Minutes of the District 17 Board Meeting, March 3, 2012 at the

Holiday Inn Palo Verde in Tucson, Arizona


President Carolyn Newcomb called the meeting to order at 8:00 a.m.

Present: Board members: Darwin Afdahl, Bonnie Bagley, John Grossmann, Darryl Helton, Karin Kelsey, Ralph Liguori, Carolyn Newcomb, Jerry Ranney, Marianne Spanier, John Van Ness and David Zapatka.

            Board Members elect: JoAnne Lowe, Art McHaffie and Tom Shulman

            Guest: Warren Cederborg, District 22 president

Absent: Allen Johnson

Also attending a portion of the meeting was Tom Marsh, director-in-charge and Dennis Scott, from Taos, New Mexico.

President’s Opening Remarks

Carolyn Newcomb called the meeting to order at 8:00 am. Carolyn welcomed Warren Cederborg, D22 president. Carolyn announced the following appointments - Kay Enfield from Santa Fe, Recorder, David Caprera, from Denver, Disciplinary Chair. Carolyn stated Sharon Anderson, 2012 ACBL President, attended the January Albuquerque Regional. Sharon hosted a working luncheon, sharing ideas with volunteers, teachers, club owners and tournament chairs. District 17 board members who were at the Albuquerque Regional went to dinner with Sharon and her husband Roger. A motion was made, seconded and passed to reimburse Carolyn for the dinner.

Election Report

Karin Kelsey reported incumbents John Grossmann, Colorado at large, Jerry Ranney, Denver, Ralph Liguori, El Paso, Marianne Spanier, Phoenix, and Darwin Afdahl, Tucson ran unopposed. Tom Shulman ran unopposed for the Las Vegas seat, incumbent Barbara Dunkley did not run for reelection. Art McHaffie defeated Evelyn Colson for the New Mexico at large position, and JoAnne Lowe was elected from Phoenix to complete the term vacated due to the resignation of Lesley Davis.

A motion was made, seconded and passed to ratify the elections and seat the new board members.


Election of Officers

The following were nominated, seconded and elected unanimously:

            President – Carolyn Newcomb

            Vice President - David Zapatka

            Secretary – Bonnie Bagley

            Treasurer – Jerry Ranney

            Election Secretary – Karin Kelsey

                                                                                                                                           Approval October 2011 Minutes

A motion was made to approve the October minutes. The motion was seconded and passed unanimously.


Secretary’s Report                                                                                                                           Bonnie Bagley pointed out the paperwork pertinent to the meeting is in the folders, as well as the updated Policy Manual. Flyers advertising the 2012 D17 Regionals are available. A current D17 Board Member Roster will be sent out with the minutes.


Treasurer’s Report

Jerry Ranney reported surplus of $12,058 for 2011 versus a budgeted loss of $1,445. D17 regional attendance was up, therefore sanction fees exceeded budget. The Western Conference increased their subsidy to the district due to increased STaC income and ScoreCard ad income was more than budgeted. Expenses were $2,223 over budget due to the one-time increased GNT player subsidy and the unit loss subsidy for the Colorado Springs Regional. The 2011 year-end balance was $155,686.49. Jerry moved the three Certificates of Deposit (CDs) from Wells Fargo to First Bank. They are laddered at 1, 3 and 3.5 years. The NABC fundraisers for the 2012 Phoenix NABC and the 2014 Las Vegas NABC netted $5,463.  A motion was made to approve the treasurer’s report. The motion was seconded and passed.

Jerry presented the 2012 budget, initially projecting a $275 surplus. The budget was amended decreasing the sanction fees from the 2012 Phoenix Regional to agree with the Phoenix tournament budget. A motion was made to approve the amended budget showing a projected loss of $1,502. The motion was seconded and passed.

Current Regional

Darwin Afdahl reported the table count is up 250 tables and he has heard no complaints. Carolyn complimented Steve Reynolds on the District/Unit Reception and noted it should be made clear the reception is for the unit volunteers as well as the D17 Board.


