Chairman's Update - Tom Smith
RV Warranty Issues
Over recent times members have approached me about various RV warranty issues as well as concerns with the rated weights applied to their RV and in particular their caravan. When these issues are raised, the members invariably ask what ACC can do to assist. Some suggest that ACC simply raise this with our industry contacts.
Raising issues with industry is not quite as simple as calling them up and saying that one of our members has had this issue! As a club representing the interests of our members we can certainly make representation to the industry, However it is not appropriate to simply raise issues or matters on a here say basis. To have any chance of being heard and acted upon by the industry the club must present unbiased facts about the problem. It also needs to clearly document the course of action taken by the member and the response of the dealer concerned.
With the increasing number of issues being raised by members the Club is happy to collectively present these cases to the industry controlling body however to do this we need members with concerns to document in writing:
1. The issue they have
2. The course of action the member has taken and with whom.
3. The response from the dealer or other supplier regarding the outcome.
Once we have member’s responses we will be in a position to place these concerns before the industry. Without members factual input we as a club cannot take this matter forward.
To have any chance of the industry listening to us we need hard factual irrefutable evidence.
ACC Facebook Page
Recently a story contributed by a member appeared on the ACC Facebook page noting a constant danger to caravans using a bypass under a low bridge. The result is a caravan less roof air conditioner and other roof mounted equipment. The picture below highlights the damage.
A suggestion from Tom, if possible change the settings on your GPS to truck or caravan this may help avoid problems with low bridges.
As well as a great note for warning members the story set a record for visitation to the ACC Facebook page. The attached report highlights the impact that the story had on visits. An amazing increase and record for the ACC Facebook page.
The Board is seeking to increase awareness of the Club making much more active use of the ACC Facebook page. We have a ready army of reporters in our 4000 members. To assist members prepare material for ACC Facebook page the Board has appointed Margie Smith as Online Editor. This role is to source, style and arrange publishing of stories for both the ACC Facebook page and website.
This is an exciting new initiative and the Board encourages members to contact Margie who is available to stylize your story for the ACC Facebook page and website.
Membership Renewal Notices
Membership Renewal Notices, issued from the first of July this year, have an extra item that should be filled in, should you wish to receive your issues of the Nomad in hard (i.e. paper) copy.
The delivery of a printed version of the Nomad is conditional on members paying an additional fee to cover the postage and handling costs involved. Currently this fee amounts to $20 p.a. - so for a one year renewal you need to pay an additional $20 on top of your membership renewal fee. For three year renewals an additional $60 is required.
The Board is sending a reminder to all Branches it is necessary to comply with the Branch Operational Procedures (BOP) in the following areas of Branch administration. A copy of the BOP is held in the documents section on the Club website. For detailed information please refer to section 6 Branch Management [ii] and [iii] and section 9 Club Clothing & Signage [a] [b] and [c] for the following:
Musters and Events - PRIOR Board approval is required for all events held. This is essential as club insurance requires that all events are sanctioned by club management prior to being held.
Event Attendance Sheets - Each person attending the event must complete their details and SIGN the form. This is required for insurance purposes. Following the event a copy of the attendance form is to be forwarded by the Branch Secretary to the ACC Secretary.
Financial Reports - Prepare financial statement for the branch as at 30 June each year. The financial statement is to be signed by two Branch committee members and forwarded to ACC Secretary by 31 July each year.
If your Branch hasn’t forwarded an end of financial year statement to the ACC Secretary please do so as soon as possible.
Club Clothing and Signage - Board approval is required for Branch banners, logos, flags, clothing for special occasions and all promotional material prior to use or sale of items.
2017 Australian Caravan Club Safari
Ron McGrice Safari Coordinator would like members to seriously think about going on the Safari.
