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Weatherford
Aug. 30, 2001, 03:42 PM
A perspective from Alan Balch as released this evening.

I had an email from Alan yesterday in which he expressed his absolute heartfelt sadness that the SPORT is the ultimate loser here; even if "our" side wins, the sport still loses. I agree with him that that is a travesty.

And I disagree in some respects, too. The changes that have happened at the NF have already benefitted the sport and will continue to do so. All of our discussion and involvment in the changes - from all sides - is a marked improvement on anything that has happened in the past. Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to be involved in some form or another.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> DATE: August 30, 2001

TO: United States Equestrian Team Board of Trustees, National Advisory Council, Friends and Supporters

FROM: Alan F. Balch, Trustee

SUBJECT: USET Corporate Management and Governance

On Tuesday, the USET held another meeting of its 2000 Board of Trustees in the wake of the New Jersey Superior Court?s finding that USET corporate actions this year were ?null and void.?

The meeting was disappointing at best. Another opportunity to have meaningful discussion for the good of the sport was lost. Instead, we all heard some of the harshest rhetoric yet from USET leadership, marked by reckless personal characterizations and insistence that no matter the cost, in either precious credibility or money, the USET?s leaders are determined to waste even more of both.

What we did not hear was any response to my call for us to discuss the product of the mediation, either openly or confidentially, so we could see how easy it would be to solve this entire matter of the sport?s governance, with both organizations retaining their historical corporate structures, identities, and roles. Please ask yourself why USET leadership instead insists on such strident rhetoric, and persists in its senseless USOC challenge.

Also, please consider that there was no discussion about the leadership?s apparent decision over 2 months ago, disclosed for the first time in this meeting, to arrange for $2-million in borrowing and spending without even so much as a meeting to evaluate its reason or need. Nor was there any discussion about the implications and exposures of the announcement we heard that the USET International Competition and Training Endowment (which we have always been advised is permanently restricted) might apparently now be invaded to fund current operations, including the costly legal bills being incurred. Let us hope Armand misspoke when he said, ?we will have to use our endowment to sustain us.?

Are these actions in the best interest of either the USET or the sport? Of course, they are not.

Though I doubt anyone could have been persuaded otherwise, I want to point out that only a small fraction of the total legal and other expenses incurred by USET this year came about because of the lawsuit to ensure access of all trustees to the information they are entitled to see. The extraordinary legal and related expenses nearing $500,000 or so at this point come almost entirely from the USOC challenge, which was filed first, without the authority of the board or even the officers of the USET, and which act even was contrary to the corporation?s bylaws.

So now we are at the point where yet a third ?annual meeting? has had to be scheduled, all apparently to serve the needs of litigation commenced by USET leadership. Try as it might to put the responsibility for this disaster elsewhere, the current USET leadership, and it alone, knows why this senseless tragedy for our sport is continuing, when the mediation has shown us the way for it to end.

At the meeting now scheduled for 1 p.m., Wednesday, September 12, at Gladstone, let us all hope we will finally be able to participate in some definitive discussions and receive satisfactory information.

<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Weatherford
Aug. 30, 2001, 03:42 PM
A perspective from Alan Balch as released this evening.

I had an email from Alan yesterday in which he expressed his absolute heartfelt sadness that the SPORT is the ultimate loser here; even if "our" side wins, the sport still loses. I agree with him that that is a travesty.

And I disagree in some respects, too. The changes that have happened at the NF have already benefitted the sport and will continue to do so. All of our discussion and involvment in the changes - from all sides - is a marked improvement on anything that has happened in the past. Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to be involved in some form or another.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> DATE: August 30, 2001

TO: United States Equestrian Team Board of Trustees, National Advisory Council, Friends and Supporters

FROM: Alan F. Balch, Trustee

SUBJECT: USET Corporate Management and Governance

On Tuesday, the USET held another meeting of its 2000 Board of Trustees in the wake of the New Jersey Superior Court?s finding that USET corporate actions this year were ?null and void.?

The meeting was disappointing at best. Another opportunity to have meaningful discussion for the good of the sport was lost. Instead, we all heard some of the harshest rhetoric yet from USET leadership, marked by reckless personal characterizations and insistence that no matter the cost, in either precious credibility or money, the USET?s leaders are determined to waste even more of both.

What we did not hear was any response to my call for us to discuss the product of the mediation, either openly or confidentially, so we could see how easy it would be to solve this entire matter of the sport?s governance, with both organizations retaining their historical corporate structures, identities, and roles. Please ask yourself why USET leadership instead insists on such strident rhetoric, and persists in its senseless USOC challenge.

Also, please consider that there was no discussion about the leadership?s apparent decision over 2 months ago, disclosed for the first time in this meeting, to arrange for $2-million in borrowing and spending without even so much as a meeting to evaluate its reason or need. Nor was there any discussion about the implications and exposures of the announcement we heard that the USET International Competition and Training Endowment (which we have always been advised is permanently restricted) might apparently now be invaded to fund current operations, including the costly legal bills being incurred. Let us hope Armand misspoke when he said, ?we will have to use our endowment to sustain us.?

Are these actions in the best interest of either the USET or the sport? Of course, they are not.

Though I doubt anyone could have been persuaded otherwise, I want to point out that only a small fraction of the total legal and other expenses incurred by USET this year came about because of the lawsuit to ensure access of all trustees to the information they are entitled to see. The extraordinary legal and related expenses nearing $500,000 or so at this point come almost entirely from the USOC challenge, which was filed first, without the authority of the board or even the officers of the USET, and which act even was contrary to the corporation?s bylaws.

So now we are at the point where yet a third ?annual meeting? has had to be scheduled, all apparently to serve the needs of litigation commenced by USET leadership. Try as it might to put the responsibility for this disaster elsewhere, the current USET leadership, and it alone, knows why this senseless tragedy for our sport is continuing, when the mediation has shown us the way for it to end.

At the meeting now scheduled for 1 p.m., Wednesday, September 12, at Gladstone, let us all hope we will finally be able to participate in some definitive discussions and receive satisfactory information.

<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

SoEasy
Aug. 30, 2001, 04:30 PM
So sad ...

Will the Court or the USOC eventually decide that the act of filing the Challenge was one of the null and void acts of the USET Board?

Lucassb
Aug. 30, 2001, 04:48 PM
I believe the USOC must (and will) confine itself solely to the issue of identifying and naming the sport's NGB - as far as I know it has no jurisdiction over matters such as the technical legality of the board who crafted the challenge which has been filed.

However, I would have to guess that they are not blind to the legal issues which have arisen, and would assume that the recent NJ court decision cannot have made a favorable impression upon them.

If in fact the USET has or attempts to utilize restricted funds from an endowment to meet expenses unrelated to the stated uses the of the fund, however, I believe that matter can and should be brought to the attention of the USOC officials, as it speaks to the ability of the USET to properly raise, maintain and disburse funds for the development and training of the riders they are charged to promote.

It has to be said that in light of the not too distant scandals over allegations of corruption and undue influence in the Olympic movement, there must be particular sensitivity to any hint of impropriety - especially financial impropriety.

Methinks the USET's actions will be difficult to defend, although I am sure with the resources they have brought to bear on this issue, it will not be for want of a significant, extremely expensive effort.

I believe that Alan Balch is correct in his assessment of the loss this battle represents to the sport from a financial standpoint. $500,000 would go a long way to foster developing riders, improve training opportunities, or even <gasp> promote the sport to the public.

However, I also agree with Weatherford that the dialog that has been provoked by this challenge is nothing but good for the sport. When times are (relatively) good, it is easy to be complacent and to make excuses for not getting involved and pushing for improvement. I do think that we will look back on this period of change as one that was a necessary evil in some ways... hopefully one that will result in a greatly improved NGB and a more engaged membership and audience.

<end soapbox>

Heather
Aug. 30, 2001, 05:35 PM
I heard about this bit with the endowment fund earlier this evening and was HORRIFIED. I cannot imagine a lawyer would believe this to be in any way legal or acceptable. That he would so breezily announce his intentions is even more amazing to me (I mean if you're going to break or at least heavily bend the law, you'd think you'd want to hide it more).

In fact, the endowment is supposed to be only for the funding of athletes in competitions, and its use has been, I'm told, strictly outlined. The USET claims that without it (the USET), the athletes "will be lost" and thus they are justified in using the endowment fund to pay for their legal and operating costs. I find this morally dubious at best, legally reprehensible at worst. Were I an aactive athlete, I would certainly consider taking steps to file an injuction against my endowment being used up in such a manner.

My dear, departed father-in-law gave to that fund every year for close to 30 years, because he believed in the virtue and important of equestrian sport. To think his money would be used in such a manner makes me ill. I'm glad he's not here to see it.

Groundline
Aug. 31, 2001, 06:44 AM
If I were a USET trustee, I would be very, very worried about what Balch wrote.

In a clever way, maybe too clever for his own good, isn't he saying that THEY are responsible if they look the other way? HE may be off the hook, since he keeps talking about it, but maybe he is not either? Maybe they are trying to force him to resign or something.

Seems like whatever USET says now will be very important. They either have to deny they are going to use endowment, or justify it. I just don't see any other way right now.

Lucassb
Aug. 31, 2001, 07:34 AM
that by making that letter public, Alan Balch is trying to prevent the USET leadership from touching the endowment. If there is a significant outcry, then it is much harder to take such an action. No doubt this also makes an impression on the USOC, but I think they would have been made aware of any financial impropriety more effectively during the hearing process, so I doubt that that was the motivation.

It appears the USET leadership is unused to working under such scrutiny and having their decisions aired "in the light of day," so to speak. The very strong impression that has been made is indeed one of an old boys club that has been afforded considerable latitude in the past - and frankly, with the past record of success, one might think that no one was looking too closely as long as the medal count was sufficient.

These days, with the advent of communications media such as the internet, and the more litigious environment that we all operate in, it is clearly a whole new ballgame. As our sport's base of support is broadened and as we seek the support of those outside the traditional inner circle, more transparency has been demanded.

Combine that with the escalation in costs as well as the changing nature of what has become in many ways just another business venture (vs. a sport of the wealthy) and no wonder there is dissent.

We've created a friction point between the last remaining vestiges of the "old guard" and the new participants. Change is hard for everyone, and it is unrealistic to expect that those individuals who previously enjoyed their ability to exercise unfettered "authority" over Team activities would just smile and hand over the reins to those who would govern differently.

