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On the subject of regional representation...

 

Thinking through it, I too think that the makeup of the RAAus board should be purely skills based rather than regionally based. Being basically a national aviation regulator operating under national laws I'm struggling to think of any way that they could favour a certain state or region with what they do. If for example a SE Qld power-block developed in a skills based board is there any way they could favour Qld pilots? Is there any way a board could funnel money into a certain region and what possible advantage could that be?

 

 

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Are these particular meetings and votes minuted? I note that minutes of the in-person board meetings are posted on the website; but there is no record of board meetings in between the in-person meetings.

18(ii) provides that "Board meetings other than those referred to in sub-section (i) above may be conducted by electronic means." It offers no dispensation for duties imposed on the Secretary by 14B

 

However, there's nothing to stop a friendly board member from re-broadcasting notice of board meetings on a site like this. How does that work with Board meetings?

The face-to-face meetings are well publicised as an adjunct to the AGM and the other compulsory General Meeting. Not sure how you could "attend" an electronic Board Meeting.

 

. . . the next step - if you would be so inclined - would be for a board member (perhaps the person who proposed the clause) to pursue it actually happening, or to censure the Secretary if they have been lax in their duties?

Our current Secretary is both diligent and hardworking and being Secretary of RAAus is not his day job nor even his usual line of work. We have a very significant and well understood problem with the RAAus website. It is currently the subject of a major revamp and, for my money, it can't come too soon. The Board has an incentive to publish minutes and details of Board Resolutions so that they can act on the Resolutions.

There is an AGM coming up at Bundaberg in 5 weeks time. By all means, drop in and meet the Board and ask the question yourself. As a part of my induction I would expect to see the current Board Resolutions Register and Minutes of recent meetings so that I can get myself up to speed.

 

 

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The magazines saga is a good example. I'm sure if the members had had access to the discussions there would have been a different outcome. . . .

Possible different outcomes:

 

  • Change nothing and continue to incur deficits until reserves are used up and RAAus is wound up - no magazine printed or otherwise.
     
     
  • Put the fees up across the entire membership. This advantages those members who would prefer a paper magazine (at all members expense) against those who want a digital magazine and no fee increase.
     
     

 

 

 

 

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18(ii) provides that "Board meetings other than those referred to in sub-section (i) above may be conducted by electronic means." It offers no dispensation for duties imposed on the Secretary by 14B

Does that mean that these electronic board meetings you speak of have not occurred, or that they have not been appropriately minuted?

 

Our current Secretary is both diligent and hardworking and being Secretary of RAAus is not his day job nor even his usual line of work. We have a very significant and well understood problem with the RAAus website. It is currently the subject of a major revamp and, for my money, it can't come too soon. The Board has an incentive to publish minutes and details of Board Resolutions so that they can act on the Resolutions.

Perhaps, instead of spending money on surveys etc, some office assistance to the Secretary for him to perform his role adequately would be in order. Or perhaps the Secretary should ask for this assistance.

 

There is an AGM coming up at Bundaberg in 5 weeks time. By all means, drop in and meet the Board and ask the question yourself. As a part of my induction I would expect to see the current Board Resolutions Register and Minutes of recent meetings so that I can get myself up to speed.

If you are able to see the Board Resolutions Register, why shouldn't the rest of us be able to?

 

 

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It all comes down to what a resolution is, what a decision is and what the board individuals think of the distinction, or lack thereof, between these.......I'm personally of a view that a resolution and a decision in terms of a board determination should practically be no different, and that decisions should be subject to the same rules in terms of voting that formal resolutions are subject to........however my view, is either the minority view in the board (back then) , or others had simply chosen to not participate by virtue of their silence in the discussion on the forum and as such there is a difference in the board today....... If you want that difference to be explained, and then possibly removed as a result of a vote at the AGM then the upcoming AGM at Bundaberg is a perfect place for that clarity to be imposed on the board. But not by me, I wont be there due to ongoing concern about where the next bottle of vegemite is coming from!

 

There are many things that need to be commercial in confidence, the legal reality is that any contract between RAAus and any other commercial entity needs to be protected.....that is not at all unique to RAAus, large organisations I have worked in, in the role of commercial managers also keep the details of the contract terms and conditions as commercial in confidence. The issue of course is that we can all beat our chests and argue as members we should have full visibility, but recognise that across the membership we have a microcosm of the whole of Australia. So, using the example of the insurance negotiations and subsequent contract with terms and conditions.......I'll bet in our membership we have insurance brokers who sell aviation insurance.....Do they really have a right, as a member, to understand the full details of a contract that their day to day competitor has put in place with RAAus........No matter what you may think for the board its more about managing RAAus risk , they know that treating such an agreement as commercial in confidence, and therefore restricting who can see the actual contract T's and C's reduces the risk that a supplier may well sue for consequential damages if the terms and conditions (which include as a subset price and volumes) were to suddenly become available to their hated competition....

