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Report Sheds Light on Industry Negotiations



by Christy Howard Parsons

Copyright WHR 2006

The Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders’ and Exhibitors’ Association voted at their June 2005 Executive Committee meeting to give notice that they did not intend to renew their contract with the National Horse Show Commission as it had previously existed. Shortly thereafter, a series of meetings were held between representatives of the Walking Horse Owners’ Association and TWHBEA in an attempt to negotiate structural changes in the Commission.

As a results of those meetings, TWHBEA submitted the proposal printed below for WHOA’s consideration. WHOA turned down the TWHBEA proposal and has since joined the Walking Horse Trainers’ Association in forming the new NHSC.

In December, TWHBEA came forth with a proposed “Unity Plan” that was printed in the Walking Horse Report and discussed during the joined WHTA/TWHBEA annual meetings in Franklin, Tenn. That proposal is apparently still on the table and TWHBEA is reportedly moving forward in forming their own HIO.

The Report formally requested from WHOA President David Pruett a copy of the original proposal made by TWHBEA to WHOA last October in regards to the NHSC and the future of WHOA. Pruett would not release the proposal. However, the Report has obtained a copy from another source and the proposal is printed below in its entirety.

            The Report has also formally requested from Pruett, who also serves as chairman of the NHSC, a number of additional documents from the NHSC. These documents include the three-year agreement between WHOA and WHTA in regards to forming the new Commission, and the three agreements announced last week between the new NHSC and the Kentucky Horse Industry Organization, Western International Horse Industry Organization, and the Spotted Saddle Horse Breeders’ and Exhibitors’ Association. We will print these documents when they are made available to us.

            The Report requested these documents for publication since there is so much confusion and misinformation about what is actually happening at this critical time for the breed. The WHTA plans to host a question and answer session on Friday, Feb. 24, from 1-3 p.m. at the Blue Ribbon Circle Club in Shelbyville, Tenn. Hopefully coverage of this question and answer session in addition to these documents will shed some light on the current industry negotiations.

AGREEMENT

THIS AGREEMENT is made this ___ day of _________, 2005, by and between the TENNESSEE WALKING HORSE BREEDERS AND EXHBITORS ASSOCIATION, hereinafter “TWHBEA”, and the WALKING HORSE OWNERS ASSOCIATION, hereinafter “WHOA.”

WITNESSETH:

            WHEREAS TWHBEA and WHOA are horse industry organizations serving constituencies with varied interests in the Tennessee Walking Horse; and

            WHEREAS there is duplication in the services provided by each, and almost complete overlap amongst constituencies; and

            WHEREAS TWHBEA and WHOA are two of the three “parent organization” members of the National Horse Show Commission, Inc., hereinafter “Commission”; and

            WHEREAS TWHBEA and WHOA are two of the three organizations paying for the legal services of Neils Holch, Esquire; and

            WHEREAS WHOA, amongst a host of other activities, issues, charges for, and makes eligibility determinations in regard to Amateur Cards pursuant to the current Commission agreement; conducts a national high point championship; and conducts the International Grand Championship Horse Show; and

            WHEREAS TWHBEA is currently developing new horse shows, to include a world championship show, and is currently developing a national high point championship; and

            WHEREAS TWHBEA and WHOA desire to become more efficient and more fiscally responsible by eliminating the duplication of services;

            NOW THEREFORE in consideration of the mutual covenants contained herein, the receipt and sufficiency of which are hereby acknowledged, the parties hereto agree as follows:

ARTICLE 1

Covenants of the Parties

1.         WHOA shall assign to TWHBEA all of its rights to issue, charge for, and make eligibility determinations in regard to Amateur Cards under the terms and conditions contained in the current Commission agreement, or any extension, renewal, or renegotiation thereof.

2.         WHOA shall assign to TWHBEA the right to appoint the WHOA members and alternates to the Commission Board of Directors, and WHOA members and alternates to all Commission committees and sub-committees under the terms and conditions contained in the current Commission agreement, or any extension, renewal, or renegotiation thereof.

3.         WHOA shall assign to TWHBEA all other rights, obligations, and duties that it may have under the terms and conditions contained in the current Commission agreement, or any extension, renewal, or renegotiation thereof.

