1014 EC Minutes
Executive Council Meeting
October 11, 2014
Note: District V VP Kris Dixon and District VIII VP Mark Johnston were not in attendance.
1. Opening Business
b. Additions to the agenda: New term for Chief Financial Officer (CFO) – NEW BUSINESS, item g.
2. Consent Agenda
It was moved, seconded and approved by acclamation to approve the Consent Agenda. Consent Agenda items: Approval of July 19, 2014 Executive Council meeting minutes; mail vote of Aug. 21 re award for Silent Electric Flyers; mail vote of Aug. 28 re ED Contract Approval; mail vote of Sept. 10 re: AMA Expo Contract; and mail vote of Sept. 22 re: Youth Leadership Award.
3. President’s Report
• Travel review: Maker Faire in Detroit MI (met with Dale Dougherty, CEO of Maker Movement); EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh WI (spoke at a Young Eagles meeting; on behalf of the Academy accepted the 2014 Young Eagles Horizon Award; and attended the full scale/model airshow); attended the IRCHA Jamboree in Muncie; with H. Mausolf assisted in National Aviation Day in NC (had discussion with Phil Woodruff, the President of the First Flight Society); attended an Aerotow event in DE; represented AMA along with E. Williams and J. Hager at funeral for Joe Beshar; with A. Argenio, D. Mathewson, G. Fitch, T. Stillman and R. Hanson represented AMA at the Horizon Air Meet in ME; supported District IX VP J. Tiller at Warbirds Over the Rockies and attended the District VIII Memorial Fun Fly/Presentation of HOF Award to Jim Rice in TX.
• Had discussion with K. Dodd regarding the Model Aeronautic Association of Australia (MAAA) dealing with another organization. MAAA noted they supported and sent pilots to the IMAC world championship event held at Muncie.
• Continuing discussion with the F3A subcommittee chairman, the FAI President and others regarding the FAI nominated Judges list for F3A and F3P; this must be filed with the FAI office by November 15, 2014.
• 2015 Executive Council meeting dates. Strategic Planning development will take place during the May, July and October meetings so Council members should plan for at least two days of meeting.
It was moved, seconded and approved by acclamation to approve the 2015 Executive Council meeting dates as follows: January 11, 2015, Ontario CA (8 a.m. – 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. till concluded); May 1-2, 2015, Muncie IN; July 18-19, 2015, Muncie IN and October 30-31, 2015, Muncie IN. The General Membership Meeting will be held Thursday May 14 during the Joe Nall. The President, Executive Director and designees will report at the meeting; if any other Council members wish to attend they will do so at their district expense.
At this time the President presented Felix Gora an Appreciation Award for his 25 years of service to the Academy.
4. Executive Vice President's Report
• Travel review: Attended the Jim Wallen Memorial Vintage Fun Fly. On behalf of J. Tiller, presented Jim Wallens Distinguished Service Award to his wife Susan Wallen. The family was tremendously appreciative. Attended IRCHA, where it was evident there is an abundance of youth involved in the event; attended the Horizon Air Meet in Sanford, ME; and attended the NEAT Fair in NY with E. Williams and R. Condon. The NEAT Fair celebrated their 15th anniversary this year. A District II meeting was held during the event; comments during the meeting recommended AMA stand fast with the FAA and take legal recourse if necessary. AMA member and former Tuskegee Airman George Watson was in attendance; Williams presented a District Service award to Mr. Watson. Following the event G. Fitch received 2 booklets Mr. Watson wrote regarding his experiences with the Tuskegee Airmen. These items will be donated to the AMA Museum.
• Attended the Budget Committee conference call with K. Sessions, V. Barkdull, D. Mathewson, R. Miller and B. Brown.
• Met with B. Pritchett and his staff concerning education programs; new programs are being developed focusing on adult members.
• Had a Marketing meeting; more will be discussed later in this meeting.
5. Chief Financial Officer's Report
• The budget had been sent to everyone for review; K. Sessions thanked D. Mathewson and Executive Staff for their work.
• The Controller is using her own spreadsheet which contains hyper-links explaining why some items had been combined
• Costs are increasing, which puts challenges on the budget. (Examples include liability insurance for membership, cost of labor which is inflationary, and medical insurance) • The ED reported that the two additional positions had been factored into the budget.
