MEETING MINUTES FOR CNYR SCCA, WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 12, 2016
CALL TO ORDER: The meeting was called to order at 7:12 p.m. by R.E. Ed Leubner.
R.E. REPORT: Ed Leubner welcomed all to our October meeting. He then asked for a motion to accept the September meeting minutes as they appear on our web-site. Mike Donofrio so moved, Karl Hughes seconded, motion carried.
Ed asked for a moment of silence for CNYR member William "Lee" Hidy who passed away in Hospice on October 1st.
Lee as he was known to all was a 53 year SCCA member and was involved in just about all activities that SCCA had over the years. A card for the family was provided for members to sign.
Lee's obituary requested that in-lieu of donations or flowers that people go out and have a good time in his honor, so we honored Lee by enjoying pizza and wings at the meeting.
Funeral services will be Thursday the 13th at St. Matthew's Episcopal Church in Liverpool.
Mike Donofrio made a motion to formally re-name our SOLO Enduro event to "The Lee Hidy Enduro" and for 2017 to make it 5 minute sessions as Lee had set up in years passed. Ed Heffron seconded, motion passed unanimously.
Ed asked Rex Franklin as head of our Nominating Committee if he had contacted prospective candidates for office and Rex said he had and with the exception of Bob Holcomb who is not running for Secretary due to a full time move out of state. Rex said a slate is ready.
Ed and the membership presented Secretary Bob Holcomb with a regional plaque to recognize his years as Secretary and for helping represent CNYR in F&C at various tracks around the country. Bob thanked everyone very much and most certainly was not expecting such a nice gift from the members.
Ed said that since we had two guest speakers, SCCA Chairman of the Board of Directors and our Area 10 Governor John Walsh and longtime SCCA Steward and current candidate for Area 10 Governor Earl Hurlbut, we would forego our regular specialty reports.
John Walsh: John said both terms expire at the end of December and the past 3 plus years have been very interesting and often challenging.
August saw the resignation of SCCA CEO Lisa Noble and a search is underway to find a suitable replacement.
John said one of the challenges is to establish and define roles of those holding positions at National in Topeka.
Another challenge is reviewing the By-Laws of regions to see if they follow the By-Laws guideline of National. This review will start with the Giant Regions which often have 2,000 or more members and to make sure all members are treated equally especially when dealing with voting rights.
Regions need to be checked to make sure they have proper IRS 990 fillings and corporate documentation.
John said he attended the SOLO Nationals in Lincoln for ten days and although there was a very good turnout with over 1,300 entrants, he didn't notice many from New York State. The weather was dry until Friday when it rained. For 2017 they will once again be at Lincoln.
John also attended the SCCA Runoffs at Mid-Ohio, which he said had warm weather with a slightly lower entrant count that in some years. Next year the Runoffs will be at Indy while the Rally Cross championship will be in Des Moines.
QUESTIONS: Scott Newton asked if National has worked on timing applications for SOLO.
John said that a Tech leader is needed as we are behind on tech and National doesn't have the staff or funds available at this time. An accounting study needs to be started which will include investigating labor costs.
It was pointed out by Scott and Mike Donofrio that the National web-site can be difficult to navigate and John said that there are two data bases, which may not match and said that Member Services is currently understaffed and underfunded.
John mentioned the L3C class which is for working with non-profits. The Board is working to help smaller regions with drafting By-Laws or updating By-Laws to meet National guidelines.
Ed Leubner mentioned that our region has been trying to update our By-Laws to include the use of electronic media and that the going has been slow and difficult.
Jay Cartini asked if there was a task force to review Regional By-Laws for example develop a "template"? John said that as mentioned earlier, they plan to start reviewing with the top few Jumbo Regions and work their way down.
Mark Mangicaro asked if we should wait on working on revisions of our By-Laws and John answered, "No" that the main issue is to follow National regarding membership and voting rights.
Mike Donofrio asked if there were suggestions to help smaller regions grow and if there were any specific reasons that some were able to grow while others, including CNYR have basically remained stagnant.
John said that there is a need for more support of local regions to help them develop their membership base and that National should treat each member as a part of a marketing team, which they currently are not and that there is hope to reactivate an office to directly support reginal activity.
Leo Sawyer asked if programs like "Track Night" have helped bring in new members and John said that will be reviewed either at the end of 2016 or at the start of 2017.
Karl Hughes mentioned that as a driver it can be difficult to obtain a competition license vs. some of the other organizations, including Chump Car. Track time was also an issue, as SCCA events have become increasingly expensive for relatively short track time vs. Chump Car where there can be 6 hours or more of track time for less money. That led to a short discussion on Club Racing Experience leading into Bracket Racing.
John acknowledged that we now have fewer club racers that members running SOLO.
Scott Newton asked if John was aware of any changes in the availability of the Seneca Army Depot for SOLO events now that there is new ownership. John said he has heard nothing on it. Leo Sawyer said he believes the new owner is being approached by other groups regarding SOLO.
At this point John Walsh turned the speaking chores over to Earl Hurlbut.
Earl said he was pleased to be at our meeting and gave us a quick rundown of his resume which included his turn as Chief Steward for the Eastern US Majors program in 2015. He enjoyed the fact that if there were driver issues he could address them directly with each driver and he felt that worked well.
Earl said that Lee Hidy had guided him in entering his first driver school back in the day and that Rex Franklin was a long term acquaintance. Earl said he was very sad over the recent loss of Lee.
He recently attended a SOLO event at the former Rich Stadium/former Ralph Wilson Stadium/ now New Era Field in Orchard Park which had approximately 90 entrants. He said for the future both as a revenue and participant source, club activities such as SOLO make take precedent over club racing.
On the humorous side, Earl acknowledged that we provided chicken wings at the meeting that were "almost" as good as certain famous locations in Buffalo.
His most important power point, VOTE, send in your ballot for Area 10 Governor.
Rex Franklin introduced Herm Naumann, a former Porsche racer back in the day who is giving thought to entering vintage events in a Formula Vee.
All specialty reports, old and new business and the 50/50 were tabled until the November meeting and in honor of Lee Hidy, our usual and customary "I make a motion to adjourn" person, no motion was offered and the meeting thus ended on that silent note.
Bob Holcomb, Secretary.