On behalf of all the committee and staff at Hillarys Yacht Club we extend our best wishes and hope you all have a fun, sunny and memorable Easter.

While we do not want to be the Fun Police, the following advice has been received from the Department of Transport and is for your advice only:

“This Easter, the Department of Transport is urging boat owners to stay at home, where you can, and to play your role in limiting the spread of COVID-19 by postponing unnecessary boating activity.

The advice is very clear – you should stay in your home where you can to protect yourself and others from COVID-19 and from potentially spreading the disease. Only leave for essential activities such as work, shopping for food, exercise or medical appointments.

If your boating needs are essential and you decide to go out, social distancing rules apply – at the boat ramp and on your boat. You should only be on your boat with no more than one other person; or with family who ordinarily live in the same household as you.”

I would like to share an excerpt from my replies to emails received earlier this week. 

HYC is a club which is owned by every single member and ultimately the continuance is in the hands of its members, not the committees.

Membership and pen fees have always been supported by revenue raised from Functions, Training and Water Sport activities etc. This all stopped on 23 March 2020 and clearly it will be a significant time before any revenue from these sources will start to flow. Without going into specific numbers, the cancellation of numerous functions, training events and sport activities for the months of March to October run in hundreds of thousands of dollars in loss of revenue.

HYC is in a unique position where the Constitution decrees that the financial year shall be from May- April. The increase of pen fees that DOT impose on us occurred in July 2019 some 3 months after we set our fees in 2019. The same can be said for the Membership Fees which, under the Constitution, is the increase of our Utility index since 1 May 2019 to March 2020. The increases occurred in July 2019 some 3 months after our membership fees were set. 

As with most organisations our budget is set 12 months ahead. As most increases from Government and Utility Suppliers occur in July of each year, it leaves us in the same position year in year out. Unfortunately it is not possible to set fees on unknown increases which leaves us to set the increase on the past 12 months.
Renewal of memberships are vital if our club is to survive this unprecedented period in history that has impacted on most of us, be it individuals or organisations. I have no reservations in saying that the survival of Hillarys Yacht Club is clearly with each and every member to show support at a time when we need to remain united. Your chefs and bar staff have been innovative and remain focussed on providing all Members with a selection of cold takeaway meals and beverages, 7 days a week with hot take away meals being available Friday to Sunday. Your office staff are providing unconditional services to ensure that the options that you want are provided to you in a dignified and professional manner. 

We have sent out a number of notifications outlining that the expiry of the 2019-2020 November-April Food & Beverage Levy has been extended to 31 October 2020. The 2020-2021 levies will all expire on 30 April 2021. These are of course subject to review depending on the recovery progress from the COVID-19 pandemic. If you did not receive these emails and updates I apologise and if that is the case, please let me know so we can ensure that your email is on the distribution list.

In respect to membership and pen fees, several emails and posts have also been sent advising members that they should contact the office and discuss any payment plans they wish to enter into as we made the decision to provide a personal service on a one on one basis, rather than a one model fits all.

The management committee, a majority of whom are volunteers, have spent countless hours, week in and week out reviewing, realigning and providing input into some very difficult decisions with the primary focus being the longevity of Hillarys Yacht Club for all future members to enjoy, irrespective of what water sport activity they are engaged in.

My personal thanks to the individuals who stop for a chat in the club grounds, call in the office or send an email to provide feedback and advice. I thank you for taking the time in providing us with your thoughts and ideas. Without your communications it would be difficult to assess if we are going in the right direction.

To the band of volunteers who continue to attend the club and undertake tasks without any requests and directions, we personally thank you for your support and valuable time. You know who you are and while you are all quiet achievers and go about your tasks, you have been noticed!

One for the Arnold Schwarzenegger fans “ Did you hear about the lady whose house was infested with Easter Eggs? She had to call the eggs-terminators”

Stay Safe on and off the water!

Fred Gere, Commodore HYC