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2021 AGM minutes

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Date: Sunday 21 March 2021
Time: 5pm
Venue: Don Rowlands Centre, Lake Karapiro

Meeting opened at 5:07pm

  1. Declaration of Membership
    Members of the Association are those who have paid their annual subscriptions but due to Covid 19 this year's membership fees have not yet been charged. There is a matter to consider the 2020 membership fees on this agenda, but as the AGM needs to be held with Financial members the Schools Committee under its powers in Article 6.3 A.
    Which is: The Schools Committee at its sole discretion may admit that Secondary School as a Member School and/or declare that Secondary School's status as a Member School to be currently valid with all associated rights and benefits;

    Advise members that the Schools Committee has officially declared all those entered into the 2021 NISS/SISS and Maadi regattas as valid members of NZSSRA for this AGM.
  2. Roll Call
    123 Members entered so quorum is 50 Members for remits and 25 for other business.
    52 Members present = quorum met.
    Also in attendance: Phillipa Baker-Hogan, Members of Schools Committee - Janey Charlton (NZSSRA President), Bruce Tong (Wentworth Principal and NZRA Board Member), Members of NZSSRA Board - Andrew Carr-Smith, Gus Scott, Trudy keys. Other - Sonya Walker (RowingNZ), Rachael Kennedy (Rowing NZ), Terry Tidbury (Karapiro Rowing Inc).
  3. Apologies
    Jack Collin (Life Member), Scott Wilson (Schools Committee), STLN, CHIL, HAMG, NPLG, RONC, ROSE, TAUH, TAUP, TEKC, TIMB, VILL, SHLH, STBN, STHI, WAKA,
  4. In Memoriam
    Leslie Saywood - Life Member - hugely dedicated to the sport of rowing, was a long-time race official holding Chief Umpire roles at many regattas and was made a NZSSRA Life Member in 2010. He championed the inclusion of octuples events for decades until they were added to the Championships programme in 2016, and the Leslie J. Saywood Challenge Cup - Boys under-15 Octuple is named after him.
    Stood for a moments silence.
  5. President's Address
    What a year it has been, to think a year ago this coming week the country went into Level 4 lockdown. While it saw the 2020 Maadi cancelled, along with many other events and resulted in many disappointed young athletes around the country, we as a country have become stronger and more resiliant.
    It's fantastic to see the growth of Maadi but it also raises some concerns moving forward with regard to how we make the regatta work with the numbers growing. It's a great problem to have but it needs some forethought and planning. Things to consider moving forward are varied and we would love to hear your ideas. The Schools Committee remit about per pupil entry limits gives another option to regatta hosts rather than only having the current entry limit per event as the only way to reduce the number of entries. Options regarding moving towards Novice, Junior and Senior categories across most boat classes, time trials to seed semi finals etc are all ideas along with many others that need to be considered. We all need to realise that something needs to change as we move forward over the next few years.
    We also need to follow closely any rule changes that RNZ are making and moving forward we would like to look at aligning the School Rules so there is just one set of racing rules, with a few add on's to cover off anything that is just specific to school rowing. We are also going to look at the structure of the NZSSRA Board and Schools Committee to align these two groups more closely, so any decision making processes are easier and clearer.
    I would like to take this opportunity to publically say thanks to Sonya Walker, who is stepping down from her position in mid April. Sonya has spent the last seven and a half years working for Rowing NZ. Her original position of Schools and University Manager has more recently morfed into the Domestic manager role. She has also been an Elite Team Manager for the past three years. Sonya's involvement in rowing began as a rower at Wakatipu High School and then at Otago University. She then moved into coaching roles with Wakatipu Rowing Club and Otago University as well as managing NZU crews for a number of years.
    Before working at RNZ Sonya was the Otago Rowing Manager.
    Her work behind the scenes to make the School Committee work is priceless and her knowledge of school rowing, operations and major regatta organization is outstanding. As members of the School Committee we rely on her to lead and educate us on how school rowing operates.. Richard Dykes (current Principal at Nelson College for Boys) highlights Sonya as being extremely well organized, which results in making things happen. Qualities of trust and confidence are something Sonya has in bucketloads and as a committee we have full confidence in her ability to deliver anything she promises and more. The position has definitely been a challenging one as rowing is often a victim of it's own success and with that comes a lot of parental and coach aspiration and demands. That is great but challenging at the same time and through all this Sonya always has a smile and looks for the positive. She will be a huge loss to our organization. Bruce Tong (Wentworth Principal) expressed that Sonya's understanding and contribution to the NZ Rowing Community has been superb, her own school and club rowing combined with her roles in RNZ has culminated in Sonya having an indepth understanding of our sport. She has been a real asset and will be missed.
    Finally the constant threat still lingers in our current world with covid but we need to be grateful for the opportunity we are all going to get this week and to make every moment count. So lets look forward to a fantastic six days of racing. Many hours go into planning and the running the regatta and on behalf of the NZSSRA I would like to thank our hosts KRI and wish all our athletes all the very best.
  6. Correspondence
    Correspondence with Ministry of Health, Waikato District Health Board, MBIE Major Events, School Sport NZ, and Sport NZ in relation to Covid-19 and events.
    Received communication from Sean Durkin in relation to the Rowing NZ Rules of Racing.
    NZSSRA has a vote at the NZRA AGM and we encourage all schools to make contact with me around any feedback on these rules.
  7. Minutes of Previous AGM
    The Minutes of the 2019 AGM had been made available online. There were no minutes for the 2020 AGM because due to covid 19 no members were able to attend therefore a quorum was not reached. As per standard practice for NZSSRA business is carried over to the following general meeting and dealt with here.

