Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

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The_Nusiance
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by The_Nusiance » 2012-04-11

gotta love soccer moms....al-right!

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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Captain Igmund » 2012-04-12

I will support a increase of dues to 3 dollars at day events and 10 dollars for campouts...but the super increase was a horrible idea...just fyi, the bay bridge is upto 4 dollars now, gas is close to 4 dollars...I travel damn near 300 miles to most events..if Aquilonia didn't carpool, id doubt wed be involved in this game anymore, as a country. O.k. oregon ridge is a nice place, but if were paying for the site, why 5 events? why not, burtonsville where its free? The current E.B. has a thankless job, I do sympathize with their situation, and I'm sure a ammicable solution will be found. I will try to make as many events as possible, but I'm already being squeezed at all corners of life, a few bucks here and there are starting to take their toll. Oh and fyi the world plot blows, it takes the life outta day battles. I for one will not be participating in that silliness anymore and will encourage my countrymen to do the same. Its a total waste of the games time. I'm agreeing with Inox on this one.

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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Ericson » 2012-04-12

Lord Dubh wrote:We provided budget information to the Senate at the meeting prior to the vote. Outside of that it will be in the Annual Report. I have also been informed we are filing our tax information as we speak and that is also available. I believe there is a way to see previous tax information as well, I will see if the treasurer can get a link for you to the IRS website for that...


Unfortunately, the IRS website doesn't actually include any information. All it says is that Darkon grossed less than $50,000 in receipts.

While I may disagree with keeping all that information private, it is not really my decision. I just hope this doesn't negatively affect the game.

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Ogre Solaris
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Ogre Solaris » 2012-04-12

I don't know if $5 is the correct amount, I'm not sure we will know until it is in effect for a while and we see an annual report or budget or whatever.

Still, it's a 3 dollar increase. Percentages aside, because it was a 150% bump, it's less than a gallon of gas, less than a pack of cigarettes, less than a blue camp mat.

I look at it this way. If you can't pay 5 bucks to play, you probably can't afford to maintain your weapons, armor, and garb either making your stuff less safe and not something I want to be on the other end of. I understand that a lot of Darkonians are broke and/or travel very far (the closest site to me is Roundtree and it's still 25 miles one way so I get the travel thing), but I'm ok with this decision because if we need to pay for sites we need to pay for sites. It's that simple. If operating costs go up, income must go up to cover it. Any surplus we have or had will not last forever and needs to be augmented by cash flow. It's simple business mathematics. It may not be a popular decision, but raising prices on any product rarely is. That doesn't mean it's not necessary.
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Lord Valfryn
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Lord Valfryn » 2012-04-12

^ this

Would always rather have a surplus, larger the better. Especially if we are looking into more sites that don't have goalposts on them. We have found out that our venues may need to change rapidly, being prepared for the eventuality of more expensive sites is a good call imho.
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Amazing_Iltztafein
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Amazing_Iltztafein » 2012-04-12

Captain Igmund wrote:I will support a increase of dues to 3 dollars at day events and 10 dollars for campouts...but the super increase was a horrible idea...just fyi, the bay bridge is upto 4 dollars now, gas is close to 4 dollars...I travel * near 300 miles to most events..if Aquilonia didn't carpool, id doubt wed be involved in this game anymore, as a country. O.k. oregon ridge is a nice place, but if were paying for the site, why 5 events? why not, burtonsville where its free?

Because at Burtonsville, if it rains at all, we would be forced to leave. Would you rather pay more for a nice site after driving all of that way, or be forced to go home because of the rain but still pay $2? The back-up plan to Burtonsville is Redland, which we can't use over 1/4 of the year, anyway - a time when it tends to rain a good bit, too.

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Inox
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Inox » 2012-04-12

This paid sites argument is crap. Redland is a permit registration, as are many other places we could use.

Why are we not scouting out other parks and private land sites?

How much exactly are we spending per event these days?
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Ogre Solaris
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Ogre Solaris » 2012-04-12

I'm not sure how much crap it is. Look at the schedule.

Out of 27 events listed, 12 of them are either Reunion, Patuxent, or Oregon Ridge, all pay sites from what I understand.

That leaves 15 others, one of which is TBA. It's possible some of the others charge some amount of money as well for permits or actual use (Roundtree, Burtonsville, Redland, Centennial are the 4 listed) and who knows where TBA will be or if it will cost anything.

If insurance has increased as has been said, that's another concern that increases costs. Like I said, $5 may not be the exact right amount, and it may be perfect, at the very least it won't run us out of money as quickly as $2 would have.

