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LindaL

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Like Jill said, I do feel for those involved and it saddens me that one person's mistake has cost a lot of other people not to be able to go to Nationals...BUT, if you go to Nationals every year (and even if this was your first year), when you get the premium/entry forms you see right there in CAPS and UNDERLINED that entries MUST be postmarked by July 25th. What part of that is hard to understand? If you are worried it won't get postmarked in time, mail it in on July 24th...You have enough time to get entries in by the entry close date. If you make exception for one, you MUST make exceptions for others.

I agree that a rule change to include a 1 day grace period or a "penalty" for those entries not postmarked in time may be in order.

(ETA: I had seen this on FB, but do not know who it involves...but I'm nosey so if anyone knows and would like to PM me who it is, I'd appreciate it....
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Minimor

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So if they were to extend the deadline to August 15th and then more can enter if they wish, what happens when two groups of people have some problem that results in their envelopes being marked August 16th or maybe August 20th? Are they then going to be allowed to enter anyway? Extend the deadline once. Extend it again?

When does the program get printed? Can all horses be put into that program yet? The rules do require that all entries be in the program.
 

Jill

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Holly, it seems like our thoughts are somewhat parallel on this matter.

Regarding a "Grace Period", I think:

  • It should not be retroactive
  • It would really just become a later deadline... and we'd still have people, who for whatever reason, miss the mark.
  • It would not change a thing going forward

When I have something important that must be delivered on time, I send it UPS or Fed-ex -- and I track to verify it was delivered on time. I know that I would be very devastated if I had planned on my horse showing at Nationals and those hopes were dashed by error, oversight, or carelessness on the part of another. Whether or not it's easy to empathize or feel sorry for those involved is NOT the issue.

We all make choices and we do, in fact, control how our entries are delivered. If we decide to let someone else handle our entries, that's our choice. And if it's a trainer that we've paid pre and all season to prepare our horse of this event, and the trainer falls short... I really wouldn't want to be the horse owner nor the horse trainer.
 
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allaboutminis

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Gosh, you know, it's hard not to feel empathy for what has been outlined... but I do also feel that rules are rules.

We all have our own set of circumstances and personal demands, but this is a black and white RULE. When exceptions are made, it really can open of the door for discrimination and favoritism. It's not a good situation, and I wouldn't want to be involved, but my feeling is that the entry deadline rule is not something that is foggy or indistinct.

Do I feel sorry for those involved? Yes.

Do I think the rules should be bent? .... Regretfully, no.

Thank you Jill! Some will not understand that! But there again people should of made sure that their stuff was sent in on time! It is that big of a deal that you are stalled with each other. I bet anything this will not happen next year! Just because you sent them to a friend does not mean that was on time! Rules are rules and they need to be followed!
 

Minimor

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I agree Jill; when it is something as important as Nationals and the deadline is firm, you mark your calendar--actually when it is something so important I mark my calendar a week ahead--that way if I forget to get my paperwork together earlier I see that calendar note and still have time to get everything prepared and finished/mailed before the actual deadline.

And we all know what they say about how to handle something you want done right--do it yourself. If someone chooses to trust another to get their entries in, that is a choice that is made, and choices have consequences.
 

RayVik

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I think this goes far deeper then just the compassion of the individual's situation and ask all to consider that the integrity of our national show is at consideration. Those of us fortunate enough to enter in competition for recognition of our animals seek the confidence they measure up to any awards earned . To receive any such award in the absence of all those deserving puts a shadow on their merit.  Granted those seeking some advantage by way of cheating or malice should be penalized and certainly rules are created to prevent or enforce such circumstances. In this case consider the reasons for the existence of the rule and then consider what should be the penalty for breaking it. It seems only prudent to consider what advantage might be obtained by this violation and having first taken that consideration take into account do what is nessacary to  return the balance of fairness to all the competition.  Fortunately I am not in a position to make the final decision but I will be affected by it as will our entire registry and national show so I appeal to those making the decision to consider more then just the obvious and look beyond this being simply a rule that has been broken and consider a penally based on fairness to this rules existence and purpose and not just its technical violation with a sense of establishing fairness and not just punishment. 

