The IMBA Discussion

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MishaFuller
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Joined: 07/29/2016

Hello members! In February the board of directors received information from IMBA about planned changes to the Chapter program. This Chapter 2.0 is due to roll out April 1 and will significantly change the way chapters interact with and receive support from IMBA.

Others may have more info, or a better understanding of the details. Here is the best I can summarize:

  • + Annual Member fees are increasing from $35 to $49. (we have about 150 members)
  • + IMBA/DOD is a 60/40 split, non-negotiable unless we have paid staff.
  • + The Regional support staff is being replaced by national Subject Matter Experts, which will be fee-for-service
  • + Optional Regional Leadership Counsils: The details are unclear.
  • + Insurance:
    • - All chapters will be required to participate in a national insurance plan at a per-member rate (approximately $7 but depends on # of members).
    • - Only members will be covered at events  ---> this means we will have to purchase additional insurance in order to continue having our rides and events open to the public
    • - Only hand-tools will be covered on trail days --->  we use lots of machine tools, so again, we will have to purchase additional insurance to cover these.

Conclusion: We will be required to pay about $1,000 for their insurance program, and will still need to purchase additional insurance on top of that (somewhere between $1,000-$1,500 additional). We will no longer have regional support staff and will instead have to pay additional fees if we want help from their staff.

A pdf detailing the Chapter 2.0 program is attached.

The discussion has started about whether it serves the club's best interest to remain an IMBA "Chapter," or to downgrade our status to "Club." The sentiment expressed at February's board meeting was that imba is taking a pretty large chunk of change from our membership fees, and not giving us a whole lot in return. In the event we do change our affiliation level, the club would need to devise a new membership database system as well as obtain our own non-profit status, as that is currently achieved through IMBA Chapterhood. 

Let the discussion commence!

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IMBA_Chapter2p0_Jan2017 (1).pdf374.28 KB
jaewannabe
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Joined: 12/25/2011

I have a long winded PC version butt my short version is dump them!

see ya,

james the wannabe like..........

 

taylorj
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Joined: 03/11/2013

R.I.P IMBA.

What organizations are currently available that will serve only the Mountain Biking user group’s interests?  If no one, then what next; Start one?  
Perhaps this is over simplifying the situation, but can’t folks just sign off a waiver of all liability when they come out to trail work and riding events that fly the DOD banner?  

thanks

- Josh 

Brock
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Joined: 12/11/2011

I don't think anyone is sitting back wondering what my opinion is, but...having had to navigate the club through all of the growth and issues related to our subservient relationship with IMBA...I feel very strongly that being a chapter is the wrong use of our resources and voice.

Brock...

 

I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself.

MishaFuller
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Joined: 07/29/2016

I think you are far from alone in this opinion. I have yet to hear any strong arguments in favor of remaining a chapter.

Of interest to me is, what would that separation require? Do we have members and volunteers willing to take on the stuff that IMBA is currently doing for us? I.e, membership database creation and management, non-profit paperwork filing, and similar administrative tasks that IMBA chapterhood currently eliminates the need for.

bethdayton
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Joined: 03/03/2017

We are having the same discussion up here at SATA in Salem.  Luckily, we already have non-profit status so we don't have to deal with that, and we are looking at ways to manage membership.  Some sort of Oregon consortium or alliance of MTB clubs might be the way to go.

 

Brock
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Joined: 12/11/2011

I'm no longer on the board so cannot speak to what they're willing to do, but perhaps SATA would be willing to allow DOD to use its non-profit status until such time as DOD can get its own? Just thinking out loud.

Brock...

 

I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself.

Stevemz
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Joined: 12/27/2011

It doesn't seem like IMBA is trying hard to remain relevant. What is NW Trails Alliance doing?

 

Brock
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Joined: 12/11/2011

Stevemz wrote:
It doesn't seem like IMBA is trying hard to remain relevant. What is NW Trails Alliance doing?

 

They're doing exactly what they have done since forming: whatever the controlling minority sees as best for their local interests.

Brock...

 

I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself.

DirtDart
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Joined: 03/28/2014

Dump 'em.  If IMBA was at all relevant anymore, they'd have already put out a release in opposition to this:

https://www.singletracks.com/blog/mtb-news/oregon-crater-lake-wilderness-proposal-would-eliminate-treasured-mountain-bike-access/

MaxSteel
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Joined: 12/27/2011

Since IMBA stopped advocating for mountain bike access...I stopped supporting IMBA.  

Paul Timm

DOD/Worker Bee

"Let us ride"

Mudflaps
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Joined: 12/30/2011

Over the years, IMBA has degraded to a lesser advocacy organization than they once were. They haven't stood up when they should have. Screw 'em, I say.

