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-   -   Dues increase coming? 1 million spent on government relations..... (https://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/ama-discussions-74/11615303-dues-increase-coming-1-million-spent-government-relations.html)

mr_matt 03-29-2015 11:55 AM

Dues increase coming? 1 million spent on government relations.....
 
From the January EC meeting minutes:


• Dues: In July 2014 Council talked about a dues increase and why it was needed. In 1997 dues were $48; since then there has been one dues increase (2003). The Academy has spent over one million dollars just on government relations; this is expected to continue and the need for resources is huge.

Sessions explained how the government measures inflation. Using the inflation adjustments from 1997, this would put our dues at $70.92; if we adjusted from 2003, the dues would be $74.44. (This goes through 2014, a dues increase would not take effect until 2016.) It was recommended that dues be increased to $75; it has been 13 years since dues were reviewed. Sessions believes this subject should be put on a cycle and reviewed every few years. In 2003 membership numbers were about 172,000; we are 175,000 now. When the dues change was made in 2003 AMA lost 5,000 members. Today, AMA is viewed as an advocate for the modeler, much more along the lines of government relations and education; the value statement AMA has is much stronger.

G. Fitch stated from a marketing perspective we can provide the reasoning and justification to prepare our members for this ahead of time. He brought up the need for a dues increase during a meeting at the NEAT Fair. He told members that AMA cannot keep spending millions of dollars protecting model aviation from the federal government, and hundreds of thousands of dollars developing a PR campaign without some additional source of revenue; an adjustment is logical and is needed.

M. Radcliff stated that if we do it now it will give us time to market it with all the reasons why an increase is needed


1 million spent trying to influence the government.

BTW we sent at least one person to the CES show in Las Vegas.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EETm...e_gdata_player

BarracudaHockey 03-29-2015 12:15 PM

What's wrong with that?

Still the best money spent over the course of a year participating in the hobby IMHO

Silent-AV8R 03-29-2015 12:21 PM

21 cents a day for dues seems fine to me given what AMA does for its members.

JohnB96041 03-29-2015 01:54 PM

Subscribed.....count me in. I am willing to pay more in dues for the support that we get.

PLANE JIM 03-29-2015 05:51 PM

We should have spent more-because the FAA does not give a damn about the AMA!!!!

BarracudaHockey 03-30-2015 05:03 AM

Thats not true at all, if they wanted to be done with us there wouldn't be any CBO stuff in the NPRM

littlecrankshaf 03-30-2015 07:27 AM

Sounds like another blundering mistake to me... I didn't realize AMA had financial problems that necessitates the increase. Oh well. what do I know??? Maybe the increase in dues will offset the drop in membership...maybe they will actually realize a dollar or two more of our money to spend...But what about that "power in numbers" thing people always cite??? I guess that really doesn't matter all that much after all...

bradpaul 03-30-2015 08:16 AM

What I would recommend is a hike in the full page add rates in MA. The vendors and manufactures need to kick in and get off the free ride they have for lobbying by the AMA. Leave the small add prices alone to help the mom and pop operations, but Hobbyco, Tower, HobbyKing, and others can pony up. It's not as if there are alternatives for them to advertise in.

What worries me is with all the uncertainty on rules and regulations is how the insurance company underwriter will evaluate the future risk. I believe the insurance premium is a very large part of the AMA budget.

[email protected] 03-30-2015 10:39 AM

think ill fly at the desert no one around no ama no drones just a thought

Waco 03-30-2015 11:15 AM

As a 64 for old on SS I am gone if they raise the dues period, it might not seem like a lot for you guys working with big jobs but living on social security I have to pay bills first and there just isn't enough as it is to come up with money for a hobby I can do without.

Chris Nicastro 03-30-2015 11:46 AM

Magazine revenue
Event revenue
Fundraisers
Raffles
Training program revenue
Professional and Governement UAV certification revenue
Product revenue
Website click thru traffic revenue

It seems to me I can think of a few ideas BEFORE I get to raising the membership rates. Lets get creative AMA and not stick it to the members because its easy.

init4fun 03-30-2015 12:10 PM

:( The AMA will "shoot themselves in the foot" if they raise membership dues much beyond the $60 a year point , in my humble opinion .

