Outcome of membership scheme

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
Roger de Coverly
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Sep 21, 2012 12:52 pm

Christopher Kreuzer wrote: But for proper context, how many organisations are eligible to sign framework agreements
You can probably work it out from the voting register, 37 counties and 39 leagues. This would ignore local overlaps. Presumably the 7 constituent units are also eligible.

I'm not sure why Thames Valley and Surrey have signed up. Surely all this does is create a headache for their neighbours?

John Philpott

Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by John Philpott » Fri Sep 21, 2012 1:13 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote, in response to Christopher Kreuzer's question as to how many organisations are eligible to sign framework agreements
You can probably work it out from the voting register, 37 counties and 39 leagues. This would ignore local overlaps. Presumably the 7 constituent units are also eligible.
The 7 constituent units are, in conjunction with the counties and the leagues, the only organisations currently eligible to sign framework agreements. The number is currently a moving target (15 today, whereas the CEO's report to Council had referred to 13) and I am aware that an agreement has recently been signed by Essex and submitted to the Office. However, there is a proposal on the AGM to lift this restriction, and enable any member organisation to enter into a framework agreement: I understand that e2e4 is interested in doing so.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Sep 21, 2012 1:26 pm

John Philpott wrote: However, there is a proposal on the AGM to lift this restriction, and enable any member organisation to enter into a framework agreement: I understand that e2e4 is interested in doing so.
The more the competing and overlapping organisations offering membership, the bigger the administrative nightmare when you reach renewal time in September 2013. So if you have a player with an Essex club who joined through e2e4, where does the office send the renewal reminder? Direct, to the Essex organiser or to e2e4?

I suppose with "ECF Direct" undercutting the lot of them at £ 1 cheaper, there's little scope for cut price offers.

Alex Holowczak
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Alex Holowczak » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:09 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:So if you have a player with an Essex club who joined through e2e4, where does the office send the renewal reminder? Direct, to the Essex organiser or to e2e4?
Does it matter?

The MO will not suddenly forget that it wants to sign people up to become members on 1st September for the new season.

John Philpott

Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by John Philpott » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:18 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote
The more the competing and overlapping organisations offering membership, the bigger the administrative nightmare when you reach renewal time in September 2013. So if you have a player with an Essex club who joined through e2e4, where does the office send the renewal reminder? Direct, to the Essex organiser or to e2e4?
If an individual has joined directly, the renewal invitation will be sent to that individual. My understanding is that where a Framework Agreement is in place, the ECF will send the organisation concerned a spreadsheet listing those who joined through that organisation for 2012/13, which the organisation will be able to edit and use as the basis for its 2013/14 submission rather than creating a new spreadsheet from scratch.

Roger de Coverly wrote
I suppose with "ECF Direct" undercutting the lot of them at £ 1 cheaper, there's little scope for cut price offers.
I don't think it is a case of undercutting. The £1 discount for joining directly online is precisely equivalent to the £1 rebate for payments made under a Framework Agreement by 31 October.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:32 pm

John Philpott wrote:I don't think it is a case of undercutting. The £1 discount for joining directly online is precisely equivalent to the £1 rebate for payments made under a Framework Agreement by 31 October.
It's up to individual counties, but isn't the scheme supposed to work on the basis that players pay the FO £ 13 and the FO pays the ECF £ 12, thereby retaining £ 1 for itself. If you offer the same price as the ECF, you are undercutting organisations who don't. On the old atticus forum, they had a really long discussion about whether it was better to let the NCCU NMS keep the £ 1 or set up their own Merseyside scheme so as to get it for themselves.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:43 pm

John Philpott wrote:If an individual has joined directly, the renewal invitation will be sent to that individual. My understanding is that where a Framework Agreement is in place, the ECF will send the organisation concerned a spreadsheet listing those who joined through that organisation for 2012/13
Which is my point really. The framework administrator will get an incomplete list of players "connected" with clubs in the county, as will the club treasurers and secretaries. I can see the point that someone joining the ECF as Gold member might wish to do so as a "one stop shop" when entering an e2e4 Congress. The point of them continuing to renew through e2e4 is less obvious, particularly if they don't have an intention of entering any more e2e4 Congresses.

If you look at it from a club secretary or treasurer viewpoint, it's relatively easy to monitor the daily ECF list as to whether your players have renewed or not and to nag them to do so, or otherwise decline to select them for teams. If their membership status is potentially scattered over one of several FOs, you really don't have a clue as to their status. The same applies to a League Controller, if they were being expected to monitor compliance with a closed shop, or not more than x games rule.

Angus French
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Angus French » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:49 pm

Christopher Kreuzer wrote:The bit from Roger about "South" seems not strictly accurate, as Surrey County Chess Association and Thames Valley Chess League are both "South".
Surrey are delegating responsibility to their affiliated clubs with the clubs not being compelled to participate.

John Philpott

Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by John Philpott » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:52 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote
It's up to individual counties, but isn't the scheme supposed to work on the basis that players pay the FO £ 13 and the FO pays the ECF £ 12, thereby retaining £ 1 for itself. If you offer the same price as the ECF, you are undercutting organisations who don't. On the old atticus forum, they had a really long discussion about whether it was better to let the NCCU NMS keep the £ 1 or set up their own Merseyside scheme so as to get it for themselves.
It is indeed up to individual counties, etc. The Essex scheme will operate on the basis that subscriptions will be collected through the clubs (rather than from individual players) and the club will be entitled to deduct £1 from what is paid over provided this reaches the Essex Chess Association Treasurer by 21 October (i.e. 10 days before the ECF deadline).

