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|It seems that the membership of the USCA doesn’t like to hear about the decision processes of the Board because every time we publish them we get complaints about “politics”. But if we don’t make things public, we get complaints about “secrecy” so this is being written to avoid the taint of secrecy and in the hopes that those of you who don’t want to hear this will skip it and cut us some slack for talking about politics. If you aren’t interested in the inner workings of the USCA and don’t want to hear us air our dirty laundry, STOP HERE and go back to the fun stuff. Please understand that your USCA Board is not happy to bring this issue to the membership but we have been forced into this by the irresponsible and illegal actions of the USCA President, John Kennedy. |
The USCA has been paying to have the duties of the Secretary done for many years. This amounts to $2,400 a year and a majority of your Board feels that the job can be done by a volunteer and the money could be better spent elsewhere. There was a vote that carried by a wide majority and the Board instructed John Kennedy, the President of the USCA to inform Al Roach, the current Secretary and Registrar that as of the end of June, 2004, we would no longer pay to have the job done. That gave Al Roach a ninety day notice. If Mr. Roach wanted to do the job as a volunteer, that would be great but if not, we would seek a volunteer to take on the task.
The issue that prompted this decision was the general agreement on your Board that we should tell Al Roach in time for him to decide if this made any difference to him before the election. If he didn’t want to run if he wasn’t to be paid for keeping the club roster, he might not want to run for office. John Kennedy refused to officially tell Mr. Roach about the change and in fact told Mr. Roach that he (John Kennedy) would see to it that Mr. Roach would continue to be paid despite the decision of the USCA Board. Unfortunately, John Kennedy didn’t admit that to the Board that until Al Roach had told a representative of the Board that John Kennedy assured him he was keeping his job and his pay, and to ignore the USCA Board.
This leaves the USCA in a very bad place. The President has set himself above the authority of your USCA Board in conflict to the USCA Constitution and Bylaws as well as common sense. He has made an unauthorized and unilateral commitment to spend the USCA’s money. This is just the most recent problem that John Kennedy has had with your USCA Board but it is by far the most grave. To a person, the undersigned members of your Board are opposed to John Kennedy’s position and find that anyone who sets himself above the best interests of the USCA and the decisions of your Board should be told by the membership that he is out of order. We ask you, if you are a current member of the USCA, to let your opinion be heard by posting here on www.sidecar.com or by sending a message to any of the Board members.
Please understand how very sorry we are to be forced to bring this to the attention of the USCA membership. We’d like this to be about the fun and friendship that sidecaring has brought to us all but that’s just not always possible.
Spencer Bennett, Southeast Regional Director
Joyce Canfield, Central Regional Director
Jay Geise, Western Regional Director
Robert Montague, Treasurer
Al Olme, Vice President
Dave Szkudlarek, Midwest Regional Director
Over the course of the past couple of years a lot has happened to help the USCA become a more active organization with many more folks participating. We’ve got a better, more modern and slicker looking newsletter. Now that we’ve got Steve Woodward as the new permanent editor, it’s coming out on time. We’ve had several regional rallies to augment the USCA national rally. We’ve taken back the web site from Doug Bingham, who was kind enough to host it while we couldn’t afford to. Thanks Doug. With the help of several volunteers headed up by Mike Laubenstein the new web site has grown from a col
Location: Boise, Idaho
|Throw the Rascals out! |
Break their swords, split their tunics, hand them a white feather and drum them out of office and back into the trenches with the rest of us soldiers.
