Executive Council Meeting

January 29, 2005
Muncie IN

Official

Not in attendance at the January 29, 2005 Executive Council meeting were President Dave Brown and NAA Representative David Ivey. The Executive Vice President Doug Holland chaired the meeting. The chair indicated that the meeting would be conducted under time limits.

The meeting was called to order at 8:05 a.m.

In Attendance
President's Report
Executive Vice President's Report
Executive Director's Report
NAA Report
Committee Reports
New Business

Motions:
I To accept report of Muncie Site ...
II To establish an RC Scale Aerobatics ...

The following were approved by acclamation:

  • To accept the minutes of the October 30, 2004 Executive Council meeting ...

  • To accept the Ad hoc Committee on Safety Code documents, titled ...

The following were approved by mail vote:

  • To amend Motion VI (February 2004): It was moved that effective with the 2005 Chartered Club Renewal, all clubs are required to name a safety coordinator or officer. This position must have access to E-mail ...

  • To accept the firm of Brady, Ware as the auditor’s for the 2005 AMA Audit.
     

IN ATTENDANCE
Executive Vice President Doug Holland, Raleigh, NC; District Vice Presidents: I-Andy Argenio, Smithfield, RI; II-Dave Mathewson, Baldwinsville, NY; III-Bob Brown, Bradford, PA; IV-Bliss Teague, Hickory, NC; V-Tony Stillman, Pensacola, FL; VI-Charlie Bauer, Norridge, IL; VII-Bill Oberdieck, Southgate, MI; VIII-Sandy Frank, Weatherford, TX; IX-Mark T. Smith, Shawnee, KS; X-Rich Hanson, Scottsdale, AZ; XI-Bruce Nelson, Spokane, WA; Executive Director Don Koranda and Felix Gora, Legal Counsel.

Attending AMA Headquarter's staff were Joyce Hager; Tom Schwyn; Carl P. Maroney; Rob Kurek; and Jay Mealy. Also in attendance were Russ Miller, outgoing District IX VP and Larry Johnson of Harry A. Koch Co.

The EVP welcomed the three new Vice Presidents.


PRESIDENT’S REPORT (Appendix I)

  • The President submitted a “State of the Union” address which was read by the Executive Director.

  • As required, the VPs were asked to name their two choices of replacements (in order of preference) in the event they are unable to fulfill their duties. I-Bob Wallace, second choice to be named later; II-unchanged; III-unchanged; IV-Randy Elliot, Steve Moulton; V-Ron Van Putte, Paul Berger; VI-Bob Underwood, Hal Parenti; VII-unchanged; VIII-unchanged; IX-Travis McGinnis, Gerry Tuttle; X-unchanged; XI-Dave Legard, Darryl Anderson.

  • Review of committees is also done at the first meeting of the year. The number of committees is very large and the president will be reviewing them for function and necessity. He would like to have the following people assigned to the respective committees: Nominating Committee Chairman-Bliss Teague (up for election in 2005 are the offices of EVP, and Districts III, VII, and XI VPs); Budget Committee Chairman-Travis McGinnis; and Insurance Committee Chairman-Mark Smith.

At this point in the meeting D. Holland noted a change in the agenda; the RC Scale Aerobatic issue will be discussed under NEW BUSINESS. An executive session will be held following the Executive Director’s report.

It was moved, seconded and approved by acclamation to accept the minutes of the October 30, 2004 Executive Council meeting.

EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT'S REPORT (Appendix II)

  • Bond issue-interest has been extremely low (approx. 1.2%) but is now inching up (1.95%); the EVP is not certain how long it will continue to rise. At some point may look at doing a debt swap or permanent financed fixed rate on this money depending on the market.

  • Investments continue to grow. Last year’s increase was around $240,000.

  • The 2004 Audit report will be distributed as soon as it is available. Summary report will be given at next meeting.

  • Cash increase over the last year has been the lowest in a number of years.

  • The net for 2004 is forecast to be $501,000.

  • The EVP noted an increase in the purchase of Life Memberships; he is reviewing the funding for providing services to these members. There are currently 577 members who have paid for their Life Memberships and 769 who have earned or been awarded Life Membership.

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S REPORT 

  • Koranda began his position as Executive Director on December 6, 2004. He has conveyed to department heads what his expectations are and what the members expect of them. As Council is already aware, the staff is very dedicated and works hard to provide the quality service that everyone wants of this association.