I would think that one of the reasons that the annual shortfall in operating $$ is normally made up by personal contributions from the Board members is not (only) because they so generously wish to support the sport, but also because those checks purchase the right to maintain the influence of those individuals and avoid the necessity of reaching out to "the riding public" in a way that also requires disclosure and inclusion.

wtywmn4
Aug. 31, 2001, 08:17 AM
there will be no winners

The total number of bodies laying by the road side seems to be growing. The damage that is done by all of this, loss of crediability for both sides, does not make for any winners. The time and funds spent in fighting will be costly to the membership as well.

It's very sad to me that possible sponsors are seeing this. I know that changes needed to be made. But the means by which it has come about, won't have people running to their check books. And if that occurs, aren't we right back in the same situation?

Portia
Aug. 31, 2001, 08:23 AM
I recall distinctly that when the USET solicited the donations to the endowment fund -- please give X amount each quarter for a total of X over 3 years, which I pledged to do and did do faithfully until the USET filed its NGB chalelnge -- it was for the express purpose of creating a permanent capital fund that would generate interest which would be a permanent, secure, and reliable source of funding athlete programs.

If the USET uses the endowment funds for regular operating expenses, and depletes that fund, I would consider it nothing short of a fraud on the donors.

Absolutely unacceptable.

Beans
Aug. 31, 2001, 08:53 AM
If the USET does intend to attempt to use money from their endowment for daily operating expenses or this legal battle, I cannot believe this use wouldn't land them back in NJ Superior Court with yet another challenge by someone who contributed money - regardless of the amount.

I am also very dis-heartened to see that the meeting just past was handled in an adversarial manner and not moving toward some non-combative resolution to this conflict. This isn't some optional merger or acquisition - this is a mandated change by the USOC that will happen - structure as yet to be determined.

This is just such a sad, sad situation and the sum of wasted money that could have gone into the sport is staggering.

Portia
Aug. 31, 2001, 09:05 AM
I attended the USOC Membership & Credentials Committee meeting in San Antonio last February over whether the AHSA and USET situation was in compliance with the USOC by-laws and the Ted Stevens Amateur Sports Act. The USET filed its challenge just the day or two before the meeting.

I recall that during that meeting Dr. Leone and the USET delegation, in connection with the USET's argument that the AHSA international programs were "all smoke and mirrors," made a big point of how the USET athlete programs for the year were all fully funded and that therefore such programs were secure. If those programs were fully funded back in February, what happened to that money? What did the USET do with the funding for the athlete programs that it said it already had in place last February?

Erin
Aug. 31, 2001, 09:09 AM
A question that's slightly off the topic... but when is the USOC supposed to decide all of this again? I hope it's sooner rather than later, before this fiasco gets even worse. /infopop/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif

AM
Aug. 31, 2001, 09:17 AM
I just looked at the USET website (pretty pathetic - still has an application for the International Supports' Tent at the Sydney Olympics). The hearing is in New York on September 24-26 if I recall correctly. It also listed a second hearing about October 27 in Salt Lake City before the USOC board I think.

Lucassb
Aug. 31, 2001, 09:17 AM
From the Notice of Public Hearing:

In accordance with Article VIII, Section 3 (C) of the United States Olympic Committee ("USOC") Constitution, and Section 220528(d) of The Ted Stevens Olympic and Amateur Sports Act, this serves as public notice of two public hearings to be held in this matter. The first hearing shall be held before the Hearing Panel appointed by the USOC President to hear the matter on September 24, 25 and 26, 2001 in New York, New York. The second hearing shall be held before the USOC Board of Directors on October 27-28 in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Weatherford
Aug. 31, 2001, 09:20 AM
The Public hearings in front of the USOC are the 24, 25, 26 of September in New York City.

I do not have the details as to time and place.

See you there, sadly /infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

SGray
Aug. 31, 2001, 09:24 AM
does anyone know who attended?

----On Tuesday, the USET held another meeting of its 2000 Board of Trustees in the wake of the New Jersey Superior Court?s finding that USET corporate actions this year were ?null and void.?

specifcally, did this include members that were tossed off the board in earlier actions? (or did that not include Trustees, only Board members?)

Lucassb
Aug. 31, 2001, 09:29 AM
see you there...

Portia
Aug. 31, 2001, 09:35 AM
This is from the thread reporting on what happened at the USOC M&C meeting, with the summary of what the USET argued then:

USET Presentation
Armand Leone --
The USET is here to ensure that athlete programs continue without interruption. The AHSA can't and won't do that. The AHSA is a horse shows organization; it puts on horse shows, it does not perform the functions of the NGB.

The USET has performed the functions of an NGB for 50 years, funding and fielding teams. The USET is an athlete driven organization.

The AHSA is not able or ready to take on athlete programs. THe AHSA has no athlete programs or funding in place, no discipline support staff, no coaches hired, no experience in training. The AHSA proposal is nothing but a concept based on the wishful thinking of consultants. If it tries to take over the athlete programs, it will fail. The USET is real, it is in place and the programs are in place. The USET cares about the athletes.

Bob Standish --
USET has the staff experienced in representing equestrian athletes. The key staff person is the discipline director for each discipline, who has almost intimate knowledge of its athletes and their needs. The AHSA doesn't have that.

The USET has corporate sponsors for about $2 million. That sponsorship is in danger and the USET risks losing support from individuals if it is disenfranchised. It has an endowment program of almost $10 million pledged, and individual contributions.

Mark Pilowar (sp?), CFO --
The Team is financially strong. It has had excellent audit letters from the USOC and is the only group to have received 2 perfect audit letters.

Benz interrupts -- We need to address the narrow issue of irreparable harm.

Pilowar -- For 2001, the USET has budgeted $1.9 million for Olympic disciplines and $3.3 million for non-Olympic disciplines, a total budget of $4.6 million for athlete programs, which is fully funded.

Jim Wolfe --
The USET has a High Performance Plan for each discipline, including a high performance pipeline for riders for each discipline. He lists various development and training programs including for juniors and young riders.

The High Performance Plan deals also with setting the standards for selection of teams, and those take time to put together.

The USET also serves the athletes by hiring coaches and staff, and that is not done overnight. The contracts with Mark Phillips take months to negotiate. Getting Klaus Balkenhol is a real coup. They also have coaches for other disciplines, including David O'Connor for eventing young riders, and is working on finding an official coach for show jumping.

The USET also arranges tours for athletes to compete abroad, which is absolutely necessary to international success. And the USET arranges corporate sponsorship for events like Rolex, who donates $350,000 for the Rolex three day event. The USET also deals with the USOC in [human] athlete drug testing programs and coordination.

The USET people have established relationships necessary for preparation for international competitions. He books hotel rooms for athletes, coaches, and owners, and examines horse shipping arrangements.

All of that takes time to set up and develop, and the AHSA can't do it.

Mike Huber --
He came up through the USCTA, which provides a clear path to the elite levels through its horse trials and three day event competitions to the USET. David is right in that the elite athletes do continue to compete at the grass roots levels because of the horses, and there is a clear path to the elite levels. [He does not mention that the USCTA horse trials and events that provide that clear path are all AHSA events]

Bonnie Jenkins --
She recites a list of USET programs and competitions, including the USET Talent Search classes in show jumping and the Equestrian Festival at Gladstone. [She doesn't mention that the USET Talent Search are individual classes held at AHSA shows]

Robert Dover --
As he grew up riding, he always dreamed of being a member of the USET. The AHSA was just a group he had to belong to to be able to show at the lower levels.

As he read through the AHSA proposal, he kept thinking "this is all smoke and mirrors." It's all plans and proposals, nothing concrete or in place.

It's a matter of trust and the athletes trust the USET.

Armand Leone --
They've heard from the people who do the work, not "consultants." The USET has the programs in place. The AHSA is not ready to take on the USET's responsibilities. The AHSA budget is not sufficient to fund the athletes.

End of USET presentation

Here's the link to the whole thread if anybody wants to read it:
Report of USOC Membership & Credentials Meeting (http://chronofhorse.infopop.net/2/OpenTopic?a=tpc&s=691099205&f=602099205&m=1430923021&r=2770906021#2770906021)

Heather
Aug. 31, 2001, 10:06 AM
Would just like to add that the USET can crow about its "athlete programs" all it wants ( per Portia's transcripts) but I had to laugh about its "junior and young riders programs" because it doesn't give dime one to the North American Young Riders Championships--the AHSA gives the most (and brought in title sponsor Stateline) and the USCTA, USDF, CEF, and Mexican Federation all make smaller contributions.

poltroon
Aug. 31, 2001, 10:22 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Pilowar -- For 2001, the USET has budgeted $1.9 million for Olympic disciplines and $3.3 million for non-Olympic disciplines, a
total budget of $4.6 million for athlete programs, which is fully funded.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

It seems curious to me that they budgeted 1 1/2 times as much money on 3 non-Olympic disciplines - which would be reining, driving, and endurance, since they didn't add vaulting to their oversight until this last (now null) meeting. I don't see the rationale for spending more on those smaller programs than on the three Olympic sports.

BTW - they can't get Balch to resign his position as a trustee at USET - it is an ex oficio position reserved for the AHSA president, whoever that may be.

Bostonian
Sep. 1, 2001, 05:35 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Portia:

Bob Standish --

The USET has corporate sponsors for about $2 million.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Is Standish counting the $350,000 from ROLEX that Wolf mentions in Portia's report? Is he counting the $600,000+ from the USOC (and its corporate partners)? Is he counting any restricted gifts from corporations to the national endowment fund?

Who out there, besides Standish and Wolf, believes that ROLEX Watch USA wouldn't decide to DIRECTLY sponsor the organizers of the four star event - Equestrian Events International, Inc. (and its very personable/professional executive director Janie Atkinson) - if Wolf and Standish weren't involved, taking their percentage?

Of course ROLEX would continue to support EEI, this country's best Eventing athletes, and the 60,000 spectators who travel to the KY Horse Park to cheer them on (and buy Rolex watches)!

Same with the BET/USET Talent Search. The Johnson family supports the program because they love the idea of continuing the growth of tomorrow's Olympic medalists - they're not sponsoring the program because of their relationship with Standish and Wolf.

If the remainder of the 2 million Standish speaks of is derived from the same type of reasoning - as Balch said - "the sky is not falling."

(thanks again Portia, truly grateful for your efforts!)

Portia
Sep. 1, 2001, 06:53 PM
Well, I can confirm this for you Bostonian (and thanks for the thanks) -- During the interational open forum at the AHSA annual meeting last January, Armand Leone made the assertion that the USET was concerned about losing sponsorship if they went through with the consolidation plan the AHSA was proposing. I stood up and asked specifically if any of the corporate sponsors had indicated that they would not continue to support the USET if it was not the NGB or if it merged with the AHSA. Dr. Leone replied that no corporate sponsors had given any indication they would withdraw sponsorship if the USET did not become NGB or merged with the AHSA. Dr. Leone said that the sponsors they were talking about were certain unidentified individual donors who had told the USET they would not continue to support the organization in such circumstances.

