october 23, 2012

Present: Cara Jablon, Richard Laeser, David Warthen, Bob Knopes, Ellie Thayer, Louann Eadie, Elizabeth Warren Boulton, Carolyn DeVilbiss, Reg Heitchue, Rosemary Schwartzbard, Melissa Fitzgerald

Others: Bob Jablon, Secretary.

The telephonic meeting was called to order on Tuesday, October 23, 2011 at 7:30 P.M. EDT, 11:30 P.M. GMT.

Minutes: The September 11, 2012 minutes were approved.

Well-being: All were delighted how well Dave Warthen is doing just after having had a left anterior hip replacement on October 16. He had gone up and down the steps, a sure sign of well-being (or carefully modulated stairs).

Treasurer’s Report: Dick Laeser distributed the Treasurer’s Report. There was not much to report. We are down to considering $1.59 changes, which the Secretary believes constitutes laudable precision. A question was raised whether meeting hosts and hostesses have been submitting reimbursement requests. Dick will look into this. Treasurers reports will be attached to all meeting notes.

Membership Records: Membership Records are being sent electronically. See Attachment. I include the following from the report: “We have 147 members (including eight charter members - S. Brown, R. Fett, G. Flake, C. Gordon, R. King*, N. Monacelli, L. Pease, & G. Santoro). Applicant Members (6) are Dan & Betty Churchill, 2-4-12, Joy D. & J. Steven Huffines, 4-1-12; Marna Blanchette, 4-1-12; Kal Nossuli, 4-19-12. Our associate members (6) are the Delevauxs, Paynes, & Sweeneys. We have 113 active members. We have 537 records in the PVS database, of which 390 are ex-members.

Events: Ray McKinley was not present for the EXCom call, but Cara reported, based upon an e-mail from Ray. There is a tentative planned December 9th concert, which Ray will arrange. Sunday monthly winter meetings are planned. They are arranged to fit in with the ski trips and to allow people to get home before dark. Ray proposed January 13th and February 17th.

Cara said we do not have a location for the December 18th meeting. She will be away and Bob Knopes will run the meeting. Louann noted that the Mahallatis had had the Christmas party for the past two years, suggesting that someone else should take a turn. It was agreed that Ray should handle this. He knows how to do it. Dick Laeser pointed out that Ray knows how to do it. Rosemary noted the November 27th Ski Center event.

Ski Trips: Rosemary reported on upcoming ski trips. At the time of the meeting we had fourteen people for Steamboat, including the leaders. We need twelve to fourteen people. John Holt will get on the phone to firm things up. Things appear to be a go.

Reg reported an October 31st drop dead date for the Canyons. We have only eleven confirmations, including Jeoffry (Liz’ son.). Reg is talking to the hotel about confirming the price. We should be OK on airfare. Ellie volunteered to put additional information in the TOOT. Secretary’s note: since the meeting, this trip has also been confirmed.

The Chamonix trip will be well attended and is on track.

Meeting Highlight: The above matters were non-controversial and covered relatively quickly. One issue took a fair amount of time. Due to a member request, I report somewhat summarily. The discussed issue was whether it is appropriate for a member to advertise in the TOOT, in this case to seek a roommate for a private, non-club ski trip. To various degrees the definition of the issue, discussion and people’s positions were influenced by the particular facts at issue .

The arguments made for approval included a desire to accommodate a member and, by extension, a desire to be open-minded. Equities were raised with regard to the particular situation because the member had made significant efforts to get a roommate for a member trip. Facing a deadline, the member signed up for a privately-arranged, non-club trip, but still needed a roommate for that other non-PVS trip. The member had gotten a green light to advertise (i.e., publish a request) in the TOOT from at least one member. This apparent permission made the member joyous. It was argued that a rejection could unnecessarily harm the member’s relationships with the club. It was also pointed out that having made the reservation elsewhere, the member would not come on a competing PVS trip this year, in any event. (There was some discussion of possible dissatisfaction with the PVS trips offered. However, during the trips discussion at this and prior meetings, the trips were positively received.)

Opponents argued that, of course, club members were free to go on any trips, PVS-sponsored or not, but that approval of the request would allow a member to use the TOOT, a PVS club communications vehicle, to undercut PVS trip activities. Our current, planned trips are not filled. The purpose of the TOOT is not to be an advertising vehicle that is used counter to club activities. Opponents also noted that the member could have locked in PVS trip arrangements. If it had, it would have been in the same situation of having made trip reservations without having a roommate as it was when it signed up for a non-PVS club trip without having a roommate. Opponents’ position was that having volitionally signed up for a different trip, the member had to live with the consequences. They expressed concern about the precedent of approval.

There did not appear to be useful precedent to the Committee as a whole. There had been prior requests from members for advertising for ski or recreational equipment (bicycle), condo rentals, and other ski-related activities that had been approved.   A request from an outside ski resort was denied . Past approvals were on a limited and individual basis, for example, the sale of a bicycle as opposed to commercial activities. To the extent that the club has a policy, it appears to be that decisions are made ad hoc.

Cara attempted to channel the issue as to whether we should grant approval for this particular advertisement and revisit the policy separately. She said that we could discuss the general policy at the next meeting. At least one member argued that any decision should be based on the particular facts of this case and not be precedential.

Ray had left word that approval would encourage people to ski, which is beneficial, but that he abstains.

There was a three-three vote. After some far fetched suggestions for breaking the tie (such as giving the Secretary a vote, which he refused and there was unanimous support that he should not be given the vote), it was agreed that Cara (who had voted for approval) would be given the power of decision. The Secretary is informed that Cara subsequently offered that the member could send a PVS-wide e-mail advertising for a roommate and that the member was pleased with the offer. The member successfully obtained another PVS member to partner in sharing the ski lodging.

Nominating Committee: Cara has to appoint a Chair. She has appointed Dave DeVilbiss.

Adjournment: The members voted to adjourn at 8:25 EDT and ended the meeting at 8:28.