rossboyer

Should FMCA Allow Towable RVs-- Vote NOW

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annmeris   

We had a fifth wheel (different ones of course) for 17 years.

We got our first Motor-Home this year. The first thing I did was to join FMCA. All those 17 years, I looked at FMCA as an organization I wanted be part of. If towable owners are allowed to join now, it would defeat my reason for joining.

I realize people want to travel with their families, but the whole family doesn’t have to attend rallies. There are many organization that don’t cater to Motorhomes exclusively.

I understand the management feels we’ll have more clout with greater numbers, I didn’t think that’s what this organization is all about.

In my opinion, just like there are Motorcoach only resorts, there is and should be a Motorcoach only organization.

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smithy   
2 hours ago, HayesFamily said:

Bill,

Being the new guy it's obvious that I can't comment on past rallies and past magazines and past stuff. But you said something very relevant which makes me believe that you're absolutely correct.

"Management is SO CONFIDENT" 

Being a corporate Refugee, one of the things that I have experienced in the world of corporate America or anything with the corporate structure, whatever corporate thinks is best, wants to do, or feels is necessary to do ... THEY WILL DO. They will lie to stockholders (ENRON) they will take risks against wise counsels advice and the advice of the general employee population to a point where it becomes dangerous and no way to return back to being profitable (MBNA) and they will do anything to protect upper level management pockets for years to come.

That being said I think that it is overly obvious that the majority of people in the forums are really not happy about towables, not necessarily the towable itself but the idea of towables being part of a motorhome Club. What really scares me is the vast amounts of people that are not in the forums that are members of various chapters. Those chapter officers who are willing to do whatever management says for whatever political gain there maybe can sway votes that we don't see. What scares me even more is the information that they have is probably skewed because they are not on the form hearing the pros and cons. So your corporate structure is going to lie about money and say we're going broke and uninformed people are going to do whatever they can to save the oval, we've already witnessed some risk-taking from FMCA that all of a sudden nobody wants to talk about to the tune of several hundreds of thousands of ddollar; the vast majority is okay because nobody's been prosecuted, and no matter how you look at it many people who have said it are absolutely correct, the fix is in, it was already decided several years ago. So nobody can say that it wasn't done with formality they mail out a ballot which let's be frank and honest, absolutely nobody trust but the people who want towables.

I think more people would have had faith in the board and in the system if an independent company actually tallied the voting and certified it correct. It would have been done electronic and we would have been able to see real-time results but they opted not to do that and I'm gas it was because of the "cost" ... which I'm not dumb by any means, if you can print an addition like a card in an envelope then it was affordable to do with an outside company.

At this point there are several things that can be done because hashing it out over and over is worse than beating a dead horse ... 

1. We can blame the Russians ... And we see where that is going. 

2. We can create chapters with the premise that it is motorhome only and hope we don't get sued for discrimination

3. We walk away from the benefits of FMCA and do like the rest of the population that I've seen in Parks, proudly display the oval but have no real affiliation anymore other than conversation on the forms with our friends.

4. If by chance by some miracle towable RVs get voted down we can all go back to enjoying FMCA for what it was until the next time they come up with a scheme for everybody to get cheesed off. 

FMCA is a member-owned non-profit. Our main goal is not to make as much money as possible. It is to provide members with as much value for their membership while breaking even. That has not happened for years. Our financials are public knowledge. All of the decision makers are non paid elected volunteers. No pockets to line or protect. 

We will absolutely do what our stockholders(members) tell us to do. That is why we are putting this to vote for membership to decide. That is why we have an executive board and governing board.

Chapter officers vote the way the chapter members tell them to. When the vote is done at the governing board, there is not a recording of how each chapter voted. 

No one is lying about our financial situation. Again you can look over financials if you like. 

The ballot is not counted by FMCA. Check the return address on your ballot. It is sent back directly to Mandel and Associates. They are an independent audit firm who only shares results with us. We don't physically handle or see the ballots.

The topic of electronic voting has been brought up many times. Would have loved to do that, but our governing documents forbid it and only allow for paper ballot. We have to follow the governing documents.

 

 

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rpelatt   
On 10/3/2017 at 5:15 PM, smithy said:

The agreement was done before I became Executive Director, so I was not privy to all the details. I can say the intent was never to invest in RVillage. It was booked as a marketing expense, and the auditors insisted it be classified as an investment. 