  • The ED mentioned just a few of the items Headquarters is currently working on: revising the club charter kit in an effort to streamline it; with the help of T. Stillman, the issue of shipping charges has been addressed; reviewing the organizational structure; Web site—the ED understands there are major concerns with the Web site and notes it is a critical item which will require much time and attention; will be establishing a cost accounting across the board that will allow for quick identification of where expenses are and the cost of providing services. Koranda stated he is focusing on two goals (aside from whatever else is established): growing the membership and providing quality member service.

  • Membership Report—J. Hager: J. Hager reported that membership is running 95% compared to the same time last year; hobby shops are bringing in the most new members for 2005 (1371); 748 90-day trial memberships of which 613 have upgraded to full memberships; and approximately 12,000 members have taken advantage of the on-line renewals (this is the first year this service has been offered).
         In a brief discussion of an item left over from the last meeting relative to Air Show Teams, it was decided to not allow Air Show Teams to sign up and take payment for new memberships. The ED noted a discussion he had with T. Schwyn and M. Harrington at the AMA Convention; he feels that a program will be forthcoming that will support the show teams and generate attention to the AMA.

  • J. Hager and T. Schwyn are in the process of addressing what AMA can do to attract those still considered in the renewal cycle (those who have not renewed their membership yet.)

  • Marketing Report—T. Schwyn: The new credit card program with U.S. Bank was launched in November and representatives were at the AMA Convention; Web links went live this week between AMA and the U.S. Bank sites. D. Mathewson's opinion is that some of these funds should be set aside.
         The pilot run of DVDs (revenue generating program) went well; will proceed with a full launch (Volume 1) of 50,000 pieces later in February and work has started on Volumes 2 and 3. The cost of the introductory DVD was $9; the average cost for future pieces will be between $17.95 and $18.95/piece. The revenue for AMA is 8% of sales and the current forecast is approximately $50,000/year. It was stated that VHS tapes would be available (through TN) if the amount of requests warranted it. Schwyn then reviewed a growth plan which targets a goal of a 200,000 total membership in five years; this breaks down to an average of 5% growth per year (above and beyond attrition).
         D. Mathewson noted the decline in membership and expressed an opinion that AMA should stop using the dues increase as a crutch or excuse for the declining membership; there is a significant difference between what is happening now and what has happened in the past. These days, the sale of hobby-related items is up yet AMA membership is down; data will show that the percentage of decline this time around is far greater than it ever was during the last dues increase.

  • AMA Convention—J. Mealy: Mealy thanked those who worked and helped out at the convention. The number of exhibit booths increased in 2005; 142 individual exhibitors, 17 of which were clubs or SIGs; over 600 exhibitor badges printed; booth sales generated $69,275; attendance was 6,849, this is down from last year and can possibly be attributed to the weather; 42% of ticket sales at the convention center door were to AMA members, 58% to non-members; 24 seminars presented during three-day period. Changes for 2006 were reviewed. Included in those changes will be an improved way to count attendees. Any constructive comments and suggestions regarding the convention should be sent to J. Mealy. Final financial figures are not available yet; it is expected a report will be sent to the Executive Council following J. Mealy’s return from Puyallup.

  • Model Aviation—R. Kurek: The magazine staff has been addressing the issue of making the magazine a more effective communication tool for the members; and they are in the process of redesigning/reformatting the magazine. The ED is looking for close cooperation between magazine staff and the Publications Committee to make the appropriate changes to enhance the effectiveness of the magazine as a tool to communicate with the members. Kurek should share staff ideas with the Publications Committee and suggestions from Council should be forwarded to B. Brown.

Break 9:35 a.m. – 9:50 a.m.

Executive Session

NAA REPORT

NAA representative was not in attendance. No report.

COMMITTEE REPORTS

Ad hoc Committee on Disaster Relief Fund
Following discussion on the purpose and structure of this committee, the item was referred back to the ad hoc committee. The committee should investigate the issues involved with providing assistance. A set of guidelines and a source of funding should be presented to the Executive Council for its approval.

Muncie Site Usage (Appendix III)
The report was distributed at the October 2004 meeting and is again included within this agenda. The committee was to evaluate the use of the International Flying Site in Muncie. The chairman reviewed the recommendations presented in the report. Item 2 was modified (at October 2004 meeting) to read “No event may close the site without approval of the AMA Site Committee.”


MOTION I: It was moved and seconded accept the report of the Muncie Site Usage Committee, presented at the October 30, 2004, Executive Council meeting.
MOTION passed unanimously.

