2018 General Meeting Minutes

Held at the YMCA Recreation Camp in Anglesea on Sunday, 7 October 2018, commencing at 7.30pm.

  1. Opening and welcome

 ANN Steering Committee Chair Jeff Campbell opened the meeting and welcomed those present.

  • Attendance and apologies

64 naturalists signed the attendance sheet, drawn from the following member clubs:

Bairnsdale FNC (1)     Dubbo FN&CS (2)Stanthorpe FNC (2)  
Ballarat FNC (5)Hamilton FNC (2)FNC Victoria (4)
Bendigo FNC (1)Kentish/Central North FN (3)WA Naturalists Club (16)
Burnie FNC (1)Latrobe Valley FNC (2)Warrnambool FNC (2)
FNA Canberra (4)Launceston FNC (6)Non-members (via SEANA) (2)
Castlemaine FNC (2)Portland FNC (2) 
Chinchilla FNC (4)Queensland NC/ Fassifern (3) 

Clubs represented at ANN2018 but not at this meeting: Sale & District FNC, Tasmanian FNC.

Apologies: Rosalie Breen, Edward & Hazel Brentnall, Ruby & Bill Johnson, Rosalind & John Steel, Denis & Elizabeth Thurgood.

  • Minutes of the previous general meeting

The minutes of the general meeting held in Perth on 6 October, 2016 and previously circulated were confirmed. (Moved Eddie Dell, seconded Don Poynton)

  • Business arising from the minutes

Item 5.4 from the 2016 meeting: There was identified a need to increase the availability of seeding funds to assist host clubs to cover advance payments such as venue deposits. The secretary reported that the WA Naturalists Club had generously donated $6,000 for this purpose, being part of the surplus realised from ANN2016.

       5.     Reports

                5.1          2016 Get-Together

The secretary Phil Rayment noted that the 2016 Get-Together, hosted by the Western Australian Naturalists Club in Perth, had been highly successful in terms of the quality and organisation of the main program and the pre- and post- tours. A formal motion of thanks had been passed at the Perth general meeting. A healthy surplus was realised – see Item 4 above.

                5.2          ANN Web-master

Robert Read commented that the site at www.australiannaturalistsnetwork.wordpress.com needs more material and invited contributions such as reports and photos from this and earlier get-togethers. These may be emailed to Robert at hydrogeologist@westnet.com.au . If needed for sending large files such as photo sets, it may be better to use Dropbox.

                5.3          ANN register Coordinator

John Gregurke requested member clubs to keep him informed of any updates to club details included in the register.

                5.4          ANN Camp account

Phil Rayment reminded those present that the current practice is that the SEANA Treasurer looks after the ANN Camp Account and Term Deposit. Geoff Lay has recently taken over from Denis Thurgood as SEANA Treasurer and has yet to gain access to the account transaction details.

Phil reported that the ANN Camp Account balance as at 13 January 2017 was $8,916.00, which included the refund of $2,000.00 seeding funds for ANN2016 and the donation of $6,000.00 from the surplus from that get-together. The current balance of the ANN share of the term deposit shared with SEANA is $4,385.12. (The ANN share of the term deposit which matures on 22/10/2018 is 80%.)

                5.5          Chairperson’s thanks

Jeff Campbell thanked the ANN Steering Committee members for 2016-2018 including secretary Phil Rayment for their contributions.

  • Election of Steering Committee office bearers and ordinary members for 2018-2020

Peter Dalman (FNC Ballarat) took the chair for the election of members of the Steering Committee for 2018-2020. He declared all positions vacant and thanked Jeff Campbell and the other members of the 2016-2018 committee for their work.

Chairperson: Nominated: Geoff Lay (FNC Victoria), moved Jannie Lay, seconded Clare Dalman and declared elected.

Secretary: Nominated: Phil Rayment (Latrobe Valley FNC), moved Jeff Campbell, seconded Jannie Lay and declared elected.

Webmaster: Nominated: Robert Read (Kentish/Central North FN), moved Phil Rayment, seconded Eddie Dell and declared elected.

