BCGA Elections – British Columbia Geocaching Assosiation

For the last few years the elections for the BCGA have been interesting. There has been controversy over the elections and this year is no different.

There was a problem in August when a Highways Manager banned caching along BC Highways. Groundspeak issued a ruling where no new caches could be placed along BC Highways. The problem was that the two reviewers for BC had a different interpretation of the new rule from Groundspeak. One took it to mean no caches placed within 50 m (164 ft) of any road in the Province. No one picked up on this and what it meant to caching. I figured out what it meant and posted about it. It would mean there would be no more caches placed in any urban area in BC as the caches would be too close to any road. Caching would be dead In Vancouver and the surrounding area.
I figured out that the complainant had no right to to issue this type ban as it has to come from the BC Minister of Highways.

I decided this was unacceptable and met with my Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) for BC. MY MLA got a ruling that resulted in some success with getting the ban lifted but not for the area the manager was in. Groundspeak didn’t want to pursue this more and asked me to let sleeping dogs lie.
I wanted to get this fully ironed out. I continued working with my MLA and the Deputy Minister was soon in contact. The Deputy Minister appointed a area Manager appointed at coming out with a new policy for BC. It later was decided the BC Parks wanted to get their rules revisited and a common policy would be put in place for BC.

The BCGA Board was very reluctant at joining me and insisted they could handle it. The was a lot of discussion on the BCGA boards by members who wanted the Executive to join me. They had no experience in this type of thing and claimed they had been working on this since the start, but had no answers. I had more answers in 1 week than they did in two months.
I have to say it was the President of the BCGA that finally contacted me and asked me to represent them in the meetings.

The real problem with boards such as the BCGA they don’t know how to deal with problems such as this. If they admit this by asking someone else then they are afraid it may show they shouldn’t be in office. The Prime Minister of Canada and the President of the USA have advisers to help them this should be no different for the BCGA Board. Boards need not be afraid of this, you use the best people to get the job done, tap into your resources.

I was asked many times during the process if I would run for the next election. I always said I would not because I felt I could do more on the outside than the inside. People said I could make the changes that would put some respect back in the BCGA.

I agreed to run for President of the BCGA and thus was nominated.

Canada is Governed on the British Parliamentary system.
Taken from –

Much of Canada’s parliamentary system, however, is also governed by unwritten constitutional conventions and customs. These are rules and practices regarding the operation of the Parliament, which have been developed incrementally over time, and have never been formally codified in writing. This does not mean they are any less binding – only that they are based upon historical practice instead of explicitly written principles.

This year we have multiple people being nominated for all positions.
One just has look at a City Council and you have to choose if you are running for Mayor, Council or School Board but you can’t run for all three. Some how the BCGA Board says this is the way it was done last year and no matter how much you point them to the bylaws, Roberts Rules of Order or Parliamentary rules they won’t listen The problem is the current BCGA Bylaws are vague on this.
The BCGA Bylaws say this under 26 – (3) Each office to be filled by ballot, electronic means or acclamation.
I have always taken that the President is an Office and the Vice President is and Office etc. this can be taken as each office has it’s own ballot.
If one goes the BC Society’s Act and look at the sample Bylaw under 26 -(2) Separate elections must be held for each office to be filled.
So the BC Society’s Act suggests this is the way.

If you go back and look at what I posted above from mapleleafweb and what it says is: This does not mean they are any less binding – only that they are based upon historical practice instead of explicitly written principles.
So little common sense is needed to look at this.

Roberts Rules of Orders is a book on parliamentary procedure and is commonly used by Society’s, Unions and clubs to name a few. The BCGA in fact uses it for it’s own Meetings. Yet some say my quoting it is incorrect because it is not listed in our bylaws, yet it has been used for meetings by the BCGA.

The way this election is being handled is not like anything I have seen or taken part in.

Roberts Rules and Orders says this:


Members should be alert to some undemocratic political practices in organizations. One example occurs if a person is elected and then resigns, the office is considered vacant, and the president or board fills it by appointment instead of having another election. Doing this may allow an unpopular or hand-picked candidate to get the office even though he or she was not elected.

I have to say I am very disappointed in the BCGA Executive on this matter.

If I am elected I can tell you that some major changes will be coming to the Bylaws for the BCGA.

I truly hope to bring changes such as the above and then education through caching 101, 201, 301, 401. These will include Beginning caching, Hiding a cache, puzzles, and the use of GSAK to name a few.

I want to bring people back into the BCGA membership and show them that a board can work together.

I hope to have your support. I encourage people to also get involved.

Please remember voting is between March 18 – 28 2012.

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