(Photo by Ken Bennett) The UPAA Board at work in Utah, November 2019

Mid-Year Board Decision Announcements

During the UPAA mid-year board meeting and symposium site visit in Utah last week several decisions were made that members need to be informed of in greater detail. These decisions involve membership dues and the Annual Print Competition.
UPAA Dues Increase
At the Annual Business Meeting in Michigan in June 2019, the board discussed a possible dues increase and the reasons it is needed. There was a general consensus among the members present that the increase was reasonable. 

The UPAA board voted to increase the annual membership dues effective for 2020. The new dues will be reflected in your renewal that comes up in December. The dues rise to $150 for Full Members, $75 for Associate Members,  and $50 for Retired Members. Student membership remains the same at $25. This is the first increase in dues since 2014. 
The increase is entirely to cover the cost of maintaining and upgrading the UPAA website. The site has become the most important thing that we offer. It’s where we hold our image competitions, vote on monthly and yearly contests, show our best work, recruit new members, register and pay for the symposium, and get information about our colleagues and our profession. It is crucial to the organization to maintain and improve the site. 
Going forward we will need to do substantial work to the site to maintain its functionality, including making the move to Drupal 9 within two years, when Drupal 7 is no longer supported. This is a massive and expensive project. Currently our dues are equal to our annual operating expenses, including basic web maintenance. There is no provision for capital expenditures, such as upgrading the website. Four years ago, the full cost of the new website came from our reserves, as did all the major updates that we’ve made since then. The board will use the additional funds generated by the dues increase to pay the cost of the move to Drupal 9, and to maintain and improve the functionality beyond that. 
Change in APC Competition
In accordance with the UPAA constitution, the Board of Directors voted to change the format of the APC competition that takes place at the annual symposium. During the General Business Meeting in June at Grand Valley State University, the membership made clear that making prints has run its course. Not only at this past meeting, but for a few years prior the membership has been asking that this change be implemented. The board voted that prints will no longer be a part of the APC. The board moves deliberately on such changes and debated this point both recently and in years past. We are confident that this decision is in the best interest of the membership. 
While the format will now be digital, the Mark Philbrick Photographer of the Year Award will still be determined by the outcome of the Monthly Image Competition (MIC) in conjunction with results of the APC.
Key Points

  1. Digital entries will replace hard copy prints.
  2. The APC will be called the Annual Photo Contest.
  3. Entry fees will still be collected to fund the awards for the competition.
  4. All Full Members of UPAA will have a chance to judge the new APC. In past years only those present at the symposium had the opportunity to vote. This will allow all eligible members to have input on the contest that ultimately determines the Mark Philbrick Photographer of the Year. 


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