So, according to Dr. Leone, the USET was concerned with threats from a few private donors, not from any corporate sponsors.

If I can find my report on the AHSA Annual Meeting where I reported this at the time, I'll post the link.

Weatherford
Sep. 3, 2001, 02:26 AM
From Nancy Jaffer's colimn in the Star Ledger:

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> THE SAGA CONTINUES As a result of the ongoing clash between USA Equestrian (formerly the American Horse Shows Association) and the U.S. Equestrian Team over which should be American horse sports' national governing body, the team has financial problems and had to obtain a $2 million line of credit, USET leader Armand Leone Jr. revealed last week. "The AHSA's relentless negative press and letter bombardment put many members and sponsors temporarily on the sideline pending the outcome of the upcoming hearing," he said. Leone explained the line of credit, personally guaranteed by several team members, was need to fulfill USET training and competition commitments. Calling the efforts of USAE President Alan Balch and his organization "malicious," Leone added, "We can survive the war of attrition that the AHSA has tried to wage."

Once the matter is settled, Leone expressed confidence in the team's ability to rebound financially. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Caruso
Sep. 3, 2001, 02:53 AM
If I am reading this correctly, Mr. Leone is saying the USET had to float a loan because they can't raise operating expenses; their donor base has objected to this debacle - which of course, the AHSA started and is pursuing both in and out of the Press?

Hmm, sounds like a different fight to me.

Let's see, the AHSA is a bad guy because it is opening its doors and ears to its members? Because it is posting all the information that is non-confidential and CAN be posted to the members? Because it has had open meetings, and active involvement from all levels of the sport? Because it is active encouraging that kind of involvement? Because Mr. Balch REQUESTED and was DENIED access to financial information to which he has a LEGAL RIGHT, not to mention a LEGAL RESPONSIBILITY, to see? Because all those who favored a compromise and mediation were kicked off the Board of the USET? (Whoops, they are back on now!)

I think his eyes are closed.

Essentially, as I read this with my own spin, the USET is floating a $2 million dollar loan - which in the past would have been one or two checks from major contributors - because those contributors don't want to pay the legal fees (from, IMHO incompetent and greedy lawyers) that they are encouraging the Team to incur in this mess. Ah hum.

Meaning, they'd write those checks if the money were going towards "their" riders' and "their" horses' Team adventures??

No, instead, blame it on the SMALL contributor - those of us who only contribute - I think it was 10 or 20% - to the USET annual funds?!! Blame it on those of us who CARE enough to be heard and express our disappointment and even rage that this CRAP is going on!

This sounds to me like some perverted sort of blackmail - is there some ulterior motive behind all this? Are we missing something?? WHAT IS THE POINT??? Why is it SO ESSENTIAL to the USET to be a separate and SOMINATING organization? The competence at the ewxecutive level there has already been called into question - do we WANT that?

Time for more letters. This time INSIST on compromise!

(Donning flame suit!)

Bostonian
Sep. 3, 2001, 07:32 AM
After the glowing financial report USET's CFO Mark Piwowar was obviously told to present to the USOC in the report Portia shared with all of us, if you were Leone and you read what SoEasy shared on another thread:

"The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filed a civil complaint yesterday, charging three auditors for the now-defunct Allegheny health system with participating in a "fraudulent scheme" to hide the hospital network's declining finances."

Would you want the USOC, or anyone else for that matter, to think that your short-fall ($2 million - GASP!) was ANYTHING BUT sudden -unpredictable - and/or someone else's fault??!!

Please.

Weatherford
Sep. 3, 2001, 11:32 AM
How many other NF's from other fields have an Executive Director who makes (and I have heard this from a number of sources, so I assume it is true or darned close) $250,000 per year? (not including perks)

How many other NF's (OR NON-PROFITS, for that matter) have as many executive level employees who make more than $100,000 per year (not including perks)??

I used to be in the non-profit sector. Assistant Director of a museum. Let's see, I started at $10,000 per year - and this was NOT even 25 years ago!

And speaking of accountants, where are those salaries included in the Income Statement? Can't be included in Salaries and/or Overhead, as those numbers are remarkably low. Maybe they are hidden under Training??

/infopop/emoticons/icon_mad.gif /infopop/emoticons/icon_mad.gif

vineyridge
Sep. 3, 2001, 12:49 PM
One of the documents that has been posted on the NGB fight referred to an insurrection at USET that took over control of the organization, maybe in the 80's, maybe in the 90's.

Anybody know what the reference was to? I'm assuming it was that insurrection that put the current administration in power.

Be interesting to know whether the USET that we have been so proud of for its achievements in the past isn't the USET that we have today.

Erin
Sep. 3, 2001, 01:16 PM
Salaries as stated on the USET's IRS Form 990 (a document all charities must make available) for 1999:

Robert Standish (exec. dir.): $239,630
Mark Piwowar (controller): $108,693
Patricia McGrath (development): $140,500

The whole form is available online at Guidestar.com as a PDF document. Just search for U.S. Equestrian Team.

http://www.guidestar.com

The AHSA's is available there as well.

[This message was edited by Erin on Sep. 03, 2001 at 04:54 PM.]

brilyntrip
Sep. 3, 2001, 02:29 PM
$239 thousand dollars?? a year plus perks ???

Weatherford
Sep. 3, 2001, 04:15 PM
That was in 1999!!

Take a look yourselves if you don't believe it!

wtywmn4
Sep. 3, 2001, 06:43 PM
Anyone have a calculator??? This IS very interesting.

Bostonian
Sep. 3, 2001, 07:32 PM
Jim Wolf and Bonnie Jenkins reportedly make what Piwowar makes NOW, and Piwowar was given a healthy raise in 2000.

As far as Standish goes, he must have something on somebody because his education and/or experience does not demand those kind of dollars in the real business world, let alone the "charitable" world of non-profits.

I cannot wait to see how this turns out!

[This message was edited by Bostonian on Sep. 04, 2001 at 05:20 PM.]

Bostonian
Sep. 3, 2001, 07:45 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by brilyntrip:
$239 thousand dollars?? a year plus perks ???<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

One of the 15+ former USET employees gave me a typical example of the deals Standish negotiates with the very "USET" sponsors he's afraid of losing: in order to become the official SUV of Hamilton Farm - Paul Miller GIVES a new Range Rover to Standish every few thousand miles.

For his sake, I hope Bayer is giving him plenty of aspirin!

Buh-bye.

PDQBach
Sep. 3, 2001, 11:31 PM
I dunno, Bostonian, last time I was there, he was driving a Mercedes SUV, not a Range Rover...

brilyntrip
Sep. 4, 2001, 07:26 AM
but am I alone in thinking thats alot of money??/

Weatherford
Sep. 4, 2001, 07:34 AM
Absolutely, brilyntrip! It is a shocking lot of money and considerably more than MOST not for profit ED's! Certainly considerably more than other NP's of the size and scale of the USET.

Ditto all the other salaries!

I will look for the salary figured NP's and post them when I find them.

Beans
Sep. 4, 2001, 07:55 AM
I believe Paul Miller also sells Mercedes Benz. They are one of the sponsors that came on board last year.

Lucassb
Sep. 4, 2001, 08:08 AM
I think you got it just about exactly right.

I do think it seems like good news if in fact so many USET "supporters" have removed themselves to the sidelines and refused to participate and/or fund the Team's current strategy and tactics.

IMO, it *must* be demonstrated to the USET and its executives that it is not acceptable OR POSSIBLE to continue to run the Team the way it has been done in the recent past.

While it is sad that the staggeringly huge sums of money spent on this effort have considerably diminished the funds available for development and promotion of the sport, if it results in a more open, honest and businesslike executive group at the USET, I do believe it will have been worth the effort.

Portia
Sep. 4, 2001, 08:32 AM
This is one member and donor who is not temporarily on the sidelines pending the outcome of the hearing. Unfortunately, until USET management practices change, I cannot in good conscience send them money.

I want to support our international athletes, but I will find another way to do so.

wtywmn4
Sep. 4, 2001, 09:00 AM
You are not alone.. Portia. Several people have told me they are doing exactly that. They hope there will be an end soon.

Bostonian
Sep. 4, 2001, 09:05 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Weatherford:
From Nancy Jaffer's colimn in the Star Ledger:

Quote: "Once the matter is settled, Leone expressed confidence in the team's ability to rebound financially. "<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

No offense intended to the individual members/donors out there, but should the Team be named NGB, it appears it's going to be business as usual for Standish, Piwowar, Wolf, etc.

Very sad.

Beans
Sep. 4, 2001, 09:47 AM
And I live in NJ and worked in NY in a professional Financial position. My husband continues to work in the International Financial arena and HE was shocked at these salaries.

DMK
Sep. 4, 2001, 10:13 AM
It's not so much how much you get paid that concerns me (I've seen the CEO's job, and quite frankly, I don't want it /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif ). It's what you do to earn your salary that concerns me.

Quite frankly, those salaries could have been cut in half, and I would still be disappointed with the results.

Weatherford
Sep. 4, 2001, 10:23 AM
may be ignored, but is HIGH on the IRS's list of things to examine. They call it "Intermediate Sanctions" I find especially interesting the three IRS criteria found near the bottom.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>
About Intermediate Sanctions
Note: The following discussion is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to serve as legal or tax advice. For specific information about excise taxes on excess benefit transactions ("intermediate sanctions"), consult your attorney or tax adviser.

Intermediate sanctions, known formally as "excise taxes on excess benefit transactions," are fines that the Internal Revenue Service imposes when particular individuals associated with a tax-exempt organization receive compensation or benefits that exceed the value of services, goods, or donations they have provided the organization.

Intermediate sanctions fall under Section 4958 of the Internal Revenue Code and can be levied on excess benefit transactions that occurred on or after September 14, 1995.

Background

Congress created intermediate sanctions on July 30, 1996, as part of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights 2. Before then, the IRS had only two ways to respond to excess benefit transactions: (1) ignore the transgression or (2) revoke the nonprofit's tax-exempt status.

In many cases, revoking an organization's nonprofit status was seen as too severe a penality, partially because it punished innocent parties in the organization and the people the nonprofit served. Ignoring excess benefits transactions was equally unsatisfactory, however. Intermediate sanctions fall between the two extremes and penalize the offenders rather than the entire organization and its beneficiaries.

