POTOMAC VALLEY SWIMMING
BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING
Attendance -- Jim Garner, Chair; John Hirschmann, Bill Marlin, Don Riedlinger, Bill Stephens, Ron Whalen, and Greg York. Non-voting Board Members: John Ertter, Linda Klopfenstein and Boots Hall. Guests: Ward Foley and Paris Jacobs,
Call to Order -- The meeting was called to order at approximately 6:55 pm, by the General Chair, Jim Garner.
Jim had provided the Board with a proposed agenda prior to the meeting and had incorporated additional items into the agenda as a result of input from the Board.
Approval of Minutes -- A motion was made and passed to approve the minutes of March 2, 2005 Board of Directors minutes as circulated. The Board was advised the changes Art Lopez subsequently requested be made to minutes of the January Board meeting were adopted and posted.
General Chairman Items --
Swimposium -- Paris Jacobs gave a report on the status of preparations for the Swimposium. It had previously been agreed that it would be held October 2, 2005 at various George Mason University facilities.
Paris reported that planning for 4 tracks was nearing completion. They were: Business Management to be lead by Ira Klein, Officials by Pat Lunsford, ASCA Coaching Level II by Guy Edson and ASCA Coaching Level III by John Leonard. Two additional tracks for swimmers and parents were being developed. Possible participants for the later category were discussed.
Since the plans have now grown from 4 planned tracks to 6 and will need to be in two different locations, Paris advised the Board that she has asked Ward Foley to help her with the second site - particularly on the day of the Swimposium.
Paris also provided the Board with a itemized list of anticipated expenses that totaled almost $20,000. She indicated she thought this reflected most, but not all expenses likely to be incurred. Some additional costs were identified at the meeting. Potential sponsors for the meet were also identified, including support from USA Swimming and sponsors who would provide product for use at the Swimposium.
The Board indicated that it thought some security should be arranged for. It also concurred in arranging for a social with light refreshments when the formal program was over about 5pm.
The Board discussed arrangements for signing up for the Swimposium and to what groups it should be initially marketed. The Board was told that VSI was conducting a Business Management class a week prior - [subsequently it was learned they are having a full Swimposium program on that weekend.] The MD LSC has also informally expressed interest in being able to attend.
The Board discussed how invitations should be extended and who should get first priority to attend. It was agreed that members of PVS should have an opportunity to sign-up to attend before opening it up to non-PVS members, including those who are members of other LSC's.
It was agreed that it was desirable to sign up people well in advance and to charge a lower fee to those who sign up earlier. It was agreed that until approximately July 1, only PVS members may sign up and they would be charged $20 per person. After that date, it would be opened up to attendees from other LSC's and the charge would also increase to $25. After September 1, it would go to $35. There was discussion if spaces were still available, would we accept people at the door. There was concern that they would not be included in the meal count and therefore we would not be able to offer them a meal.
The possibility of requiring each club to pay for two slots was discussed - one would be for the coaches track and other for the officials track - it could be implemented by raising the 2005-06 club dues from $100 to $140 and making it part of club dues for one year.
The possibility of holding back slots for PVS members and clubs until August 1 was raised and then releasing them if they are not taken was also proposed. Others urged that we not be so cautious - that our experience in 1999 was that is was incorrectly assumed that demand would be much greater than it was and that as result of being overly cautions, there was insufficient demand and it had to be cancelled. Also, it will hard to publicize and sell spaces in August when most people are gone.
It was agreed that Bill Stephens would write a letter promoting the Swimposium and explaining how the process with the registration process will work.
It was agreed it would be OK for their to be exhibitors invited, however it was noted this would have to be coordinated/cleared with GMU and that a fee might have to be paid to GMU.
The possibility of recognizing our Age Group Swimmers of the year at this occasion rather than at the PVS SC Championships in March (as has been done in recent years) was also raised.
It was agreed publicity should go out as soon as possible to all to encourage the widest possible participation. Hirschmann indicated he would post something on the website to alert people as well as put such an announcement into Flash Mail.
Age Group Chairman Conference in Colorado Springs -- Greg York advised that he will not be able to attend the Age Group Chairman's Conference in Colorado Springs, April 22-24. Bill Marlin as Senior Coach Representative to the Board indicated he would be able to attend and Board concurred in this substitution.
Nominating Committee -- Linda Klopfenstein made a report on behalf of the Nominating Committee. She reported that they were nominating the following three people for second terms on the Board of Directors - Jim Garner, General Chairman; Don Riedlinger, Senior Chairman and John Hirschmann, Treasurer. [The Athlete representative and the Coach representative to the Board are elected separately by the athletes and coaches, respectively.]
Linda also reported that they were nominating Boots Hall and Steed Edwards to the Board of Review. Two current incumbents - Kerry Ellett and Bill Stephens -- cannot succeed themselves - having served at least two full terms. It was confirmed subsequent to the meeting that Ward Foley will run for a second term and he was nominated.
