[Ansteorra-announce] [Announcements] request for commentary regarding membership numbers

Baron, Meg Meg.Baron at experian.com
Tue Mar 16 12:52:55 PST 2004

Greetings unto the membership of the SCA,

Recently the Board of Directors received a request asking us to review the
current rules governing the types of SCA memberships that count toward the
status of recognized groups, and to consider allowing all types of
memberships (including Associate and Family) to be counted in the makeup of
SCA branches. Under our current rules, which have remained unchanged for
some 20 years, only subscribing memberships (Sustaining and International)
are counted toward the minimum number of members required for SCA branches.

Similar suggestions were made by a number of individuals in the recent
membership survey, and the Board feels this would be a positive change which
would benefit both SCA branches and individual members.  To that end, we are
seeking commentary from the membership on the following:

1.  	Should all types of membership (Sustaining, International,
Associate, and Family) count toward the number of members required for an
SCA branch to maintain or advance its status?

If the above change is made, we must then consider what modifications, if
any, should be made to the current minimum numbers required for an SCA
branch to exist, or to advance in status.  

The current minimum Society requirements (which have been in effect for some
20 years) are as follows:

Kingdoms 		400 Subscribing members
Principalities 		100 Subscribing members
Baronies 		25 Subscribing members
Other branches 
 (shires, cantons, colleges, etc.)                5 Subscribing members

These numbers were originally set with the idea that, in addition to the
minimum number of subscribing members, each group would likely have a number
of other types of members as well, which would help sustain the group.
Therefore, the Board has discussed whether these numbers should be raised if
all memberships count toward a branch's status.  

At present, slightly more than 40 percent of our members are Associate or
Family members.  This percentage is fairly uniform across the kingdoms of
the Known World, though it is somewhat lower in Drachenwald and Ealdormere.
In order to attempt to maintain the current ratios, one option  would be
simply to raise the required number of members for each type of branch by
approximately 40 percent.  This would result in the following new minimum
Society requirements:

Kingdoms	560 members (any type)
Principalities	140 members (any type)
Baronies	35 members (any type)
Other branches	7 members (any type)

The questions the Board would like the membership to comment on, related to
this subject, are:

If all types of memberships count toward branch status, should the required
numbers of members be adjusted upward?

3.	Should these adjustments be for every type of branch, or only for
certain ones?  If only certain ones, please be specific.  For example, one
option would be to increase required numbers for principalities and
kingdoms, but leave groups below the principality level as they are.

4.	Is the 40 percent proposal cited above reasonable?  We are
particularly interested in hearing of specific examples of branches that
this change might negatively impact.

Please note that, in the event the minimum required number of members for
some or all types of branches is increased, there will very likely be a
grace period for existing groups to meet the new numbers; that grace period
would be at least a year, perhaps longer.

The only revision to the Governing Documents that this change would require
is to Corpora, Section III.C.4-7, in which the word "subscribing" would be
struck in the sections that explain how many subscribing members are
required for that type of branch.  If the numbers are raised, then the
specific number would also need to be changed in each branch description

It can't be stressed enough how much the Board appreciates input from the
membership. When tackling issues such as the ones above, it is easy to miss
subtle ramifications these changes may cause. Your comments will go a long
way toward helping us make the best decision for the SCA. So please tell us
what you think.

The deadline for commentary on this proposal is July 1.  Please send your
comments to comments at sca.org

or by mail to:

Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc.
P.O. Box 360789
Milpitas, CA 95036-0789
Comments are strongly encouraged and can be sent to: 
SCA Inc.
Box 360789
Milpitas,  CA 95036

You may also email comments at sca.org or reply to this message.
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