• A Council member noted that in the past the budget had been broken down by department. This allowed a year-to-year comparison of how well a department performed. The ED noted the spreadsheet used by the former Controller was not available. The ED is well aware of how each department is performing. The final approved budget sent to Council will include a breakdown of salaries per department.
• The amount funded at the last meeting for the SUAS program was an unbudgeted expense, however, after creating this budget the ED noted a good portion of that had been incorporated into this year’s operating budget (such as salary for the new position and website work). What is not included is anticipated travel and marketing initiatives.
• There was a brief discussion on increasing district budgets due to increased costs. The ED explained that there is a gross amount allocated to that line item. (Individual district budgets are determined by a formula.) It is possible a re-allocation of funds could produce the same results. The CFO noted there may be more leeway in the budgets in 2016.
MOTION I: It was moved by G. Fitch (EVP) and seconded by R. Cameron (VI) to approve the 2015 Budget as presented.
MOTION passed: 10-Y; 1-N (X)
Membership Dues – During the July meeting the CFO asked Council members to poll their district membership concerning a dues increase. The last time dues were increased was in 2003, before that it was 1997. In 1997 dues were $48, gas was $1.26/gallon, the average new home was $176,000 and the average income was $37,000. When the dues increased in 2003 AMA lost 5k members. Gas was $1.76/gallon, average new home was $46,000 and the average income was $45,000. During 2002-2003 there was the internet bubble and the subsequent crash; a lot of extra income that people had disappeared. The CFO is of the opinion that the loss of those 5k members was due to the economy. Throughout the next part of that decade through 2010 we continued to lose members; also during that time there was the housing bubble and huge unemployment. During that period we lost a total of 34k members. From 2010 to today, not only have we recouped those 34k members, we hit an all-time high record for the number of members. The economy is strong, the membership is at an all-time high, and a lot of people see a huge value in what AMA has to offer. When you take inflation into account at today’s dollar, dues should be $73.73; it was recommended to set the dues at $75/year. AMA is spending more money fighting the government, has been more active in legislation and then there is the inflationary aspect; an increase is justifiable. There was no consensus on how to accomplish this increase; one lump increase vs a progression over several years, vs increase on a 4-5 year cycle.
SC Dues Discount – Sessions pointed out that the senior citizen discount impacts the budget by 400k/year and this sector continues to grow every year. The impact on revenue by offering the discount is $425k for this year; by 2018 the impact will be over 500k if nothing changes. Suggestions included grandfathering the current Senior Citizens (their dues would increase but they would still receive the $10 discount); offering a 10% discount; and increasing the age when a person becomes eligible for the discount.
If the Council will entertain the possibility of a dues increase, there needs to be an official announcement from AMA noting the rationale behind the decision. The CFO was charged with developing and presenting a concrete proposal at the January 2015 meeting; Council should continue to canvas their district membership relative to a dues increase and provide feedback to K. Sessions before the next meeting.
6. Executive Director’s Report
HQ is currently in a three-month trial period as the plans fulfillment center for the National Free Flight Society (NFFS). The NFFS takes the orders and collects the money, HQ fills the order and makes a profit.
US Bank Card Affinity Program – this contract expires in November 2014 and HQ is looking into new affinity partners.
Goldberg Award – once the results are adopted by Council at this meeting, the District VPs were instructed they could notify the winners. The ED reported that only four of the thirteen Council members voted. If the District VP is unable to participate in the process they should allocate that responsibility to an AVP or other district member. HQ would like to see more involvement from Council in this award. The winners were: 1st-Tom Scott (III), 2nd-Joe Jopling (VIII), 3rd-James Taylor (IV), 4th-John Hoover (VII) and 5th-Rich Nichols (X).
It was moved, seconded, and approved by acclamation to accept the results for the Goldberg Award recipients.
2014 Final Membership Year Numbers – referencing paid members: overall percentage up about 2.5%; renewals up 1%; new members (which were down in 2013) were up 11.8%. Overall membership including youth up 106.5% which gave us a total 2014 membership year number of 175,865 members. It is important to note that between 2002 and 2009 AMA lost 52.5% of our youth members and we have now recovered all those members and increased that number significantly. 2015 renewals are coming in strong at this point. HQ is getting a significant numbers of renewals returned by mail this year as opposed to on-line; they believe part of the reason they are receiving so many by mail is the recent rash of security breaches of big-box stores and people are afraid to use their credit cards. The goal is to get all renewals processed and cards sent out in 3-4 days during this peak renewal period.