    Moved that the draft previous minutes be accepted as a true and correct record.
    Moved: Wanganui Collegiate Second: Marian College
    Carried Unanimously
  8. Finance Reports
    1. 2019
      Was a reasonably standard year in terms of expenses other than the contribution towards the webcasting. Other expenses were standard for association. Cost of NZRA AGM were for delegates and volunteer of the year to attend and its level was therefore dependant on where it was and where they came from.
    2. 2020
      Had many differences due to Covid-19. The NZRA AGM expenses are non existent as this was not held in person due to covid 19. Naming rights were not given as the Aon Maadi Cup was not held. And the Webcast cost was not paid for as Rowing NZ was able to work with the provider and received a full refund on the deposit.

      Due to the uncertainty surrounding events the membership fees for 2021 have not yet been charged, and the NZSSRA Board are not able to prepare an adequate budget to present to members at this time. A budget will be confirmed and prepared as soon as possible post this 2021 AGM.

      We have had suggestions from members that the SISS/NISS medals be given out to those top South and North crew placed from Maadi results. In order to do this the medals would need to be purchased and the Board is willing to commit to should schools want to see the champions identified and these be given out accordingly at this regatta. Note that this would happen if logistically possible (ie get the medals here) and would be at a separate location to the Maadi presentations dais. We have had mixed feedback on this area so are seeking direction from members now.

      Members were asked if they would like to see this happen - the majority of members present agreed the SI/NI medals should be awarded - 3 were against. This would therefore be actioned (subject to logistics).

      Moved that the financial reports from 2019 and 2020 be accepted:
      Moved: St Margaret's College Second: Christs College
      Carried unanimously.
  9. Report on business carried out by the Schools Committee during the past 2 years.
    Sonya presented the 2 year report as stated in the agenda.
    No questions or comments were received.

    Moved that the reports from 2019 and 2020 be accepted:
    Moved: Otago Girls High School Second: Christs College
    Carried unanimously.
  10. Membership Fee
    The fee was $160 per school per year (set in 2018 after members removed the discount). As part of its four-yearly review before the 2020 AGM the Schools Committee were recommending the fee remained at the $160 level. The NZSSRA Board however, noted an inflation-linked adjustment from 2016 would be an increase of $10 to $170.

    Due to Covid-19 impacts cancelling the 2020 Aon Maadi Cup, the Schools Committee members felt that schools did not receive the webcasting service which is what the majority of the membership fee covers and Rowing NZ was able to negotiate a refund. The NZSSRA Board however noted many items had been cut from the budget in recent years to reach a point where membership fees fully covered the webcast.
    Sonya Sonya confirmed however that Rowing NZ are still comfortable with paying for the remaining portion of the webcast.

    As webcasting is a significant cost the Schools Committee would like to know whether members still agree that the webcast should be paid for by NZSSRA because all members benefit by having access to it.
    An invoice to all member schools can be expected for the membership fee post this event.
  11. Election of Officers
    1. Life membership
      Trudy Keys - nominated by St Margret's College Trudy is Head of our Creative Technologies faculty, a full-time Teacher and our Rowing Manager at St Margaret's College. She has been involved in NZSSRA for a long time and as you will be aware ended her tenure as President in 2019. Trudy's desire to encourage our younger generation to enjoy a love of rowing and embrace the commitment that it entails is a testament to her dedication and passion for rowing. Trudy is extremely generous of her time and expertise, both for St Margaret's rowing and the national Secondary Schools programme. Over her time, she has most certainly rendered distinguished and conspicuous service to the sport of rowing in Secondary Schools and we believe she is a worthy candidate for Life membership.
      This nomination is endorsed by the Schools Committee - Elected by Acclimation
    2. Extraordinary vacancy
      The Schools Committee advise that due to the 2020 appointments not taking place Lauren Farnden (who's term was up in 2020) was appointed by the Schools Committee under Article 10.7 to fill the extraordinary vacancy until the 2021 AGM.
    3. Elected member
      There are two positions up for election. Because there are two vacancies, one is for a three- year term, and the other is for a one-year term.

