MAPS Annual Financial Report|
Fiscal Year 1999-2000
June 1, 1999 - May 31, 2000
Jump to: Expenses for Research / Expenses for Educational Purposes / Organizational Expenses / Staff Expenses / Office Expenses
PDF version of this document PDF version of IRS Form 990 for 2000
Normally, MAPS publishes a detailed report of its annual income and expenditures in the calendar year's final issue of the Bulletin. Last December, in a departure from tradition, MAPS published a special issue of the Bulletin with the theme of Psychedelics and Creativity. We wanted to keep the special issue focused on that topic and decided to publish the annual financial report for FY 99-00 in the first issue of this year.
The increasingly heavy workload that MAPS' staff has undertaken has affected the timeliness of this issue of the Bulletin, and therefore of this annual financial report. MAPS' staff time has been devoted both to a growing number of substantive projects, and to an increasing amount of time spent communicating with members, the public, the media and governmental authorities. Subsequent issues of the Bulletin should resume being produced on our regular quarterly schedule.
Staff Time Spent on Media Relations
During the last year, there has been a sustained and substantial growth in the non-medical use of MDMA (Ecstasy), especially among young people. The resultant government crack-down (MAPS submitted testimony on 3/19/01 to the U.S. Sentencing Commission regarding the increase in penalties for the non-medical use of MDMA, /news/) has caused related media interest in MDMA to rise to a rather intense level. Since MAPS is the only organization in the United States actively working to conduct FDA-approved research into the therapeutic uses of MDMA, most journalists contact MAPS at some point in their research. Now that I have finally earned those three magic letters after my name, Ph.D., media people more frequently seem to take me seriously. Amusingly, the first person to ever call me "Doc" was Geraldo Rivera, on Rivera Live, during an MDMA-related segment of his show. The most high-profile exposure in which I've been called Doctor is in the Rolling Stone article (4/26/01) about MDMA, in which I'm called "Doctor X". I wouldn't call myself that, but I can live with it. The MAPS website (/media/) offers a chronological listing and electronic version of many of the media stories on MDMA and/or MAPS.
I feel that its important to allocate substantial time to speak to the media in order to help journalists present the public with a more balanced picture of MDMA. Fortunately, Dr. Charles Grob, an MDMA researcher at Harbor UCLA Medical Center who works closely with MAPS, is also willing to take time to talk with journalists. Public support for the medical uses of MDMA and other psychedelics is important to try to generate in order to create a supportive regulatory climate for MDMA research. In a related context, public support for the medical uses of marijuana has resulted in FDA-approved and NIH-funded research that otherwise might not have been approved or funded.
Yet no matter how much time Dr. Grob and I and other allied experts talk with reporters, the opportunities we have to discuss MDMA's therapeutic potential and to put forward reasonable risk estimates are only a drop in the bucket compared to the tens of millions of dollars of anti-ecstasy ads and other forms of "education" the federal government is funding. Fortunately, the websites that MAPS has helped support, Erowid, DanceSafe, and Alchemind, and also the MAPS website, have attracted tremendous attention and have substantial credibility. Media presentations about MDMA now frequently include at least some mention of MDMA's therapeutic potential and often question the dire pronouncements of some government officials stating that even one dose of MDMA will result in serious and permanent brain damage.
In addition to the time it takes to respond to media, MAPS' wider visibility has resulted in a flood of e-mail. This is, unfortunately, all too common a challenge these days. As many people have experienced, it's difficult to keep one's head above the rising waters of e-mail.
Despite the struggles, it's a privilege and a joy to work at MAPS. The following report will explain in detail how MAPS allocated its financial resources in FY 1999-2000. From this report, MAPS members can see MAPS' strategy in action as well as ascertain our priorities. Comments of all types are invited.
MAPS Financial Overview
Income and expenditures increased dramatically from FY 98-99 to FY 99-00. Income in FY 98-99 was $308,743, while income in FY 99-00 was $555,292. Expenditures in FY 98-99 amounted to $280,194 while total expenditures for FY 99-00 were $533,482.
Most of the growth in income and expenditures was due to the expansion of MAPS' educational efforts, both directly and through MAPS' support of the educational efforts of three other organizations; DanceSafe (dancesafe.org), Erowid (erowid.org) and Alchemind (alchemind.org). MAPS also began preparations to publish Dr. Karl Jansen's book about ketamine, helped fund Dr. Rick Strassman's efforts to write a book about DMT research, and supported to varying degrees several scientific conferences.
In the area of research, MAPS participated in a historic milestone. A MAPS-supported study, to be conducted under the direction of Jose Carlos Bouso, Ph.D. candidate at the University de Autonoma de Madrid, Spain, became the world's first government-approved, placebo-controlled scientific study of the therapeutic use of MDMA. Patient recruitment has been slow and only one subject has been treated so far. The dose was 50 milligrams, well below the desired therapeutic level. Nevertheless, there were some promising effects and an absence of negative consequences. Major efforts are being made to recruit the additional 28 subjects.
