1009 EC minutes
Executive Council Meeting
October 31, 2009
The President called the meeting to order at 8:00 a.m. District XI VP Bruce Nelson and NAA Rep Jonathan Gaffney were not in attendance.
1. Opening Business
Introductions: President Dave Mathewson, Baldwinsville, NY; EVP Mark T. Smith, Shawnee, KS; CFO Doug Holland, Raleigh, NC; District Vice Presidents: I-Andy Argenio, Smithfield, RI; II-Gary Fitch, Franklinville, NY; III-Bob Brown, Bradford, PA; IV-Bliss Teague, Hickory, NC; V-Tony Stillman, Brunswick, GA; VI-Charlie Bauer, Norridge, IL; VII-Bill Oberdieck, Southgate, MI; VIII-Jim Rice, Universal City, TX; IX-Jim Wallen, Arvada, CO; X-Jim Giffin, Redding, CA; AMA Legal Counsel Felix Gora, Rendigs Fry Kiely &Dennis and Executive Director Jim Cherry.
HQ staff in attendance was Joyce Hager, John Hawley, Shawn Grubbs, Craig Schroeder, Jeff Nance, Greg Hahn, Lisa Johnson, Rob Kurek, Ilona Maine, Michael Smith and Greg Minch.
Others in attendance were Russ Miller, Finance Committee; Dale Chiavene, District VI Contest Coordinator; William L. Payne, Investment Mgt and Audit Oversight Committee; Dennis Baack, AVP District VI; Richard Hanson, AMA GRA; Paul Bretsen, Harry A. Koch Co. and Shirley Teague.
Additions to the Agenda: Old Business items – AVP Appreciation, AMA History Update; New Business items – AMA Forum, FCC Issue
Final Flight recognition: a moment of silence was observed for Walter DeFrees, Miles Reed and Pete Reed.
2. Consent Agenda:
It was moved, seconded and approved by acclamation to approve the minutes of the July 25, 2009 Executive Council meeting.
The President deviated from the agenda to allow for discussion of the budget and the Finance Committee report.
Finance Committee Report
• R. Miller referred Council to the memo dated Oct. 30, 2009 that refers to the Committee’s observations during the budget development process
• Sun-setting programs may become necessary, as could cutbacks
• Custom Products will be restructured by January 1, 2010
• FAI continues to be an expensive program to the general members; any changes in this program should first be considered by the FAI Executive Committee
• An exit strategy from the PPP should be developed for 2011 if needed
• It was recommended to restore the total allocation to the district budgets; this is money that impacts the districts grass roots activities
• In the spirit of these economic times it is appropriate to tighten belts
MOTION I: Moved by B. Brown (III) and seconded by B. Teague (IV) to amend the proposed 2010 budget to restore the total allocation to the officer’s account defined by policy and distributed per accepted practice.
MOTION passed: 9-Y; 2-N (V, IX)
As a result of MOTION I, the bottom line of the budget must be amended.
MOTION II: Moved by C. Bauer (VI) and seconded by B. Teague (IV) to approve the 2010 Budget as amended. Amendment: change the bottom line on page 7 to read $13,302.
MOTION passed: 10-Y; 1-N (VII)
The President thanked R. Miller, the committee and AMA staff for their work on the budget.
a. 2010 EC meeting dates There was discussion on whether to hold the January meeting during the Ontario Show. Giffin reported that he has a booth reserved for District X during the show, but will not fund all of his representatives to attend the show if the Council meeting is not held there. There was a request to change the proposed July and October meeting dates; this was done without conflict. Council may want to consider using teleconferencing prior to EC meetings; this could result in shorter, more efficient meetings.
MOTION III: Moved by C. Bauer (VI) and seconded by G. Fitch (II) that the dates for the 2010 Executive Council meeting will be January 23/24; April 24/25; August 14/15 and November 6/7.
MOTION passed: 8-Y; 3-N (VII, X and EVP)
The Finance Committee meeting date was changed to September 24, 2010.
