NARFE FLORIDA INC.
ELECTRONIC EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING
September 14, 2013
The meeting was called to order at 1:04 PM by President Kenneth Thomas who offered the invocation, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance led by First Vice President William Leatham.
In electronic attendance were: President Kenneth Thomas, Executive Vice President Lane Lemley, Executive Vice President William Leatham, Treasurer Ruth Blackwell, Diana Leatham for Secretary CarolJoy Reeves, District Vice Presidents Robert Shaw, Richard Carroll, Bernice Comella, Eleanor Aungst, Terry Zitek, Bruce Roggenkamp, and James Greene for Ron Cibolski. Arlette Thomas was also present. District VP Clyde Young did not attend. Following the roll call, President Thomas stated that there was a quorum.
NARFE National Action Items
President Thomas summarized the key points enumerated by National. In a 9/13/13 message, President Beaudoin thanked the membership for the coupons which they sent to Headquarters; he reminded that the week of 9/16/13 through 9/22/13 had been designated as “NARFE Call Congress Week”; he emphasized the danger of the Senate Postal Reform Target contained in Bill 1486 which would remove postal workers and their retirees from the FEHPB health care system; and he urged everyone to contact their representatives in face of the fiscal deadlines before Congress in the coming weeks.
Region III Training Seminar Warner Robins, GA - 10/31/13 – 11/2/13
President Thomas reviewed the conference registration and Marriott Courtyard hotel rates. He said he would like at least one person from each district to attend the Conference. To date, Jane Lemley, Terry Zitek, Bill Leatham and he would be attending and giving presentations.
Ruth Blackwell confirmed the board-approved budget for this event is $3,000. President Thomas said there will be no reimbursement for mileage, fuel, or other transportation for the conference. He has authorized expense reimbursement for the hotel room, tax, and the conference registration, up to $300 per district. He mentioned that Arlette Thomas will be attending as the FEEA Regional and State coordinator.
He asked everyone to tell Jame Lemley who will be attending from each district to ensure that funds designated are utilized.
NARFE Florida, Inc. Appointed Officers - 2013-2014
President Thomas referred to the list of appointed officer, who agreed to continue in their positions and indicated there were some key vacancies which urgently need to be filled; these include Coalition Coordinator, Membership, Recruiting, and NARFE-PAC.
District 3 VP Bernice Comella said several already-appointed people in her district had contacted her about possibly switching their appointments. Specially, Patricia Vevera expressed an interest in the Coalition Coordinator position; and Lee Sherman, who is now appointed to Retention, would like to be a back-up to John Ledman in Services.
Ken Thomas indicated a revision might need to be made, however, an executive board approval is needed now of the appointed officers, as listed. He instructed the DVPs to go into their chapters and identify people who would be willing to serve, preferably with back-ups for each position.
President Thomas said there was a new Appointed Position of Time, Place, and Site, and he was proposing Robert Lemley, who has served in this capacity..
Motion 01 was made by Richard Carroll that the appointed committee members, as listed, be approved. Bruce Roggenkamp seconded the motion. The motion passed.
2014 District Meetings.
The district meeting dates have been confirmed and are sequenced as follows: District 1: 1/28/2014; District 2: 1/29/2014; District 8: 2/3/2014; District 6: 2/5/2014; District 5: 2/7/2014; District 3: 2/20/2014, District 4: 2/21/2014; District 7: 2/22/2014.
Richard Carroll asked if all the federation officers were going to attend all of the district meetings. President Thomas indicated that he, Jane Lemley, and Bill Leatham would attend; he did not know about Ruth Blackwell or CarolJoy Reeves, or any others.
Chapters in Need of Attention
President Thomas mentioned the chapters who are in this category are those where there is no one to assume leadership roles and the chapter was at risk of closing. Of the previously identified 10 chapters, 9 have been helped and are still operating.
Currently, 7-18 chapters have been identified in need of attention. Several have been non-operational for years. President Thomas said the issue facing us is what we need to do and what we can do to save these chapters.
Bernice Comella raised the issue of Chapter #58 in her district. President Thomas instructed Bernice to talk with Lamar Thomas, Chapter Treasurer, who is the only officer of that chapter. The former Chapter President had recently resigned. President Thomas suggested that a discussion on this Chapter could be done at a later time, along with Jane Lemley.
President Thomas posted the Procedures for Closing a Chapter. He said that the DVPs and their chapters need to be aware of the procedures governing the closing of a chapter for NARFE Florida, Inc.; that these procedures are different from those of National, which are contained in their F-10. He also advised that someone needs to take on the job of rewriting the Federation's closing procedures to be in line with National's.
Eleanor Aungst mentioned that she has four chapters in her district with no activity. She said she has been contacted by a Chapter member who wanted to turn over the Chapter's memorabilia and records. President Thomas and Jane Lemley suggested they would discuss these issues outside the board meeting.
Eleanor Aungst volunteered to review and revise Florida's Procedures for Closing a Chapter to be in line with Nationals.
