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BTFA forced to reschedule AGM

Bermuda Track and Field Association's (BTFA) annual general meeting was delayed because their financial documentation was not up to date.

Insiders say president Judy Simmons was adamant she would not hold the yearly session for this reason and that members have now been summoned to attend the annual general meeting on March 31.

Mid-Island Striders and others in the athletics community have questioned why the BTFA did not hold an annual general meeting last year, noting that the last one was on December 17, 2003, at which Simmons was returned to office unopposed.

The BTFA's Constitution ? stipulates the following: "The Association shall hold an Annual General Meeting of Members at such time and place as may be determined by the Board, at least once every calendar year and not more than 15 months after the adjournment of the previous Annual General Meeting."

Perhaps mindful of the criticism which they received after the 2003 annual general meeting for not presenting any financial statement or minutes, the BTFA have utilised the maximum 15 months on this occasion.

"The financial statement wasn't in order and Mrs. Simmons had to go back quite a few years to get the accounts up to date," explained a source.

"She said she wasn't having a meeting without the financial statement and it's apparently now updated and she has now called a meeting."

Regarding whether Simmons ? who long ago indicated she would be stepping down after this term ? will stick to her word, nobody knows.

"She is supposed to be stepping down but I couldn't tell you whether that's a definite. She has not said it and I have not heard of anybody else who is running for the position," added the athletics official.

It's widely known that the outgoing BTFA head has been canvassing support within the NACAC (North America, Central America and Caribbean Athletic Association) region for a nomination to run for membership of the International Association of Athletics Federations' (IAAF) council.

However, Simmons ? currently in France for tomorrow's IAAF World Cross-Country Championships in which Jay Donawa is competing? has so far remained tight-lipped on that issue.

"I'm not saying anything about that. I'll talk about it later but not at this time . . . when I am ready to tell you I will tell you," she had told when asked about it last year.

Meanwhile, on the issue of national coach Gerry Swan, who has again come under fire by the vocal Mid-Island Striders club, it is understood that Swan has a contract which is renewed every four years and that he receives an honorarium out of the BTFA's annual grant from the Sports Ministry.