Ad hoc Committee on Safety Code (Appendix IV)
This is the last step in the review of the Safety Code that the committee addressed. At the October meeting the Executive Council approved the modifications to the wording of the Safety Code. The second part of the task was to create two documents that could be used by EC and staff (glossary of terms found in the code and intent of some rules found in the code). Council received these documents (via E-mail) for review prior to this meeting; Mathewson reviewed two minor changes that had been made.
     Recently, a member raised an issue relative to the use of ground-based pyrotechnics. His inquiry is not addressed under the Safety Code, General item 8. This issue was referred to the Safety Committee for consideration. (See paragraph 7 of Comments to Glossary and Interpretative Documents.) The ad hoc committee further noted that Safety Code, General item 8 refers to an Air Show Advisory Committee Document but this document is not available on the AMA Web site. The ad hoc committee recommends this document be placed on the Web site in addition to being referenced in the Safety Code under SPECIALIZED SUPPLEMENTAL SAFETY CODES.
     The ad hoc committee recognizes that once the flying season begins, questions will be asked relative to the changes made in the code. It is being recommended that a standing committee be appointed, however, the ad hoc committee agrees to stay in place for the remainder of this year until the President or Executive Council decides whether to create a standing committee. It may also be that any questions regarding the code will be forwarded to the Safety Committee; a policy or procedure needs to be determined.

It was moved, seconded, and approved by acclamation to accept the ad hoc Committee on Safety Code documents, titled Safety Code Glossary and AMA Safety Code Interpretation and Intent, for use by the Executive Council and AMA Staff.

Note: These documents should be forwarded to L. Helms to create a finalized form.

Bylaws
The chairman believed that the work completed at the October meeting relative to wording for the EVP position, was to be sent to the EC for a final vote and then to the Leader Members for a vote. This was being done so it would be in place for this year’s election of the EVP position. Following the October meeting, the President felt further consideration was needed by the EC. Under the current time constraints, nothing can be done that would affect this year’s election.

The chairman voiced his concern regarding the process being used; negating the established process of how the Bylaws are changed and the work of the Committee as a whole. The chairman will contact the President and express his concerns relative to this issue and advise the President of his intention to resign as chairman; the ED will also contact the President and discuss the matter.

Safety Video
It was reported that the majority of accidents occur in the area of sport flying, so this is where the video will be directed. Oberdieck reviewed the outline of items to be presented in the video, which will include emphasis on preflight, how to get started, how to work with an instructor pilot, and postflight. A storybook has yet to be developed. The next issues the committee intends to address are the mechanics of how it will be produced. The ED requested that he be involved in the next phase of the committee’s discussion. Input from the SIGs has been solicited; very little response from them at this point. The committee will continue to pursue input from the SIGs.

Ad hoc Committee on Attaining Indoor/Park Flyer Flying Sites
This committee was appointed at the October 2004 meeting; three individuals were appointed to the committee pending their acceptance to serve. Two of those individual declined and the third indicated he would not be available until after the Weak Signals show in Toledo. An appeal for feedback on attaining sites was published in "On the Fly" in the magazine, however, it did not produce the desired results. At this point, a few handouts are available for individuals looking to acquire sites; names of individuals willing to serve on the committee should be forwarded to S. Frank.

Ad hoc Committee on Flying Site Assistance Program
This committee was to investigate the concept of generating nondues revenue earmarked for the Flying Site Assistance Program via block advertisements in Model Aviation. No report at this time.

Lunch 12:05 p.m. – 12:58 p.m.

