Special Bulletin – 9 April 2014
AFFILIATION FEES & MEMBERSHIP MANAGEMENT
The purpose of this Special Bulletin is to announce a new and simpler method to determine and collect the affiliation fees to be levied on Clubs during the next three seasons. Bowls Victoria is moving away from a scheme whereby affiliation fees are paid per member and to one where they will be paid per club.
Affiliation fees, together with State Government grants and sponsorships, underpin the financial operations of Bowls Victoria (BV). These fees have traditionally been fixed as a $ cost per Club member and, once paid, entitle the member to play on the greens at any Club in Australia and overseas.
It has been a concern to the BV Board that the present method, involving invoicing twice yearly and progressively during the year for new members – plus the need for both Clubs and BV to reconcile their records with each other – is equally cumbersome, inefficient and extremely cost-intensive to BV and Clubs.
The Board charged the Finance Committee with the task of reviewing the present system and to also investigate what administrative improvements might be achieved given the shift to information technology.
The committee looked at several options, held discussions with BA and our IT providers for options other than the current labour intensive member based system and reported their findings to the Board, who have determined to move to a new streamlined method to apply from the upcoming 2014-15 Season.
HOW WILL AFFILIATION FEES BE CALCULATED IN FUTURE
- The new system will apply initially to seasons 2014-15, 2015-16 and 2016-17.
- There will be a single fee based on the total affiliation fees paid by each club in 2013-14, but adjusted annually for operating cost increases that have been incurred by BV.
- This adjustment for year one (2014-15) has been determined as 7%, but that figure will be different year-on-year.
- For example, if a club’s total affiliation fees in 2013-14 were $3,000 then the fee for 2014-15 would be $3,210 (3000 x 1.07). If the adjustment for year 2 (2015-16) was calculated at 5% then the fee for 2015-16 would be $3210 x 1.05 = $3370.
- In order for a club to calculate an amount per member for the purpose of applying this system to their club membership fee, divide the Club fee by the number of members you estimate you will have during the year. For example if your Club fee is $3,000 and you expect to have approximately 67 members divide $3,000 by 67 which equals $44.77. The Club can then charge whatever amount it deems appropriate.
- There will be a single payment to be made by Clubs no later than 15 September. This will be invoiced by BV mid-July (commencing July 2014) to provide a suitable period of time for Clubs to make their payment prior to the commencement of the Pennant season. Once a Club has made its payment all members indicated by the Club as financial in the BV database will be deemed to be affiliated.
- If the single payment is not fully paid by the due date (15 September) a Club’s membership will be suspended automatically until full payment has been received. The members of that Club will not be entitled to bowl, and no points will be awarded for any pennant games they may play prior to BV receiving payment in full.
- The previous practice of BV invoicing the affiliation fee in two instalments will cease. Reconciliation of Club and BV records will no longer be required. The fee is simply based on last year’s total membership payment, NOT on the number of members at the time of invoicing. This will remove substantial work at Clubs and BV.
CLUB MEMBERSHIP INCENTIVE
For simplicity and as a recruitment incentive for Clubs, there will be no additional BV affiliation fees during the season for new members. We believe this will act as an encouragement for Clubs to actively recruit new members. Once the new members are entered into the BV database by Clubs and marked as financial they will be deemed to be affiliated. As some Clubs offer free first-year club membership to new bowlers, this “no additional BV affiliation fees” policy is a similar arrangement to assist Clubs.
This change is effective as 1 July, 2014
- From 1 July, 2014 Clubs will be solely responsible for updating the BV membership database. All Clubs have been given authorisation to manage their membership in the database, and instructions on how to do so. Accordingly, forms BV4 (New/Previous Membership Registration) & BV6 (Notification of Changes) will cease to exist from this date and no updating will be undertaken at or by BV.
- It is critical that the BV database of members is updated in an accurate and timely manner and any Club that feels it is incapable of maintaining the database in this way should contact Amanda James (email@example.com) at BV for advice.
- Please note that BV has the ability to undertake verification audits of overall club membership including affiliation against competition participation.
- Clearances will continue to be processed by BV as is the case currently. In due course this may become an automated process.
It is recognised that these changes will take time for Clubs to adjust to. Depending on whether a Club’s membership has grown or fallen against the previous year, there will be variations between Clubs when they apportion the fee between members. However, the more a Club can grow its membership the lower the fee on a per capita basis.
The new method is clearly simpler, less time consuming and less complex for both Clubs and BV to administer. BV will closely monitor the new method and its effects to ensure that it is not only as fair and equitable to Clubs as possible but also simple to operate. Clubs are requested not to seek an adjustment to their invoice because of a change in membership as this will not be accommodated.
There are two areas for assistance:
(a) Database Management – Amanda James (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Training will be available for Clubs who may have trouble updating the membership database
(b) Affiliation fee inquiries – Amanda James (email@example.com)
In conclusion may we say that having made the change primarily to simplify work at Clubs and BV we will continue to monitor and assess the new method for appropriateness over the next two years. Clubs’ views will be sought from time to time.