|VCC and ACAV, together on the sand???
Had an interesting article pop up on my facebook today. Having been out of the loop for ages I'm not sure what is going on but it doesn't sound like fun...
I donít know whatís been happening behind the scenes, but I have been a paid up member of VCC in the past and currently member of ACAV.
ACAV seemed to have been a lot more proactive (maybe louder?) with regards to current access issues/shit fight.
I may be entirely wrong, and perhaps VCC are doing the hard yards, perhaps not as vocally as ACAV but arenít communicating as clearly to wider community.
This is only the limited impression I get. Perhaps ACAV could benefit from VCC relationships with Parks and land managers, and VCC some of the ACAVs legal push and energy.
I wouldn't put any faith in the VCCs "relationships with Parks and land managers". If they had relationships within PV worth mentioning this entire mess in the Grampians would not have blown up the way it has.
The VCC has spectacularly failed to manage access, and now we have widespread climbing bans. The ACAV have yet to prove themselves. Even a small win for ACAV will show them to be more useful than the VCC.
In fairness to VCC, it seems this issue goes beyond what a small committee and single access officer could significantly change the outcome of.
It would seem the underlying issue is the recent change to the Aboriginal Heritage Act, and that blindsided everyone. Doesnít sound like something a handshake or MOU could overrule, which is what has been effective previously.
As I said above though, my (literal) money is with the ACAV, as I think they are actively tackling the issue.
A bet each way is a valid strategy. ACAV has been blasting Parks online and in the press. VCC has been building strong relationships and playing good cop to their bad cop. The profile and history of CliffCare is respected both by Parks and some of the TO groups.
We need to keep these separate, otherwise we just have one bad cop that can't play the good cop when the need arises.
I'm of course privy to a lot more information than I would want to post online. If you're a VCC member you'll get updates via email and Argus.
Worse still is what is being done by the ACAVís Access officer whoís new account on theCrag has been massively editing the Grampians listings re closures... and making it even more confusing as to where it is okay to climb ... all seemingly based on Ďadviceí they have received and no doubt some strange idea that playing politics on theCrag will assist their campaign...
Main change on thecrag is that people are being directed to the PV info page for the most up-to-date information. I don't see that as a bad thing Macca.
While I can see that point, I also note Kieran's comments that thecrag is the 'go to' source (or is trying to be..) so ensuring it's up to date is a good thing.
Notice that the same message appears on crags that are completely unaffected, such as Mt Rosea.
It creates uncertainty and confusion.
Is the "do not add" message intended to appear against all cliffs? Anyone know why?
On 18-Sep-2019 gfdonc wrote:
>Is the "do not add" message intended to appear against all cliffs? Anyone
That was added early on as PV was using stats from the crag to try and support their claim of an explosion of new routes.
On 18-Sep-2019 dan_b wrote:
>In fairness to VCC, it seems this issue goes beyond what a small committee
>and single access officer could significantly change the outcome of.
>It would seem the underlying issue is the recent change to the Aboriginal
>Heritage Act, and that blindsided everyone. Doesnít sound like something
>a handshake or MOU could overrule, which is what has been effective previously.
Good post bro.
VCC access officers (along with SRC et al, equivalents), have for many many years now served us well in a largely unsung and unfunded manner. I respect the huge amount of effort they invested and the support they got.
>As I said above though, my (literal) money is with the ACAV, as I think
>they are actively tackling the issue.
The blindsided comment by dan_b above sums it up. The ground-rules have changed - much like the September 11 twin towers attack changed current world political thinking ...
I've been a paid up member of the VCC for the past nearly 3 years (& was previously for several years in the past). I've gotta say I'm pretty fed up with the club's inertia, not just on the critical access issue, but just about everything. The whole culture of the club seems to be completely stuck in the last century.
Let me preface this by saying I am not associated with the new ACAV body in any way, I'm just wanting to see a good outcome for climbing, plus I'm sick to death of being denigrated by people who've spent most of their career working for very large corporations and appear to have no idea about or concern for the environment whatsoever.
When I rejoined the VCC it was mainly to be generally supportive of the club and cliffcare generally. I wasn't expecting to get too much out of it personally. However last year the club was charging $74 for an individual membership. For what you might ask. Well a quick perusal of the club's accounts from the last AGM suggests about half of my membership fee for the previous year didn't go anywhere.