National Board

Bonnie Bagley reported the Spring Memphis NABC starts March 15. There will be a kickoff of ACBL’s 75th Anniversary Friday evening with entertainment, abundant cake and flowing champagne. Most board motions submitted are housekeeping items, clarifying the codification. The Strength of Field Motion that would change masterpoint awards for regional and sectional games will be a hot issue. A motion to revise the reduction of Junior and Youth entries at Nationals has drawn a lot of attention. The GNT/NAP/Special Events Task Force will meet and brainstorm, with the goal being to get a concrete motion strengthening the NAP and GNT events ready for the board meeting at the Summer NABC in Philadelphia. 

Bonnie reported D17 membership at the end of January was 9,001. A district which maintains membership over 9,000 may be allotted an additional regional. It would help to retain D17 membership numbers if snowbirds would keep their unit membership in District 17 and just change their address.

Board of Governors

Darwin Afdahl reported there was a motion passed by the Board of Governors that masterpoints shall be awarded only for sanctioned games that follow the Laws of Duplicate Bridge. This motion will be on the agenda for the Board of Directors at the Spring NABC in Memphis. 

Western Conference

Tom Shulman stated the Western Conference Board met at the Palm Springs Regional in December. Tom and Bonnie Bagley were present, but John Van Ness was unable to attend because he broke his leg on the way to the meeting. Tom reported Western Conference finances continue to be healthy due to STaC revenue and regional sanction fees. The WC Board voted to remit $1,500 to the member districts (D17, D21 & D22). Planning for the ACBL Great Western Regional at Sea is well underway. Although the WC will receive no revenue, up to three WC board members will receive free passage – they will be the tournament coordinators. A proposal for a 2013 WC Regional at Sea will be submitted to ACBL. Tom announced that District 23 (Los Angeles) has expressed interest in joining the WC. The feasibility of their becoming a WC member will be studied. The next WC board meeting will be at the Monterey Regional in January 2013.

Executive Committee

Carolyn noted the Executive Committee approved the change of venue of the Phoenix 2012 Regional from the Talking Stick Resort to the Sheraton Crescent, since the Talking Stick Resort exercised their option not to renew.  The Executive Committee approved a revision of the Denver schedule to accommodate the GNTs at the Denver Regional.

Committee Reports

GNT Darryl Helton presented a summary of the clubs who held GNT qualification games in 2011. The majority of clubs and units are not active in promoting these qualifying games. The Colorado clubs are the major supporters. Darryl encouraged D17 board members to promote the GNTs. The D17 GNT finals will be at the Denver Regional Friday & Saturday (May 25 & 26) for Flight B & C and Friday through Sunday for the Open Flight and Flight A.

NAP Ralph Liguori announced the pairs who were second and third in Flight B are unable to attend the ACBL NAP Finals at the Memphis NABC. The fourth place pairs, Greg and Dawn Foltz, of Fort Collins will be going. All winners in Flight A and C will be participating at the Nationals.                             

I/N A discussion of the value of the postcards sent to I/N players ensued. JoAnne Lowe mentioned the US Postal Service had a postcard program. John Grossmann volunteered to label and stamp postcards for the Denver and Las Vegas Regionals.

By Laws Karin Kelsey is going to rewrite the Election Procedures for clarity reasons.

Charity Karin Kelsey questioned why the Phoenix NABC Fund Raiser Game is scheduled in April, which is Charity Month. Jerry Ranney explained the calendar is quite crowded and it is difficult to select times that do not conflict with something. The fund raiser for the 2013 Phoenix NABC was chosen for April 9-15, 2012 because the snowbirds would not have headed north yet.

Regional Tournaments Darwin Afdahl noted there are no schedules to be approved. Darwin stated the Regional Tournament Committee suggests that (except for the Mesa Senior Regional) Senior Pairs games be replaced by Stratified Pairs. The Denver and Las Vegas Regionals have done this for several years with few complaints. Tom Shulman said the feedback he has received is that players would play in the Senior Pairs because of the time (usually 10 am & 3 pm), not because it was a Senior event.                                                               

Darwin made a motion that a committee be formed to study the feasibility of D17 buying or renting electronic scoring machines so that all D17 Regionals have electronic scoring. The motion was seconded and passed. Carolyn appointed Tom Shulman to head such a committee.                                                    

ScoreCard Bonnie Bagley reported ScoreCard editors, Steve and Kitty Cooper have moved to San Diego, which although still in the Western Conference, is not in D17, it is in D22. Steve and Kitty would like to remain as ScoreCard editors. They will continue attending D17 Regionals and will continue to be a presence in D17. A motion was made, seconded and passed that Steve and Kitty continue to be the ScoreCard editors even though they now live in San Diego.

