Minutes for KSBA Board Meeting on January 4, 2020

Kentucky State Beekeepers Association (KSBA)
January 4, 2020
Special Meeting

Attendance: 9
Tammy Potter, KDA Apiarist (non-voting)
Sarah Preston, CKHP Program Manager (non-voting)
Mike Mabry, KSBA President
Joel Gonia
Joe Chang
Joe Taylor
Jan Rafert
Wes Henry
Rick LeMarr

KSBA President Mike Mabry called the meeting to order at 9:36am

The December 23, 2019, KSBA meeting minutes were distributed through email. A minor change was made to the minutes, and subsequently accepted and approved by the board.

Agenda for Jan. 04, 2020

  • Non-profit status
  • Grant status
  • Draft copy of code of conduct
  • Election protest
  • CKHP protest

Old Business

Reestablish a valid non-profit status, 501(c)5, especially with the IRS. Currently, the KSBA association is in bad standing with the IRS because of its failure to submit a tax return for the last decade. Consequently, KADF grant funding for the Certified Kentucky Honey Program (CKHP) has been suspended until KSBA can present sufficient documentation for reinstatement as a nonprofit has been submitted to the IRS. Mike Mabry (president) and Sarah Preston (CKHP program manager) met with Kenton Ball, attorney, to retain him as the association’s lawyer. The cost to the association will be $2500 retainer fee and $300 an hour and will take approximately three to four months to submit IRS form 1024 and past tax returns to the IRS. The lawyer will collaborate with the CPA, hired by the association, to scrutinize the by-laws, in accordance with current regulation, and submit tax returns and other necessary documentation for the last 3 years in order for the association to be in good standing. The cost of the CPA is $100 per hour. Tentatively, the KSBA presentation to the Kentucky Agriculture Development Board is set at March 13. Joel made a motion that KSBA use funds from its general operating fund to pay for both attorney and CPA fees. Jan seconded. Unanimous approval.

Since the Kentucky Agriculture Development Board funds are suspended until KSBA non-profit status can be reinstated, the board discussed the potential to find other source of income by participating in different venues throughout the year (bridal shows, KY Farm Bureau, etc) and possibly having a co-op with local beekeepers to pay to set up products to sell during these venues. The CKHP program manager will spearhead the effort to research different possible venues for KSBA to participate and set up a booth. The goals are to have representation at approximately 5 venues throughout the state per year. The main concern was not to compete with local beekeepers that have already established a relationship with venues.

Joe Gonia has been asked to establish a business plan that will be presented to the executive meeting on Feb 22. This will give the board members a better understanding on the current fiscal standing with income and expenditure along with a fiscal forecast. Joe C motioned we establish the business plan to include marketing plan to gain clarity on our current fiscal situation. Jan seconded. Unanimous approval.

Joe C will coordinate with David, former secretary and treasurer, to retrieve the PO Box keys. We will continue to utilize the PO Box in Elizabethtown, KY until the expiration of the rental fees and/or reestablishment of the non-profit status, whichever comes last. Joe C will check the PO Box weekly.

Due to our un-forecasted funding projection, the KSBA board voted to suspend its education subsidy for 2020 This is necessary to allow the association to reestablish a valid non-profit status in good standing. The educational subsidy for 2020 will have a caveat for associations to file an application by March 1 for special contingency. Joel motioned that KSBA suspend all educational subsidies, unless there are special contingency issues. Joe C seconded. Unanimous approval.

Because the Kentucky Agriculture Development Funds are suspended due to inaction on the KSBA non-profit status in 2019, the Certified Kentucky Honey Program manager and KSBA webmaster salaries were discussed. Currently, the employment of both positions had been $52,000, not including ancillary costs such as travel or website maintenance. A proposal was made to retain the webmaster and program manager for six months in the amount of $1800 (webmaster) and $6000 (CKHP manager at 10 hours a week), respectively. This fund will be reallocated from the KSBA Honey Booth account. The board is making every effort to its non-profit status reinstated prior to the expiration of the six months. Additionally, the Certified Kentucky Honey Program manager will be authorized per diem for travel cost already approved (5 beekeeper education schools). Jan motioned that we reallocate the money and fund the two positions for six months, Joe T second. Unanimous approval.

Under authorship of Joe C, the code of conduct was distributed to the board members for perusal and input. Mike Mabry will distribute no later than Jan. 14, 2020, for finalization. No changes to KSBA Bylaws will be required as the code of conduct will be included in the KSBA Policies and Procedures as directed by the President. The code of conduct will be effective immediately upon finalization and distributed to the executive committee on Feb 22. The President will be responsible to establish an ethics committee.

In response to a written protest about the 2019 November Fall election of 2020 KSBA officers, the KSBA Board voted to rectify by having a re-election of its officers in March 28, 2020, during the general membership meeting. A nomination committee was established with the following members: Joe Chang, chair (Hardin), Chuck Collins (Marshall), Bradley Hodges (Hopkinsville), Jessica Mayes (Bourbon) and Theresa Martin (Whitley). A new timeline will be established and candidates will submit to the nomination chair Joe Chang for consideration for office within KSBA and this new timeline will be presented no later than Jan 14. Instruction to the nomination committee will be established no later than Jan 14. Joe T motioned to establish nomination committee and follow new established timeline along with instruction for the committee. Joe C seconded. Unanimous approval.

Written protest for the changes to the Certified Kentucky Honey Program (CKHP) was discussed and will be returned without any action by the President. The main point of contention was the change to the moisture content and its name. All changes were presented during the last executive committee meeting and voting was conducted within the established by-laws with no infraction was implemented.

New Business

Joel proposed an associate or corporate membership to generate new source of income. The program manager will check on the legality of receiving corporate funds and this will require further discussion on a reciprocal relationship and board involvement, if any. The main questions are as follows: 1. if KSBA establishes this new potential source of membership dues, what potential benefits are offered to the associate and/or corporate member; 2. Would this jeopardize efforts to reinstate the non-profit status of KSBA?

Because the member-stipend creates accounting issues for the treasurer and the Certified KY Honey Program manager, Joe T motioned to end the stipend to local associations in calendar year 2021 for CKHP. Wes seconded. Unanimous approval.

Mission statement will be distributed no later than Jan. 5, 2020, for inclusion in our amendment to our by-laws.

The KSBA Summer bee school/meeting on July 25 will be at Perryville Battlefield State Historic Site as an opportunity for a Field Day. Sarah Preston will have more information for conducting summer bee school/meeting at this location.

Because the attorney needs updates to the KSBA Bylaws, the Board made changes to the by-laws and these will be presented to the members no later than the middle of January to allow for input and/or discussion at the Feb. 22, 2020, KSBA Meeting.

Topics for the Feb 22, 2020 KSBA Executive Committee Board Meeting, to be held at the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, 109 Corporate Drive, Frankfort, KY 40601:

Voting on Code of Conduct

Approve 2020 Budget

Discuss Business Plan

Amend By-Laws

Candidates for Nomination

Discuss Income Opportunities

The meeting was adjourned 2:10pm.