Bottom line, the EB says costs went up, revenue needs to go up along with it. I trust that the EB is running the club at least semi-responsibly so if they say costs have gone up and we need to pay $5, then I accept that explanation. Transparency of the budget, annual report, or whatever would confirm that, but I don't really require that for myself. It's like the Obama birth certificate argument. There are checks and balances for a reason, conspiracies about wrongdoing at the top are generally unfounded and with the release of a document or two can be more or less quieted.

The other alternatives to a price increase would be stop having Darkon, have it less often, have it sans insurance, or have it in a less than legal fashion (squatting on parks where we're not really supposed to be). Which would you prefer we do?
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Inox
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Inox » 2012-04-12

There is no need for conjecture. We need to see numbers.

By raising day dues to only $3, and campouts to $10 (again, way below what other groups charge for campouts), we'd have raised income by 50% without threatening attendance.

If we are in need of that much more cash, we are doing things horribly, horribly wrong.
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Lord Valfryn » 2012-04-12

I was definitely for primarily raising Camp Out costs, as those were supposedly the most expensive, though I still am not opposed to the unilateral raise.
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Captain Igmund » 2012-04-12

Well if darkon wasn't pussies, and we fought in the woods, when it rained, then we wouldn't be destroying fields. If we had done that at catonsville more often, we might still be using the site...a little more common sense, would go a long way..;-)

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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Thrush Svartehjertet » 2012-04-12

We can't do woods... Darkon might get a twig in it's vag... We gotta have big open field battles only, cause they're easy.

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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by fingers630 » 2012-04-12

Common sense at Darkon? You talking Crazy!

Yeah its a shame we didnt use the woods more at Millersville and Catonsville. Hell the big field at the bottom of the woods in Redland is a damned nice spot...I just wont be playing a cleric with plate and tower shield there again!
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Thrush Svartehjertet » 2012-04-12

fingers630 wrote:the big field at the bottom of the woods in Redland is a damned nice spot.


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Prince Andrick
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Prince Andrick » 2012-04-12

Funny how people who have no clue think they do based on the past. I grow very tired of the belligerent attitides when all the EB did was:

Bust ass to find suitable sites (ie, ones we can use year round (unlike Redland unless we use the woods), ones we can use regardless of the weather (unlike Burtonsville), ones we can legally be at (unlike Millersville), and.find sites with acceptable fields and parking for our size club. But of course, the fact that we lost free sites and decided fighting at pay sites better suited to our needs was a good idea is *.

I really understand some people are concerned with the effect this might have on attendance. I just wish senators (and me) had done a better job making sure everyone knew about this before it happened, and that those bitching the most would look for alternatives to help mitigate the potential loss of new players like Catrel did.

I will say again, from the numbers that I have actually seen, this was needed. All the crap about a 50% increase would have been enough is unfounded, because you have not seen the numbers. We LOST money with LESS expenses last year. And the year before. A 50% increase may, and I do say may, have broken even but I have my doubts. We were in the situation of trying to reverse large losses AND cover additional expenses. A professional CPA examined the numbers and suggested the amount we needed. I regret that this is such a hardship for so many, but we did (with a nearly unanimous Senate vote) what we believed we had to be on the safe side ratherbthen the squeak by side.

That's the best explanation I can give. You don't have to like it, bit it is the truth.
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by jayjay » 2012-04-12

i don't know how people didn't know this was coming. it was discussed on the boards before. there was an announcement that this was going to be talked about at senate. after it passed it was posted here. people just need to get their online country members to talk to them. i posted to the NQ facespace page the day it passed.

also, $5 really isn't that big of a deal. if someone can't afford $5, they may need to rethink some life choices they made. i'm not excepting people to all go buy $200+ anok made PD shields, but $5 shouldn't be that big of a deal. especially if it gets us good sites free of soccer players. it's like ogre said a few posts up, if you don't have $5, how are you making gear? calm down people and be glad that we have good sites to use, where the club won't get sued (also having a surplus of money in the event that something like this happens is a good thing to have) for being there. this is a very responsible thing for the EB and senate to do.
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Inox
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Inox » 2012-04-12

Duke Andrick wrote:Funny how people who have no clue think they do based on the past.


Yeah, sure would be nice to see those numbers. Oh, wait.

Duke Andrick wrote:those bitching the most would look for alternatives to help mitigate the potential loss of new players like Catrel did.


I put in a lot of work on the EB over 5 years, and I scouted out new sites as well. At times literally, driving long distances to slog around in bad weather on my weekends off. I think I've earned the right to grouse when the day event dues jump 250% and the numbers aren't being shared outside of Senate (and some "Annual Report" due at some point down the line.)

Duke Andrick wrote:A professional CPA examined the numbers and suggested the amount we needed.