      Scott Wilson is retiring by rotation and is not re-standing. The Schools Committee thanks Scott for his time, energy and commitment he has given the committee.
      Members gave a round of applause to thank Scott for his work.

      Nominations for the two elected positions were received from:
      Lauren Farnden from St Hildas Collegiate (re-standing) - 1 Year
      Mark Cotham from Rangi Ruru Girls School - 3 Year
      As we had two candidates and Lauren has nominated for the one year position both positions were elected by acclimation.

      Carried by acclimation
    4. Ratification of Appointment
      Richard Dykes, Principal Nelson College has been re-appointed to the Schools Committee by the NZSSRA Board. The appointment is subject to ratification by Members.

      Mover that this appointment be ratified: Trudy Keys Seconded: Nelson Girls College
      Carried by acclimation
  12. Championship Regattas
    1. 2022 Fee Change Proposal for Championship regattas (fees excl GST). Please note that, because the 2020 AGM did not go ahead, the existing fees for NISSC and SISSC were last set in 2019 for the 2020 regattas. The proposed 2020 AGM increases for the 2021 regattas could not be implemented. Similarly, the proposed fees for Maadi 2021 could not be implemented, so the fees were those last set in 2019, for a Ruataniwha Maadi. This year's proposal are therefore the first update in two years:
      1. 2022 North Island Secondary School Championships Changes:
        All boat prices have increased by $2 and amenity fee by $4. An Illegal entry fee of $50 introduced.
      2. 2022 South Island Secondary School Championships Changes:
        Singles have increased by $1 and the amenity fee has increased by $1
      3. 2022 New Zealand Secondary School Championships Changes:
        All boats except eights have increased by $1 and amenity fee by $2

      Terry Tidbury from Karapiro Rowing confirmed that the Illegal crew change was the same as the non-notified crew change, not something new introduced but just a terminology change. Terry also commented that KRI have to hire this venue to run the regatta and there has been an increase in hire fee by Waipa District Council which is why there is an increase in amenity fees. KRI generates revenue by working for other events, such as canoe and waka ama and KRI use this revenue to subsidise the fees. Also use this revenue to cover salaries.

      Moved: Scots College Seconded: Whakatane High School
      Carried with one against

      Table of fees
      Fees Maadi 2022 (Ruataniwha) NISSC 2022 SISSC 2022
      Singles $29 $21 $18
      Doubles/Pairs $38 $23 $20
      Fours/Quads $50 $31 $30
      Eights/Octuples $68 $38 $44
      Amenity $32 $28 $25
      Other fees Maadi 2022 (Ruataniwha) NISSC 2022 SISSC 2022
      Entry Protest
      incl GST**
      $20 $20 $20
      Non-notified Crew Change $50 $50 $50
      Late Scratching $40 $40 $40
      Non-progression $150* $150* $100*
      Race Protest
      incl GST**
      $20 $20 $20
      Appeal $20 $20 $20
      Non-notified Crew Change $50 $50 $50
      Did Not Start
      (Non-notified scratching)
      $60 $60 $50
      Tent Fee (front) N/A $160 N/A
      Tent Fee (rear) N/A $130 N/A
      Tent Power N/A $130 N/A
      * No late scratching fee will apply for non-progression
      ** per the NZ Secondary Schools of Racing
    2. Applications to host Championships regattas - Note School Sport NZ has not yet confirmed dates for Summer Tournament Week 2023 (due in May). This means dates for 2023 regattas may need to be adjusted, if the anticipated dates are incorrect.
      1. From Karapiro Rowing to host the 2022 and 2023 North Island Secondary School Championships regattas
      2. From South Island Rowing to host the 2022 South Island Secondary Schools Championships
      3. From South Island Rowing to host the 2022 New Zealand Secondary Schools Championships
      4. From Karapiro Rowing to host the 2023 New Zealand Secondary Schools Championships
      Mover that all host applications be accepted: Whanganui Collegiate Seconded: St Mary's Wellington
      Carried Unanimously
  13. Remits
    Carried over from 2020 AGM papers
    • Remit 1: Proposed by the NZSSRA Board
      1. The existing article 9.3 is updated to:
        9.3 The President shall have sole discretion for the appointment of the Board. The President shall appoint four directors, as follows:
         A. The President shall appoint one director each year. Each director will hold office for four years from the date of appointment by the President.
         B. In the event of an extraordinary vacancy among the directors the President shall appoint a replacement director who will hold office for the remainder of the vacated term.
         C. The Board will notify Members within fourteen days of any change to the composition of the Board.
      1. Insert a new 9.3 (and re-number existing clauses accordingly):
        9.3 In the event of an extraordinary vacancy of the presidency, if the next AGM is not due to be held within 6 months then the Schools Committee shall call an SGM with the sole purpose of electing a new President. The SGM shall be held by electronic or postal ballot and the provisions in Article 9.2 that relate to an AGM shall be applied to the SGM; except the three years in Article 9.2.E shall be measured from the AGM that follows the SGM.
      Moved: Wellington Girls College Seconded: St Kentigern College
      Carried with one against, one abstention.