In FY 99-00, MAPS' most expensive and top priority effort has been the sponsoring of a mammoth effort to review all the scientific literature on MDMA published in peer-reviewed journals, for submission to the FDA and to other regulatory agencies around the world. Matt Baggott has been leading the literature review team, with excellent full-time assistance from Ilsa Jerome in Boston and part-time assistance from R. Stuart and Michael Bauer in San Francisco.
Associated with the MDMA literature review project has been an MDMA bibliography project, under the direction of Earth and Fire at Erowid (see page 19 for an update on this project.) We are creating an electronic database listing every study ever published, with digitized PDF copies to permit regulatory authorities, researchers and students to access the basic data upon which our risk assessments are based.
Finally, MAPS has been coordinating the development of an MDMA-assisted psychotherapy protocol for submission to the FDA. The study, under the direction of Dr. Michael Mithoefer, Dr. Kathleen Brady, Annie Mithoefer R.N., and Mark Wagner, Ph.D., is designed as a preliminary pilot study. The study will gather basic information about the safety and efficacy of the use of two MDMA-assisted psychotherapy sessions in patients suffering from chronic Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). If approved, and I believe that some variation of what we submit to the FDA will be approved, the study will be the first scientific investigation of the use of MDMA in a patient population since MDMA was criminalized in 1985. The study will mark the start of MAPS' $5 million, 5-year pharmaceutical drug development plan to transform MDMA into an FDA-approved prescription medicine. A Clinical Plan explaining the assumptions behind this estimate can be found on the MAPS website at: /research/mdmaplan.html.
MAPS helped Dr. Evgeny Krupitsky lay the groundwork in FY 99-00 for a conceptually exciting study of the use of ketamine-assisted psychotherapy in the treatment of heroin addicts. The study, designed in FY 99-00 and begun in FY 00-01, will test the effects of multiple (3) sessions of ketamine-assisted psychotherapy, as compared to one session of ketamine-assisted psychotherapy and two non-drug therapy sessions. This study moves us beyond the one dose/miracle cure approach into a more practical and realistic understanding of the profound but limited potential of psychedelic psychotherapy. (see page 13 for an update on this study.)
In FY 99-00, MAPS purchased (from a DEA-licensed laboratory) the world's most expensive gram of psilocybin! MAPS is seeking to have the psilocybin approved by the FDA for use in a study that is already approved by the FDA. The study will evaluate the use of psilocybin in the treatment of patients with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and will take place at the University of Arizona, Tucson, under the leadership of Dr. Francisco Moreno and Dr. Pedro Delgado. Once the psilocybin is determined to meet FDA standards, likely to occur soon, the first FDA-approved study of the therapeutic use of psilocybin in a patient population in over twenty-five years will begin. (see page 15 for an update on this study.)
Medical Marijuana Overview
Regarding medical marijuana, MAPS started working in FY 99-00 to obtain permission from state (Massachusetts Department of Public Health) and federal (DEA) regulators to establish a small medical marijuana production facility. The purpose of the facility is to produce high-potency marijuana for use exclusively in FDA-approved protocols. MAPS received a grant of $20,000 from Peter Lewis for this effort. Preliminary research and team-building took place in FT 99-00. The project is now steadily gathering momentum, though no formal application has yet been submitted.
MAPS, in association with CANORML, planned in FY 99-00 and initiated in FY 00-01 a study of the constituents of marijuana "smoke", or more accurately marijuana "vapor." The basic concept is that vaporizers heat the marijuana plant but don't burn it, in a sense boiling out the cannabinoids and other materials. Due to the lack of combustion, the vaporizer may be a "safer" delivery system. (see page 20 for an update on this study.)
MAPS also experienced a major staff change in FY 99-00, in that Sylvia Thyssen moved to San Francisco to work for DanceSafe. Sylvia had been with MAPS since 1993, and adjusting to her departure was not easy. This year, Carla Higdon is departing. (see page 49 for her letter.)
The new team in Sarasota is composed of two full-time staff members, Maggie Hall and Nicole Tavernier. They work out of Arcturus, the home I designed and built at age 21, in the hopes that construction would help me get grounded after a series of difficult psychedelic experiences. Also in Sarasota is Mercedes Paulino, who works part-time out of her home, running the MAPS website and other information-related tasks. I'm still located in Boston.
Detailed Income Report
The primary reason for the dramatic rise in MAPS' income in FY 99-00 is that MAPS served as a fiscal sponsor for three other non-profit groups working on psychedelic-related educational activities, DanceSafe (dancesafe.org), Erowid (erowid.org) and Alchemind (alchemind.org). More than 25% of MAPS' income and expenditures in FY 99-00 ($155,285) were restricted donations for the educational activities of these three organizations. The organizational mission of these groups fell within the broad scope of MAPS' own charter and mission, yet the specific projects these groups were developing were not being worked on by MAPS' core staff. MAPS was the fiscal sponsor for these groups while their founders and staff worked toward establishing their organizations and obtaining IRS approval for their own non-profit status. In order to assist these groups as much as possible, MAPS chose not to take any fees for being a fiscal sponsor and passed through 100% of the donations that were restricted for use by these groups.