Location: Middleburg, Pa
|I would like to request to see a response right here from each board member...over and above the post By Al Olme. I would also like to see a response from each person on the new ballot for the upcoming election right here. After all the new ones on the board will be THE future of the USCA after the old board members are gone. |
Just a thought,
Edited by claude #3563 3/11/2004 7:41 PM
|Just for the record, all the members of the Board whose names appear under the post, reviewed and some contributed to the post before it appeared, I was simply asked to do the writing. |
I agree with Claude, I'd like to see what the potential new members of the Board have to say. I would hope that they take the time to get both sides of the story before the respond.
|For the convenience of USCA members who want to comment directly to their Board representative. |
Spencer Bennett [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Joyce Canfield,USCA#6576 [email@example.com]
Dave Szkudlarek [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Robert Montague [email@example.com]
Al Olme [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Jay Geise [email@example.com]
|Not that it makes any difference, but, out of context: |
"...The reason John gave was a citation of a disjointed part of the Constitution that calls for an eight week notice to the general membership before a special meeting can be held. The item obviously refers to a “General Meeting” and not a Board Meeting but it is part of the Constitution..."
"Disjointed?" The FedGov's idea on THE Constitution elevates the "general welfare clause" to the foundation of the USA. Hence the Welfare State.
"Obvious?" It is obvious to me that the 2nd Amendment is a "Right of the People" but who the heck am I?
Constitutions can be a bitch!
Maybe that's why we want to force one on Iraq?
Well, you ASKED for input...
Location: Middleburg, Pa
|For the convenience of the Board representatives |
who want to comment directly to the USCA members:
We are right here
Location: pasco, wa
|i come from the land of recall here in cali, |
lets through the bumm out
|Please post the USCA constitution procedure for a recall election at the general membership meeting.|
|Regretably, recall is one of the things that the folks who wrote the USCA Constitution left out. Fortunately, it's one of the things that your Board will be adding to the new version that is currently in work. In any event, it won't be ready before the next election in two months.|
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
|Here is my personal opinion on this matter: |
Only a service that requires to be outsourced ( farmed out to individuals who are not USCA members, officers, affiliates, etc.) should be paid and all the money raised by the USCA should only be used to improve our association. If someone wants to be paid for a service, that person is NOT a REAL sidecar enthusiast. Therefore that individual should be automatically disqualified from being a USCA member.
I also believe that, in our great association, there have to be qualified persons who would be willing to take over the responsibility of Secretary/Registrar of the USCA.
Edited by pierobassi 3/12/2004 1:15 PM
Location: Southern NC & Northern SC
|After reading the original post several times, I thought it would be appropriate to ask for a response to the allegations from John Kennedy. John, is everything that was posted here accurate? Is there anything that you would like to dispute? Thanks, |
Location: Middleburg, Pa
|The decision to pay Al Roach early on was not a decision anyone today had anything to do with. Him being paid to be 'registrar' or whatever up to this point should not be an issue as none today seem to know how it came about. That was then ...this is now. |
The way things have been presented it almost sounds like John Kennedy is being held guilty for the actions of those before him in addition to what has transpired recently. It also makes Al Roach sound like a crook and I just feel this is a diservice to a man who has done well for the USCA up to this point. I suppose only he could express the truth regarding what transpired way back when the agreement was for him to be paid...but, again, is this really the issue?
For the two years that some of this board has been in office this has apparently never came up as a huge issue until now..right before the election.
Edited by claude #3563 3/12/2004 11:12 PM
|As the western represenitive for the USCA until I came to office I had no idea that the USCA was paying $200 a month for a registrar. I was aplauld to find out about it and once I found out about it kept bringing it up on the boards message board. |
My reason for this are that I have been trying to get the USCA to hold an event on the west coast. I have twice offered to host the national in the west and both times I was told that "Rallies in the west loose money and we need to make money on the national" So to find out that the club could afford to pay some one $200 a month to do a job that if done with computers should be able to be done in a couple of hours a month but that they could not afford to allow people in the west to have the national because the last one (about 20 years ago now) lost money angers me a great deal.
I have nothing against Al Roach. I would like to see him continue on in the postion but with out pay if he wants. However I also would like to see him deciede to participate in debates on issues on the boards web site some thing that he is not willing to do. Check for Al Roaches email address in the listing for board members. You will find that he does not have one.
