CRESPO STATEMENTS CHALLENGED
by Kevin Bachler and Michael LeBlanc
From Kevin Bachler:
There has been a fair amount posted on the Chessnews.org website about Miississipi and Louisiana dropping out of USCF. (See Richard Crespo's 2/25 posting)
I thought your would find this of interest:
email@example.com <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org> (Richard Crespo) wrote:
>IT'S OFFICIAL; MISSISSIPPI SECEDES FROM THE USCF
Apparently, the letter posted online by Mr. Crespo may be a bit of an embellishment. Here is an e-mail response sent out by the head of the Mississipi Scholastic Chess Organization:
Date: Tue, 27 Feb 2001 09:22:06 -0600
From: "Mike LeBlanc" <mailto:> "><MLEBLANC@PED.UMSMED.EDU>
Subject: Re: Fwd: IT'S OFFICIAL; MS SECEDES FROM THE USCF
This e-mail (the one sent by Mr. Crespo, snipped, see 2/25/01 by Richard Crespo) sent to me and you is far enough from the truth it requires some kind of response.
The meeting Saturday was of the Mississippi Scholastic Chess Organization (MSCO) not the Mississippi Chess Association (MCA). The vote was not about seceding from the USCF, but about requiring USCF membership at our major scholastic events (making them no longer USCF rated events).
The discussion was not about "increased TLA's and membership fees and elimination of state grant funds and affiliate commissions," but about whether the membership fee was making tounament registration so expensive that poorer kids could no longer afford to participate (Requiring USCF membership raised the tournament fee from $10 to $23.).
Many members of MSCO wanted and received assurance before the vote that their children could continue to be members of USCF. MSCO remains a paid affiliate of USCF as does the MCA. The MSCO will continue to encourage USCF membership, but will not require it at all of our tournaments. The motion that passed allows the board to continue to run USCF rated events.
Several MCA members came out to the meeting because they had heard that the MCA president Richard Crespo wanted to pull the MCA out of the USCF and they wish to voice their opposition. They left when informed it was a MSCO meeting, not an MCA meeting. I did determine in discussion with members of the executive board of MCA, that the majority of the MCA board will not support any decision by President Crespo to remove the MCA from the USCF. MCA will remain a paid affiliate of the USCF.
Sincerely, Michael LeBlanc,M.D. president MSCO
Editor's comment: I have asked Mr. Crespo for a response. He confirmed that the meeting was held at the Mississippi State Scholastic Team Championship and that it was a meeting of the MSCO, but also said that the officers of the MCA were present and had their own discussions in which it was decided not to renew the USCF affiliation of MCA. He says that Dr. LeBlanc is not an officer of MCA and was not present at the latter discussions. Regarding the statement by Dr. LeBlanc that "the majority of the MCA board will not support any decision by President Crespo to remove the MCA from the USCF," Mr. Crespo expressed surprise and indicated that he would recheck with board members. If we receive a further statement from him today, we will edit this report to include it.