FLORIDA STATE BEEKEEPERS ASSOCIATION
BOARD OF MANAGERS MEETING
May 17, 2003
High Springs , FL.
Home of Jerry Latner, High Springs, meeting convened 10:20 a.m.
Bert Kelley discussed the subject to the lawsuit brought by Mr. Arndt against both the American Bee Journal and the Florida State Beekeeper’s Association for publishing information detrimental to sale of his vinegar machine for mite control. A lawyer has been retained and he has motioned for dismissal. The case is based on ABJ publishing an article and the Florida State Beekeepers referring to the article. The statements made were not considered detrimental to the sale of the machine according to the Association or ABJ; they stated only that more research was necessary or data needed. The folks at ABJ are not concerned according to Jerry Latner. It was discussed that this might be considered a “frivolous lawsuit,” and counter suing was an option, however, at present we are waiting on a decision by a judge. There was discussion about how much the Association had pledged for a lawyer. Bert Kelley indicated that his fee was at present unknown, but was not expected to be much. Jerry Latner said he and Dadant were trading the lawyer’s services of a supply of wax foundation for his colonies.
Elmore Herman brought to the Board’s attention that he had asked Dr. Malcolm T. Sanford to serve as executive secretary. Dr. Sanford had proposed an annual sum of $2300 to do the job. At the meeting, John Westervelt made a motion to hire Dr. Sanford for that sum; seconded by Bert Kelley. Passed unanimously.
Dr. Sanford discussed the publishing of the May 2003 Florida State Beekeeper Association Newsletter. Total cost as $203, although no receipt had yet been received from The Mail Room, the facility that it was mailed from. Those present indicated they received their newsletter, although Dr. Sanford reported he did not get his. The issue of the newsletter was printed for free by the Florida Farm Bureau (thanks to Carolee Howe). Dr. Sanford and Carolee are going to see what a schedule might look like for future issues.
Soliciting for advertising was taken over by Gary Ranker (941-723-2337) at the state meeting last fall. He was sent the advertising schedule by Carol Russell; Elmore Herman has one too. Elmore will send the schedule to Dr. Sanford who will get with Gary and see about soliciting advertising. It was brought up that in the past advertising revenues paid for the printing and mailing of the newsletter. The executive secretary called Gary May 27, 2003; he is in the process of sending out a letter to advertisers. For business-card ads, he will be asking $25.00 (4 mailings and the convention program). He will also be promoting a business card supplement to the program, which will be available for $10.00.
Dr. Sanford reported he was trying to get information from both Doc Bullard and Bill Overman concerning the electronic services they are providing Florida beekeepers. Doc was going to look into setting up an electronic list for the state association; Bill was being asked to provide some graphics for the Florida Farm Bureau’s graphics person who is putting together a template for further newsletters to be printed on. After a couple of e-mails, no replies to Dr. Sanford are yet forthcoming. He will continue to contact them. Bill Overman contacted May 27, 2003; he has no special graphics; we are looking into hosting the site from earthlink.net. More later on this.
Carolee Howe gave a report on legislative activities. The legislature is in its last days of deliberation. It appears the Florida Apiary Inspection Service will not be cut this fiscal year; it will be reinstated and also with no increase in fees. There was discussion that beekeeper’s testimony was essential in this and that the honey and other items carried by President Herman to legislative day made an impact.
Carolee said one of the things that will continue to be problematic with the legislature is term limits, which mean that every so often legislators will have to be re-educated. She suggested writing a letter of appreciation to the senators and others responsible for keeping the inspection service as part of the budget. A letter to Carolee’s boss will also be written concerning her support of the Association as well as one to Jeff Pettis at the Beltsville Lab for his letter of support.
Discussion of Conrad Cramer’s passing followed. His memorial service was attended by many. The whereabouts of the Association’s beehives remains unknown. Presumably they (60 colonies) were interspersed in Conrad’s operation, control of which passed to a David Webb on his death. Jerry Latner said he would call Mr. Webb to discuss the whereabouts of the colonies and whether he would be interested in continuing to run them. Jerry called and reminded May 27, 2003. If not, there has yet to be anyone who has offered to take control of these colonies. The same is true for those in the panhandle (16 colonies).
President Herman will appoint a committee to handle the state association’s apiaries, which have been a constant source of income over the years under Conrad Cramer’s management. Dr. Sanford moved that the association’s hives in total be named the “Conrad Cramer Memorial Apiary” in honor of the commitment Conrad Cramer showed for so many years in their management.
President Herman will convene a bylaws committee to look at both the association’s apiary administration and the situation regarding life membership. There was discussion that life membership may have to be rethought considering the changes that have occurred over the last few years. Life members pay no dues; the colonies they donated are supposed to generate those dues, but if they don’t, what should be a course of action consistent with the life membership intent?
President Herman said the state beekeepers convention is scheduled for Tampa October 30 and 31, 2003. He will soon decide on the venue. The meeting was scheduled so as not to conflict with either that of Alabama or Georgia (October 17 and 18, 2003). Dr. Sanford will be getting up the program. Suggestions include Glenn Hall, Oscar Coindreau, Patti Elzen, Keith Delaplane, Charles Bronson, Mike Martin, other politicians (head of the senate or house ag committee), Dr. Tumlinson’s group on small hive beetle (studies now going on at High Springs). The meeting schedule will be the same as in past meetings: inspector training on pesticide application Thursday, fish fry on Thursday night, program on Friday, banquet Friday night, business meeting Saturday morning.
Bert Kelley gave a treasurer’s report: currently on hand $8,404.18. Discussion of L. Cutts contribution of $10,000 to save the position occupied by Alonso Suazo (SHB with Dr. Tumlinson). Since Alonso did not take the position, the money remains in Dr. Hall’s account. He is not in a position to return it to Mr. Cutts. Thus, those present committed to paying Mr. Cutts over the following year on a schedule yet to be set. One possibility suggested was that Mr. Cutts take over the Conrad Cramer Memorial Apiary and slowly recoup his money in that manner by taking all he proceeds. Other fund raising opportunities were discussed, including those surrounding state fair activities. Last year, the Association was located right in the middle of the ag exhibit.
Laurence Cutts indicated he was probably going to retire in August after funding for the apiary inspection service was ensured and if he could be assured some one would replace him at the Division of Plant Industry.
Laurence Cutts described the current situation with respect to AHB finds reported in the press in Jacksonville, Miami and Ft. Myers. These bees are only African based on mitochondrial DNA, not on morphometrics nor behavior. They are thus not and will not be declared Africanized and are not a regulatory concern at the moment. Identification will continue to be done in Gainesville at DPI even though the official identification has been moved from Beltsville to Tucson.
Next Board of Managers…August 2, 2003 in Tampa
Meeting adjourned 12:31 p.m.