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Re: Proposed AERC Membership Fees

> Of course, I know none of the above answers the question of equitable
> dues structure.  However, until we know exactly what it costs AERC per
> each member, and the declining cost when additional family members are
> added into the formula, I don't know how anyone can come up with a
> realistic pricing of dues.  

May I propose, then, that the AERC task itself with determining the actual
cost per member as soon as possible, so that a new, truly equitable
membership structure may be implemented?  I believe this is one of the
most critical issues that AERC is facing right now:   the AERC needs more
money to operate, but a lotta members aren't happy with the dues they're
paying already, and the dues are sufficiently high that we will have
trouble enticing new members who are only moderately interested in the
sport.  The Sundowner discount is definitely a step in the right
direction, but only addresses one aspect of the issue.

I am part of the group who worked out the proposal that Teresa presented
to Ridecamp yesterday.  While I don't know that it's perfect, I do believe
it's better than the existing membership structure, which is definitely
not equitable. I would like to see administrative costs of membership
assessed to each adult member on a pro-rata basis, regardless of marital
status, and a discounted membership for juniors available to all juniors,
whether or not their parents are AERC members.

The issue of equality needs to be embraced by the organization and should
form the basis of any changes in the membership/fees structure.  Clearly
the state of AERC's finances is a major focus of the BOD at this time,
which leads me to believe that this is the perfect opportunity for a
complete revamping of the membership/fees structure.  While I would love
to see the single membership fee reduced, I do not mind paying the current
fee (and yes, I have already renewed for 1999 and have received my new
card) as long as I feel that I am paying my share and *only* my share.  I
do not believe that lack of a marriage certificate is sufficient reason
for me to pay more to have my mileage tracked by AERC.  I wholeheartedly
support a reasonable discount for juniors, but not for adults simply
because they are married.

Changing the "family" membership to a "group" membership that is not
dependent on marital status nor blood relation, but rather based solely on
economics (how many people & horses have mileage tracked, how many copies
of the EN are produced & mailed), would be a very important step in the
right direction, and will make it far easier for the AERC to ask the
membership for money, now and in the future.  Prove to us that each member
is contributing equally to the operation of the organization.

Glenda & Lakota
Mobile, AL
AERC # M18819 & H27310
SE Region

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