submitted by
Dr. Anne T. O'Brien
The ACS charge in recent times for WebEx conferences was $4.80/hr/participant/WebEx conference.  In 2009, this group used the Board account for practice sessions, as the Chair had an account.
In 2010, the situation will change.  ACS has changed its electronic meeting vendor from WebEx to A+ and, more recently, to "GoToMeeting."  The charges are somewhat less (~$0.05/person/minute) than they have been for WebEx ($0.08/person/minute).   In 2010, if we use $0.05/person/minute, then an hour conference call will cost $3/hour/person attending.  Thus, our $80 budget should cover about 26 person hours of conference - or about three conferences with 8-9 participants, or four conferences with 6 participants, five conferences with 5 participants, etc.   If people set up their own conference calling, e.g., between two participants, then there is no phone charge, and the system can still be used for presentations, etc.
As we use this allotment in 2010, the NY Section will be responsible only for the phone costs, and not for use of the system as such.  These phone charges are cheaper than Chorus Call or other services.
In order to attract busy members, and young members, to participation, it is important for the Section to gain experience in alternative ways of meeting for conferences/meetings, etc.  There is a plan to enlarge this endeavor in 2010.