BUICK RACER

Car Club Question

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So, I know many of you belong to several car clubs and including the BCA, (I hope) and a BCA Chapter, do any of your other clubs pay someone to do your newsletter, website, membership data or treasurer, how about secretary or editor? I understand a National Organization almost has to pay for these services, but a local club or chapter of a National club, just looking for thoughts and comments, and if I don't get any i guess, well nobody cares even if it's your dues money? You should care, LOL!

 

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None of our local chapter members are paid for their services/time.  Sometimes it seems like that's what it would take to get someone to do the job though!

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Roberta:

I see that you are starting a dialog with the membership.

I agree with Adam's comment above. I know as the Mason-Dixon Director the statement fits. We few all wear many hats within the local organization. At one time we had nearly 75 members on the roster. Presently at about 25 members. That was because of the reluctance of the former Director to remove members for non payment of dues. We had carried some for over 3 years without a payment. Still only $10. We do send out "miss you, wish you were here" type of emails to these former members and do a phone call every so often.

  Our former long time treasurer left after an unresolved rift with the BCA office. Luckily, a member stepped forward and is doing a fine job. But trying to get a person to step up to be assistant director is an ongoing trial.

Larry

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Thanks, Adam and ,Larry for sharing their thoughts, as this is how we learn from each other, to how to do better. So any more thoughts will be appreciated, maybe we can fix it but if we can't maybe learn from others to make it better for all!.

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2 hours ago, BUICK RACER said:

do any of your other clubs pay someone to do your newsletter, website, membership data or treasurer, how about secretary or editor?

 

Roberta,

To answer your question regard other Cubs, I belong to a local Car Club here in Ontario that was founded in 1954. For it's early start a designated member made a news letter that was produced (on a Gestetner machine) and sent out about every two months with a budget from the treasury mostly for expenses and not being paid to do it.

With the Club's objective to own and operate a Transportation Museum, eventually things evolved that we needed a Board of Directors (unpaid), a Curator (paid) and during summer months, paid help through a Provincial assistance program.

The news letter soon became the responsibility of the Curator helping to keep members current on the many School Programs, Car activities, Special Events and on going developments of what is now over 100 acres of property with over 20 locally significant historic buildings moved to our property over the years, creating a Heritage Village besides our 25,000 square foot Museum. 

That person (Curator - non member) is paid for her all encompassing duties (including Editor) and does a great job.

Our website is paid to a Company to maintain which has seen many challenges and changes but necessary in today's world to help sustain the Organization. 

The Membership Treasurer (elected) is unpaid being only responsible for dues which currently stands at about 100.

Our Membership Secretary is an elected unpaid position. 

 

Being a Registered Tax Receipt Organisation, it takes this very basic structure to keep up with the ever changing Government rules and regulations plus the always present costs required to run the electricity, vehicle maintenance, building repairs, etc. and food costs when holding public events.

This might not be your typical Car Club but has it's roots as such. 

The membership is what helps by volunteering at these events and naturally are unpaid. We also have a great Volunteer recruitment list from the General Public that are always desperately needed as members do get worn out.

 

Hope this helps with the discussion.

Doug

 

 

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Our chapter, as other clubs I belong to, have declining membership and I would say overall loss of interest. I am not sure what the next generation will bring.  We can only do so much before total disintegration, in my opinion.  My primary focus is to get my children and their kids to maintain an interest.  I wonder how that will go??

 

John 

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Roberta,

There is no local BCA chapter close to me, BUT I am on the board of directors for our region of the AACA.  None of the positions are paid positions.  Seems as though as our general membership numbers dwindle, it becomes harder to find people to fill positions within the board.

 

Sometimes positions are just "filled" and the club suffers because the Dedication is not there.  More times than not, people don't even listen or comprehend what is expected of them when they are accepting a position within the board.  Thus the "Trickle Down Effect". Other board members get frustrated, things are said within the general memebership and we lose members.

 

I will get off my soapbox with one last thing.  The ones who seem to complain the most, NEVER are part of the solutions. They just quit!

 

Matt

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In the model of a non-profit, chapter officers are "volunteer" and receive no compensation, other than verified expenses (when requested).  Pretty much the way things tend to be.

 

Most clubs have an elected newsletter editor, which can include the website administration.  No compensation, other than reimbursement of expenses.

Some clubs do pay somebody to perform these function, BUT it takes a strong financial situation to support such activities.  One of my other involvements was referred to a lady who did an AACA chapter's newsletter.  She came highly-recommended, but her reputed price was higher than seemed prudent for us to pursue.  In earlier times, a lady was paid to do that organization's quarterly newsletter.  That cost was saved when a new newsletter editor was elected who had a computer to do it on.  She copied it at Kinkos for greatly-reduced costs.

 

Many club have transitioned to electronic delivery of newsletters, which saves costs, but some still desire the printed page in their hands.

 

I'm curious of why the interest in these areas?

