
Deadline to update LWVUS Roster

HAPPENING NOW
You Can Boost Automatic Voter Registration

Automatic Voter Registration (AVR) and LWVMA got terrific press coverage visibility from our media event with our AVR coalition partners, Sen. Cindy Creem, and Rep. Peter Kocot at the State House last week. Here's just some of the coverage: Associated Press, CBS Boston, Worcester Telegram, Berkshire Eagle, and a Boston Globe editorial.

If your League has not already sent a letter backing AVR to your local newspaper, now is the time, while legislators are in their home districts for their holiday recess. Please take five minutes and send a letter from your League. You can find a template for the letter  here . Sign up  here  to let us know that you are submitting a letter to your local newspaper, so we can track our statewide outreach and impact. There's a fact sheet on automatic voter registration  here. 

Let's get this League priority passed when the legislature comes back in January!
Help Make Our Phonathon a Success!
 
 
Many thanks to the donors to our Fall Appeal for your generous support! Our annual Phonathon fundraiser is getting under way to reach members who have not yet contributed. Thank you in advance for saying "Yes!" when you receive a call from a fellow League member. Our success depends on you!
 
Several local Leagues have already volunteered to make calls. Will your League help? This is a win-win opportunity for local Leagues: your League will earn 10% of the contributions solicited by your team. If your League would like to participate or for more information, please contact Brynne Gorman.
Nine Leagues Receive Scharfman Grants

Nine local Leagues around the state received Daniel Scharfman Citizen Education grants in October for voter service and education projects.

The next deadline for grant applications is Jan. 16. Local Leagues can apply for grants up to $250 for a project; three or more Leagues collaborating on a project can apply for up to $500. The application and requirements are here.

Leagues receiving grants in October are listed below and a detailed description of their projects is here.
  • Cape Ann: Candidate event for Gloucester city election involving high school students
  • Framingham: Candidate showcases for first election of mayor and city council
  • Franklin County: Civics trivia night
  • Greater Haverhill: Naturalization ceremony supplies
  • Greater Lowell: Three-part education project on Dracut town meeting
  • Hamilton-Wenham: Public forum on media literacy
  • Melrose: Town election candidate forum
  • Needham: Project with Green Needham to raise awareness of environmental issues
  • Wellesley: Public forum on gerrymandering
Field Service Preparing for Winter Meetings

Field Service Reps,
Bonnie Carter (left) and
Sharyn Roberts (right)
The Field Service program will hold winter (January-February) meetings in all regions. New League units have been placed into existing regions, and all regions have a Field Service Representative and board liaison(s).

For the latest information on the Field Service program and the list of regions, visit the Field Service page under Member Services at lwvma.org. Your Field Service Representative will contact leaders from each local League and unit about scheduling and attending the winter meetings. Every League is encouraged to attend. If you have questions, please email Director Karen Price.
Volunteer at Mass. Conference for Women

LWVMA will have a voter registration table at the Massachusetts Conference for Women Dec. 6 and 7 at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

We need volunteers on Wednesday, Dec. 6, from 5 to 8 p.m. and on Thursday, Dec. 7, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. This is a great opportunity to network with other women and League members. Please email Kris Eastman or Judy Zaunbrecher if you can volunteer.
ADVOCACY
Who Will Be Your League's Legislative Envoy?
    
LWVMA is creating a corps of Legislative Envoys to link local Leagues with our state legislative efforts. The program begins in January.

We are looking for one or two interested members in each local League to become envoys. Is there someone in your League who would like to take a more active role with the League's activity at the State House?

Learn more about the program here . If you know someone who is interested or has further questions, ask them to contact Colleen Kirby, the program's administrator.
Falmouth Forum on Extreme Climate Events Draws Crowd

Ellen Douglas, Stephanie Madsen, and Max Holmes answer questions from the audience.
   
LWVMA and LWV Falmouth welcomed almost 100 attendees to the Nov. 4 forum, "Extreme Events and Climate Change Boston Area and Cape Cod: What We Know and What We Can Do." Cape Cod and South Shore residents heard Dr. Ellen Douglas' frank discussion of sea level rise and climate change, a topic of particular interest to coastal communities. Two Cape-based speakers, Stephanie Madsen and Max Holmes, joined Dr. Douglas in a panel discussion to provide the local perspective.

The slide presentation is available here. The forum was videotaped and the program will be available soon; check back at the Climate and Energy Solutions Series page.

This event was the last of the five forums in the successful 2017 LWVMA Climate and Energy Solutions Series. About 585 people attended the five events.

The LWVMA Environmental Action and Advocacy Steering Committee coordinated the series in conjunction with local Leagues in Worcester, Boston, Winchester, Lexington and Falmouth. The work of the Steering Committee is supported through a Jumpstart Grant from the New England Grassroots Environment Fund. For a list of partnering organizations click here.
ELECTIONS & VOTING
Moderator Training Coming Soon
  
LWVMA is developing a moderator training module and updating its moderator database.  Our intent is to expand the list of trained moderators and to have a broader distribution of moderators throughout the state.
 
We will be sending a questionnaire to local Leagues in early December to assess the needs you have for LWV-moderated events and to identify people who can help roll out the training module or want to be trained as moderators. Your quick response to the questionnaire will be greatly appreciated.   
LWVUS Offers Grants for Youth Voter Registration
  
LWV Sudbury HS Voter Registration
As part of its 2018 Youth Voter Registration project, the national League of Women Voters Education Fund (LWVEF) will award pass-through grants to state and local Leagues to undertake voter registration activities in high schools, community colleges and alternative/vocational schools in underrepresented communities. Grant applications are due by midnight Dec. 13, and grant decisions will be announced before the holidays. The application and additional information can be found here
 
THE TO-DO LIST
Information on Updating the LWVUS Database
  
Roster Updates: Roster updates from all Leagues to LWVUS are due Jan. 31, 2018.

To access your League's database, visit the login page. LWVUS staff can provide assistance and walk you through the updating process if necessary. You can email rostersupport@lwv.org with questions. You can also consult the online manual.

Your League roster "freezes" on Jan. 31 each year. The number of members as of that date determines what your League will be billed for per-member payments starting in July 2018 by your state League and LWVUS, and the number of delegates your League can send to the 2018 national Convention.

Updating Officer List:
LWVUS encourages you to keep the active officers list up to date. LWVUS uses those lists to communicate with League leaders on different projects, programs, and notifications. Roster managers can watch this quick video clip to see how to update and add new officers to their active list, and remove those no longer active. You can also follow the step-by-step instructions on page 22 and 23 of the LWVUS Database User Guide.

Database User Guide: Starting Nov. 13, roster managers will find the LWVUS Database user guide as a PDF attachment to their League record under the "Attachments" list. Users can view the document with their web browser or download it.
 
Email RosterSupport@lwv.org with questions on any of these items.
Correction
  
The October League Leaders Update identified the position on ranked choice voting as a national position. It is actually a Massachusetts League position, adopted in 2005.
 
Here is the position from Where We Stand, p. 15, where ranked choice voting is referred to as instant runoff voting: "Voting systems should be easy to use, administer and understand, encourage high voter turnout, encourage real discussion on issues, promote minority representation, and encourage candidates to run. When electing someone to a single executive office at the state level, such as governor or attorney general, including primary and general elections, the voting system should require the winner to obtain a majority of the votes. The League supports instant runoff voting. Cost and complexity make two-round runoff not acceptable."
The League Leader Update is distributed to local League board members and LWVMA leaders. Anyone can request the Update by clicking here. Please review this Update for articles of interest to your League and include them in your local Bulletin.

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