August 2, 2007, Board Meeting Minutes

Minutes of the August 2, 2007 Board Teleconference Meeting
The August 2nd Board Of Directors Teleconference Meeting began at 5:37 PM Pacific Daylight Time.

At roll call, all Board members, except Mike Godino, Ed Bradley and Oral Miller were present. Mike Godino and Ed Bradley joined the meeting a bit later.

President Pomerantz reviewed the agenda, asking for any additions or deletions. Hearing none, Mr. Campbell moved approval of the agenda, the motion carried.

Mr. Gray moved to accept the Minutes of the Post Convention Board Meeting; the motion carried.

DC office Report, Melanie Brunson Ms. Brunson has written to YTB Travel, letting them know that ACB is discontinuing its partnership with them. She also contacted DaMar Travel, informing them that the ACB web site is being or will be corrected to reflect DaMar as ACB’s exclusive travel agent. Ms. Brunson will follow-up with our Minneapolis office and DaMar to ensure that all aspects of the current contract have been met, and will continue to be met.

Patricia Castillo has moved to a new position whose title is potentially Assistant Coordinator for Affiliate Services. Ms. Brunson will get the job description to the Board, but essentially Ms. Castillo will be the staff representative on some of the committees that provide services to affiliates, such as the Scholarship, Membership, McDaniel and Awards Committees.

Ms. Brunson reported that her review of the proposed Constitution and Bylaws for ACB of Wisconsin appeared to be in order. She stated she made a couple of suggestions, which were accepted. Ms. Ruschival moved to charter the ACB of Wisconsin. The motion carried. Mr. Campbell has been invited to attend the ACB of Wisconsin convention in October, and will carry the charter to them.

Approval of Resolutions R07-21 CAPTCHA. Mr. Campbell moved to adopt, and the motion carried.

R07-24 Access to Currency. Mr. Campbell moved to adopt the resolution. Mr. Thom moved to change the word "include" to "consider"; Mr. Campbell accepted that change as friendly, and the motion to adopt carried.

The text of these two resolutions is attached to these minutes.

Online Petition to Yahoo Ms. Lieberg informed the Board that she had been approached by a member, asking for ACB official support of an online petition to Yahoo regarding creation of an accessible CAPTCHA at Yahoo to allow blind users equal access. Mr. Gray moved that the Board ask the President to communicate with the petition makers and go on record as supporting the petition. The motion carried, and Yahoo will be sent a copy of ACB Resolution 07-21.

ADA Restoration Act The Board was interested in supporting the ADA Restoration Act, but felt that as an organization of blind people, we must seek more than the current bill offers. Mr. Campbell moved that ACB give its qualified support to the legislation which has been introduced known as The ADA Restoration Act of 2007 with such support being granted for the purpose of ACB being at the table to engage in dialogue with members of Congress, other disability organizations and others concerning inclusion of such things as access to web sites in the legislation. Mr. Tom offered a friendly amendment to this motion, which was accepted by Mr. Campbell, that ACB express its support for the ADA Restoration Act And its strong desire to have the Act amended to address issues of concern to persons who are blind or visually impaired. The motion as amended was carried.

Recent Bequest to ACB President Pomerantz informed the Board that ACB has received a bequest totaling $400,000.00. Mr. Gray moved that in keeping with previously adopted Board policy, this Board reaffirm that policy by placing $325,000 into the Board Designated Reserve Fund, and retain the remaining $75,000 for the General Fund. Through Ms. Brunson, Mr. Waters, Comptroller, has suggested that all or a portion of these funds go to an endowment for scholarships. Mr. Trott expressed his desire to move the Braille Forum back to 12 months per year. Discussion of the Board policy on which Mr. Gray's motion is based revealed that this policy is in direct compliance with the direction of the Membership to build reserves of one million dollars. Ms. Dillon requested consideration of Board stipends, to address the concern of seeming to exclude those who are not financially able to travel with their own resources. Ms. Ruschival expressed the hope that these funds could go into the line item Ms. Lieberg requested consideration of funding a development position. President Pomerantz advised that this issue would be dealt with by the budget Committee. Ms. Charlson stated she supports this motion, and agrees that the concerns expressed by other Board members should be placed on the agenda for the Budget Committee. The motion carried with one no vote cast by Ms. Keith, and one abstention cast by Ms. Vloedman.

Elections Board Representative to Public Relations Committee. Ms. Keith was nominated. Mr. Trott moved to elect Ms. Keith by acclaimation, and the motion was carried.

