Answers to the "Issues of Concern"

Hi All,

This note is in response to Issues of concern brought up at the Dec. 2015 Board Meeting. There was a lot to digest and unravel. One of my duties at the Veteran Administration was being nominated and sent for training for membership to the Title 38 Disciplinary Appeals Board. When an appeal was made based on judgement action of a supervisor my job was to re-evaluate the judgement and did it fit the action. The federal guideline of the Tort was used. Four elements had to be shown before a successful Tort claim . 1. Duty (responsibility)2. Breech of Duty, 3. Cause 4. Damages. We are a small club of volunteers and what I was looking for in regard to damages, theft, personal damage, conflict of interest, if damages proven how did they effect the club.

Please read prior to Dec. 29 meeting, and share your thoughts. We have the use of the Foundation For The Pure Spanish Horse, building located one block west of I-25 on Central. Turn north on ELM and the building (house) on left. Parking across the street. (Just behind "Gravey" a restaurant). 6:30PM

NMDA Board,

Review of issues of concern presented by Anne Sparks at the Dec. 82015 NMDA Board meeting.

1. Misrepresentation of the 2015 election dates thereby violating Article IV section 4a regarding members right to vote.

Article IV section 4a of NMDA Bylaws state: Membership rights and privileges shall include: a.The right to vote in election of officers and on any other matter presented to the membership for their approval(with family and business membership each having a single vote).

Review: NMDA Regular Meeting Minutes Sept. 1, 2015, Old Business Paragraph: "Nominating Committee, Some nominations have been submitted, with the deadline 18 Sept. Ballots will be mailed Oct. 15". These minutes were approved by the Board at the October 6 Board Meeting. Article X Election Process: The nominating Committee (Art. VII I#4 est. committee August.) Open nominations Sept. 1 though Oct. 15. Ballots mailed by November 15.

Duty of the President (Article VI, #4) , review of Duty 4a-f show no breach of duty. When question asked to nomination committee reference to the By-laws should have been made then. NO one was denied nomination, ballot was constructed and mailed before recommended date as per By Laws. Ballot included write-in section for voters to add additional candidates. NO one was denied their vote. There was no breech of Duty, no cause of harm to the election process, no damages.

Recommendation: NO further action required.

2. Closed nominations one month early without approval of the board, violating Article IV 4b regarding members right to hold office. Review: Minutes Aug. 2 2015 meeting noted nominations committee assembled: Anne Sparks board member chair, Kathleen Martin and Kathy Mueller agreed to serve on the committee again. Review of August, Sept. minutes show no statement by the President closing nominations one month early. Only reference as noted in #1 which stated deadline 18 Sept. Ballots will be mail out Oct. 15. which was over ridden by the By-Laws as noted by the election committee and all nominations accepted, write in nominations available, everyone had opportunity to vote.

There was no Breech of Duty, no cause, no harm to the election process, no damages.

Recommendations: NO further action required

Consult By- Laws regarding all operations NMDA.

3. Dismissed appointed the Western chair prior to term end without cause in violation of Article IV section 4B regarding members right to hold office and art. VI sec 2 regarding chairs serving the same term as elected officers. This is also a usurption for the responsibilities of the board (Art. VIII section 1 " The Board can vote to dismiss A Chairperson".

Review: In response to Western Dressage Chair, Sandy Perez's congratulatory e-mail to President on December 1, the President/President Elect, explained that the current term of Western Dressage chair would not expire until January 1. President’s response included the statement that Nance McMannus was being considered for 2016 Chair, hoped and encouraged Sandy to continue to work with NMDA and expressed her continued support for Sandy's and the Southern WD members' efforts. Both emails, including the initial email from WD Chair to President and President's response, were conversations of support and cooperation for one another.

Review: Nominations for 2016 Western Dressage committee chair will follow the guideline set forth Art. VI #4.

Recommendations: NO further action required.

4. Granted cash prize without board approval violating Art. II sec 3 regarding distributed earning without authorization.

Review: Standing rules XVIII, section Schooling show prizes: The Board decided that maximum $100 could be spent on prizes at schooling shows. If more is requested it should be discussed at a Board Meeting (Bd 9/7/10) . The prize in question was a high point junior award at the Nov. 2015 schooling show approved by the Show Manager the high point categories . Sum of $50. Because Standing Rules are approved by the Board, there was Board Approval.

Article II sec 3 explains guidelines for which corporations moneys can't be spent. This sum was under IRS earning requires additional documentation and doesn't fall in any criteria as mentioned in NMDA Bylaws,Art. II section 3.

