MIDDLESEX COUNTY FEDERATION OF DEMOCRATIC WOMEN
MEETING OF OCTOBER 24, 2022
I. D. Ludas opened the meeting and began the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance. D. Ludas mentioned a prior member who moved out of state and acknowledged her service and participation in the Federation.
II. D. Ludas welcomed the 2022 Candidates:
a. G. DiPane spoke regarding the race in Monroe. She served 18 years on the North Brunswick Board of Education. She feels her work will be worth it to assist the Board of Education in Monroe in getting back on track.
b. B. Moskowitz noted that it is important to pay attention to the School Board races. Many towns in Middlesex County have candidates that are running and are looking to eliminate curriculum and issues that should be addressed by families. Pay attention to the people who are running and what they are presenting as their positions.
c. C. Azcona-Barber is from New Brunswick and is running for her second term as a County Commissioner. The campaign is doing well. She is looking for help chasing the vote by mail ballots, asking those who have received to return. C. Azcona-Barber is also looking for volunteers to make phone calls. There are signs at headquarters that can be picked up to put in front of houses or businesses. She encouraged everyone to vote early and speak to our members’ families. There are locations in the County to vote early. C. Azcona-Barber cautioned we should not take anything for granted and make sure that the early voting happens.
III. Board of Elections Commissioner and MCDO Vice-Chairperson Beatrice Moskowitz – Update on Voting Options and Campaigns
a. If you received a vote by mail ballot, you are noted as vote by mail. If you want to vote in the booth, you cannot do so. If you go to the polls, you could vote with a provisional ballot, but you would not be counted as early. Voting by mail is not an option; you vote that way or at the polls with the provisional ballot. If you do not have a mail-in ballot, then you should be prepared to vote at the polls.
b. A. Papi discussed the difference between the actual ballot received in the mail and the sample ballot notice for the polls.
c. Voting by mail started over a week ago.
d. New this year is voting early. There are ten sites in the County where people can vote early. Early voting will begin on the 29th of October and will run through the 6th of November. All poll workers are trained in the use of the machines. Early voting results get returned to the Board of Elections regularly. There are five extra days for counting.
e. At the Board of Elections vote by mail ballots are sorted by municipality. Ballots are removed from the envelopes and then put into the voting machines to check/count. The machines are locked up.
f. Primaries were more eventful, but things have settled down. But the local events are encouraging particularly in New Brunswick, the room was filled in support of the candidates. People are so concerned about national issues, they were engaged and listening in on what the candidates were saying.
g. D. Venezia asked about the importance of door to door and personal contact; it is not all about social media. B. Moskowitz addressed stating we need to make certain information is easier to have and share. But door to door is so important this year. The people are seeking a personal connection. B. Moskowitz stated that voters want to meet the people that are running. They want to be confident that the candidates follow global politics but also the specific municipality’s values. The candidate needs to let the town know what he or she stands for.
h. Locations for persons to vote in person will be posted tonight or tomorrow.
IV. Approval of the Minutes of the August 22, 2022, Meeting: L. Massa so moved, E. Zirpolo seconded. All in favor, no abstentions or opposed.
V. Treasurer’s Report – E. Zirpolo reported that $10,830.19 is in the bank account. There are a few candidates’ checks outstanding. There should be a balance of $6,380.19 once all the checks are cashed by the candidate committees. $9,803.32 in income was generated from the Swing By Event.
VI. D. Venezia reviewed the Calendar/Upcoming Events.
MCDO Annual Bus Tour, Sunday, November 6th. Stops in Piscataway, Metuchen (10:30 AM) at Cai’s Coffee Shop, South Amboy, New Brunswick, South Brunswick, East Brunswick (Rally at 3:00 PM – 112 Rues Lane).
MCFDW Holiday Party – Thursday, December 8th. 6:00 PM. Ristorante Venezia, Main Street, Woodbridge. $45 Members; $50 Non-Members. Dinner and cash bar.
Toiletry collection for Dinah’s Dwelling will be held. Dinah’s Dwelling is a residence located in New Brunswick for women who are victims of domestic violence. The apartments house the women and their children.
Working on the Hats On Event. April 23rd or April 30th. The event will be a brunch.
VII. Social Media – Like and Share! Discussed the updates to the website, like and share the information on the Social Media Pages.
VIII. Comments/ New Business.
Open Floor for Comments
Locations for the Hats on Event will be looked at in a few weeks.
The Monroe Township Democratic Chair will be speaking at an upcoming meeting about challenging campaigns.
There was a discussion on new meeting ideas when back in person.
IX. Next Meeting – November 28, 2022. December will be the Holiday Party and no further meeting before year end. In February meetings will likely be back in person. The plan is to have a zoom meeting for the January meeting. Please all have a Happy Thanksgiving and get out and vote!
X. Adjournment of the meeting.