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The E-Sylum:  Volume 9, Number 53, December 31, 2006, Article 14

JOEL OROSZ ASKS FOR THE WHOLE TRUTH ABOUT ANA FINANCES

The recent dismissal of David Sklow, the American Numismatic Association
librarian, kicked off a lot of discussion among ANA members and E-Sylum
readers - anything that affects the library and numismatic research in
general tends to perk up our readers' ears.

We've only scratched the surface here in The E-Sylum, but COIN World readers
have been treated to a knock-down, drag-out battle between opposing camps.
Sklow fired a big salvo in a COIN World Guest Commentary that was then
rebutted by the ANA Executive Director and some employees.

In the January 1, 2007 issue NBS Board member Joel Orosz counters with
a scathing point-by-point response in a Guest Commentary headlined "It's
time for the whole truth to be told."  Orosz writes that the most serious
accusations have been unanswered with "any data, evidence or facts to
prove that Mr. Sklow's charges are misleading or incorrect."  These
accusations include:

* "Retired ANA employees are not receiving their rightful retirement
benefits; some have been waiting for more than a year."

* "More money is budgeted for library employee salaries than is
actually being paid to library employees, and there is no accounting
for the missing funds."

* A proposed policy change that would allow the Executive Director to
withdraw funds from the ANA's permanent endowment without the
permission of a majority of the board of governors.

Orosz cites an August 16, 2006 story published in The Colorado Springs
Gazette.  Using public IRS filings the reporter documented financial
losses of over $1 million, and projected total losses nearing
$2 million.  Orosz calls on the organization to conduct a full and
publicly accessible audit of the ANA's finances in order to reassure
the organization's membership.

With so much time, energy and money being expended on these issues,
perhaps it is time for an outside review.  It would mean a further
drain of resources on both sides, but when the results come out
perhaps the ruckus can somehow be resolved.  Orosz suggests the U.S.
Internal Revenue Service (which regulates nonprofits at the Federal
level) or the Colorado Attorney General's office (the state regulator).

Colorado Springs Gazette: Colorado Springs Gazette
Colorado Attorney General Email: Colorado Attorney General Email
Colorado Attorney General Web: Colorado Attorney General Web
IRS Web: IRS Web

Perhaps none of this would rise to a level of visibility that would
prompt regulators to investigate - only time will tell.  It would be
sad if it would come to that.  But resolving the issue once and for
all would be a fine New Year's resolution for all parties, and might
clear the air for the new Board of Governors to be elected in 2007.

[Since the subject of proposed ANA policy changes came up, I'd like
to throw in an opinion on one which relates to my second home, the
Internet.  As much as I enjoy the immediacy of electronic communication,
I must recommend strongly AGAINST the ANA or any organization
relinquishing paper election ballots in any way, shape or form.
Membership votes are the bedrock of any organization.  Opinion polls?
Fine for e-voting.  Elections?  Heck, no.  Local governments nationwide
and their army of consultants have yet to be convinced that any of the
proposed purely electronic solutions is completely tamper-proof; a
paper trail is a MUST.

ANA Board candidate Joe Boling shared this comment: "Many members do
not have access (let alone CONVENIENT access) to the Internet. They
must not be penalized for wanting to vote the old-fashioned way. There
must also be iron-clad anti-fraud software on this process - which may
mean that we do not get to implement it until 2011 or 2013. This CANNOT
be rushed."

Amen - Great idea.  Plan for it.  Investigate it.  But do NOT implement
it, at least not yet.  It's just plain dangerous.  Listen to Joe -
don't rush it.  -Editor]

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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