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Held at the San Gorg Corinthia Hotel, St Julians, on Tuesday, 07 February 2012.

Mr Ian Scicluna was entrusted with the taking of the minutes at this AGM.  This proposal was accepted by all present.

The meeting was opened at 20:15, due to the absence of a Quorum at 20:00, by the Hon. President, Mr Kevin Casha who started by an outline of proceedings, general overview and reading out of today’s agenda, as follows:

Secretary General’s report

  1. Treasurer’s Report
  2. Nomination of two tellers to run the election
  3. Amendments to statute
  4. Introduction of members sitting for election
  5. Election
  6. Other matters
  7. Election results

The members were informed that the Hon. Treasurer was excused from today’s meeting, due to illness.

The Secretary General proceeded to read out his report for the year 2011, a copy of which was e-mailed to all members some weeks prior to the AGM. The report mentioned the several courses organized by the MIPP throughout the past year and dwelt on their high demand and success.  Competitions, exhibitions and seminars organized by the Institute were also highlighted.

Probably the most important announcement in the SG’s report was the launching of the Higher National Diploma course in Photography at MCAST, conceived through the untiring efforts of our President, with the help of Mr Stephen Vella – Director of the Institute of Art and Design.

Another interesting bit of news was that Polish photographer Witold Flak and Italian artist Chiara Fersini will be our guests for World Photography Day 2012.

The approval for the Secretary General’s Report was proposed by Mr Sergio Muscat, seconded by Mr Colin Pilling.  It was passed unanimously by all present.

In the absence of our Hon. Treasurer, the Secretary General then proceeded to read the Treasurer’s Reportfor the year ending 31 December 2011.

The financial situation of the Institute continues to improve:  income for the year was €20,506.64, whileexpenditure stood at €13,812.72, resulting in a net surplus of €6,747.92.  A total of 602 journal entries were posted this year.

The main source of income, as is to be expected, comes from the membership subscriptions.

Net assets at end of year stood at €58,647.18.

Approval of the report was proposed by Ms Therese Debono and seconded by Mr Dominic Aquilina.

There was one abstention.  Report was therefore passed as read.

A short follow up by Mr Kevin Casha expressed satisfaction regarding this healthy state of affairs.

It was pointed out that the increase in expenditure over last year was mainly due to the purchase of a new, much-needed digital projector and remuneration fees to our guest lecturers.  There was also the introduction of free yearly seminars, the costs of which are being totally absorbed by the MIPP.

Mr Casha then went on to explain that the election of committee members was superfluous, as the required number of candidates,  that is seven, has been exactly matched.  He subsequently expressed his thanks and appreciation on behalf of all the members to the outgoing committee for their much-appreciated work carried out during their tenure.  Particular thanks went to Sergio Muscat who, although no longer forming part of the committee, will still make himself available “part time” whenever his help was needed.

The new committee for 2012 will therefore be made up of:

Kevin Casha, Charles Calleja, Anthony Cilia, Chris Sammut, Martin Agius, Therese Debono, Trevor Sollars.

Amendments to the Statute

The only proposal for amendment to the statute was put forward by the committee concerns the membership subscriptions.

The proposal consists of raising the membership across the board by €5.00 starting from payments due for the year 2013.

Mr Sergio Muscat agreed in principle, but suggested that the membership is not raised for members who are 61 years or over, that is, left at the present €25.00 annually.  Mr Anthony Cilia’s suggestion was that the joint membership fee for married couples be raised by €10.00 rather than just €5.00, seeing that two persons were involved.

Mr Muscat’s suggestion was accepted, while the joint membership fee proposal was rejected.  During the discussion it was also suggested that the word “married” be dropped from the paragraph concerning subscriptions, leaving only the word “couple” in it’s broadest sense.

The motion (as amended) was carried unanimously.

Other Matters

Questionnaire

Mr Anthony Cilia, who was the man behind the project, proceeded to give an account of the answers to the questionnaire recently put to members.  All data was available on a projected presentation.

Various ideas and views were put forward during Mr Cilia’s delivery.

Top discussions were:

-Whether to record on video the lectures/presentations for Gozitan members who could not possibly attend.

-Whether we would hold events during weekends instead of weekdays.

-The usefulness of our Facebook pages vs. our website.

-Restricting the use of the MIPP Facebook wall to the number or nature of images and to members  who blatantly abuse this facility.

-Content of monthly Newsletter.

-Introduction of regular critique sessions.

-Photowalks: content, frequency.

-Site-map to be prepared for website. (by Anthony Cilia)

The winners of the competition associated with this questionnaire where drawn:

Clive Camilleri – Vincent Bellizzi – Luke Vella-Clarke.

Mr Cilia was to pass on the book prizes.

Qualifications

Alan Falzon asked whether any changes will be made to the rules regarding qualifications.  A short discussion was held, but it is beyond the scope of these minutes.  The new rules will be published shortly.

Meeting times

Mr Charles Calleja put forward the idea of changing the normal time of meetings from 20:00 to 19:00 or 19:30.  This idea was welcomed by all and starting from next meeting, the time will be 19:30.

Gozo section

KC said that the so-named Gozo section of the MIPP, after having shown promise in the early days of being set up, had fizzled out.  The persons who seemed to be very keen in the beginning don’t seem to be anymore; and a few have started organizing events of their own accord independently of MIPP. Still, under Anthony Grech and Paul Scicluna, there is a will to restart this and the MIPP was going to make an attempt to help out to nurture this.

This year’s Gozo seminar – the third of the series – was not as successful as the previous two, and the Institute needed to put things right in this regard.  The committee will give this matter its due importance and make an effort to revive the Gozo section.

The Gozo group have put forward their own suggestions among which: Recording of lectures/tutorials when they cannot attend; special photowalks held in Gozo followed by image critique by an expert.

They would prefer Saturdays to Sundays for such an outing.

Weekdays  are very difficult if not impossible for them to attend our evening sessions.  It was acknowledged that something needed to be done to involve them more as they are paying their fee after all.

Nathalie Attard (who frequents Gozo regularly) said there are only about six photographers who are really keen at present.

Could they be entrusted with finding speakers for themselves in Gozo and organizing the event entirely?  Kevin was in favour, but of course the committee will need to be notified for final approval.

They do advertise events on FB for the benefit of Malta members.

It was notified that a letter was written to the committee by the Gozo group outlining their requests and will be discussed in depth during a future meeting.

Colin Pilling

A Certificate rewarding long service was presented by KC on behalf of the BIPP to Colin Pilling in recognition of 25 years of service and for constantly upholding the aims of the Institute.

The meeting was adjourned at 21:45.

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