After considerable debate and deliberation the CAMBA board of directors has voted to withdraw from the IMBA Chapter Program. CAMBA became an IMBA chapter in 2012 very early in the development of the chapter program. Over time it has become apparent that CAMBA, as a mature and well developed trail advocacy organization, does not experience the same level of needs as other smaller and younger clubs and associations around the country and was not realizing a commensurate return on our revenue sharing arrangement with IMBA.
“CAMBA still believes in and supports the IMBA mission,” notes CAMBA executive director Ron Bergin. “We fully intend to continue our support for IMBA into the future.”
CAMBA is obligated by our chapter charter agreement to continue to function as a chapter through a 60-day notice period that will expire in early May. Until that time current members may receive renewal notices from IMBA and membership revenue will continue to be shared with IMBA. CAMBA will roll out its own membership program in early May. CAMBA members with questions about their membership should contact CAMBA directly at email@example.com or (715)798-3599.
IMBA has experienced a number of setbacks in recent months, precipitated by the loss of Subaru as a major sponsor as well as other sponsors. This has required numerous cutbacks in the organization, as well as to services offered through the chapter program. The Associate Regional Directors have been eliminated leaving only a few Regional Directors nationwide to assist local chapters. The widely appreciated IMBA Trail Care Crews are also gone.
When CAMBA became a chapter in 2012, a key feature of the program was the cost savings possible by obtaining group liability insurance coverage for CAMBA through IMBA. The new program offers no help with liability insurance to chapters.
Central to the decision to withdraw from the chapter program has been the revenue share structure. Upon becoming a chapter, CAMBA agreed to share membership revenue with IMBA on a 60%-IMBA/40%-CAMBA basis. As CAMBA developed its 2017 budget it became quite apparent that this percentage of membership revenue could play an important role in meeting our local needs. “We have several significant initiatives underway for the 2017 season,” relates Bergin, “and these additional funds will help us balance our budget.”
Extensive efforts have been made and are continuing to be considered by IMBA to rework the function and offerings of the chapter program. To date none of the new offerings of the second and third iterations of the chapter program provide sufficient incentive for CAMBA to continue in the program. As previously noted, CAMBA thoroughly believes in and supports IMBA’s mission to create, enhance and protect great places to ride mountain bikes. CAMBA will continue to play a role as a strong regional trail advocacy organization and assist IMBA in any way possible.
We look forward to your continued support as CAMBA returns to its roots as an independent trail advocacy organization working for you, the rider, to advocate for and to provide, maintain and keep improving our great system of mountain bike trails.