Tournament Coordination Marianne Spanier distributed the 2012 and 2013 tournament schedules.  Marianne noted that all tournaments for which she has received sanctions are on the schedule, but there are several changes to be made. David Zapatka will email corrected the updated 2012 and 2013.

Baldwin Plan David Zapatka reported the suggested changes to the revised Baldwin Plan have been made. There are three majors changes: the revised plan is not dictatorial, but more conciliatory; there is a provision for in kind donations to be counted for the hospitality requirement and and there is now a provision for entry fees to be increased or decreased upon request by the host unit with agreement by the D17 Board. David noted that with these changes, it is now appropriate to move from what was to what now is and rename the Baldwin Plan. After much discussion, a vote was taken of the four suggestions: The D17 Regional Tournament Plan, The Baldwin Plan, The Talking Stick Plan and The Sweetwood Plan. The winner is The District 17 Regional Tournament Plan. There was much discussion about specific wording of The D17 Regional Tournament Plan.  A motion was made to remove Betty Bratcher, who is going on disability and Tom Whitesides, who has retired, from the approved DICs and add Nancy Boyd, Tom Marsh and Su Doe. The motion was seconded and passed. A motion was made, seconded and passed to approve The D17 Regional Tournament Plan (attached).  Carolyn asked John Van Ness to write a history of The Baldwin Plan, which will be put on the website.

At this point, Tom Marsh, the DIC, joined the meeting. He reported the biggest problem is the need for more tables. More were brought in. Tom noted that the table count is up 23% over 2008 (2010 is not a good comparison since that tournament ran opposite the World Championships in Philadelphia), which is 282 more tables through Friday night (this is 61% over 2009). Tom said there is no way the tournament can grow in this facility, it cannot accommodate more tables. (note: there is a permanent free standing structure outside the hotel which can accommodate 100 tables; it has heating and cooling and is not subject to wind noise. This facility can be used in the future if necessary.) Tom noted the hotel staff is fantastic to work with.

Education No report

Unit Affiliations No report

Contract Review  John Van Ness reported the hotel contracts for the Colorado Springs 2013 and 2014 Regionals. They were acceptable. John agreed to produce a sample contract.

Appeals   No report                                                                                                                                         

Goodwill Carolyn stated the Goodwill Committee met and has two motions. First, by May 1st each year, each D17 Board Member may nominate one member to the Goodwill Committee. At the May or June D17 Board meeting each year the Goodwill Committee will present to the board these nominees for ratification. This motion passed. The second is to grandfather all D17 Aileen Osofsky ACBL Goodwill Committee members. This motion passed.

Web Site John Grossmann reported the logistical support from Kitty Cooper, the D17 website developer, has substantially decreased. Proficiency at updating and editing the website has increased. There can be a training session at the Denver and/or Las Vegas Regionals for anyone interested in helping with the website. Tom Shulman said it would be nice to have the D17 website formatted for a smart phone.

Finance Carolyn Newcomb asked Tom Shulman to audit the D17 2011 finances.

Old Business

The Old Business agenda item Baldwin Plan Revisions was covered above in the Committee Report.

Grants to Smaller Units Ralph Liguori said the impetus for this is that units which hold regionals have access to additional monies to fund unit programs and most smaller units will never be able to host a regional. A motion was made to establish a grant program for unit that do not host a D17 Regional and have not had one in the previous 5 years. Proposals from units should not exceed $1,000 and a total of $3,000 will be included in the 2012 budget. The motion was seconded and passed.

Job Descriptions Carolyn requested that job descriptions be updated and emailed to her.

Bid Boxes, Tables per Director and Mission Statement These will be on the agenda at the June D17 meeting in Las Vegas.

New Business

Regional Tournament Incentive Program David Zapatka reported he and Jay Whipple will set up an online demonstration of the program for the D17 Board members. David will notify the board members of the date and time.