It's not as though this rule or  changing it is a unknown concept first we have a national show for a segment of this organization that requires no pre qualifying no limits in how or when a horse can be entered for youth or otherwise basically show up with a horse and enter and show and many times when any change was proposed to those requirements or lack of all sort of comments come forth like it can't grow or it will lose money or it's not in our best interest. Plus given this open door policy on entries shows it  does and can work and can be handled successfully.  Next changes have been made in rules retroactive many times just as recent as last year in changing the dates for area shows to allow a date for congress. That rule affected the entire organization but was changed after the fact to allow the circumstances to work so I wonder where we draw the line here especially given the impact and intent of what blindly following the written rule in this case will have. 

Yes it is a very clearly written rule and yes it has been broken and we can apply it as such and EVERYONE suffer it's impact or we can look to its purpose and address it as to what and why it's intend is and make adjustments and penalties to make it fair

I certainly could be wrong but administration and cost to process entries to the largest small equine event in the world  seems the only reason for this rule as what unfair advantage is obtained by a horse or competitor in the absence of this rule which is not present in our other national show which does not have this limitation. 
 

dreamlandnh

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All the exhibitors that were wanting to be stalled together were able to get their entries to the one person to mail them in, it is not their fault that the one Post Office didn't have a functioning machine to post mark the envelope. If anyone of the people that are saying to follow the rules were in these peoples place they would be speaking differently. Yes, there are rules BUT think of the bigger picture.

If the one person that was to mail them in has said they will accept that it was their fault, fine this person and not the rest.

Are the ones that say no don't let them show just worried about the ribbon?

I myself say let them all show with a fine. I'm there to have fun, enjoy my minis and make new friends, I have told my daughter that if she gets a ribbon at Nationals it is just icing on the cake and not the reason she is there.

I'm in another organization and we had YOUTH that didn't get forms in, in time but did we say sorry you can't show...NO we gave them a "fine" and let them show so that they can learn from this.

We have learned that these rules need to looked at and corrected. Make it easier for those that would like to be stalled together can be and not make one person carry the weight of getting everything out. Add a line to entry form that says who you would like to stable with or near.
 

drmatthewtaylor

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As I am sure that I do not have all of the pertinent information dealing with this issue, then I will not comment about it specifically. But, as a member of the ASPC I am a co-owner in the business of the Club and I think this situation brings up many questions that need to be explored to improve business.

1) No tolerance policies are bad. Life is full of gray areas and pretending otherwise produces rules/punishments that get toddlers police records because they brought a toy gun to school. I have no idea if the rule should be bent in this case, but I believe ASPC elected officials are like Judges and should decide punishments based on not only a thorough knowledge of the situation but the history of other like situations.

2) I do not understand the point behind the rule in the first place. What is this rule trying to prevent? Post entering happens all the time at Nationals, why is that different than late entries in terms of fair competition?

3) As a member of the business of the ASPC, I have thought that we should take every entry someone wants to pay for. But, certain entries should come at a premium. Entries made before the due date should be one rate, late entries made prior to the show should be a higher rate, and post entries should be yet a higher rate. As time/labor costs money, then those who choose to add on more labor costs in a shorter time frame should just have to pay for it.

4) Isn't it wonderful that people enjoy Nationals so much that they treat it like its a vacation and want to spend that vacation with their friends? Why does ASPC require that all of those people send their entries in together? The ASPC shouldn't want $1000's of income to be determined by whether or not the last person in the chain of entries got them in on time.

5) With all of the ability to send information and money, why is the ASPC relying on the Post Office? Can't entries be faxed, emailed, couriered, or better yet be a portion of the website?

Dr Taylor
 

allaboutminis

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Done with it because Bod is going to do what they want
 
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Flying minis

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Ok, so the only reason I can see that people are saying "NO" is that it's a rule, and heaven forbid rules should be broken and I got mine in on time, so everyone else should have. Let's understand that we have a fairly antiquated system (as Dr. Taylor points out) that relies on multiple steps going right for this to work for many people. It is my first year going to Nationals - I sent my entries to a friend I will be stalling with. I trust them totally, but was still nervous until entries went in. . . We can all say they "should have" done this and that, but the truth is, in these economic times, we are far better IN THE LONG RUN to keep people involed in the breed and th organization.

