At the Board of Directors' meeting in October, it was decided to take a proposed dues increase to the membership for a vote. The following is a letter from the National Officers explaining the need for this increase that will be published in the next magazine along with a ballot for your vote. We wanted to put this on the website so that you would have enough time to make an informed decision. If you have any questions, please contact your region president or the National Officer in charge of your region.
You will find enclosed in this issue of the NSTRA magazine a ballot requesting a vote to increase the annual membership dues from the current $50 to the proposed $75 annually. We want to begin by saying that we the new team of officers are very excited about the future of NSTRA. We do not want to accept merely “getting by”. We want to make every effort to move the needle forward and we truly need your help to do this. We want all our new and old members to feel like NSTRA is a great organization and that there is bright future ahead for everyone. With this feeling we hope that potential members will see this and want to join us and be a part of NSTRA. A growing membership solves a lot of issues, and although it is never desirable to increase membership cost sometimes it is necessary to retain the integrity of the organization and provide the tools necessary for growth.
This increase has been discussed at the three most recent Board of Directors meetings and has hopefully filtered back to the membership during that time. Your region representatives have been encouraged to take the request back to their membership and discuss the need for this increase and explain why it is necessary for our organization moving forward.
The overall financial health of NSTRA is solid. We have cash in the bank and we have all our costs under control. The operating system is paid for in full. The balance sheet is strong. So, what we need now is a growing membership.
This proposed dues increase would facilitate additional operating funds to further market our sport and attempt to position our organization for expansion. It would also enable us to enhance the prize packages offered at our National Championships which would potentially increase participation at those events.
The current officer group is committed to efforts at not only the National level but the regional and local levels as well. The group feels that growth must come from regional and local efforts, but that the National organization can assist in these efforts through programs and incentives that can only be offered with an increased operating budget.
We must not sit still and watch the membership numbers decline but instead make every effort necessary to not just retain the members we have but to reach new fellow bird dog enthusiasts and encourage them to join us in this sport that we all enjoy.
We would like to thank you for taking the time to read this explanation of the requested annual membership dues increase and encourage you to reach out to any of the five National Officers if you have further questions or concerns regarding this request.
National Officers, NSTRA