Meeting of the Board of Directors                    

                                           4 pm, August 27, 2005      Hyatt Regency, Dearborn


I.        Call to Order          – President Finger  4:05pm


II.     Roll Call                 – Mike Strub

Present:  Al Bobrofsky, Ann Bobrofsky, Mike Denany, Kelly Finger, Steve Friedman, Greg Guseff, Joe LeBlanc,

Steve Marzilli (at 4:16pm), Dr. Parks, Bill Summerell, Dany Rothfeld, Larry Sekulich, Mike Strub

                        Absent:  Michael Marotta, Robert Lusch, Tracy Tabor


III.   Introduction of Visitors – President Finger

Pat Heller, Cliff Mischler, Florence Schook, Brian Malnar, Ray Dillard, Harry Tileston, Ed Williams;  the following

officers of the Central States Numismatic Society:  President Marv Mericle; Secretary-Treasurer Jerry Lebo; Governors Patricia Finner, Jack Huggins, James Moores, and Wendell Wolka; and Centinel Editor Roland Finner.


IV.  Invocation              – Joe LeBlanc


V.     Minutes of Jan 30, 2005 – Joe LeBlanc

A.                 Approved


VI.  Changes to Agenda            – Board

A.                 Removed XI. B. Tom Noe

B.                 Add XI. F. Allocation of budget for signage, G. Meeting times to accommodate dealers, H. Sales Tax, I. Scout Program


VII.            Approve Agenda          – Board                       

A.                 A motion was made to approve agenda by Dany Rothfeld, was seconded by Greg Guseff, and passed.


Out of sequence, the following reports were given for the convenience of those giving them:

(IX.         A.)  Ray Dillard – 50th Anniversary Committee

a.       Spider Press gentleman cannot come as he is celebrating his anniversary.

b.      Mint is giving Ray the run-around - $15k - $17k would bring them to us, but Ray turned them down.

c.       Commemorative Redbook – this is not dead, we are still negotiating.  It is still in process.

d.      Medals – there will be a more extensive report later on, but Ray is still involved with the committee and in discussions.  Ray suggested that he has made commemorative rolled coins for major shows and organizations in the past; he would be willing to roll one for us, and will donate the die.  He suggests that we use Michigan quarters for this issue.


(XI.         H.)  Pat Heller – Sales Tax Issue

In 1999 we achieved this exemption in Michigan for U.S. coins.  A month ago, negotiations began for adding items back to sales tax rolls.  Coins were on the list, $400k/year believed to be achievable by the state.  When the final version is brought to the floor of the senate, if this is still on the list, there will be nothing we can do to get it off.  At a recent semi-public meeting, Pat Heller, Jonathan Abbott, and another dealer testified.  They explained that since the 1999 exemption, more jobs and conventions have arisen, leading to more taxes collected.  Pat provided a copy of the presentation that he made to them.  He said that he has engaged a lobbyist to assist us for a 3-month period, extendable in 1-month increments, at $3k/month.  ICTA has worked hard on this – Pat is a member.  So far, Pat has gotten $5k in contributions from Michigan dealers to offset the committed costs.   Al Bobrofsky says that as a 501c (7) organization, we should be careful how much we contribute to these causes.  Pat responded that the threshold is 5% of revenues for us; below 5%, we will not be in danger of untoward scrutiny.

(not on the agenda)


 Pat Heller – Patriot Act Issue As early as January, dealers may have to have a plan in place to show that they are complying with section 352, watching out for money-laundering activities.  It covers coin dealers with $50k/year sales or purchases, calculated in terms of intrinsic value.  You must have evidence of continuing education of compliance-responsible personnel.  IOTA provides seminars, which can be purchased by members and non-members, featuring an IRS agent who wrote the regulations.  This course results in a certificate which can be used as proof of compliance.  Pat suggests that MSNS could provide this at a convention and perhaps even profit from it.  Kelly said that after the coming Long Beach show, at which such a course will be provided, he could provide more details.  The issued is tabled, and Pat was thanked for bringing this to our attention.