I don't think the dwindling membership at $75 would be ALL due to protests of the increase , but mostly for the simple fact that as one poster here has already stated , LOTS of folks are still operating with budgets at the very edge of being priced out of the hobby . Sure , some of us can absorb that increase as the relatively small number it is , but I don't ignore or lack sympathy for those on the financial edge , Those who have not yet seen any of the supposed "economic recovery" that the talking heads on the 6:00 news are always prattling on about . It's for those members that an increase really should be the AMA's very last resort to raise funds , And the suggestion of the companies that are the big players in the hobby to pick up the slack sure does sound great on the surface , but I'd expect to see an incremental increase in product price as they will be loath to accept the loss (and will be ALL to willing to pass it along to us)

bradpaul 03-30-2015 12:16 PM


Originally Posted by Waco (Post 12013349)
As a 64 for old on SS I am gone if they raise the dues period, it might not seem like a lot for you guys working with big jobs but living on social security I have to pay bills first and there just isn't enough as it is to come up with money for a hobby I can do without.

Well as you are 64 when you renew next Jan you should renew at the "Senior" cost $48.00

fliers1 03-30-2015 12:47 PM

How about many of the 175,000 AMA members taking advantage of AMA's Sign 3 - Fly Free Ambassador program? Idealistically, if most of the members did this, it could double or triple our numbers.

BarracudaHockey 03-30-2015 01:16 PM

Or become a CD and run one class C event a year, as simple as running a swap meet, and its half price.

[email protected] 03-30-2015 01:58 PM

iam 83 yrs old > time for me to get a free pass from the ama > ive been flying sinse 1940> i know a lot of men who fly out on the desert that dont belong to the ama>i think ill give up flying in 2 more years>

cj_rumley 03-30-2015 03:48 PM


Originally Posted by init4fun (Post 12013388)
:( The AMA will "shoot themselves in the foot" if they raise membership dues much beyond the $60 a year point , in my humble opinion .

I don't think the dwindling membership at $75 would be ALL due to protests of the increase , but mostly for the simple fact that as one poster here has already stated , LOTS of folks are still operating with budgets at the very edge of being priced out of the hobby . Sure , some of us can absorb that increase as the relatively small number it is , but I don't ignore or lack sympathy for those on the financial edge , Those who have not yet seen any of the supposed "economic recovery" that the talking heads on the 6:00 news are always prattling on about . It's for those members that an increase really should be the AMA's very last resort to raise funds , And the suggestion of the companies that are the big players in the hobby to pick up the slack sure does sound great on the surface , but I'd expect to see an incremental increase in product price as they will be loath to accept the loss (and will be ALL to willing to pass it along to us)

A discussion among officers of one of the clubs wher I fly had the dues increase discussion recently, and for exactly the reasons you cited made them decide otherwise. The club is overspending income, which comes entirely from dues, by about $1K, per year. A dues increase from $60/ yr to $80/yr for Open members would close the gap, if there were no allowance for inflation of costs. The decision was to hold the line on dues and dig into club savings to partially cover the shortage, and hope that membership will increase (though it has been declining for several years). Now if it is perceived by those club officers that significant numbers of members would drop out of the club rather than absorb the increased dues even though the costs are clearly visible and tangible at the club flying site, an increase of similar magnitude in the tax paid to AMA 'because the club requires it' is going to meet even more recalcitrance. As for me, i don't much like paying $58 and will care less for paying $75. Of more concern is whether we can retain enough members to have a club.

bradpaul 03-30-2015 04:32 PM


Originally Posted by init4fun (Post 12013388)
:( The AMA will "shoot themselves in the foot" if they raise membership dues much beyond the $60 a year point , in my humble opinion .

I don't think the dwindling membership at $75 would be ALL due to protests of the increase , but mostly for the simple fact that as one poster here has already stated , LOTS of folks are still operating with budgets at the very edge of being priced out of the hobby . Sure , some of us can absorb that increase as the relatively small number it is , but I don't ignore or lack sympathy for those on the financial edge , Those who have not yet seen any of the supposed "economic recovery" that the talking heads on the 6:00 news are always prattling on about . It's for those members that an increase really should be the AMA's very last resort to raise funds , And the suggestion of the companies that are the big players in the hobby to pick up the slack sure does sound great on the surface , but I'd expect to see an incremental increase in product
price as they will be loath to accept the loss (and will be ALL to willing to pass it along to us)


Originally Posted by CJ_rumley
A discussion among officers of one of the clubs wher I fly had the dues increase discussion recently, and for exactly the reasons you cited made them decide otherwise. The club is overspending income, which comes entirely from dues, by about $1K, per year. A dues increase from $60/ yr to $80/yr for Open members would close the gap, if there were no allowance for inflation of costs. The decision was to hold the line on dues and dig into club savings to partially cover the shortage, and hope that membership will increase (though it has been declining for several years). Now if it is perceived by those club officers that significant numbers of members would drop out of the club rather than absorb the increased dues even though the costs are clearly visible and tangible at the club flying site, an increase of similar magnitude in the tax paid to AMA 'because the club requires it' is going to meet even more recalcitrance. As for me, i don't much like paying $58 and will care less for paying $75. Of more concern is whether we can retain enough members to have a club.