On January 10, 2001, the Treasury Department issued temporary regulations relating to intermediate sanctions; the temporary regulations will remain in force through January 9, 2004.


Individuals Affected by Intermediate Sanctions

Only persons who are "in a position to exercise substantial influence over the affairs of" a 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization and their family members are subject to intermediate sanctions. The law terms such individuals "disqualified persons." They include, but are not limited to:

A nonprofit organization's founder, president, chief executive officer, chief operating officer, treasurer, and chief financial officer
Voting members of a nonprofit's governing body
Persons with more than 35 percent of a nonprofit organization's combined voting power, profits, or beneficial interests
Substantial contributors
A disqualified person's spouse
A disqualified person's siblings, ancestors, children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and their spouses
Organization managers who "knowingly, willfully, and without reasonable cause" participate in an excess benefit transaction can also be subject to intermediate sanctions.

Amount of Penalty

For disqualified persons, the excise tax for each excess benefit transaction is 25 percent of the amount over the true value of the services or item. An additional 200 percent can be charged if the excess benefit is not corrected by a certain date.

Organization managers who "knowingly, willfully, and without reasonable cause" participate in an excess benefit transaction are liable for 10 percent of the excess, not to exceed $10,000 per transaction.

Rebuttable Presumption

The regulations define three criteria that can be used to establish that a transaction was not an excess benefit transaction:

The transaction was approved in advance by an authorized body of the nonprofit organization composed of individuals who do not have a conflict of interest
The authorized body obtained and relied upon appropriate data, such as a compensation study or proof of fair market value, as to comparability before making its decision
The authorized body adequately documented the basis for its determination at the time it made its decision.
If these criteria are met, it becomes the IRS's responsibility to prove that an excess benefit transaction was made.

For More Information

Steven T. Miller, director of Exempt Organizations at the IRS, has written an analysis of the intermediate sanction regulations. It is available on the IRS Web site at http://www.irs.gov/bus_info/eo/m4958art.pdf.
A thorough discussion about intermediate sanctions, including examples of what is and is not an excess benefit transaction and who is and is not considered a disqualified person, precedes the temporary regulations in the Federal Register. The discussion and the regulations are available on the U.S. Government Printing Office Web site at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=2001_register&docid=fr10ja01-31.pdf. (The document may take a few minutes to load.)
Sources

Taxpayer Bill of Rights 2. U.S. Statutes at Large 110 (1452-1481.)

U.S. Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service. 26 CFR Parts 53, 301 and 602: Excise Taxes on Excess Benefit Transactions; Final Rule and Proposed Rule. Federal Register 66, no. 7 (January 10, 2001): 2144-2172.

Suzanne E. Coffman, June 2001
� 2001, Philanthropic Research, Inc.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Beans
Sep. 4, 2001, 10:35 AM
the legal advise the USET has paid for to date, I'd have to presume their accounting knowledge of IRS standards is probably on the same level.

Erin
Sep. 4, 2001, 10:43 AM
Just a reminder, folks... you are welcome to post facts (see the BB rules for definition of a "fact" /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif ) and you're welcome to express an opinion about facts that others have presented.

But the direction some of these threads are taking isn't really sitting too well with me. Remember, no allegations of wrongdoing are allowed on the BB unless they've appeared in print, or charges have been filed in court.

There's a LOT of information on Guidestar about both USET and AHSA. Please, let's keep discussion to concrete information like that.

Thanks! /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Beans
Sep. 4, 2001, 11:19 AM
So far this thread has had invaluable references and information and many people have benefited from finding out they CAN have access to information and there ARE regulations governing how non-profits handle their business. Opinions about whether people feel salaries are appropriate for the job performed are important when it's a organization that involves a sport we all are involved with. Perhaps if the information were open and discussed in years past - the matters wouldn't be so shocking and would have come with justification for the business decisions governing them. Or...the lack thereof.

Erin
Sep. 4, 2001, 11:25 AM
As I said, opinions are fine. As are discussions of documented facts.

What makes me uneasy are the "I heard..." and "Supposedly..." type references. I don't want these threads to be seen as invitations to air every rumor anyone has ever heard about officials at the USET.

I've been following all the threads carefully, and haven't seen anything that I think necessitates editing or deleting... yet. But I just wanted to remind everyone that they need to be sure anything they post is within the BB guidelines.

I'll bump up the last post on BB rules, for those who aren't familiar with them.

Lucassb
Sep. 4, 2001, 11:33 AM
Thank you for the info on intermediate sanctions. In my (relatively uneducated) opinion, the USET may have a problem with those salaries if they are challenged on that score.

By any chance do you know what triggers an IRS investigation of this nature?? (sorry if I missed this info - my legal/tax reading skills are marginal at best.)

poltroon
Sep. 4, 2001, 01:39 PM
The AHSA doesn't report anyone receiving over $100k in direct compensation in 1998 (which is listed as the 1999 return on Guidestar). The highest paid employee is Dr. Lengel, the vet running the drugs & meds program, at $93,724.

Also interesting is that the USET reports approximately $200,000 in legal expenses for that year. I'm not sure for what. The AHSA reports around $600,000 - however, as a regulatory body, I would expect that they would need a fair amount of legal advice related to rule violations and drug & med programs.

Buried in the attachments (page 14 of the PDF) of the USET return is the names of all the athletes receiving grants, and the amount. I think it's interesting that only occasionally do multiple athletes receive the same amount, and that the amounts vary rather wildly, with some getting around $25,000, some at $12,000, and a few at $35,000. The total to 27 athletes listed is $794,474. I imagine some of the difference is due to grants that were earmarked for specific athletes by the donor.

Weatherford
Sep. 4, 2001, 02:47 PM
Sorry, Susan, I do not know. Will try to find out.

Bostonian
Sep. 4, 2001, 03:00 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Erin:

What makes me uneasy are the "I heard..." and "Supposedly..." type references. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I for one would like to sincerely thank you Erin and all of you contributing to this thread. I'm expecting my husband to file for divorce any day now because I can't seem to stop logging on to TCOTH BBs!

Saying as my family has received calls from Team supporters asking if any of us know who Bostonian is - I can only imagine that - as administrator of this thread - you might be under a bit of pressure to keep this discussion within the parameters set by your rules.

With that said, I would like to add that before your post from guidestar.com, I had only heard (from reliable sources) that the Team's executives were supposedly making such large salaries.

Moreover, nobody would care if their professional performance indeed justified such INCREDIBLE compensation (annual INCREASE in membership/funding), or if they weren't forcing USA Equestrian to spend its members charitable contributions to DEFEND their status as our Country's NGB.

As so many have remarked, they brought this kind of discussion on themselves.

Weatherford
Sep. 4, 2001, 03:03 PM
http://www.afj.org/fai/intermed.html

http://www.copilevitz-canter.com/intsanct.htm

These were the first couple I found -there are plenty more for those who want to do the search.

Snowbird
Sep. 4, 2001, 08:46 PM
It seems to me that the owners are really the ones who are getting the benefits. The money from the USET reduces their cost while improving their profits for the sale of the horse.

I'd also like to see a break-down of the percentages that are used for management and supervision versus that for participation by the athletes. It seems to me that if each athlete is actually a trainer who was selected by an owner they require less supervision and coaching than if it were a team of neophytes. That would remove the need for extensive costs at the top management level.

Those figures regarding the amount for each athlete are most interesting and may give us a key to understanding the structure of the present USET.

Ruby G. Weber
Sep. 5, 2001, 07:32 AM
and I fail to see the importance of such.

Most, if not all of medal winners would not have had the opportunity to do so without the generosity of their owners.

brilyntrip
Sep. 5, 2001, 10:56 AM
USET is really trying to discover who BOSTONIAN is?? so what if they do will there be threats what???

Beans
Sep. 5, 2001, 02:06 PM
Has everyone received their proxy for the Sept. 12th meeting? I haven't and am wondering who else has. I live in NJ so have to believe I should have had it delivered by now.

dublin
Sep. 5, 2001, 02:34 PM
Ilona,
I got mine here in California yesterday, 9/4.
And you in NJ haven't gotten yours yet? Go figure.... /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

brilyntrip
Sep. 5, 2001, 03:33 PM
just curious ? the whole thing is beginning to um....be so childish that I can only shake my head in astonishment!

Bostonian
Sep. 5, 2001, 04:12 PM
Perhaps it's time to give them a call?!

Chances are it's in the same bin as your tax return - I heard, strike that, CNN reported your region's post-master was having a bit of trouble locationg those too.

Weatherford
Sep. 6, 2001, 01:37 AM
So, we have our proxies - or some of us do - to whom do we sign over our voting rights?

Ilona, are YOU going to the meeting? You want to lead this?

We are only going to be effective if we all sign off to one person who is going to be there and will speak up for us.

USA Equestrian has stated publically that they do not want to be involved in a proxy fight

That does NOT stop US as INDIVIDUALS from doing it. We need figure out how to effectively vote AGAINST some of the powers that be.

Beans
Sep. 6, 2001, 06:13 AM
Unfortunately I have a public hearing on a Township matter in Trenton that day - opposite direction but was going to sign my proxy over to one of the "ousted" board members specifically. I'm curious as to where they will be able to have a meeting for 100 people at the team headquarters. They need 100 for a quorum - or are they counting on no one coming and having their own proxies to count as the balance.

Oh - the missing corporate tax returns didn't affect NJ - thank goodness I file enough forms now.

SGray
Sep. 6, 2001, 07:45 AM
Proxy - are these going out to all contributors this time? does it say on the proxy?

Portia
Sep. 6, 2001, 10:03 AM
I haven't received a notice of annual meeting and proxy yet either.

It was weird. I didn't get one for the first annual meeting they held this year, I did get one for the second annual meeting they held this year, but as of yet have not received one for the third annual meeting they are holding this year. Regardless of when they set the record date, I contributed in excess of the $35 minimum contribution to become a member within the last year.

Maybe it will be in today's mail.

Snowbird
Sep. 6, 2001, 11:43 AM
I haven't received any mailing from the USET since the Membership one awhile back. Last time around when the USET was opposing Armand Leone I was on their mailing lists as a member.

But, then our post office is really slow so mine will probably arrive on September 13. As members I wonder if there isn't grounds for a class action suit against the USET if they attempt to ignore the will of the members who do have a vote.

Any legals out there with a point of view?

Groundline
Sep. 6, 2001, 12:21 PM
For what it's worth, I haven't gotten my proxy either. But I doubt the proxies of any of us will really make a difference.