 

Willis Bell  20811

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9 hours ago, NTX5467 said:

In the model of a non-profit, chapter officers are "volunteer" and receive no compensation, other than verified expenses (when requested).  Pretty much the way things tend to be.

 

Most clubs have an elected newsletter editor, which can include the website administration.  No compensation, other than reimbursement of expenses.

Some clubs do pay somebody to perform these function, BUT it takes a strong financial situation to support such activities.  One of my other involvements was referred to a lady who did an AACA chapter's newsletter.  She came highly-recommended, but her reputed price was higher than seemed prudent for us to pursue.  In earlier times, a lady was paid to do that organization's quarterly newsletter.  That cost was saved when a new newsletter editor was elected who had a computer to do it on.  She copied it at Kinkos for greatly-reduced costs.

 

Many club have transitioned to electronic delivery of newsletters, which saves costs, but some still desire the printed page in their hands.

 

I'm curious of why the interest in these areas?

 

Willis Bell  20811

501 C rules govern this.  I am the President of a local youth sports 501 C3 and no one on the board gets paid for their service as a board member.

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Just wondering because I can, 501c3 and 501c7 have different purposes and can have paid employees within reason. Volunteers for these tasks are becoming hard to find. Several things I did as a volunteer are now being paid.

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Paid employee's yes, I have them.  Paid board members gets more difficult.  Can't be paid for being on the board. Board members in my org can only be paid to officiate, and are paid the same as other paid officials.  Paying a member is different than a board member. 

 

Disclaimer, IANAL, consult your attorney about your specific situation.

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Hiring a contractor to provide certain services may appear to be less than frugal, but it does have its advantages. For one, you can have a discussion about wants,needs, and results, without the over head concern that a volunteer will get insulted and quit.  And for another, contractors should continue to do their job in the face of adversity.  

However, it is likely a rare 501-c-7 that has a mature financial status that allows for contracting out.  It is also a rare 501-c-7 that has folks interested in assuming responsibilities.  

In my opinion, folks join 501-c-7's for their entertainment potential. And the people who do volunteer for these positions of responsibility do so because the work is their idea of entertainment.  If only there was a way to avoid the inevitable burn-out of the volunteers,  the issue of contracting out would be moot.  

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17 minutes ago, JohnD1956 said:

Hiring a contractor to provide certain services may appear to be less than frugal, but it does have its advantages. For one, you can have a discussion about wants,needs, and results, without the over head concern that a volunteer will get insulted and quit.  And for another, contractors should continue to do their job in the face of adversity.  

However, it is likely a rare 501-c-7 that has a mature financial status that allows for contracting out.  It is also a rare 501-c-7 that has folks interested in assuming responsibilities.  

In my opinion, folks join 501-c-7's for their entertainment potential. And the people who do volunteer for these positions of responsibility do so because the work is their idea of entertainment.  If only there was a way to avoid the inevitable burn-out of the volunteers,  the issue of contracting out would be moot.  

And in the case of newsletter editors, if there is no passion or information provided it is also moot.

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I was editor of our BCA Chapter's newsletter for 5 years.  I was never paid nor did I expect payment.  In fact, There were times when I covered extra costs out of my own pocket for a feature or equipment for publishing the newsletter.  As I was also a board member, I knew what the treasury looked like and realized that there no money for the newsletter outside of postage.  I took the newsletter from a true cut and paste (real scissors, real paste) to an electronic version and color pictures.  Subsequent editors (also non paid) have taken what I did and improved a lot upon my work.  I still chuckle when the newsletter comes out and I recognized something (boilerplate) that I wrote probably 20 years ago.

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50 minutes ago, ol' yeller said:

There were times when I covered extra costs out of my own pocket

 

As a chapter director there were a number of times I reached into my pocket and paid just to avoid a group discussion on spending money. It sure made my life easier.

 

I'm chuckling at the thought of the comments that would have been made if they knew what I paid for a few things.  Stereotype or not, it is a Buick owner thing. I don't see it in other clubs.

Bernie

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1 hour ago, 60FlatTop said:

 

As a chapter director there were a number of times I reached into my pocket and paid just to avoid a group discussion on spending money. It sure made my life easier.

 

I think that's a question often faced in these situations: do we have this discussion or do I solve the problem and move on?

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Jake,

 

Our chapter does a PDF Newsletter, and prints and mails only those necessary (I  think now not more than 5).  The problem, no one wants to provide articles to give it substance.

 

John

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21 hours ago, 60FlatTop said:

 

As a chapter director there were a number of times I reached into my pocket and paid just to avoid a group discussion on spending money. It sure made my life easier.

 

I'm chuckling at the thought of the comments that would have been made if they knew what I paid for a few things.  Stereotype or not, it is a Buick owner thing. I don't see it in other clubs.

