A few points:
1. The local club only gets about $55 per member from nationals (VENOM or not), and those payments have been getting harder and harder to get for at least some areas.
2. Bob says to stay a member and work for change within the club. Unfortunately, this is not possible. As we've seen with the changes in bylaws, etc, general members have basically no voice. Everything is set up to keep those already in power, in power. The last elections are a great example of that. If you question anything, or ask a 100% legitimate question, it is deleted and you are either banned or put on "secret probation" called "moderated status". A lot of my posts or PM's here are to help other owners with their questions. When you're "moderated", sometimes it takes days for your reply to get approved. All the while, the poor guy that you could have helped is stuck.
3. 100% transparency is needed on EVERYTHING! ALL financials should be open to at least the members. This was supposed to happen, but never did. The last excuse I heard was that it could be damaging if outsiders knew the finances. Why? If they are too good/bad, is that going to cause the Corvette club to come in and do a hostile takeover of the Viper Club (a non-profit)? ANother excuse is that the VPA is a "for profit" business and therefore the finances do not have to be made public. Um, the VPA is "wholly owned" by the VCA, right? And all of the profits go back to the club, right? Open the books and show how much is coming back to the club. Technically, the statement might be correct, but what if the VPA shows no "profit" after salaries and expenses? What good does it do the club? One of my favorite statements was how the VPA saved the VCA money by taking over Herb's salary. Again, what? If the VPA's profits went to the VCA and the VCA paid Herb, who is that any different than the VPA paying directly. It's still the same amount of money coming from the organization isn't it?
4. Audits. It keeps being stated that an independent audit was done and everything was in order. There is a very big difference in whether things pass an audit, and if they are truly correct or not. For example, all of the money going to the M's (VPA, management, Viper Magazine, VOI, etc), expenses paid by the club for others (travel, warehouse rental, etc), are completely legal and would pass an audit without issue. The problem is HOW those things were decided. Totally random numbers here, but what if instead of those expenses adding up to $500k/year (all going to insiders without a bid process), could be done by others for $250k/year. Like I said, the numbers are legal and pass an audit, but it doesn't make them right.
5. Volunteer vs paid. I have NO issue with people being paid for doing a ton of work for the club or VPA. What I do have a problem with is that it's all a secret and those positions/business were just given to friends and family of those in power. Everything (especially the magazine, management, storage of VPA parts, etc) should be put out to open bids to multiple vendors. If it happens to be that the current people WIN those bids (AND everything about those bids is disclosed and why choices are made), then great. Again, I have no problem with that. BUT that is NOT the way it is happening.
Basically, there needs to be a complete re-boot of everything and put everything on the table. OPEN elections where members have a voice. OPEN financials for VPA/VCA. OPEN communication without fear of persecution, banning, or deleted threads. The by-laws need to be thrown away and replaced with ones that do not allow one or two people to unilaterally make a decision on who stays/goes, etc. This CAN be a great club again and get a lot of the older, knowledgeable members AND vendors back. Unfortunately, I just don't feel there is any way for that to happen with some of the current people in place.