What absolutely will make a difference is someone "following the money," as Deep Throat said in Watergate.

What is really going on here? Big donors give the USET big money. I betcha that lots and lots of people at the USET, trustees and staff, are beholden to those same big money people. That's what is wrong. The paid staff cannot make a move without approval from the big money donors, because there is too much money coming from too few people, and those people cannot be offended. At the same time, those same big money donors are telling the rest of the USET who must be a trustee, and who cannot be. That is why people who think for themselves disappear from the board, or are silent.

So the next step is to look at the list of trustees (if and when we do get a proxy), and just see who is related to which other trustee, or to the big donors, by money or other ties. That will tell us what is up.

Very simple. Always follow the money. Money is what is behind this whole thing, how much it can control and determine what happens. The question is whether there is so much money behind the USET, in so few hands, that the will of everyone else will be ignored.

Lucassb
Sep. 6, 2001, 12:54 PM
I really liked the concept of that intermediate sanctions stuff.

I do not believe (my opinion only, of course) that those salaries and perks would bear the scrutiny of the IRS.

And while I agree with Groundline (follow the money is right) I also think people can be depended upon to act in their own self interest most of the time. Figure out who is beholden to whom, who stands to lose or gain whatever... it is then easy to predict their next action.

No one who has so substantially benefitted from the existing arrangement can reasonably be expected to turn around and act in a way that would diminish their personal influence, compensation or security.

IMO, that is why the merger proposal failed, which is (also IMO) quite sad. But also totally understandable.

I will be interested to see if a ("former") trustee can be located and empowered to accomplish something substantive with the proxies.

Bostonian
Sep. 6, 2001, 04:37 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Lucassb:

I do not believe (my opinion only, of course) that those salaries and perks would bear the scrutiny of the IRS.

<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Of course they wouldn't, the Team's membership peaked in '92 with something like 30,000 members and appears to have been declining ever since (approximately 15,000 today).

Someone already brought up compensation based on performance, WELL, what would USET tell the IRS anyway? While taking away over-time from our staff, and applying for a $2 million loan, we reward our executives with outrageous salaries because, uh, because, uh....

Twilight zone really.

Snowbird
Sep. 6, 2001, 07:52 PM
I remember awhile back several large, very large charitable groups were fined because 90% of the donations went to fancy salaries and not to the charity.

Wasn't there even a scandal about the United Way?

horsenut
Sep. 7, 2001, 07:24 AM
Check out "In The Country" in this week's magazine. They quote Mr. Leone as saying he has "no compunction" about using the endowment fund to cover USET expenses. /infopop/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif

Also, the article reports that the AHSA has filed a new motion to dismiss the USET challenge, and that the USOC appears to be taking their motion seriously even though the hearing is just a couple of weeks away.

Lucassb
Sep. 7, 2001, 08:00 AM
for some of those who have contributed to that endowment to obtain the services of a good NJ corporate attorney with a specialty in trusts. I would volunteer my brother but unfortunately he has not taken the Jersey bar, only NY and CT.

Sounds to me like we need a copy of the list of donors (is that public info?) and their contact information.

Portia
Sep. 7, 2001, 08:13 AM
I looked in my records and found some old correspondence from the USET from when I made my pledge and started donating to the Endowment Fund. Unfortunately, I didn't keep the original solicitation materials, but I think this letter makes it pretty clear that the basis of the solicitation was to create a permanent, reserved endowment fund.

The letter is dated in June 1999, and is signed by Dorothy Matz and Richard Brown as co-chairs of the USET Endowment Fund Campaign. It says:

"On behalf of everyone here at the USET, I'd like to extend our thanks for your gift of $XXXX to the USET's National Endowment Campaign.

For nearly fifty years, the USET has existed to select, train and finance riders, drivers and horses of the highest possible standard to represent the United States in international equestrian competition. The National Endowment Campaign will strengthen our already stong teams, by creating $25,000,000 in additional resources -- generating more than $1.25 million annually forever -- to increase opportunities for our stongest riders and drivers to train and compete in Europe, and to provide predictable funding for the long-range training plans of each USET discipline. Without your support, the USET would be unable to build a firm foundation for the future of its athletes, both human and equine.

Again, thank you for your important role in the United States Equestrian Team's history and for providing for its future.

Sincerely, Dorothy A Matz, Richard H. Brown, Co-Chair, Nat'l Endowment Campaign."

SGray
Sep. 7, 2001, 08:14 AM
In the Country, Sept. 7, 2001 (http://www.chronofhorse.com/in_the_country.shtml)

from the article:

"And I think people should understand the maliciousness of Alan Balch?s attack on the USET. He is out to destroy the USET?I can?t say it any plainer than that. Any lesser organization would have folded long ago, but we have pursued the truth," added Leone.

--- the truth? if the truth is what is to come out - may we ask the dear man to disclose all of the uset's financials to the public?

[Edited to fix the URL/link]

[This message was edited by Portia on Sep. 07, 2001 at 03:35 PM.]

Lucassb
Sep. 7, 2001, 08:30 AM
is that Dr. Leone and the USET will claim that using the endowment money is OK because it can be construed as support for the athletes. At least, that is how I read his comment in the article referenced above.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Leone said he had no compunction about using the endowment. "Otherwise the athletes would be left out there high and dry. What�s an endowment for if not to keep the athletes and their programs supported?" <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

By their nature, endowments are difficult to word narrowly enough to explicitly define every possible (mis) use of funds. The USET apparently feels that they will be found to be justified in using the money for legal fees in order to sustain the organization itself - in addition to the programs and services provided to the athletes which are funded by the endowment.

Tricky.

SGray
Sep. 7, 2001, 08:40 AM
-- for me, that arguement would only fly if the attorneys are international equestrian athletes --

Bostonian
Sep. 7, 2001, 09:27 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Portia:
The National Endowment Campaign will strengthen our already stong teams, by creating $25,000,000 in additional resources -- generating more than $1.25 million annually forever -- to increase opportunities for our stongest riders and drivers to train and compete in Europe, and to provide predictable funding for the long-range training plans of each USET discipline.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I've talked to a few of my friends working in Development, and they believe that in the real world, if the Team wishes to use the money for something like let's say LEGAL FEES - when their mission and USA Equestrian's are supposed to be the SAME - they should first contact those folks behind the contributions to the endowment, made in good faith, and ask for permission.

Clearly USET has already interpretted the language in portia's post for them - and their solicitation does in fact read: provide funding for each "USET" discipline; not funding for the disciplines of dressage, driving, endurance, eventing, reining, and show jumping...

This decision will likely prove to make USET's NEW development director's job that much harder down the road, no doubt.

[This message was edited by Bostonian on Sep. 07, 2001 at 12:40 PM.]

Linda Allen
Sep. 7, 2001, 10:02 AM
after reading the In the Country article with the quote by Armand Leone, Jr. "...people should understand the maliciousness of Alan Balch's attack on the USET. He is out to destroy the USET."

This strikes me as the epitome of "spin." What would we think of any president who FAILED to react to a legal challenge such as the USET has filed with the USOC? The Challenge seeks to place the USET in charge of every function that the Federation has devoted itself to performing for an ever growing membership. The USET decrees that "nothing will change for the AHSA," the Federation Board disagrees. As president of the NF, who else to lead the defense of the organization?

I keep asking myself, why the continual personalization of this issue? The matter of the necessity for a single governing body for each Olympic sport began LONG before any of the current leadership took office, the consequences will extend LONG after any of the current individuals are involved. Why attempt to make this a matter of personalities?

Nothing the Federation, or Alan Balch himself, has done has in any way tried to "destroy the USET." On the contrary, beginning in 1997, every attempt has been made to bring everyone together -- to work TOGETHER to find the best way to conform to federal mandate, WHILE preserving both the history and current assets of BOTH organizations.

Please check out the recently posted presidential update on the Federation, including the attachments, then decide for yourselves who is behaving "maliciously." www.ahsa.org/EquestrianGovernance/presidentialreport.asp (http://www.ahsa.org/EquestrianGovernance/presidentialreport.asp)

I keep asking myself, what in the world is preventing USET leadership from sitting down together with NF representatives and reaching a compromise that will let our sport go forward sooner, rather than later?

Linda Allen

Lucassb
Sep. 7, 2001, 10:04 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> The USET apparently feels that they will be found to be justified in using the money for legal fees in order to sustain the organization itself -

-- for me, that arguement would only fly if the attorneys are international equestrian athletes -- <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


Hee hee, unfortunately, I guess Dr. Leone would sort of qualify!!

Have you got that mare in foal to a good jumper stallion yet?? <grin>

Weatherford
Sep. 7, 2001, 10:37 AM
Thank you, Linda.

And as Lucassb pointed out on antoher thread, thank you for putting yourself on the line for the good of our sport.

(Gee, if you get any less busy, MAYBE you can finish that book on COURSE DESIGN?) /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Snowbird
Sep. 7, 2001, 11:05 AM
Well Linda in debating an issue it is not unusual to create a deversion tactic. That deversion is almost always an attempt to make it personal rather than objective in the way the logic is presented.

Why does it work? Because most of the time it is easier to find more people who don't like each other for many reasons that it is to defend an illogical point of view.

While I think it would be almost impossible to defend the point of view of exclusion that is offered by the USET, it is easier to attack Alan Balch as a person. If you can't justify your position for a merger or a compromise then you need a scape goat to become the rallying point.

Alan Balch is a big target. How many people are there that have had an unpleasant experience with the AHSA, he is now the personification of the AHSA. Therefore let's blame Alan is a weak effort to de-rail the debate and submerge the real issues under a camouflage of one person and one enemy.

I find it very disturbing that there has been no effort whatsoever to comply with the rule of law by which we all must live. I find it reprehensible
that the USET has dissolved to the point that their desires are more important than the total welfare of the rest of us.

I agree with you that there is not one shread of evidence or logic to defend the position of the USET against Alan Balch. He has been demonized for their own benefit. They're defense "We're not so bad because Alan is worse". What a childish and immature approach to a serious problem which was created solely by the USET.

I have an idea, let's have them publish everything on their web site so all of us can have the information and block access to the computer used by Alan Balch. If that was really their only problem wouldn't it have easier to say to USA Equestrian that they are willing to comply and supply all the information just not to Alan Balch. They would instead send the information to the entire Board of the Fed.

To me the fact that they did not offer any compromise is proof that their intentions are not honorable. After all Alan Balch is temporary, in a few years they won't have him to kick around any more, WHAT THEN?

