Minutes, 20 June 2013

Minutes, 20 June 2013

Call to Order was at 18:00, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance, invocation offered by chapter Chaplain Jim Kelley, followed by a moment of silence for POWs and MIAs.

Roll Call.  Sergeant at Arms Norm Graham called the roll:

President: John Sheets Present

Vice President: Ron Reinhardt Present

Secretary: Michial Nolan Present

Treasurer: Gary Fink Present

Attendance: 31 VVA Chapter 989 members

1 AVVA member

State Council President Terry Hubert

New Members: The chapter welcomed Jim Finley from the Placerville VVA and Charles Flory from Lovelock Chapter 834.  Brandon Reihman was welcomed as a new AVVA member.

Guest. Tom Lakey of the Ghost Riders was scheduled but was unable to attend.

Secretary’s Report.  Minutes of the May meeting were distributed for review before the call to order.
Motion.  Jim Kittrell introduced a motion to accept the May minutes, seconded by Norm Graham (unanimous).

Treasurer’s Report.  Treasurer Gary Fink presented the Treasurer’s report.
Motion.  Eric Hobson introduced a motion to accept the Treasurer’s report, seconded by Rick Shuster (unanimous).

Petty Cash.  President John Sheets presented the petty cash report, particularly focusing on the chapter’s reproduction costs using his home printer.  Kenny Williams stated the Vet Center historically let the chapter make copies for free.  Gary Nicholes asked John to see him after the meeting.  Several others made suggestions, including one that Costco refills ink cartridges at attractive rates

Annual Financial Statement.  Vice President Ron Reinhardt commented on the annual financial statement.  He noted the chapter often runs a deficit and we often vote funds without consideration.  Ron encouraged chapter members in future, if they disagree or want further consideration before funding, should feel free to speak up or vote no.  Jim Hanson endorsed Ron’s remarks, adding we have an obligation to be good stewards the chapter’s resources.  Don Thomas questioned an old expenditure of $5,000 to sponsor a Lacey J. Dalton concert.  President John Sheets explained briefly and Secretary Michial Nolan explained the history in detail to Don following the meeting.

President’s Report.  President John Sheets presented the President’s report, beginning by thanking the chapter for its support.
-Partisan political speech: VVA and its chapters are non-partisan and partisan political speech or circulating partisan materials during meetings violates the National constitution and the chapter’s charter.  Political speech is welcome before or after chapter meetings but are not to be brought into the meeting.  VVA colors are not to be worn to political events.
-President Sheets apologized for his perception of having lost control of the May meeting in which events ran longer than anticipated.

State Council President’s Report.  State Council President Terry Hubert reported on the Region 8/9 meeting.  Terry reported National President John Rowan was in attendance.  Terry reported financial controversies were avoided for the moment, and that a finance meeting is scheduled in Las Vegas in a couple of weeks.  Terry called attention to the color guard and singing, stating both were great.  Chapter President John Sheets led applause for Roger Sanchez for organizing the color guard.  Terry stated he was ordering delegate shirts for the National Convention.

Chapter 388 Report.  President John Sheets delivered Chapter 388’s report from chapter president Rick Arnold in his absence.  A coloring book of American History put out by an organization in Ohio can be sued for distribution on visits to elementary schools.  Free copies of “The Wall” are available by the gross if we pay shipping.  These can be used at outreaches.

Board of Directors Report.  Board chairman Rick Shuster reported on the BOD meeting of 9 May, reading the minutes.  Rick announced the board meets every 2 months and the next meeting is scheduled for 11 July.  Rick stated the board minutes were distributed by email.

Veterans Stand Down.  Vice President Ron Reinhardt reminded the chapter the Stand Down will be 20 September and called for the formation of a Stand Down committee.  Ron stated we need volunteers to handle logistics on the morning of the stand down.  The stand down is a tradition dating to the early 90s, originating in San Diego.  The stand down is an annual gathering and outreach to homeless veterans, offering a wide range of goods and services.  Former Chapter President Bob Sperry reported there will be a meeting July 11 at Capitol Hill.  The stand down will be held this year at the Homeless Center on Capitol Hill in order to provide homeless veterans immediate access to VA services.  Jim Hanson asked if Bob’s wife will cut hair again this year.  Bob’s positive reply was met with applause.

 Outreach Committee Report.  Gary Nicholes offered thanks to participants at the last Walmart outreach.  Roger Sanchez was recognized for putting on a successful event at the Memorial Day functions at the Veterans Cemetery in Fernley.  Jim Hanson and Norm Graham called for honorable mention for Amber Graham.

