A VISION FOR THE FUTURE - WHILE HONORING THE PAST
Questions to ask before you vote
November 24, 2015
Your vote on December 2nd is VERY IMPORTANT. I ask all of you to ask yourself the following questions BEFORE YOU VOTE ON December 2nd for Executive Officers and Board of Control Members:
Audited financial statements instill confidence - Receiving only an unaudited financial summary raises questions about the finances and accounting practices at the League!
We as members should know details about what our elected officers are doing to protect our financial interests. Financial Statements prepared by League Accountants and Audited by an Outside Independent Auditor would be respected by everyone; especially respected by Big Donors that we should be seeking funds from - where are these Donors?
If we re-elect the people who wrote the Proposed Changes to our By-Laws and Constitution, proposing to give themselves more power/control without coming to the membership to make decisions about financial matters, we are fools.
Remember bullying is a tactic usually used because of a lack of knowledge and experience; let's not make that a winning strategy! I simply want Members to become more informed and receive facts before voting.
It was a very eye-opening article May 19, 2014, that James Lance McElhinney an Instructor (attached) wrote in his blog about being enlisted by our Executive Director to help get the League re-certified. It wasn't the Certificate program that disturbed me it was the secret hiring of personnel without disclosing it to the Membership for approval and the idea that the incumbent Leadership would consider making us (the League) an outsourced college credit institution! Well I can tell you that perked my interest in what may really be going on behind the scenes here at the League. Oh and directly after I asked others' in class if they read it - the article was pulled down. Thankfully, I have a copy attached for all of you to read.
I have other questions related to this issue:
Under expenses please note that Salaries have risen to almost $3 Million (including taxes and benefits in May 2014) not including Instructors and models? This increase doesn't include any raises since in June 2014. It rose 200,000 from 2013/14 fiscal to 2014/15 fiscal. This rise is without the Proposed Changes to the by-laws and Constitution. How much will it have risen by May 2016?
Point of information: I had no trouble applying my League art classes toward college credit for Art Classes in CUNY Schools even without a Certificate from the League. Proof of taking the studio classes and descriptions of the classes was all that was necessary. I believe all schools operate this way.
I only ask you all to think deeply about the changes that are being proposed and how your membership dues and possible bequests may be used under such current leadership.
Please do not attack people who want to open the windows and let in fresh air -- cherish them. They are self funded and working hard in your best interests providing you with the information you are/should be, entitled to before you vote.
The incumbents haven't done that yet, nor have the incumbents given you a side by side comparison of their changes to evaluate, and we have a little over one week before the vote, what does that tell you?
Voting in ignorance is not a wise decision.
New Leadership can give the League a boost in the right direction, prove themselves as worthy of your sustained support and give us a new start within one year as your CURRENT By-Laws wisely recommend. You can vote-in incumbents again and again if you believe they have served you well- I for one no longer believe they have served us well.
We as a membership don't need these proposed changes along with their expensive consulting costs. We need Artists and Advocates for Membership in leadership positions. If there are changes that would benefit Members, let's cull them from the rest and introduce them slowly.
And a larger BOC with longer terms. Is it really what the League Membership wants? Do you want to have to obtain 10% of membership to call a special meeting when now you only need 15 members to do the same thing? Why would the BOC want to change this?
Do the incumbents anticipate a lot of questions and pushback about their future decisions and want to make it harder to make themselves accountable to Membership through special meetings?
Reducing quorums and increasing number of membership required to call a meeting suggests they do not want membership participation!
As far as I know, there haven't been a lot of special Meetings in the past except over the Cantilever and that was an important issue.
Please think about these questions and care enough about our precious "League" to actually come in person to cast your vote for a change in Leadership!
Art Schools of our kind are diminishing, coming to vote will make a huge impact on the results and our future.
With thanks and gratitude,