OLD BUSINESS
There were no items of old business to address.
NEW BUSINESS

Request approval for funding new FF site (Appendix V)
L. Estep advised Council that one of his missions during his tenure with the Academy is to increase the number of dual events that can be held on site. In an effort to increase the flexibility/usability of the entire site and reduce the potential of Free Flight models flying off AMA property, he would like Council to consider extending the McCool parking lot 200 feet to the east. Doing so would provide FF groups a NE flying site they currently don’t have. (Free Flight models could be launched from the grass field directly south of the expanded parking lot.) The lot would provide additional parking for the McCool site as well. (There are currently 14 CL events scheduled on the site for 2005.) J. Hager informed Council that P. Sullivan was the first person who brought her the diagram for the FF site in a proposal. She has had some conversation with Rex Hinson (NFFS President) and the idea was discussed at the Nats planning meeting.
     Comments/discussion included: preliminary discussion with Hinson indicate he is in favor of the idea, however, written confirmation will be requested; looking for a favorable nod by Council to proceed with investigating the idea; B. Brown needs to review the specifications since drainage tiles, gas lines, etc. need to be considered; if approval was given at the April meeting it may be possible to have ready in time for the 2005 Nats; consideration should be given to determine if this extension is actually warranted; and the site must be designed so it maximizes all fliers opportunities, not just one discipline.
     A recommendation will be brought back at the April meeting for approval by Council.
     Council received an update on the 2005 Nats; members should be encouraged to download Nats entry forms from the AMA Web site. They also received an informational item addressing an active RC frequency-control system that would allow flying on various sites once Nats events are finished for the day. (Specific frequencies allowed at specific sites.) Cost for the system software is $7,500. Careful consideration must be given to the logistics of this system. There would be four or five electronic frequency boards on site; a wireless network system would need to be set up; a server would need to be set up at Nats Headquarters; determine whether the system would be used during Nats only or during the entire flying season. In addition, the equipment would need to be protected from vandalism, possible theft, and the weather. There are an extreme number of variables to consider in connection with the system. It was reiterated that this item was presented as an informational piece only; if it is determined that a system is warranted, a proposal will be brought before Council for approval.

Strategic Planning Meeting
Koranda explained that planning for the meeting on February 12-13 was in progress. What should be taken from this meeting is a general direction with specific goals (thinking very broadly) that Council wants to go after. He and the HQ staff will take that information and work out specific steps needed to attain those goals. M. Smith provided a document indicating the steps in the development of a strategic plan. (He has done strategic plans for such organizations as Habitat for Humanity and United Way.) Constant communication between staff and Council is essential to the success of strategic planning.

Review Concerns Provided by Outgoing VP
J. Dunlap submitted a letter to Council indicating five points she felt needed to be addressed. Koranda explained that action has already been taken in response to some of her concerns.

1) Appropriate identification will be placed on the outgoing envelopes containing bills/ballots.
2) Rules/Regulations for candidates running for office—The AMA does have guidelines.
3) Candidates purchase of ad space in MA—This will be mentioned in the information provided to all nominated candidates.
4) Define how a LM of AMA should act—Council felt this is not something AMA should legislate.
5) Family membership—AMA does not have a ‘family membership’ per se, however, it does offer a reduced rate to additional family members wishing to join. To qualify for the additional family member rate, the name and AMA number of the full paying Open member must be provided; youth memberships are $1 without the magazine. It is Council’s opinion that no further action is needed.

RC Scale Aerobatics Contest Board
J. Hager read the request submitted by R. Barrow; it is included with the agenda. It points out that in 2004 alone IMAC experienced a growth rate of more than 65%. Koranda noted that both the AMA President and S. Kaluf support this.


MOTION II: It was moved and seconded to establish an RC Scale Aerobatics Contest Board.
MOTION passed unanimously.
Note: As is established procedure, the District Vice Presidents will appoint their respective representatives to this Contest Board. The SIG may suggest nominees for appointment. (SIG recommendations were provided in the agenda.)

An item that was handed out re AMA promotion of buddy box use will be discussed at the next meeting when the President is present.

C. Bauer asked to receive a complete list of members of the various Team Selection Committees. This should be sent to all VPs.

AWARDSAll awards were moved, seconded, and approved by acclamation.

Assorted items discussed that were not included on the agenda

  • It was reported that Hal deBolt has been sick for the past year. Things have taken a turn for the worse and he is currently in a care center. Bud Tenny has been fighting cancer and is currently in a nursing home.
  • The 2004 Nominating Committee met the day prior to the July EC meeting; this was done to ensure sufficient time for discussion of the ballot. It was decided today that the Nominating Committee for 2005 will meet the morning of (8:00 a.m.) the July 9 EC meeting.
  • The VPs have been reviewing club bylaws. It was decided to discontinue sending copies to the Vice Presidents. Koranda stated he will get together with C. Maroney to determine the best way to review the comments submitted by the VP and provide feedback to Council.
  • A club contacted AMA for guidance in regard to an issue involving the medical condition of one of its members. Maroney read AMA’s response to the club, which supported their decision. The ED stated this was a situation where the club looked to AMA for confirmation, and it was appropriate for Maroney to indicate AMA supported the club's decision. He further noted that AMA does not have a specific policy that would address the issue in question. Council should be aware that down the road it could become necessary to establish a policy that would address this type of situation.

NEXT MEETING
April 23-24, 2005

The meeting was adjourned at 2:43 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by JoAnne Brown recording secretary for the January 29, 2005 Executive Council meeting.