So the points against letting them show should be recognized - first, a rule was broken. Ok, so have a fine for the rule breaker - whoever sent the late entries. Second, it should be "fair" to those who sent them in - ok, let's add an extra "processing fee" , NOT a post entry fee, since really the point of having them in on time is due to time / effort to process entries. Then, for those who say this will just let people think they can continue to send late entries, change the rules so that the fine and processing fee ALWAYS apply - every year - and get SIGNIFICANTLY larger the closer to the show the entries are sent. If you REALLY want to show and don't have your entries in until the week before the show, then you will have to pay through the nose to do so. All entries are to be in the show program? Well, have you ever been to an auction that has a supplement sheet? All entries could still be in the show program.

It seems to me this is a win/win. The association is paid for their extra costs, and then some, if people want to enter late. People who enter late are not excluded. It is not a "one-time" exception if it becomes the rule from here foreward (meaning for the 2012 show forward). For those saying we are opening to lawsuits because we would let these people show, well we're already there, since one show of the association DOES allow it.

I'm all for fairness, but really, let's take a look at what other issues exist, and how we can turn this from a negative to both the members and the association, to a LASTING positive. Let's not act based on today or this year, but the long term goals and needs for our group.
 
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Flying minis

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Done with it because Bod is going to do what they want
I think we also need to recognize that this is, at its core, a BUSINESS. And businesses must keep their customers happy - especially the big ones. We all want the association to grow and expand, we want markets for our horses - well, like any good business, sometimes you have to do what you can to make the customer happy. The BOD is in a bad situation right now, I wouldn't want to have to make the decision. No matter what they decide, some people will be happy, and some irate. I don't think this is a time to criticize our BOD - if they are looking at the good of the organization and its future, then this is NOT an easy decision to make, and SOMEONE is going to be ticked off with them, no matter what they decide. And folks, it's a HORSE SHOW. Granted, a big and important one, but a horse show nonetheless. Do we really enforce horse show "rules" so strictly? Sure, and no horses are stretched when measured or shown, they're always square, and no one uses action devices or ginger, etc., etc. Personally, I think the owners who would be excluded from the show would have MORE of a legal case if they are excluded - how do you justify following this rule to the nth degree, when others are not?
 

ohmt

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I don't get how a grace period in which fees are significantly higher are going to result in a later deadline. Nationals already costs a large amount of money, I hardly think many would want to double their entry fees on purpose. But, it would come in VERY handy in siuations like these.

I agree that the people who really did have theirs in on time but the post office's machine was down should not be penalized. I am not even sure how this is an issue right now. Post office sent a letter as well so what is the big deal there? Not seeing it.

The others I'm not familiar with the situations, but it sounds like one or more were trainers who thought the date was later? Those cases, I agree the rules are rules, but it needs to be changed, as Dr. Taylor has said. We need to have a grace period.
 
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Jacki

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I've read that a Director is among those affected by this situation. It is very sad just like it was very sad when other members had problems meeting the deadline in the past due to serious situations such as family death or horse death, they were not allowed an exception to the rule.

When it is over we will have an excellent idea of where our current BOD stands on enforcing the rules as currently written in our Rule Book.

That said I feel terrible for those involved, maybe some members have entered horses that these folks could show at the Nationals in some class so that they can participate to some degree.

Jacki
 
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Minimor

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Unfortunately whatever the BOd decides there are going to be a lot of hard feelings. If they don't allow these late entries, those affected will be angry. If they do allow these late entries there will be accusations of favoritism...allowing it now when a director is one of those affected, allowing it because of the names involved otherwise...when in the past others have been denied the same priviledge even though their reasons for missing the deadline were as good (even better in some cases) as those this time around.
 

