Board Bulletin January 2015

Rowing Ireland Board Bulletin

January 2015

This Bulletin summarises the items discussed at the Rowing Ireland Board Meeting on the 10th January 2015.

The following directors were present at the meeting: C Cronin (President), F Coghlan (Secretary), S Dunlea (Treasurer), K Kerr (Munster), L O’Callaghan (Munster), L Gibson (Leinster), G Farrell (Leinster), B Ewing (Ulster), G Young (Ulster), R Cooke (Connacht), E Colcough (Connacht).    H Adams (CEO) in attendance.

The following were the main items arising from the meeting:

1          Portora are considering running a schools regatta on Lough Rynne in September.

2          A complete second set of buoys has been purchased for the NRC

3          The 2015 High Performance Budget was approved by the Board with the following provisos/comments:

  •  The €1,000 budgeted for athlete’s participation in the Coupe was considered high but accepted due to travel cost to Szeged, Hungary.
  • Sponsorship will be sought for all or part of the travel costs to foreign regattas.
  • Although there was no budget proposed for the Junior European Championships, if the crew from 2014 made 96% GMS then they may be taken on a self funding basis.
  • The €10k being budgeted for trials in Cork will be looked at for savings
  • A policy for payment/reimbursement of expenses for volunteer HP coaches will be drafted.

4          The 2015 Core Budget was approved with the following provisos:

  • A transfer of €10k will be made from Core to HP budgets
  • The creation of an NRC sinking fund could be delayed for another year.

5          The Board was informed that P Heaney had resigned as Para Rowing Coach.   The programme will now be run by M McLachlan and provincially based volunteer coaches.    There are four athletes in the programme.

6          M Espersen, HPD, will attend the April Board meeting in order to discuss his proposal on a regionally based HP structure.

7          N. Hayes, Communications Officer is leaving RI to take up a post with RTE.  

8          Coillte has agreed to reduce the NRC rent by €4,000pa to be backdated to 2014.

9          Negotiations are continuing with the ESB for the outright purchase of their lease.

10        Terms of Reference were agreed for the Coach Education Working Group chaired by G Young.   The main challenge will be to isolate the impact of coaching on boat speed.   The Working Group will present a draft report to the Board in April

11        G Gilliland of Sport NI made a presentation on the NI Performance Focus Programme.    In the context of an expected 10% reduction in SNI funding, Sports Federations performance against the criteria and goals of the Programme will have a significant impact on future investment by SNI.    The goals cover Club Development, Coaching, Governance, Talent Identification/Development, HP Development/Performance with the latter two being the investment priorities.   SNI rated RI as generally “satisfactory” across these five categories however if we can move our ratings up towards “excellent” it will increase our funding possibilities.

12        The Board will propose to the next AGM an increase in Board membership to a maximum of 13 by giving the elected Board the option to co-op two additional members based on an assessment of needed skills or experience following elections.

13        The results of a Board self-evaluation exercise indicated good performance in key areas such as Strategic Leadership, Working in the Sports Best Interests and Transparency.    Assessed “under performance” areas were largely those of evaluating the performance and skills of both the Board and its members.

14        The 2015 key objectives for RI were discussed.   The summary feedback from the November Branch Forums was considered.   The bulk of the recorded comments related to “Participation and Competition” and “Club Development”.    The challenge was how to broaden club’s experience of RI value adding activity in these areas.    The immediate focus will be on Club Development.  A Club Development Workshop will be organised for the 28th March.

15        The Domestic Events Committee will consider which, if any, of the issues raised following a request for feedback on the points system should be considered for changes to the system in 2015.    In general it was felt that issues raised regarding Masters competition were worthy of consideration.

16        There will be an EGM in March to consider any changes proposed in the points system and/or other areas.  The Rowing Ireland AGM will be held in the Autumn as it is felt that it would be more appropriate from review and scheduling viewpoints to hold the meeting at the end, rather than in the middle, of the rowing season.

17        H Adams was appointed Rowing Ireland Equality Officer and it was agreed that Equality would be a standing item on the Board’s agenda.

18        The next Board meeting will be at 9.30 on 14th February 2015

F Coghlan,   Secretary, Rowing Ireland

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