Sunday, April 3, 2016

April is the month for political focus in Maryland! Try to smile and be part of the process. We have FREEDOM.

Hi folks,

April is the time to focus on politics in Maryland!* April 5th is the last date to adjust party affiliation!
MORE STATEWIDE Election INFO BELOW…AND THIS WILL BE THE MAIN TOPIC OF OUR APRIL MEETING. Tuesday April 19th, our regular monthly chapter meeting (at UUCR, see the website) will focus on politics! (YES!....PFLAG is a non-partisan non-profit organization, we are respectful and careful about the related guidelines!)

At this meeting we will have FUN discussing the topics of the day using a “random” tool…a card game that brings up many “topics of the day.” I will leave the rest to your imagination. The INTENT is to provoke thought and conversation…as well as try to learn from one another about the complexities of the ballot issues and position of individuals running for various positions in various parties….A free for all conversation to be sure! (We intend to set a tone of dark/silly humor and info sharing/respectfulness side by side.)  Should be interesting!

We will also hold our own annual local chapter officer elections…as required by our chapter bylaws.

The chapter officer ballots will be pre-printed, anonymous voting, in person only and will include a write in space.  These positions are real and require work and commitment.  The results will be tabulated, checked independently and announced that evening.  More details are available about the individuals proposed for the offices…as are thanks for those who have served our chapter with their generosity.  (Kendall Ruffatto, our Chapter President since our inception in 2011 is stepping down. We appreciate your commitment and ongoing support in new ways Kendall!)
The PFLAG Chestertown Chapter proposed 2016 Officer ballot overview is:
President:  Linda Dutton (currently serving as Chapter Secretary since 2011.)
Treasurer: Jonathan Chace (has served in this same role since 2011.)
Secretary: Barbi Bedell (Long term member and Chapter leader, bio available)
These roles are our three required Chapter Officer positions.  We also welcome other leaders to less formal (but vital!) roles that are being swapped out…and those details will also be announced at our meeting.)….please check out our website for several other opportunities for to involve yourself in our work.  I don’t want to post them all as it is overwhelming…but note where they are from and involve yourself!  PFLAG is a resource for support, education and advocacy….a link among many, but from your closest local connections….help us continue to be simply that!
The main program of the meeting on April 19th will focus on the Maryland State wide process!
What are the dates and details about elections in Maryland this year?
May I change parties? Yes. To change your party affiliation you can use Maryland's Online Voter Registration System (OLVR) or submit a new voter registration application or a signed written request to your local board of elections. The deadline to change your party affiliation is April 5, 2016 for the Presidential Primary Election and October 16, 2016 for the Presidential General Election. If you request a change in party affiliation after these dates, your request will be held at your local board of elections and processed when registration reopens after the elections.