Register Coordinator: Nominated: John Gregurke (FNC Ballarat), moved Jeff Campbell, seconded Frank Truscott and declared elected.

Ordinary members:

Nominated: Eddie Dell (WA NC), moved John Gregurke, seconded Don Poynton and declared elected.

Nominated: Pam Ghirardi (WA NC), moved Phil Rayment, seconded Kath Truscott and declared elected.

Nominated: Jeff Campbell (Stanthorpe FNC), moved Kath Truscott, seconded Pam Ghirardi and declared elected.

         7.  General business

                7.1          Planning for 2020 ANN Get-Together

Offers to host the 2020 Get-Together had been sought from ANN member clubs or groups of clubs from an individual state/territory or region in the lead-up to ANN2018.

Jeff Campbell announced an offer by the Stanthorpe FNC to host ANN2020, which was accepted with acclamation. It is planned to hold the event in mid to late September, possibly based at the Stanthorpe Showgrounds with participants arranging their own accommodation. Jeff outlined some of the attractions of the region, including a number of National Parks and State Forests. He identified a new book, Flora of the Granite Belt, published by the Stanthorpe Rare Wildflower Consortium, as a useful reference.

                7.2          Motion of thanks to SEANA and its organising subcommittee for hosting ANN 2018

Pam Ghirardi moved a vote of thanks to SEANA and its organising subcommittee for hosting a highly successful ANN2018 with informative excursions and speakers and well organised accommodation, catering, transport and supplied information including the handbook. In doing so, Pam noted the great work of subcommittee members – convenor John Gregurke, treasurer Geoff Harris, Geraldine Harris and Joan Pitaro, who had the support of Elaine Gregurke, Nick Pitaro, Peter and Clare Dalman, Val Hocking and others. Thanks also to Geoff Lay for compiling the extensive collection of natural history photos screened across most evenings.

                7.3          Any other business

                7.3.1      Feedback re format for future get-togethers

                Points raised in discussion:

* Multiple locations are certainly acceptable where appropriate, but one-night stays should be minimised (sometimes unavoidable).

* There was general satisfaction with a 9-10 days duration across two weekends and the weekdays between.               

* John Gregurke suggested participants email any helpful comments to Stanthorpe to assist with planning for ANN2020.

* Pre- and post- tours are certainly not expected as part of Get-Togethers, but may be welcomed depending on location/region.

* Perhaps not have a guest expert speaker on the first and last nights, and use the last night (after dinner) informally for e.g. screening photos taken by participants during the current ANN. The general meeting could preferably be held on another evening towards the end of the program.

* A half-day break around the middle of the program is very welcome, preferably with some suggestions for walks near the accommodation.

* Suggested possible locations for Get-Togethers beyond 2020 include Kangaroo Island (SA), Alice Springs and a region in NSW.

7.3.2      Advocacy role for ANN

Margaret McDonald (Dubbo FN&CS) spoke in favour of ANN taking up an advocacy role when appropriate for environmental and conservation issues relating to the whole nation or broad regions of it. Phil Rayment noted that this is certainly within the remit of the statement of purposes of the ANN. Margaret then addressed the serious matter of the management of the Murray-Darling Basin, with problems exacerbated by the recent extended drought.

Following discussion, the following motions were put and carried:

Motion 1: That a letter be written to the Federal Environment Minister and Shadow Minister requesting details of their policies for the future of the Murray-Darling Basin Plan and the desperately needed remediation of the Murray-Darling Basin river systems. (Moved Margaret McDonald, seconded Kath Truscott)

Motion 2: That the responses be emailed to all ANN member clubs with a request that their individual members receive a copy. (Moved Margaret McDonald, seconded Kath Truscott)

         8.  Next meeting   

The next general meeting will be held during the 2020 Get-Together (venue and date to be advised).

Phil Rayment, Secretary, ANN Steering Committee

e-mail: philrayment@dcsi.net.au , phone 03 5174 1730(H), 0499 028 477(M)

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