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August 07, 2005


Why doesn't the AFM report the financial numbers the way they were on the spreadheet from 2000? It looked very complete and had so much detailed breakdowns. At least you can see how much everyone spent besides their salaries. Tom Lee really did spend a lot in 2000 compared to everyone else. I think I know more now why so many people have questioned his expenses over the last few years. Will our IEB or new secretary/treasurer try to report more now? I hope they do.

I saw the messages you had referred to on AFM in Trouble regarding Tom Lee’s travel expenses for the 1st six months of 2005 being $38,000. I had also heard rumblings of this at the convention from IEB members but saw no campaign material on the subject. Of course, unless the Emeriti Officers scavenged the convention delegates tables, we saw very little campaign material on the dais.

In my opinion, any officer spending $38K in the1st six months of any year is extremely excessive. $38K would be a high amount for a full year. The final tally for the year would be astounding from my past experience. Unfortunately, the job of AFM President does require considerable travel, but not this can be done more economically with prudent planning, carefully watching the budget, and not traveling for just any occasion. Negotiations, crisis situations and “showing the flag” at targeted appropriate functions, but within reason, are appropriate travel reasons. I definitely do not miss the amount of travel I did.

My highest full year of expenses (including cell phone, internet access etc.) at the AFM was in 2000 where my total expenses were $34,000. I was not happy having spent that much – but I am generally known to be cheap when using other people’s money. That same year, Tom Lee as Secretary Treasurer spent $47,000 which was an indicator of things to come.

For the 1st time, the method of reporting the 2000 LM2 was changed and the report that was filed and signed extremely late in 2001 by Tom Lee as both President and former Secretary Treasurer showed a distinct departure from the accountability that had previously existed on the LM2 regarding officers and staff total expenses. I could even figure where they came up with the numbers for 2000.

In early 2002 after seeing the LM2, I contacted several IEB members and gave them a copy of the complete financial accounting that the finance dept. had created for 2000 and a later reply from the AFM said everything was in order – only that the reporting requirements had changed.

I then suggested to a couple of conferences that they adopt a resolution that would go to the Locals Conference Council to ask the IEB to provide an annual breakdown of all expenses so that locals and members could have an accurate accounting of expenses for teach year. Unfortunately for locals, the Finance Committee and members, nothing came of that.

So the bottom line now is the $38K in travel is actually greater when you include cell phone, internet expenses and other incidentals which comprise total expenses. You can view the actual 2000 record from the finance department for all AFM Officers and Staff at my website section by going here: http://home.comcast.net/~syoungafm/events.htm --- and scroll to the bottom of the page.

You can also view the proposed resolution I had created which could still be valid if applied.

Robert, I want to thank you for leaving your AFM Observer site up as you promised me at the convention so I could eventually read most everything here. I never did see the photo of me in shorts that you had placed here at the convention that people told me about.

One other group of messages here that caught my attention were the ones about the situation in St. Louis. I wish I had seen them sooner because I agree with the anonymous message that stated it was the local’s responsibility to file the 8(d) notice – not the attorney’s. I would have posted the same reply.

After looking at the considerable number of messages and replies you’ve created here, one thing is very clear to me. Viola players, especially Principal Viola players have far too much time on their hands. Perhaps you should take up a hobby, like learning to play the French horn.

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