The potential retention of £1 per head by the organisation always struck me as an unnecessary complication. The Essex Chess Association requires a certain amount each year to fund its own activities, which going forward it will do by charging an individual subscription that has been set for 2012/13 at £5 for adults and £2.50 for juniors. It could have retained the £1 per head and charged lower subscription rates, but to do so not only seems pointless (as the same absolute amount needs to be raised regardless of the mechanism adopted) but as introducing an additional uncertainty, because particularly the first time around it is not at all clear how many Essex players will have joined directly by the time that the payment under the Framework Agreement is made.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Sep 21, 2012 3:01 pm

Angus French wrote: Surrey are delegating responsibility to their affiliated clubs with the clubs not being compelled to participate.
If club members manage to twist the arm of the club secretary or treasurer to do memberships for them, would it not be as simple for the secretary or treasurer to go direct to the ECF website, rather than introduce an additional level of complexity by sending spreadsheets to someone else in the Surrey establishment? The only real downside is that you probably have to use a personal account to pay the ECF. If you sort the ECF membership list by membership number, it's obvious from the runs of numbers from the same club, that some secretaries or treasurers have already done this.

Is the Thames Valley scheme optional as well?

There's a fairly obvious correlation between organisations signing FOs and having a prominent ECF figure somewhere in their local setup.

Alan Walton
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Alan Walton » Fri Sep 21, 2012 3:08 pm

At 3Cs we kept it very simple, if you want to play for 3Cs in the Manchester League you will have to become a bronze member, and we have advised that individuals take some responsibility and join directly via the ECF

People here seem to have a great ability for over complicating matters, why create problems, any sensible person would just apply through ECF directly

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Sep 21, 2012 3:08 pm

John Philpott wrote: The Essex Chess Association requires a certain amount each year to fund its own activities, which going forward it will do by charging an individual subscription that has been set for 2012/13 at £5 for adults and £2.50 for juniors.
As does every league or county but they haven't all felt the need to charge per head.

There seemed no point in changing the existing method of charging clubs an entry fee for team competitions, charging individuals an entry fee to county championships and charging a fee per player for each county match. All were adjusted downwards to reflect the savings in Game Fee.

John Philpott

Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by John Philpott » Fri Sep 21, 2012 3:56 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote
Which is my point really. The framework administrator will get an incomplete list of players "connected" with clubs in the county, as will the club treasurers and secretaries. I can see the point that someone joining the ECF as Gold member might wish to do so as a "one stop shop" when entering an e2e4 Congress. The point of them continuing to renew through e2e4 is less obvious, particularly if they don't have an intention of entering any more e2e4 Congresses.

If you look at it from a club secretary or treasurer viewpoint, it's relatively easy to monitor the daily ECF list as to whether your players have renewed or not and to nag them to do so, or otherwise decline to select them for teams. If their membership status is potentially scattered over one of several FOs, you really don't have a clue as to their status. The same applies to a League Controller, if they were being expected to monitor compliance with a closed shop, or not more than x games rule.
Every organisation does, of course, have its own individual peculiarities, but based upon what is happening within Essex, I do not see there as being huge problems.

Prior to 2012/13 there have been two conditions for a player to participate in the Essex League.

(a) The player must be registered with the League Secretary. Clubs submit registration lists prior to the start of the season, and can add names as the season progresses.

(b) The player must be an individual member of the Essex Chess Association. The Treasurer sends an invoice to each club based on the registration lists. The clubs have the opportunity to edit this list by removing players not on the barred list who are now not expected to play, and then make payment for the adjusted invoice total. At the end of the season a supplementary invoice will be issued for any additional players who have turned out for the club.

For 2012/13 conditions (a) and (b) are in effect unchanged. There is an extra condition:

(c) The player must be a member of the English Chess Federation unless they play in three or fewer matches.

This will be dealt with in a precisely analogous way to (b). Registered players not currently shown on the membership list downloadable from the ECF website as ECF members will be invoiced for but the clubs will have the opportunity to remove names if, for example, a player is expected to fall within the 3 game concession and does not wish to become an ECF member. There will also be the opportunity to upgrade membership category (the default assumption will be bronze, but all levels of membership will be available). Compliance with the 3 game rule will be monitored, and supplementary invoices issued as required.

My view is that this is not exactly rocket science: others might think it is cumbersome. Time alone will show who is right.

John Philpott

Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by John Philpott » Fri Sep 21, 2012 4:00 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote
As does every league or county but they haven't all felt the need to charge per head.
As I recognised in my last post, every organisation has its own approach, and will adopt whatever it sees as appropriate. Essex continue to charge a club affiliation fee and to collect a Board fee from each player for home county matches: the latter was always regarded as contributing to accommodation and refreshments rather than Game Fee. The bulk of funding used to be generated by an individual subscription plus a loading on the ECF Game Fee: the Game Fee element has now been dropped, so the individual membership rates are inevitably higher.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Outcome of membership scheme

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Sep 21, 2012 4:12 pm

John Philpott wrote: The bulk of funding used to be generated by an individual subscription plus a loading on the ECF Game Fee: the Game Fee element has now been dropped, so the individual membership rates are inevitably higher.
Locally we dropped charging for individual membership of the county association shortly after Game Fee came in. So the county charges entry fees at club and team level. It was pointless once the BCF had dropped any requirement to collect per head and it saved administration by removing a county post. If it had ever been necessary to define exactly who was an individual member, it would have been anyone who had played in the league, the individual competition or for the county in a county match.

We've retained or reintroduced a loose registration concept, for convenience of player identification in result input and grading and to help resolve "which club do you belong to" disputes.

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