TSAS had a good meeting on June twentieth in Eufaula. We covered our advocacy fund for Florida, our new pledge support for advocacy fund, our Floridian involvement, our scholarship fund, our newsletters, and our auction bid considerations. It was not a formal governmental discussion and many folks left early, but many felt we gained strength in agreement among us.
It is important for some in other states to understand the importance of our priority in Florida’s legislation. Florida could have a positive influence on the other states if we can reestablish a permit process and protect the collector’s rights for past recoveries. Though many neighboring states have had success with collector rights, it is also understood that Florida could swing the perspective in those states if Florida is unable to recover collector privileges and rights. We were unanimous, if we have the funds, we will continue to support the cause and advocacy fund in Florida.
We determined that we will be continuing in our efforts as an organization to continue in our advocacy fund with quarterly contract renewals. We all agreed that by doing nothing we are assured of no results, yet with twelve months already invested in our relationships with Florida governmental representatives, we ought to continue to make it a priority.
Though we have been doing auctions and finding donors to the fund, we agreed to push a new option for support. Many collectors who will one day be paying a permit fee could start allocating funds from their budget beyond membership dues but a monthly pledge contribution of ten, twenty or even thirty dollars. We came up with a slogan for the new push for advocacy support, and it is, ‘I am in it till we win it’. We had many new donations for the auction and over eight individuals commit by check for the new pledge of support.
Many do not understand the lack of Floridian involvement in the last few years especially in light of the efforts to help them. It was exposed that many collectors are uncertain of too many loose ends in the legislation that they have gone dormant. It is going to be vital that Floridian Collectors begin to unite and come together to drive the current conversations. Though many may be fearful of a turbulent legal atmosphere as to artifacts, it is vital that we unite and stand up together for our rights joined by our neighboring states. It is also important for those in other states to empathize and begin to assume the best and not the worst for the noticeably lower involvement by Florida’s collectors. Rest assured, many are doing things in Florida even it is not being broadcast.
We have one Scholarship candidate, and we have the funds allocated to cover it. The Scholarship fund is doing well as for now, but we will need to consider creative ways to ensure it be more resourceful. In the future we might consider some new ways of drawing a greater interest in our program.
As to our newsletter, we all agreed that we need to look into email newsletter and reduce our overall printed copy versions which would save us money for other points of interest. We all agreed that the newsletters are very nice but felt we could get more bang for our buck by developing it into a more user friendly format.
The last point brought up was about our auctions. We had a slogan get put forward that we should, ‘Bid till it hurts’. This is to say that, unlike other forums where one can bid in an auction format to get a good deal on a purchase, in our TSAS auctions we should consider the cause beyond getting a low bid deal. Many organizations will have for instance a pie sale, and though I can buy a pie for under twenty dollars, many bids climb up to five hundred dollars in the name of donations.
Don’t forget the next show in Dothan, and make plans to be there. Also, if you haven’t renewed your membership dues, please do. Keep in mind you can do multiple years at once. It is important for us to continue to inform the none collector community of the good attributes of collectors and diffuse the negative stigmas that tend to paint an incorrect picture of what we do.