What’s Going On? — Info from the Board
Fee Changes and Other Membership Benefits
As we and your executive director travelled to shows, events, auctions and meetings during 2017, we often heard from you about annoying fees, processes and costs. Your voices are always important, and you’ve been heard.
Going into 2018, we have eliminated the $5 surcharge fee for processing transactions through the AOA office instead of online. This includes registrations, transfers and agent requests.
Download the current fee schedule.
We also have extended the time period from 90 days to 180 days for you to transfer your alpacas after a sale or other transaction. As members, you now have double the time to complete the transfer at the lower fee of $35.
For a three-month period through the end of March 2018, we will reduce the fee for registering alpacas one year of age or older to $55 instead of the regular $80 fee. So if you are kicking yourself for not having registered any of your crias in past years, now’s the time to make things right. After March, the fee will revert to $55 for alpacas under one year of age and $80 for those older than one year.
Finally, we will automatically send to Association Members—at no charge—a PDF file of the new certificate any time a registration or transfer takes place! This saves you the step of having to scan the certificate whenever you register for AOA-certified alpaca shows or for other business and marketing purposes. A printed certificate will still be mailed to all indicated owner accounts.
We are in the all-important 2018 AOA membership renewal period through the end of January. Your membership dollars support the health and vitality of the association.
The association did not take any funds from our reserve accounts for operations during 2017. The total value of our reserves at the end of November was $1,065,219, an increase in net value for the year. While the year’s books are not yet closed, the association’s revenues were running ahead of budget and expenses were below budget. All-in-all, we’ve experienced a very good year financially.
Your investment in your association through your membership dues will enable us to promote alpacas and alpaca products. Marketing initiatives like the American Farmer video will be produced to continue moving us forward. And, our new Natural Fiber Extravaganza set for July near Nashville will bring increased focus on alpaca fleece and its value to both commercial and cottage production.
Thanks to all members for your past support and your renewing membership. Look for a survey coming your way early in the New Year through which you can share with us what you value from the association and what other initiatives we should consider as a benefit to you.
Renew your membership for 2018.
2018–19 Board of Directors Election
An Election Committee has been appointed to recruit and vet potential Board candidates to be on the ballot for the 2018–2019 year. Norm Johnson has been named chair of the committee, and he will be joined by Stacie Chavez, Faye Farley, Sue King, and Renee Ritenour as committee members.
Terms of current Board members Don Greene, Steve Hull, and Mike Vigus will expire at the 2018 annual meeting in July. Greene and Vigus are eligible to run for re-election; Hull will have served two terms and, per the bylaws, is ineligible to run this year.
The Election Committee will select at least two candidates for each of the three seats that will be open on the Board. Any AOA member also can petition to be added to the ballot as a candidate for the Board.
Shining Star Award
It’s also the time of the year for us to nominate candidates for the Shining Star award to recognize an industry volunteer or volunteers who give above and beyond. We really could not have a highly effective Association without our volunteers.
Who would you like to see recognized? Nominations are being accepted online through January 18.
Read AlpacaGram 4.84 on the nomination process.
You’ve probably seen social media commentary over the past few months about whether it’s time to open the registry or keep it closed. We’ve seen it, too. Your board will have an initial discussion this month on how we can best review the registry’s history, gather research and information on the topic, manage Association member-input, develop scenarios for impacts on the industry both pro and con, and arrive at a decision on whether to put the matter to a membership vote.
Since the formation of AOA that brought together the registry, DNA validation, show system and the marketing components of our industry, there has not been a formal discussion of our future direction with respect to an open registry and how that could help or impede the advancement of our industry. It’s an open question for everyone.
BLOG, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Email, In-Person, Phone, or Whatever
Please be in touch with us by whatever means suits you. We are looking to have a more interactive and engaged membership to serve your interests and needs, and to help us grow our industry.
All the best to everyone for a prosperous 2018!
Your Board of Directors