MOTION IV: Moved by B. Brown (III) and seconded by A. Argenio (I) that funding for Executive Council members to attend and support the AMA Expo in Ontario, CA will be from the general AMA Budget.
MOTION passed unanimously
b. 2010 general membership meeting
MOTION V: Moved by B. Brown (III) and seconded by A. Argenio (I) that the Official General Membership Meeting will be held during IRCHA, with supporting membership meetings at the AMA Expo in Ontario CA and Joe Nall.
MOTION passed unanimously
c. AMA/Goldberg Vital People Award
Only one member from each district can receive an award; the recipients for 2009 are:
District II – Herb Ziegler
District III – Bill Jones
District IV – Frank Geisler
District VI – Robert Arata
District X – Bob Shanks
Each recipient receives a plaque and a check for $200. District VP’s will be notified by letter of the recipient and the nominator will determine how the plaque/check shall be awarded.
d. EAA Update The meeting with EAA was cancelled Friday due to weather (EAA reps were coming in by small airplane). They are anxious to hold the meeting and will reschedule ASAP with J. Nance.
a. Travel/Expense Policy The Investment/Audit Committee met Friday and addressed compliance with the IRS codes and maintaining 501(c)3 status; therefore will look at updating the travel and expense policy for the Council. A draft policy document will be sent to Council by December 1, 2009 for their review. A conference call will be held sometime in December to address any changes.
b. FAA The EVP is investigating the feasibility of enlisting the help of a lobbyist to provide us with insight into regulatory matters pertaining to AMA.
There is nothing additional to report at this time.
a. IRS 990 FORM Regulations require the President and CFO review the document prior to it being mailed to the IRS; this has been accomplished. The document is available (or will be after this meeting) on the AMA website for Council review.
b. Flying Site Coordinator Program HQ is restructuring the coordinator program and will seek out one individual to be proactive on AMA’s flying site acquirement efforts; this person will be accountable to the Executive Director. The position description can be found within the agenda.
MOTION VI: Moved by J. Rice (VIII) and seconded by T. Stillman (V) to adopt the Executive Director proposal to restructure the Flying Site Assistance Program.
MOTION passed: 9-Y; 1-N (X); EVP was out of room for vote
c. Vendor/Site fees and rules A proposal is on the table to require any food vendor that utilizes the site, to join the Flight Support Team (FST) program at the lowest level; this is $195/year. Approximately 1/3 of the vendors have supported the Academy by joining the FST.
Another proposal addresses non-food vendors who use the site. This proposal requires a per-event fee (such as for XFC or IRCHA) of $50/vendor, or an annual fee of $100/vendor for those that use the site multiple times over a year.
A motion was made and seconded to adopt the ED proposal relative to Vendor/Site fees and rules for the IAC for 2010 as proposed October 30, 2009.
Discussion: shouldn’t charge the food vendors as they are very difficult to obtain in the first place; concern with vendors being charged by the AMA as well as the event organizers; this policy would need to be clearly stated in an information packet if instituted; there should be a fee for someone to come on to the AMA property and sell their product; organizations that donate products and services to the AMA would be exempt from these fees; there was concern with defining ‘donations’ relative to who would pay and who would not; include in policies the reason for instituting fees (maintenance and upkeep of the property); consider charging by space rented.
The motion was withdrawn. Council agrees on the need for this type of policy and HQ was instructed to refine the policy taking into consideration the comments and concerns expressed by Council. A revision is expected to be discussed during the December conference call.
d. Required/Minimum number of pilots before flying site is closed Note: the following does not apply during the Nationals. The introduction of 2.4 has provided the opportunity to hold more than one event on the IAC at any one time. To date, HQ has not had the authority to open the site during a flying event if the CD was not amenable; Site 4 is always open for the use of 2.4. HQ is looking for some guidance to institute a policy that allows them to open unused sites where possible. If a group requests use of the entire site, they must be able to substantiate that need.