(XI.        I.)  Scout program – Patty Finner

Conducting a scouting badge forum at our next MSNS should be open to more than a couple of troops.  Patty would be                           glad to help make sure this happens, as she has done it before for up to 3,000 boy scouts at a time.  She could bring in the US Mint’s free give-aways, and she knows George Cuhaj, who wrote the scout badge requirements.  One of the badge requirements is to come to a coin show.  Patty is a certified boy scout coin collecting merit badge counselor.  Patty will come without cost to MSNS.  Kelly thanked Patty for her offer.  We will table this offer to the committee responsible, and the committee will contact Patty.         Discussion ensued about whether the scouts would be exhibiting at the same show.  It was concluded that this is separate from the merit badge requirements, but that there would probably be only 5 or 10 exhibitors.  Although we must be open to all scouts in our district, the exhibits are under MSNS control.  Discussion of the timing of the session was also discussed; but all details were referred to the committee (not on the agenda)


Convention issues - Don Charters         CSNS Show:  Has run smoothly;  130 paid dealer tables, all fully paid for except for 7 that are partially paid or free.  Fall Show:  Several dealers have asked for 2 tables.  Policy has been to limit dealers to 1 table in main room; if they want more, they must go to the annex.  We have been losing dealers who say they do better on the internet.  50th anniversary show demand for tables is great, may run out of space.  Steve Friedman said we should be giving dealers the right to have more than one table at conventions, especially those who have played by the rules, e.g. SilverTowne.  Bill Summerall said we don’t have as many tables there now.  Kelly tabled further discussion, asking that the speakers address that committee instead.


VIII.         Officer Reports

A.                 President – Kelly Finger – no report

B.                 Vice President – Ann Bobrofsky – no report

C.                 Secretary-Treasurer – Joe LeBlanc:

1.      Taxes 2004 Status:  Tom Colson and Jack Huggins worked together and filed forms. 

2.      Review of Current Financials

a. .Have $45k in checking at the moment.  Also have 3 CDs at this time – total value $72,500.   We are allowed to have 1.5x our yearly expenses as a bankroll.  At approximately $150k, we will therefore need to begin wise expenditures.  It was noted that we raised the bourse fees to get out of our financial dire straits.  We could reverse this as finances improve..

3.      Membership

a.       Membership totals:  We have 448 regular members, plus 29 juniors, and 25 clubs.  We have 471 Life Members, plus 22 honorary..  Total members of all types:  995.

b.      We have lost touch with the Israel Numismatic Society – no address;  Lagrange Area Coin Club – no 2005 dues received; and Grand Rapids Coin Club – no 2005 dues received.

c.       Life Members:  We have one new applicant.  We also have $36,500 or so in the life fund

4.      Budget for Spring 05

a.       In the black over $16k, $11k more than we had anticipated.  The final report mailed to board members shows details.  Ann Bobrofsky moved that we accept this report; Steve Friedman seconded the motion, and it was approved.

5.      Budget for CSNS

a.       Numbers improved greatly over the last 30 days; we were still selling tables 48 hours before convention.  We may not have sold enough rooms and may owe a penalty.  We had expected 150 tables, but only sold 130.  The supply dealer had paid for his table but had a back injury and couldn’t come.  Two dealers who made deposits didn’t show up.  The profit or loss on this convention is not yet known.

6.      Budget for MSNS Fall ‘05

a.       We are expecting to sell 170 tables, and be $28k in the black.  69.5 tables were sold before this current CSNS convention.  Dr. Parks moved, and Greg Guseff seconded a motion to approve this working budget; it passed.

7.      Budget for MSNS 2005

a.       Mich-Matist running high expense-wise.  Also, ad revenue has increased with our ad rate increase

