Monday, January 21, 2008

Proposed Trainer and Clinician Charge Policy

As stated previously, the Board has asked Bill and I to come back with a proposed policy for how to charge trainers (credentialed and non) and clinicians who use our arenas. Based on a meeting last night with some resident equestrians, here is the first draft of that policy.

Summary: Rock, paper, scissors style of prioritization will be applied except when the trainer/clinician purchases a "Do Not Disturb" permit.

Let me explain. First, a schedule will be created for all of the arenas and every standing lesson or scheduled clinic, event etc must be listed based on a submitted schedule request at least two weeks in advance. We note that the arenas are not like tennis courts and so multiple activities can happen. But there are times when there is a disagreement on how many of which type of events can happen simultaneously and that is when the following policy will kick in.

A) ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS HIERARCHY - In the event of a conflict of multiple activities occurring in an arena, the order of precedence over what and whom trumps who is set as follows:

1) Credentialed trainer with standing scheduled lesson in their primary arena
2) Resident with scheduled occasional lesson, clinic or other activity by non-credentialed trainer
3) Resident doing unscheduled "free riding" (practicing a discipline as opposed to turnout or other warm up activity) (Note: individual time in the arena may not be scheduled but the schedule will provide for blocks of time when residents have priority use)
4) Credentialed trainer with unscheduled lesson (due to causes including rain, or any other reason their primary arena is not available)
5) Credentialed trainer with a scheduled lesson that is held in an arena OTHER than their primary arena (Meaning Mickey, Jan or Mary seeking to use the Middle Arena to give a lesson that could/should be scheduled and conducted in the Upper or Lower arenas).
6) Resident with unscheduled non credentialed trainer lesson or other activity
7) Credentialed trainer doing turnout or other warm up activity necessary for their business
8) Resident doing turnout or other warm up activity

If there is a disagreement by ANYONE at the center over who gives way to whom in the event that one or both parties feel they can't do their activity due to the activity of another, the above order of precedent (rock, paper, scissors) applies.


Analysis of the budget indicates that it costs the Association approximately $100 per arena, per day to maintain the arena, maintain the footings and contribute to the reserves each year. Because trainer lessons of all kinds and clinics are wear and tear on the arena, it is proposed that a fee of $25 per hour be administered to those who schedule activities in the arena and be the basis for determining the fees of trainers in future as contracts come up for renewal or renegotiation. To provide incentive for trainers and clinicians to work cooperatively with residents, the fee can be waived if they trainer/clinician agrees to abide by the order of precedence above. That means theoretically they can be bumped by someone else if their activity ranks lower than the challenger. If you want to get bumped to the top of the rock, paper, scissor chain you may purchase a "Do Not Disturb" permit that entitles you to trump any other claim on the arena during your activity. You can also use this permit if you wish to reserve the arena exclusively for your activity. This permit may NOT be purchased by residents for their own personal time or use of the arena without a trainer or clinician. The permit will cost $25 per hour and must be paid in advance. It can't be purchased at the time of a challenge.


1) Credentialed trainers will schedule their lessons for each arena with the center manager and the schedule posted for everyone to see and a determination will be made after six months to determine if the fee the trainer is paying Nellie Gail is sufficient for the volume of activity they use in each arena. The fees will be adjusted up or down accordingly and this will help provide incentive for the credentialed trainers to be more sensitive to the needs of and access to the arenas by residents. Trainers who fail to schedule their lessons on a recurring basis will be sanctioned and risk losing their credentialing.

2) Do Not Disturb permits may be purchased by credentialed trainers for other arenas when their primary arena is out of order such as due to rain. Like any other activity, they may opt not to purchase this permit, but a credentialed trainer may NOT bump another scheduled activity in order to hold their lesson UNLESS they purchase a "Do Not Disturb permit" which will move them to the top of the Rock, Paper, Scissor ranking listed above.

This is the first draft proposal and very much open to input. We need a policy no matter how rare the occassion of something happens. The point of law is not for the commonplace, but the exceptions when good people can't be good neighbors. (We have laws for murder despite the relative rareness of the activity for example). The schedule is paramount. Then the administration and implementation of that schedule. But After that we will need a policy like this to address the ambiguity that arises when multiple things are happening and people disagree over how much of what can happen with who in the arena at the same time. Please offer your comments here. Thx.


Anonymous said...

This sounds like a fair policy. Thank you for taking the time to craft the policy.

The question I have is:What if another Jumper trainer wants to come in and give a clinic? Are they able to?

James said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
James said...

If another jumper trainer wants to do a clinic they have to clear two jumps (pun intended).
1) They have to meet the criteria under the new trainer policy passed last year.
2) They have to meet the criteria in Mickey's contract, which grossly stated is that if Mickey don't want 'em here, they're not coming in.
(I forgot to spell check the last version so I deleted it)

Anonymous said...

One fact to consider here is that our facility was apparently expanded by eight stalls beyond its design (88 to 96) and is now overcrowded. Perhaps the policy should address reducing the number of boarded horses which would reduce the pressure on the arenas?

Anonymous said...

"Analysis of the budget indicates that it costs the Association approximately $100 per arena, per day to maintain the arena, maintain the footings and contribute to the reserves each year. "

Doesn't this mean that our jumping trainer who is only paying $1800 (?) a month should be paying a minimum of at least $3000 for the arena, and not to mention the cost of offices and exclusive use of items in the jumper trainers contract?
What is wrong with the way the association does business? Is this the reason we are not making money from our center?

Anonymous said...

I agree with the "budget analysis" comment but would suggest that $3000/month is too low since it is based on one arena. Don't forget that his students dominate the use of the middle arena too. And what about a reserve contribution?

Let's not forget that the swim team coach is paying approximately $5000/month ($61,000/12 months) to J.Serra for pool time on a much smaller budget.

Anonymous said...

the budget we got says the horse center is paying making money, but it is getting the cell site money not the association. and the storage for a contractors stuff. are we getting cash or is it accounting.

Anonymous said...

These emails that are floating around again are saying the information we got in the mail (the financial audit) is not really the whole picture. Is that true, and how exactly can I find out what is true?

Concerned Resident said...

Yes, the audit is only a partial picture, a summary or analysis by one company if you will of how things are done here. There are many details. The audit looks at the budget and says do they have line items of income that equal the line items for costs? Yes. But they don't comment on whether cell phone tower revenue really is "equestrian income" for example.

Rebecca said...

There is a group trying to get residents to sign a letter in support of the changes they want made to this policy. I have one question for everyone who signed the letter;

Why weren't you at the meeting, if you care so much?

It was an open meeting, and these things need to be discussed, not just facts thrown back and forth. I suggest another meeting where ALL interested parties meet and come to a compromise based on the goals of the group - rather than individuals looking for support of their opions.