The ED reviewed some membership demographics: at the end of 2013 the average age of our members was in the 59-60 range (including youth); as of October the average age of just adult members is down to 58.3 but when youth are factored in the average age is reduced to 47.4. This number is a bit skewed because we have half again the number of youth members as we did in 2013. In the 2014 membership year the average age of new members is 50.3, the average age including youth is 37.7. This shows that AMA is beginning to reach a demographic that is somewhat younger than had been reached in the past.
Aero News Network – This is an online journal, managed by a gentleman named Jim Campbell. AMA has been approached about becoming part of a coalition of aviation-oriented organizations that will be part of a daily news program called The Airborne Partnership Initiative. They would be a content distribution partner with daily online shows. AMA’s contributions could be as little as “Tip of the Day” if we have a story coming up, all the way up to video presentations. There will be up to 30 different aviation associations involved in the coalition. It is syndicated to 100 outlets right now. It will be headed up by an advisory board which is headed up by Phil Boyer (former President of AOPA). It will be an excellent networking opportunity for the AMA to collaborate with virtually every other major aviation oriented organization in the country.
Digital Model Aviation – As of October 2 there are 23,492 members taking advantage of the digital version of Model Aviation; 5,350 have kept the print copy and chose to receive the digital version as well; and 18,142 have elected to receive the digital version over the print version. The digital version of Model Aviation is doing better than projected and exceeded all expectations. R. Kurek and the Publications department have done a great job. The digital version of Park Pilot magazine is out in beta mode; it will eventually become a subscription feature as well.
2014 Donations – Donations from January 1-October 5, 2014 are up over 100%; the number of donors is up 100%. In 2013 during that time period there were 1,111 donors; same time period in 2014 there were 2,042 donors; the actual financial impact of that result was up 100%. The peak period for donations happens September 15 through the end of the year.
The ED stated if Council is going to attend the Expo and would like a room at the Doubletree, they should contact Lora Knowlton; for a room at the Ayers, contact Linda Rice. VPs should contact E. Dobbs at Headquarters and inform her of their needs for Expo access badges.
A question came up about the need for Frequency Coordinators (FC). VPs were asked to poll their Frequency Coordinators to see how often they are contacted by members. If they are being contacted, VPs should get an idea of what the contacts are about (72 MHz issues, 2.4 issues, etc.). There will be a follow-up at the January meeting on the rolls of Frequency Coordinators and what to do going forward. Every district Frequency Coordinator had an ICOM monitor and a hand-held spectrum analyzer. VPs were asked to find out where they are in the district and if they are not being used they should be returned to HQ.
International Miniature Aircraft Association – IMAA ceased operations on August 22 or 23 of this year. Headquarters is in receipt of a letter from a Mr. Russell alleging purported improprieties by the IMAA. Numerous Council members have also been contacted by IMAA members. They are looking for some transparency of the IMAA’s financial records and meeting minutes from the past several years. AMA doesn’t have a legal position to do anything; the power is vested in the IMAA membership. IMAA members are AMA members, and as such, AMA should be responsive to their members and send a letter requesting the status of the organization. Based on the response from IMAA, AMA must make a determination on whether to continue affiliation with them.
MOTION II: It was moved by E. Williams (II) and seconded by R. Cameron (VI) that HQ contact the International Miniature Aircraft Association (IMAA) via certified letter and request clarification on their current situation and their status as a Special Interest Group.
MOTION passed unanimously.
It was suggested that SIGs be required to submit a copy of their financial standings along with their renewals, possibly every couple of years. This would show if they have funds to cover their expenses and are viable for the following year. Council was cautioned against micro-managing. The Special Interest Group Committee will review and revise the SIG application/requirements; report at January EC meeting.
