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[RC] fee raise- from MW director - Enduroride

I was one of the ones who did not feel comfortable in voting in a raise at this time so voted against it. AERC has over the past few years consistently made a profit. I thought were told we needed to spend money in appropriate programs or we could be in danger of losing our non profit status. Now the BOD just found out (Aug. 27-28) that we are not looking so good for this year or next with our budget. This took most of us by surprise since we had thought how great we were financially and we were still spending.
 As we looked at our budget during the past month, we should have (and did) cut the budget way back but then instead of raising dues now, I felt since we still have a large amount of reserves,   we should see how our finances are looking around the time of convention and then at that time, if we felt we still need an increase in income, we could have a couple of months ahead of the convention to discuss some issues, we could have a round table talk with all the BOD members face to face during the convention, which hopefully all you would be there too. We should not be surprised and then asked to vote of something in a knee jeck panic situation. I know the BOD does need to protect our business but there are many ways this can be done. I do feel every BOD member made their decision for what they feel is  the good of AERC and don't want you to think otherwise, it is just a difference in opinions on how we want to achieve the balance.  
I voted the way I did for our ride managers and in turn the riders. I am chair of the ride managers committee and we opposed this fee hike. Members from my MW region must not have the money that other regions must have because many of our rides offer very inexpensive ride fees but even still many of them have small attendance. Many of them make little to no profit. Check the number of riders on the 5 (7) day Shore to Shore Ride, do you think the ride manager can afford to lose another $30.00 or so a day?  How much more would he be willing to pay in order to keep that 5 day ride alive for you? ( He said if he can not get more riders, he will have to let it go). If our region lose dedicated ride managers like Wayne, where would the our riders be? How many rides can they put on taking a risk? I am sure they will have to raise their fees but some are afraid the smaller rides may be the ones to suffer or disappear which will make us driving further to rides.  We also get another important service from our ride managers, they clear our trails and try to keep a good working relationship between with our land managers and endurance riders. I hope you can understand our dilemma over all the finance issues. Connie Caudill