The club appears to be just squirreling money away for no justified reason - i.e. they could be charging members less than half what they do and still be in the black. Why? The previous year there was an even bigger surplus. I don't seem to have the accounts for years prior to that so I'm not sure how long this has been going on, but the club now has well over $100K hoarded away that was apparently mostly collected from membership fees from just a couple of hundred members. How do they justify this??
Most of the rest of the money appears to have been to support the role of the access / environmental officer. However that person has now quit the position. I accept that was a useful role and a benefit to the climbing community as a whole. No complaints about the person who was doing it, and I understand she'd been doing it for a while so she was of course entitled to relinquish it, but there was obviously no succession plan. Apparently nobody has been filling this role for some months now but we VCC mugs keep paying for it even though it should benefit the whole climbing community.
Now the VCC apparently want to INCREASE membership fees to $88 and this evening I get an email from the current VCC president asking for support to stand again. Huh? As far as I recall, when all the access stuff blew up in the media and climbers were being portrayed as environmental vandals the VCC president was completely MIA. I understand this is a voluntary role (unlike the VCC treasurer who apparently gets a $2400 honorarium - apparently just for putting some basic accounts together) but I really find this a bit rich.
Unfortunately I don't think I'll be able to get along to the VCC AGM next week, but I really hope something changes as it's pretty obvious to me the VCC is an outfit now in serious and very overdue need of significant reform.
I've tried to stay quiet on most of this, but between managing the charity fund, the support trust for the charity, VCC accounts directly, employees, grants, accounting which money from which grant was spent on which project, super, BAS, PAYE, maintaining the appropriate government reporting, balancing between the organisations, stock control, ordering, invoicing councils, rectifying errors when other people pay all the money innto the wrong accounts, stocktakes, processing memberships, reconciling that the membership processing was correct... etc. The accounts are far from basic.
I estimate it takes about 3-5 hours a week, plus an additional 3-5 hours end of month, plus an additional 10-15 hours a quarter, plus and additional 20-40 hours or so for EOFY, plus additional time to make sure one off requirements are met (e.g. AUSKey is being decommissioned, how are we going to handle that? Or long service leave calculations for an employee of 11 years, etc). Even at the lowest estimates there, it's less than $10 an hour.
I no longer have the time or the energy to give the organisation the effort it needs so I've resigned and you're more than welcome to take the books on.
On 19-Sep-2019 Crepuscular wrote:
>The club appears to be just squirreling money away for no justified reason
>- i.e. they could be charging members less than half what they do and still
>be in the black.
Not really. There are plenty of expenses and the financial reports will be presented at the AGM. E.g. the Access and Environment Officer role is a paid position, there are the bouldering walls to take care of (three of them) or the recent Access Is No Accident campaign.
> Why? The previous year there was an even bigger surplus.
>I don't seem to have the accounts for years prior to that so I'm not sure
>how long this has been going on, but the club now has well over $100K hoarded
>away that was apparently mostly collected from membership fees from just
>a couple of hundred members. How do they justify this??
It's not 100k but it is substantial. The plan is to make the AE Officer a FTE. In the current situation that seems to be an obvious choice.
>Most of the rest of the money appears to have been to support the role
>of the access / environmental officer. However that person has now quit
>the position. I accept that was a useful role and a benefit to the climbing
>community as a whole. No complaints about the person who was doing it,
>and I understand she'd been doing it for a while so she was of course entitled
>to relinquish it, but there was obviously no succession plan. Apparently
>nobody has been filling this role for some months now but we VCC mugs keep
>paying for it even though it should benefit the whole climbing community.
There are negotiations in place to make the AE role a joint role across several organisations. That hasn't been finalised yet.
>Now the VCC apparently want to INCREASE membership fees to $88
Not really. The membership fee increases to $88 if the members to decide to affiliate with the ACAV, otherwise it's $78
>As far as I recall, when all the access stuff blew
>up in the media and climbers were being portrayed as environmental vandals
>the VCC president was completely MIA.
It was a shit-fight sparked by Mike Tomkins. There was nothing to win. The recent Triple J piece was much better and there the VCC got involved.