Riverrose28

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In my opinion this issue should not have been made public! The membership elects the Board and gives them the right to make all decisions pertaining to the club. As someone that has served on serveral adult boards of horse clubs, I can say a decision like this is not ever going to make everyone happy. someone is going to be upset, no matter what! I'm still not even clear on the reasons for all of the late entries, one says the post office posting machine was down, well, couldn't they drive to another location, or did they just wait till the office was about to close on the last day? If so why didn't they try to mail a day or two early? I know around here it is long drive, but there are two seperate locations, and I also know that when we had a storm in June both locations were closed. If it was me I would have driven somewhere else, as these entries are important. As for the trainer getting the dates wrong, no excuse! I'd bring my horse home! Not sure of the other circumstances, and really I don't have all the facts on any, it's not up to me, it's up to the Board, and we the membership have to abide by their decision. Wheather we like it or not, they are the ones elected by us to handle this type of thing.
 

targetsmom

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As a long time competitor at local shows - but not at regionals or Nationals - I NEVER pre-enter. Yes it costs me extra money but I don't mind paying the post entry fee. I know one of the reasons for pre-entry is so that exhibitors and horses can get their names in the program, and of course it makes things easier for the show management. But I am very superstitious and the last times I pre-entered shows - in 1998 and next in 2010 for the AMHA Eastern Regional show - BOTH times a horse ended up in the hospital with colic surgery. (Yes, different horses). In the intervening time, and since, I entered at least 4-6 shows each year without ever pre-entering and without another colic surgery. I, for one, would happily pay a post entry fee for Nationals and not mind at all if my name wasn't in the program.

I also can't help but wonder in this current situation, what would have happened if no one had said a word about the late entries and slipped them in anyway. It reminds me of a time when my Dad was postmaster and found a letter that had gotten caught under something and had lain there for months (maybe years). He just picked it up and tossed it in the outgoing mail.
 

Field-of-Dreams

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So the points against letting them show should be recognized - first, a rule was broken. Ok, so have a fine for the rule breaker - whoever sent the late entries. Second, it should be "fair" to those who sent them in - ok, let's add an extra "processing fee" , NOT a post entry fee, since really the point of having them in on time is due to time / effort to process entries. Then, for those who say this will just let people think they can continue to send late entries, change the rules so that the fine and processing fee ALWAYS apply - every year - and get SIGNIFICANTLY larger the closer to the show the entries are sent. If you REALLY want to show and don't have your entries in until the week before the show, then you will have to pay through the nose to do so. All entries are to be in the show program? Well, have you ever been to an auction that has a supplement sheet? All entries could still be in the show program.

It seems to me this is a win/win. The association is paid for their extra costs, and then some, if people want to enter late. People who enter late are not excluded. It is not a "one-time" exception if it becomes the rule from here foreward (meaning for the 2012 show forward). For those saying we are opening to lawsuits because we would let these people show, well we're already there, since one show of the association DOES allow it.
Now THAT is a good idea: extra processing fee, penalty to the person who sent the entries and late fees. MOST people (myself included!) will always try to avoid the extra fees, but when something goes wrong, gets forgotten, etc, there is an "out" for them. And the registry can make some extra $$. But make the penalties high- I'm talking hundreds high. Say $100 within the first two weeks and double it every week afterwards. PER HORSE.

Of course, I'm not even GOING this year, I didn't qualify my beasties as I couldn't afford showing much this year. Ah, well!
 

Riverrose28

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I'm not going this year either, as we had no money to even show at any sanctioned shows, only 4-H! But this does set a presedence for the future. sorry can't spell to save my soul and have dial up so can't even load the spell check!
 

stormy

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"In my opinion this issue should not have been made public! "

This is a very real issue. I am very sure there have been late entries in the past that have not been permitted to show and have accepted the decision and likely been not happy, but decisions were/are made by the BOD and enforced. Making this a gigantic internet circus is extremely unprofessional in my opinion. The decision is not being made by public vote. Those of us with only bits of the whole story need to let the BOD handle the decision making process.

Just to edit a bit, not saying the BOD made it public, not sure where it started but sure makes it hard on the registry officials to make an appropriate decision when all of us are making judgments on hearsay...they have a hard job, don't envy them having to address things like this at all....we do not need to make it harder!!
 
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Minimor

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It wasn't the BOD that made this public; I assume those late entrants are the ones that put it out there, and that is their right. You cannot prevent people from talking about a situation that is such a big deal and big disappointment to them. From what I have seen and heard this was all over the Internet before Lea's letter to the BOD was posted on FB and a couple of forums.
 

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