November 2017 Meeting Minutes

November 7, 2017   In attendance: approx 53
Meeting opened @ 7:30 p.m.
Glory Days Restaurant, Rt. 40, Ellicott City

A President Report:  Sue Geckle welcomed all and introduced all the elected officials.

Proposal to raise dues was introduced, again. Motions were made and the dues increase was confirmed for:
$50 Super Democrats
$40 Family
$25 Supporter
$15 Senior Student

Changing by-laws:
Bryan Coster read the proposal of the change regarding endorsements. It reads:
Under Article VI voting
Sec 3, take out the word NEW, and change 30 to 35 days, and at the end of "paid their  dues" add And have attended at least one meeting in the same calendar year as a motion called for endorsements.
We will vote on amendment in January. The meeting has been moved to the second Tues. of January, the 9th.

Holiday party with all the clubs is December 16th, 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. at Ridgely Run Community Center.

October minutes are on the website and were approved.

Carole Fisher asked Sue to read the following resolution about affordable and accessible prescription drugs from Maryland Citizens’ Health Initiative:
WHEREAS, to protect our lives and our well - being, every family in Maryland requires access to affordable prescription drugs;
WHEREAS, skyrocketing costs are making some medicines virtually inaccessible to our families and neighbors;
WHEREAS, overall drug prices increased almost 9% in 2016 while general inflation increased just over 2% in the same period, and since 2013 drug prices have risen an average of 10% annually but inflation has only increased 1.2% on average since 2013;
WHEREAS, prescription drug spending accounted for over 22% of each health insurance premium dollar in 2014, and nearly a quarter of people in their deductible period never picked up their prescriptions from the pharmacy, presumably because of the cost;
WHEREAS, there are pharmacy benefit managers who reportedly ban pharmacists from discussing lower-priced drug choices with their patients;
WHEREAS, Maryland should continue to lead the Nation in addressing the affordability of prescription drugs, building on the State’s landmark 2017 legislation banning price gouging by manufacturers of generic and off-patent drugs.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the undersigned organization supports:
Allowing pharmacists to provide information to consumers about lower cost drug options
Requiring prescription drug corporations to provide notice of new, Expensive drugs, or
large price increases of older drugs, as well as public justification for those pricing decisions; Making expensive drugs more affordable by creating a new Prescription Drug Cost Review Commission to establish payment rates for expensive drugs that create significant affordability problems for Marylanders, building upon Maryland’s successful tradition of health care cost scrutiny.

The club motioned to add its name to the list of supporters.

B. Treasurer's report:  Balance is $2,242.23; $90 in dues collected in November.

C. Program:  Democratic Gubernatorial candidates. County Council chair Jon Weinstein introduced. Each candidate was given five minutes to present.

  1. Senator Richard Madaleno – Elected in 2002. Fights to make college more affordable. He and his husband have two children, live in Montgomery County. He says we need to work state Democrats and get them out. We need to win back 9B, the county executive and governor’s seat, etc. We need more Democrats to pass universal healthcare.
  2. Dr. Maya Rockeymoore Cummings – 4th generation slave and a military brat, wife of Congressman Elijah Cummings - says the current governor is doing nothing to change the landscape of the state. We also need to peruse a progressive and inclusive growth strategy statewide.
  3. Jim Shea – a principal at Venable law firm. He says we need to invest in the future. Washington is all about “I want it now, it’s for me and I’m not paying taxes.” Our party doesn’t do that. We need a statewide transit system. We need a healthcare system. We need a robust economy.
  4. Krish Vignarajah - attorney, graduated from Yale Law School. Served in the Obama White House, as well as for Secretaries of State Carey and Clinton. She is married and a mother of an infant. She says Governor Hogan has to go but we have an uphill battle. We owe our party to be for something, someone, not just against. For universal pre-K and high-speed broadband, protecting the Chesapeake Bay.

Questions were taken from the membership via index cards. Bryan and Lisa Coster collected them to present to the candidates (via Jon Weinstein) to prevent duplicative questions.

Each candidate ended the panel presentation with a one-minute summary.

(In the background – we watched the election results from New Jersey and Virginia. Dem. Phil Murphy projected to win NJ. Dem. Ralph Northam wins VA.)

The meeting adjourned at 9:00

Respectfully submitted by Lisa B. Coster, secretary