8.      Property Report

a.       Lamps are breaking, nothing unusual


IX.  Committee Reports

A.                 Anniversary – Kelly Finger

1.      50th Anniversary Medal – discussion of 1956 Franklin halves being rolled, or Michigan quarters being rolled.  Committee will continue to discuss.  Dr. Parks said that the committee discussed whether they’d like an art medal or a medallion.  SilverTowne was suggested as a vendor.  Royal Oak recently did this, and it cost $1.75 + spot for silver, $50 + spot for gold, plus a $50 set up fee, and a charge for engraving of dies.  Art medals could be done on a subscription basis, and if enough subscriptions were not received, they could be cancelled.  Committee decided to do both.  They will also do a mailing to all members inviting them to do a design.  A $50 prize will go to the winner, so MSNS would obtain property rights to this design.  The committee needs a budget for postage.  October 15 would be the requested submission date to receive designs.  What we’d want on the design would be posted to the website, e.g. title and logo elements might be the minimum.  President Finger settled the argument about whether 2005 or 06 would be considered our 50th; saying that we’ve already agreed it is 2006.  We therefore have enough time for this design competition.  Patty Finner suggested that we could market these to a medal collecting society to make this profitable if we went the “art medal” route.  Much discussion of the design of the medal, including that Cliff Mischler noted that SilverTowne has the ability to take even ugly drawings and make them into beautiful art medal relief.  Is there enough time?  We decided to change the deadline to November 1, and then decide on a winner before the fall convention.  More discussion ensued on the design and the capability of vendors.  Mike Denany and Dany Rothfeld moved/seconded to budget $750 for the printing and mailing to all members of postcards telling them of this design contest - approved.  Dr. Parks and Joe LeBlanc will try to get this out in a week.  Dr. Parks moved, Mike Denany seconded, that there be a $50 prize for the winning design, plus a certificate, 2 tickets to the  recognition breakfast, and (if produced) a set of bronze and silver medals.  Passed.

2.      Red Book idea – Cliff said he’d made every effort to achieve this on our behalf. 

3.      Exhibits – Bob Sayer donation received by Al Bobrofsky.  Al offered to produce a non-competitive exhibit therefrom for the next three shows.  Dr. Parks moved, and Dany Rothfeld seconded, that he do so - motion passed.

4.      Banquet – still being considered for Fall 2006.

B.                 Exhibits – Frank Passic

1.      Exhibit Application Problem:  Mich-matist lacked exhibit applications in issues 150, 150 (sic), and 151.  August 13 issue had the application in it, but due date was August 15 – we didn’t get any responses from this source, only from CSNS who promptly posted it in THEIR publication.  Therefore the 4 pages we printed were a waste.  ALSO we didn’t get any forms from the website, because it wasn’t posted there – INSTEAD a notice that it was TOO LATE was posted at the beginning of August.  These failures to publish on the website and Mich-matist were not Frank’s fault; he provided the information at a board meeting to Mike Marotta.  ALSO – the website now says we were founded in 1959, not 1956!  Discussion of issues with the Mich-matist and its editor were deferred to IX. E.

C.                 Auctions – Bill Summerell

1.      Bill has not taken any specific actions yet.  Steve Friedman said that the auctions attract a lot of people; they are very expensive to run, and we need them to make our Annex viable.  Discussion ensued.  Dr. Parks asked that the auction committee do their work, approach auctioneers and do a presentation.  President Finger instructed the auction committee to create an exact proposal to present to all auctioneers, in terms of the tables we will provide, rooms we will pay for or not, signage and advertising that we will provide, etc.  This should be presented, and bids received.  We should be willing to consider all proposals from auction houses.  By Fall meeting, there should be a list of auction houses to whom this proposal will be sent. It should include both Fall and Spring shows.

D.                 Past Presidents – no new report

E.                  Mich-Matist – Dr. Parks

1.      We have a lot of problems, there is a lot of work to be done.  How far shall Dr. Parks go, what do we want him to do?  We don’t know what form is required for submission, when issues will come out.  Each issue needs to be better than the last.  It should be a group effort.  Picture quality should be increased.  Production of the publication could be of higher quality or left as it is.  There are typographical errors.  There should be proofing of the publication.  Dany Rothfeld said that he is concerned that Mike is not responsive or is hard to deal with.  He said that he has spoken with Tom Klunzinger, to see if he would be willing to take the job back were we to offer it.  There was general opposition to that idea.  Patty Finner said it takes a lot of work to do this editing work – her husband has many years of experience.  He takes 7 trips to the printer per issue;  but the issue can be made higher quality by the printer.  Kelly Finger and several others said that the publication is definitely much improved from two years ago.  Kelly directed the committee to meet and resolve these issues either by getting the corrections and improvements to be handled, or by making new arrangements.

F.                  Publicity – Dr. Parks

1.      Patty Finner suggested that there are a number of free advertising venues that she would like to share with anyone interested.  Greg Guseff noted that the Windsor Fall show has offered us a table;  we need bodies to go there.  Dr. Parks volunteered to man this table.

