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July 2016 Meeting Minutes

Minutes of the Committee Meeting of the DBA held on Tuesday 12 July 2016 at the Isca Centre.

Draft minutes awaiting approval at the next meeting.

1. Constitution of new committee: Elected at AGM : Michael Hamon (Chairman), Terence Treeby (Hon Secretary), vacancy for vice-Chairman
Nominated by sections : Jean Whitlam, Betty Golding (East), Paul Ainsworth, Geoff Clements(South), Elizabeth Nunn, Neil Marsden (North), no nominees from West Thanks are due to retiring members George Simnett, Vivien Peters, Terry Cannon, John Boxall, David Clarke, Ros Morgan.

Present: Michael Hamon (Chairman), Terence Treeby (Hon Secretary), Jean Harrison, Betty Golding (East), Geoff Clements(South), Elizabeth Nunn, Neil Marsden (North).
Also present : Ruth Edmondson who was co-opted as Hon Treasurer until the 2017 AGM. Ann Slee who was co-opted as Tournament Administrator until the July 2017 committee meeting.

2. Apologies: Jean Whitlam (East), Paul Ainsworth (South).

3. Minutes of meeting 2 June 2016. The minutes were accepted and signed as correct.

4. Matters arising.

4.1. Jun 3.2. No further information on possible affiliation of Spreyton, Noss Mayo or Twixt Moors (Winkleigh and Chulmleigh). Part of the role of Bev Purvis, the new EBU Club Liaison Officer, is to engage with unaffiliated Clubs around the Country with a view to attracting them into the Union.

4.2. Jun 3.4. Free-to-enter playing session, possibly flighted to allow a balance in playing standards (Hon Treasurer to organise with advice from Hon Secretary): no offers or progress. Refer to new education sub-committee.

4.3. Jun 3.7. Discussion deferred on possible future replacement of duplimate and county computer.

4.4. Jun 3.13. Michael Byrne seminars at Bovey Tracey Golf Centre were reduced to a single date on Sat 9 July. A report was tabled showing 16 players attended and subsidies of £240 from section funds and £11.05 from central funds. Michael Hamon was thanked for his help in preparation and on the day. The session was well received and benefited from having full tables. It was agreed to approach Michael Byrne with a view to a longer visit in early 2018 to include sessions for club players.

4.5. Jun 8.7. The following changes agreed for section league rules: (i) a multiple teams format may be used for smaller leagues; (ii) no team may register more than 7 players; (iii) no team in the A division may use more than 7 players in a season; (iv) the league organiser has discretion over the application of the league rules.

5. Report from AGM

5.1. The Chairman and Hon Secretary were re-elected; there was no nomination for vice-Chairman and the Hon Treasurer withdrew her nomination shortly before the AGM.

5.2. The committee proposed to the AGM that P2P from April 2017 will remain unchanged at 4p; the club subscription will remain at zero and the Devon part of direct membership remains at £3. A discussion followed. The motion was passed with one vote against.

5.3. Tollemache selection. There was discussion on trials in which points raised included: a lengthy trial (possibly two weekends) would be needed to be useful; pre-determined exemptions and outcome would need to be advertised; two previous trials did not work; we should be proud of and give support to our stronger players; there would be a cost in running them; the selectors should consider using some form of trials as part of their selection process. Selectors should also note committee wishes expressed by the committee proposal that the aim for the Tollemache qualifying round is to send the best possible qualified team from among players who actively support bridge in the county.
An amendment to 9b “No changes are made to the present selection arrangements.” was passed by 30 votes to 9. This automatically invalidated 9c and did not depend on the legitimacy or otherwise of 9a. Consequently the AGM did not discuss numerical playing conditions.

5.4. A member’s proposal that that our County Constitution be amended as follows :-
add to 10b) Annual General Meeting
Any member is entitled to attend any general meetings by proxy, provided that the nomination shall be valid only if it fulfils the following criteria:
*It is in writing and signed by the member.
*Both absentee and the proxy are members of the Association.
*The nomination is notified to the chair prior to the meeting.
This was carried by 18 votes to 15 after acceptance of an amendment “No member may act as proxy for more than one other member.” This received 21 votes and was carried (alternative versions for two other members and for more than two received 6 and 8 votes respectively).
It was clarified to the committee that this procedure applies from the 2017 AGM, and that it is normal that proxy votes cannot be used on a show of hands.

6. Appointment of sub-committee and review of terms of reference

6.1. Sub-committees were formed or reformed as follows:
Technology sub-committee: Paul Ainsworth, Ruth Edmondson.
EBU Counties Working Group: vacant.
Tournament Sub-Committee: Ann Slee, Terence Treeby, Treasurer (Ruth Edmondson).
Education Sub-Committee: Jean Harrison, Maureen Dalton. It was noted that Mike Gregory has offered help when available.
Selection Sub-Committee: Warner Solomon, Ruth Edmondson, Alison Pollok, Ann Slee (liaison.
Congress Sub-Committee: Marion Kelsey, Terence Treeby, Mike Kelsey, Treasurer (Ruth Edmondson); shadow for 2017 Michael Hamon.
EBU Shareholders: Terence Treeby, Dick Andrews, Michael Hamon.
Conduct Sub-Committee: Steve Quinn, Maureen Baser, George Simnett, Keith Ponsford, David Clarke.
Disciplinary Sub-Committee: Michael Hamon, Howard Kent-Webster, Robin Barker, Paul Ainsworth, Ann Slee.

