[eDebate] NDT Fees
Thu Mar 9 18:46:07 CST 2006
I have taken part in pretty much every side of this debate. I've been,
and continue to be, a consumer of the NDT, bringing teams and
observers, and paying the fees. I serve on the NDT Committee. I've
served on the Board of Trustees. I've recently been a host of the NDT.
I was a co-author of the most recent hosting document.
The people who have written about hosts getting stuck with monumental
food bills after the tournament (and these have sometimes been five
figures) are absolutely right. Our first priority has to be to protect
our hosts. And I know that is the exact concern that drives the high
observer fees, nothing else. The high observer fees are absolutely the
result of very good intentions. The people who look out for our
finances do a fantastic job, and we owe them a great gratitude for
their tireless service.
I would also point out that these hidden costs add up quickly. If
every school has just one person who slips in unaccounted you are
talking about a 10% increase in food costs.
On the other hand, I strongly oppose the current inflexible fee system
Not too long ago it was possible to buy observer food tickets that
excluded the banquet(s).
There are numerous people at the tournament who would gladly forgo
eating at the banquets - and that's over half the cost of the observer
ticket. I have several people in my party who will not be able to
attend the opening banquet. Yet I am in the position of having to pay
for their banquet meal anyhow.
Further, I have two students who will be attending as observers who I
would like to be able to have them admitted to observe the various
awards ceremonies on Thursday and Sunday. Is it really necessary to
buy them $60 banquet meals for that to occur?
I know that the rigidness of the system is in part driven by
enforcement issues. In the case where the host feels that the
single-price ticket is the only way that meal lines can be enforced we
need to error on the side of the host, absolutely.
I know in this year's case the host supports variable prices for
I wish we could find a way to offer meal tickets that excluded the
banquet costs, and find a reasonable way to enforce it.
More information about the Mailman