2022 Annual General Meeting

Annual General Meeting of the Auckland Chess Association was held online on Sunday 24th April 2022 in Bruce Pollard's Zoom chatroom.

2022 Annual General Meeting

Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Auckland Chess Association was held online at 7.03pm on Sunday 24th April 2022 in Bruce Pollard’s Zoom chatroom. Minutes of the AGM are available below.

 

AUCKLAND CHESS ASSOCIATION INC

Minutes of Annual General Meeting held online in Bruce Pollard’s Zoom chatroom on 24th April 2022

Present:

Bruce Pollard (chair) and Chris Joel (both Waitakere); Daniel Johns (minutes) (North Shore); John McRae, Paul Postma, and Alex Postma (Papatoetoe); Timothy Ha and Keong Ang (Auckland Chess Centre); Ron Lanning (Counties); Manoj Asrani (Auckland Central Chess Club). Nigel Metge and Paul Spiller was in attendance. Howick-Pakuranga and Summit Chess Club were not represented.

The meeting opened at 7:03

2022

Apologies: No apologies were presented.

The minutes of the previous AGM were taken as read, and confirmed as a correct record (moved Chris/seconded John).

Business arising: None.

The Annual Report had been previously circulated, but Bruce nevertheless read it. He also praised John for his work for ACA over many years. John noted that ACA’s 40 tables were now kept in multiple locations by the Waitakere and Papatoetoe clubs.
Daniel objected to the Report stating, in relation to the Jenkins Trophy, that North Shore “demanded total control”. Keong objected to the Report describing the meeting at which a decision regarding the Jenkins trophy was upheld as a “committee meeting”, describing this as a factual error. Chris suggested that Bruce rewrite that part of the Report; Bruce indicated his willingness to do so. Timothy noted that the decision about the Jenkins challenge had been a difficult problem; John opined that the had a solution been found, the response to COVID would probably have prevented the match in any case.
Keong further objected to the statements about the proposal to host the Interschool Finals, believing that the Report should have simply reported the decision not to do so and left out any opinions. Several of those present re-stated their reasons for supporting or opposing that proposal, and for taking their different stances on whether a budget would have been required; Chris suggested that the meeting was not an appropriate venue for rehashing that debate.
It was resolved (moved Keong/seconded Chris) that the Annual Report be adopted, subject to noting the need for excluding from the sections on the Jenkins Trophy and the Interschools anything but undisputed facts.

Manoj Asrani left at 7:35 pm.

Partial Annual Accounts had been presented; it was noted that they contained an error regarding which clubs had paid how much in affiliation fees. John noted that the Executive had failed to find a suitable accountant to complete the accounts; Nigel suggested a candidate. Keong noted that the Treasurer usually prepares the Accounts, and that the previous Treasurer had left a template for Accounts; Bruce did not know where to find this template. Nigel offered to help Bruce to complete the Accounts. It was noted that the Accounts, being incomplete, were in no condition to be adopted.

Setting fees: It was resolved (moved Chris/seconded Paul P) that the fees adopted in 2021 be retained for 2022.
note: These fees are an Affiliation Fee be $100 for affiliated clubs and $50 for associated clubs, plus $1 per junior member and $2 per adult member, with all tournament entry fees being $0.

 

Election of officers:

The following nominations were made:

Position

Nominee

Nominator

Seconder

Chair

Bruce Pollard

John McRae

Ron Lanning

Vice-Chair

John McRae

Daniel Johns

Alex Postma

Secretary

Daniel Johns

Chris Joel

Bruce Pollard

Treasurer

Bruce Pollard

John McRae

Daniel Johns

Committee

Timothy Ha

Daniel Johns

Keong Ang

 

Chris Joel

Bruce Pollard

Daniel Johns

 

Keong Ang

John McRae

Ron Lanning

 

Ron Lanning

Bruce Pollard

Paul Postma

 

Paul Postma

John McRae

Ron Lanning

 

Helen Milligan

Daniel Johns

Keong Ang

All nominees were declared elected unopposed.
Notes: Some absent people, whose willingness to serve could not be ascertained, were mentioned as potential Committee Members: Stuart Vogel and Ying Wing. It was noted that if they were willing then the Committee could co-opt them.