Thanks for the reply, but you still are not answering my question. As executive director, surely you know the answer as to whether this happened as stated by Dons2346. If it did happen as he stated then no wonder FMCA is in financial trouble. I cannot imagine this was a single isolated use of funds that resulted in a loss. Maybe the real issue should be to re-evaluate how the EB and GB members are appointed and what their qualifications are.  I think Hayes Family is spot on in his comments. After all whether or not FMCA is non profit, it still needs to be run like the large business it is and needs well qualified talent to make that happen. 

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3 hours ago, smithy said:

FMCA is a member-owned non-profit. Our main goal is not to make as much money as possible. It is to provide members with as much value for their membership while breaking even. That has not happened for years. Our financials are public knowledge. All of the decision makers are non paid elected volunteers. No pockets to line or protect. 

We will absolutely do what our stockholders(members) tell us to do. That is why we are putting this to vote for membership to decide. That is why we have an executive board and governing board.

Chapter officers vote the way the chapter members tell them to. When the vote is done at the governing board, there is not a recording of how each chapter voted. 

No one is lying about our financial situation. Again you can look over financials if you like. 

The ballot is not counted by FMCA. Check the return address on your ballot. It is sent back directly to Mandel and Associates. They are an independent audit firm who only shares results with us. We don't physically handle or see the ballots.

The topic of electronic voting has been brought up many times. Would have loved to do that, but our governing documents forbid it and only allow for paper ballot. We have to follow the governing documents.

 

 

Let me apologize again for me the new guy, there are some things I don't no when it comes to the financials from past years. Earlier in this thread way back around page 2 or 3 somewhere it was stated that we are not in financial dire distress or has that changed?

Whether FMCA is for-profit or nonprofit somebody is getting paid to do a job. 100% of our money is not going into a charitable cause or into our membership benefits, some of that money is allocated to salaries cuz that's just the way business works. So we can call it whatever kind of profit we want, the bottom line is there only two kinds of businesses in the world ones that are profitable and ones that are not. So somebody somewhere is making some money and trying to keep a job or if it wouldn't be a great humongous push to change the name and involve towables. If you don't agree with my statement that's fine we can agree to disagree. 

As for chapter officers a greens of vote however their members tell them, unless the membership is going behind closed doors with them or is right there when they write it on the ballot and lick the stair nobody knows for sure. My point behind making a statement about the chapters has everything to do with the lack of participation from various chapters on our forums. Let me Give an example so you'll understand what I need. This  Area chapter in my neck of the woods which I tried to join which by the way, nobody ever called me back ... I know some people there personally and he admitted that he really has no idea or understanding what's going on other than the fact that the chapter gurus or whoever is running it said that this was a good idea that's the way they should vote.

That said I have a sneaky suspicion that the board that is pushing for towables is banking on the ignorance of a lot of our members that do not participate in the forums to hear the argument. It doesn't make it right or wrong but I'm entitled to believe that and quite frankly, so do a lot of other people. You can't discount that because that's not your feeling.

Lastly, there's not a company in the world that does exactly what their stockholders once or their members once because they will quickly tell you if they're going to vote in the "best interest" of the organization whether is or it isn't. There's a little building in Washington DC that shaped like a dome that houses people that do that all the time ... this is really no different. 

At this stage of the game the only thing we can do is hope and pray that the vote is not miscounted, did there is no issues and that there is some honesty among the ranks and we move on. If the vote passes decisions will have to be made across the board, if it doesn't guess what, decisions still have to be made. 

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12 hours ago, aztec7fan said:

"2. Ballots shall be mailed to FMCA’s certified public accountant in an envelope on which the
voting member has signed his or her name and FMCA membership number indicating that the
envelope contains a ballot from a voting member"

This is what is concerning me. Does this mean, any ballots that were sent in a plain envelope, without the FMCA # and an indication that it's a ballot from a voting member are just being thrown out?

Chris G.

f3508s

Fyi, answering my own question, I called MANDEL AND ASSOCIATES, and asked them about the envelopes.  They said they are accepting ALL ballots, no matter if the envelope is noted with the f# and/or stating it contains a ballot.

That's good to know.

Chris G.

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smithy   
2 hours ago, HayesFamily said:

Let me apologize again for me the new guy, there are some things I don't no when it comes to the financials from past years. Earlier in this post way back around page 2 or 3 somewhere it was stated that we are not in financial dire distress or has that changed?