Tim

tillikum
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Joined: 01/19/2015

The mountain biking scene in Oregon is robust enough to thrive without IMBA.  Let's keep our money and energy here.  Dump IMBA!

 

Davey Sprockett
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Joined: 01/04/2012

Adios, IMBA. (Huh, I just renewed my IMBA membership about a month ago. Whatever.)

--Davey

Davey Sprockett

King of the Wild Front Tire

Time to ride

xophere
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Joined: 03/03/2015

Yeah I would much rather support the local groups for that kind of money.  I haven't reup'd for that very reason that I didn't see any point.  Would rather give money and fund raisers and shuttle days.

jaewannabe
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Joined: 12/25/2011

SATA has made their decision:

 

Salem Area Trail Alliance

 

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Designing, building, and maintaining non-motorized trails for health enhancing recreational opportunities while preserving and improving our local green spaces.

Join SATA or renew your membership here.

 

Dear Friends and Members-

After 18 months of discussion with SATA members, several meetings with IMBA staff, and very careful deliberation by the SATA Board of Directors, I wanted to let you know that SATA has decided to withdraw its Chapter status from the IMBA Chapter Program.

SATA partnered with IMBA in 2013. In 2013, the IMBA Chapter program was a good fit for SATA and an important first step – the program and its staff helped to articulate SATA’s mission and brand and provided important infrastructure support (e.g., general liability insurance, training, and a member management database system). IMBA has made several substantial changes since 2013, including hiring a new executive director (Dave Wiens) and reducing overall program staff – including Chapter Program staff. Since 2013, SATA has worked with four different IMBA Chapter Regional Directors and two Associate Regional Directors.

The Board believes it’s time to move on. SATA has grown and matured since 2011 because of your support – thank you!  What does this change mean for you and your IMBA/SATA membership?

First, let me underscore that I personally support the overall mission of IMBA. I will retain my IMBA membership for the foreseeable future. I had the great pleasure of attending the National Bicycle Summit in Washington D.C. with IMBA staff several years ago – they do important trail advocacy work at the national and international levels. If you have recently joined IMBA or renewed your IMBA/SATA membership it will stay in place for 12 months from your joining date. However, as of April 1st, 2017your membership will only be with IMBA, not SATA.

Our goal is to open our new membership program by May 1st, 2017 – we are working diligently on a new membership portal. To ease the transition, SATA’s basic individual membership fee will be $5 during 2017, regardless of your IMBA membership status. The SATA only membership fee will be $30 (Individual) and $50 (Family) beginning Jan 1, 2018. 100% of your membership dollars will go directly to SATA. In the past, we shared your SATA/IMBA membership fee with IMBA. IMBA received 60% and SATA received 40%. IMBA individual membership fees will be increasing in 2018. Your membership dollars are, and will continued to be, used for SATA’s annual operating costs including general liability insurance (we can’t build trails without this critical line item), purchasing and maintaining tools, website hosting, and membership database services.

SATA is extremely optimistic and excited about the future of trails in the region. Several exciting trail projects are coming online or in the “hopper” that we can’t wait to share more details about with you!

Again, thank you for your continued support. Please send your questions and comments to salemtrails@gmail.com

Sincerely,
Jeff McNamee
President, SATA
 
 

 
 

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see ya,

james the wannabe like..........

 

Davey Sprockett
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Joined: 01/04/2012

That's a good letter.

Davey Sprockett

King of the Wild Front Tire

Time to ride

slowleego
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Joined: 12/26/2011

Very well written, and covers all the points. Our board is also examining all the factors, including going it alone without IMBA. Jeff and I are setting up a phone conversation this week to look at the particulars.

 

Lee

sibiliayoung
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Joined: 04/23/2015

Dennis Sibilia-Young

taylorj
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Joined: 03/11/2013

Hi All,

Did the DOD ever make a decision regarding staying or leaving IMBA for 2018?
 

- Josh 

TravisN000
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Joined: 07/12/2017

I am also curious as to the IMBA status..  been riding a bit over the summer with the kids and want to give a little back.  I was trying to sign up for a family membership yesterday and kept getting errors on IMBA; sounds like I should wait so more of my money goes where it belongs... the work you guys do is appreciated!

 

EDIT / UPDATE..  It was suggested by another rider that I just drop cash in a collection jar at a local event, so I came back to check the scheduled of events and found the "Donate" link at the top of the page.  Would it be an appropriate suggestion that people use the paypal link there ( which also allows for automated recurrent monthly donations) in lieu of the IMBA membership for the time being?