Taos Request for Regional Carolyn Newcomb introduced Dennis Scott, from Taos, New Mexico, who presented an excellent proposal for a D17 regional in Taos, New Mexico, with folders for all the board members. Carolyn noted that the D17 regional schedule is full through 2017, but there is the possibility of having a regional using a United States Bridge Federation (USBF) sanction. D17 had a USBF sanctioned regional in Tucson in 2008. John Van Ness emailed the D17 Board about the possibility of a D17 regional in Vail, Colorado. Bonnie Bagley will check into the possibility of getting a USBF regional sanction.

Boulder Sectional Conflicts John Grossmann presented a letter from Barbara Yoshimura, president of the Boulder Unit. The Boulder Sectionals are held at the Boulder County Fairgrounds. The dates must be reserved well in advance and, if changed, the priority weekend could be lost. The Boulder Unit’s priority dates are the first Sunday in May and the fourth Sunday in October. In 2011, the Phoenix Regional was not held on the D17 Regional Priority Week and was held two weeks later, overlapping the Boulder 2011 October Sectional. This resulted in a 74 table loss and a financial loss of $2,368. The same conflict will occur with the Boulder 2012 May Sectional. The 2012 Mesa Regional was moved from its priority week and now overlaps the Boulder Sectional. Barbara is asking for some financial consideration.  Marianne Spanier said there should be no further conflicts, at least through 2017. A motion was made to reimburse the Boulder Unit $1,500. The motion was seconded and passed. 

Completed Tournament Reports

Phoenix JoAnne Lowe reported the table count was a phenomenal 2,499, a record for Phoenix. A surplus of $13,531 was realized. Phoenix is budgeting for 2,000 tables in 2013 due to the move back to the Sheraton Crescent. They are budgeting a loss of $3,000 because hospitality will be increased to give back some of what they received in 2011. Leon Lowe, the Phoenix unit president, assured D17 the District will not be asked for reimbursement.

Albuquerque  Carolyn reported for Karin Kelsey, who had to leave the meeting to catch a plane, that the Albuquerque Regional had 1,903.5 tables, a loss of 122.5 tables from the record setting 2,026 tables in 2011. A surplus of $13,194.83 was realized.

Future Tournaments

All future tournaments are on track as scheduled.

There being no further business a motion was made, seconded, and carried to adjourn the meeting at 12.05 pm

The next meeting will be Saturday, June 23 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Riviera Hotel and Casino at 8:00 a.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Bonnie L. Bagley

Attachment:  The D17 Regional Tournament Plan


District 17 Regional Tournament Plan

(D17 RTP)

ACBL District 17 offers ACBL Unit #___ (the host Unit) the authority to plan, manage and operate the regional bridge tournament which is scheduled for ___________________________ at the _____________________________in _____________________________________.

The D17 RTP is a cooperative vision shared by District17 and its host Units. 

Our shared vision is to serve our mutual members by providing regional tournaments that meet the following objectives:

  1. Provide comfortable, well-lit playing environments.
  2. Establish event schedules designed to meet the desires of our membership.
  3. Ensure consistently high levels of hospitality and entertainment.
  4. Set affordable entry fees and playing site room rates.
  5. Welcome new players with an I/N program that encourages ACBL membership, including a speaker program and/or other educational and skill development opportunities.
  6. Run professional tournaments with competent directors and consistent conditions of contest.
  7. Create an environment of goodwill for our players and appreciation for our volunteers.
  8. Allow opportunities for host Units and District 17 to create surpluses which will allow them to remain fiscally viable and able to return benefits to their members. 

To accomplish our shared objectives, the D17 RTP outlines best practices, standard operating procedures, fee structures, shared expectations and advertising and charity game parameters.

General ACBL / District 17 Tournament Policies

Tournaments are conducted in accordance with regulations established by the ACBL, Western Conference and District17 which include:

  • Tournaments are non-smoking.
  • Tournaments are zero-tolerance as outlined by the ACBL.
  • Periodic hospitality breaks are provided.
  • All electronic devices are turned off during all sessions of play.  

Best Practices and Standard Operating Procedures

A Unit may request being added to the District 17 schedule and has the right to refuse a District 17 invitation to hold a regional. District 17 authorizes a host Unit to hold a District 17 regional tournament on a priority week within a calendar month. The exact timing of the tournament within the District 17-authorized window is proposed by the Unit through their District Representative and approved by the District 17 Board of Directors.