AMS Project – The ED reviewed the problems they’ve encountered with the migration process; HQ continues to work through those. The AMS portion of the system will be launched January 1, 2015 because it has to coincide with our fiscal year. Work continues on the enrollment process; populating the store with merchandise; setting up the images for the plans service and working through issues with membership enrollment to make sure it all works. There are 155 different scenarios that have to be implemented into the new system that revolve around Model Aviation magazine subscriptions alone. E. Baughman going to Common Place next week to finalize some of the processes. C. Budreau reported they have budgeted November and December for dedicated testing.
Mathewson reported the staff at Headquarters is obtaining some recognition from the community. Chris Savage received an award on behalf of the Muncie Business Community and Ilona Maine was nominated for the ATHENA Leadership Award which is affiliated with Women in Business Unlimited Association.
PR Firm – During a conference call Council discussed the need to engage a professional PR firm to help with our FAA issues as well as a long term strategic plan to build public relations. Kurek sent out an RFP and after evaluating the responses decided to recommend engaging a company based out of Indianapolis. The company, TACTIC, has been around since the mid-90s, but their most recent division was created in 2007. The general audience we are trying to reach is the non-modeling public and their campaign will focus on the digital side on media. The campaign will utilize digital media to create a video(s) and a strong landing page. Part of the project will be to improve our image relative to our work with the FAA. To separate drones the public is familiar with that revolve around military use, and what we do as recreational model aviation enthusiasts. They will help with pushing press releases and getting our message out, but will also help with reacting to negative press. The creation of a PR image is a part of this entire package. The first phase of this project will be research; they will be calling key stakeholders (staff, EC, members, industry representatives, etc.) to firmly understand how we view ourselves, before they can determine how best to project that message. We need the help of a firm that has the greater ability to reach the mainstream media in a measurable way. In discussions over the summer, a budget of several hundred thousand dollars was mentioned; HQ has budgeted 75k-100k for the project. This was done for was budgetary reasons, but it will be an opportunity to partner on a project and see how well it goes. If it doesn’t turn out as we hoped we’ve limited our commitment. On the other hand, if it is working well, we have an opportunity to expand the reach of the program. The timeframe for this will be about 8 months.
MOTION III: It was moved by L. Tougas (X) and seconded by R. Cameron (VI) to engage TACTIC as AMA’s PR firm.
MOTION passed unanimously.
7. NAA REPORT
• J. Gaffney reported the new chairman came on board last month; he hopes to get out to the AMA site in the future.
• NAA rebated FAI dues to the ASO’s (they covered 47K). No rebate will be received this year due to the exchange rate (NAA will actually absorb the nearly $2,000 loss).
• Gaffney apologized for not being able to attend National Model Aviation Day.
8. Committee Reports
Flying Site Assistance
T. Stillman reported he has been working at HQ for about 5 months and he appreciated everyone at Headquarters helping him get involved and understand how the departments work; that will be beneficial for him when it comes to flying site assistance. As an FYI, he is also involved in some of the competition events and the Nationals. He will attend the National Park and Recreation annual convention; this will be a key kick-off point for the plan that he put in place last year. He will renew and make new contacts with both military and Park/Recreation departments in an effort to get them on board with the program and begin a trial-process to have the Park/Rec departments create clubs/flying sites with the help of AMA HQ (without relying so much on local clubs). Stillman noted that the National Park and Rec Association has a huge following with the military. The National Parks see chartered club flying sites within parks as a positive addition to parks services; they are looking to issue new permits and to renew current permits to allow continued flying.
R. Hanson and T. Stillman are working on a process that will instruct clubs on how to deal with the 5-mile radius issue.
Two surveys have just been completed that were directed at clubs and club officers. This was to garner information on their flying sites both indoor and outdoor. (Private sites, parks, capped landfills, farmland, etc.). Received returns from over 1,100 clubs. In the future we hope to get this information from them via the AMS system. There are a number of clubs that are reluctant to provide this information for various reasons.
The following was proposed: “For an Open member with three years of consecutive AMA membership to qualify for Leader Member Status the members must be a current AMA Chartered Club or Chartered Chapter officer”. Although Council agreed with the proposal in general, they do not believe that being a club officer is a requirement for being a Leader Member. Kennedy stated the basic premise of the proposal is to encourage active club officers to become Leader Members (LM). They have already demonstrated an interest in the Academy by offering their services to a club. Kennedy would like to make more of an effort to recruit club officers to become LM. There was concern that the VP would be taken out of approval process for these individuals. Kennedy explained it would not be automatic that a club officer becomes a LM; they would still be required to complete the paperwork and be approved by the VP. Kennedy requested permission to contact individuals who have submitted an application and explain the duties and responsibilities of a LM; there was no opposition from Council on this. He was also asked to engage more club officers and promote the program. Having more LM would increase the voting base on bylaw changes and could possibly provide a better representation of the demographics. There was a brief discussion on how to handle unresponsive LM. The proposal was referred back to the LM Committee.
