Volume XIII Number 2 - February 2004


So sez Punxsatawney Phil, and I believe him! As we buckle down to the workbench and get back to some long overdue orders, we pause and reflect ..... NAH! That's too fooey for words.

Got some interesting new drone reeds in today - Croziers from Australia, a REAL Rocket clone down to the 'nose cone' and all. We'll have a report on them for next month. Meanwhile, for those who want them, they're $99.95 - until the US Dollar drops some more!

Speaking of which, the Pound was $1.86 and climbing as of Feb. 9, so don't expect any deals from Scotland, Australia, or Canadia in the near future! Our new prices will be up on everything by the end of the month; meanwhile, call for current prices! I also expect another rise in pipe prices in April, so it's BOHICA time!


Well, I'm back from the AGM and here's a short summary of what happened along with some comentary on the financial highlights of the WUSPBA.  

1.  The WUSPBA Code of Conduct was not incorporated into the bylaws.

2.  Soloists dues are now due the same date as bands dues.

3.  Proxy voting was not approved.

4.  Absentee voting was not approved for the election of officers.

5.  Bands may still vote on soloist contest rule changes.

6.  Contest sponsors may vote on all contest rule changes.

7.  Bands still have 7 votes, while all other members have only 1 vote.

8.  Absentee Voting on proposed changes to the Bylaws and Contest rules was not   approved.

9.  There are now Adjudicator Memebers that have a vote.

10.  Bands may, or may not play off the contest field.

11.  Bands may challenge up one grade, unless of course they're not Grade I.  

Stu Baker was elected President.  Elaine Hoffman is the new Executive Secretary. Lise Nelson is the Registrar.  Good Luck to these new officers !   

At the AGM, the Treasurer made a presentation entiltled "2003 Financial Highlights". This was supposed to be the Treasurer's Report, but it was hardly a balance sheet, actually it was more like what someone trying to work a "con" would present.  As close as can be determined from this report, The WUSPBA had a total Income in 2003 of $27,729.00.  Expenses though were $38,429.00!  In other words, the WUSPBA spent $10,700.00 more than it earned.  As of 12-31-03, the cash on hand for the WUSPBA was only $487.00. 

In fact, the WUSPBA, an organization comprised of 551 indiviual members, 61 bands, and 22 contest sponsors almost went broke!  Now granted, some membership dues have arrived since 12-31-03, but there are still the expenses for the AGM, which as of now are on Stu Baker's credit cards.  About $38,275.00 should come in from the membership in the form of dues, and about $3000.00 from contest sanctioning fees, for a toltal expected income in 2004 of about $41,275.  The proposed budget for 2004 is $30,395.40.  This leaves about $10,879.60 as a surplus to be spent most likely on the Las Vegas Champioship Contest, IF the proposed budget is not exceeded.       

Last year, the WUSPBA spent $11,780.00 on the Las Vegas Championship.  The WUSPBA's income from the Las Vegas Championship was $7794.00.  So really, the WUSPBA lost $3,986.00.  To cover this loss, $5100.00 from the WUSPBA general account was transferred, which leaves a positive balance of $1114.00 for the 2004 Championships, plus $1000.00 alloted to it from the 2004 budget.  This total sum of $2114.00 then is supposed to cover the expenses for a contest that cost nearly $12,000.00 in 2003 to put on.  The Budget Surplus of 10,879.60, plus the $ 2114.00 which is a total of  $12,993.60 will cover the expenses for the 2004 Championships. So now we know the true reasons for the dues and fees increases:  To put on the Las Vegas Championships, and not to cover rising costs as we were all told at the 2003 AGM.  In other words, the Executive Committee had a "hidden agenda", in raising the dues and sanctioning fees.  The newly elected Executive Committee will continue with this deception as it continues to plan for our next "Championship" contests.         

So, $13,000.00 will be likely be spent to hold a contest that only a very small fraction of the WUSPBA membership will be invitited to attend.  There will still be two classes of contests this coming year, those that get you "qualified", and the those that are just for what, (?), practice!  The WUSPBA Champions could be soloists or bands that win at one contest to get "qualified", and that happen to win again at the Las Vegas Championships, and are then the "Champions" having won only two contests out of 22, or more contests held and sanctioned by the WUSPBA.  How I long for the "Old System" where all contests and contest sponsors were equal; where soloists and bands were encouraged to attend as many contests as possible; where soloists and bands had to win or place in the top five at as many contests as possible; and most importantly, where it didn't cost the WUSPBA $11,000.00 to $13,000.00 each year to announce who were the year end "Champions".  But I also long to see an actual "Balance Sheet", and auditied Financial Statement as well.  I know the IRS will get tax forms, and I'd really like to see them as well.  But It'll be a cold day in Hell if ever I do see these things.  

Ol' Black Part 

until next month....

back to...AND THE NEW YEAR...