THANK YOU: Buckeye Firearms Association enjoys record year in midst of recession
By Jim Irvine
The past year was another record year for Buckeye Firearms Association. Our political action committee (PAC) received more donations from more people than in any other year in our history. While we did spend a considerable sum, it was not a record for spending because it was not an election year. That has resulted in a nice "war chest." We will need all of it and more before the year is out.
Being a PAC, our reports are determined by elections, not a calendar year, so this article will focus on the period between the "2008 Post General" and the "2009 Post General" reports. It roughly covers the period from early December 2008 until early December 2009.
One of the most impressive points is that we had over 1,200 individual donations. THANK YOU for trusting us with your money. We know that the economy has made money a real issue in many households, and we deeply appreciate the trust you put in us. We will continue to earn that trust.
Being an all volunteer group allows us to put 100% of your money toward our cause. We work hard to get the most out of your money. You deserve nothing less.
Donations ranged from $4.95 to $500.00. As you can see by the breakdown, every group is important. Gun owners represent a broad group of people and we need all of them to help make us successful.
- 1,059 donations for $10 or less totaling $4,148
- 256 donations between $11 and $50 totaling $6,162
- 211 donations* between $51 and $100 totaling $15,011
- 131 donations* greater than $100 totaling $20,513.21
*Many of these donations are associated with the Lt Col Dave Grossman event. We expect to host another "Bullet-Proofing The Mind" seminar in Northeast Ohio in 2010.
Major expenses (rounded)
- $8,500 – Buckeye events
- $4,751 - Postage
- $2,433 - Wallet cards
- $2,400 - Brochures
- $3,329 - Political donations
- $2,780 - Information Technology
- $2,000 - Co-host events with US Sportsman Alliance (USSA)
- $1,388 - Paypal fees
- $530 - Bank/master card fees
- $652 - Presence at other events
Explanation of expenses
- Buckeye events:
We had two shooting events and the Grossman event last year. The purpose of these events is to help fund the PAC, but we feel it is important that our supporters have a valuable experience. Each event was a money maker for us, and fun and educational for our guests. More fun is in store for the New Year.
- Brochures, cards and postage:
We print and distribute over 100,000 cards per year. We furnish our brochures and wallet cards to instructors for free so that each of their students has the opportunity to learn about Buckeye Firearms Association. We thank our instructors who are a vital part of our team. This effort has been very helpful to building our grassroots base.
- Political donations:
We are a PAC, and our success is measured by election results and legislation. They are absolutely linked. We do not use donations to "buy influence," as some skeptics believe. Rather we use our donations to help our friends, and to be present at key events where we are able to build the strong relationships with critical people. We need leadership of both parties to understand our issues to make our priorities, their priorities.
- Information Technology:
This includes our web site and email services. While these costs are traditionally very low for grassroots groups, we simply outgrew the free/low cost ways of doing things. We must be able to communicate with our supporters instantly and our web site must remain reliable even on the busiest days. These upgrades allow us to meet those demands. We are fortunate to be in a position to deal with these sorts of "problems."
- Co-hosted events with USSA:
Working together with other successful groups is a great way to show legislators we are united on many goals. There are many great groups and we are privileged for the relationships we enjoy with many of them. When gun owners stick together, we all win.
- Other events:
You can't make converts preaching to the choir. This is money paid to be at an event held by another group, where there are people friendly to our cause. We use these events to reach out to gun owners who do not know about us and those who simply believe in freedom, but are not necessarily gun owners. Getting more people involved is a key to being more effective. These are important events and we would do more if we had the volunteers to help staff the events. Let us know if you are interested.
- Paypal fees:
We know they are not friendly to our cause, but they do a service for us that is worth the price we pay them. Plus the donations they process for us do far more good for gun rights in Ohio then the modest fees they charge could ever do to hurts us.
This year will be very interesting from a political perspective. We will be involved in primary and general elections and we trust you will help us elect those candidates who will work with us to reform our laws and restore our rights.
Jim Irvine is the Buckeye Firearms Association Chairman.
Historical Financial Reports