Recommendations: NO further action required.

5.Lied to the board about NMDA sanctioned event (members potluck) thereby not inviting members in violation of article IV sec 4d regarding members rights to participate in all NMDA functions.

Review: The 2014 Pilates Clinic included a "Lecture/Potluck" in which the clinician, Janice Dulac, presented a lecture the Friday night before the clinic. In 2015, no such lecture was offered (as per flyer & registrations forms). This may be what is being referred to as being "lied" about.

The event in question was titled "April 24 Pilates Potluck", (not member potluck) and was a private party held at a private residence. A mass email invitation was sent out on April 15 to participants who had registered for the May 2-3, 2015 Pilates Clinic,including non-members. NO NMDA money was spent on this event. A private party held at a private residence requires no NMDA approval. Art. IV sec 4 paragraph d. refers to "meetings held or presented by the Association".

Recommendations: NO further action required.

6. Made changes to the Standing Rules contrary to the Standing Rules directions which were then submitted to the board as approved by the committee violating Art.II sec 4 regarding fair representation to all members.

Review: The President appointed an Ad Hoc committee to review and amend the Standing rules. (NMDA Bylaws Art. IX).

NMDA Bylaws Art.V, sec.7 states: “The Board may make, alter, amend or repeal the standing rules of the Association and may recommend changes, additions or deletions in the BY-Laws which are then subject to the approval of the general membership”.

The President did present the partial Standing Rules recommendations of the ad hoc committee to the Board at the March 3, 2015 Board Meeting. (At that time the committee had not addressed changes to the Schooling Show Rules which are part of the Standing rules nor had SR XXII been addressed by the committee). The recommendations were voted on, recorded in the minutes which were then approved by the Board at the April meeting. In addition, the President sent out an email to all members of the Board on April 6, 2015 with the retyped & formatted changes. At the April 7 Board Meeting few members of the board, and no members of the ad hoc committee commented on the changes at that time. Currently the Standing Rules on the website show that the last official changes that were made to the Standing Rules was February 7, 2015.

The committee didn't complete the review of the standing rules in this calendar year. The board never completed vote on standing rule changes or review of By-Laws. Thus for 2015 no changes occurred to the standing rules or the By-Laws.

There was no breech of duty Art. VI sec. a, no cause of damages, no damages since nothing was changed the Association standing rules, By-Laws unchanged didn't complete review and (in case of By-Laws) no general membership vote.

What might be referred to in this issue is an email sent to the ad hoc Committee (of which the President was a member) on June 30 requesting that the committee finish the Standing Rules and Bylaws amendment process, including an attached copy of the Standing rules with suggested changes (highlighted in yellow). The intent of this email was to urge the committee to complete this amendment process as it had continually been tabled.

Recommendations: No further action required

7. Did not promote events when directed to do so by the board in violation of article II sec 4a and c.

Review: NMDA Bylaws Article II(Purpose and Objectives), Sec. 4a states: "4. The objectives of the Association include, but are not limited to, the following: a. to educate and create opportunities for it's members and other interested parties (including individuals and other organizations), to develop skill and excellence in dressage so that they may progress with the schooling of their horses and themselves. 4.c. to encourage, promote and conduct exhibitions, shows, clinic, seminars and other educational events designed to develop the potential in rider and horse. " These Bylaws address the Organization, not one specific member or Board member and thus should not apply to this situation. Furthermore, Review of presidents Monthly Messages, NMDA calendar, and mass emails to members include promotion of : Pilates Clinic, Trainers Show Case, Lisa Wilcox Clinic, Schooling Shows, Rated Shows all presented in calendar. The president attended every schooling show except one in which Vice President was present, attended all clinics, attended all Recognized Shows except one in which Vice President was present. Trainers Show Case 2015 the club was represented with booth, flyers, and picture board.

Recommendations: No further action required.

8. Did not attend or appoint an official attendee in her stead for official events violating article VI sec 4e representing the association.

Review: NMDA Bylaws Article VI, Sec. 4e states: "to represent the Association with all organizations and be the official Association spokesperson before the public". The Bylaws do not state which organizations or mention specific events. This charge needs more detail ie what official events. NMDA events and Recognized Shows were attended by President (see above, #7). NMDA delegate was assigned for USDF conf. 2015. Review President's Monthly Message 2015.

Recommendations: No further action required

No Theft, no personal damages, no conflict of interest with shown profit noted in this review. However methods of communication need improvement to improve the function of the Board and the Club.

Reviewer: John Collins