A meeting of the Council of Administration was held at The National Civil War Museum in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Voting members of the Council of Administration (CoA) present were Commander-in-Chief (C-in-C) Edward J. Krieser, Senior Vice Commander-in-Chief (SVC-in-C) George Powell, Junior Vice Commander-in-Chief (JVC-in-C) Robert Grim, Past Commander-in-Chief (PC-in-C) Danny Wheeler, National Secretary Todd Shillington, National Treasurer James Pahl, National Quartermaster (QM) Elmer Atkinson, PC-in-C, and CoA members Kent Armstrong, Gary Gibson, and Donald Darby. Non-voting CoA members present were PC-in-C's Charles Corfman, Andrew Johnson, and Richard Orr. Attending, as guests were Chief-of-Staff Ron Gill, PDC, Timothy J. Schaible, Executive Director (E.D.), and Brother Ken Hershberger, PDC.
Council of Administration Members were warmly greeted upon their arrival by Mr. George E. Hicks, Chief Executive Officer of The National Civil War Museum. Mr. Hicks gave the Council Members a brief tour of the office space under lease as National Headquarters by the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. After a few welcoming remarks, Mr. Hicks took his leave.
The meeting was opened with a prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, led by C-in-C Krieser.
Secretary Shillington read the minutes of the CoA meetings of November 17 and November 19, 2000. The minutes were approved as read.
Treasurer Pahl reported on the different accounts held by the Order, informing the CoA that the Life Membership funds had been deposited in interest bearing accounts. He summarized that although financially sound, the SUVCW must use prudence in spending, and get value for every dollar spent, in order to leave funds for those succeeding us. Council Member Darby moved to accept the Treasurer's report, with a second by Council Member Armstrong; motion carried.
National Eagle Scout Coordinator Ron Gill reported on the current situation of the program. He has, since the August 2000 Encampment, despite there being no National program or budget in place, provided more than one hundred certificates directly to Eagle Scouts where there is no Department program, and more than one hundred to Departments with a program. Due to the tremendous popularity and growth of the Eagle Scout Certificate program, Brother Gill is working with SVC-in-C and Program and Policy Chairman George Powell to develop a new program. Discussion took place as to whether participation in the Eagle Scout certificate program is mandatory by Camps and Departments.
Secretary Shillington provided the CoA with an update on the publishing of Proceedings of National Encampments. Rebecca Pratt has reported that the 2000 Encampment Proceedings is nearly done, with the 1998 Proceedings will probably be finished by August 2001.
Secretary Shillington read the report of Keith Harrison, PC-in-C, National Signals Officer and Chairman of the National Committee on Communications and Technology (C & T Committee). Highlights of the report included PC-in-C Harrison's objection to having been omitted from the circulation of a report made to the CoA by National Civil War Memorials Chairman Donald Darby. PC-in-C Harrison's report referred to the differences between a centralized database and an interactive database. The report continued by summarizing PC-in-C Orr's activity as a member of the C & T Committee. PC-in-C Orr has explored the issue of making the Graves Registration program interactive through the Order's web site. Aspirion, Inc. has proposed a method for this using Microsoft Access 2000 and Cold Fusion. At this point, Brother Orr explained in detail how this would be done using three separate databases to protect the master database. Treasurer Pahl moved to accept the report of the Communications and Technology Committee, and the Order enter into a contract with Aspirion, Inc., or a like company to develop the Graves Registration Program described in the report, and that the Treasurer be instructed to adjust the current budget to allow this expense. Also to direct the Communications and Technology Committee to explore for the next budget year the possibility of creating a similar program for the registration of monuments and memorials. Council Member Armstrong seconded the motion. After discussion on the viability of Aspirion, Inc., and the ability of the new program to be carried on the existing web site, the motion was carried unanimously.
The report of QM Atkinson included the welcome news that there have been no price increases this year, and that he has filed 300 orders in the period since the National Encampment. A problem with large orders and payments with multiple checks was reported. Since two orders were received in the amounts of several hundred dollars, the flat fee of $3.00 for shipping and handling was insufficient. Also, it was very inconvenient to have to process an order paid for with endorsed third party checks. JVC-in-C Grim made a motion, amended by Treasurer Pahl, that the CoA accepts the QM's proposed postage and handling schedules, and require that only one check be submitted for each order to the QM. PC-in-C Wheeler seconded the motion. Motion carried.
PC-in-C Corfman, Chairman of the National Encampment Site Committee, reported that the Encampments for 2001 in Springfield Missouri, and 2002 in Springfield Illinois, are under contract. He also reported that it is getting increasingly difficult to negotiate all the amenities desired for a reasonable price for the Encampment in the Cincinnati, Ohio-Covington, Kentucky area in 2003. Council Member Darby moved that the ladies organizations of the Allied Orders be informed that beginning in 2003, the SUVCW will not accept the burden of paying for their President's rooms and piano, if they cannot be negotiated at no charge. QM Atkinson seconded the motion. Motion carried.
