BMW MOA TOWN MEETING
Current & Incoming Board Members in Attendance: Deb Lower, Jeff Dean, Mike White, Betsy Dow, George Glascock, Susanna Parkhouse, Pam Dempster, Paul Glaves, Rob Lentini
Others in Attendance:
Financial Results/1997 Budget - Mike White
Mike distributed copies of the results of the auditors' report and the 1997 Budget and noted additional copies would be available at the Board meeting. Changes to the Budget: News Print Costs reduced by $3,066; Re-allocation of Association Program & Training expense to March & July; Taxes & Fees increased by $24,210; Print/Mail Ballots expenses, $3,066 added to April expense, $13,807 added to May expense; Income Tax reduced by $8,463.
Mike noted the increase in Taxes & Fees is the proposed audited total of Missouri Sales & Use Tax due for 1991-1996. BMW MOA is working with the auditors to reduce this figure.
Members Comments/Issues -
Cliff Smith thanked Paul Glaves for the Tech articles in the Owners News and thanked the Board for allowing an extra copy of the Owners News to be mailed to him as he uses it to recruit new members.
Paul Glaves inquired if the Board had received input from members regarding a mid-week versus weekend National. George Glascock reported the results of an informal poll he took among rally attendees and noted 95% preferred the mid-week date. Dick Hawtau noted a mid-week rally demands less travel time. Keith Dempster stated that one purpose of the National is to recruit new members and that the influx of rally attendees traditionally takes place on Friday, he noted that attendance of 3000 was down from previous years. Other members noted that Keith's number was based on the first day's attendance. Norm Grills noted that a mid-week rally can allow BMW MOA to more easily obtain a rally site and hotel rates at lower costs and allow rally attendees more opportunity to tour the area before and after the rally. Dick Hawtau stated rally sites and dates should be based on the concentration of members as to distance that must be traveled for the majority of members to attend the rally. George Glascock noted that this rally date was an experiment on this Board's part to give future Boards a chance to evaluate the feasibility of a mid-week rally. Deb Lower noted that a mid-week rally gives younger riders and others with short vacation times a better chance to attend the rally. One member noted that the rally should be viewed from a business perspective and that a weekend rally would be more profitable. Pam Dempster noted that food vendors and commercial vendors are displeased with a midi-week rally date and while the rally isn't for the vendors, the vendors attendance at the rally benefits the members. Ray Monroe noted that the commercial vendors is attendance increased this year with more vendors participating than at either Morganton, NC or Durango, CO. Matt Parkhouse noted that if food vendors are in demand, BMW MOA could recruit fire department, boy scout troops, and other organizations in the immediate rally area to become food vendors thereby supporting local charities fund-raising efforts and providing adequate food vendors to rally attendees. Paul Glaves reminded everyone to consider the rally location when determining the rally dates and to remember variables such as weather and a non-centralized location could impact attendance. Norm Grills suggested looking at the rally site demographics. Matt Parkhouse inquired if the members were surveyed for input. Deb Lower noted that she and Lynn Monro conducted a survey 15 years ago with an 18% membership response. Deb added that the results of that survey are outdated.
Dick Hawtau suggested using the Internet for a membership survey. Deb Lower responded that the next Board would have to deal with this issue. Matt Parkhouse noted that 75% of the country isn't on the Internet at this time. Cliff Smith suggested putting a blurb on the election ballot allowing members to vote for mid-week or weekend rally dates. Jeff Dean questioned the method used to query membership without bias in order to get an accurate response. Paul Glaves noted that most professional marketing researchers rely on phone surveys for the greatest accuracy. Jeff Dean announced that Paul Glaves (incoming Board member) and Jeff Dunkle (incoming Treasurer) have agreed to serve on a Strategic Planning Committee which would address this issue among other issues.
Norm deGroot stated that he's not convinced marketing research would be necessary and said Board communication with the members is more important. He also stated that the Board shouldn't answer to Internet lists of complaints. Norm suggested the President's column in the Owners News be revived and the president address 3-4 issues to elicit member response. Norm expressed frustration with the "crap" and tone of BMW MOA and expressed hope that the incoming Board will set the tone with their leadership. He noted that BMW MOA will need to deal with the expansion of the Internet in coming years.
George Glascock stated that one of the best methods of getting members to respond is to have the Board communicate with the membership. He urged the incoming Board to communicate with the members. George also noted that an opportunity is being lost by Internet users, instead of sending information out that isn't based on any facts, he urges Internet users to take time to get the facts and offer solutions to problems instead of just offering criticism.
Jeff Dean commended George Glascock for his work on rally site selections. Jeff also suggested having the BMW MOA by-laws posted on the MOA Web page, as well as capability of joining or renewing memberships.
One person suggested Board support of local Charter club development and expansion by utilization of dealerships in the club's area.
Keith Dempster recommended using the Owners News as a forum, removing censorship guidelines. Mike White stated no restrictions are on Board members to communicate with the membership. Jeff Dean noted that the current Board's offer to put together a Board newsletter was rejected by Rober Beeman. Keith Dempster stated that the membership used the Owners News as a "steam valve" in the past but current Board guidelines prevent this. Jeff Dean noted that the Board guidelines requested personal attacks of Board members, staff or individual members be eliminated but that issues were never to be censored. George Glascock noted that the issue of Board communication to membership was the reason that Robert Beeman resurrected "One Voice". Paul Glaves noted that historically, the Owners News was the vehicle used by the Board to communicate with the members and that until something better comes along, the Board should use thei methif ensuring all members hear from the Board, not just the Ambassadors, Chartered Clubs and Internet users. George Glascock reminded members of the cost publishing in the Owners News. Paul Glaves suggested the Board look at giving "something up" in the Owners news so that space is available for communication to the members.
George Glascock noted that he objects to by-law revisions that aren't voted upon by the entire membership. The Board noted that the town meeting had run overtime, infringing on the Ambassadors meeting and that the by-laws issue would be discussed at the Board Meeting.
Deb Lower thanked Beth Lindeberg, Rally chair, for all the work done for this rally and adjourned the meeting.
Respectfully submitted by
Betsy Dow, Secretary