 

Unless you understand at all times the make up of your membership then a wide open approach will potentially damage suppliers unless you disclose to them upfront that the full membership will get to see the resultant outcome....In insurance, as an example, where we find it hard to get insurers to consider taking us on as it is, such an approach may add to the transparency being sought, while at the same time driving the cost up....... shades of grey folks!

 

Andy

 

 

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Because he's now the NSW replacement board member and as such has access to the board forum.....

That's not my point. My point is that these resolutions, according to the constitution, are available to all members, and that it's the secretary's role to make them available. Why should he silently be complicit with this abrogation of the constitution of RAAus and enjoy his position without working for the members by making them available?

 

 

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Does that mean that these electronic board meetings you speak of have not occurred, or that they have not been appropriately minuted?

Not having been privy to any such meetings I would not know. Clearly, I was speaking on the principle involved and what is allowed/required under the rules.

 

Perhaps, instead of spending money on surveys etc, some office assistance to the Secretary for him to perform his role adequately would be in order. Or perhaps the Secretary should ask for this assistance.

As I understand it there is clerical assistance to the Secretary to produce meeting minutes. I was not suggesting he was too busy or lax - quite the opposite. If there have been electronic meetings and they have not been minuted then that is not in accordance with the requirements of the Constitution.

 

If you are able to see the Board Resolutions Register, why shouldn't the rest of us be able to?

You are entitled to see them under the provisions of the Constitution as we've discussed. You can follow them through Minutes of Board and General Meetings that are published. The most recent Board Meeting Minutes were for the May 2015. The Minutes, some 11 pages are reasonably good. They could be better but at least not bad.

 

 

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That's not my point. My point is that these resolutions, according to the constitution, are available to all members, and that it's the secretary's role to make them available. Why should he silently be complicit with this abrogation of the constitution of RAAus and enjoy his position without working for the members by making them available?

Ada, I understood your point precisely. As a Board Member I have a responsibility for the Good Governance of RAAus - goodness knows I've bleated on about it enough in the past. Part of that responsibility is to ensure that the Board meets its obligations under the rules (Constitution). As soon as I have had a chance to get my feet under the table, I will want to gain an understanding of the governance situation and ensure that any deficiencies are remediated. In the meantime feel free to write to the Secretary and express your concerns.

 

 

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Im sorry I cant be clearer than I already have been........RAAus board (or more accurately the exec at the time) is of the view that there is a distinction between decisions and resolutions and as such decisions don't need to be reported.........That's just the way it is! unless we the people, change their mind

Like you Andy, I am not into splitting hairs, semantically speaking. Formality requires a motion to be put, discussed and debated and voted. The result of a vote by the Board is the Board Resolving to do X.

 

 

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Here's another example......I was prior to going on the board, part of the membership that got the constitution changed so that reporting of resolutions was made....At the time we put it together in our mind the reporting required is all resolutions and decisions. The interpretation actually applied by the then exec, was all passed resolutions were reported because those that fail aren't resolutions......My argument was what do you call them? Me I call them failed resolutions, being a subset of total resolutions........

 

Anyway....don't get the view by my whinging that things are out of control....compared to recent past what we have is luxury!

 

 

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It all comes down to what a resolution is, what a decision is and what the board individuals think of the distinction, or lack thereof, between these.......

I put a couple of hundred hours into the earlier discussions we had, a lot of which was just deleted from the forum when the whole board thing become controversial, so I don't have the same enthusiasm to go through it all again, even though there are new people here who would benefit from a big picture perspective.

 

I'm convinced a public forum like this is not the format to get any meaningful result because it is not possible to stick to a single subject until all fully understand all aspects and all can debate it and all can come to a consensus. Also, because forum posts are brief, too many people get confused and diverted without a proper explanation, and a fuller understanding of what is actually meant in the post. Just recently an another thread I posted some actual facts and was greeted by possum sounds in the next post because the person had had no education or understanding on the processes I was talking about. In addition, there are people with their own agendas for their own benefit who fire up as soon as a discussion starts to gather momentum in a positive direction and shoot it down.

 

So I don't think this is the place to get too excited about definitions and detailed qualifications.

 

There are many things that need to be commercial in confidence, the legal reality is that any contract between RAAus and any other commercial entity needs to be protected....

