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Thread: BMW Z8 Club - Annual General Meeting

  1. #1
    Team Z8 dwz8's Avatar
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    BMW Z8 Club - Annual General Meeting

    Having returned from yesterday?s Annual General Meeting I want to take the opportunity to inform you about some important points that were discussed. This should not be considered a replacement for minutes, but as a courtesy to those who weren?t able to attend in person.

    The meeting went well. 37 members were in the room with some 69 voices in total. I want to mostly skip the procedural stuff and reviews of what had happened in 2012 and part of 2013. In a nutshell: member count has steadily increased over all years, even in 2012 when some members left because of the trouble situation. 684 members right now.

    Finances look very good, expenses have greatly been reduced in the meantime. All numbers were verified by our auditors. The board was discharged.
    The report about tourist activities reminded the members of 19 events (drives, gatherings) in 2012 and 2013, most notably the Dolomite Rallye in June 2013.
    For 2014, there is a preliminary plan to organize a meeting in France (Mulhouse) in cooperation with the French Z8 club, which is an associate member of the BMW Z8 Club e.V. A big highlight will be activities around the Cit? de l?Automobile in Mulhouse, the former Schlumpf museum, which is the largest Bugatti collection around the world (see last Club magazine). We still need to confirm this, but things look good.
    There were a couple of things I talked about in the technical section, from taillights to workshop problems and the consequences rising from the fact that BMW Classic is now responsible for our Z8. We will have to decide how to deal with the expectable spare part situation in the future soon.
    The public relation section referred to the new website (www.bmwz8club.com) and its new functionality in the member section.
    Finally, there was an outlook to 2014, when we want to continue the revision of all internal processes as well as advance the Club to the next level. One idea is to truly internationalize the Club with an Europe/Asian and an American section. Proposals will be developed soon.

    As a consequence of the experiences being made the Board has decided to abandon the structure of regional representatives in Europe (except for the UK). There will be a new approach in line with insurance, liability, and tax regulations for international meetings (like the Dolomite tour), multi-day national meetings (like the regional drives in several parts of Europe), and one-day events. Details to be announced soon.

    Before the AGM started, the Board offered insight into all related documents concerning the allegations brought up against J?rgen Wunderlich and former Board Members. The Board has conducted an internal revision of all decisions and actions, and gave all members the opportunity to inform them in detail about the findings. One member attended this presentation.
    During the AGM, the results of this internal investigation were presented to the audience. All payments to J?rgen and Sylvia have been examined, and all alleged misconduct in office has been, too. The results were confirmed by our auditors.

    The Board was very pleased to make the following statements:

    • All examined proceedings were legitimate.
    • The legitimacy is unambiguous and has been audited.
    • The paid amounts represent an adequate compensation for comprehensive club services rendered, and for storage space provided.
    • Accepting personal advantages was not discernible in any area.
    • We accept that the level of payments directed to a Board Member for services rendered may always result in different opinions.
      This must not lead to defamatory allegations.

    Furthermore, the Board informed the audience about the status of the investigations. After several depositions and ongoing investigation the following facts can be confirmed:

    • The criminal complaint was filed on 0ct 5, 2012 (long after the elections of the new Board)
    • On Nov 15, 2012, the revenue office confirmed that all due taxes had been paid. No further investigation took place after that point.
    • On April 15, 2013, investigators inspected the storage and office spaces. The lease paid for this was classified as adequate.
    • From May, 2013 on, only the monthly amount that had been paid for expenditures was scrutinized for applicability of social security contributions.
    • On Sep 16, 2013, the German Federal Pension Funds agreed that the bigger portion of this money did not lead to social security obligations.
    • For a minor amount the Club has to pay social security and tax.
    • For all years considered, and for all payments made to J?rgen, the Club has now to pay only about
      ? 1.500
      Whoever has passed an IRS audit can tell that there will always something left at the end. We could still appeal this payment, however, we would certainly spend more money that it would be worth.
    • After this decision we expect a positive outcome for the Club as far as the criminal complaint is concerned.

    As a consequence of the results of internal and external investigations, the Board was more than happy to make the following statements:

    • The Board considers J?rgen Wunderlich as an honorable person, free of negligent or unlawful behavior.
    • As far as concerned, this is also true for Sylvia Wunderlich, and for the Board Members who stepped down from office in spring 2012 Heinz-Peter Nowitzki, Eduard Motter, and Jutta Haenisch.

    This is a summary of what has happened yesterday. More detail will be in the minutes, of course. But we thought that you might want to hear firsthand about a couple of things.
    Best regards, Dieter

    ....

  2. #2
    This is wonderful news!

    I really hope we'll see J?rgen back in a Z8, and of course personally I would also love to see those who created all this horrible acrimony expelled from the club.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  3. #3
    Team Z8 dwz8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by macfly View Post
    This is wonderful news!
    It certainly is, and it has been a very long way for all of us to get to this point.
    Best regards, Dieter

    ....

