Given the fact that our clubs spring dinner fundraiser had been stifled or greatly reduced the past 3 years due to Covid, I had decided to attend this year’s delegates meeting via Zoom instead of making the trip to Indianapolis. This saved the club about $500 in travel expenses. I have put together my notes from the meeting and will also include reports from the various AHCA representatives.
Each year the AHCA makes contributions to the Donald M. Healey Memorial Fund. In recent years this fund has sponsored scholarships to a student or students attending McPherson College in Kansas. McPherson is the only college in the country that offers a bachelor's degree in automotive restoration. This year two $3000 scholarships were awarded. The funds originate from money made from selling spots in the yearly Austin Healey calendar. In order to have your car featured in the calendar, a payment of $250 is made to the DMH fund. Also, the Ontario club sponsors the “pilots' parade” at the Canadian Formula 1 race event. Each year the opportunity to drive your Healey in the parade with a Formula 1 driver is auctioned off. Proceeds from this auction also go to the DMH fund. Lastly, donations are also accepted from club members to help with this endeavor.
The AHCA requires all chapter clubs to submit yearly reports of club activity, a financial statement, and an officer roster. Non-compliant clubs are subject to suspension. Five-chapter clubs have fallen into this category. They were all contacted by the national officers, and it was found that these clubs simply have no activity for one reason or another. The following clubs have been suspended from the AHCA and may be reactivated if and when the interest arises to reinvigorate the chapter.
West Palm Beach
Road Runner (New Mexico)
Niagara Frontier (Buffalo Area)
The Nasty Boys (modified Healeys) and the Healey Sport Boats are affiliated clubs and have yet to be contacted about non-compliance. They will be given the option to become registries only, which means that they will have no delegate, no voting rights, and no insurance.
In past years the Formula 1 pilots parade opportunity was auctioned off at the November delegates meeting. Non delegate members could bid by phone or have their delegate representative bid on their behalf. The Ontario club has decided to do this by sealed bid this year so stay tuned to the Healey Marque for details. I believe that the highest price paid for this event was $5700 a few years back.
Possible updates to our club insurance may be coming to lower costs yet keep our great coverage. Options are being explored and hopefully we will have an update by the end of the year.
Enclave 2022 in the Poconos was a great success. “Enclave” is a joint event between the AHCA and the Sports and Touring Club. Several of our Wisconsin Club members made the trip and I am sure they have great stories of their adventure. In all, the event hosted over 300 registrations and over 600 guests. It was a great event held entirely at the Kalahari resort. After final tabulations were made, the event ran at a profit and a $16,000 donation was made to the United Way. The event featured several significant and rarely seen Austin Healeys. Watch for the event feature in the upcoming January Healey Marque.
Conclave 2023 will be held in Crystal River Florida on May 21st-26th and will be sponsored by the Tampa Bay club. Registration has just recently opened and they’re are currently 30 registrants and 3 cars have signed up for concourse judging. Bill Emerson, Healey historian and author, will be hosting an open house at his residence during the event. This will be an opportunity to see his extensive collection of Healeys and memorabilia. All registrations are to be done through the AHCA website. Be sure you read the instructions on the Conclave 2023 home page. There is important information there that will ensure that your registration is seamless. Once your registration is complete, you may order any regalia items that you wish.
Much of the time at this year’s meeting revolved around budgetary concerns that the AHCA is experiencing. Inflation experienced over the past year has left the AHCA in a tough position. The fact that there haven’t been any dues increase in 12 years has made it tough for the club to keep up with inflation. For the first time in years, the AHCA ran into the red with a $27,000 deficit with concerns to the budget. The club insurance as well as most other expenses have seen an increase. A large portion of the yearly budget is spent on the Healey Marque and the membership directory. Rising costs of postage and a 300% increase in the cost of paper has made us all rethink how the funds are best spent. This proved to be quite a juggling act. On one hand we didn’t want to cheapen the product that the AHCA offers and on the other hand we didn’t want to increase dues to the point that it will turn members away. There were many different proposals on the table and in the end, this is what was decided in order to balance the budget.
The Membership Directory will now be digital only. It can be accessed through the AHCA website. It will not look exactly like the printed version but will have most of the same information and will be downloadable in PDF form for those wanting a printed copy of all or part of the directory.
The Healey Marque will go from eleven 40-page issues to four 40 page and four 48 page issues. The spring will feature a 48 page Jan-Feb issue and a 48 page Mar-April issue. During the driving season, you will see the customary 40 page issue in May, June, July, and August. Then fall will feature a 48 page Sept-Oct issue and a 48 page Nov-Dec issue. The elimination of 3 issues was a large cost savings to the club. With the fewer issues we decided to make the four combined issues eight pages longer. The extra pages could be included at a minimal cost. The Healey Marque will also be available in digital form for those who would prefer this format. This will also give the club evidence as to the popularity of the digital version and make it much easier to determine if going completely digital sometime in the future would be an option in the best interest of the club members.
The calendar will remain unchanged and will come to you to be displayed proudly in a place of honor in your homes. It would be even better if there were some Wisconsin cars featured, so consider sending in a photo of your ride to be included in the 2024 edition as 2023 is already sold out. Funds collected will now go to help offset the cost of the calendar instead of being donated to the DMH fund.
Discussion of a dues increase was a hotly debated topic. It was agreed upon that some kind of raise in the dues was inevitable due to the more expensive cost of living from the last increase in 2010. It was finally decided that an increase from $50 to $70 was needed to keep the club solvent. This increase, along with the cost saving changes mentioned previously, will allow the AHCA to operate under a balanced budget yet still allow the club to offer great benefits. With these changes, the 2023 balanced budget was passed by the delegates.
This concluded the delegated meeting for 2022. The 2023 meeting is scheduled for November 11th and 12th in Indianapolis.
Wisconsin Chapter Delegate