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MACA Board Minutes
 MACA Board Meeting, June 7, 2015
 New England Sports Academy, 345 University Avenue, Westwood, MA 02090



President N. Smolensky called the June Board Meeting to order at 5:03 PM at New England Sports Academy in Westwood.  Eight people were in attendance: President Nathan Smolensky, Treasurer Robert Messenger, Clerk Nicholas Sterling, and Directors Edward Chiu, Jeffrey Caruso, Paul Arond, Dmitry Barash, and Stephen Dann.


Minutes: (i) The September 2014 Board Meeting Minutes were distributed by

N. Sterling; these had been previously approved by e-mail vote. (ii) The 2015 Annual Meeting Minutes were distributed by N. Sterling.  R. Messenger pointed out that the Elections Commission Report that was distributed at the Annual Meeting was correctly used in the Minutes even though later corrections were made to that Report.

* * MOTION made by R. Messenger and seconded by N. Smolensky to accept the Minutes; with one abstention, the MOTION passed. * *


Elections Commission: (a) E. Chiu reported that Survey Monkey, for the online election, had produced a process easy for voters to handle, but difficult for the Commission to handle in terms of counting votes, because MACA did not pay the extra fee required to get automatic vote count as an extra service.  MACA does not currently know what that fee would be, but R. Messenger said it would likely be less expensive than the high charges of producing all paper ballots from previous elections.

(b) R. Messenger said that the original Report from the Annual Meeting had already been posted online, and E. Chiu agreed that the revised version should also be posted forthwith. (c) S. Dann raised some questions about the procedure used by the Elections Commission, including why the ballot count was kept secret and why the names of the actual voters seemed not to be generally known. (d) * * MOTION (615-1) made by

R. Messenger and seconded by S. Dann to thank the Elections Commission and authorize destruction of the ballots; with one abstention, the MOTION passed. * *


Budget: R. Messenger distributed the proposed Budget for FY 2016 that had been assembled by last year’s Budget Committee, and distributed the Treasurer’s Report from the Annual Meeting to provide context.  * * After some discussion and amendments, the Budget was voted to be accepted with one abstention. * *


Committee Chair and Coordinator Nominations: [CLERK’s note: All Committee Chairmen and Coordinators listed below were elected without opposition except where noted.]

            Tournament Committee Chairman: Robert Messenger

            Scholastic Committee Chairman: Steven Frymer

            Bylaws Committee Chairman: Robert Messenger

            Publications Committee: [eliminated – see MOTION 615-2 below]

            Promotions Committee Chairman: Edward Chiu

            Education Committee Chairman: Nicholas Sterling

            Web Coordinator: Nicholas Sterling

            Prison Chess Coordinator: Steven Frymer

            Membership Secretary: Robert Messenger

            Budget Committee Chairman: [CLERK’S NOTE: this position was not discussed]

            Fundraising Coordinator: [left vacant]

            LMCF Coordinator: Steven Frymer

            Volunteer Coordinator: Nathan Smolensky (Stephen Dann also nominated himself, but Nathan Smolensky was voted in by a show of hands, 7-0, with one abstention)

            Assistant Clerk: Robert Messenger

            Parliamentarian: Jeffrey Caruso

Club Coordinator: Stephen Dann (one vote against)


(a) Tournaments: (i) R. Messenger reported that the MA Open had 236 players altogether, an increase of 11 players over last year’s figure of 225.  The tournament made a profit of $2555 riding on a donation of close to $4000 made by Walter Champion; this donation raised the 1st Place Prize to $1000 and covered, among other expenses, four Most Interesting Game Prizes.   Prizes were 75% guaranteed based on 100 entries.  It was FIDE-rated in the Championship Section.  (ii) The NE Open will be held 9/5-9/7/15 at the Holiday Inn in Boxborough, with Alex Relyea as Chief TD to serve as FIDE Arbiter for the Championship Section.  (iii) The other three major Adult Tournaments through the year are the Greater Boston Open, to be held in Marlboro; the Pillsbury Memorial, possibly to be held at MCC’s new site in Framingham, and the MA G/60 in the spring, with location TBD.


(b) Scholastic: (i) R. Messenger reported on behalf of S. Frymer that the MA Girls Championship, held on 5/3/15 after a snow postponement, drew in 20 players K-12.  Ria Dawar won and will be MACA’s rep at the National Girls’ Invitational Tournament.  (ii) Scholastic will need to review the rules for the Spiegel Cup State Championship, including the four Qualifiers and the Spiegel Cup Series (within which N. Sterling directed three tournaments at NESA, Fuller Craft, and Concord-Carlisle).  (iii) N. Sterling reported that, if space allowed, the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton may offer its space to host a MACA Scholastics event.  It is possible they can host 150-200 people, including both kids and parents.


(c) Bylaws: R. Messenger reported that online voting was approved in the last Election.


(d) (i) * * MOTION (615-2) made by N. Smolensky and seconded by

R. Messenger to eliminate the Publications Committee, because the Editor and any staff he employs can handle the publication of Chess Horizons without the need of a Committee.  The VOTE was taken; with one opposed and one abstention, the MOTION passed. * * (ii) N. Smolensky reported that the upcoming issue of Chess Horizons had been sent to the printer, and proofs would soon be circulated for editing.


            (e) Promotions: E. Chiu had circulated a report prior to the Annual Meeting.  Efforts were underway to include Chess Horizons in RSS Feed, and to circulate Reasons to Play Chess and Chess Trivia online.   We may do more active Membership surveys on the website itself, including embedded within the Calendar.  This may help spruce up the content of the website and gather important info about Membership interests, including determining what factors draw them to specific tournaments.


           (f) Education: N. Sterling spoke about the Education Initiative to bring chess into the day curriculum of schools in grades K-3.  A guide and a brochure have been published.  N. Sterling also showed MACA the Giant Chess Set donated to NESA recently by Winchester Chess Club.  Finally he mentioned the library database that he has worked on for some years with S. Dann’s help.  S. Dann asked the Board to congratulate N. Sterling on his excellent work as Education Chair over the last year.


            (g) Fundraising: The position was postponed.


            (h) Volunteer: There was discussion that, with some restrictions, parents could assist TDs at tournaments as monitors, and that TDs should wear lanyards to identify themselves.


Old Business: none


New Business: There will be discussion about reinvesting some of MACA’s funds into annuities at future Meetings.  R. Messenger has inquired about this at Citizens Bank and has found an annuity investment vehicle yielding 2.6% over 5 years.  [CLERK’S Note: This figure was changed to 2.4% over 5 years after the Meeting, in addition to another annuity yielding 1.75% over 3 years.]


President N. Smolensky adjourned the June Board Meeting at 7:50 PM.  The date of the July Board Meeting was set at Sunday 7/26/15, with time and location TBD.  [CLERK’S Note: The time and location were later selected as 3:00 PM at New England Sports Academy in Westwood, MA.



                                                                        Respectfully submitted,




                                                                        Nicholas Sterling, Clerk














Massachusetts Chess Association

FY16 Budget

Approved at the 6/7/15 MACA Board Meeting




Memberships and subscriptions




Transfer from Life Membership Fund




Transfer from Prison Chess Fund




Chess Horizons sales




Chess Horizons ads




Adult tournaments (net)




Scholastic tournaments (net)




Donations (not including tournaments)




Other revenue (interest, labels etc.)




Total revenue






Chess Horizons (1 double, 2 single issues)




U.S. Chess League




Player travel




















Special projects




Administrative expenses




PayPal service fees








Miscellaneous expenses




Total expenses