At large House of Delegates Representatives -- Jim Garner proposed the following names to be at large House of Delegate representatives - Thirl Crudup, Ward Foley, Linda Klopfenstein, David Mengering, Jim Thompson, Don Smith, Boots Hall, John Ertter, Tim Husson and Steed Edwards. The Board concurred in their selection. [Note: Thirl Crudup and Don Smith subsequently declined appointments and Kerry Ellett and Riley Eaton received at-large apointments.}
HOD Meeting Date -- It was confirmed that the annual PVS House of Delegates Meeting would be Monday, May 23, 2005 at River Falls. The formal business meeting would start at 7:30pm. As discussed by the Board last month, it was agreed that a light meal and refreshments would be provided starting at 6:30 pm. It was felt this would serve as an opportunity for people to meet socially prior to the meeting and serve as a small thank you to those who volunteer their services. Greg York has volunteered his services to make arrangements for the hospitality.
Associate Clubs -- The status of the 4 associate clubs (summer leagues) who have historically joined PVS was reviewed - including whether they are still paying their annual dues of $100 and are thus entitled to a vote at the House of Delegates meeting. Questions were raised whether the Registrar was sending them notices reminding them of the need to do so. It was agreed that designated PVS Board members would also attempt to contact them.
Participation in Eastern Zone Spring Meeting -- The Board reviewed who from PVS would be attending the spring Eastern Zone meeting to be held near the Newark Airport on Saturday, May 7. The following eight participants from PVS were identified: Garner, Stephens, Riedlinger, Hirschmann, York, Marlin, Klopfenstein, and Foley. Klopfenstein agreed to make arrangements with the hotel and New Jersey Swimming for our attendance. Possible car pooling was discussed so that no more than 3-4 cars will probably be needed. It was agreed PVS will reimburse participants for one night's hotel lodging (based on double occupancy whenever possible) and for those driving, tolls and mileage (subsequently set at $.14/mile for gas) (The average driving distance from Washington to the hotel is 220-230 miles.). PVS will have a LSC dinner Friday night after its arrival.
Linda K said she would also start to make arrangements for PVS's participation in the September 2005 United States Aquatic Convention when that information became available.
Eastern Zone Spring Short Course Meet Report -- Breanne Smith was not able to be present to give a report. However, Paris Jacobs who was an assistant coach did give a brief report to the Board and advised that Breanne would be submitting a formal written report to the Board. She complimented Breanne and Mark Faherty for doing a great job of leading the team as Head Coaches. She noted that Breanne had concluded that it was probably not wise to have the same person serve as both coach and team coordinator - it would probably be wise to have different people do each job at future meets.
Breanne suggested if the meet were held again at GCIT, PVS attempt to select a different hotel to use. She briefed the Board on some problems a few of our athletes allegedly had at the hotel and how the situation was handled. Also, vans had to be rented to avoid problems with the maximum number of hours that the bus drivers can drive per day. It was suggested that this be documented for use by future zone team coordinators.
Our swimmers received 4 DQ's at the meet - most felt that it was important that our officials be encouraged to not be lenient with our age group swimmers - particularly at our championship level meets. It was stated that the primary responsibility for having our swimmers prepared for a high level competition should be placed on their coaches, not the officials.
It was noted that our Zone team was less well outfitted than most other LSC's. It was reported PVS had made a conscious decision to reduce its level of outfitting in order to get the athletes to focus more on competing and swimming fast and less on participating in a "fashion show." It was stated the Zone had reached a consensus to reduce team outfitting a few years ago - but apparently many LSC's in the zone had not adopted such a practice. It was suggested that some adjustment toward a little more outfitting by PVS in future might be appropriate.
Greg advised the Board that based on preliminary financial information from Breanne, it appears that given the amount paid by the swimmers and expected expenses, little, if any of the PVS subsidy of $15,000 would be needed. The Board discussed how to handle this situation - given that last spring a considerable saving to PVS was incurred do to an unexpected very substantial savings on hotel costs.
Most felt that unexpected lower net cost should be rebated to those who paid the registration fees. It was estimated the amount would be about $175.
It was pointed out that this would put a substantial burden on John Ertter as Controller as it would require setting up about 90 new payee accounts - since the information would have be recorded in PVS's computerized accounting records, it would not be practical to ask somebody else to do it.
A motion was made to rebate $175 to each person initially paying a registration fee. Hirschmann offered an amendment (which was accepted) to not finalize the amount until PVS was comfortable all receipts and expenditures had been identified and then calculate the amount to be rebated so that the PVS subsidy would be $15,000. The Board approved this modified motion. [Subsequent to the Board meeting, additional lodging/catering costs were identified and paid - as result the rebate that would be paid per swimmer would decline to about $58. The Board was advised that in light of this substantially lower amount and the considerable administrative process involved - that it was proposed that the rebate not be paid.]
