by Al Myers, USAWA Secretary
Minutes from the 2012 Annual National Meeting
The 2012 USAWA Annual National Meeting was called to order at 6:30 PM June 29th by USAWA President Denny Habecker at the Cantina Restaurant within the Silverton Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. Roll call was taken by USAWA secretary Al Myers, with 14 USAWA members in attendance: Denny Habecker, Al Myers, Scott Tully, Darren Barnhart, Chad Ullom, Susan Sees, Dennis Mitchell, Judy Habecker, Dave Glasgow, LaVerne Myers, Art Montini, Dale Friesz, Larry Traub, and Bob Geib. The only USAWA Executive Board member missing from attendance was Scott Schmidt. The minutes from the 2011 Annual National Meeting were read by Al Myers. Judy Habecker moved to accept the minutes, with a second by Chad Ullom, and they passed unanimously. Next up was the financial status report by USAWA treasurer Al Myers. A net profit of $1120.95 was reported for 2011. Al presented a budget that was approved by the Executive Board which showed a budget of $5200 for 2012. Judy Habecker moved to accept the treasurer report, with a Bob Geib second. The motion passed unanimously. The report of the Officials Director Joe Garcia was next. Since Joe was unable to be in attendance, he prepared a report that was presented by Al Myers. In Joe’s report, he stated that 9 new officials have passed the written exam. He also stated that the organization should look into ways to improve practical judging experience, such as sitting with other certified officials to increase experience. Bob Geib moved to accept the report with a second by Chad Ullom. It passed unanimously. The report from the website director Al Myers was next. Al gave several website statistics, along with website registration numbers and website activity. He also stated that the USAWA website is now approaching 1000 blogs, and includes all meet results since 2009. Al also commented on the online store, which he estimated has made around $300 for the USAWA to date. After the report, Chad Ullom mentioned that we should look into setting up a Paypal Account so that members can pay online. Al remarked that he has looked into this and it could be easily set up, but explained there are charges with it that would have to be reflected in higher prices on the part of the USAWA. Again, Bob Geib moved to accept the report with a second by Chad Ullom. It passed unanimously. The report from the Records Director Joe Garcia was again given by Al Myers on Joe’s behalf. Joe stated that there are now close to 10,500 records on file and so far this year over 500 records have been set. Joe stated in his report that anyone wanting a copy of the record list should send him an email requesting it, and it would be sent by email free of charge. If you want a paper copy, there would be a “price” with it. Chad Ullom moved to accept the report, with a second by Judy Habecker. It passed unanimously. The report by the Awards Director Al Myers was next. Al stated the fuction of the awards program, such as providing the USAWA yearly awards and any special awards given on behalf of the USAWA. He stated that $850 was spent last year on the awards program, with the budget this year being $1000. Chad moved to accept the report, Darren Barnhart gave a second, and it passed unanimously. The report from the Drug Enforcement Director Chad Ullom was next. Chad reported that 8 USAWA events were tested last year at random, with around 15 lifters being tested. No positive tests were reported. Judy moved to accept the report. Bob Geib gave a second, and it passed unanimously. Next agenda item was the discussion and vote on 8 new proposed lifts which have all been reviewed and accepted by the USAWA Executive Board. These 8 lifts are: Peoples Deadlift, Anderson Press, Anderson Squat, Dumbbell to Shoulder, Bench Press – Fulton Bar, Curl – Reverse Grip, Deadlift – No Thumbs, Overhand Grip, and Total Poundage. The rules and descriptions of each of these lifts was read to the membership in attendance. There was discussion to name the Bench Press – Fulton Bar the “Tully Bench” since he was the one to propose it, but Scott refused that name stating that he “hates that lift”. Darren moved to accept these new proposed lifts as official lifts, with a second made by Judy. Al then moved to amend the motion by allowing any of these lifts done this prior year by these accepted rules to have any records set retroactively as official. Chad Ullom gave a second on the amendment. After no discussion, the amendment passed unanimously. Then a vote was taken on the original motion and it passed unanimously, so these new proposed lifts are now official lifts and will be added to the rulebook. As required by the USAWA rules, Al asked if anyone had a lift, which included these new 8 lifts, that they would like to see presented to the IAWA for IAWA approval. No motions were made so no lifts will be presented on behalf of the USAWA this year at the IAWA general meeting for IAWA lift