Northeast Motorhome Association Minutes: April 29, 2018

4/29/18 – 7:05 PM

  • B Smith
  • L Snow
  • T Ziobrowski
  • H Soulia
  • J Traphagen
  • D Osterhout
  • J Sennett
  • D Merlino

Terry Metcalfe – Nominating Comm. Chair; Rick Bianco – o/b/o By-Laws Committee Chair, Duane Lindsey

B Smith called the meeting to order and announced that T. Metcalfe was on the call to report o/b/o the Nominating Committee and Rick Bianco would also be joining us but had not yet entered the meeting.

B Smith announced the following meeting rules:

No outside discussion of Board activities.

Keep decisions in the confines of the meeting
Do not share information between board meetings and chapter meetings as items will be announced then.
Respect each other
Keep an open mind
Let speakers finish
Speak your mind be friendly
Remember that we are all volunteers
Leave here as friends
Please keep all conversations on topic
Decisions are made for the good of the Area
Must put feelings aside
Must follow Robert’s rules of order

B Smith asked for a Nominating Committee Report – Terry Metcalfe gave a verbal report including the main points from their report and will email a formal report to the board. A copy of said report is attached to the minutes for the convenience of the Board.

Rick Bianco had now joined the meeting and B Smith asked for a report from the By-Laws Committee. Rick Bianco reported the following recommended change be made to the NEA Constitution & By-Laws: The Bylaws Committee is recommending that Article II sentence 9 should read: In the event of a vacancy, the Executive Board shall elect a replacement to serve until the completion of the unexpired term from a slate of candidates presented by the Nominating Committee. A copy of said report is attached to these minutes for the convenience of the Board. Motion made by T Ziobrowski to accept the By-Laws Report and Recommendation; 2nd by Harley Soulia – Motion carried

D Merlino, Secretary informed the Board that the Minutes of Conference Call – November 11, 2017 and Conference Call March 25, 2018 were submitted to the board via an email on April 11, 2018 and requested approval as submitted. Motion by L Snow to accept 11/11/17 CC minutes as submitted; 2nd by H. Soulia – Motion carried Motion by L Snow to accept 3/25/18 CC minutes as submitted; 2nd by D Osterhout – Motion carried

B Smith – asked for confirmation that changes were made to the 2017 Annual Meeting Minutes and CC Minutes of 10/13/17 per her email and discussion during the 11/12/17 conference call; she sent an email to the secretary with those changes. D Merlino stated that changes have been made, although the 2017 Annual Meeting Minutes have not yet been published to the NEA Board of Directors [Hereinafter referred to as BOD(s)].

T Ziobrowski asked that the “CC Minutes of 4/15” not be documented as a meeting as there was no legal Quorum. Only B Smith and H Soulia were part on the call. All other board members had sent an email notification that they would not be available for that 4/15 conference call due to previous personal commitments. Motion made by L Snow that the 4/15/18 CC Minutes are excluded as a legally recorded meeting as there was no Quorum; 2nd by T Ziobrowski ; B Smith agreed that the 4/15/18 CC Minutes would be changed to read “discussion points” and not minutes; Motion carried with 1 opposed (B Smith)

Treasurers report was given by J Sennett:

Account Balance: $60,345.75
2017 NEA Rally Income: $125,000
Rally Expenses: $86,535
Net Income: $38,469
Refunds: $3,400

A copy of both reports are attached to these minutes for convenience of the Board. Motion made by T Ziobrowski that Treasurer’s Report is accepted as read; 2nd by L Snow – Motion carried

B Smith requested she be given a check book and that J Sennett send a scanned copy of all checks to her attention when written. She stated she would be in touch with him on her way to the home office that week. J Sennett did not feel this was a good idea nor did he see a legitimate reason for having 2 check books. The board agreed that this was not a good idea financially as it would make things difficult for Jim and could present a problem with 2 people having an open check book. Jim & Barbara will discuss further.

