Board Report: September 2014

Hi Everyone,

The August Board meeting was held via a conference phone call on Sunday 24th August. The main items discussed at the meeting were:

  • The Board approved the final audited results for the 2013/14 year which had come through from the Auditor and I note are now out with Clubs.  The Net Operating Surplus ended up being a bit higher than the provisional results at $987,482, which is even closer to the original budget of $1.04 million which was an excellent result.  The final Balance sheet is showing a level of Net Equity of around $721,000, up from $102,000 last year which is equally pleasing as an indication of the improving financial health.
  • The first financial report for the new financial year (July 2014) was also presented.  A copy of the usual reports are attached for your information.  The result for July was a Net Profit of $525,791 against a budget of $82,409.  While a very positive result, this was largely due to timing differences (receiving income earlier than expected), so it is not expected that this level of progress will be maintained right through the year.  We are working for a full year Net Profit of $743,000 and after one month are still forecasting achieving this result.
  • Each year for the AGM, the Constitution requires that the Board proposes a motion to set the annual honoraria for the SLSNZ Chairman and Board members.  This was discussed in order to send out the motion with the pack of documents that went to Clubs on the 29th August.  The fees have been held at the same level for many years ($2,700 for Board members and $6,500 for the Chairman) and this year the proposal is for the Board members honorarium to remain at $2,700 but for the Chairman to increase to $10,000.  This was not a debate that I could take part in (for obvious conflict of interest reasons) but the other Board members did feel that the current honorarium for the Chairman did not reflect the extra time commitment and responsibilities required to fulfil the role of the Chairman.  This matter is now up to the Clubs to decide when they vote on the motion.
  • Speaking of voting I strongly urge those clubs who are not attending the AGM to still participate via a proxy or an electronic (or postal) vote.
  • We have 31 clubs registered as coming to the AGM - down on the 39 from last year.  While that is comfortably above the level needed for a quorum, it is still less than half the membership, and will require some thinking as to what it would take to get more Clubs along.  I note some organisations only provide funding to those that attend their AGM's - but that is perhaps a bit extreme!!
  • Looking at the other main items on the Agenda:
    • Balanced scorecard for the 2013/14 year - the final KPI measures have been sorted out and attached are the full year results.  The Board is very pleased with the overall outcomes and is looking forward  to seeing similar results in the coming year.
    • Board Appointments Panel.  The Board was briefed on the outcomes of the BAP's work - now since communicated to Clubs.  The Board congratulates Trevor Taylor on his re-appointment as an Independent Appointed Board member, Rick Stolwerk (Waipu Cove SLSC) on his appointment as an 'Appointed' Board member, and to Colin Weatherall and Todd Cations- Velvin on being the two recommended candidates for the two 'Elected' positions.  The Board did note the recommendation from the BAP to consider using the one 'Co-opted' position available to increase the diversity on the Board, and this will be discussed in more detail at our October Board meeting (there is no meeting in September due to the AGM).
    • NZLGB Funding Formula.  The Board was briefed on the current formula being used to provide clubs with Operating Grants, ahead of the calculations being made on the funding for the 2014/15 year.  Overall NZLGB funding for the year has just been confirmed at $2.2 million, down $200,000 on last year as had been signalled was coming in the light of challenges NZLGB had with over-allocating money last year.  Only a small part of the funding drop will impact Clubs, which is good news for Clubs, but does put the pressure on SLSNZ.
    • Club Chairs Strategy Workshop Agenda.  The Board endorsed the draft agenda for the Workshop, which has also now been circulated to clubs.
    • Review of the SLSNZ Constitution and Regulations.  The Board noted the recent review by the SLSNZ lawyers on these key documents as part of regular 'housekeeping'.  There were no matters requiring urgent attention but as time allows in the future there are a few minor tidy ups that can occur.  Constitution changes can only take place at an AGM (or Special General meeting), and there are none proposed for this year.  Regulation changes can be made by the Board and a number of minor tidy-ups will be arranged over the next few months and communicated to clubs as they happen.
    • Water Safety NZ.  The upcoming attendance of the Chairman and CEO at the Sector Plan Workshop was noted - this is an important first step in getting a co-ordinated plan for the whole water safety sector to work to.
    • Health & Safety.  Some good progress has been made with getting a better understanding of how the accountability for any accidents that occur to members will be shared between SLSNZ and the Clubs, and this will be in a position to discuss with clubs at the Chairs Strategy Workshop.

Overall, a short but productive meeting!   The next Board meeting will be held in Wellington on Sunday 19th October.  So until my next update…or until we meet at the AGM………..


Yours in surf,


Geoff Hamilton


Surf Life Saving New Zealand