G.                 Membership – Sekulich

1.      We need to advertise more to get people to join us, e.g. Numismatist.  It’s always hard to maintain membership in an organization.  We need to explain how people can contribute, and how they can benefit.  The magazine is a primary benefit.  Ideas include sending a letter to members who have fallen away;  family memberships that save money for a family. Larry’s idea is to find one or two things that are doable at this time.  Steve Friedman:  There should be freebies, like when he runs a coin show and gives a dealer a greysheet, Numismatist, etc.   Joe LeBlanc – we could give monetary awards to clubs, or free tables for dealers who sign new members.  Ann Bobrofsky – we lost members because of failure to man the membership table in the past, and even active discouragement of new member recruitment efforts.  Kelly Finger – we should man the tables with membership applications and information, like the ANA is considering requiring.  And maybe we could have an MSNS day at our conventions – giving a real benefit.  Mike Strub – we should open our conventions to MSNS members two hours before non-MSNS members!  Larry – we should make an MSNS membership nametag that could be used as identification.  Steve Friedman – we should also be able to verify membership at the entrance.  Also, non-member club shows could get advertisements in our MSNS publication if they put our flyers out at their show.

H.                 Convention Manual – Al Bobrofsky – did not meet because of meeting conflict with 50th Anniversary Committee

I.                    Convention Committee – Al Bobrofsky - Ditto

J.                   Finance Review – Ann Bobrofsky – our forms were tweaked a little, not major changes.  Ann believes everything is in order.


X.     Old Business

1.      ANA Spring 2006 Dates – Kelly Finger – there never was a real option beside April 7-9 for the Hyatt.  We will lose perhaps 15-20 dealers due to this conflict with the ANA Spring show.  Steve Friedman suggested that we see if there are very many dealer commitments to the show, and if the number is low, we consider reducing the table fee.  It was also suggested that we allow dealers to take more than one table in the main room for the Spring show.  Steve Friedman moved, and Steve Marzilli seconded, a motion to set the bourse table fee to $290 for all tables at the Spring 2006 show – the motion passed.


XI.  New Business

A.                 Whitford Advertising Bill – Joe LeBlanc

Small disputes are resolved without discussion with the board.  But this issue is that Craig Whitford did not wish to pay for two ads placed in the Mich-matist, although Mike Marotta may have mistakenly run these ads without authorization.  The board agreed that Joe may retire the obligation for this ad with Craig Whitford.  Steve Friedman added that we should send a letter saying that his account is zeroed out, and thereby attempt to repair our relationship with him. 

            B.         Tom Noe – removed from agenda

C.                 Coin Club Constitution – Joe LeBlanc

Does MSNS need a copy of the constitution and by-laws of each candidate coin club seeking to join us?  Al Bobrofsky said that this requirement was related to our 501c(7) status – member clubs need to have 501c(x) status and have a constitutional statement of what happens to their assets upon their dissolution.  The issue has arisen because of the application of the Petoskey coin club.  Issue is tabled.

D.                 Petoskey Coin Club petition for admission

1.      Steve Marzilli moved, and Mike Denany seconded, that we accept them, if they apply.  The motion was approved.

2.      Joe LeBlanc said to correct the statement that we are 501c(3) – instead, we are in fact a 501c(7). 

3.      Ann Bobrofsky noted that our constitution doesn’t currently require that we receive a copy of the other clubs’ constitutions.

E.                  WWW.Hire Tabor

Joe LeBlanc asked for a sense of the board as to whether we should advertise for assistance with the web work in the next Mich-matist.  Kelly said he’d send a letter to Tracy reminding her of her responsibility to attend board meetings and do her work as the web host.  To be further discussed at the Fall show.

F.                  Signage

Al Bobrofsky said the signage is ridiculous.  For “up to” $750 he will have some professional re-usable signage made.  Steve Marzilli moved, and Steve Friedman seconded, that he do this.  The motion was approved.

G.                 Meeting Times

Steve Friedman – meetings during bourse times interrupt deals and prevent full usage of paid bourse table time.  He suggests Sunday morning.  A motion was made by Steve Friedman that we move our meeting time to 6 pm.   The motion was nullified by President Kelly Finger, whose prerogative it is to call meetings.  Kelly asked to have all board members provide their suggestions to him, and he will decide.

H.                 Sales Tax (see previous)

I.                    Scout Program (see previous)


II.     Adjournment – moved by Steve Marzilli, seconded by Mike Denany, and approved at 7:41 pm

Respectfully submitted,     Mike Strub