Discussion took place on the history of the Life Member Program(s), the amount of money these programs cost the Order, and the amount of money likely required by a new Life Member Program to not detrimentally affect the Order's financial standing. Council Member Darby moved that the Committee on Life Membership instruct the National Committee on Constitution and Regulations to a draft a motion necessary to change Regulations, to implement a modified Life Member Program as discussed at this CoA meeting. Motion carried. Council Member Darby then made a motion, seconded by PC-in-C Wheeler, that the fee for the new Life Member Program be $750 for Brothers under 65 years of age, and $500 for those over 65 years of age, with the rest of the program subject to Regulations Chapter III, Article VI, Sections 3 and 4. Motion carried.
As Chairman of the Remembrance Day Committee, PC-in-C Atkinson reported that most who commented on the 2000 ceremonies had positive remarks concerning the joint ceremony held at The Angle. It was recommended to change the arrangement of alternating Union and Confederate units in the parade, back to the old method of Union units first, followed by the Confederates. On behalf of the committee, PC-in-C Atkinson requested that due to the amount of work involved, and the early dates by which it must be accomplished, the Remembrance Day Committee is appointed earlier. After discussion it was determined that this was not necessary, that the sitting committee could perform the tasks needed even if it were not necessarily the committee that would be in place at the time of a given Remembrance Day. PC-in-C Orr suggested that the responsibility of obtaining park and parade permits be shifted to the SVR, so as to take advantage of the stable command structure, assuring the Park Service the continuity in contact it desires.
Executive Director Schaible reported that the National Headquarters is established at the National Civil War Museum in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The business address is Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, P.O. Box 1865, Harrisburg, PA, 17105-1865. E.D. Schaible reported that National Civil War Museum C.E.O. George Hicks has requested that the SUVCW supply the museum with approximately five table top brochure racks to place throughout the museum to make SUVCW information available to museum patrons. The U.S. Postal Service has assured E.D. Schaible that despite past problems, the SUVCW will receive all mail addressed to the Post Office box.
After the CoA reviewed several proposals solicited by E.D. Schaible, Treasurer Pahl moved to accept the proposal numbered three, to purchase the furnishings described therein, less the three foot table, but to include the desk, lateral file, executive chair, and two guest chairs. With multiple seconds, the motion carried unanimously.
Several CoA Members left the meeting room to measure the storage area assigned to the SUVCW at the Headquarters. E.D. Schaible agreed to obtain quotes for storage cabinets to fit the storage area.
It was determined that the E.D. will have a key to access the Headquarters office, with the museum to allow access to Council of Administration Members.
PC-in-C Orr raised the question of moving records currently in storage with Iron Mountain to the National Headquarters. PC-in-C Orr noted that there are several factors involved, including the sheer volume of the records, and the current inability of the SUVCW to securely store the records at the Headquarters. PC-in-C Atkinson moved, with SVC-in-C Powell seconding, to continue with the record storage with Iron Mountain through June 2001. Motion carried.
Secretary Shillington proposed changed Quarterly Report Forms 27 and 35, as submitted by James Lyons, PDC. The CoA voted to approve the forms with minor changes.
SVC-in-C Powell presented updates on quotes to have the Banner edited professionally, to include advertising. Discussion ensued concerning the inability of The Banner to make a profit without supplying additional tax and audit information to the Internal Revenue Service.
A request to allow Champion Hill Camp No. 17, Department of Indiana, to supply for sale coffee mugs with SUVCW Badge emblem was denied. It was determined that since the mugs were to be offered for sale with a customer's photograph imprinted with SUVCW emblems, control of who SUVCW is associated with on the mugs would be lost. Secretary Shillington moved, with Council Member Darby seconding, to disallow this use of SUVCW emblems. Motion carried.
SVC-in-C Powell moved to allow Camp No. 3, Department of Michigan, to extend their Camp Officer installations. Seconded by PC-in-C Wheeler, the motion carried.
Council Member Gibson displayed a name tag as sold by Benjamin Harrison Camp No. 356, Department of Indiana, noting that it was not what he believed to be approved for sale by the CoA. Treasurer Pahl moved to revoke the license of Benjamin Harrison Camp No. 356 to produce the name tags, on the basis that what was originally approved to be sold is not the current product. The motion was carried. Further discussion showed a consensus that a reapplication, based on the original product, would be fairly considered.
Commander-in-Chief Krieser declared the meeting adjourned.
Respectfully submitted in Fraternity, Charity and Loyalty,
Todd A. Shillington