MOTION VII: Moved by G. Fitch (II) and seconded by T. Stillman (V) that HQ staff will coordinate with the Contest Director for optimum site usage; ultimate authority will rest with the Executive Director or his/her designee. The following modification was added to the motion and approved by consensus: If a world championship is held on site, no other flying will be held during the operating hours of that event.
MOTION passed unanimously
For clarification, it was approved by consensus that during a world championship the site is closed to outside flying until the event director states that the event is completed for the day. The Executive Director or his/her designee will manage the site to this requirement.
e. Mail Vote The email vote of September 15, 2009 re additional expenditures for Museum Addition/Change Orders was unanimously approved.
f. Flying Site Coordinators Reports These reports are included in the agenda packet.
g. Affinity Programs
Motel 6 – They have proposed a program that offers a 5% discount to AMA members; AMA would be paid a 5% commission quarterly. AMA would have no obligation to them other than to promote Motel 6 when possible; there will be no direct cash out of pocket for AMA. They will not contact our members in any way.
Veritas – J. Hager has been investigating affinity programs in an effort to bring in non-dues revenue; it is expected that three programs will be presented to Council for their approval each quarter. Council will review the information that will be presented to members prior to it being sent. The programs that are being considered are Clean Value Hearing, ID Theft Protection and Health Services. AMA will be responsible for marketing the programs and will begin with an email; members will not be contacted by phone. The cheapest way to promote these programs to the members is through the magazine; will also use banner ads on the website. The US Bank credit card affinity program in place now has been extremely successful for AMA; it expires next year.
MOTION VIII: Moved by J. Giffin (X) and seconded by C. Bauer (VI) to proceed with the affinity programs as presented.
MOTION passed unanimously
MOTION IX: Moved by J. Giffin (X) and seconded by T. Stillman (V) to proceed with the Motel 6 proposal.
MOTION passed unanimously
There was a brief discussion about those members who have checked the box for no solicitation; this box refers to official AMA business. It was agreed that a carefully worded push email will be sent to all those members who have opted out announcing the new affinity programs stating our records indicate that you have opted out and we will continue to honor that however we want to afford you the opportunity to take part in these new programs. Nance will work with M. Smith on drafting this email. Council will review this email prior to it being sent.
For clarification to the membership department, it was the consensus of Council that if a members’ record shows that they have previously opted out and that box is not checked on their renewal notice, it will be considered as an opt back in.
h. Teleconference/Webinar The ED encouraged Council to take advantage of the teleconference services for meetings with their AVP’s and committees; these will be coordinated through L. Johnson. Webinar privileges have now been secured; the AMA will set it up and turn control over to whoever is coordinating the meeting. This service should also be coordinated through L. Johnson. Information on these services will be reported on in the reissue of the committee chairman handbook.
MOTION X: Moved by B. Brown (III) and seconded by C. Bauer (VI) to approve 5A status for the 2010 Nationals. Dates for the 2010 Indoor Nationals will be as established by the Nats Committee; dates for Outdoor are July 5 – August 11, 2010.
MOTION passed unanimously
**Subsequent to the Council meeting, the dates for the Indoor Nationals were established as May 25-30, 2010 in Johnson City, TN
Numerous event directors are requiring the use of 2.4; this will be clearly stated in the Nats information. The issue of low entry was touched on briefly; policy is that those events with three consecutive years of fewer than five entrants will be cut. The SIG’s have been empowered to run their events and the more events run helps to cut their costs.
The work of the committee goes forward but at this time there are no insurance issues that require EC approval. There was discussion on the policy relative to changing the Safety Code mid-year and modifications to some exclusionary language in the insurance policy. Westchester has been open to conversation on adjusting the policy and working on policy language. The Safety Code has no connections to the insurance policy and changes could be made to the Safety Code as long as there was proper notification to the members. Changes in the Safety Code should be run by the Insurance Committee to ensure changes do not compromise the current provisions in the policy. Changes made to the Safety Code that affects insurance policy language need to be considered by Westchester prior to the policy effective date of April 1.
c. Safety The committee is working on several issues but does not have anything to bring to Council at this time. They have received a request to review the battery requirements for turbine jets; the ETC committee has been asked to provide technical input before a decision is made; Stillman suggested they contact R. Schoefield. The committee does an annual review of the Safety Code and any concerns Council has should be forward to J. Rice prior to their meeting during the Toledo show. A minor change was made to the PDF document addressing set back for sport pylon racing.
d. Museum Steering
B. Teague received many positive comments from attendees of the dedication ceremony, including the superintendent of schools and the mayor. The shortfall between the McCullough donation and the total cost for the educational facility was covered by the Museum Patron Fund which is there to assist in museum projects.