Why punish generations of athletes? Or will they into the next millennium still be blaming Alan Balch for everything that is not right? It seems to me that for 50 years it was possible to combine the interests of these two groups.

Bostonian
Sep. 7, 2001, 11:07 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Linda Allen:

Nothing the Federation, or Alan Balch himself, has done has in any way tried to "destroy the USET." On the contrary, beginning in 1997, every attempt has been made to bring everyone together
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Thank you Linda, I agree. Furthermore, I still remember the AHSA/USAE's '97 Summit meeting in DC where Balch first spelled out his vision of interdependence. It was the theme then, as it is now; It was also mocked by his opposition then as it is now.

Thank you for you post, and for your courage to keep us on track.

With that said, Leone's letter couldn't have been more disappointing, or more revealing.

"But with the official NGB status and increase in corporate properties as well as sponsorship value that will result, the USET will have new recurring predictable revenues. It is important for the athletes that the NGB be the USET. All of us have endured too much abuse and success is too close at hand to deviate even one degree."


Lead me, follow me, or get out of my way.
George S. Patton, General (1885-1945)

poltroon
Sep. 7, 2001, 12:11 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SGray:
-- for me, that arguement would only fly if the attorneys are international equestrian athletes --<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Well, I guess they'll have to recruit Armand for the show jumping team again. :P

I noticed that in the list of individual rider grants that Peter and Mark have some of the largest amounts, both in excess of $30K for the year I examined.

poltroon
Sep. 7, 2001, 12:19 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Or will they into the next millennium still be blaming Alan Balch for everything that is not right?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Hee! I can see it now... "US Rider #4 pulled two rails in the triple at the World Championships - and it's all Alan Balch's fault! /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Bostonian
Sep. 7, 2001, 03:49 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by poltroon:
"US Rider #4 pulled two rails in the triple at the World Championships - _and it's all Alan Balch's fault!_ /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

And in turn, USET will be more than happy to tell US Rider #4, that if he/she writes a bigger check - those rails will stay up in the future!

Portia
Sep. 9, 2001, 10:19 AM
Has anybody else who was expecting to receive a notice and proxy for the (third) USET 2001 annual meeting not received anything yet?

I did not join as a member this year, but I have definately donated more than enough to meet their $35 membership level (or their invalidated $100 voting membership level, for that matter) since August of last year.

I did not receive any notice of the first annual meeting, did receive the notice and proxy for the second annual meeting, and haven't yet received anything for the third annual meeting. Why am I getting the distressing feeling they may have messed up on meeting the legal requirements for this third annual meeting too? /infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

Beans
Sep. 10, 2001, 05:18 AM
I've always received a proxy and have not to date. I'm sending a fax to the USET today. I have contributed well in excess of any minimum this year.

Ruby G. Weber
Sep. 10, 2001, 08:07 AM
Assuming USAE remains NGB after the upcoming hearing, and then assuming USET becomes a defunct organization, what happens to the money the USET hold in it's coffers? Does it automatically go to USAE? Does it get returned to donors? (Not likely.)
Since USAE is obviously preparing for the future, in terms of taking over the functions of USET, is it possible AB wants to see the books for the reasons he states, and also to get a feel for how much will be coming USAE's way?

SGray
Sep. 10, 2001, 08:14 AM
I have no idea where the money would go - if it (what there is left after current problems) would have to go anywhere at all. The USET could still exist to help support training/competition of international riders - at least I would think that it could if they so choose. (Of course, without the power to pick the teams there problably would be much less money coming in.)

But - swimming around in my brain is the vague idea that along with non-profit status there is a requirement to plan for where the money would be sent if the non-profit organization broke up for any reason - anyone know something definitive?

Portia
Sep. 10, 2001, 08:29 AM
Emmet, I don't know exactly what would happen to the USET's assets if it decides to fold its tent if it loses its NGB challenge, but I imagine the assets will be distributed according to whatever the USET Board of Trustees determines is a proper disposition, in accordance with New Jersey non-profit corporations law and in accordance with the USET's commitments to its lenders. (Let's not forget the $2 million loan they took out a couple of months ago and have spent already.)

Unless there is some very, very strange twist in New Jersey law of which I am unaware, there is absolutely no way USA Eq could grab the USET assets, or that the USET would be required to turn them over to USA Eq. They are separate organizations and the assets would not go to it just because USA Eq is NGB -- that's simply not how NGB status works!

More importantly, there is nothing in the law would require the USET to stop operating if it loses the NGB challenge, or even make it one bit more difficult for it to operate!

The Ted Stevens Sports Act and the USOC Constitution expressly provide for any legitimate amateur sports organization to operate with respect to any sport, it just has to report to the NGB on certain things. If it loses its NGB challenge, the USET can continue to operate as an independent organization with the same purpose, to raise money and sponsor riders and teams, just as it has done for 50 years.

Unfortunately, having read Dr. Leone's letter about it's current financial situation, I'm not sure the USET would have any significant assets to distribute. /infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

Lucassb
Sep. 10, 2001, 08:58 AM
And I have also sent in enough money to qualify, I believe.

Interesting.

SGray
Sep. 10, 2001, 09:17 AM
L

re "Have you got that mare in foal to a good jumper stallion yet?? <grin>"

I'm giving you plenty of time to save those pennies. Let's see, if I breed in the spring and we wean at 5 months - you've got about two years before your future star is ready to leave mom. How many pennies can you gather in 24 months? ;-}

Glimmerglass
Sep. 10, 2001, 09:30 AM
>> Have not received a proxy yet and I have also sent in enough money to qualify, I believe. <<

Lucassb, I'd say that I received mine almost 9 days ago. Its a very plain jane looking envelope that to be honest easily could look like one of those pre-approved credit card envelopes.

I mailed mine back last Thursday.

Beans
Sep. 10, 2001, 09:45 AM
Had a phone message from someone at USET in response to my fax this AM - asking for my fax # to send me a proxy and I can fax it back. Obviously they did not mail one to me - but didn't explain why they hadn't. Hmmmmmmmmm!

Lucassb
Sep. 10, 2001, 12:21 PM
Since I moved recently, I suspect if mine was mailed, it went to my old address and will be ever-so-slowly forwarded to my new one. In which case, I will have it sometime around Halloween (if my other mail is any indication) /infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

Lucassb
Sep. 10, 2001, 12:30 PM
24 months... hmmm... the number of pennies will depend on a lot of factors in that amount of time! Like - will the current wonderhorse continue to need his special, custom poured red rubber pads-from-heaven under his special, wide web alum. tennies every four weeks??? Or will he relent and let me get away with normal shoes like the other jumpers in the barn...?

<grin> You know those SGray Farm babies are worth the big asking prices, though - !

SGray
Sep. 10, 2001, 12:40 PM
Lucassb

- remember, under our plan - if you get ambitious and try for the 'team' then you could be riding the fabulous SGray Farm horse free

hey - Houston is bidding for 2012 Olympics - something for you to aim for - oh, what a marketing/publicity angle "Locally Bred Horse on Jumping Team - Rider from Georgia...."

SGray
Sep. 24, 2001, 08:43 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Lucassb:
Since I moved recently, I suspect if mine was mailed, it went to my old address and will be ever-so-slowly forwarded to my new one. In which case, I will have it sometime around Halloween (if my other mail is any indication) /infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


well Lucasab - looks like you'll have time to get that address problem fixed so that you'll get the next meeting notice ;-}

SGray
Sep. 28, 2001, 07:21 AM
from COTH In the Country http://www.chronofhorse.com/in_the_country.shtml

The changes were scheduled to come up for a vote at a teleconference Board of Trustees meeting on Sept. 20, but the meeting had to be cancelled because Trustee Jimmy Wofford didn�t receive proper notification.

"Normally, people would waive [the notice]. Given the situation, he will not," said Leone, who rescheduled the teleconference for Sept. 28.

SGray
Oct. 1, 2001, 06:53 AM
anyone hear anything about this meeting?

Weatherford
Oct. 1, 2001, 07:00 AM
Just that it appears Jimmy W. read the Judge's decision reagarding the USET activities of the past year (five years, actually) and decided he didn't want to be on HER wrong side.

Which was probably smart, as it appears she is keeping a close eye on all this.

Snowbird
Oct. 1, 2001, 09:30 PM
They can't build from scratch an organization that can equal one which has been evolving for a 100 years.

There are 3 weeks left to produce a plan, and prove they can implement it. I think if all you Texans bring with you some of the beautiful teenagers who will be recipients of their decisions, it will have more influence then any smart talking lawyer can submit.

These are afterall our future and their wishes and opinions have to be measured.

SGray
Oct. 3, 2001, 07:00 AM
well Snowbird, I could go by all the barns that I know of in the area and kidnap all the youngsters that I find - but I don't think that that would work too well

you'll have to make do with us old-codgers (i.e. well over 21)

SGray
Dec. 13, 2001, 01:30 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Portia:
I attended the USOC Membership & Credentials Committee meeting in San Antonio last February over whether the AHSA and USET situation was in compliance with the USOC by-laws and the Ted Stevens Amateur Sports Act. The USET filed its challenge just the day or two before the meeting.

I recall that during that meeting Dr. Leone and the USET delegation, in connection with the USET's argument that the AHSA international programs were "all smoke and mirrors," made a big point of how _the USET athlete programs for the year were all fully funded_ and that therefore such programs were secure. If those programs were fully funded back in February, what happened to that money? What did the USET do with the funding for the athlete programs that it said it already had in place last February?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


indeed, since Dr. Leone states in his letter in the COTH that all of the financial reports given to the Board of Trustees "were 100-percent accurate" - where did all the money go?

Snowbird
Dec. 13, 2001, 02:37 PM
Maybe in a little black satchel and they forgot where they put it. Rather like the Ernon situation don't you think?

SGray
Dec. 13, 2001, 02:46 PM
good point Snowbird

are there no repercussions for the auditors that sign off on these organizations dealings?

Snowbird
Dec. 13, 2001, 02:55 PM
Like the other situation there also could be some conflict of interest on the part of the auditors depending on who else might employ them for rather large sums.

If I were a lot younger I think laws for the Non-Profit Corporations would need to be looked at and revised. It seems to me they were written back in the days when you could trust a deal with a hand shake.

SGray
Dec. 18, 2001, 07:01 AM
reading a Wall Street Journal article on Enron it is clear to me that the FASB rules need some major retooling

Beans
Dec. 18, 2001, 10:59 AM
Don't worry the auditing firms have plenty of wiggle room on these things and it really comes down to what type of Audit they did and what INFORMATION was provided to them. If people are inputting entries that don't accurately represent transactions - well?? only a complete top to bottom audit would find something like that.

