New leaders of fair seated

Written by Christina O'Haver, The Union Democrat November 14, 2012 01:30 pm

The Mother Lode Fair Board of Directors elected a new president and vice president for 2013 at Tuesday night’s meeting

Vice president and 12-year board member Marge Kiriluk will take over as president for incumbent Mari Ann Bloom, who has decided to resign after serving on the board for about 20 years.

 

“It’s been delightful but, you know, life changes,” Bloom said in a telephone interview Monday. “It’s been the best thing I can do, I think, to give back to the youth and people in this community.”

Board member Wes Wittman, appointed in 2004, will replace Kiriluk as vice president.

The board’s nominating committee recommended the slate of officers and the board unanimously agreed.

Kiriluk and Wittman accepted their positions, which they will hold for one year. 

Kiriluk has served as the president once before and is looking forward to returning to the seat.

“The fair is really important to me,” she said in a post-meeting interview. “I’m really anxious to be able to help get us off the ground and encourage people to be part of the fair.”

Kiriluk admitted her new role will be challenging because the board has been faced with tough financial decisions since the state cut all of its funding.

Gov. Jerry Brown announced in 2011 that the state was eliminating funding for all California fairs, meaning the Mother Lode Fair will lose about $200,000 per year — a third of its revenue.

But Kiriluk is optimistic that the board will make ends meet, and Wittman expressed similar thoughts during the meeting. 

“I think we have a lot ahead of us but we’ll make it work,” he said.

Bloom’s resignation will leave the board short one member, and the appointment of a replacement for a four-year, unpaid term will be at the discretion of Brown.

In other business, the board:

• Approved the 2013 operating budget, which was tabled from the Oct. 23 meeting so the board could have more time to review it. Haydn-Myer said the budget did not account for a recent vehicle insurance bill the fair received for $14,093. But Haydn-Myer noted she over-budgeted by about $15,000, which would offset the expense. Recently appointed board member Mike Macon did not approve the budget because he felt it should be amended to account for the new expense. This year’s vehicle insurance bill was more than nine times the amount of last year’s bill, which was approximately $1,500, according to Haydn-Myer. An accident at a different fair caused the rate to skyrocket. 

• Unanimously approved the Tuolumne Public Power Agency rules and regulations, which will go into effect in January 2013. As part of the process of restating and amending the agency’s Joint Powers Agreement, a decision was made to record common rules and regulations in written form, which had never been done. In a letter to the Tuolumne Public Power Board of Directors, the Tuolumne Public Power Agency director, Craig Pedro, and deputy director, Kathleen Haff, said the agreement will offer existing member agencies a more comprehensive method for referencing procedures and guidelines, as well as help prospective public agencies understand the process.

The next meeting will be held at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11 in the boardroom of the administration office at the Mother Lode Fairgrounds in Sonora.