But some thing far more important is going on here. We have 8 board members plus John Kenndedy as president who gets to vote in case of a tie. Two of these board members will not use the boards web site which leaves 6 that do. Of these 6 all 6 voted to stop paying for the position. Even if the other two voted against it 6 votes would still be a clear majority. This should be the end of the issue. It should be a done deal. But John Kennedy seems to feel that he is above the board. He can do as he pleases. He has shown no respect to the members of the board, The people that voted us into office and the prosses in general. If one person in this case the president John Kennedy does not agree with the majority he should still acept what the majority has to say and abide by it. But not John Kennedy, his desicion to fight the board on this can only hurt the club.
I have no idea why he would want to do this. Why would any body want to pay for a service that they have people at least as competent as the person doing it willing to do it for free? Why would we want to pay a "registrar" to do the duty's that should be done by the secretary? It is clearly according to the by laws the secratary's job. The Secretary is not a paid position. So for me this entire situation is not right.
My guess, John liked the "good old days" of the USCA where the president pretty much did as he pleased, The board met once a year and did not bother to trouble the membership with details like telling membership what was going on, how much money the club had or for that matter even allow for voting for different officers. And was a club for a few select people on the east coast.
So I voted for not continuing to waste $2400 a year on a job that could be done for free as I feel that this is in the best interest of the people I am suppose to represent. The people in the west who have gone 20 years with out a national in the west.
Western regoin director.
P.S. My wife Tara and I will be hosting the national in 2005 AND IT WILL AT LONG LAST BE IN THE WEST
|You are right about most of it Claude, We don't know when or how Al Roach became Secretary/Registrar. As you know no elections have been held for many, many years, but as of July 1st, Al Roach will the an officially elected Secretary just like the rest of the Board. Each of the members has the opportunity to vote concerning this position and the simple fact that no one chose to run against him makes no difference. It is a conflict of interest problem. As Secretary should he have a vote concerning his salary as registrar? As you should see we need to straighten this out before the election and the politics of the election do not enter into the equasion. I think very strongly it is the right thing to do. |
|I think that we should get a rope and find a tree and hang the worthless sucker. |
This whole story needs to be investagate by a review board of common members, that is who I ran to repersent, pick a chair and get all the information.
My position is that I have followed the Consitutuion of the USCA, I have done what I promised in my election statement, and that I have acted for the good of the general membership.
The board was upset with my article in the sidecarist, last issue and Al Obe said that it would be war. I will stand before the general membership at the Bean Blossom rally.
Here is my suggestion, the USCA board meets on the 'racedis' site ask the board to post that whole file and the const of the USCA and read through
then you will have all the information not just snipets that suits someones agenda.
I will petition the board to post these files , come to the general meeting at Bean Blossom I will and you will have all the information needed to make an informed decision. Bring the rope anyway a lynching can be added to the activities.
|Thanks Claude, |
Once again the board is mudding the waters, this is the battle I have been fighting for the last year, the board is upset that I am not one of the seceret society, that I am for a grassroot movement of the general members. It is time that the board listens to the members and not work in the backroom. I am here for the good of the club, the board has fought me from day one. My statement of wanting a riding board that understands sidecaring has gotten me in lots of deep water. Call for the board to open the 'racedis' file (all of it, not just snipets) and let the chips fall where they may.
Location: Menomonie, Wisconsin USA
|I don't have time to read the last year's worth of messages from the board site. Unfortunately it doesn't look like I'll be able to come to Indiana either. I'm sure there are a few other members who won't be there as well. How about answering the question about whether or not you told Mr. Roach to ignore the board and that he would continue to be paid. And are there any other people being paid a regular sum out of the treasury?|
Location: Southern NC & Northern SC
|Does the constitution provide for the president to override the board's decision? Thanks again, |
Location: Middleburg, Pa
|If the President has an issue of concern can he ask the board to vote on it. If so should the board do so? |
|No it does not. |
It is pretty clear that all that is required is a majority vote. The only input the president has if a tie in voting needs to be broken. This was not the case. Every member who voted on it voted for it.
|And --Just who are the"Rascals"? I for one, have put in a lot of unpaid time as Treasurer of the USCA. I don't feel I am a Rascal! As some have indicated, this matter is simply a case of The Board (your representatives)have taken a majority vote on a matter (to preserve funds for the use of the general membership)and the President does not agree! He is one and we are six! Now who is the Rascal? |
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Let's get straight to the point. If Al Roach is not interested in doing the "job" unless we pay him, he is NOT a sidecarist who cares about the welfare of our association. Therefore, it does not belog ... to it. This is just my personal opinion and .... all in good faith!
