Report of the Auditing Committee on Athletics.
The Auditing committee elected in January, 1888, continued to serve till March, 1889. On March, 22, 1889, the undergraduate members of the present committee were elected. The member from the committee on athletics was continued, and the chairman was subsequently chosen.
At the meeting of electors held on March 22, 1880, the Articles of Agreement originally adopted in the spring of 1887, were amended as follows: The committee now consists of six members instead of five, and of the four members elected by the undergraduates one is a senior, one a junior, one a sophomore, and one is elected from the college at large. The committee audit the accounts of each organization "at least once each half year, or oftener at their discretion," instead of once a month. The surplus allowed the Foot Ball association 's now $1500 (originally $400). The annual election of the committee is now held in October instead of June, and the meeting of the electors is called by the president of the senior class. The committee elected in October begins to serve immediately.
Five hundred copies of the amended Articles of Agreement were printed and distributed to the college.
The committee regret to report that the Lacrosse association, one of the associations party to the Articles of Agreement, dissuaded in the spring in consequence of lack of financial support.
The committee have provided the treasurers of the different organizations, where it was necessary, with books. They have also provided the captain and manager of each association with a book, in which, at the end of the year to record their office experience and to offer suggestions, for the benefit of their successors.
After careful examination of the treasurers books the committee report as follows:
The Tennis association closed the year with a small surplus, the actual receipts (from September 26. 1878, to July 1, 1888,) having been $1120.90. Besides ordinary outlays, such as wages of men employed to take care of the courts, tournament expenses, printing etc; the interest on the debt of the association has been paid for the year, and the debt has been reduced $150, the sum of $270 has been spent on remaking courts, and a payment of $100 has been made on a die for medals. The debt of the association. which was originally $850, contracted in 1887 for the construction of courts, has now been reduced to $250, and an effort will be made during the coming year to pay off this remainder.
The receipts of the Athletic association for the year were some $200 less than in 1887 88. This resulted from smaller attendance at the winter meetings. The actual expenses for the past year, including bills payable, were something less than in 1887 83. The expenses each year exceeded the receipts, in 1887-88 (when the year began with a balance of over $300) about $300, during the last year, about $450 which is the present debt of the Association. The outlay for sending teams to athletic contests was much less than in 1887-88, but on the other hand many needed repairs on the track on Holmes Field had to be made. These cost over $500. The officers of the association propose to take vigorous measures to pay off the debt at once.
The apprehension expressed by the committee in its supplementary report of May 25, 1889, that the Boat club might not be able to meet the current expenses of the year has happily not been realized. This is due largely to the energy and skill of the treasurer. He closes his accounts with a balance (cash on hand and bills receivable) of $1117.22. Against this are to be set outs adding bills to the amount of $1275.36, leaving an excess of liabilities over assets of only 158.14, a creditable showing in view of the difficulties against which the treasurer contended. The total expenses of the year amounted to $10,076.17. But this large amount must be reduced by the cost of the new launch, $3,250, a special item of expense which was met mainly by subscriptions from graduates collected by Mr. G. T. Keyes. The ordinary expenses of the year were not materially larger than usual. The total receipts of the Boat club from October 3, 1888, to July 30, 1889, were $6435.76. The receipts for the corresponding period in 1882 83, were $6288.70, in 1885 86, $6296.99.
A full statement of the accounts of the football association to date was made in the committees' report published on March 20, 1889, only remains to state the facts at the close of the year. The total receipts of the association, inclusive of the surplus of $1181.86 with which the year's account began, were $4896.88. The total expenses, including bills payable, were $7214.38. The debt at the beginning of the present year was $2117.50. The actual receipts of the association in 1888-89, were $4043.53, less than in 1887-88. The reason of this is stated in the committees' last report.
The baseball association began the year in January with a surplus of $1646.57. Its receipts amounted to $5238.20. Its expenses, including bills payable, to $7298.02. It has a present debt of $413.25. It should be added that prior to January, within the college year 1888-89, the sum of $455.10 had been expended, so that the total expenses for the year amounted to $7753.12. The total expenses in 1887-88 were $7624.63. But the receipts in that year exclusive of surplus, were $9938.49, $4700.29 more than in 1888-89. The decrease in receipts in 1888-89 was due mainly to smaller attendance at the games. To instance the most striking case, the receipts from the two Yale games played in Cambridge in 1887-88 were $6109.56. From the two played here in 1888-89, $2621.35. The management also lowered the price of season tickets in 1888-89, to $2.50. The price was $5 the previous year. More than four times as many tickets were sold last year as in 1887 88, but whether this actually increased the receipts is uncertain. These were two special items of expense in 1888 89 which raised the gross amount. The nine received permission to play with professional teams and at Easter went to Philadelphia. The expenses of this trip were over $600. The guarantees also paid visiting teams were larger in amount and more in number than in 1887 88. The expenses under this item were increased last year about $500.
The committee have instituted comparisons in the above report between the accounts for last year and those for previous years in order to show, first that the expenditures in 1888-90 were not excessive as compared with those of previous years, and so, secondly, that the debts which have been increased are not due to special extravagance, but to decreased income. The committee, however, are convinced from a careful examination of the accounts that in many instances expenses might have been reduced, and believe that this was an imperative duty in view of the certainty of decreased income that faced some of the associations. They deprecate the growing usage referred to in their report of December 4, 1888, by which members of teams at training tables are supported from the general funds of the associations. They believe that the treasurers should furnish in accordance with article 8 of the Articles of Agreement, a detailed estimate of expenses and income at the beginning of each half year, a practice which the committee find it difficult to establish, and that they should furnish vouchers for all money expended.
Two of the associations, the Foot Ball association and the Base Ball association, assumed obligation last spring for a new exercise field. This field was leased for five years, and the annual charges on it amount to about $1,500. These charges are to be paid by the auditing committee from the surplus fund provided for by the Articles of Agreement. The committee have in their hands a sufficient sum, the surplus received from the Base Ball association in 1887-88, to meet the charges for the current year. In 1888-89 there was no surplus, but a debt. The situation demands rigid economy in the administration of the finances of the two associations specially concerned in 1889-90. To its gravity the officers of these associations are fully awake.
JOHN WILLIAMS WHITE, Chairman,WILLIAM HOOPER,PERRY D. TRAFFORD, L. S.J. P. HUTCHINSON, '90,M. WILLIAMS, JR., '91,J. F. BASS, '91.Harvard University, Oct. 31, 1889.