ARLINGTON, Va. - The Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI) and Gas Appliance Manufacturers Association (GAMA) continue to review and discuss a proposed merger. ARI said that, while there are several issues to consider, members of ARI’s Executive Committee agreed that the main compelling reason to merge is: “A stronger and broader voice for air conditioning, heating, and refrigeration manufacturers to respond to increasing and more complex energy and environmental issues through greater standards, certification, and advocacy activities.”

The committee reviewed several terms of the proposed merger and made recommendations for inclusion in the final agreement. Some of the recommended terms were:

• All of ARI’s standing committees would remain in the new association (membership on the committees would grow to include both ARI and GAMA members).

• All current ARI and GAMA board members would belong to the new board, but through attrition, membership would be eventually reduced to about 67 (42 product section chairs and 25 directors-at-large).

• All product sections and divisions would remain the same, except ARI’s Fan and Blowers and GAMA’s Motors and Blowers sections would be combined.

• The 2008 dues for both organizations would continue to be collected separately, for the time being. For 2009 and beyond, dues would be established by the board of directors. Both organizations would gradually align dues structures, with the goal of avoiding major changes. Overall dues would not increase because of the merger.

Below is a timeline of merger-related discussions and activities:

Nov. 11: ARI board reviews merger documents and makes recommendation to ARI members.

Nov. 12: GAMA board reviews merger documents and makes recommendation to GAMA members.

Nov. 15: Merger materials and proxies sent to ARI and GAMA members for their review.

Dec. 15: Pro-forma ARI and GAMA membership meetings to count member proxies.

Feb. 1 or March 1: New combined association, if approved, incorporated under Virginia law.

Publication date:11/05/2007