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chindog   

When I joined FMCA a couple of years ago, it was because I wanted to be part of an organization that was geared toward motorcoaches.  After having owned a few pull behinds, I had joined Good Sam's many years ago.  But after I bought my coach, I needed an organization for my type of RV and joined FMCA.  When I first heard of the proposal to change FMCA to allow non-motorhomes, I was very much opposed.  I'm not a member of any FMCA chapters, and as a fulltimer I get the FMCA magazine online, but rarely look at it.  So, it was late in the process when I heard about the change.  I did my best to convince my fellow coach owning FMCA members to vote against the proposal to change the core meaning of the organization.  And, for what it was worth, just about everyone I spoke with agreed with me that the change was a bad idea, and they also voted NO. 

Then the results of the vote came in.  The numbers were shocking to me.  Out of about ~71k members, only ~10k voted.  Of the ~10k that voted, about 1/3 agreed with me.  That is about 4% of the membership that was thinking like me.  4%.  Let that sink in for a moment.

 

Apathy is a sad thing, but those people who didn't vote had ample opportunity.  They simply chose to not vote.  Of the members who did vote, a resounding majority felt they wanted to change the direction of their club.  It's not my club.  I don't own it.  I am just one member of the whole.  So I came to the logical conclusion that the vast majority of the club I belong to wanted a change of direction.

 

How can I be mad at what most of the active membership wants to do?  I can't.  I just accept it.  I am still a part of this club, and this vote won't change that.  I just had to accept that what the club decided to do was not what I was expecting, and just because it's not what I wanted, it's not the end of the world.

 

So, I am over my mad.  I'm not frothing at the mouth and stomping away in anger. I am at peace again.  And I still have my F#, and will probably be joining a chapter soon.

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jleamont   

Mike, well written. We weren't mad, just disappointed. No longer members either as a result of that and the lack of benefits (including chapters) or better suited benefits for part time travelers, working full time with a family. We don't have any chapters that are a good fit for us in PA, if that were the case we would probably stay onboard. Saddened by this as we truly believed in the organization and what it stood for. We are planning to relocate residence in a few years, I will revisit chapters in that area then (as long as the organization didn't turn into a mess with the trailers on board and still has focus on both lines), if there is a fit then we will renew, fingers crossed.

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I am not mad, just disappointed.  I cast my vote with my checkbook and I will not be renewing my membership.  If new benefits come down the road that would make this membership valuable to me again I can rejoin at that time and get my F192987 back again.  They stopped sending a magazine a year or so back anyway so the last year was just a donation.

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pamkay   
1 hour ago, BillAdams said:

I am not mad, just disappointed.  I cast my vote with my checkbook and I will not be renewing my membership.  If new benefits come down the road that would make this membership valuable to me again I can rejoin at that time and get my F192987 back again.  They stopped sending a magazine a year or so back anyway so the last year was just a donation.

Hi, Bill. FMCA still sends members a monthly magazine, unless they specifically request to place the print copy on hold in favor of reading the digital edition. I checked the records, and your magazine wasn't on hold. We looked at the April and May label files as examples, and labels were prepared to send the magazine to your mail forwarding address. Perhaps you had requested that the mail forwarding provider not forward periodicals to you?  In any case, I'm sorry you missed out on receiving the magazine. Pamela Kay, Director of Communications, Publishing.

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ISPJS   

Mike, I agree with everything you said.  Having just joined a few months ago I guess I wasn't as vested so the way the vote turned out didn't "upset" me, it just made me take another hard look at the value and importance for us to continue membership in FMCA.   As a full timing retired couple the different local clubs didn't really peak our interest.  It was more about belonging to a motor coach only organization that would tailor their benefit/discount programs toward us, and not just RVers in general.  We hoped any FMCA publication would be more interesting to what type of RVing we are doing, and not just RVing in general.  

We live in a world of constant change, 99% of which is driven by dollars.  It seems to me that FMCA is no different and has went from a special RV group that had a lot to offer a select group, to just another large catch-all camping group that will have a little something for everyone.

In the next few months I think many motor coach members will be trying to determine if that "little something" that FMCA will be offering in the future will be worth the dues.  

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Bill and Joe,

I understand fully your disappointment and respect your decisions to not renew and step away from FMCA.

My take on this is different though.  To me, being part of an organization goes both ways.  What can the organization provide me and what, if any, can I provide the organization.

For the Forums, there are only a small amount members that really contribute with sage advice and ideas.

You two are at the top of the list.  Bill with your knowledge of electronics and the open road.  And Joe with your knowledge of mechanical systems and ability to reach-out to other members (like Keon).

Please reconsider leaving FMCA.....I for one believe you are needed.

Blake

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jleamont   

Blake, I'll still be on the Forums. I have always been one to help another when I can, that wont change.

We have made some good friends on here alone, sadly none have been made other than on the forums as the current FMCA footprint and chapter footprint isn't geared toward working folks let alone families.

The chapter concept really left a bad taste in my mouth a few years ago that almost made us walkaway then. I am hoping that the change in residency in a few years will shine some new light on those.

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tcolburn   

Couple of comments.

First, deciding “yes” or “no” on the proposal was not so easy—thanks in large part to the thoughtful discussion here on the Forum. There were a lot of considerations we never thought of before seeing them addressed by others. I vacillated a lot and so did my wife and several of our friends. One procedural issue we had was what to do when the two of us did not agree, since we only had one vote for our F#. I imagine others may have had this concern too, and maybe that was part of the low voter turnout. (BTW, DW and I did reach agreement eventually and got our vote sent in...)

Second, apropos chapter membership and governance, this whole process illustrates the need to examine the organizational structure to ensure that every member is fairly represented. I don’t think that there has been any intentional effort to exclude non-chapter members, but from many of the comments here, I can see how some would get that impression. There are several possible models for national/chapter structure (I belong to some other organizations that address this in various ways) and FMCA might well want to establish a committee or something to investigate whether some sort of restructuring might better serve all its members. If this happens, I hope that the accumulated wisdom here would be part of the conversation.

And I’ll finish with a chapter comment. When we joined FMCA as newbies a few years ago, we didn’t know anything about chapters. Shortly afterward, though, we got an invitation to join a local chapter, and did so. When we attended our first outing, we discovered a whole new group of lifelong friends we hadn’t known we had! Our chapter is most interested in being together and having a good time: no cliques, no politics, just friendship and a welcoming attitude. For us, this is the face of FMCA.

Best, Tim C.

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Isaaac1   

I too was against this change, right now I am taking a wait and see attitude, and just renewed yesterday for one year, I will re-evaluate things in 12 months and see what FMCA has to offer then.  One thing that it no longer offers is being a group exclusively devoted to the interest of motor coach owners, which was the main reason I joined to begin with.

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