President Thomas emphasized that there should be two or more authorized people on each checking account to insure the financial stability of the funds.
Jim Greene spoke about a problem chapter in District 8 which wanted to close. Jane Lemley suggested that they discuss this outside of the board meeting.
NARFE Florida, Inc. Annual Convention 5/6/14 – 5/8/14 - Rosen Center, Orlando FL
President Thomas said that the Training Group members Roland Moore and Sue Stein were putting together a package of training opportunities for the convention.
President Thomas said the board needed to set and approve the convention registration fee. He indicated that Linda Harmon was still completing the last convention audit, which would be ready for discussion in a few weeks, but it was clear the registration fee needs to be changed. He suggested that the convention registration fee be raised to a minimum of $20, as we are losing money on the convention in part due to the low registration fee.
A discussion followed on raising the registration fee.
Motion 02 was made by Ruth Blackwell to increase the 2014 NARFE Florida, Inc. annual convention registration fee to $25. Bill Leatham seconded the motion. The motion passed.
President Thomas referred to the Proposed Service Agreement submitted by Tim Wynn. He indicated it needed to be approved by the board. He said that the board-approved budget was $6,000, and that the submitted proposal estimated the fees for the convention and preparation at $4,050. President Thomas said that the parliamentarian expenses for this year were high because of the rewrite of the By-Laws.
Richard Carroll said he thought that the services of Tim Wynn were very good.
Motion 03 was made by Richard Carroll to approve the Service Agreement and Estimate submitted by Tim Wynn for convention parliamentarian services of $4,050. This motion was seconded by Jane Lemley. The motion passed.
Terry Zitek pointed out that in Mr. Wynn's proposal there is a $150/hour fee for any additional work required or requested outside of the convention. Ruth Blackwell suggested that everyone needed to read and understand Items B, C, D, and E of the Service Agreement and Estimate.
Unfinished Business and New Business
President Thomas announced that a Blue Cross/Blue Shield Open Season Webinar had been scheduled for October. Eddie Williams from Florida Blue would be the presenter and Bill Leatham would be coordinating the event.
President Thomas reminded everyone to review the Region III Training Seminar material, look at their Chapters to identify additional appointed officers, review the District Meeting schedule, additional discussions would be held on chapters in need of attention, and that in 2-4 weeks Linda Harmon would present the audits.
Jane Lemley said there were several other important items that needed to be addressed.
The first had to do with the board approval for the disbursement of the 2013 Alzheimer's cruise money to the Byrd Institute.
Motion 04 was made by Jane Lemley that the funds collected from the NARFE Florida Inc. Alzheimer's cruise and deposited in the NARFE Florida Inc.'s bank account be transferred to the USF Health Byrd Alzheimer's Institute. Ruth Blackwell seconded this motion. The motion was approved.
Jane Lemley next reported that Convention Chairs Kent and Marge Pfremmer had received only a few responses to their e-mail request for convention volunteers; additionally, Roland Moore and Sue Stein needed the DVPs assistance in getting people to help with vendor tables and convention booklet ads. The DVPs need to have their chapters respond and volunteer.
Eleanor Aungst said her chapters reported that they needed more detail on the work required. Jane Lemley offered her help in clarifying this information.
Jane Lemley announced that she had received many requests for Chapter visitations following her offer to visit the Chapters at her own expense. She would be providing the dates of these visitation to the DVPs.
Richard Carroll pointed out that procedures for retention of chapter records are included in the F-10 from National.
Richard Carroll asked about the logistics and geography of the Rosen Center, wanting to know if “everything was under the same roof”. President Thomas answered that it is a large facility and we are trying to make sure rooms are close to the elevators. Information for renting mobility carts, which was published on the website for the recently concluded Chapter Presidents and National Executive Board Meeting at the Rosen Center, will be displayed on the Florida Federation website. He urged making arrangements for a mobility cart before arriving at the hotel because renting it upon arrival will cost significantly more.
Richard Carroll confirmed he will be attending the Training Seminar in Georgia.
Eleanor Aungst asked about the filing IRS Form 990 by the Chapters. She wanted to know what would happen with a Chapter who had no business and hadn't met for some time. Ruth Blackwell answered that there could be a penalty for not filing and that Don Stewart still completes returns on behalf of several Chapters. The form can be obtained on the IRS.gov website. President Thomas offered that one of chapters in Bruce Roggenkamp's district has been fined $400 for not complying with the filing.
Ruth Blackwell said the Chapters need to know that certain things are required of them and must be done. Eleanor Aungst offered that this will be a problem for inactive chapters and Ruth Blackwell suggested she speak with Don Stewart to see how he has helped with this problem.
President Thomas offered a benediction to close the meeting.
The motion to adjourn the meeting was offered by President Thomas and seconded by Bill Leatham at 2:37PM.
Kenneth J. Thomas
Diana M. Leatham
Acting Secretary (for CarolJoy Reeves)