approval. The next agenda item was the proposed rulebook changes. This list of proposed rulebook changes had been previously approved by the Executive Board. Several changes were proposed in individual rules that were clarifications of rules. The big item was adding a provision to the Officials Section, which would now require all new officials undergo a practical training period of 3 events after passing the written rules test before attaining certified official status. Another proposed rule change outlined a method for keeping track of repetition records based on Lynch Points. Darren moved to accept the proposed rule changes with a second by Scott Tully. There was no discussion and it passed unanimously. The next agenda item was proposed bylaw changes, all of which have received previous unanimous support by the Executive Board. The changes involved raising sanction fees and club dues to $30, and assigning a USAWA Postal Director who would be responsible for organizing the USAWA Postal Series and the USAWA National Postal Meet. Darren moved to accept the new bylaw changes, with a second by Chad Ullom. It passed unanimously. At this point, Al moved to assign John Wilmot as the USAWA Postal Director since he has been unofficially performing this duty for several years now. Included in Al’s motion was for the USAWA to sponsor the sanction fees for the events in the Postal Series. Bob Geib gave a second, and the motion passed unanimously. At this point in the meeting it seemed like everyone was in agreement on issues and everything was going smooth with no controversy. But all this changed with the next meeting agenda item – new business. Scott Tully started new business discussion with a proposal of allowing knee sleeves in all lifts within the USAWA. After several “gasps” amongst a few of the members in attendance and several glances of awkward stares, a few members started voicing their disapproval of this. Dale Friesz made several good points about how not allowing supportive equipment in the USAWA was a founding principle in the USAWA. Art Montini also spoke against it for the same reason. At this point, Darren explained how knee sleeves are not really that supportive and are worn mostly for safety reasons and joint protection. Dennis Mitchell then spoke out against the use of knee sleeves, and made a good argument that by allowing knee sleeves it will just lead the way to more supportive equipment being allowed in the future. Scott countered that by not allowing knee sleeves it is keeping most younger lifters from competing in the USAWA because they don’t want to ruin their joints and have to have joint replacements in the future. Larry Traub made several good points in favor of knee sleeves, and commented that open patella knee sleeves are not really that supportive. It was at this point Bob Geib moved to allow only open patella knee sleeves, with a second by Darren. This was followed by comments by Al Myers that this issue is really bigger than just the USAWA, and should be a matter resolved by the IAWA. Al remarked that if we would allow knee sleeves while the rest of IAWA doesn’t, it could disqualify any of our record lifts for World Record consideration. Bob Geib then withdrew his motion. Chad Ullom then moved that we propose allowing knee sleeves to the IAWA technical committee, and that a proposal be written by the Executive Board to be submitted to the IAWA technical committe and that this issue be placed upon the IAWA general meeting agenda at the next world meeting. Bob seconded the motion. A vote was taken – 10 in favor (Denny, Bob, Chad, Darren, Scott, Larry, Dave, Judy, Susan and Dennis), 3 opposed (Art, Dale, and LaVerne) and 1 abstaining (Al). It passed by majority vote. The next new business item brought to the meeting floor was by Darren Barnhart, who started discussion on having the USAWA record list on the website so all members could have easy access to it. Most members were in favor of this, and when this issue was directed to Al Myers, the webmaster, why this hasn’t happened he had to explain. Al made a point to the membership that anything he will say he has already said to the records director Joe Garcia concerning this issue. Al stated firmly that for him to put the record list on the website three criteria must be met: 1. only official lifts in the record list, 2. all lifts named the same in the record list as in the rulebook, and 3. overall records kept that are required by the rulebook. Most seemed in favor of this. Chad Ullom then moved that this order be made to Joe Garcia that these changes be made, and be done within 90 days. Darren gave a second and the motion passed unanimously. There was no other new business. The last agenda item was accepting bids for the 2013 National Championship. Denny gave the lone bid. Judy moved that the bid be accepted, Al gave a second, and it passed unanimously. The meeting ended by President Denny Habecker declaring the meeting adjourned after 2.5 hours.