Astronomical Society of Greater Hartford
Online Business Meeting Minutes
Date: May 17, 2023
The Annual meeting, May 17, 2023 of the Astronomical Society of Greater Hartford was called to order over Zoom at 7:35 PM. There were 18 participants in attendance. Due to conflicts with scheduling the hoped speaker winning recipients of the Charles Hammond Memorial ASGH CT Science Fair Awards were unable to speak. There is talk that will be ongoing to have them join in the Fall at some point. President Christopher Markievicz spoke in their stead providing an informative presentation on The Science of Night Vision: Seeing in the Dark.
There was one new member in attendance, Susan from Rocky Hill. She has received instruction from Chris Markievicz after attending his class at the Rocky Hill Library. She joined ASGH shortly after the class and is happy to be part of the group.
The Secretary’s report was posted online weekend prior to the March meeting, It was approved as posted by the members in attendance.
Public Observing at the Van Vleck Observatory, Wesleyan University:
While it was previously reported that April’s session was rained out, the next scheduled public observing is a combined session with Wesleyan University’s Reunion & Commencement Weekend activities. This combined public and reunion schedule for Saturday, May 27, 2023 from 9 – 11 PM was at the request of the Van Vleck Observatory. Originally, the observatory had not planned to host an open house on Friday. After it took a couple of weeks for me to commit to staffing, the Observatory changed their plans and will open on Friday. This gives the event a combined Friday and Saturday evening program!
Some discussion on masking was brought up after the recent WHO & CDC announcements. While the major intent on those announcements are indeed financial as in vaccinations will now go through insurance and not be free to the public and Home Test Kits will no longer be available for free to those on Medicare Part B, there is acknowledgement that worldwide vaccination has reached a healthy level and despite new variants having been discovered, Covid-19 is still a dangerous illness, some changes to our Open During Pandemic guidelines will be amended. The Masking requirement posted on Wesleyan’s External facing calendar was made well over a month before the WHO/CDC announcements and will stand.
Masking is highly encouraged in a 100 year old building without ventilation but will not be enforced. Vaccination cards will no longer be checked at the door. The University already expects that all guest attendees on campus will be fully vaccinated.
Nominations for office were opened during the April Meeting. J. Sillasen, nomination chair asked for further any further nominations from the floor. Having received none, he moved that nominations be closed with the current slate of officers in office being the only candidate for each respective office. Seconded and Approved by the Membership in attendance. The President then asked Secretary Sillasen to cast a single vote for all who were running for respective offices unopposed. So moved and Cast.
Congratulations to the current/newly elected officers. Your office is now official.
Treasurer, Cyndi Barron provided an overview of all expenses for the year and expected going forward for the annual meeting. The report will be posted on the members only section of the ASGH website which is password protected.
Checking Account Balance: $3,386.59. A minimum balance of $2,500.00 is expected at M&T Bank.
Savings Account Balance: $5,346.05. A $300.00 daily minimum balance of is expected in the Savings Account.
The ASGH has two investments in the form of Treasury Bills, (T-Bills). A 26 week, $5000 T-Bill with a maturity date of 9/21/2023 at an interest rate of 4.809%. Another T-Bill is for $15,000 for 13 weeks with a Maturity Date of 6/22/2023 at 4.81%. Both are expected to be rolled over or be balanced in future investments.
Treasurer’s report accepted by the membership as reported with modifications for CT Science Fair awardees. Scott Tracy may have made more awards then we had planned and agreed to! Cyndi to contact Scott to resolve over the summer.
John Allen reported that there were no issues found or reported. Updates to Outreach section have been made and he requested that Covid 19 policy changes for observing at the Van Vleck be sent to him. (Sent and updated – J. Sillasen).
Contact Chris Markievicz to assist staffing these events at firstname.lastname@example.org.
June 16: Talcott Mtn
June 22: Town of Ellington Trails Committee (Stargazing Event) – Canceled due to weather
June 24: South Windsor P&R Family Campout – Canceled due to weather
July 17: Glastonbury Library
August 10: Town of Ellington Trails Committee (Stargazing Event)
Date(s) TBD: Cosmic Cultures II (Classroom Activity / Stargazing
Motion made by W. DiNeo to give the ASGH Treasurer the responsibility for managing Treasury Bill, (T-Bill), transactions as they come do (rather than just roll over), to assess and recommit the (current investment is $5000 plus up to an additional $2500 monies available in the savings account) with consultation with the ASGH Executive Committee. Motion seconded by J. Sillasen. No further discussion was had. The motion passed unanimously. The Treasurer will assess quarterly and provide monthly statuses of T-Bill investments along with the Savings and Checking account balances.
A Solar Observing Committee will be formed to assess performing Solar Outreach again subsequent to the 2001 Solar Outreach ban by the ASGH. Initial Members of the committee are Cyndi Barron, Marty Ollenschleger, Dave Allen, William DiNeo and John Sillasen. Sillasen to provide Zoom meetings as needed.