Bernie

Bernie, I'm new to a car club. I'm not new to ongoing expenses in conducting a n y business. I measure utility and benefit of paying for expenses for any group I might belong with how much hassle is it to get the money back. I hate filling out forms. I hate doing goofy paperwork so much I would not fill out AN additional form for cell phone expenses. As a matter of fact I was awarded a measurable amount for work productivity. The home office measured the productivity. I had to fill out a form. I told my boss it is not an award when filling out this additional paperwork takes me away from developing more business. My boss filled out the forms as he was getting questions about why I wouldn't fill out the forms.

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20 hours ago, KongaMan said:

 

I think that's a question often faced in these situations: do we have this discussion or do I solve the problem and move on?

Mr. KongaMan, I'm with you on " is it worth the hassle"? For me, it depends on the amount of $ and how the benefits are realized by the group.

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23 hours ago, BUICK RACER said:

And in the case of newsletter editors, if there is no passion or information provided it is also moot.

John, I believe you have a sharp perspective about the subject. When I volunteer for group activities I figure about how long I can be useful. When I'm no longer useful to the group or myself I step down from the position.

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It is not the hassle of getting the money back. It is merely mentioning that some might be spent.

 

Did you know Abe Lincoln was really a short, fat guy? They put his picture on a penny and the sexagenarians pinched and stretched them out so much it caused a misconception.

 

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Local car club I belong to now pays a contractor for web site and publishing the newsletter. We have a volunteer editor who assembles the articles, but the publisher does the layout. This was done many years ago when I could no longer keep up with the desire for a more modern web site and it helps to lighten the load to actually be able to get an editor. 

 

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10 hours ago, 60FlatTop said:

It is not the hassle of getting the money back. It is merely mentioning that some might be spent.

 

Did you know Abe Lincoln was really a short, fat guy? They put his picture on a penny and the sexagenarians pinched and stretched them out so much it caused a misconception.

 

Bernie, maybe it is the Depression Era attitudes that only make Lincoln look tall. I'm not too sure about the value of a penny I can't walk by one without picking it up.

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The issue of "burnout" (not tires!) is a very real thing, it seems, in car clubs.  In one other car club I'm in, it seemed that if we elected a guy President, he'd do that for a few years, then he wouldn't run for that office the next time.  He'd quit coming to meetings and might re-appear 5 years later.  In other car clubs, after their stint as President was over, some weren't seen again!  In other cases, some are "Officers for LIFE", it seems.

 

When you first join one of these-type organizations, then are a member for a few years, eventually, you'll be asked to become an officer of some type.  IF you accept that challenge, one should be prepared to work with the other officers AND the membership to make the whole deal a better group, if for no other reason that "You're a part of it".  Once you get used to it and comfortable with what and whom is involved, it can get to be pretty easy AND more fun.  These experiences can broaden your expertise and knowledge of what and how to do things, for the group.  The amount of time these things take can be variable and depend upon how much delegation you're comfortable with doing.

 

There is ONE orientation that must be followed for best observed success  . . . Don't try to make your group into what another group might be.  Use what the other group(s) might do, or how they do it, to adapt to your group and see if the membership likes it.  Then you go from there and see how it all evolves.  EACH group is different and that must be respected,, no matter what.  Let them make suggestions and the membership determine what they desire to do.  The chapter officers and offer input and such and moderate this process.  It all needs to be a group consensus of what to do and how to do it.  IF you're going to suggest something, be sure to "bird-dog" it so it works as desired and everybody might desire to do it again, at another time.

 

As noted, when there is a paid contractor, there can be more control over situations.  What happens, when, and how.  But not every group has the money to support this situation, so that falls back on volunteers.  I've also observed situations where a difference of orientation might exist between the "requesters" and the volunteer "implementers".  Just be careful to hand over "full control, without over-sight" to any one person who's going to do something.  Our officers did that one time.  The member seemed responsible, but had his own orientation of how much money he could spend.  When he handed us the bills, they were more than they should have been.  In our chapter officer discussion afterward, I noted that we did give him full control, hoping he would not go "hog wild" in spending.  He went over-budget, we reimbursed the expenses, and said we'd never do that again.  We had enough money in the chapter treasury to do the deal, even at the elevated level, so it wasn't like it bankrupted us or anything like that.  Learn from mistakes in a continuous improvement orientation.

 

There's an interesting background of the "e-990 Postcard" that all non-profits are supposed to file each year, in order to maintain their tax-exempt status.  PM me for details.

 

Willis Bell  20811

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There may be some membership (or high dues) number that would justify paying someone to do these tasks.

I belong to a local "generic" car club with 100 members......we have a member that does a superior job of handling the web site....at no charge, there is no newsletter, just emails that update members on activities.

There are some "clubs" that are run by an individual and there are no officers......the individual that started (owns) the club collects the dues and may pay someone to do the web site and print the newsletter/magazine.

That person may not get a salary but probably writes off all his expenses (travel, computer, phone, and everything associated with their annual meet) these people are either retired or have a full time job to put food on the table.

The Reatta Div of the BCA has about 300 members and the dues are only $10 a year (plus BCA membership is required) I believe they pay Peter to do the web site.  The newsletter is quarterly and is done by a member and expenses covered by the club.

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