Weatherford
Dec. 18, 2001, 12:17 PM
Ilona - that is, once the Judge allowed him access to the books, what Mr. Balch was looking for - a REAL audit. He worked with a forensic accountant who did just that and followed the money trail. Much of what he found came out in the USOC testimony.

Two things that are really important about this - in asking this CPA Forensic Accountant to look at the USET's books, AB specifically asked NOT to look for fraud - just mis-management (and there was PLENTY of that /infopop/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif ) He also asked this gentleman to do an equally thorough check of the USA Eq's books - which he did.

During the USOC hearings, the CPA was asked by the USA Eq's attourney to clarify whether or not he was looking for fraud, he stated quite specifically that he was asked NOT to. During the cross-examination, the USET lawyers asked him if he FOUND fraud, he responded that he was asked NOT TO LOOK FOR IT. When pushed, (and WHY they asked this, I have no clue), and asked would he found it had he looked, he responded, YES.

Interesting!

JustJump
Dec. 18, 2001, 12:21 PM
Which they are trying to prove is fit to be an NGB?


Are they brain dead?

rosinante
Dec. 18, 2001, 12:47 PM
Arthur Andersen, Enron's auditors are (or will be) involved in a shareholder lawsuit. This is big-time in the accounting world. The fact that Enron is the largest bankrupcy in the history of the US is not trivial. Accounting is not a precise science. It calls for judgement calls.

On another, but related, subject....when I was purchasing a house as a "fixer-upper" project, I found one in excellent physical shape, but with what I would call "questionable" decorating taste. Wonderful, I said to myself. Pull up the shag carpeting from the hardwood floors, the red-flocked wallpaper and mirror tiles. Made an offer for $1000 less than full price, less washer and dryer.

Realtor came back with a signed contract that said I had to take the washer/dryer/full price. Dumb, dumb, dumb me.....actually young and naive.....

When I did not accept that original contract, I voided the deal. The listing realtor bought the house as listed. When I objected to the board of realtors that this was unfair dealing, I was told what he had done was, "unethical, but not illegal" since realtors are contractually bound to get the best deal for the seller, not the buyer.

Sooooo....moral of the story, I don't use realtors any more. Bought and sold many houses and properties without 'em....go out of my way not to deal with them.....anyone want to buy 37 acres in southern Chester County, PA?????

Snowbird
Dec. 18, 2001, 04:08 PM
Now there's a question, they walk and they talk but do they have the capacity to comprehend things like responsibility, integrity, full disclosure?

I think there is a serious social gap with a group of people who are totally unaccustomed to be responsible for their actions. It is possible that as a lack of use the brain connections to that section of the brain which controls things like honor, honesty and integrity has become atrophied.

Come to think if it that might even be a viable defense in this day and age of the "twinkie" defense. I wonder what our legals think? OOPS! wait a minute isn't Armand Leone a legal, oh! well there must be someone who would know.

SGray
Dec. 19, 2001, 07:52 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Snowbird:

I think there is a serious social gap with a group of people who are totally unaccustomed to be responsible for their actions. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


-- yes, apparently, for the last several years at least, the generally accepted meaning of BUDGET has not intruded upon their "reality"

-- and where else in the world do you find so many adults that not only believe in but rely upon the largesse of Santa Claus?

Snowbird
Dec. 19, 2001, 08:50 PM
Is the atrophy in the responsibility and logic sectors of the brain permanent or could they with exercise and careful management be returned to us a responsible members of society.

I think that would require serious motivation to become responsible members willing to accepta acountability for their actions.

Has anyone seen any evidence at this point that they are even aware they have done anything wrong? Perhaps it's it's like Alice's Looking Glass inner world just all backwards for them.

I for one am willing to excuse them for being deficient in proper brain development and as handicapped people they need to be forgiven and helped. I suggest they never be in a position again where their backward thinking patterns can endanger them or anyone else.

OK! I'm just having a flight of vivid imagination don't get into a tail spin and flame me please.

SGray
Dec. 20, 2001, 07:38 AM
it sounds to me as if some could be rehabbed and a few - well, there would be the question of "rate of return" don't you think?

Snowbird
Dec. 20, 2001, 09:29 AM
Just got my copy of HDV and Sarah "implies" that the negotiators for the USAE are "closet marxists" who despise people who can afford to buy horses for a million dollars.

I don't know for sure my guess is they would all be thrilled to be able to afford to buy a horse in that bracket and don't depise anyone just because they have money.

I wonder if Sarah or the USET she quotes so diligently could possible consider that there could be other reasons for people to be despised and it had nothing to do with their money.

What a pathetic reply to our charges of "elitism" in the USET.

SGray
Dec. 20, 2001, 09:45 AM
ahh Sarah - gotta love her

Weatherford
Dec. 20, 2001, 10:20 AM
Oh, SGray, someone else has already beaten you to it... /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

SGray
Dec. 20, 2001, 10:33 AM
language usage question: does "nepotism" only apply to actually family or would a paramour count?

Snowbird
Dec. 20, 2001, 11:10 AM
I think the only gray area is if it's same sex, that would then be "friendship".

What a web we weave when first we practice to deceive!

The whole article is so astonishing that I find it hard to understand the blatant jeopardy to every principle of "reporting". Talk about a vanity press which is just an excuse for a long continuous editorial laced with advertising.

But, truthfully, you guys are too young to remember the McCarthy days when the marxist label was the kiss of death and the way to get on the classic black list.

So, USAE negotiators ... who are the marxists?(closet or otherwise)And, come on admit it, who among you who despises rich people.

What then is the goal? Isn't it the USAE that seeks sponsorship but without strings, is that what Sarah calls marxist?

Think of the good will involved in the negotiations when the USET has as their best hope that the USOC will declare a vacancy for the sport, and there be no NGB. Gee! talk about a bunch of "cry babies".

SGray
Dec. 20, 2001, 11:47 AM
can't wait to get my HoDV now

poltroon
Dec. 20, 2001, 02:20 PM
On the website, I think it's very cute that only one of the NGB articles is labeled as 'opinion.'

Snowbird
Dec. 20, 2001, 03:09 PM
It might be impossible to find an article which is not opinion. So many articles are vanity stories written by the advertisers and what isn't is just the one sided opinion of the editor so maybe they should just label what rare article is not opinion..like show results. /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Snowbird
Dec. 21, 2001, 02:17 PM
Any letters to the editor being planned?

Hickstead
Dec. 21, 2001, 04:26 PM
Generally not printed. Not responded to. Unless very thoroughly edited. /infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

Bostonian
Dec. 23, 2001, 05:39 PM
I've written and called, she is in bed with them, don't bother.

Snowbird
Dec. 23, 2001, 06:24 PM
Literally I think!

canyonoak
Dec. 23, 2001, 06:28 PM
yoo-hoo...what does everyone think of the news flash (that USET has agreed, generally speaking, to accept mediation/merge with USAE--whcih it is now calling USAE and not AHSA) ..?

So ,Santa, there is Christmas after all!

I was interested to see that Dr. Leone (well, if he can call USAE by its correct name, I guess I can refer to him as Dr..) seems to think it will take FIVE MONTHS to work out the details of the mediated agreement...

cheers,

Bostonian
Dec. 24, 2001, 09:38 AM
my guess, USET's executive contracts probably don't expire for another 5 months and nobody can afford to buy them out or force them to retire.

Portia
Dec. 24, 2001, 10:03 AM
It usually takes several months to work out the details of corporate consolidations (which is what I'm going to call this deal until we get the details. /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif )

I'm not sure what kind of approvals they may need to get from New York (USA Eq) and New Jersey (USET) authorities for reorganizing non-profit corps, but I'm sure they are required -- particularly if there is any redistribution of assets and liabilities among them. There is also what is called "due diligence" done in connection with any corporate consolidation, such as a merger or major acquisition of stock or assets, in which lawyers and accountants have to review the books and records of the other party. Part of the due diligence process is to identify all of the existing contracts to which the entity is a party and determine on what terms they can be reassigned to the acquiring company/new entity, then they have to get all those approvals from the other parties for the assignment or other disposition of the contracts. In the USET's case, these would likely include the contracts with corporate sponsors, which according to the testimony at the hearing are for four years beginning with each new Olympic quadrennium.

Even after the deal gets approved by each parties' boards, it takes time to take care of all these other details. I'd rather they take the needed time and do it correctly than rush through the process just to get it done.

canyonoak
Dec. 25, 2001, 07:10 AM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Portia:
I'm not sure what kind of approvals they may need to get from New York (USA Eq) and New Jersey (USET) authorities for reorganizing non-profit corps, but I'm sure they are required -- particularly if there is any redistribution of assets and liabilities among them. There is also what is called "due diligence" done in connection with any corporate consolidation, such as a merger or major acquisition of stock or assets, in which lawyers and accountants have to review the books and records of the other party. Part of the due diligence process is to identify all of the existing contracts to which the entity is a party and determine on what terms they can be reassigned to the acquiring company/new entity, then they have to get all those approvals from the other parties for the assignment or other disposition of the contracts. In the USET's case, these would likely include the contracts with corporate sponsors, which according to the testimony at the hearing are for four years beginning with each new Olympic quadrennium.

_____________________________________________


Yes, I can now see quite clearly why they will be lucky to get this all done in five months.

tee-hee.

Snowbird
Dec. 25, 2001, 08:18 PM
When the word gets out about the terms there will be lots of hysteria and lots of joy and lots of people who will try to convince others that they are the ones who are right.

So there is still a bumpy road ahead. We have to remember not to jump to conclusions and to wait for the whole truth aand not just a part of it.

The issues are thorny and not easily resolved but I do believe they will get done and the rights of the members will be protected. I think we can be sure that the USAEq will do it's best to protect the sport and us. The USET in it's concession has confirmed that things will have to be changed. I look forward to seeing what those changes might be.

SGray
Dec. 26, 2001, 01:03 PM
fyi the USET's year 2000 IRS Form 990 is up on guidestar now

-- Public Relations 163,909
Telemarketing 151,540
Legal Services 156,412
Mailings 54,293
Broadcasting (????) 254,185

- what have they been broadcasting?

JustaLurker
Dec. 26, 2001, 03:01 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SGray:
fyi the USET's year 2000 IRS Form 990 is up on guidestar now
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I assume you really did mean year 2000. Can you imagine what it will be for the year 2001?