A CPA can tell you what you need based on what you say you are going to spend. They cannot automatically confirm that said expenditures are WISE.
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Ericson » 2012-04-12

I've sent the EB sites which we could easily use for very low cost. I found one right inside of downtown Laurel that isn't touched all winter long. A little league baseball team uses it during the season, other than that it is completely empty. There are 500+ parking spots right next to it, nobody is there on the weekends. Best of all, it is owned by a BAR that has FOOD and BEER 30 feet away. I sent an e-mail to the President about it and heard nothing.

It's not that hard, we ask this place if we can use their baseball field during the winter. Once little league season comes around Darkon buys a few bags of grass seed ($100 at most) so the little leaguers can play.

I just saved us $300 per event (which is what Patuxent River Park costs) and it takes a tiny bit of work.

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Prince Andrick
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Prince Andrick » 2012-04-12

Duke Andrick wrote:A professional CPA examined the numbers and suggested the amount we needed.


A CPA can tell you what you need based on what you say you are going to spend. They cannot automatically confirm that said expenditures are WISE.[/quote]

The thing is, we have done what we believe is right for the game, and what we believe to be WISE. You are of course entitled to your opinion, but you are not the one making the decisions this year. You can of course vote us all out next year if we choose to run. You can also attempt to have one or all of us removed from office if you'd like.

Or, I don't know, you could help come up with ideas that may help to mitigate the potential negative impact on new players, which seems to be your biggest concern.

I believe you want what is best for Darkon. I just don't agree with the method you chose to approach your concerns. It also amazes me that you and others don't believe what we are saying about the current cash situation, like we would simply lie for some ulterior motive. Really, it's either that or you believe we don't have the intelligence to figure out a reasonable budget.

Anyway, I am done. We raised dues to what we thought we had to to keep the game solvent. Nothing more, and nothing less.
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Kobalos » 2012-04-13

Thank you, Exec Board, for being willing to make hard choices. Thank you, Senate, for giving your time and serious consideration to these issues. I am behind you on this.

The dues vote was pushed through as an emergency measure, but all Senators were given advance notice, and they voted. The time has passed to simply decry the dues hike. If you want to do something to make the situation better, we will all applaud your efforts.
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Inox
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Inox » 2012-04-13

Duke Andrick wrote:I believe you want what is best for Darkon. I just don't agree with the method you chose to approach your concerns. It also amazes me that you and others don't believe what we are saying about the current cash situation, like we would simply lie for some ulterior motive. Really, it's either that or you believe we don't have the intelligence to figure out a reasonable budget.


Don't take this as an attack on your intelligence; ultimately, this is not about you.

However, it is going to be hard to convince me that we can't find inexpensive (e.g. permit registration) or free sites to use, and that we need to pay large sums every time. It is going to be hard to persuade me that we need a membership card reader program. Basically, it's going to be tough to sell me a 250% price increase for day events, absent some really unique circumstances.

That's almost a moot point, though, since the transparency (on both funds and the rationale behind the decisions) doesn't exist. I can think of no reason to only make this available briefly at Senate, and not continually to the game at large. We post and make topics for the tiniest semantic change to the rules, but we can't be arsed to break down our costs and costing decisions in a more public way?

Doesn't that strike anyone else as odd?
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The_Nusiance
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by The_Nusiance » 2012-04-16

I ain't happy with it,but I'll live with it,not like its the end of the world or anything crazy happening

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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Ulrich » 2012-04-16

I have to agree with inox. We all invest our monies into this game. Although a raise in cost is probably long overdue, I don't think it's too much to ask to see a simple spreadsheet. What figures were provided the cpa?

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The Quiet Cleric
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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by The Quiet Cleric » 2012-04-20

Agreeing with Lord Inox. Why so much push-back in getting a simple spreadsheet?

I think a "State of Darkon's Finances" presentation should be given annually at the Triumvirate by the Treasurer, complete with a spreadsheet handout. As dues-paying members, we have a right to know exactly where every penny is going.

Hell, since I'm on a proposal-writing binge right now, I think I can fit in a bylaws amendment before quitting time today.

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Re: Dues Increase to $5 for Day Events?!

Post by Lord Cailen Sendor » 2012-04-20

ROFL!!!!! it is my understanding at the last Triumvirate the budget was shown to all in attendence that wished to see it. That is why there were discussions that is why the dues did go up ... that is why it was brought before senate AND presented there. AND if I am not mistaken John intends to do it AGAIN at the next Triumvirate meeting with where the new income has brought us to. AND if I am not mistaken in the last few years many EB's did not show the budget to senate or to the Triumvirate at all.

Ah well I guess ill just pay my dues and be greatful for the great work our current EB is doing.
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