Warwick RSL special meeting next week

By Jeremy Sollars

A special general meeting of Warwick RSL Memorial Club members scheduled to be held next Tuesday 15 January will call for the resignation of the club’s current management committee.

The ‘Save the Warwick RSL’ meeting follows months of uncertainty over the future of the club which is struggling financially but which many in the community are confident can be turned around.

As reported by the Free Times in December business management consultants engaged by the Warwick RSL management committee early in 2018 produced a scathing report on the club’s financial and day-to-day management last March.

The report by Brisbane-based Kestrel Solutions contained more than 70 recommendations for changes to the club’s operations, including its financial management and management structure along with the club’s overall premises, bars, gaming, bistro, catering, administration and book-keeping.

But the consultants made it clear that the club’s future is positive provided vital changes are made to operations and the overall staff culture.

The Free Times in December asked current management committee president Geraldine O’Neill to comment on progress made on implementing the Kestrel report’s recommendations but she declined to do so, and this week likewise declined to comment on next week’s special general meeting.

It is understood that if the current management committee refuses to resign at the meeting a ‘no confidence’ motion will be raised from the floor and if the current committee is removed a ‘caretaker’ president and committee will be appointed to serve until the next AGM, due at the end of March.

Club members have alleged previous committee meetings and record-keeping have not been in line with the RSL’s constitution.

Other issues include the quality of food being served in the bistro being one of the reasons patronage and cash flow are down.

The $1.5 million renovations to Kings Theatre were also identified in the Kestrel Solutions report as being a significant drain on the RSL’s financial resources, along with a tax bill to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) believed to be more than $360,000.

• The ‘Save the Warwick RSL Club’ special general meeting will be held at Kings Theatre next Tuesday 15 January at 7pm. Only current financial club members can vote at the meeting.


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