Weather FMCA is for-profit or nonprofit somebody is getting paid to do a job. 100% of our money is not going into a charitable cause or into our membership benefits, some of that money is allocated to salaries cuz that's just the way business works. So we can call it whatever kind of profit we want, the bottom line is there only two kinds of businesses in the world ones that are profitable and ones that are not. So somebody somewhere is making some money and trying to keep a job or if it wouldn't be a great humongous push to change the name and involve towables. If you don't agree with my statement that's fine we can agree to disagree. 

As for chapter officers a greens of vote however their members tell them, unless the membership is going behind closed doors with them or is right there when they write it on the ballot and lick the stair nobody knows for sure. My point behind making a statement about the chapters has everything to do with the lack of participation from various chapters on our forums. Let me Give an example so you'll understand what I need. This  Area chapter in my neck of the woods which I tried to join which by the way, nobody ever called me back ... I know some people there personally and he admitted that he really has no idea or understanding what's going on other than the fact that the chapter gurus or whoever is running it said that this was a good idea that's the way they should vote.

That said I have a sneaky suspicion that the board that is pushing for towables is banking on the ignorance of a lot of our members that do not participate in the forums to hear the argument. It doesn't make it right or wrong but I'm entitled to believe that and quite frankly, so do a lot of other people. You can't discount that because that's not your feeling.

Lastly, there's not a company in the world that does exactly what their stockholders once or their members once because they will quickly tell you if they're going to vote in the "best interest" of the organization whether is or it isn't. There's a little building in Washington DC that shaped like a dome that houses people that do that all the time ... this is really no different. 

At this stage of the game the only thing we can do is hope and pray that the vote is not miscounted, did there is no issues and that there is some honesty among the ranks and we move on. If the vote passes decisions will have to be made across the board, if it doesn't guess what, decisions still have to be made. 

I have been here four years total, 1 in this position, and there has not been a positive financial year. Didn't go back and look at the post you referenced, but it is incorrect.

I am paid to do a job along with the other staff members. My point was I nor any other staff has a final say in anything. Non-paid elected members, IE the executive board and governing board, decide the direction and have final decision on issues that we are discussing. They have no financial gain in making those decisions. My job is to execute their directives.

No one from the chapter called you back? If you want to send me an email at csmith@fmca.com, I would be glad to reach out on your behalf. The chapters have meetings and discuss issues like this, so it's a shame if the chapter members are letting the chapter president decide their vote at the governing board level.

We can agree to disagree on the board pushing for towables. They see an unsustainable financial situation, and have provided a possible solution. Membership has the final say. If they don't care to vote, that is a shame. This is not the only solution. Just one that was presented.

I think Area VP's and the executive board would disagree with the statement about them making decisions contrary to what membership wants. These individuals visit chapters and hold area rallies all the time. They take their jobs seriously, and they are all members, so I see no reason they would not have the members best interest in mind. Their decisions effect them as well as you.

We pay an audit firm a lot of money, and they do this all day every day, so I doubt there would be a miscount.

I don't want anyone to take my responses as argumentative. I want to be informative and answer questions. Felt a need to step in to clarify remarks I was seeing in this thread.

 

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smithy   

Hello all- Just received a call from Mandel and Associates.

A member contacted them trying to push for the vote tally so far.

Please do not call them directly.

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Chris,

We appreciate your comments to inform us of the facts.

Would a weekly tally placed each Friday on the home page on FMCA.com promote and encourage more members to vote?  I would like to see yea and nay reported. 

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dons2346   
3 hours ago, rossboyer said:

Chris,

We appreciate your comments to inform us of the facts.

Would a weekly tally placed each Friday on the home page on FMCA.com promote and encourage more members to vote?  I would like to see yea and nay reported. 

I would not like to see a running tally. Depending on the way the votes are swinging, a running tally could convince some members that there is no use in voting and they won't

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manholt   

Please, no running tally!

Having been away from forum since Tuesday AM and reading all comments, including Brett, Smithy, etc and questions asked....I have to include this again, so there will not (I hope) be any miss understandings!

