Board Newsletter May 2019

Dear Members,
Welcome to the May edition of our monthly Board Report to Members.

MAY 2019

Tuesday evening’s meeting was a full agenda, covering a number of very important issues facing the Club. Most importantly;


Members will recall that the recent Special General Meeting raised serious concerns around the lack of effective communication from the Board of Management to our members.
The Board accepts the clear censure and especially for the requirement for communication and apologises for the limited information provided in relation to the General Manager.
The negotiations in regard to the ending of the General Manager’s employment contract are progressing. The Clubs’ lawyers and the Clubs’ insurer has instructed the Board to treat this matter with the strictest confidentiality.

The new Risk and Governance Committee met for the first time this week after an overwhelming response to the expression of interest from highly qualified members. This meeting was in the form of a workshop chaired by Lyn Powell and facilitated by Dr Fran Pesich as part of the preparation for the establishment of a FSC Risk & Governance Committee.

  • Delivering the concept of why the club needs a Risk and Governance Committee;
  • Establishing how the group will work including the various sub-groups and how it will function as a whole;
  • Establishing the Terms of Reference and its Roles & Responsibilities;
  • Next steps to take and the pathway over the next couple of months to establishing a functioning Risk and Governance Committee.

The Board recognises the position of General Manager is critical to the operation of such a significant organisation. While accepted that changing General Managers unexpectedly, or in an unplanned way is to be absolutely avoided, it is necessary from time-to-time for the Club to navigate a period where executive leadership is required. A procedure for the installation of an Acting General Manager requires further consideration.The Board endorsed the newly formed Risk and Governance Committee to look at the current situation and make recommendations to the Board as to whether a change to the Rules is required.


In May of each year, our auditors BDO audit our Financial Results for the period ending 31 March 2019.  The Board reviewed and discussed the figures in detail and will sign off once the full Audit Report is received this week.
The Board supported the Finance Committee’s recommendation to reappoint BDO for three years. There are efficiency advantages in retaining consistency in the audit.
2019 was of course, an unusual year, with the unexpected annual leave loading issue presented before the Board. The payments have now been finalised and current and former staff members are receiving their payments. The final liability will be accrued as an extraordinary expense for the year.
The potential significant rent increase was another unexpected financial surprise recently. The matter is being addressed by an expert group of volunteer members coordinated by Lyn Powell who are in the discovery phase of information to assist in the negotiations with our landlord.
The month saw further disappointing losses across F&B, thankfully compensated by good results in membership. There was an undesirable saving in repairs and maintenance. Net Assets increased over the year.
The Treasurer presented a draft policy on Significant Capital and Major Expenditure. “Significant” refers to exceeding the General Manager’s Capital Expenditure limit”, currently $10,000 per project, with an aggregate limit of $50,000 per Club financial year.
The approval and funding process involves a number of parties so a clear process is required to avoid duplication of effort, conflicts and missed opportunities and to ensure a logical approach to the sequence of the approval process.  The policy requires further discussion and will be tabled for review at the next Risk & Governance Committee meeting.
Following on from the Motion presented at the Special General meeting regarding unfinancial members, Board Member Rod Mulcahy presented some draft rules. There is currently no definition of “unfinancial” as it is used in 19(c) of the Constitution.
The rules require further work to include negotiated payment schemes and the final draft will be tabled before the Risk & Governance Committee. The Board resolved to ensure a functional definition of an unfinancial member that can be applied.

Our various Flag Officer then presented their papers and, items of particular interest:-

  • Facebook etiquette, in terms of appropriate material being published on Section Social media sites;
  • A Club VSR that was re-furbished has returned to the Dinghy Clubhouse after 13 weeks with a few stability issues. As this was a major refurbishment of the craft it will be important for the scope of work to be presented and understood by the users;
  • The Offshore Committee are in the process of personally recruiting participants for Winter/Valmadre series;
  • A scaled down Harbour Clean-up was held on 19 May as a trial to see whether in-water conditions were better than the traditional August event.  It was decided that two smaller events may be a better option than one large one due to the dependency on divers available, which has been a limiting factor. The after-action review will be released once finalised;
  • The Marine Environment Committee is holding a small-scale celebration of World Oceans Day on 8th June, launching a limited number of keep cups for sale over the weekend and the topic night on 13th June.  All members are encouraged to to purchase a keep cup to aid this worthy cause.

Whilst the Membership Committee has not met formally, it but has been very busy behind the scenes following the very successful recruitment of new members on Open Day.

  • The new members’ welcome format was tested but successfully adapted to the Welcome on 21st May, with ~36 new senior members being congratulated on joining.
  • The subsequent Introduction on 13th June is anticipated to have up to 140 new members (Senior and General) plus partners / sponsors attend. Section Captains are reminded that they are expected to be there and to briefly present their Section.

The Maintenance Committee has been extremely busy due to a number of important projects underway:

  • Works area roof refurbishment will start soon, however Dorian Engineering has been engaged to provide analysis as to whether reducing the loading on the foundations will have any ill effects.  They are also reviewing the condition of some structural beams.
  • Pile Cap (Headstock) Pilot project – just under $89K was spent and we now have a wealth of information that will enable the assessment of the condition of the remaining headstocks.
  • Works Area Upgrade – underground civil works scoping has been completed but due to other urgent tasks the project has not received further attention
  • Glass balustrades have been replaced, minor work required to patch and paint fascia.
  • Kalbarri Floating Jetty Business Model – Information is being collected to prepare a business model for a floating jetty parallel to the Kalbarri Groyne which would be able to accommodate a range of vessels and potentially the Clipper Training Boats the sailing office are assisting.
  • Dept. Fire & Emergency Services Report – we have received unfortunate advice that following the upgrade to the clubhouse, there was no tank and pump fire system put in place as per the building submission to the COF and DFES.  The sea water draught system was never submitted to DFES for approval and it was not approved.  The Maintenance Manager and A/GM are working with COF and DFES to rectify the problems.  We will need to build a tank storage system of at least 500 m3 with pump support for a hazardous site.  Once we have quotes for the works involved the board will be notified.  We should be able to have the design work undertaken by the original architects covered by their professional indemnity insurance.
  • Kitchen fridge upgrade is underway with new units ordered.


Again, Tuesday night’s meeting was a very full agenda.  The Board received advice from Treasurer Laurie Flynne and RCS Connor Moran that they would not be re-nominating for office next year. The Board thanked both Laurie and Connor for their efforts throughout the year. The Cruising Section will be hosting a Wine Expo on Saturday 15th June.  Members may have seen the flyer on the noticeboard and website, offering a fantastic ticket price for tastings from some very reputable vineyards and a discounted buffet dinner special with a twist! If you haven’t booked your tickets, please book now for what will be a great night!


Finally, after the fantastic ticket sales and positive feedback on our Mother’s Day event, it’s Dad’s turn! A similar event will be scheduled to treat all the fathers out there so watch this space for further information!

See you at the Club!

Commodore Graeme Allen

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