6.2. There were no changes to the terms of reference.

7. Treasurer’s Report and Financial Matters

7.1. Following Vivien Peters’ resignation, email approval was obtained for the appointment of Ruth Edmondson as Treasurer, to be confirmed at this meeting. This allowed preparations for a handover to go ahead. Email approval was also obtained for the Secretary to act as interim Treasurer. The reports and budgets have been prepared by him in this capacity.

7.2. Secretary as interim Treasurer circulated report and budget. The budget shows that the surplus from regular events could rise by £1000 in 2016/17 mainly due to the once-in-five-years increase in P2P. This will be reduced by subsidies for one-off events and potential equipment expenses. It was agreed that the entry fees for the Devon Pairs (Julia Chadwick) final and the Devon Club Teams of 8 would remain at £8 per player and there would be no charge for the bridge following the AGM (although teams would still need to enter). Players under 25 will be charged 50% of bridge fees (50% of entry fee if no food is included). Section budgets for 2016/17 were approved. Following the AGM, the Tollemache qualifier entry fee and expenses of £400 (set for 2014-16 in 2014) will continue to be paid.

7.3. (Jun 3.8.) Andrew Robson (20-23 Mar 2017). The interim Treasurer presented a work-in-progress based on incomplete information. It was agreed that all venues would charge £10 per session. A decision on how much venues would pay to DBA was deferred. The organisation was referred to the new Education sub-committee.

7.4. Ongoing matters: Mandates for transferring the Lloyds and Scottish Widows accounts are being processed.

7.5. It was clarified that the mileage paid travel is 35p per mile per car until 31 December 2017.

8. Secretary’s Report and Correspondence

8.1. A letter had been received from John Lankshear on behalf of Plymouth Bridge Club regarding running Plymouth Congress or a club event aimed at less experienced players. The Hon Secretary replied raising some queries and concerns which have not yet been answered. (The West section is able to run the 2016 Congress; this may become an issue in future years when the committee may need to discuss possible sub-contracting of events and conditions attached.)

8.2. There is a potential vacancy for duplimate organiser (and storage).

9. Section Reports

9.1.North: AGM minutes tabled.

9.2. West: Bev Dickenson has agreed to handle Plymouth Congress entries. Ros Morgan is section chair, Ivor Moore secretary and Michael Hamon treasurer.

9.3. South: no report

9.4. East : no report.

10. Sub-committee Reports

10.1. Technology sub-committee [Paul Ainsworth, Ruth Edmondson]
No report.

10.2. EBU Counties Working Group / County Forum [vacant]

10.3. Tournament Sub-Committee [Ann Slee (Tournament Administrator), Terence Treeby, Ruth Edmondson].
The final version of the 2016-17 calendar was approved. A larger print version will be produced for display and those without internet access. Most events will now be able to take entries and payments electronically (and forward details to event organiser).

10.4. Education Sub-Committee [Jean Harrison, Maureen Dalton]
See 7.2 (Robson)

10.5 Selection Sub-Committee [Warner Solomon, Ruth Edmondson, Alison Pollok, Ann Slee (liaison)]
Sections will shortly receive detailed guidelines on running Western League matches.

10.6. Congress Sub-Committee [Marion Kelsey, Terence Treeby, Mike Kelsey, Shadow for 2016 Mike Hamon]
A report was tabled. It was agreed to accept the quote of £130 for printing brochures. It was agreed to accept The Palace Hotel terms subject to final confirmation of figures from the hotel. It was agreed that entry fees for 2017 would be £35 pairs, £24 teams and £55 full congress, all per person. The draft brochure was approved based on these costs. 2018 dates changed to 6-8 April due to clash with National Pairs final.

10.7. EBU Shareholders: [Terence Treeby, Dick Andrews, Michael Hamon]
Letter from EBU Chairman re revised proposal on subcommittees. The Shareholders continue to support the current EBU committee members who advised against losing independence and were supported by the committee. There will be a vote at the EBU AGM.

10.8. Conduct Sub-Committee: [Steve Quinn, Maureen Baser, George Simnett, Keith Ponsford, David Clarke]
No report.

10.9. Disciplinary Sub-Committee: [Michael Hamon, Howard Kent-Webster, Robin Barker, Paul Ainsworth, Ann Slee].
No report.

11. Any Other Business.

11.1. A suggestion was made to change the accounting year to end on 30 April, with corresponding changes to the Constitution. This would avoid events such as the Congress being spread over two accounting years. Deferred pending further investigation.

12. Next meetings

12.1. The next meeting will be at the Isca Centre at 6.30 pm on Wednesday 26 October. Committee members and sub-committees are asked to send documents for circulation to the Hon Sec by 5 October at the latest.