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Club Dues

Posted: Thu Nov 03, 2011 9:48 pm
by JerryFreilich
Those of you who have paid club dues know that SMUG is not a financial powerhouse. In fact, we are just barely solvent. The club makes a donation to the folks who host our meetings. We've had travel expenses for speakers in the past year. And then there's the cost of our refreshments, insurance for our equipment, and the cost of the Sequim Technology and Media Fair mentioned in another posting.

In trying to find the politically correct solution on dues, SMUG's situation is analogous to the national dilemma. But unlike our hapless congress, we have in this case an enlightened despot capable of on-the-fly decisions. We could reduce entitlements (no refreshments!!) or we can raise revenue (new taxes!) After some contemplation I've decided to raise the yearly dues to $24 but with the following conditions.

First, club members will be expected to pay their dues by Feb 15, 2012. Any continuing club members who pay by that deadline may do so at a reduced rate of $20. So pay up front and save $4. Previously subscribed members who miss that deadline will be expected to pay the full $24. Newcomers who join the club during the year will continue to have their dues pro-rated monthly... with all memberships being for the calendar year.

At last night's meeting in Port Angeles (Nov 2) it was suggested that I make this suggestion to the membership and that we discuss it at the Sequim meeting in December. So consider this my suggested course of action. I will of course entertain discussion and the final decision will be made at the Sequim meeting December 7.

Re: Club Dues

Posted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:01 am
by Stephen Hart
How about an address to send checks to?

I think the dues increase is a good idea. The tech fair seemed like very good exposure for SMUG, and a nice chance for some of the public to see Macs in action.

Re: Club Dues

Posted: Sat Nov 05, 2011 11:08 pm
by JerryFreilich
Have been thinking about this since posting my first (above) and have also begun to wonder whether we need to post someone at the door to check member status. This would be the way the Sequim PC Group does things ... where you would have a yearly membership or a "suggested donation" for attending a single meeting. When this was suggested to me years ago I felt it was unwelcoming and off-putting. Your ideas about this now?

Re: Club Dues

Posted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 10:29 am
by Richard Serkes
I've been an active member of SMUG for not quite 10 years now. During that time we have never required people to pay dues to attend meetings nor should we. I like the openness of our group and to "post someone at the door to check member status" is anathema to our spirit of freely sharing and giving all things Apple and techie. We would lose members, participation and create all kinds of ill will.

If we're having trouble paying our bills (and so far we've never gone in the red) then there are cuts that can be made. I can think of several. But voluntary payment of dues and an open door policy has served us well and can continue to do so.

Re: Club Dues

Posted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 2:28 pm
by georgeandjolie
I agree with Richard.

To go a step in the suggestions request: Ditch the refreshments. Members can bring their own. Still, however, allow the 10 minutes or so for socializing/networking.

Re: Club Dues

Posted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 5:55 pm
by JerryFreilich
I think the refreshments are on their way out as we speak.... Nice though they were.

Re: Club Dues

Posted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 6:03 pm
by Richard Serkes
We don't need to drop the refreshments, just modify what's being done. Coffee is cheap, but the real nice cookies are pricey. Why not a big box of Oreos? Everybody likes Oreos and the COSTCO size boxes are cheap.

There are other areas where we can be frugal but that's for a different thread.

Re: Club Dues

Posted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 7:50 pm
by Stephen Hart
Stephen Hart wrote:How about an address to send checks to?
Not to beat a dead horse, but there might be some members reading this thread who--like me--would be happy to kick in the $25.

Re: Club Dues

Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 3:50 pm
by Jim Ude
Refreshments are nice. They don't have to be fancy/expensive. Melissa has done a wonderful job! I would hope increasing the "taxes" to $24 would be acceptable and at the end of the year if the pot is again flush we could adjust downward the following year. Kinda nice to be in control of the taxes.

Re: Club Dues

Posted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 8:07 pm
by JerryFreilich
Hate to snap a wet towel... but the issue here is not the cost of the goodies. We've got that covered in our massive, bulging treasury. The problem is to get a person or two people to simply APPEAR as if by magic at each meeting. Melissa has done this with aplomb. As Woody Allen said, "Eighty percent of success is simply showing up." In theory this seems simple. In practice it takes determination and perspicacity.