By Bonnie Bagley
National Board Representative
Saint Louis proved to be a popular venue for the Spring NABC. There was a total of 9,661 tables in play, an average table count for a Spring National, (except for the huge Reno Spring NABCs). Although there were two different playing locations – one for the national events, and one for the regional events – they were conveniently across the street from each other. The weather was often rainy and quite cold, but the playing conditions were pleasant.
ACBL President Don Mamula presided over his first meeting, allowing ample time for discussion while being cognizant of the time constraints. Appointments to the following committees were ratified: Hall of Fame, Competitons & Conventions, Ethical Oversight, ACBL Disciplinary, ACBL Laws Commission. Rand Pinsky, D23 (Los Angeles) was reelected ACBL Treasurer. Updating the ACBL Codification continued, a mammoth job undertaken ably by Phyllis Harlan, D15 (Southwest Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Western Arkansas and Northern Texas.) The ACBL Codification contains regulations and minutes of the ACBL Board of Directors currently in effect, organized by subject matter.
ACBL CEO Robert Hartman presented the Management Report. ACBL membership at the end of February was 166,881, the highest in over a decade. The Cooperative Advertising Program for 2012 showed a 5.6% increase over 2011. A total of $157,080 was distributed and 11,592 new members were recruited. D17 had 13 approved requests with $6,085 reimbursed, and 598 new members. This is a wonderful program where you do your own advertising and ACBL will help you pay for it. Go to acbl.org/marketing/coopAdvertising.html for more information.
Financially, ACBL remains solid. Total operating revenues for 2012 were $16.2 million versus $15.6 for 2011. There was a positive change in net assets from 2012 of $970, 969 versus $519,990 for 2011.
Motions of Interest
The inaugural 10K Swiss Teams game (0-10,000), held in St. Louis, drew 81 teams, proving to be a very popular idea. I heard only favorable comments about the event.
• The motions to hold a 0-10,000 MP Mixed Swiss Teams game and a 0-10,000 MP Pairs at the Summer NABCs were deferred to the summer meeting in Atlanta. The motion to require ACBL membership at all ACBL tournaments was withdrawn. Instead a motion to amend the ACBL Codification raising the additional fee for non-members, and non-service fee paying LMs, to $4.00 at regionals and $3.00 at sectionals passed.
• A motion passed allowing sponsors the option to waive the rule that playing directors in STAC games and their partners are ineligible to receive overall STAC masterpoint awards. This does not effect the Western Conference STACs since the WC STAC Conditions of Contest prohibit playing directors and their partners from receiving overall awards, while leaving them eligible to receive section awards.
• The motion of most concern to D17 is the raising of the minimum age for ACBL sanctioned senior events from age 55 to 60. Anyone eligible to play in a senior event on December 31, 2013, will remain eligible in subsequent years. This motion goes into effect January 1, 2014. I spoke strongly against this motion and would like to thank Shirley Seals, D9 (Florida), Suzi Subeck, D13 (Chicago, Wisconsin and upper Michigan) and Ken Monzingo, D22 (Southern California, excluding Los Angeles) for joining me.
Most affected will be the Mesa Senior Regional, but there is no need to ring the death knell for Mesa yet, and although a motion to allow the Mesa Regional to be an open regional failed in 2006, if the Mesa Unit decides they want it to be open, we will “go for it.” Right now Mesa takes much pride in being the only full-fledged Senior Regional in the country. The table count of the most recent Mesa Senior Regional was 2,323, their third highest ever. Of the 1,472 players, only 44 were between the ages of 55-60; playing twice a day for six days would account for 132 tables.
District 17 Clubs in Top 50
The list of the top 50 clubs in the country hosting the most tables for year 2012 has been released. Duke City Bridge Club in Albuquerque was the top D17 club at number 28, and AZ Bridgeworks in Scottsdale, Arizona, was 29th. DOTYBRIDGE, also in Scottsdale, was 32nd. Congratulations, all three!
Be sure to participate in the Western Conference Spring Fling STAC, May 6-12, and the Las Vegas NABC Fund Raiser Games, June 24-30, all at your local clubs. I look forward to seeing you at the Denver Regional May 21-27 and at the Las Vegas Regional June 17-23.
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Happy Mother’s Day!