Council viewed a graph depicting results from our new member acquisition sources. Fitch reported we increased our budget with Google from $50/week to $100/week buying words. In February of this year AMA realized 88 new members from Google, in April 148 and in May 145. We are learning how to use social media to acquire new members and it is working. The actual cost of membership acquisition with Google is $6.25 per new member. In 2014 AMA gained 3,136 new members from this type of membership acquisition; this is an increase of over 2400 from 2013. Total new membership revenue generated in 2014 was $156,675. During the Marketing/Membership meeting there was some discussion of a group called Flite Test (they do videos); they have a world-wide following. They recently had an event in District III which M. Radcliff attended. The ED noted they did this event with a Kick Starter campaign; they are now trying to raise funds to purchase their own site via a Kick Starter campaign. They are very pro-AMA and are generating new members for us. There are new ways of developing new memberships, and they are having a positive effect on us and our bottom line.
Hobby Shop Program – in 2014 AMA signed up 39 new shops, there are currently 236 stores in the program. Fitch stated that AMA has an obligation to work with the shops, and to expect the shops to work with us. It was recommended that AVP’s visit the hobby shops in their area and thank them for being part of the program. If they are not currently in the program they should explain the benefits of belonging.
At the July meeting Council reviewed the Bylaw amendments as they would be presented to the Leader Members (Articles III, IX and XI). This was comprised of about 6-7 pages that would need to be sent and would be quite costly. Article XV deals with Bylaw Amendments, and was modified and approved by Council as well. The modification allows Bylaw amendments to be adopted by Leader Members via mail, fax or electronic ballot. After consulting with legal counsel it was decided to send Article XV to the Leader Members first via a card ballot. If the amendment to Article XV is approved, it will save HQ significant money when conducting future votes. The process to vote electronically will be explained in the mailing. The next step is to create a secure voting system that allows one vote per Leader Member. Argenio noted that the Contest Boards currently use electronic voting for rules changes.
The Museum is currently working on a number of restorations, including a 1914 Autoplan and a Royal Aircraft Factory BE2E. They completed their first educational webcast series in conjunction with Wayne Township. During a meeting in July the committee talked about what would be coming on-line, possibilities for the web site, and making some exciting changes to the Museum. They are considering what the museum has to do, in terms of bringing the museum experience to the rest of the country and our members. Volunteers have completed two new exhibit cases and the McCollough room has been busy; there were 12 events held there in September. The Museum roof repair is expected to begin this week.
They are beginning to focus on the AMA Heritage Award Program. E. Williams explained the difference between the AMA History Program and the Heritage Award Program. The History program is about documenting the histories and stories of clubs, and the biographies of members. The Heritage Award recognizes sites, organizations or businesses who have been recognized as being historically significant. The committee makes recommendations to Council, who must approve the designation. Currently there are four such designations.
It was brought to the committee’s attention that there are a number of clubs that have been in existence for close to 50 years; the committee needed to determine whether a club is considered an “organization” as it pertains to the Heritage Award. The committee will review the application and if necessary, revise it to make it more equitable for sites, organizations, clubs and businesses. Any revisions will need to be approved by Council.
9. Old Buiness
R. Hanson noted we are probably in our most complex, convoluted point that we have ever been in, in the last 6 years in terms of what is going on with the FAA and how it may or may not impact model aircraft. He is eternally optimistic that this will all shake out exactly as we expected it to; which is that model aircraft will continue to operate much like they do today.
Since the July Council meeting: The public comment period on the Interpretive Rule has ended; there were over 32,000 comments that were collected and tallied on the regulation.gov web site, and more could have been mailed, faxed and hand-delivered. In talking with EAA and others, this was a phenomenal amount of comments for a policy push. AMA has partnered well with EAA and the relationship seems to be getting better. They commented in AMA’s favor on the Interpretive Rule and submitted an extensive document. Just recently AMA returned the favor and submitted comment relating to a policy issue that deals with federally obligated airports.
