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I would like to respond to your comments, individually, below.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of John Hawkins
Sent: Tuesday, December 28, 2004 7:01 PM
Subject: Re: [802SEC] +++EC Email Ballot+++ENDS 13 JAN+++motion to hold pl enary sessions outside NA
I oppose this motion with the following comments:
1) I should say I support the notion, but not the motion :-) I agree we should strive to become a truly international standards body.
Bob>> Without support for the motion, we are "international" only in our own minds.
2) As worded, the motion denies our meeting planners the flexibility they reasonably need. Applying a forcing function is inefficient and arbitrary. Why can't we skip a year for logistical and cost reasons if common sense would indicate that is thing to do? Would we hold a meeting somewhere no-one in their right mind would, just to adhere to this rule? Let's consider venues and costs as they come up and use our common sense to approve or not. So who's common sense apply? See point #3.
Bob>> Since this is a motion made (and, I hope, passed) by the EC, the EC has the ability to grant all such flexibility as you suggest, simply by passing another motion.
3) I believe such a motion is unnecessary. This committee approves each and every session location. When international venue proposals come up (including costs, logistical considerations, etc...) all we have to do is vote accordingly. (If the motion were to instruct the meeting planners to come up with such proposals, I would be inclined to support. But it's not)
Bob>> Such a motion is definitely necessary. The EC has been asking for international venues (as has been pointed out in a subsequent post on this thread) and gotten not a single location suggestion, yet.
4) I believe such a motion is un-enforceable. What if we don't pull this off in some future year? Can someone declare our proceedings "out of order" and our decisions invalid if we don't adhere to the letter of this rule? Can the EC be somehow impeached? Who gets sued?
Bob>> It is quite possible that a member may choose to impeach one, or all, of us for not carrying out the approved decision of the EC.
5) I believe the earlier points made about expense and logistical challenges remain valid and that many of our members do care about them. Various hand-waiving arguments don't make those go away. When faced with a proposal for venue X and attendance fee Y, we should be accountable and not hide behind a motion ("we had to because back in 2005 we had a motion...." )
Bob>> I agree that cost matters. But, attendance fee is a small part of the overall cost of a meeting to each attendee. The hotel fee, even in the US, is usually twice the meeting fee. The air fare from overseas to the US is usually equal to greater than the meeting fee. The additional time lost to traveling between continents costs overseas members 1-3 days of lost time (plus lost time zones) that North American attendee, easily costing more than twice the meeting fee. So, I agree with you, many of our members do care about the expense of attending these meetings. Unfortunately, we are placing the greater costs of attending our meetings only on those members based outside of North America. With this motion, we ask them to bear only 2/3 of the additional cost.
Pat's idea of putting out a call for hosts is a good one if nothing else to gauge the true level of interest in this course of action.
Bob>> The call for hosts (or co-hosts as discussed elsewhere) is a good idea, but only for the logistics of the meeting. Whether a company is willing to perform this service, where we ask no North American company to serve, is not an indication of the desirability of our membership to hold meetings outside of North America. It is a measure only of whether there are companies that have the resources and are willing to dedicate those resources to the task of cohosting a meeting.
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