>Unfortunately I don't think I'll be able to get along to the VCC AGM next
>week, but I really hope something changes as it's pretty obvious to me
>the VCC is an outfit now in serious and very overdue need of significant
What needs to change in your eyes? The communication to the members? There's definitely room for improvement.
Philip, You show no respect to the title of vice president by denigrating your colleagues on an public forum. We must all work together on this.
Philipp instead of continuing to have it in for Mike and ACAV, where was the VCC president when the bans blindsided the climbing community?
How about answering the question? Very valid point given back then it was the voice of climbing in Victoria.
On 20-Sep-2019 dalai wrote:
>Philipp instead of continuing to have it in for Mike and ACAV, where was
>the VCC president when the bans blindsided the climbing community?
So I'm not allow to criticise anyone whose action have a negative impact on regaining access? Ok, cool.
>How about answering the question?
How about you ask Paula directly. This way you'll get the most informative answer
Time out guy's.
I'm a numpty that's enjoyed climbing at Araps and Gramps since the early 90's but I've never joined a climbing club or organisation. Always meant to but never got around to it. I live close to both area's and have no shortage of people to climb with, its never been a real need for me to join a club but with what has happened I really would like to sign up and add some funds and whatever else is needed to the cause. Can someone tell me where my money will be best spent... As a community we really need to stand together as I think these bans may well increase to other area's.
On 20-Sep-2019 mountaineer wrote:
>On 20-Sep-2019 dalai wrote:
>>Philipp instead of continuing to have it in for Mike and ACAV, where
>>the VCC president when the bans blindsided the climbing community?
>So I'm not allow to criticise anyone whose action have a negative impact
>on regaining access? Ok, cool.
Not when accusations aren't backed up with facts! Let's hear facts for a change rather than continue with your deflection and emotive unfounded rubbish. Your blog suggesting a hostile takeover has to be your magnum opus! How is it a hostile takeover when VCC members stand for positions through open voting at the AGM next week?
Explain how the ACAV and especially Mike have negatively impacted climbing access? PV slander climbers with bolts in rock art (one example) and nothing but crickets chirping from the VCC!!! The ACAV have been the only group trying to change public opinion after an onslaught of PV mud slinging.
You continue to be more concerned about your fiefdom and currently using your blog and FB to throw continued accusations with nothing to back it up. Not the behaviour of someone who is the current Vice President of the VCC! You shouldn't be representing climbers and definitely don't want you representing me. Do you even climb in the Grampians?
On 20-Sep-2019 salty crag wrote:
>Time out guy's.
Sorry salty crag, but right now we have to stand up and make noise to remove people such as Philipp from representing climbers. If you have had the misfortune of seeing Philipps posts on various FB groups, you will see he is the one most disruptive when it is imperative we are united and fight for access.
On 20-Sep-2019 mountaineer wrote:
>>As far as I recall, when all the access stuff blew
>>up in the media and climbers were being portrayed as environmental vandals
>>the VCC president was completely MIA.
>It was a shit-fight sparked by Mike Tomkins. There was nothing to win.
>The recent Triple J piece was much better and there the VCC got involved.
I don't agree Phillipp - after months of media silence from the VCC this was what your President first said on national radio:
Paula Toal - "Climbers in ignorance have gone into places where we have done harm. That really upsets me."
Journo - "Did any of you, before this year, have any understanding of the cultural heritage of this place?"
Paula Toal - "No, i wasn't personally aware"
Mark Gould - "I experienced complete surprise in the beginning, gone through some sort of confusion, into anger and now I'm feeling, probably the strongest feeling is a sense of almost guilt and shame"
This is from the group who climbers invested in to lobby for and protect climbers rights. You are supposed to be the spokespeople for the climbing community. That's the gig like it or not. There was a chance to correct the record and project a positive spin but instead all we got was ignorance, guilt and shame. Guilty as charged your honor. We are sinners and let us take the punishment required. World's biggest bans was well deserved clearly. This is why so many climbers are upset with the VCC - including at that infamous Town Hall meeting. It's even more disturbing to hear that Paula said she was totally ignorant of the cultural heritage of the Grampians. That wasn't a good look and made me wonder just how much experience she had of the Grampians.