Tournaments:

Bruce outlined that the decisions needed, aside from what events to hold: the required COVID Traffic Light setting for holding events; whether to require players to be vaccinated; and whether to require players to wear face masks. Those present described the current policies of their respective clubs. All but Counties had been closed in early 2022, but only Howick-Pakuranga remained closed. Several clubs had required proof of vaccination when they first re-opened, but only Waitakere still did so. All open clubs except Counties required players to wear face masks. Nigel noted that there was no legal requirement for face masks in tournaments, but that for some clubs it might be a requirement imposed by their landlords.

Daniel said he opposed continuing any mask requirements if the COVID Traffic Light moved to Green; Chris suggested reviewing any policy if and when Green rules came into effect. Keong noted that the sunset clause of the COVID-19 Public Health Response Act would take effect in July if Parliament did not extend it, and that this could eliminate the COVID Traffic Light.

John noted that if tournaments were played in the Stables Café (which was likely to be available on Sunday evenings), the landlord would not impose any face mask policy. Chris stated that he would personally decline to play if face masks were not required, and further noted that, whatever policy on face masks ACA should adopt, member clubs should be specifically told of this policy.

It was agreed that players in ACA Interclub events must wear face masks so long as the Orange setting of the COVID Traffic Light remained in effect.

It was resolved (moved Bruce/seconded Daniel) that the result of the 2021 B-Grade Interclub, with only four rounds played, be accepted as the final result.

Chris noted that in the past the A-Grade and B-Grade Interclubs had a requirement to submit a team list by the date of the first round, and that consequently players later joining the club could not play; he considered this rule a contributing factor in causing defaults when a club had an unexpected shortage of available players, and also believed that the team list requirement had discouraged Counties and Auckland Central from entering the events. He therefore proposed that each rounds be open to all club members. Keong said that such a policy would be unworkable from an administrative point of view; he also believed that defaults were caused by players informing team captains of their unavailability too late for other players to be selected. Timothy suggested that if late additions to a team were allowed, their number should be limited. Keong noted that team lists were useful for players preparing for games against likely opponents; Chris believed that this concern might be addressed by a notice period for additions.

Alex raised the question of whether the Interclubs should be rated. Timothy believed that the events would be improved by adding NZCF rating; Keong agreed, considering the prospect of NZCF rating to the reason for the current fee structure, but noted that the Orion team tournament software supported by NZCF could not cope with addition of players that affected an individual’s player number within the team.

It was proposed (moved Chris/seconded Bruce) that a team list no longer be required in the A-Grade and B-Grade Interclubs. This was put to the vote. In favour: 4 votes (Papatoetoe; Waitakere). Against: 4 votes: (North Shore; Auckland Chess Centre). Counties abstained. The motion was defeated on the Chair’s casting vote.

Chris and Bruce then made an alternate proposal to allow additions to a team list with a notice period. Timothy opined that players without published NZCF ratings should not be in the B-Grade Interclub in any case, noting that in 2021 Waitakere had unrated players of 1600-1700 strength playing on the lower boards; Chris disagreed, saying that unrated players should be welcome unless they had foreign or FIDE ratings showing them to be too strong. Nigel noted that Keong was correct about what Orion supported, although whether that mattered depended on whether the events were rated; Ron elaborated that use of Orion would not preclude adding players to the bottom of a team list, but that it would be undesirable if this caused a team’s strongest player to play on the bottom board. Nigel could not give a definitive answer on whether the Interclub would incur the Tournament Levy if rated, since this was nor clear under current NZCF rules; he offered to consult with others and report back to Bruce. He further noted the importance of players knowing, from the start, whether or not the tournament was rated; the 2021 Interclub was not rated because the NZCF Council had accepted the objection that it was not advertised as being rated. Daniel noted that if ACA were to pay a Tournament Levy for the A-Grade and B-Grade, the cost would be substantial.

Consideration of the proposal to allow additions to the team with notice was postponed pending a decision on rating. It was proposed (moved Keong/seconded Daniel) that the A-Grade and B-Grade Interclubs be NZCF-rated provided this was free of financial cost to ACA. This was put to the vote. In favour: 4 votes (North Shore; Auckland Chess Centre). Against: 4 votes (Papatoetoe; Waitakere). Counties abstained. The motion was defeated on the Chair’s casting vote.

It was resolved (moved Chris/Seconded Bruce) that ACA allow additions to team lists in the A-Grade and B-Grade Interclubs after the first round, subject to the team informing the organizer and their next opponent two weeks before any match in which the added player played. Auckland Chess Centre voted against the resolution; North Shore abstained.