7. Old Business
a. FAA Update
The work group has been collecting all of the AMA programs connected to safety and developing a product that can be presented to the FAA. This would include the AMA Safety Code and all supporting documents (including the turbine waiver and experimental aircraft programs). Hanson indicated the final packet will include a risk assessment program; pilot training program (Council desired to leave the reference re site separation as ‘3 miles’ not ‘3 nautical miles’); and an item on Class B airspace (not defined in AMA documents and considered to be a significant issue with the FAA). All told there will be 8-12 documents in the total package. Hanson noted Council should develop a disciplinary policy for violation of the Safety Code but the work group didn’t see this as a component of the safety guidelines.
When presenting the document to FAA there will be a cover transmittal letter; the product will be in DVD format and include an introduction to model aviation. The final product will be presented to Council at the January 2010 EC meeting. Council should review these documents and express concerns to the group within the next 14 days; black text is considered to be okay; blue text needs guidance and clarification from Council.
b. 2010 Flying Site Grant Program The updated application is on the web site; the committee continues to work on the evaluation portion of the document and further changes are expected. The deadline for VP’s to receive the application is March 1, 2010 and Council must send them to HQ by March 15, 2010.
c. AOPA Summit update Things are in place; a local (Tampa) club is very involved with the make-and-take; a small hangar has been obtained for indoor flying (this is where the make-and-take will be housed); an AST simulator trailer will be available (Flying Northern/Southern Aces); there will be an area outside to fly park flyer type planes and it’s expected there will be an indoor flying area at the convention for small planes.
d. Marketing Dept. update Nance briefed Council on the marketing accomplishments August-October. Highlights included integrating the PR function into the department; reported the results of the membership drive; a drive for 2010 is in the works; hobby shop program has reached the 20% targeted goal for the year and will continue reach out; completed a big phase of the AST lead strategy; wrapped up guest speakers for the 2010 AMA Expo; helped increase AMA visibility in Muncie and Indianapolis with PR effort; increased various activities on the web site; increased social media use and is working to fine tune a new advertising strategy.
Discussion included efforts to integrate the web site and magazine; working on an on line sanction story board in an effort to get this process on line (involve contest coordinators), HQ will share this information with Argenios’ committee who is addressing the same issue; will develop a guide to teach people to use the on line sanction process; reviewed analysis of PPP; E. Dobbs created a partnership with Hobby Town corporate and AMA hobby shop program appears regularly in their electronic newsletter; HQ will work on a reward program for those hobby shops (in the hobby shop program) that actively promote AMA; work continues on quantifying the leads garnered at air shows, contacting those that have expressed an interest in an introductory flying lessons; Nance working with group (Exact Target) that has created an email tracking system that will allow AMA to capture data and quantify the AST program (this tracking system has many applications, not just AST); upgrading the AMA village at the Expo (as finances allow); and Nance summarized AMA’s attendance at the AARP 50+ convention.
e. AVP Appreciation Response to a reminder sent in September was underwhelming and the committee recommends this program be put on hold until the economic climate improves; Council concurred.
f. History Program update It was reported that the update is on schedule and the deadline of January 1, 2010 will be met.
As a result of Executive Session the following motions were presented:
MOTION XI: Moved by C. Bauer (VI) and seconded by B. Teague (IV) to proceed with the Museum Directors’ recommendation with the new job title of Museum Educator.
MOTION passed unanimously
MOTION XII: Moved by J. Wallen (IX) and seconded by G. Fitch (II) that the Executive Council accept the ED Evaluation Committee’s recommendations as proposed.
