Board Meeting Highlights, September 2013

September, 2013

The following notes highlight discussion and action from the September 21-22, 2013, CAMFT Board of Directors meeting in Santa Barbara, CA.

(Note:  On Friday evening, September 20th, the CAMFT Board met informally with leaders from the Santa Barbara Chapter.   The “Board-to-Board” gatherings are intended to allow for interaction between state and local leaders when the CAMFT Board is meeting in a chapter’s area.)

The Board of Directors deliberated for approximately 12 hours over two days on a proposed member motion to repeal the July 2013 CAMFT bylaws.  The Board reviewed numerous member comments received, evaluated the input by CAMFT advisors, as well as discussed the merits of the proposed motion.  Before the deliberations, 12 CAMFT members spoke to the motion as well.  The Board deliberated over the matter and approved the following two motions:

“To approve the repeal of the current bylaws approved in July 2013 and reinstate the bylaws adopted in June 2009.  The Board’s approval is subject to voting members' approval by ballot.”

“To send the vote to the membership, regarding the bylaws, per the motion approved on September 21, 2013, for a December 4, 2013 election date.   December 5th and 6th to be designated ballot-counting days.”

The June 2009 bylaws and the July 2013 bylaws can be reviewed on CAMFT’s website. Both sets of the bylaws and an official ballot will to be sent to the membership by late October/early November 2013.  

CAMFT Connects Forums
The Board discussed the upcoming CAMFT Connects member forums on October 12 and October 19, 2013.  These meetings provide the opportunity for members to meet with colleagues and CAMFT leadership to offer meaningful and constructive input regarding the future of CAMFT. The Board is hopeful that the meetings will attract many diverse member views and contributions.  

Proposed Partnerships
The Board unanimously voted to provide student members professional liability insurance as a means of increasing the value of their CAMFT membership.   CAMFT will enter into a partnership with CPH and Associates to provide defense coverage of up to $1,000,000 per claim, and $3,000,000 annual aggregate.  There will be no fee to the student member.  CAMFT will provide more details once the policies are put into place. 

Committee Reports and Nominations
The Board received reports from the following Committees:  Strategic Planning Committee, Educational Foundation Board, Political Action Committee, Annual Conference and Continuing Education Committee, Ethics Committee, CE Provider Approval Program Task Force, Purview Committee, and Clinical Editorial Council.  

The Board approved the creation of the “Leadership Advisory Council,” which will be made up of four to seven prominent past leaders, to serve in an advisory capacity to the Board.  The Council will provide support and advice to the Board on evolving initiatives.  The term will be two years.

The Board appointed and approved the following CAMFT members to the CE Provider Approval Program Task Force:  Serge Aronow, Virginia Green, Bindu Khurana, Debbie Moorehead, Garry Raley, Debby Simmons, and Deena Soloman.  This Task Force will develop the policies and procedures which will govern the CAMFT CE Provider Approval Program.

The Board heard updates about the 2014 Annual Conference.  Next year’s 50th Annual Conference theme is, “The Gold Standard:  Integrating Mental Health and Community.”  There will also be a celebration of the 50th Anniversary of CAMFT.  

Executive Report
Cathy Atkins reported on staffing and operations at CAMFT.  The Board received reports on The Therapist, continuing education programs, marketing and public relations, and Chapter relations.  Ms. Atkins reported that as of September 19, 2013, CAMFT had 30,961 members.

In closed session, the Board and Ms. Atkins discussed CEO, Jill Epstein’s medical leave and long-term planning.  The Board directed Ms. Atkins to continue to manage the day-to-day operations of CAMFT until Ms. Epstein’s return in early 2014. 

Ms. Atkins discussed the production of new law and ethics videos featuring the CAMFT attorneys on topics such as working with children and dangerous patients.  Each law and ethics continuing education video will be available for members to purchase and view online to receive one CE hour. 

The Board discussed the current shortage of available attorneys to answer member calls due to a shortage in legal staffing based on current medical leaves.  Ms. Atkins reported that CAMFT recently added a new member to its legal team.  In addition, CAMFT will be hiring an additional attorney before 2014. 

The Board received a report on the 2013 Fall Symposium that is scheduled to be held on November 8-9, 2013 in Anaheim, CA.   The Symposium will offer two workshops each day, as well as six exhibiting tables by co-sponsors.

Ms. Atkins reported on the preparation for CAMFT’s golden anniversary next year.   Staff is developing innovative ways to commemorate CAMFT’s 50th anniversary and engage members in the celebration throughout 2014. 

As of August 1, 2013, the Federal PAC balance was approximately $93,000 and the State PAC balance was approximately $96,000.  

The reserve fund balance as of August 31, 2013 was approximately $5,700,000.  The purpose of the reserve fund is to ensure that the Association has the financial means to continue to provide critical support to its members during a short-term economic downturn, provide a source of capital to cover unanticipated temporary revenue shortfalls, and create the ability to fund long-term strategic initiatives.  The target level for reserves is set to be an amount equal to 15 months of the upcoming year’s budgeted expenses.  

The Board reviewed updates about the BBS and state/federal legislation.   CAMFT-sponsored SB 282 was signed by the Governor and SB 578 has been turned into a two-year bill to afford time for greater discussion with stakeholders.   

The Board discussed the BBS’s continued delay in processing applications and renewals.  Staff indicated that CAMFT is working with other mental health professional organizations, such as AAMFT-CA and NASW-CA, in an attempt to influence the Governor to allow an exemption to hire additional staff at the BBS.  In addition, the BBS has approached CAMFT to discuss the structure of MFT hours to determine and assess whether there is a way to minimize the complexity of the current requirements.  

Agenda Items Moved to December Board Meeting
Due to the hours devoted to deliberating the bylaws motion, several committee reports and policy proposals have been moved to the December 7-8, 2013 Board meeting.  Also moved to the December meeting, was the review and selection of 2014 legislative priorities.  

Next Board Meeting
The next Board meeting will be held December 7-8, 2013, at the Hotel Monaco San Francisco.   For more details, please visit the Board of Directors section of the CAMFT website.


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