    2021 REMITS

    Due to issues surrounding the timing of the last Covid-19 Alert Level Change these papers were unfortunately not presented with the full 4 weeks' notice period, rather Principals received these with 2 weeks' notice.

    No objections were raised so the remits could be heard.
    • Remit 2: Proposed by Wellington Secondary Schools Rowing Association - U17 Pairs
      That the "BOYS AND GIRLS UNDER 17" list of events in Regulation 6.3 have "Pair oars without coxswain" added to it.
      Bruce Tong - this has been discussed many times over the last few years and has taken place in the exhibition slot. There are many other events that could fit into this exhibition slot rather than filling it with the U17 pair for example a co-ed event or composite we could consider keeping this space for something that changes all the time. The programme is already very full and we can't keep adding events, that is why WENT would be voting against the inclusion.
      Andrew Carr=Smith: Exhibition events can fit in anywhere .
      Bruce reiterated that the programme is already very full and we can't keep adding things.

      Moved: David Carr-Smith Seconded: Hamilton Girls High School
      For: 39 Against: 13
    • Remit 3: Proposed by St Margaret's College, Christ's College, St Peter's School, Cambridge

      That the U18 Girls and Boys have additional coxless Four and Quad events added to the existing programme. Therefore Regulation 6.3 have the following added "Four oars without coxswain" and "Quadruple sculls without coxswain"

      CHCO spoke to the remit - we have seen a big reduction in boys moving through to u18 since the removal of lightweight events. This would be for smaller rowers to give them an opportunity to be competitive in a boat that promotes technical efficiency over horsepower. This also aligns better with the club events since they are coxless.

      WTLB have a number of concerns: pressure on resources such as plant. To have to invest in coxless fours and quads would be difficult to justify. Possibility to share with club but creates confusion at regattas when they are both racing. Limited rack space available at bigger regattas already. Concerns on safety aspect with training - having large coxless boats on congested waterways. Biggest concern is the pressure it would put on the having 56 events. We would expect this upward trajectory of events to continue and it just puts too much pressure on the race programme.

      DIOC: in support of everything WTLB have raised. Need coxswains to train properly and want to keep coxswains in the sport. Want to see more participation in the sport but the way to achieve this would be a second division at U18 rather than slotting other events in.
      EGGS: Would like to thank people for the remit, as are in support of the remit. To row a coxless boat you have to be better, and we want to keep our sport moving and getting better. Paul would like to see a straight swap from coxed fours and quads to coxless fours and quads. Safety aspect on the Tamaki is a challenge anywhere. Look at the options of how we are going to grow the future.
      Terry Tidbury from KRI: As regatta organisers we have to ask for a special extension to go past 6pm. The more events that are added the bigger the challenge.
      WLCO: Suggested this could be added as exhibition event to determine its uptake.
      Philippa Baker-Hogan: Having more coxless boats and answers the struggles to get coxswains, however the issue of adding an event is concerning. It suits her schools however she still would not be supporting the remit.
      John: Stay as status quo
      ASHB: this provides opportunities for our rowers. Safety is a big challenge but no one is forcing schools to enter this, however smaller schools don't have enough people to boat a coxed event.
      CUTH: Globally these events are coxless. We are putting our athletes at a disadvantage by not having a coxless boat. Whole heartedly support this.
      NELB/NELC: suggested an amendment to the remit to clarify its location in the programme -