MOTION passed unanimously
a. Membership renewal timeline policy.
A District VP was approached by a member questioning why, after being out of the AMA for three years, when he joined again he was not considered a new member and afforded a partial year credit. Upon investigation it was found that the traditional policy is that an applicant is considered new after being out of the AMA for five years. It is suggested that a specific policy be established. Discussion included creating incentives for members to renew when they get their notice; it is common practice in some clubs and associations that have an ‘initiation fee’ that if a member does not renew by specified date they must again pay this initiation fee; AMA spends over 16k sending out second renewal notices; it was recommended to institute a penalty if a person does not renew by a specific date, or raise the dues by $10 and if a member renews by the established date they pay $10 less. T. Stillman will chair an ad hoc committee that will draft a policy for Council review at the January EC meeting. The President recommended finding additional committee members from outside of Council; the committee will work with the membership department on this policy.
b. AMA Forum Guidelines need to be established for the moderator (S. Grubbs) of the forum. HQ has put together 3 pages of moderator guidelines taken from other places. When the AMA forum was established it was going to be moderated by someone outside of the HQ building; currently there are three people in HQ doing this and it is becoming very time consuming. The ED noted they are hoping to find someone outside of HQ to do this on a volunteer basis. There is a push to have a safety thread on the forum and J. Rice stated that between himself and I. Maine, they could moderate that thread; the ED recommended waiting to see if the market is pushing in the direction of independent threads. Rice will confer with I. Maine about moderating a safety thread for a 30 day trial period. J. Nance will talk with M. Benson about making the forum link more noticeable on the AMA home page.
c. FCC issue
This issue has to do with a manufacturer importer of 2.4 GHz equipment used in the United States and whether or not the FCC has enforced compliance with their rules on this equipment. It was noted that there is equipment that can be purchased on the internet from Singapore that is not FCC approved (FCC sticker). The ETC would like to put something on the web site that informs members, Leader Members and Contest Director that equipment being used must meet FCC requirements and be FCC approved; if equipment is purchased outside of the United States it may or may not be FCC approved. The FCC requires a permanently affixed label on transmitters and modules that states it is FCC approved. From the information the ETC has gathered to comply with FCC requirements, this information should be on all transmitter or modules now. This information has to be integrated in the Safety Code; currently the code (#4) reads that a member will operate using only RC frequencies currently allowed by the FCC.
The Safety Committee will review this requirement for inclusion in the next change of the Safety Code; they should also address the reference to the FCC Legal Requirement and Safety Recommendations section in the Membership Manual. Rice and Stillman will work on something for inclusion in the code. Stillman will consult with P. Young and write an informational piece to notify members relative to the use of non-certified units. (This can be placed as a ticker on the web site, printed in In the Air section of the magazine, and sent in a push email.)
Some Council members expressed concern with regard to the publication of VP columns every other month. The issue was sent to the Publications Committee to research a way to recover the lost issues and find a way to cover the cost of doing this.
Pacific Aviation Museum-Ford Island Hanson reported on the partnership between the museum and the Birds of Paradise club. The museum hopes to continue the relationship with the club for their air show in 2010; the theme of the show will be piggybacking on the states aviation commemoration of 100 years of manned aviation on the Hawaiian island. The year 2011 will be the 100th anniversary of naval aviation on the island and Hanson feels there is a great opportunity between the two celebrations to showcase AMA. J. Nance has been in contact with Navy personnel regarding a collaborative effort in celebrations. R. Hanson will find out the next planning date and try to determine their expectations. They are looking to grow the show and would like to find a way to get 3-6 big name pilots to attend; they would also appreciate assistance with finding an industry sponsor. The President stated AMA can’t guarantee anything but would be willing to do some outreach to the industry to determine the interest. Hanson will investigate trip packages and the Museum and Marketing Departments will look at the available resources to help the group.
ADJOURNMENT: The meeting adjourned at 5:15 p.m.
Next Meeting: January 23-24, 2010 Muncie, IN