January 19 – In response to the continuing claim of the 2008 executive committee that they are still the duly constituted executive committee of the JACC board, Stacy L. Sorenson, Neighborhood Specialist for the Minneapolis Neighborhood Revitalization Program, wrote to Anne McCandless, secretary of the JACC board:
Prior to the January 12th elections I reviewed the JACC bylaws and kept abreast of the nominations process and plans for the elections. My role on January 12th was mainly to serve as teller / ballot counter as requested by the JACC Nominating Committee. Because the NRP invests a significant amount of public funds in Jordan, it is in our interest for the neighborhood association to have a board of directors that is both elected fairly and functions effectively.
I also attended for a second purpose: to answer any questions that might come up about the NRP and about JACC’s involvement in the NRP.
In my view, the elections were run exceptionally well and in accordance with the JACC bylaws. At one point early in the meeting, a member of the organization suggested that nominations from the floor be accepted.
The suggestion was respectfully received, but it was pointed out by an attendee and confirmed by a member of the Nominating Committee that the JACC bylaws call for candidates’ eligibility for the board to be verified and for members to mailed a list of all candidates prior to the elections. Accepting nominations from the floor would have violated JACC’s bylaws. There is no question in my mind that the Nominating Committee did its homework and was taking great care to operate in accordance with the organization’s bylaws.
After ballots were cast, I counted the ballots along with Bob Cooper and with Jay Clark. We were observed by two individuals, one being the chair of the Nominating Committee. Results of the vote were not close.
In a second letter to city council members Don Samuels and Barbara Johnson and JACC chair Michael Browne, also dated January 16, Sorenson affirmed that the new executive committee was also properly elected.
On January 14th, the new JACC Board was convened for the first time. After the new members were seated, a motion was made that a new election for officers be conducted to allow the full complement of board members to participate. The motion was adopted. Michael Browne was elected as Chair, John (“PJ”) Hubbard was elected as Vice Chair, Anne McCandless was elected as Secretary and Robert Hodson was elected as Treasurer.
I reviewed this history with the Assistant City Attorney responsible for citizen participation earlier today and requested his advice on the legality of the officer election process. He advised me that the new board (as elected on January 12th) had the responsibility to elect its officers. I also reviewed my observations and the legal advice that I had received with NRP Director Bob Miller.