Brock
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Joined: 12/11/2011

I'm very curious where the DOD landed on this as well. I know where it was...then wasn't then was again, however there's been nothing recent. I've seen nothing from IMBA that would persuade me to give them any...any money.

FWIW, donating directly to DOD whether thru the link on here or at an event keeps 100% of the doigh local and helpful.

Brock...

 

I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself.

slowleego
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Joined: 12/26/2011

The DOD board took a "wait-and-see" approach to IMBA's restructuring efforts during this past year-hoping they would add some clarity and concise programs, along with hearing from a variety of members on the issues regarding staying or leaving the organization.

After attending the Oregon Mtn. Bike conference, and listening to the state of IMBA from
the new executive director Dave Weins, I heard little that would make any difference for our clubs concerns or direction. (This is my opinion only)

Several things stuck out to me that I feel will be issues for club members:

1. Pro-E bike. Dave stated that IMBA wants e-bike access to most trails currently used by mtn. bikes.

2. No Wilderness access. Once again, and this has been IMBA's view for awhile, they are not going to help other organizations pursue any access to wilderness trails.

3. Downsizing management. I just received another IMBA blast that they have fired the regional representatives. Losing this contact point makes it more difficult to have questions answered and have regional/state concerns addressed promptly and with attention to what the region chapters are looking for.

4. All services now are "pay to play". While the 50/50 split is gone, anything a chapter is looking for from database management to trail building consultations is done for a fee. (I asked about the fees for certain services like membership management, and they could not give me a figure yet)

So what's next? Leave or Stay?

The Board will vote on the issue at the December board meeting.

If you have more questions or concerns, leave them here, or come by the board meetings in November or December.

Thanks for your time.

Lee

DOD Board Chairperson (and all-around nice guy)

 

taylorj
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Joined: 03/11/2013

Two thumbs down for IMBA.  

DOD_DIY.png

- Josh 

Dennis
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Joined: 09/12/2017

Thanks for the work.

1) Please pass along - I won't be donating to IMBA anymore unless they change stance on E-bikes.  E bikes are fine for commuting around town.  Not on trails. (my opinion - this single issue will be the death of IMBA - it will be a PR nightmare and a loosing position. IMBA might as well advocate motorcycle use on mtb trails because that is how the public will see Ebikes on trails.  A motor is a motor - electric or fuel...)

2) Thank you for serving.

3) Please pass along - I looked at IMBA website - I could not find any position statements of any sort.  They should really consider making public their policy positions.  They are good at asking for my money, they've been very bad at telling me why, or what they might do with member dollars.

jaewannabe
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Joined: 12/25/2011

Unfortunately even for all the good they have done for our sport, sometimes there comes a time to part ways. You all know what SATA decided to do, I find it hard to continue to support an organization that clearly has lost sight of what brought it to be, supporting those whose efforts are primarily at the grass roots level.  I have a poster hanging in my garage that is actually a IMBA poster, but I have modified it because they don't stand for us anymore.

As someone who has issues with pedaling up hills I can see the attraction to e-bikes, never rode one but I do shuttle whenever I can so......, but to eliminate the local reps and not to pursue bike access in wilderness is just wrong by me........just saying.

IMG_7401.JPG

see ya,

james the wannabe like..........

 

LostInTheTrees
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Joined: 12/27/2011

I think it's perfectly reasonable to drop affiliation with IMBA. With the possible exception of E-bikes though, everything they support we do too. They just don't support some additional things that we do support. They are still allies, just not as good as we would wish.

As for the E-bike thing. I just turned 68 and I can foresee the day when many trails will become impossible without a boost. Allowing e-bikes that are below a certain power level strikes me as OK. Banning all E-bikes strikes me as just like the Sierra Club trying to ban all users not just like them.

That said, E-bikes will get more powerful. If it's nothing but a quiet motorcycle, then that's obviously something that doesn't belong on trails. So there should be limits on them. (Yes, I know motos are allowed on many trails. I dislike that intensely.)

Bob Carlson

Tucson AZ

mattk5170
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Joined: 03/03/2012

https://www.imba.com/blog/supporter/imba-updates-emtb-position-statement

just got this email.. sounds like they are waffling on their EBike position.. I think the land manager have taken a pretty firm stand against Ebikes and you think we would want to do the same.. Good article on MTBR as well on what they've been doing in the Seattle area(Evergreen Trail Aliance).. they have not been affiliated with IMBA for a long time as they don't see any benefit, all while crankin out tons of new trails... that's my two cents...bye IMBA

Matt Kincaid 

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