*B Smith reported we have 31 Approved Chapters *B Smith asked if there were any topics that needed to be brought before the National Executive Board next week in Cincinnati, OH. T Ziobrowski requested B Smith ask what our (NEA) cost would be to buy shirts, badge holders & etc. to sell at our Area Rally instead of selling o/b/o home office. Is there a discount, etc.; J Traphagen stated that name badges w/lanyards are the highest seller per 2017 FMCA Store Rally Captain, T. Roule

B Smith proposed the following locations for a 2018 Annual Meeting: *Gillette, WY via a conference call with the Executive Board * Wells Beach, MA weekend of September 1st * Susquenango Chapter Labor Day Invitational Rally, Bainbridge NY, Aug. 31– Sept. 3; *Watkins Glen, NY through Rich Trufono, Aug. 22-26 * GEAR in York, PA – she has already received approval from the Eastern Area VP

Significant discussion followed and the board’s consensus was that we keep our Annual Meeting in the Area; there was significant concern that we would not be able to come close to having a quorum in Gillette, WY; Watkins Glen and Wells Beach would not be a viable date for 3 or more Executive Board members as it interferes with the Labor Day Invitational.

Motion made by T Ziobrowski that if we are going to hold an Annual Meeting that it be held in the Northeast Area; 2nd by L Snow – Motion carried; 1 opposed (BS) *J Traphagen proposed that we send a notice to all BOD Members as we had discussed in a previous meeting letting them know that we might possibly have an Annual Meeting and obtain a consensus from the BODs as to whether they would attend or not. Donna will send out an email to all BOD Members accordingly. *B Smith would like to contact National regarding a meeting notice and she will let us know her decision by email tomorrow (4/30/18).

*After further discussion as to the question of where in the NEA the meeting would be held there was a general board consensus that the meeting be held during the Labor Day Susquenango Chapter Rally in Bainbridge for the following main reasons: *Helping an NEA Chapter have a better rally *It is an easy to get to location *4 board members would already be there and some BOD members as well *There is a large indoor hall for the meeting *BODs would have another reason to go besides driving that distance for just a meeting as it is a full rally with entertainment, food & vendors *No formal decision was made as to the exact location but the majority of the board agreed that Bainbridge would be the best place. This decision was tabled for another meeting

L Snow stated that our meeting has now reached 90 minutes and we agreed to hold our meetings to 1 hour.

Motion made by L Snow to adjourn the meeting; 2nd by J Traphagen – Motion carried; B Smith adjourned the meeting.

Donna Merlino
NEA Executive Board

Approved 04/29/2018 – – Posted on 04/30/2018

FMCA is branching out


Spring has sprung! RVers who have been in winter “hibernation” start to turn their attention to preparing their homes on wheels for the upcoming travel season. Members of FMCA, a Cincinnati, Ohio-based organization for RV owners, are among those making plans for spring and summer travels.

FMCA members look to the association to provide them with benefits and services that enhance their travels. A vote of the membership of this group in late 2017 has made those services and benefits available to a wider audience of RV owners.

Prior to this vote, motorhomes — motorized RVs — had been the focus of the member-owned club, which dates back to 1963.

When asked about FMCA branching out to welcome even more RV owners to its family, FMCA national president Jon Walker said, “We’re excited to be able to use the expertise and knowledge FMCA has developed over the years within the motorhome realm to now serve the needs and interests of owners of all self-contained RVs. After all, the RV lifestyle is more about people than it is about the equipment RVers have chosen for their travels.”

Benefits offered by FMCA include a tire-purchasing program; special member-only rates on roadside assistance, mobile internet plans from Verizon and Sprint, and RV insurance; a monthly magazine in print and digital formats; and the FMCAssist Medical Emergency and Travel Assistance Plan, valued at $105 per family and included in the annual dues.

The cost to join FMCA is just $60 for the first year and $50 per year thereafter. The first-year fee includes a set of membership plates to display on one’s RV. Multiyear dues discounts are available.

FMCA is unique among the major RV clubs, because it is the only one owned and governed by its membership.

To join or to learn more, visit or call (800) 543-3622 or (513) 474-3622.

FMCA is an international organization for families who own and enjoy the use of self-contained recreation vehicles (RVs). The association maintains its national headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio, and currently has more than 75,000 active member families. FMCA offers its members a number of benefits, including a subscription to its monthly magazine; a medical emergency and travel assistance program valued at $105 per family; a tire purchasing program; group rates on a roadside assistance program and on RV and auto insurance; and discounted rates for RV tours and caravans. Perhaps the most important benefit of FMCA membership is the camaraderie and friendships that develop among people enjoying the common interest of RV travel. The organization can be reached at (513) 474-3622 or (800) 543-3622 and on the web at