  1. The host Unit will obtain a sanction number from the ACBL for the tournament at least three years in advance of the event.
  2. With support of the D17 board, the host Unit may request a specific director from the D17 approved director list when applying for the sanction.  The DIC appoints the tournament staff in consultation with the tournament chair.  Directors currently approved as DICs by and for District 17 regionals are Su Doe, Matt Smith, Nancy Boyd, Tom Marsh and Gary Zeiger.
  3. Prior to signing a hotel contract, the host Unit submits the hotel contract to the District 17 Contracts Review Committee, who will review the contract and provide feedback to the host Unit in order to help negotiate the most favorable contract. The contract is signed by the Unit and is legally the Unit's responsibility.
  4. The host Unit submits a proposed budget and schedule of events to the District Representative and the District 17 Regional Tournament Committee Chair for review and comment at least eight months in advance of the tournament.  Upon final agreement of these items by the District 17 board, no changes in the schedule, other than cosmetic changes, are made without further agreement by the District 17 board. 
  5. The D17 RTP is offered to the host Unit after the District 17 Board of Directors has approved the schedule and budget. The host Unit accepts or rejects the D17 RTP within 60 days of the date it is signed by the District 17 President.  Acceptance is assumed when this document is signed and dated by the host Unit President and the District 17 President and returned to District 17 Secretary, Bonnie Bagley, 7285 Ross Dr., Colorado Springs, CO  80920-3350. 
  6. The tournament flyer is created by a host Unit and is shared with District 17 Representative, ________________, for review and agreement.  Tournament flyers include the schedule of events including the NAP and the GNT if applicable, hotel information, stratifications, ACBL sanction number and information for the Director in Charge, Tournament Chair and Partnership Chair(s).  
  7. The host Unit produces tournament flyers after the District 17 Board of Directors has agreed to the schedule of events.  It is recommended this is done at least two NABCs before the actual tournament.
  8. Hand records are provided for all pair events. These hand records are provided by the ACBL and reproduced by the Directing staff.

10. District 17 arranges to provide pre-dealt hands for all pair games.  Dan Williams, bigelk1999@gmail.com, is the District 17-assigned dealer and bookseller.  The host Unit provides a secure room for the dealing of pre-dealt hands.  Mr. Williams pays for his own sleeping room. 

11. The host Unit determines the amount and distribution of the prize awards including section tops.

12. The host Unit provides a Regional Daily Bulletin newsletter listing the results of the prior day’s events.  Go to d17acbl.org for examples of Daily Bulletins.

13. A notice is published two times (one of which must be a Friday or Saturday) in the Regional's Daily Bulletin advertising the next District 17 regional. This notice is provided free of charge and should be clearly visible. The host Unit may request copy from the Publicity Chair of the upcoming Regional.

14. The host Unit cleans, replaces missing or damaged parts, and forwards District 17 bidding boxes as directed to the next tournament site or to Las Vegas.  District 17 will reimburse the host Unit for shipping charges.

15. The host Unit submits a detailed financial report to the District 17 Treasurer within sixty (60) days of the tournament’s completion. The District 17 Treasurer reviews the report and reconciles any discrepancies with the Unit Treasurer or Unit Tournament Chair. A copy is forwarded to the District 17 Finance Committee for review and the District 17 Secretary for inclusion in the Board Meeting packets. 

Fee Structures

  1. For players whose ACBL dues/service fees are paid up, entry fees for all events are $11.00 per person per session. For all others, entry fees are $13.00. Dues/service fees paid at the time the entry is purchased qualify for the $11.00 fee. Entry fees for I/N events are determined by the host Unit.  Sanction charges still apply.  Entry fees may be increased or decreased upon request of the host Unit and agreement by the District 17 board.
  2. The ACBL sanction fee is $4.16 per table. The Director-in-Charge will remit these fees to ACBL with the tournament report. *****The ACBL sanction fee is subject to change. 
  3. The District sanction fee is $5.50 per table.  This fee is calculated after subtracting tables for Charity pairs and free fills.  The Director-in-Charge calculates these fees at the conclusion of the tournament.  The host Unit is responsible for sending all District 17 free play slips, a copy of the Tournament Worksheet and a check for the sanction fee within seven days following the conclusion of the tournament to the District 17 Treasurer: Jerry Ranney, 5743 Willowbrook, Morrison, CO 80465-2236.
  4. District 17 pays for pre-dealt hands under an arrangement with Dan Williams who can be reached at bigelk1999@gmail.com.  The host Unit helps Dan Williams get the hotel staff rate if one is available.
  5. The host Unit receives reimbursement from District 17 for the following items:
  • When the District Finals of the GNT or NAP are held at the Regional Tournament, the host Unit is reimbursed $600 to cover the cost of room use, supplies, hospitality and caddies for the event. All other costs are paid directly by the District.
  • If a District 17 Board meeting is held at the Regional Tournament, District 17 reimburses the Unit for the cost of the continental breakfast at the District Board meeting, if applicable. The District pays the Unit reimbursement of up to $2,000 for the District/Unit Reception, or actual costs, if less than $2,000.
  • The District reimburses the Unit up to $1,000 for providing additional hospitality for the I/N program.

