Steering Committee Minutes, 5/22/2007


Steering Committee Minutes 5/22/07 I. Budget report -Overall, we are in good shape with net assets of over $400,000 -Just received a 2 year, $25,000/year grant from CS Fund -We have additional funding prospects -We are now billing OMB Watch by the hour for their work Discussion of budget: -Some SC members questioned why our income is high, expenditures low, and we’re still looking to increase our funds -Gary pointed out that in the future, we will not have the Knight money ($147,500) -We have $60,000 in reserve -The money we have is not for projects- it’s general support -Steering Committee will need to approve projects on which to spend money -SC will need to keep an eye on the budget -In the future, Patrice will add the ’07 budget of projected expenses to budget report II. Replacing Steering Committee members who leave -We need a policy for replacing SC members -Do we consider the seats for organizations? Individuals? Sectors of the community? Or some combination? – The overall consensus was that members represented sectors and organizations, in roughly that order -Tom said key organizations should be involved, but knowledgeable individuals might be important too – other SC members agreed -Concluded that we don’t need a set rule – nominating committee will weigh factors -Send suggestions of people to nominate to Patrice -Tom and Gary will reconstitute the nominating committee and call upon people to serve on it III. Policy on taking positions -Patrice circulated an updated policy on OTG taking positions. Policy was approved. -OTG will not take a formal position on an issue unless the issue has been identified in the strategic operational plan and/or previously, and where there is broad agreement for a particular position. IV. Proposed new project -We received a proposal for a new report on state transparency. The report would focus on three issues: -Contract awards by state government agencies. -Economic development subsidies given to companies by state and local governments. -State lobbying activities by corporations and other special interests. -The report would be branded or co-branded with our name -The report would include links to information to make it more useful -Do we fund projects like this? We need to create guidelines -Charles said that the content would be good for state groups -Others questioned whether these issues are really what OTG is interested in V. Updates -Primer: still waiting for completion of forward, preface, design -Progress in AZ on Kyl/FOIA- gathering support from conservative legislators in AZ -21st century RTK- all SC members have been invited; formal invitations will go out soon -Flash animation- Need help with promotion (to big lists, blogs); will go up on you tube soon -NFOIC conference- Charles reported there were 100 people; it was a success -Personal Democracy Forum – there was minimal discussion of the focus of the attendees at the event -Open House Project – Bill Allison had to leave the call. There was no discussion of this.

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