  4. #4
    The Other Red ZAchterbahn's Avatar
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    As long distance participant in a good number of lengthy Sunday (noon for my time zone) BMW Z8 Club e.V. board conference calls over the past 15 months I would like to extend a special thank you to our president Sonja and board members Dieter, Achim and William for pulling our club through the worst of times.

    I have witnessed first hand the stress and agony these brave souls have taken upon themselves to keep the club together and to transition it from the golden founder's days to the institution it had to evolve into following Juergen's untimely and most regrettable withdrawal.

    It is time for the bullies to say good bye to the sand box and to seek Z8 friends elsewhere, like www.Z8-freunde.de or such. The damage they have done is irreparable in terms of volunteer time, professional hours and club resources spent in the past 15 months to remedy the situation. Imagine where our club could be today had Sonja, Dieter, Achim and William spent these countless hours on positive club business instead of sanitizing a vandalized sand box!

    Time to move forward and be who we are, a group of BMW Z8 aficionados, ladies and gentlemen alike, who enjoy each others' company guided with mutual respect and motivated by fair play without ulterior motives.

    It has been a pleasure serving on the board with such dedicated, selfless and relentless peers.

    Long live our BMW Z8 Club e.V. International!

    Happy motoring to all its good members who stood by in trying times and welcome to those who are ready to join!

    (I am writing these lines as a club member in good standing and not as a club official.)
    ZAchterbahn
    2001 Z8

  5. #5
    Well said!!

    I look very forward to better days ahead, and bravo to all involved for saving a most regrettable and ugly situation.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  6. #6
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    Thank you Dieter and you too Christian. Good news all around. And thank you to all who gave so much for our club over the past years.

  7. #7
    Sport Button On Routineer's Avatar
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    It's A New Day

    I impulsively "weighed in" 18 months ago and responded on behalf of the Wunderlichs to refute the accusations of Bachmann, Nowack and Nees in that nasty email that was sent to all Z8 club members.

    I had lots of help with understanding the background of the allegations, getting to the bottom of the story, "sanity checking" my response, and translation services.

    That help that I received came from some of the most honorable people I know - people that have contributed significant time and effort, stepping into the role of new board members so save the Club from possible extinction.

    I would never have imagined that the unfounded accusations of Bachmann/Nowack/Nees would be escalated to the point of a criminal complaint, leading to a criminal investigation, and threatening the "day job" livelihood of Jurgen Wunderlich. But I am quite happy that that the accusations have been proven to be without merit.

    Of course I'm delighted that my "rush to judgement" in defense of the Wunderlichs and the other members of the previous board has been vindicated by due process.

    But I must acknowledge that the due process followed and respected by these most honorable people in their role as the new board members deserves special recognition. It was the proper course to follow, and reflected the best in both organizational governance and human character.

    Here's to the "new" board - who have served us well through this most difficult episode. But let's not forget the "old board" who resigned "en mass" and under a dark cloud. They worked hard to get the club to a point of critical mass, and our "new board" worked extra hard these last 18 months to insure that all was not lost due to reckless accusations. The dark cloud is dissipating, and it's a new day.
    Routineer

  8. #8
    Team Z8 dwz8's Avatar
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    Thanks to all for your replies and ongoing support.

    Christian likes to downplay his contribution to the Board, and I object to that. Not only does he represent a strong link of our US members to the Board, his point of view has been ever helpful when developing ideas for the Club's future.

    And, after all, he invested a lot of private (Sunday) time and patience in the Board. We are all very pleased to have him on Board, and he will play a significant role in the discussions regarding the international Club structure.
    Best regards, Dieter

    ....

  9. #9
    Z8 Novice stietz's Avatar
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    Dear Club members,

    what should be an enthusiastic "Hobby" Job was sometimes hard work. And believe me I had times where I wanted to give up. Now we are looking forward and I hope that Bachmann and Nees bear the consequences and leave our Club.

    Best Regards Sonja

  10. #10
    As a lawyer, and as an American, I know we Americans have a deserved reputation as too litigious and that our legal system results in a lot of abuse. I am unfamiliar with the German legal system. So, it's rather amazing to me that what appears to be a small scale dispute could turn into such a big mess outside of the U.S.'s crazy overly litigious system.
    I feel so sorry for the pain and expense that the legitimate board members and their families had to go through to obtain this vindication. It's gratifying to see that after all the B.S, the system worked. It's just a shame it had to go on so long and involve so many different investigations. Criminal law. Tax law. Corporate law. Unreal. Anyway, congratulations to the Board for steering this little club through this idiocy. I'm hoping those responsible for creating this mess will go away forever. And that's as nice as I can put it. I will continue to support this group with my dues, which I hope will be put to better use in the future.
    Greg
    Greg AH61930 - 2003 - Silver/Black

  11. #11
    Sport Button On Routineer's Avatar
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    The US legal system can be onerous, but I can not imagine what it must have been like when uniformed German investigators (wearing guns) came to the Wunderlich's house during the investigation. That makes our IRS targeting Tea-Party requests for tax-free status seem pretty tame.
    Routineer