TASCOE Directors and Committee Chairs,
There has been a lot of discussion about the upcoming TASCOE Convention in Murfreesboro September 18-20 and the State Farm Programs Training in Gatlinburg the following week. As you know, the TASCOE convention date was set at the Mid-year meeting much earlier in the year, and the contract with the Doubletree Hotel in Murfreesboro was signed in March. TASCOE is obligated to honor the contract or a penalty will be incurred. This penalty would be a costly expense for TASCOE.
We understand that this is not an ideal situation for everyone however it is the situation that we have been dealt this year. I have heard concerns from members about the “STO required carpooling” language in the Farm Bill Training TN Notice AO-748. I have spoken with Ty and she has asked me to inform TASCOE members to not let carpooling prohibit you from attending the convention in Murfreesboro. If you have plans of going to TASCOE convention and leaving from there to attend the Farm Bill training, that is perfectly fine. Carpooling is still encouraged however do not let that be the reason that you did not attend TASCOE Convention. Ty will be attending TASCOE convention and the State Committee will be holding their September meeting during the convention on Friday. Additionally, Mark Stivers with Benefits Planning is attending and so is Dillard Financial. Mark Stivers will be donating $500 to TASCOE for allowing him to be a presenter. John Norris, NASCOE SEA Executive will be attending as well.
While we were attending NASCOE convention, something happened and I can’t help but compare it to our convention situation. Mike Lee, NASCOE Convention Chairman, in preparation for NASCOE convention, guaranteed the hotel 300 meals for lunch on Thursday and Friday of the convention. At 11:00 A.M. on Thursday, only 30 people had paid for lunch or stated they would have lunch at the hotel. If Mike did not have the minimum 300 people sign up for lunch, the penalty was going to be somewhere between $3,000 and $6,000. Mike informed the attendees of this situation and over 374 people ate lunch there at the hotel on Thursday. No one was mandated to eat lunch there, however 374 members stepped up for their organization and their fellow NASCOE member. Believe me, it wasn’t a cheap lunch either.
In my opinion, our situation is somewhat similar to that of Mike Lee’s. It was not by choice that TASCOE Convention conflict with Farm Bill Training however it can be by choice that we come together as a TASCOE membership and have a great attendance at our convention. That being said, we look forward to seeing everyone at the TASCOE Convention in Murfreesboro, TN September 18-20.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Lanny, Lisa or myself.
Clint H. Bain