Twenty caravans are needed on the first Safari, to travel the complete route, Sydney, Snowy Mountains, Melbourne, along the coast to Mt Gambier, then Adelaide, Wilpena Pound, Ayers Rock, Alice Springs, Darwin, back to the Three Ways, across to Townsville, down to Brisbane then Sydney via Armidale, 63 days in total.
Membership Support Committee Update - Graham Christie
Our Committee has had a change of name from Branch to Membership Support. The new name reflects the work the current State Reps do by welcoming new members to the club, working in recruitment as well as helping members who wish to form a new branch or who want general advice on their membership. Kim Gladman from the Sunshine Coast has also joined the committee as the Show Coordinator.
The club has a new Special Interest Group (SIG) in the English Van Owners. If you have an English Van or Motorhome go to the SIG section on the Web page and join the group who were formed to share tips and advice on their vans. Members can contact their State Membership Rep if they would like to form a SIG.
Advocacy and Policy Team Update – Graeme Tree
The expanded role of incorporating the Town Support roles into the policy team seems to be working very well particularly through the appointment of Sate Reps who in effect are becoming the face of ACC advocacy within their state. Coordination of these roles at a club wide level provides the necessary support and consistency of our voice.
The National Muster at Shepparton will also provide us with the opportunity to meet face to face as a group (all team members apart from one will be attending) enabling us as team to review and reconsider what has been achieved and work through what works and what doesn’t as well as how we can improve what we are doing to better meet the needs of ACC membership.
Our Queensland State Rep Ray Cornall is developing and expanding the club’s advocacy profile in that state by maintaining ongoing contact with the Fraser Coast Council meeting with the Mayor and assisting council with its deliberations regarding RV parking and provision of overnight camp stops.
He has also made contact with Gympie Regional council and has commenced dialogue with the possible objective of gaining an RV camp stop at the Gympie showgrounds.
Ray’s profile has developed to such an extent that he was contacted by a lady in Kuranda seeking to re-establish the Chamber of Commerce with the objective of increasing RV tourism through Kuranda. It has subsequently transpired that the lady thought she was talking to the CMCA however seizing the opportunity Ray was able to provide her details of the ACC Town Support programme.
Eric Cumming our State Rep continues to monitor developments within the state and in particular the WA governments re rite of camping legislation and regulations, however as with all matters political they take time for anything to eventuate.
Darrell Phillips our state rep delivered an ACC submission to the District Council of Grant
(Mount Gambier) It is pleasing to report that the council has now developed a “free Camping Policy” and is planning opening of a number of camps in the council area.
Publicity Update – Lionel Mussell
With the National Muster fast approaching I’ll be sending invitations to the RV media inviting them to cover the event. I have already given my editor at Caravan World an invitation to send someone and she has noted it in her diary. I’ll also send information to the Shepparton news media.
The next edition of Caravan World (November - out in October) will have two ACC stories - one general one by freelance writer, Claudia Bouma helped by me, Rob Tudor, Tom Smith and Alan Lazarus, and one personal one about my involvement with our club since day one at Golden Beach.
Meet Your Club Official
Each edition we will introduce the Membership to Club Officials who undertake work on behalf of the club.
In the spotlight this edition are Allan & Heather Hermann.
How and why did you come to join the ACC?
We owned a Motorhome and we were asked to join the club by a friend.
What do you do within the ACC?
We are the Club Shop Coordinators.
Where do you live and why?
We live on the Sunshine Coast – it is the best spot to live
What is your favourite holiday destination in Australia?
Do you have a special camp spot?
Yes, Kenilworth in Qld
What is your rig?
Our vehicle is a Jeep and we tow a Coromal Caravan.
What tips do you have for those new to caravanning?
The best tip we can give is to get out and enjoy yourself.
What is next on your bucket list to do?
We want to travel around Australia again.
What is the most incredible view you have ever seen?
The Horizontal Falls in Western Australia.
If you could close your eyes and be anywhere on earth when they opened, where would it be?
We would be in Canada.
Notes from the Board will be produced every 8 weeks.