FMCA is a "Not for Profit Corporation".  Money in/out = same.  We who set policy and run FMCA are all volunteers!  We do not get a salary for doing so!  I'm on the GB as a National Director and I don't get my expenses re-imbursed for being at the Annual Summer Convention!  The EB does.   FMC is a "For Profit Corporation" and pays salaries.  No body I know of is going to work for free every day!

Brett, not saying this because of friendship!  I DO NOT WANT YOU JOB AS MODERATOR !  You're doing now and have in the past 6 years, done an excellent job of an impossible situation!  Yes, I don't like to be deleted, or put on time out....why?  I'm not PC!

Smithy, keep up the good work....Lord knows, it's got to be frustrating at times!

Dons2346.  Time to cool it.  You and I know, there is more to come after Elkhart...good luck !

Back to OP!

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smithy   
2 hours ago, manholt said:

Please, no running tally!

Having been away from forum since Tuesday AM and reading all comments, including Brett, Smithy, etc and questions asked....I have to include this again, so there will not (I hope) be any miss understandings!

FMCA is a "Not for Profit Corporation".  Money in/out = same.  We who set policy and run FMCA are all volunteers!  We do not get a salary for doing so!  I'm on the GB as a National Director and I don't get my expenses re-imbursed for being at the Annual Summer Convention!  The EB does.   FMC is a "For Profit Corporation" and pays salaries.  No body I know of is going to work for free every day!

Brett, not saying this because of friendship!  I DO NOT WANT YOU JOB AS MODERATOR !  You're doing now and have in the past 6 years, done an excellent job of an impossible situation!  Yes, I don't like to be deleted, or put on time out....why?  I'm not PC!

Smithy, keep up the good work....Lord knows, it's got to be frustrating at times!

Dons2346.  Time to cool it.  You and I know, there is more to come after Elkhart...good luck !

Back to OP!

I will not be doing a running tally. Have no issue sharing total number of ballots sent in. As of today 4,049 have been received.

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F375818   

Encourage all members to vote NO on this amendment.

A YES vote might as well be another vote for disbanding FMCA in favor of Good Sam because the organization would only "mirror" GS Club.

Think the Round Bottom Road CG is hard to get into now??  Wait until all the trailers show up!!! 

 

Jaye Brewer F375818

2006 itasca Meridian

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Glad to see the topic on towables is up and going again.  As a long time member of FMCA and have been to several rallies, I am interested in seeing where this is going.

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Occasionally I get emails from FMCA in regards to upcoming reunions or advertisements for resorts or caravans.  Can FMCA send out an email asking "Have you voted yet?". With info on the vote?  

Any other out of the box ideas on getting more votes?

Chris G.

F3508s

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Isaaac1   

Smithy, it is great to see you participating here, and I do hope you continue to communicate with all of us even after the vote is over.

As I have stated previously I am against allowing towables full membership as I feel it would take the focus off of motorhomes.

Having said that, if this vote fails, are there and new plans and initiatives in place to try to recruit more / younger members? 

Or is the attitude one of throwing in the towel and going down with the ship if this vote fails?

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Isaaac1,

But people that have a towable are young! That is why they want to change the organization, only OLD people have motor homes. See if the towables are allowed in we'll reduce the average age of the FMCA from 71 down to 32.

Seriously, what initiative has been undertaken to recruit and retain members? So far as I know virtually none. OK, at the large RV shows we have a booth. Do we send invites to all new owners of Motor Homes? Do we have a one year free trial given out by the manufacturers or dealers?

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Isaaac1   

I am 48 and own a class A motorhome, there is a guy on the online owners forum for my model that just bought one this week, and while I am not sure his exact age I know he is younger than I am and has 4 year old twins.  The problem is not that there are not younger people that own motorhomes, the problem is there is little in the FMCA to attract them.

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RAYIN   
11 hours ago, Isaaac1 said:

Smithy, it is great to see you participating here, and I do hope you continue to communicate with all of us even after the vote is over.

As I have stated previously I am against allowing towables full membership as I feel it would take the focus off of motorhomes.

Having said that, if this vote fails, are there and new plans and initiatives in place to try to recruit more / younger members? 

Or is the attitude one of throwing in the towel and going down with the ship if this vote fails?

On Oct 5 Smithy said: " This is not the only solution. Just one that was presented. "

 

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manholt   

RAYIN.  That's scary by it's self...wonder what the other ideas are?  Also, wonder why it was not brought to the attention off the GB?  Nothing can happen without us! 

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