These reimbursements are sent to the Unit Treasurer when the final tournament financial report is received by the District 17 Treasurer.

  1. The Western Conference sanction fee is $2.25 per table and is remitted to the Western Conference Treasurer: Tom Shulman, 7146 Palmyra Drive, Las Vegas, NV 89117 at the conclusion of the tournament. 
  2. The host Unit is responsible for all expenses including advertising, entertainment, hand records, hospitality, photography, prizes, staff and supplies.
  3. All agreements/reimbursements with vendors are between the host Unit and the vendors.
  4. A minimum of $5.00 per table is spent on hospitality/entertainment. These expenses may include souvenirs, scrip, prizes, trophies, seminars, chits, hospitality desk supplies, parties, entertainment, dinner subsidies, bar and parking expenses when available to all players.  With the exception of restaurant and other retail store discount coupons or gift cards, documented in-kind contributions count toward the minimum $5.00 hospitality requirement. The host Unit and District 17 Tournament Committees both agree on the value of in-kind contributions prior to applying them toward the $5.00 per table minimum.

10. The cost of cleaning, replacing missing or damaged cards and shipping the bid boxes to the next regional site is reimbursed to the host Unit by District 17.

11. In the event of an unusual loss due to circumstances beyond the control of the host Unit, District 17 will share the financial loss, provided best practices, processes and standard operating procedures outlined in this agreement have been adhered to in a responsible manner. 


  1. The equivalent of a one-page Western Conference Contract Bridge Forum ad, which can be divided as the Unit decides, one to include the schedule of events, is required.
  2. Written articles describing the Regional activities may be submitted to the Scorecard editors for inclusion in the District's newsletter. All advertising and articles are reviewed and agreed upon by the District Representative prior to submission. Copy for these ads are received prior to the 5th of the month preceding that in which the ad is to appear and are sent to District 17 editors: Steve & Kitty Cooper, 11070 Valle Vista Rd., Lakeside, CA  92040, d17editors@contractbridgeforum.com.  
  3. Advertising in the ACBL Bulletin is optional.  Additional information is available at advertising@acbl.org and on page four of the ACBL Bulletin.

Charity Game

  1. One charity game is required with a minimum of $7.75 per table payable to the ACBL Charity Foundation or any other IRS-approved tax exempt charitable organization of the host Unit's choice. It is usually most convenient to hold this event on the evening prior to the first full day of the tournament.  Two charity games may be held.  If two are held, one benefits an ACBL-appointed charity.  If two are held, they are afternoon and evening sessions.  Only one charity game is exempt from District 17 sanction fees. Knockouts and team games do not qualify as charity games.    
  2. One charity game is exempt from Western Conference and District 17 sanction fees. If a local charity is designated as the recipient, the Director-in-Charge must include, in the tournament report, the name of the charity to which the proceeds are being donated.

If you have any questions, need clarification or assistance, please contact the D17 RTP Committee Chair, Allen Johnson at 307.635.9409, bdkjohn1@gmail.com or Carolyn Newcomb at 303.979.9409, carolynnewcomb@yahoo.com.

Sign and Date on the Appropriate Spaces Below.

____________________________President, District 17        _________   _______ Date

____________________________Unit ____   President       _____________  ____Date

____________________________Tournament Chair                        __________________Date

____________________________District Representative     __________      _____Date

(updated 3/18/2012)


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