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November 17th, 2005

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SAGA membership fees for 2006

The SAGA membership fee structure for 2006 has been finalised. Fees for 2006, which are payable before the start of the year, are as follows:

Scholars: R20 (primary and secondary school pupils)
Students: R35 (full-time tertiary students)
Others: R80

First-time members in 2006, who pay the full membership rate (i.e. not scholar or student rates), qualify for a free copy of an introductory Go book. Note that anyone can apply to SAGA for a reduced fee if they feel they cannot afford the current rates. Arrangement for payments are to be made to the Treasurer of SAGA (Sakkie Buys is currently handling the duties of Treasurer), unless your club uses some other mechanism to gather SAGA fees for its members.

If current SAGA members’ fees for 2006 are not paid by 31 December 2005, their membership lapses immediately, due to the changes made to the constitution at the last AGM.

Posted by Steve in News, SAGA

17 Comments »

This entry was posted on Thursday, November 17th, 2005 at 10:47 am and is filed under News, SAGA. You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

17 Responses to “SAGA membership fees for 2006”

  1. Chris says:

    As someone who joined (for the first time) as part of the entry for the 2005 western cape open, how do I go about obtaining my introductory book?

  2. Steve says:

    Mainly by waiting.

    The shipment containing the books is apparently on its way, but there have been problems with both the South African post office returning the shipment to Japan, and with the Japanese postal service rejecting the package. Hopefully it should get here the next time without any problems.

  3. Steve says:

    Stellenbosch club members can give the money for their SAGA fees to me in the next 2 weeks. I will collect the money and make a single payment to SAGA with everyone’s fees.

  4. tristen says:

    Is it just me, or does R80 seem a bit high?

  5. Chris says:

    According to the 2004 statements, membership fees amounted to R1830. I don’t know what the precise fee was, but that suggests less than 30 people subscribed.

    Despite this very small subscription, SAGA still made a profit of about R8000. A mere R600 was disbursed to the regions.

    These are puzzling numbers.

    In addition, information about SAGA’s intentions with the subscription fees remain elusive. R80 is neither large nor small without any context. If it merely entitles one to play in SAGA approved tournaments, it seems too high.

    If on the other hand it is intended to result in the growth of the game in the country (for instance, subsidising Aketa-sensei and any iniatives he may set up) or tangible benefits for club members (equipment, facilities, etc), then its perhaps reasonable.

    But this information does not appear to be readily available.

  6. konrad says:

    If you have specific questions, please pose them either on the SAGA mailing list or privately to the SAGA treasurer, Sakkie Buys. SAGA certainly does not intend for such information to be unavailable. As for the points you mention:

    I don’t have the statements in front of me, but I suspect the large profit in 2004 was due to the unexpected donation from the Nihon Ki-in following the success of the African Oza tournament that year.

    The amount disbursed to the regions is capped at a fixed percentage of membership fees, as specified by the constitution.

    That the income of SAGA is intended for use towards growth of the game in South Africa goes without saying: anything else would be contrary to the mission statement of SAGA, which you can find in the constitution. This is indeed why SAGA decided to subsidise the coming visit of Aketa Katsuyuki, even if it is likely to mean making a loss in the 2005 and 2006 financial years. In general, we strive to follow good accounting practise, which includes trying to avoid making a loss in any given year.

  7. Steve says:

    Surely capped is not the right word here, since the consitution specifies a lower limit of 40%, but no upper limit, for regional allocations.

  8. Chris says:

    No criticism intended. Of course it takes time and effort to make information available, which for volunteer organisations may be in short supply. But mailing lists are not really ideal – a summary of the designs SAGA has for the subscriptions it requests from its members could be made available on the internet somwhere, surely?

    Laudably, SAGA has provided its financial statements online – some insight into the figures would have been nice, but I accept that queries regarding them should probably been made offline.

  9. konrad says:

    Any criticism is welcome – SAGA belongs to its membership, and we need the members to make themselves heard.

    40% of R1830 is R732, so R600 seems to be too low. I’ll ask Sakkie about that.

    As for a summary of SAGA’s “designs” (more commonly called a budget 🙂 ) – the 2005 budget is available (maybe Steve can put it up); the 2006 budget is not yet available, but will be along similar lines.

  10. Steve says:

    I’d be happy to put it up, but where is it available?

  11. tristen says:

    For an organisation of its size, SAGA is actually cash-rich with a range of investments. There is a line of thinking that SAGA shouldn’t be siting on such a pile, that it always be in the state of having more potential expenses than its income.

  12. konrad says:

    That is true – due to the conservative financial approach that SAGA has taken since its inception, the current financial situation is comfortable. The line of thinking cited by Tristen (basically that SAGA should aim at making a small loss each year in order to decrease the capital it has built up) has not been popular and is not currently under serious consideration.

    As I said, SAGA belongs to its membership so if members feel that we _should_ be spending our capital they should put such a proposal on the table…

  13. Steve says:

    The budget is up – see this post.

  14. Steve says:

    Just to clarify something about the financial statements. SAGA is, perhaps, cash-rich as Tristen points out, but a large proportion of that cash consists of donations to SAGA for specified objectives, particularly development of Go in previously disadvantaged communities. While SAGA may use the interest on this portion for regular expenses, the capital is only available for the purpose for which it was donated. In fact, this interest seems to be the only factor keeping SAGA from a substantial loss in some years.

    By analysing the figures, it seems to me that almost all of SAGA’s non-dedicated capital is dedicated to holding stock of books and sets for sale, as well as holding enough investments to ensure its ability to repay loans and creditors.

  15. konrad says:

    The answer to the allocations to regions question is as follows: regional fees are not allocated for overseas members (i.e. who do not reside in one of the regions) or for members whose fees are paid from the development fund. The amount allocated for the remaining members in 2004 was exactly 40% of the membership fees.

  16. Chris says:

    How was this 40% allocated to the different regions? And if the answer is: “only to the regions with valid constitutions and properly elected committees”, will this historical imbalance be rectified in the future? ie so that clubs that had paying members but didn’t receive any benefits will receive a greater share of the 40% in years to come?

    In fact, has this 40% allocation actually been handed over in its entirity, or has some of it been accumulating over the years?

  17. Steve says:

    Since this is a question I’ve asked in a past, I’ll just pass the answer along.

    The 40%’s are allocated by the member to the region in which they live. The allocated funds are kept in trust by SAGA until a Regional Council is formed which is approved by SAGA, at which time that council can either receive the money from SAGA, or allow SAGA to disburse it according to its wishes, depending on what arrangements suit the 2 bodies. I.e. at the moment, no money has ever been handed over to the regions directly – but an enquiry into the loans on the balance sheet revealed that the Gauteng region currently has over R6500 in trust with SAGA, and the Western Cape slightly over R750 going into 2005. Given the number of WC SAGA members in 2005, this amount should probably now be over R1000 by now.

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