Gold Coast Amateur Radio Association
Board Meeting

1)  Call to Order

Melanie Fernandez (KJ4VCT)called to order the board meeting of the Gold Coast Amateur Radio Association, Inc at 13:16 EDT (17:16UTC) on April 25, 2021 on ZOOM.  A quorum was present with 7 members and 1 non-member.

2)  Old Business

a)    Re-stated Articles of Corporation

Will be done Wednesday and filed.  Will write check and reimbursement to save time.

b)   Bylaws on Website

Must post New By-laws and advertise for membership to read so can vote on at a general meeting.

3)  Membership Dues Charlie Artner (KN4VDW)

a)    When are Dues due?

Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) suggested to modify Section 3.3 Annual Dues to be more specific on when the annual dues are due.  Following text was proposed to replace current Section 3.3:

The annual dues to the GCARA paid to the Treasurer or his/her designee by members shall be in such amounts as determined by resolution of the Board of Directors and approved by a majority vote of the general membership.  Dues shall be paid for the year on admission to membership and annually thereafter no later than 60 days after the beginning of the fiscal year.  Membership benefits for members who have not paid their annual dues will continue until 60 days after the beginning of the fiscal year.  Failing to pay membership dues within the first 60 days will result in all membership benefits being removed, and the membership status will be considered lapsed.  Benefits will resume the moment the annual dues have been brought up to date.

Motion to accept this change was made by Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) and second by Melanie Fernandez (KJ4VCT).  The motion carried (6:1).

b)   Definition of Fiscal Year

The definition of the Fiscal year will be added as Article III and all subsequent articles and subsection will be renumbered, as necessary.  Article III shall read as follows:

The Fiscal Year shall be from December 1 through November 30 of the following year.  The Board of Directors shall be allowed to amend the beginning of the Fiscal year from time to time as seen fit.

Motion was made by Jeff Stahl (K4BH) and second by Charlie Artner (KN4VDW).  The motion carried (7:0).

c)    Prorated membership fees

Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) mentioned that the practice of prorated 2nd year is nowhere defined in the bylaws.  He suggested to replace this practice and the changed version to the bylaws.  The dues on any new member who joins in the last quarter of the fiscal year shall be applied to the following fiscal year and member shall be admitted for free for the rest of the current fiscal year.

Motion by Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) second by Jeff Stahl (K4BH). Motion carried (7:0).

d)   Lifetime Membership

The bylaws fail to describe the requirements for a Lifetime Membership and how to become a Lifetime Member.  Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) suggested to add a section in Article III – Members to add Lifetime Membership to the bylaws.  Motion was made by Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) and was second by Jeff Stahl (K4BH).

Following text was proposed to be added as Section 3.2 Lifetime Membership:

Lifetime membership shall be awarded after 25 consecutive years of membership.  Alternatively, after at least one year of members ship a member may apply for lifetime membership by payment of dues in the amount of current dues times the difference between 25 and the number of years of consecutive membership already achieved.

The Board of Directors may at its discretion grant Lifetime membership to any member for outstanding service to the club.

The motion carried (7:0)

4)  Passing information of new members

Joe McGee (NX4T)—as the Chairmen of the Membership Committee—will take responsibility to contact new members after the have been accepted.  To make sure that Joe McGee (NX4T) has the most up-to-date information on new members, Erik Olmer (W4EJO) will forward any information on new members at least once a week to Joe McGee (NX4T), Melanie Fernandez (KJ4VCT), and Charlie Artner (KN4VDW).

Joe McGee (NX4T) also asked if anybody is checking the call sign validity of new members and this task has not been assigned.  Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) mentioned that he is checking call sign on random basis on but does not necessarily check every call sign.  Joe McGee (NX4T) asked whether is a reliable source to check validity of call signs and Jeff Stahl (K4BH) confirmed that it is.

Melanie Fernandez (KJ4VCT) mentioned that Herbert L. Schulman has been reported as Silent Key. Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) confirmed that his status on the roster has already been changed accordingly.

5)  John Knox Hurricane Planning

Everything is going to be the same.  Joe McGee (NX4T) had a quick contact with Kirsten and no physical meeting is necessary.  The only decision will be who is going to be part of the team during a disaster.

6)  Social Hamming Around Erik Olmer (W4EJO)

On hold until the remote station is working again

7)  Remote HF Station

The remote station is currently offline due to technical difficulties.  Ricky Eaton (KD4HGR) spent 4 hours on trying to find the issue but was unable to resolve the problems.  Ricky Eaton (KD4HGR) and Joe McGee (NX4T) are still working on it.  The main problem is that the program freezes up and the radio stays keyed-up.  The only way to unkey the radio is to turn it off.

Ricky Eaton (KD4HGR) already contacted the developer of the software and reported the issue.  It seems the problem is in the server software or their system.

Joe McGee (NX4T) asked users of the remote station what we can do to improve it and the overwhelming answer was more power.

  • 500W Amplifier
  • Switching PowerSupply
  • Higher Power Tuner
  • Higher Power Balun

Total for all the equipment is $2,193.29

8)  Social opportunities for Ham Get Togethers IN PERSON

Several locations have been suggested but the board could not come to a decision.  Erik Olmer (W4EJO), Ricky Eaton (KD4HGR), will check out a few places regarding rules and how many people can meet.

9)  Any Other Business

a)    Ongoing Web improvement

Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) added a new plugin to the website which will allow to create popup windows with important information.  Also, the Repeaters have been added to the main menu at the top of the page to give them a more prominent existence and make them easier to be found.  Additional tabs have been created for Broward and Palm Beach county repeaters.  Erik Olmer (W4EJO) requested to add Miami-Dade repeaters as well.  Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) will work on adding an additional tab with Miami-Dade repeaters.

b)   Hope Smith suggested for Lifetime Membership.

Erik Olmer (W4EJO) has asked if the board could consider awarding Hope Smith Lifetime Membership.  Charlie Artner (KN4VDW) and Jeff Stahl (K4BH) have talked about this in the past and Ricky Eaton (KD4HGR) said that he would support it.

Motion has been made by Joe McGee (NX4T) and been second by Charlie Artner (KN4VDW).  Motion carried (7:0).

10)      Adjournment

Melanie Fernandez (KJ4VCT)adjourned the meeting at 15:20 EDT (19:20 UTC).

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