Veterans Guest House.  Rick Shuster said there would be a pre-poker run party at the Silverado Casino in Fernley the Friday before the poker run.  Gary Nicholes said we did an outreach at the poker run last year and would like to see greater participation this year.  John Sheets and Rick said there would be no VVA outreach at this year’s event

Parade Committee.  Roger Sanchez announced the 4th of July parade in Virginia City.  Members will form up at 11:00 at the south end of town.  Roger hoped for a large turnout in chapter uniforms.  Roger said the Vet Center will be on hand with their trailer for those who would rather ride.

Money for Vet’s Families.  Roger Sanchez noted a lot of vets have been killed recently, and he wants to raise money for their families.  Roger stated he has more fund raising meetings coming up.

Honor Flight.  Roger Sanchez said the honor flight will arrive Sunday at 2:00 pm.  Roger requested members be at the airport at 1:00 pm to greet the “Greatest Generation.”  Roger stated all local veterans groups, news media, and an assortment of politicians would be there to greet them.  Roger stated he wants members to show up in uniform.  Jim Hanson requested we do not exclude members who are not in uniform.

Regional Meeting.  Tod Brill thanked the chapter for sending him.  Tod said he was amazed by the scope of the organization and AVVA.  Norm Graham said he was impressed with John Rowan and others up for re-election.  Michael Hawe said it was his first experience and was impressed with the dedication and approachability of members and leadership, and was further impressed with the candidates in attendance.

Old Business.

Special Report: Needy Veteran.  Secretary Michial Nolan reported on the homeless female veteran recently helped by a special grant from the chapter.  Michial read a letter form Sandy Isham, Development and Community Relations Officer, Volunteers of America, thanking the chapter for its donation and support of the vulnerable members of the community.  The veteran gave birth to a healthy girl.  Funds donated by the chapter put her into a clean motel room conveniently located for her to access services at Restart.  The motel funding ran out on 11 June.  Efforts to locate other veterans organization funding were unsuccessful.  However, by that date it was possible for the vet and her children to stay with family in Fernley for several days until room opened up in the Family Shelter, where they are currently located.  The veteran has been accepted into a subsidized housing program and will soon be in her own apartment.  The veteran is currently in the process of gaining access to services at the VA, Restart, VOA, the Diaper Bank, etc.  Special recognition to Rick Shuster for working with the Restart Clinical Program Director to deliver the funding and house the veteran in a timely manner.

New Business.

New Hall Charge.  The Bunker will be charging $25 for use of the hall.

National Conference.  The VVA National Conference will be August 13 – 18.  The question was raised: shall the chapter send a representative?  State Council President Terry Hubert recommended the chapter act quickly before the rates go up.  The questions were, can we afford to send anyone, and do we have a budget?  Terry stated the cost would be about $1,500 per delegate, all expenses included. He also pointed out the last conference in Reno was the largest ever.  Michael Hawe asked how many delegates the chapter would be permitted.  John Sheets said 3.

John asked if the chapter wanted to spend $1,500 – $2,000 of our limited funds.  Terry stated he would fight for the State Council to reimburse 50%.  Jim Hanson stated he believed the chapter should send at least 1 delegate.

Motion.  Norm Graham proposed a motion “to send one person to the National Convention in August,” seconded by Jim Hanson.

Discussion: John Dickenson countered it would not be prudent when we don’t clearly understand our financial position.  Michael Hawe stated we could do outreaches.  Roger Sanchez suggested we could simply pass the hat.  Don Thomas favored sending one delegate.  Tod Brill stated he believed the State would be adequately represented in any case.
Vote:  The motion carried on a vote of 13 yea, 12 nay.

Rick Shuster shared his opinion that the issue was a matter of conscience.  Ron Reinhardt observed that the vote should have taken place earlier in the evening.  By the time of the vote, nearly 8:00 pm, nearly half of the attendees to the meeting had left.

Roger Sanchez tried to introduce a motion to restrict expenses to $2,000 but the initiative received no second.  No funds were appropriated at this meeting.

It was decided by acclamation that Rick Shuster would represent the chapter.

The following members celebrated birthdays this month:

Steven Loomis Terry O’Rourke Gary Romansik Dennis Tognetti Ronald Wilson Lori Montalvo

Good of the Chapter.  No issues raised.

Motion.  Gary Nicholes made a motion to adjourn, seconded by Gary Fink.

The June meeting adjourned at 8:04 pm.