June 24, 2006
President Curt Miller’s written report to the Board made the following points:
- “Flagging publications sales and less than expected membership growth” are areas of weakness on the current income statement.
- The hope is always to increase renewal memberships and new memberships. “Staff is currently working to determine ways to acquire new members for ADK.”
- The current economic, business and social climate makes it apparent that ADK must tackle membership and communications issues.
- Feedback regarding Adirondac magazine and ADK’s webpage “consistently derogates these media as substandard and failing to meet our mission.”
- Necessary budget cuts three years ago scaled back the magazine’s size and quality.
- A donor’s generous $5,000 gift will assist in improving both Adirondac and the webpage.
- The implementation of a new server is nearing completion. Again another generous donor contributed the entire cost of the equipment, software, and installation.
- Curt and staff have recently worked with the Outings Committee to “re-align
overhead costs with fees and prices of trips. Trip prices will include overhead
expenses that contribute to operations.” For trips costing less than
1K an additional $40 fee has been added, for those over 1K an $80 fee.
Executive Director Neil Woodworth:
- "Concerned about the poor performance of several 2006 direct mailing membership acquisitions and weakness in our membership revenue." Total membership (5/31/06) is 29,023.
- "Only a little over a decade ago, ADK chapters recruited the majority of our new members. I believe that we must assist our chapters to gain new members and I have asked our Membership staff to look for those opportunities."
- Noticeable change in look and content to Adirondac will begin with the Nov./Dec. 2006 issue.
- ADK has NO plans to sell its Heart Lake and Johns Brook properties to the state or anyone else.
- ADK is discussing leasing 30 acres of its Heart Lake property to the state for 50 years for a "replacement" Visitor’s Service Facility and parking lot. The state would construct both. BoD approval will be required for such an agreement.
Conservation and Advocacy, Neil Woodworth:
Environmental Protection Fund (EPF): The Governor and the Legislature finally approved a $225 million EPF on Friday, June 23. (Last year’s 2005-2006 EPF was funded at $150 million.) $50 million is for land acquisition, $15 million for state land stewardship and $23 million for farmland protection. Neil thanked all those who responded to the Action Alert with letters urging approval of an EPF before the legislative session ended in June.
ATV legislation: ADK continues to work with legislative leaders on drafting comprehensive all terrain vehicle legislation. "ADK is advocating for strong reforms, including greater penalties for ATV trespass on public and private lands, including impoundment of the violatorís ATV after the second or third offense; ban on ATV use on existing state-owned lands; and a requirement for an ATV operatorís certificate."
Treasurer’s Report, Tom Wheeler:
- The end of May is always a difficult time when our expenses still exceed our revenue.
- he North Country operations had an excellent May and summer reservations are up.
- The trails program may receive stronger state funding than last year.
- Publications were near budget in May. The newly released book, No Place I’d Rather Be, may have a positive effect on sales.
- Concern about membership numbers: 20% of the organization’s revenue steam comes from this area. Members must be retained and new members gained.
- The Development Department needs to generate strong revenues for the remainder of the year. "It is not reasonable to anticipate that this will come in large lumps, which means that our members must continue to consider us as a worthy object of their gifts and donations."
- Management is working hard to keep expenses in line with budget working towards a positive bottom line for the year.
- Resolution on Conservation Committee Charter: The Conservation Committee Charter was approved unanimously having been reviewed and updated in accordance with the Club’s Sunset Rule. Approved unanimously
- Trails Committee: Trail Construction and Maintenance Policy: The Trail Construction and Maintenance Policy put forth by the Trails Committee which stresses among other things that "trail construction and maintenance on foot trails will be given a higher priority over trails for other purposes" passed with one dissenting vote.
- Resolution for Dues Increase: The last dues increase approved by the Board of Directors was implemented on April 1, 2002. As "ADK is experiencing increased operating expenses from outside factors such as energy, postage, business supplies, healthcare, and liability insurance resulting in average operating expense increases of 2.0% annually" this resolution is being presented. ADK’s Bylaws require two resolutions of the BoD to implement a dues increase with notification of the change published in Adirondac this is the first step leading to a dues increase effective January 1, 2007. Increases will be as follows: Family from $55 to $60, Individual from $45 to $50, Senior Family from $45 to $50, Senior & Student from $35 to $40. Resolution passed.
Harvest Moon Madness: Bob Wilcox, Chair, told about plans for the 10th Annual Silent & Live Auction Gala on November 4 at The Hall of Springs, Saratoga Springs. The committee seeks to make this ADK’s premier fund raising event; this year’s budget projection is 90K. New this year is an on-line auction as a "companion to the live event."
58th Annual Fall Outing: Eileen Wheeler, Laurentian Chapter, spoke about Fall Outing the weekend of September 29 Oct. 1 in Star Lake; a full weekend of hikes, paddles and programs has been planned.
No Place I’d Rather Be: Stuart Mesinger, author of ADK’s most recent publication, was on hand to tell about his book inspired by the "Wit and Wisdom" from Adirondack Lean-to Journals.