4.         TWHBEA shall pay on behalf of WHOA all sums due to Neils Holch, Esquire, or his successor, for services provided to the Commission under the terms and conditions contained in the current Commission agreement, or any extension, renewal, or renegotiation thereof, as such sums become due and payable.

5.         TWHBEA shall pay all sums owed to the Commission by WHOA under the terms and conditions contained in the current Commission agreement, or any extension, renewal, or renegotiation thereof, as such sums become due and payable.

6.         WHOA shall not agree to the extension, renewal or renegotiation of the current Commission agreement, or any future extension, renewal or renegotiation of a then existing Commission agreement during the next six years or during any year in which TWHBEA tenders the sum of Twenty Thousand Dollars ($20,000.00) as a contribution to the International Grand Championship Horse Show consistent with paragraph 9, without the written consent of TWHBEA.

7.         TWHBEA shall engage a full time employee as Director of Horse Show Development, or some similar title, and for such other purposes as TWHBEA deems appropriate, at a salary, plus benefits, commensurate with similarly situated TWHBEA employees.

8.         TWHBEA shall make its Director of Horse Show Development, or the successor thereof, available to WHOA for one hundred and sixty (160) hours each year to aid in the promotion and production of the International Grand Championship Horse Show, as long as TWHBEA is a contributor to those shows as set forth in paragraph 9.

9.         TWHBEA, for a period of at least six years, shall annually contribute the sum of Twenty Thousand Dollars ($20,000.00) to the International Grand Championship Horse Show.

10.       TWHBEA and WHOA shall  jointly develop a national high points championship to be owned and conducted by TWHBEA, the “Tennessee Walking Horse National High Point Championship” or some similar name, and, for a period of at least six years, shall jointly conduct a banquet celebrating the winners.

11.       TWHBEA’s Executive Committee shall create two new Executive Committee positions only for the period commencing January 1, 2006 and ending December 2, 2006. TWHBEA’s Executive Committee shall fill those positions with members of its Board of Directors who are also members of WHOA’s Board of Directors or who are in WHOA leadership positions. Anyone wishing to serve on TWHBEA’s Executive Committee commencing on December 2, 2006 and thereafter, shall be required to seek such a position through the normal election process.

ARTICLE II

 

Non-Waiver

 

            The failure of either party to exercise any of its rights under this Agreement for any breach thereof shall not be deemed to be a waiver of such rights or a waiver of any subsequent breach. This paragraph shall survive the termination of this Agreement or any extension or renewal thereof.

            The failure of either party to exercise any of its rights under this Agreement for any breach thereof shall not be deemed to be a waiver of such rights or a waiver of any subsequent breach.

            This paragraph shall survive the termination of this Agreement or any extension or renewal thereof.

ARTICLE III

Notice

            Any notice given in connection with this Agreement shall be given in writing and shall be delivered either by handy to the party or by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the party at the party’s address stated herein.

To TWHBEA at:

To WHOA at:

            Any party may change its address stated herein by giving notice of the change in accordance with this paragraph.

ARTICLE IV

Assignability

            This Agreement may not be assigned, in whole or in part, by WHOA. However, upon written notice to WHOA, TWHBEA may assign this Agreement in whole or in part.

ARTICLE V

Entire Agreement

            This agreement constitutes the entire agreement among the parties and the parties hereto acknowledge that neither has relied upon any oral representations or agreements that shall in any way affect the terms of this written Agreement, and that this Agreement may not be modified or changed except by written instrument executed by the parties.

ARTICLE VI

Severability

            If any part of this Agreement is found by a court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, then the rest of the contract will be read as if the part found invalid did not exist.

ARTICLE VII

Gender and Number

            Unless the context otherwise requires, the use of one gender shall include all genders and the use of the singular shall include the plural and vice versa.

ARTICLE VIII

Captions

            The captions preceding the various paragraphs are for the convenience of reference only, and none of them shall be used to aid in the construction of any provision contained in this Agreement.

ARTICLE IX

Governing Law

           

            This Agreement shall be subject to and governed by the laws of the State of Tennessee.

            IN WITNESS WHEREOF the respective Associations have caused their officers, duly authorized by resolutions of their Boards of Directors which resolutions have not been revoked, to execute this agreement as of the date first written.

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