Board Representative to Credentials Committee. Mr. Campbell was nominated. Ms. Lieberg moved to elect Mr. Campbell by acclamation; the motion carried.

Other Committees President Pomerantz has asked Lynn Wachtell of Ohio to serve as the Affiliate President representative, along with Mr. Godino and Mr. Bradley on the Office Review Committee.

Other The Fall Board meeting will be the weekend of October 13. Ms. Ruschival is working hard to find the best location possible. The location will be decided and disclosed soon.

Ms. Lieberg asked for an update on working with sign language interpreters at Convention. President Pomerantz stated that right now, ACB is looking at having a host committee person serve as an accommodations person. Mr. Campbell asked when the Convention Coordinating Committee would be named, and President Pomerantz indicated we should see an announcement in the next ten days.

Ms. Brunson stated that ACB received an unrestricted gift of funds from proceeds of a stock sale in this past week.

President Pomerantz stated that ACB's attorneys are at a critical juncture with regard to NTI. The software manufacturer is allowing ACB to have our own expert verify accessibility of their software. He will take this proposal to NELDS and the ACB Advocacy Services Committee, since there is cost associated with this.

ACB will host a reception/open house at the national office for President Pomerantz, which will likely occur in December. The purpose for this reception will be to give relevant agency staff in Washington an opportunity to meet the new ACB President.

Ms. Brunson reminded the Board that she'd like to receive items appropriate to her from the Board List. Mr. Trott agreed to send items of interest from the Board list she may need.

The Teleconference adjourned at 7:51.

Marlaina Lieberg
Approved: October 13, 2008

Attachments: R07-21, R07-24

R07-21 Captcha

WHEREAS, proprietors of websites have found it necessary to use graphical image verification (CAPTCHA) to enhance website security and to ensure consumer privacy; and

Whereas, the use of CAPTCHA on websites has recently increased for purposes relating to identity verification; and

Whereas the images and codes that are used for CAPTCHA are inaccessible to people who are blind and visually impaired; and

Whereas, title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) which addresses the obligation of places of public accommodation to make their goods and services accessible to people with disabilities "has not been consistently applied to websites;

Now therefore, be it resolved by the American Council of the Blind, in convention assembled, this 6th day of July, 2007, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Minneapolis, Minnesota, that this organization strongly urges the United States Department of Justice to apply Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act to website proprietors who deny access to their websites by users who are blind and visually impaired, through use of inaccessible CAPTCHA and to establish appropriate enforcement mechanisms that assure compliance with web access guidelines by website proprietors.

Be it further resolved that officers directors and staff of ACB are directed to engage in consultation and to provide technical assistance to website designers, and standard-setting bodies to ameliorate the current egregious barriers to web access caused by current applications of CAPTCHA.

R07-24 Access to Currency

WHEREAS, the United States Treasury has, within the past five years, made changes to the appearance of various denominations of United States currency, and

WHEREAS, the changes made have included the placing of the denomination amount in enlarged print on one of the eight corners of each United States bill of legal tender, starting with the five dollar denomination and higher denominations; and

Whereas, other subtle improvements were made at the same time in the visual appearance of money, and

WHEREAS, having the enlarged print denomination marking on only one of eight corners of currency means that users of enlarged print must organize currency very carefully, which is a time-consuming process resulting in a lack of efficiency in handling money, and resulting in it usually remaining impossible for low vision people to work competitively at jobs requiring handling of cash, and

WHEREAS, the American Council of the Blind (ACB) has filed suit against the United States Treasury alleging that failure to create a United States currency accessible to all blind and visually impaired United States citizens is a violation of Section 504 of Public Law 93-112, and

WHEREAS, although a favorable decision has been rendered with regard to that suit at the district court level, the United States Treasury has appealed this ruling, which is now awaiting review from a higher court; and

WHEREAS a system of tactual marking of bills alone may not improve accessibility to currency for individuals who may experience neuropathy or other tactual insensitivity in addition to visual impairments;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, by the American Council of the Blind, in convention assembled, this 6th day of July, 2007, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Minneapolis, Minnesota, that this Organization joins with its affiliate, the Council of Citizens with Low Vision International, (CCLVI) in encouraging that any solutions ultimately achieved in terms of accessibility to United States currency, consider both tactile markings or adaptation of currency, and also the placing of enlarged print font denomination numbers on all eight corners of each bill of legal tender.

Be it further resolved that ACB joins with CCLVI in encouraging increased use of bright and contrasting colors as future changes are made to United States currency.