There are a few, but the important thing to remember is that the contract is between the members and that entity. If a member, or for that matter a board member has a conflict of interest he/she should be disqualifying himself/herself anyway.

Again, a forum is a very frustrating place to get into detail if you want to start getting precise.

 

 

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. . . what do you call them?

Whatever you call them they must be minuted. The Secretary, in accordance with 14B (ii) must "Ensure all Board Resolutions are published within 7 days in the Members Only Section of the RA-Aus website with the report to include how each Board Member voted and the Resolution summarised only where that is essential to protect reasonable confidentiality."

We need to know who voted which way so we can be better informed when we vote at the next Board election.

 

 

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You are entitled to see them under the provisions of the Constitution as we've discussed. You can follow them through Minutes of Board and General Meetings that are published. The most recent Board Meeting Minutes were for the May 2015. The Minutes, some 11 pages are reasonably good. They could be better but at least not bad.

Thanks Don, it seems we are loudly agreeing.

 

You say that you expect to see the minutes and resolutions register as part of your induction; shouldn't you be expecting to see the minutes and resolutions register simply as a member, irregardless of whether you have been inducted as a board member? Anything that you are seeing that I can't see is information which is illegally being withheld from members.

 

The working class can kiss my ass, I've got the boss's job at last!

 

 

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. . . You say that you expect to see the minutes and resolutions register as part of your induction; shouldn't you be expecting to see the minutes and resolutions register simply as a member, irregardless (double negative?) of whether you have been inducted as a board member?

What I will see is the Board Forum. All the rest is or should be available on the website.

 

. . .

 

The working class can kiss my ass, I've got the boss's job at last!

One of my all time favourite ditties.

 

 

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If some feel they have ALL the answers why not run for the positions? Anyone can be an armchair Colonel. Criticising is easy. Doing something is Just er Different. It's reality. The board people don't get paid anything or get any privileges. Nev

 

 

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If some feel they have ALL the answers why not run for the positions? Anyone can be an armchair Colonel. Criticising is easy. Doing something is Just er Different. It's reality. The board people don't get paid anything or get any privileges. Nev

Don't have all or any of the answers, but the constitution is a contract between the Association and its members, and the Association appears to be in breach here.

 

 

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again, nothing in the constitution that states members must run for the board to put up (or knock down) ideas. Likewise nothing states the Board has to have all the answers and not refer to members at all

 

 

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Just get a bit tired of the negativity. Reading a lot of this criticism would not help people feel good about it. Criticise when it is really required. It's better now than for a very long time, and it's only ordinary people that make it work. You don't know when you are well off. Nev

 

 

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Possible different outcomes:

  • Change nothing and continue to incur deficits until reserves are used up and RAAus is wound up - no magazine printed or otherwise.
     
     
  • Put the fees up across the entire membership. This advantages those members who would prefer a paper magazine (at all members expense) against those who want a digital magazine and no fee increase.
     
     

A third alternate - move the printed magazine to subscription and reduce the membership fees. Rather than FORCE the membership to accept what is a VERY substantial % increase in their membership in 1 year to arrest the decline in financial viability it COULD have been spread over 2 years ... lets face facts - on the CURRENT membership fees increase in 2015 brought about by the removal of the magazine I recall that we are projecting effectively a very minor deficit ... we incurred the loss from printed mags for half the year and effectively recovered it all in the second half ... what happens in 2016 ... fees come down to cover the forecast increase or are we likely to see overall salary/staff costs continue to rise ... even with few heads.

Its a member association and not looking very member friendly in some areas.

 

 

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Just get a bit tired of the negativity. Reading a lot of this criticism would not help people feel good about it. Criticise when it is really required. It's better now than for a very long time, and it's only ordinary people that make it work. You don't know when you are well off. Nev

Yes, things are a lot better then a couple years ago because we are not grounded. But in terms of an open board commenting with members, I don't see the amount of change you do. Most of the criticism is very minor in nature and is more about getting the Board to keep striving to improve. Without criticism nothing will improve and we risk falling back in the days when no one said anything, the board did what they like and the first members know something is wrong is when aircraft are not allowed into the air.

 

Is By-Law #2 constitutional if you have to pay to get the printed magazine? You could argue that you should not have to pay to get notice of an election sent to you.

You still get the notice electronically (via the magazine and with the new eNewsletter. I don't think the constitution says it must be in printed form and mailed out via the postal system.

 

 

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You still get the notice electronically (via the magazine and with the new eNewsletter. I don't think the constitution says it must be in printed form and mailed out via the postal system.

By-Law 2 says 'printed', though.

 

 

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