      "that the coxless four/quad is right next to the respective coxed four/quad on the programme"
      Move the amendment: Nelson College Seconded: Ashburton College
      Amendment Carried with some dissent (2 against)

      Vote for the amended remit - Not Passed (29 for: 23 against)
      Vote for the original remit- Not Passed (24 for: 28 against)
    • Remit 4: Proposal by the Schools Committee - General Meeting
      That in rule 14.3 ", including an SGM," be added to 14.3 and delete "to deal with policy or similar matters". And that in rule 14.6 "an emergency" be deleted and replaced with "necessary". And "in its absolute discretion" be added after Schools Committee.
      So that the article reads as:
      14.3 The Schools Committee and/or the Board may call a General Meeting, including an SGM, at any time.
      14.6 Except where deemed necessary by the Schools Committee in its absolute discretion, proposals for alterations to the Regulations and Rules shall not be received for reference to the AGM or a SGM except in every fourth year (starting 2013).

      Moved: Onslow College Seconded: Bethlehem College
      Carried Unanimously
    • Remit 5: Proposed by the Schools Committee - per pupil limit
      That the ability for Regatta Committees to request a per-pupil limit (any such limit to be subject to approval by the Schools Committee) be added to the Regulations.
      By adding to Regulations 7.2.A "and/or the maximum number of events a rower may enter in an event." And adding to 7.2.B "and/or to one or more classes of rower."
      And adding a new 7.2.D "Any change in limits would be notified to members by 1 December in the season of the regatta, otherwise the previous season limits will prevail."

      WLCO: have a concern that there is no limit outlined.
      Will the limit be across particular events or blanket? Wouldn't have to be a flat limit, it could be targeted.
      DIOC: understand the welfare point however, a compressed schedule can cause more of a welfare point.
      Bruce Tong: remember this is a championship regatta so more than three isn't beneficial. Also if you do have a compressed regatta schools get caught out with athletes racing 4 or 5 events.
      Question from the floor about whether it was per pupil or per rower - Change wording to per rower.
      Sonya confirmed this wouldn't apply to coxswains.
      SHAK: could be beneficial to specify that the only limit that could be implemented is 3 events per rower. Clarify that there would be no limit applied less than 3. Suggested a remit - limit would be 3 or greater events per rower.
      Amendment to the remit: "and/or the maximum 3 or greater number of events a rower may enter in an event.""and/or the maximum number of events a rower may enter in an event, provided that the maximum number of events a rower may enter is three or greater."

      Amendment Moved: SHAK Seconded: WNCS
      Carried with some dissent (1 against)

      Amended remit was put to the vote

      However, upon counting votes and abstentions it was determined we no longer had a quorum (35 for, 13 against, 1 abstained = 49; quorum of 50 required). That meant the item of business could no longer be considered and this along with all further remits would have to be carried over to the next meeting.
  14. Other Matter/Business from the Floor
    1. NZSSRA Volunteer of the Year nominees
      Congratulations to Natalie Matheson, Columba College in 2019 And Chris Williams, Whangarei Girls High School in 2020
      We look forward to receiving your nominees for 2021
    2. Coxless fours and quads - CUTH: thought that NZSSRA should commit to see if this works within racing. It is something that is accepted as normal internationally. Should be an opportunity to see if this works as an exhibition event.
      Andrew Carr-Smith: Noted that the application for exhibition events needs to come from the organising committee. NISS and SISS could look to run it as an exhibition event.
    3. Size of Regattas - WNCS: need to start thinking of a better way to get our regatta sizes down. Gus personally thinks we should make our u15 squad smaller.
      Sonya: other secondary school sports you have to make the top team to go on to the national championships (e.g. Netball is top 12 in whole school). Rowing is extremely unique to allow our youngest and inexperienced athletes to join the national champs. The Schools Committee is interested in hearing the opinion of the of schools - making Maadi a more senior event. NZSSRA can put forward some recommendations on this. Any more suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
      STAN: Guy wants the sport to look at getting rid of the current grading system - Could consider novice, junior and senior instead. Sonya: one idea that has been proposed is ability grade across the board. This is rowed at other regattas throughout the year. If they were graded by ability it could make for better racing and a better racing experience for each individual. She encouraged everyone to watch the difference between the winners and the last place in the heats and ask ourselves what the experience is like for that individual coming so far behind, wouldn't it be better for them to be with like ability.
      Janey: thanks for the ideas and if there are any more please get in contact with Janey.
  15. Date of next AGM
    The date of the next AGM is scheduled 27 March 2022.
Meeting closed at 6:32pm