Council had a conference call regarding filing a petition within the 60-day deadline (August 23rd), asking the courts to review an official action by a regulatory agency. Hanson noted that two other entities also filed petitions; a university group and an industry group. The courts stated that since they are all dealing with the same subject matter, they were going to treat it as one court issue.
Council was informed that the FAA cancelled Advisory Circular 91-57. They have been working on a new replacement advisory circular that would reconcile the differences between the old 91-57 and Section 336. Hanson was surprised that they did not have a new one in place before they cancelled 91-57. For modelers, this means there are two ways they can operate, under 336 which means you must be an AMA member, or by filing a CFR. Hanson believes we (AMA) will get to see the new AC before it is final; he expects it will be a reconciliation of AC 91-57, Section 336 and the Interpretive Rule. The new AC could go out to comment, but it is not required. The message we need to convey to our members is they should follow the AMA Safety Code.
(Note: On the Monday following this meeting the FAA rescinded their cancellation of AC 91-57.)
Hanson reported HQ was contacted to partner in a media campaign for “Know before You Fly”; a safety tutorial of how to fly SUAS safely. Nothing is definite and it is still in its’ conceptual stage; Hanson will inform Council of any progression.
There has been some dialogue about the TFR issue with Brian Troupe, who is the number two person in the office that works with the Special Operations Security Center. He has agreed to come to the AMA Expo and talk about the TFR process and possibly suggest ways we can better negotiate our position. There is also value in having the membership understand the TFR process and why model aircraft are included. There was opposition to inviting him to AMA’s premier event, stating AMA should not allow someone to promote a position that we are diametrically opposed to (TFR’s). It was recommended that HQ set up ground-rules and ask in advance what he wants to discuss; the majority of Council agreed he should attend. Hanson reported Mr. Troupe was going to explain the process and some of the misunderstandings in terms of why certain things are in the TFR. It does not change AMA’s position that we believe restricting model aircraft is unnecessary. There are some real safety and security issues why model aircraft are included. It has to do with the response if necessary and having safe airspace and a clear environment so the responders can travel safely through that airspace. Hanson thinks there is enough misunderstanding about TFR’s and what they do, that it would be beneficial to have Mr. Troupe correct any misinformation.
Travel/Entertainment Revision – Appendices III, IV
The President appointed an ad hoc committee to review the policy and make a determination on how to make it fit better into our current programming. Council received a proposed revision from Argenio; he asked them to review it and provide comment. The CFO noted that there will be no cash advances on credit cards allowed; if a situation arises where a credit card will not be accepted and up-front cash is required, the VP should contact the Controller. The revisions to the Travel/Entertainment Policy should be presented by K. Sessions, Chairman of the Audit and Investment Oversight Committee.
Argenio introduced a program he uses to take a picture of his receipt, it is then converted to a pdf file then the pdf file is automatically shared with a document on the AMA Drop Box/shared site. Each District VP would be assigned their own folder in which to store their receipts. The folders would be accessible by the assigned HQ individual(s) who could review them on a regular basis; this lowers the risk of potential misconduct. The CFO cautioned that the scanned receipts must contain some type of documentation relative to what the receipt was for and what account it is charged against. If anyone is interested in setting up one of these folders they should contact the Executive Director.
Flying Site Grant
The chairman reported that at the July meeting Council approved a motion that allowed a representative from each district to be on the committee. This would provide additional data samplings (scores) and will make it fair for all districts. The following District VP’s have not yet provided names to HQ/E. Dobbs for inclusion on the committee: I, II, IV, V, VI, VII and IX. The District VI VP reported his representative will be Gerald Miller.
Proposed revised definitions:
3.10 Class C – Unrestricted Entry
An organized get-together of modelers for fellowship, mutual interests, and/or goodwill. Events have unrestricted entry to AMA members and may be composed of special events or activities, or any combination thereof. Events may or may not restrict flying to exclusive types of aircraft and/or offer awards or formal flying competition. A description of any special event or activity and any types of aircraft restrictions as well as any special safety precautions must be included within the sanction application. HQ will communicate any suggested additional safety requirements back to the sanction application originator and the affected District Contest Coordinator. Traditional date and 100 mile area protection applies. Note – If the event restricts entry to specific group/s of AMA members it must be sanctioned as a Class CR – Restricted Entry event.