Unfortunately TANSTAAFL applies here, The AMA or the local club can either increase revenue, reduce cost, spend savings or worst case borrow money. Now my preference is "reduce cost" with the understanding that that will mean a reduction in services. Begs the question of what the priority of the AMA should be. Now a club with lease payments and well known costs for mowing a maintenance that is declining in membership is a real problem.


warbird_1 03-30-2015 05:41 PM


Originally Posted by mr_matt (Post 12012701)
From the January EC meeting minutes:


• Dues: In July 2014 Council talked about a dues increase and why it was needed. In 1997 dues were $48; since then there has been one dues increase (2003). The Academy has spent over one million dollars just on government relations; this is expected to continue and the need for resources is huge.

Sessions explained how the government measures inflation. Using the inflation adjustments from 1997, this would put our dues at $70.92; if we adjusted from 2003, the dues would be $74.44. (This goes through 2014, a dues increase would not take effect until 2016.) It was recommended that dues be increased to $75; it has been 13 years since dues were reviewed. Sessions believes this subject should be put on a cycle and reviewed every few years. In 2003 membership numbers were about 172,000; we are 175,000 now. When the dues change was made in 2003 AMA lost 5,000 members. Today, AMA is viewed as an advocate for the modeler, much more along the lines of government relations and education; the value statement AMA has is much stronger.

G. Fitch stated from a marketing perspective we can provide the reasoning and justification to prepare our members for this ahead of time. He brought up the need for a dues increase during a meeting at the NEAT Fair. He told members that AMA cannot keep spending millions of dollars protecting model aviation from the federal government, and hundreds of thousands of dollars developing a PR campaign without some additional source of revenue; an adjustment is logical and is needed.

M. Radcliff stated that if we do it now it will give us time to market it with all the reasons why an increase is needed


1 million spent trying to influence the government.

BTW we sent at least one person to the CES show in Las Vegas.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EETm...e_gdata_player

Gary is a good friend of mine.. We,Gary and Dave had a conversation about this very thing and i suggested and told them i support and encourage a dues increase. You can't counteract any legal action without enough income . I felt it was a good "investment" in the future of our hobby.

littlecrankshaf 03-31-2015 05:49 AM


Originally Posted by warbird_1 (Post 12013643)
Gary is a good friend of mine.. We,Gary and Dave had a conversation about this very thing and i suggested and told them i support and encourage a dues increase. You can't counteract any legal action without enough income . I felt it was a good "investment" in the future of our hobby.

So your the reason fees are going up??? Thaaanks... LOL

mikes68charger 03-31-2015 06:16 AM

Ok, I love the AMA and have had no issues or need of there services for the last 5 years, but Its starting to feel like a Monoply right? Its not like we have any othere choces do we?

As every feild I know requires AMA, it makes us forced to pay them to play,

I have 2 good flying buddys who dont make now were $ I do, but they love to fly, I even paided one of there AMA fees last year so he could fly,

But at that price they will never fly again

Mtthwacrss 03-31-2015 06:22 AM

Here we gomaking this a rich man’s hobby again. I can just barely get the current duespast my house approbations committee. My local club is going up next year also.I might just find myself flying off one of the local hay fields again. I'm notsaying we don’t need to raise the dues just be careful how much they go up orwe will lose more members than the money we raise. I guess if I don't have topay AMA then I won’t have to pay local club either, more money for planes.

049flyer 03-31-2015 06:23 AM

It would be nice to see what efforts have been taken to reduce expenses. It's easy to dictate a rate increase to a captive membership with little recourse. Much harder to self examine for ways to save money in order to avoid an increase.

littlecrankshaf 03-31-2015 07:21 AM

Since the rationale of a dues increase includes an adjustment due to inflationary reasons...shouldn't the liability coverage also be adjusted accordingly??? When was the last time that was increased???and isn't that the greatest reason most people think we need AMA???

With that thought in mind, maybe they should just raise the dues to $150 per year... Maybe $250 would be even better...

DISCUS54 03-31-2015 07:35 AM


Originally Posted by Mtthwacrss (Post 12013905)
Here we gomaking this a rich man’s hobby again. I can just barely get the current duespast my house approbations committee. My local club is going up next year also.I might just find myself flying off one of the local hay fields again. I'm notsaying we don’t need to raise the dues just be careful how much they go up orwe will lose more members than the money we raise. I guess if I don't have topay AMA then I won’t have to pay local club either, more money for planes.

No need to sound alarmed....You guys aren't taking into account the millions of illegal aliens here on executive orders that will probably join. Just a small percentage would offset the 5,000 of so that will probably quit because of the price increase. We might even see a membership numbers increase to the point that there could be a reduction in dues. Hahaha.


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