I know that you do not have time to read a years worth of post, but in just a few minutes I can send you through the year by giving you post #s then you can read the post before and after. If you do not have access to the whole file you will always wonder what was left out and who is not telling what. I ran for president on open board meeting, not a back room attack. The letter from the board posted on sidecar never went through the board meeting, it is not in the files anywhere. Our constitution is written to prevent this kind of thing from happening. I will be posting regarding the treatment of Al Roach and the action of the board.
|Things are getting pretty heated here. I believe that we should get a couple of things straight before we go off at a tangent. I apologize for another long post but there are several items to address. |
The first is that Al Roach has not said that he is unwilling to do the Secretary job if he is not paid for it. We informed him that after a 90 day notice (end of June) he would not be paid. When informed of this decision, he said that John Kennedy had assured him that he would be paid. Al Roach is not the bad guy here and I agree with Claude that he should not be characterized as such. STILL there is something wrong when the Secretary's duties are performed by a Registrar, who is paid, and the Secretary and the Registrar are the same person. Al Roach probably didn't arrange this. In all likelihood he was offered the money and like anyone else, he took it. We are retracting that offer because we can easily get the job done for free. How can we pay someone, using the club's money, for something that we can get for free? To do so would be a breach of the trust the membership placed in us to be fiscally responsible. And just for the record when John Kennedy was first told about Al Roach's pay, his reaction was that it should be stopped forthwith. 'Seems he's changed his mind.
John said,” The board was upset with my article in the sidecarist, last issue and Al Obe said that it would be war.” [sic] I think that John’s referring to his endorsement of candidates in the last issue of The Sidecarist. First, I think it’s a misquote but I could be wrong. It just doesn’t sound like me to say there would be a war. Second, John asked the Board if it was OK for him to endorse candidates for the USCA elections. The Board replied that it was fine but he shouldn’t do it as “The President of the USCA” because that might be viewed as an implication that the USCA also endorsed those candidates.
The Board was afraid that Kennedy’s endorsement, if it appeared to be “official” would scare off those who might run in opposition to John’s endorsed group. The Board feels very strongly that we should do our best to involve as many members as possible in making the club function. It builds camaraderie and gives more individuals a feeling of empowerment and fulfillment in being able to contribute to the good of the group as a whole. Sadly, John did just what we asked him not to do and who knows how many potential candidates decided not to run against the “President’s” endorsement? Oh yeah, and if John’s trying to belittle me by continually misspelling my name… well, it’s sort of an elementary school stunt and I don’t think it will have much effect.
What is this business John keeps bringing up about having a “riding Board”? Does he think that we don’t ride or does he think that folks who ride will just agree with him? I rode about 10,000 miles last year in our short Minnesota season. I rode from April to December and made two long trips and several short ones. So I guess I ride…but I still don’t JUST agree with whatever John says. In fairness, we do agree on a number of things. We agree that sidecaring should be fun. We agree that the USCA should be fun and that it should be run for the benefit of the members. We just don’t always agree on what that means. Right now, John is trying to say that paying for a service that we can get for free (and possibly done better) is beneficial to the members. That’s one of the places that we don’t agree. And, I guess we don’t agree about that riding thing because, I think that (so long as he isn’t paid) Al Roach would be a reasonable candidate for Secretary but since he isn’t much of a rider, he wouldn’t fit John’s criteria. Come on John, if you can’t make sense, at least be consistent.
Claude asked. “If the President has an issue of concern can he ask the board to vote on it. If so should the board do so?”. Yes, the President can ask for a vote on a question IF the question is in order. That is, if the question is something that the Board has the ability to decide
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