3.11 Class CR – Restricted Entry
An organized get-together of modelers for fellowship, mutual interests, and/or goodwill. Event entry is restricted to, or preference or priority is given to, a specific group/s as AMA members of a club or clubs; or to an organization affiliated with AMA; or to residents of a confirmed area, such as a city or county. Events may be composed of special events or activities, or any combination thereof. Events may or may not restrict flying to exclusive types of aircraft and/or offer awards or formal flying competition. A description of the event entry restrictions for specific groups and/or any special event or activity or exclusive aircraft types and any special safety precautions must be included within the sanction application. HQ will communicate any suggested additional safety requirements back to the sanction application originator and the affected District Contest Coordinator. Traditional date and 100 mile area protection applies.
Note – If the event does not restrict entry to specific group/s of AMA members, it must be sanctioned as a Class C – Unrestricted Entry event.
Argenio explained the proposal mirrors the current practice used by most Contest Directors and Contest Coordinators. A “Class C-Unrestricted Entry” event allows any AMA member to participate; a “Class CR-Restricted Entry” event is specifically for select groups (e.g. clubs, multi-club, chapters, etc.). Restricting the type of aircraft that can fly at the event will be allowed in both C and CR events. Traditional dates and 100 mile area protection will apply to both C and CR events. If two or more of the same type events want to be held during the same time period, the Contest Coordinator will use their best judgment to decide which will be sanctioned; they know the people in the district and know how to work out a proper solution.
MOTION IV: It was moved by A. Argenio (I) and seconded by E. Williams (II) to accept the Sanction Committee’s revised definitions for Non-Rule Book Events Section 3.10 Class C and Section 3.11 Class CR Sanctions.
MOTION passed: 110-Y; 1-Abstain (NAA)
The District VP’s should notify their Contest Coordinators of these changes.
Western Flying Site Update
When he originally ran for office, L. Tougas had a goal of establishing a western US flying site; the site would be similar to what you see at the local level. It would include a runway, pit area CL circles, and be a place where AMA events and competitions could be run. The President was concerned that free flight would not be able to operate on the site. In talking with constituents in his District, Tougas indicated that the single most important thing that resonates with them is a regional flying site. He feels it is good for the organization as a whole to pay attention to interests like this because it reinforces the value of membership. When he originally presented this idea he considered outright ownership, leasing the land or creating a partnership. He believes a partnership would be the best avenue to consider. He again presented the Woodland Davis Aeromodelers flying site, it has year-round flying capability, is close to a local airport, nearby attractions and is a local part of the community. (They have a conditional use permit). The property has been subdivided. Due to county requirements they had to increase their acreage from 46 acres to 58. They would like to purchase the land in the next twelve months. They currently have $180,000 available for purchase and there was talk of a potential benefactor (who would want to maintain some ownership stake.) Total land price would be in the neighborhood of $580,000. The use permit contains some line items that Tougas wants changed; he believes they can be negotiated.
Discussion included: Tougas thought AMA’s investment should include some improvements on the land (building/multi-purpose room, toilets and paving the runway area). He made it clear to the club that whatever amount of money the AMA invests, would have to be commensurate to the AMA’s ability to use the site. When standing in the flight box you face the west; this could make it hard for competition. The runway is the direction it is due to the prevailing winds. In discussion on cost of maintenance Tougas indicated this would be proportionate to AMA’s investment. The permanent club has an investment in wanting to keep it maintained. The AMA membership should be surveyed to identify how many would actually travel to the proposed site. Events that have been held on this site include the Scale Masters Championship and jet events; a large number of competitors attend as well as spectators. Council would like to know what the tax implications would be and the environmental impacts of installing a building, toilets and a paved runway. Argenio noted that often times when something like this is done the reaction is good; the question becomes whether the interest is sustainable. This club has a great track record for taking care of their property. This will be an asset that appreciates over the years. Tougas will do further investigation and report back to Council.