Cheers, Maggi

SGray
Dec. 26, 2001, 03:10 PM
yup - 2000 - it seems to take a while for these things to get files/show up

agreed that 2001's will be even more interesting

rosinante
Dec. 26, 2001, 03:26 PM
Please educate the ignorant....what is guidestar?

poltroon
Dec. 26, 2001, 05:06 PM
http://www.guidestar.com/ is a site that allows you to search for non-profits and get info on them. For example, I like to know what their administration ratio is, how much they spend on fundraising, and how much they spend on programs before sending my money. Amongst the information they provide is pdf images of tax returns. It's a bit of a bother to look at the tax returns, but there is all sorts of information in there. In the case of USET, for example, each rider who received a grant is named with the amount he/she was awarded.

Snowbird
Dec. 26, 2001, 08:12 PM
Anybody look up West Coast Equestrian? That is Larry Langer's personal non-profit that gets all that money from Zone 10. I think last year the record showed he got $77,000 of fees from horse shows in Zone 10. /infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

SGray
Dec. 27, 2001, 06:51 AM
I could not find West Coast Equestrian - is there perhaps another name to look under?


== and no one knows what the uset has been broadcasting (for 245,000+)??

DMK
Dec. 27, 2001, 07:52 AM
sgray - I have heard - and don't know if it is true or not - that in order for lesser marque type sports to air on some cable channels, they must pay for that priviledge. That may be what the $245K was used for?


Ahhhh... to be like the Big Dance, where YOU get obscene amounts of money to be aired... /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Portia
Dec. 27, 2001, 08:27 AM
Canyonoak -- I finally read more carefully and saw your reference to Leone now calling USA Eq USA Eq instead of AHSA! LOL!

Yes, finally getting him to use the name that has been in place for 6 months is itself a victory! /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

On the LL and TS front, it will be interesting to see how they react to whatever the new arrangement is. If it is anything like the previously public plan from the mediation, the idea was to separate out the committees for the international disciplines, including jumpers, from the committees for the national disciplines, including hunters. (Which, IMHO, is how it should be. Hunters and jumpers are different and have different concerns, and they should have separate committees dedicated to addressing those different issues.) I question whether the NHJC could survive that kind of reorganization, at least as it exists now, which may well have lead to some howling on the part of those in charge of that group. (That's just speculation on my part, of course, and may be totally off base.)

The USA Eq Exec Comm has my sympathies for having to, and admiration for being able to, work something out that actually satisfied a majority of these different interests and egos!

SGray
Dec. 27, 2001, 08:54 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by DMK:
sgray - I have heard - and don't know if it is true or not - that in order for lesser marque type sports to air on some cable channels, they must pay for that priviledge. That may be what the $245K was used for?


Ahhhh... to be like the Big Dance, where YOU get obscene amounts of money to be aired... /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

thanks DMK - I had never heard anything about that so the big $s were a shock - am now wondering what events were paid for - would be interesting to see that breakdown

SGray
Dec. 27, 2001, 08:59 AM
"the idea was to separate out the committees for the international disciplines, including jumpers, from the committees for the national disciplines, including hunters. (Which, IMHO, is how it should be. Hunters and jumpers are different and have different concerns, and they should have separate committees dedicated to addressing those different issues.) "

total agreement with that

and that, in whatever form, it is time for the NHJC to get weaned off of its dependency on USA Eq - if you're gonna act like an independent organization then you need to support yourself

Portia
Dec. 27, 2001, 09:24 AM
As I understand it, the broadcast of just about anything horsey (other than maybe TB racing) on ESPN or ESPN 2 is paid for by the event and/or the event sponsors, such as Budweiser for certain GPs.

Snowbird
Dec. 27, 2001, 09:37 AM
YES! I would guess that any minor sport which has no spectator base would have to pay the fees for the broadcasting of their sports events.

Logically, if the station cannot sell advertising time on a program then someone has to pay. But, isn't that rather like the idea that "if you give a man food it is gone in one day and if you give him seeds he will always have food."

This has been the whole point of the creation of a Marketing and Development Committee. If we spend that money on the seeds of a broad based program that reaches down the ladder to the beginnings then we will have the necessary sponsors for the rest of the time.

As to the separation of hunters and jumpers, I hadn't heard about that but it's a great idea. I think that the NHJC has proven itself defunct as a members association by their refusal to even consider the needs of members who they wish to get money from to fund their own vanities.

All of the proposals we made last year to revise the By-Laws and make the Zone Committees representative of the real membership have never been addressed. They refuse to comply with their own By-Laws in giving the members information needed. And, at least in the case of Zone 2 there is no effort whatsoever to be interested in the membership attendance at so-called meetings, no financial reports, no reports from even the "so-called" meetings as to who attended, what was on the agenda and what was accomplished.

So, for my part at least the NHJC would be no loss and I certainly will not be happy with Larry Langer as the President again for another 4 years after our experience with him as President in the past.

SGray
Dec. 27, 2001, 09:40 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Portia:
As I understand it, the broadcast of just about anything horsey (other than maybe TB racing) on ESPN or ESPN 2 is paid for by the event and/or the event sponsors, such as Budweiser for certain GPs.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

so what would be your guess as to why the uset lists $245K for broadcasting?

SGray
Dec. 27, 2001, 09:43 AM
Snowbird / Portia "As to the separation of hunters and jumpers, I hadn't heard about that but it's a great idea. I think that the NHJC has proven itself defunct as a members association by their refusal to even consider the needs of members who they wish to get money from to fund their own vanities."

if the NHJC was split out of USA Eq and became its own entity (along the lines of USEA, USDF, etc) then wouldn't membership become voluntary as it is with those examples? and then wouldn't there have to be some responsiveness to the needs/wishes of its members?

Portia
Dec. 27, 2001, 09:49 AM
S, I meant to include the USET among the group that would help to pay for the broadcasts, as one of the event sponsors.

If you remember, I think there was some discussion of having to pay for television coverage during Jim Host's (Host Communications) testimony at the USOC hearing. One of his goals was to reach the point where such exposure would be paid for entirely by sponsors (commercials) and the viewership base would be large enough that the networks want to broadcast horse sports -- so that they may even reach the point some day of them paying the events for broadcast rights.

On separating the hunters and jumpers, that's just guesswork on my part based on the proposed plan previously made public. They may well have changed it 180 degrees since then! However, it was the USET who kept insisting that the FEI disciplines have to be handled differently than the national disciplines, and -- whether the USET acknowleged it or not while they were trying to court the favor of the NHJC leadership -- jumpers fall into one category and hunters into the other.

[This message was edited by Portia on Dec. 27, 2001 at 12:58 PM.]

poltroon
Dec. 27, 2001, 09:58 AM
Just making things up here, with no actual knowledge...

It may be that some of that $245,000 broadcasting expense was offset by revenue associated with the broadcast - for example it may be that USET paid for the broadcast and sponsor(s) paid a large chunk of that back to USET in exchange for their airtime on/around the program. However, that would not be obvious from a tax return - the gross amounts are reported and the links/dependencies are not shown.

Snowbird
Dec. 27, 2001, 10:00 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>I think that the NHJC has proven itself defunct as a members association by their refusal to even consider the needs of members who they wish to get money from to fund their own vanities."<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

And, even worse the idea that Larry Langer could even be considered for President of NHJC is obscene after what he pulled in Zone 10. We would not only have to be mandatory members but be taxed for a bunch of associations with which we don't even participate. So, how would it be fair if we all had to give up doing hunters just to avoid them?

SGray
Dec. 27, 2001, 10:02 AM
"The United States Equestrian Team is the non-profit organization, which selects, trains, equips, finances and promotes equestrians of the highest possible standard to represent our country in major international competition, including the Olympics Games and the World Championships. In doing so, the USET seeks out and nurtures the development of talented athletes -riders, drivers and horses - and provides the support and guidance they need to help them attain their fullest potential."

certainly falls under the scope of "promotes equestrians" - I just had no idea that the uset had been doing that

SGray
Dec. 27, 2001, 10:14 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by poltroon:
However, that would not be obvious from a tax return - the gross amounts are reported and the links/dependencies are not shown.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

true Poltroon - I was just surprised to see that line item and curious to see if anyone knew about it

poltroon
Dec. 27, 2001, 11:17 AM
I'm curious too. Though now that I think of it, there's a USET commercial that I've seen during Rolex at least. So, the broadcasting line item could (a) have paid at one point for the creation of this commercial and (b) probably reflects money paid to support the broadcast of any event that runs this commercial.

I would hasten to add that I do think this is a good use of USET funds, assuming we're correct. /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

mbp
Dec. 27, 2001, 12:04 PM
what mag is HDV??

Snowbird
Dec. 27, 2001, 12:32 PM
The Horse of Delaware Valley. They do have a web site of sorts too.

Bostonian
Dec. 27, 2001, 02:05 PM
I've learned that the USET's commercial was DONATED by one of the trustees in 1997 or 1998 and the broadcasting expense is, as suggested, related to buying air-time and production.

They should have been able to get a great price for the air-time with all the contacts they have in the industry (USOC/NBC, Dolan and Fox Sports Net - oh that's right nevermind - Debbie was politically driven off a team, after being selected to compete in the 80's).

Anyways, most of that is the cost of paying a televison crew to produce the festival of champions, two show jumping grand prix classes(Indio and Wellington), and the three day event in KY. Of course, this expense is supposed to be off-set by the sale of the commercial spots, but instead it appears the time is being given away to Abtronics and other info commercials. That or the same Bayer and Rolex commercial air two or three times which means Standish is either including the spots as part of the sponsorship agreement, or his marketing people aren't able or trying to sell the commercial time...

Ratings aside, with this type of exposure any monkey should be able to sell corporate sponsorship for USET.

That said, host communications, or any professional rewarded with commission for that matter, will be able to help the Team leverage their corporate contacts to maximize the revenue stream from commercials; negotiate lower air-time costs; and produce higher quality shows, for less. The production jobs for the Bayer/USET events were probably given to a friend of a friend and the Budweiser events are no doubt produced by Bud Sports TV (and their announcer, Lisa Busch Burke Harkin (sp?)).

Ratings and exposure aside, with the appealing demographics of equestrian, even shows with low ratings should attract buyers for all of these commercial spots. Without this revenue, and all other things considered, this line item for 2000 seems right on the money (and probably quite reasonable to USET's management).

Still, I would enjoy seeing the line item for "commercial revenue."

Portia
Dec. 27, 2001, 04:43 PM
Bostonian, that was Jim Host's point precisely, testifying on behalf of USA Eq regarding the marketing plan he has produced for it. He said that U.S. horse sports have demographics that commercial corporations should kill for -- but they have never been properly marketed to those advertisers.