Athlete Representatives -- No representatives were present to give a report.
Eastern Zone Long Course Meet Participation -- Chris Houtt attended part of the Board meeting in order to discuss and present to the Board a petition that had been signed by 26 coaches. It pertained to the eligibility requirements for PVS athletes to attend this summer's Eastern Zone LC meet in Buffalo. The petition reads as follows:
"Eastern Zone Long Course Meet - Tweaking of PVS Policy - PVS Zone Team: No change from the approved LC plans and the BOD's acceptance of the plan except what is stated below.
Other Swimmers who have achieved the Qualifying Standard will be: [sic] allowed to enter, attend, and participate at their own expense. They are responsible for their own: 1 Transportation, 2. Hotel, 3. Food, 4. Suit, 5. Cap. These swimmers are not eligible for any relay competition."
Chris explained to the Board that many coaches had objections to excluding from the team athletes who were not one of the fastest 3 swimmers in an event. He asked why PVS was putting restrictions on who could go that the Zone was not requiring. He encouraged PVS to look at it from the "athlete's point of view." He noted that in the past PVS had placed a restriction whether the 2nd fastest 15-18 year old swimmer could go to Zones and then dropped it.
Various members of the Board pointed out that the recommendation had come from the Competition Committee and therefore any reconsideration should be initiated there. The matter has been under discussion there for several years and the specific proposal had been discussed at the September 2004 Competition Committee meeting, notice given at the special November meeting and it was then discussed and voted upon at the January meeting. It was observed that some who signed the petition had originally voted for and/or spoken in favor of the proposal now in effect.
The Board and Competition had received reports from last summer's meet about low team morale, our swimmers not having as much fun as swimmers from other LSC's, which was attributed to parents dumping kids at the meet and then leaving, not being there for the duration of the meet, problems filling relays by not knowing who would be there and when. The Board indicated that the need for additional PVS's financial resources was not what motivated its decision. They also expressed the view we should be doing what we feel Is best for the most athletes in the LSC, not necessarily each individual athlete.
Greg indicated that as Age Group Chair he had brought forth what the Competition Committee had wanted and what was in their judgment best for the LSC.
There was also concern expressed about having two classes of athletes from PVS at the meet, who would coach them if they were not part of the travel team, It was felt that what had been adopted in January was judged to be what was best for PVS as a team, not necessarily each individual athlete.
Treasurer's Report/Finance Division -- Financial results for the periods ending February 28, 2005 and March 31, 2005 had been provided to the Board prior to the meeting. PVS's current assets on hand as of March 31, 2005 were $605,806 including $4,476 in the Dave Davis fund. The Board raised no questions regarding these reports.
The Board had also been sent the proposed FY 2006 PVS for their review prior to the meeting. It included the major assumptions that had been made in preparing the budget and any significant activity for which funding has been increased or decreased.
Hirschmann reported that PVS's financial health continues to be very strong due to program growth, not expending some funded initiatives, and John Ertter's excellent oversight of our finances. He reported that PVS now expects a surplus for the current year (FY 2005) will be approximately $107.000, even though we planned on a small deficit ($1959) when the budget was adopted. (Several revisions made in expectations for FY 2005 resulted in the budget being submitted to the House reflecting a smaller expected FY 05 surplus of about $84,000.)
The budget being proposed for FY 06 also reflects a small deficit of $2353. Several changes have been made in an effort to make the budget more realistic. This included assuming membership growth after the budget is prepared based on historical experience, and excluding several programs that while requested, have not been utilized for several years.
The key assumptions in the budget as presented to the Board for their consideration was as follows:
The Board was given an opportunity to both ask questions about the budget and to propose revisions to it.
The Board discussed whether to return some of this year's surplus to our member in the form of a rebate. One possibility proposed was to return a percentage (e.g., 50%) of the actual surplus after the end of the fiscal year to the member clubs based on the number of athletes they had registered. The Board discussed this alternative and was concerned that in many situations, the funds would not get back to athletes or their families - in some cases involving colleges or governmental units - it might not get back to the swimming program at all.
Concern was also expressed that some new initiatives and funding increases were being put into the budget before specific plans to utilize the funds had been developed. The view was expressed that it was therefore premature to include some items in the budget. Others noted while specifics were lacking, these activities needed to be started before FY07. It was also emphasized that including an item in the budget does mean the funds will be spent - the Board will still have an opportunity to review any plans for specific use of funds that reflect a new initiative.
The Board questioned whether the athlete membership estimates were too optimistic since the very large growth this year could well reflect a post Olympic year surge that might not be sustainable - therefore it voted to base the FY 2006 athlete registration number on actual FY 2005 registrations thru March and not assume further growth. (The membership growth has been concentrated in the younger age brackets.)