This item went to the Marketing Department for review; after consideration the ED and E. Williams did not see anything that was reflective of what Council was looking for. Williams noted that the slogan he presented in July may not be the right one but thought it essential to create something that represents what AMA stands for given the environment. Williams will try to develop something in the next month or two and present it to Council for a mail vote.
National Model Aviation Day (NMAD)
T. Jesky reported that just over $85,000 has been collected (116 clubs have sent in their money to date); this is a 10k increase over 2013. The date for NMAD 2015 will be August 15, 2015, this is just prior to National Aviation Day. There was discussion on whether to continue with Wounded Warrior Project as the benefactor or look at other candidates. The chairman noted that it takes about three years for these type of events to take root and establish themselves. The committee was charged with investigating other organizations (include M. Radcliff and L. Tougas in their discussion). Suggestions included Make-A-Wish, Habitat for Humanity and Heritage Flight (they take WWII veterans to Washington, D.C.). Gaffney remarked NMAD is a great way of getting all AMA members involved in the same thing. It was suggested the committee develop guidelines of the best practices for planning a NMAD event. A recommended charity should be presented for Council vote by the January meeting.
AMA Policy at FAA Waivered Airshows/FAA Recommendation
Last year Council passed a policy for model aircraft activities at FAA waivered air show events; that policy was implemented January 1, 2014. Hanson reported the FAA was watching during a number of airshows including the EAA airshow and the Cleveland (OH) air show. The FAA asked AMA to refine four or five areas within that policy. These included whether the CD/Air Boss should be allowed to fly during the event and set-back distances for large model aircraft. A report will be presented at the January meeting.
Large Model Aircraft Program to define Giant Scale
H. Mausolf reported that with the dissolution of IMAA the definition of Giant Scale disappears as well. He is proposing that Council adopt changes to the Contest Rules and Large Model Aircraft Program, to define Giant Scale as it was for many years with the former IMAA. He would like to define Giant Scale to keep from mixing up aircraft at an event; having a small foamie flying with a Giant Scale (he referenced an incident at an event in Bealeton, VA). Right now AMA documents only contain a weight restriction; there is no size definition.
Concern was expressed about how this would equate to the Large Model Aircraft definition in current AMA documents since those documents have been provided to the FAA. Mausolf suggested creating a separate document that defines Giant Scale aircraft. The item was referred to the Safety Committee; a report will be given at the January meeting.
Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs)
The District II Safety Coordinator is a firm believer in these; he carries one in his vehicle and takes them to events because he thinks they are a critical life saving device. AMA owns three of them; one located in the HQ building, one in the Museum and one that is located in the Nats HQ building during the flying season for use anywhere on the site. Williams briefed Council on some statistics regarding Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA).
The intention of the proposal is that AMA endorse that clubs should consider purchasing these with appropriate certification and training for the state in which they reside. There was a brief discussion about AMA trying to get group rates for the purchase of these. L. Tougas reported he knows of someone who sells AEDs; he should be contacted about possible group rates.
It was moved, seconded, and approved by acclamation that AMA promotes awareness of Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) through AMA’s various communication channels, and AMA encourage AMA clubs to consider purchasing AEDs utilizing the following AED Guidance Statement. “AMA encourages AMA clubs to consider purchasing Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) for placement at club flying sites and events, that clubs follow all applicable Federal and state AED laws, training and certification requirements, and that they follow the AED manufacturer’s instructions for care, maintenance, service, usage, and storage. Such purchases by AMA clubs are eligible for application towards AMA Flying Site Improvement Grants. AMA encourages AMA clubs to receive certified first aid and CPR training.”
2015 Strategic Planning Meeting (Discussion only)
Deferred to January meeting.
The 2015 calendar is included in the agenda; all of the Special Interest Groups have approved these dates.
It was moved, seconded, and approved by acclamation to assign 5A Status to the 2015 AMA Nationals; Outdoor dates are July 6 – August 6, 2015. Indoor dates/venue to be determined.
New Term for Chief Financial Officer
Last year during the October meeting Keith Sessions was introduced as the committee’s recommendation for the CFO position for a one-year term (this filled out D. Holland’s previous three-year term). Council must renew Sessions in this position for another three-year term.
It was moved, seconded and approved by acclamation to approve the new three-year term for the Chief Financial Officer Keith Sessions.
No awards were requested.
January 11, 2015 Ontario CA