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Seneschal's letter for the December Acorn

Poster: Beth Morris <bmorris@access.digex.net>

Gentle friends,

A reminder - annual seneschal reports are due to the regional seneschals
(not to me!) by January 15th!

As you may have noticed from the various recent Acorn missives, officer
reporting seems to be at an all-time low in Atlantia.  This is bad for
several reasons.  

First, if the reports are ones (such as the financial reports,
end-of-year reports, etc) that need to be sent on up to the national
officers, then the whole kingdom report is held back or has to be sent
up incomplete.  This is A Bad Thing (tm).  Our kingdom is not held in
the greatest respect at the national level due to recent problems with
reporting and officers,
and we'd really like to keep our (collective) nose clean for a while.

Second, if reports are not submitted, promptly and correctly, then each
local officer risks the status of their entire local group.  As you may
have gathered from the recent letters, I am definitely not averse to
weeding out groups without the necessary activity level for viability. 

There aren't that many required offices for a Canton or Shire (currently
three, probably soon to be four - Exchequer will probably soon become a
required office), and, having held virtually all of those offices, the
reports just aren't *that* complicated.  Please take advantage of the
resources available to you - if you're having
*problems* with a report (getting numbers to balance, getting event info
from an autocrat, etc), contact your kingdom superior - we're here to
help you!  Several officers will be having 'office hours' at Unevent,
and private consultations can easily be arranged.

Wouldn't you hate to be the officer responsible for getting
your group suspended?  If you are a local officer and you aren't good at
the paperwork required by your office, or don't feel up to the
responsibility, that's okay.  Its not a sin or a crime.  But please find
someone else to hold the office as soon as possible, and then find
some other way to contribute to your local group.

Finally, it makes the job of being a kingdom officer *much* harder when
each officer must spend hours or days tracking down missing reports time
after time.  Remember, we (the Kingdom officers) are volunteers too, and
we are not reimbursed for our phone calls.  Tracking down missing
reports is tedious, time-consuming, frequently frustrating, and eats up
time that could be better spent on pro-active projects.

>From here on out, I will be endeavoring to publish in the Acorn and at
Cheapside a combined chart of all groups who are behind on any reports. 
Any group whose name appears on that report consistently will be
*seriously* considered for immediate suspension and dissolution.  If
there's not enough local interest to find four reporting officers, there
probably doesn't need to be a local group.  As of Halloween, we had
approximately 19 groups (out of 52) that were on the list of groups to
be proposed for suspension.  That's over one third of the groups in
Atlantia. That's embarrassing.  Let's try to clean it up, eh?

Looking forward to seeing you all at Twelfth Night, I remain,

Yours in frustrated service,

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