As a result of the discussion of the Swimposium budget that had occurred earlier in the meeting, it was proposed to increase the PVS subsidy to this gathering from $10,000 to $20,000. While expenses are expected to exceed $20,000, registration fees are expected to offset a portion of this amount. The Board was also anxious to keep the registration fee modest to encourage broad participation and to provide its members with programs in support of their membership.
The budget as proposed had provided for an additional $3000 for Officials Support - a portion of this could be used to provide travel assistance to officials going to National Championships meets (perhaps limited to their first trip) in order to encourage them to gain this experience and also to help offset the large expenses they incur volunteering to perform this function. The Board proposed that in lieu of this, PVS support all its officials by providing a benefit to all its volunteer officials by paying their USA Swimming registration fee - it had already been proposed as part of the budget that PVS not charge a registration fee (previously $5) to its officials and coaches - since they are in the same membership category at USA Swimming. The proposal was to increase support to PVS officials to $15,000 as increased expense - for budget and financial presentation this in now reflected as a reduction in revenue.
The LSC subsidy for the LC Zone team (both in FY05 and FY06) was increased to $15,000, in support of a request from Competition and the fact the PVS's participation in the LC meet will now also be on a team basis.
The amount budgeted for the USA Swimming Junior Championships was reduced from $7500 to $3750 on the basis that no more than 15 PVS athletes were expected to attend - given the faster time standards than in the past and the late date of the meet.
Stephens verified with the Board the membership fees that would be charged by PVS for the 2006 registration year.
A motion was made, seconded and to adopt the budget as amended. The motion passed with one dissenting vote (Riedlinger.) Ertter subsequently revised the budget to reflect these changes and it was sent to the Board for their review prior to being sent to the House prior the House of Delegates meeting.
The budget as adopted and submitted to the House for their consideration reflects an expected deficit of $20,845 for FY 2006.
Stephens also discussed that he will be exploring Office space for PVS. Several members asked him to better define the need since most functions now appear to be taking place electronically and the physical necessity of an Office is less required.
Operations Division -- No items from the Operations Division were discussed.
Senior Division --Transfer Athlete Funding USA-S meet to the U.S. Paralympics Meet - The issue of whether to transfer funding that had been approved to fund travel to the USA Swimming Disability Championships on June 9-11 to the USA Paralympic Championships on July 15-17 was discussed. One difference is that the cognitive disabled would not be included in the IPC meet. It was discussed at the March 2nd PVS Board meeting but action was tabled due to lack of information as to why one meet was canceled and the new one placed on calendar. Don Riedlinger read an explanation that had been provided by USA Swimming for the reason for the and provided some additional explanation. The Board discussed the matter in some detail. It was pointed out this meet was likely to attract the same athletes as would have attended the USA Swimming Disability Championships. It was noted that the same could be said about the NCSA Junior Championships, which replaced the meet formerly conducted by USA Swimming and that PVS was not paying travel assistance to the former meet. All present agreed they wanted to support PVS's athletes participation in the meet. However, some were concerned about making an exception to the PVS practice of only funding for travel assistance to meets sponsored by USA Swimming. It was noted that the Board had discussed considering grant applications in lieu of providing travel assistance at the prior Board meeting. It observed the Board has approved grants in the past when special circumstances have warranted.
A motion was made to transfer the funding approved for travel assistance to the USA Swimming Disability Championships to the USA Paralympic Championships was made and seconded. The motion failed on a 3-3 vote. Riedlinger, Stephens and Whalen voted in favor. Hirschmann, Marlin and York voted against. A motion was then made and passed to publicize to those likely to eligible that they could apply for a grant in lieu of their club receiving travel assistance.
Age Group Planning - Items of interest to age group planning were discussed under PVS participation at the USAS Conference, Paris's report on the SC Zone Team and Chris Huott's petition related to the LC Zone Team.
Administrative Division -- There was no report from the Administrative Division.
Strategic Planning -- There was no report from Strategic Planning
Coaches Representative -- Material pertaining to seeking nominations for the PVS Age Group Coach of the Year will be posted shortly to the PVS website.
Old Business -- There was no old business.
New Business -- Bill Stephens asked for Board support to pay for repairs to the scoreboard at Oak Marr. He indicated that some modules were not operating properly and Don Smith and PVS had provided this type of assistance in the past. Any expense incurred would be paid for as a credit against a future pool rental at Oak Marr. It was pointed out that PVS is longer renting Oak Marr for meets it sponsors and that thus there would be no rental costs to offset. Also, despite several requests to do so, they have not chosen to rent to PVS for any PVS sponsored meets, including a request to rent for PVS 14/U Age Group Championship this summer when GMU was not going to be available.
Next Meeting -- No date was set for the next meeting of the Board.
Adjournment -- The meeting adjourned at approximately 10:35pm.