If you pay a subscription, you want to know where your hard earned money goes.
Roughly half goes into the production and printing of NABO News, the cost of which is also partially offset by a small amount of advertising (currently from Midland Chandlers). NABO News is our largest cost but it is also our greatest asset and you tell us you want us to keep on printing it rather than having it available solely online. Some members do chose to download on line which is a saving, but this is only a minority.,
A sixth goes on the cost of meetings – AGM, Council Meetings and meetings with other organisations including CRT, BSS and others. This can include travel and motoring expenses (at a very reasonable 20p per mile!), catering and any necessary paperwork. This is very important work. If we are not there, then we have no influence.
Another sixth goes on administration in its various guises: web site maintenance, accounting software, PayPal transaction charges on membership fees received in this way, stationery, postage, audit fee or honorarium, etc. In future we are hoping to reduce some of these costs by, for example, sending out membership renewal notices by email rather than by post. We do not currently pay for administration as this is done by members who give their time to stuff envelopes and do the chasing. Can you help?
From time to time we seek legal advice on matters concerning, in particular, the interpretation of CRT’s terms and conditions, in order to be able to challenge navigation authorities against the imposition of unlawful and unnecessary regulations. The cost of this varies from year to year but we budget for an expenditure of around £2,000 per annum and currently have reserves to fund further legal bills.
Added to this are other costs, including insurance and depreciation, making up the final sixth.
At the beginning of each financial year (1st April) we set a budget and this is reviewed by Council on a quarterly basis to ensure that we remain in the black, make any necessary adjustments to our expenditure, and maintain our reserves for any large expenditure (most likely to be fees for legal advice). Annual accounts are audited before being presented at the AGM in November.
What can you do to help? Part of our costs are 'per member', and as least half are 'fixed' regardless of membership, so easy, recruit more members! Like so many other organisations, our membership is static but the last thing we want to do is increase subscription rates. The more members, the fixed costs are spread over a wide population and we can hold subscriptions at the current level. (Last increased in 2013). And the more influence we carry, which is the whole point.