Any decision about preferred dates for the A-Grade and B-Grade were left to the Committee. Is was noted that if eight clubs competed, the Stables Café would be too small a venue.

Interschools: At Nigel’s request, the topic of Interschools was taken up earlier that its place in the agenda. Nigel said NZCF was looking for help with running Interschool events in Auckland, and noted that Bob Smith and Vivian Smith were retiring from running Interschools. North Shore had long run qualifying events in its own region, while Waitakere, Papatoetoe, and Howick-Pakuranga seemed likely to run the 2022 Interschools in their regions. Nigel said he wanted ACA to be a strong body, capable of holding Interclub, Interschool, and even inter-city events.
Bruce supported using ACA funds for running Interschool events. Nigel said ACA should look after Auckland regional events where its member clubs could not manage without help. Keong said that Auckland Chess Centre was unlikely to want to run the central Auckland regional qualifier, while Bruce thought it unlikely that Summit would be willing to do so. Bruce supported ACA handling overall supervision, but Chris doubted the ability of ACA to supply personnel for its running. Paul Spiller suggested contacting Stuart Vogel.
Those present were unable to commit to help with the event, but several people offered to ask around.

Nigel Metge left at 9:57 pm.

Notified Remits: North Shore had given notice of a motion to replace the ACA Constitution, and an alternate collection of several remits to amend the ACA Constitution (whose combined effect, were they all passed, would be to make the ACA Constitution identical to the one proposed in the first remit).
Bruce noted that one of the purposes of the proposed change was to make ACA compliant with the Incorporated Societies Act 2022, and that ACA, like all Incorporated Societies originally registered under the Incorporated Societies Act 1908, would need to re-register by 2026. He further suggested that the proposed changes should be examined over a longer period of time; but Keong insisted that, the remits having been presented, the matter must be put to a vote. Daniel described the various supporting documents that had been distributed together with the remit. Chris suggested amending the agenda to delay voting on the remits; but Keong pointed out that this would be improper, and also noted that some member clubs might wish to introduce amendments at the 2023 AGM.

The first remit, “that the new constitution be adopted in its entirety”, was then put to the vote and carried, Waitakere voting against it.
note: Bruce and Chris wished it to be known that their reason for opposing the remit was that they had not had sufficient time to examine the provisions of the new constitution.

Paul Spiller and Chris Joel left at 10:19 pm.


Cheating: Bruce identified two aspects of cheating relevant to ACA: if someone were caught cheating in an ACA event, and if ACA were told that someone cheated at other tournaments. John recalled an incident in 2017 when he called attention to a player cheating using a mobile phone, but the Arbiter had merely awarded a default for the particular game; he had also heard reports of online cheating.

Keong said that the key question was the scope of ACA’s role. Cheating in rated tournaments could trigger action by FIDE or NZCF, but in unrated events he saw no need for enforcement action extending beyond the particular event; he believed that ACA, having no rating list, had no business policing events other than its own, but should apply any FIDE or NZCF bans. He also noted that to publish a list of cheaters would risk legal action for defamation. (None of those present were aware of NZCF having banned anyone, although Timothy mentioned that the NZCF Council had at least discussed applying sanctions against a player.)

Alex noted that Stan Yee had banned two players from playing in online events organized by Papatoetoe Chess Club, after Chess.com had accused those players of online cheating, and that he thought such a ban should require more concrete evidence; Keong suggested Alex raise that with the Papatoetoe club’s committee. Bruce said he would find people to form a working group. Suggestions were made as to who might be on such a working group; when Stan Yee was mentioned, Alex opined that he would not be suitable for such a role. Bruce expressed interest in seeing documents related to the ban at Papatoetoe, rather than relying on opinions and second-hand sources; Timothy offered to forward to him such of the relevant documents as he had. Bruce also noted that ACA would need good evidence to take action against anyone accused of online cheating.

General Business: Auckland Central Chess Club had applied for associate membership. Keong noted that this should be automatically approved if the club paid its affiliation fee. action: Ron to supply Bruce with contact information, including the email address of Stuart Vogel.
Ron noted that Counties Chess Club, having become an Incorporated Society, was now an affiliate member.

The meeting closed at 10:39 PM.

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