Income came primarily from about 1900 members, roughly the same number of members as last year. (MAPS' goal is to increase membership to at least 2,500.) Nineteen individuals and one corporation gave $1,000 or more, for a total of $214,365, while nine foundations gave $155,935. The remaining $184,992 came from the rest of the membership, book sales, and income on investments.
The nine foundations that donated to MAPS in FY 99-00 include the Promind Foundation ($93,286), Smart Family Foundation ($22,000), Place Foundation ($20,000), Low Wood Foundation ($7,000), Angelica Foundation ($4,000), Jewish Communal Fund ($3,000), Zimmer Family Foundation ($2,650), Tarcher Family Foundation ($2,500), and the Odyssey Foundation ($1,500). The individuals or corporations that donated $1,000 or more include John Gilmore ($78,480), Robert Barnhart ($26,000), Ray Joseph Greenwell ($25,000), Tim Butcher ($24,400), Melisa Richardson ($10,000), Paul Phillips ($10,000), Anonymous ($7,000), Betsy Gordon ($5,273), Andrew Stone ($5,086), Ivan Kruglak ($5,000), Jack Adams ($3,000), Richard Wolfe ($3,000), Marsha Rosenbaum ($2,500), Julie Holland, who donated to MAPS' Holland Fund for Therapeutic MDMA Research and to which she invites others to contribute ($2,125), Anonymous ($2,000), Mark Williams ($1,500), Anonymous ($1,000), Anonymous ($1,000), Jamie Williams ($1,000), and Perfect Fungi Europe ($1,000).
More than half of MAPS' $533,482 in total expenditures in FY 99-00, $309,045, were devoted to various facets of its' educational mission. A total of $75,200 was spent on research projects. Staff expenditures totaled $131,311, while office-related expenses amounted to $17,925. These expenditures will be discussed in detail below in the section explaining each line item in the expense spreadsheet that accompanies this report.
MAPS' net assets were $379,423 as of the close of FY 99-00 on May 31, 2000. As a non-profit organization, MAPS' goal is to advance its mission, not to amass net assets. However, a reasonable amount of net assets empowers MAPS to achieve its goals. Net assets give a measure of stability to meet organizational expenses in the face of fluctuating contributions from membership. More importantly, net assets give MAPS the ability to commit to fund high-priority projects still in the development stages, should the projects be approved. As a result, researchers who work with MAPS are willing to invest their time and energy in the lengthy and time-consuming protocol development and approval process confident that if approval is eventually obtained, their research project will indeed be funded.
Of MAPS' $379,423 in net assets at the close of FY 99-00, $40,000 is not available for use but represents the net present value of MAPS' remainder interest in a home that MAPS will receive in its entirety in forty to fifty years. Roughly $200,000 will be needed for the MDMA/PTSD research project MAPS is seeking to initiate in the United States, should it be approved (which I expect it will be). About $100,000 will be needed for the medical marijuana production facility MAPS is trying to establish should lightening strike and DEA permission is actually granted for this project.
As a matter of fiscal strategy, MAPS will seek to raise new funds for all projects in development that do become approved. If new funds can be obtained for approved projects, MAPS can retain some net assets along with the ability to guarantee funding to additional pioneering studies in the development phase, should they also become approved. Of course, MAPS can only pledge to fund projects whose cost is lower than MAPS' unallocated assets.
The major way I look at MAPS' net assets is in comparison with the estimated cost of achieving MAPS' primary goal, that being to obtain FDA approval for the medical use of MDMA as an adjunct to psychotherapy. Based on what I believe are reasonable financial assumptions, I've estimated that it will cost $5 million and take 5 years to conduct sufficient research to demonstrate to the satisfaction of the FDA the safety and efficacy of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in the treatment of patients suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). (see the Clinical Plan at: /research/mdmaplan.html.) From this perspective, MAPS' current net assets are sufficient only for the first steps of this clinical plan. However, I've always believed, and so far have had that belief confirmed, that funding can and will be obtained for all the successive steps in the research process, once the protocols are fully approved and ready to be implemented.
Request for Feedback
As in previous years, MAPS' statement of income and expenses is published in the Bulletin along with a detailed explanation of the individual expense items. In this way, MAPS members can review exactly how their donations were allocated and what expenses were incurred. This report is an invitation for dialogue; MAPS members are encouraged to review this report and share with the staff any comments, suggestions or questions that they would like to offer. MAPS will continue to flourish only to the extent that the expenditures it makes correspond closely to the priorities of its members. As a result, we publish this detailed accounting and seek your input.
Expenses For Research
In FY 99-00, MAPS spent $58,669 on expenditures related to MDMA research. Of that total, MAPS spent $13,746 for protocol design, approval, and preliminary implementation expenses for the world's first and still only government-approved study of the therapeutic use of MDMA. The study, entirely funded by MAPS, is taking place in Madrid at the University de Autonoma de Madrid, Spain, under the direction of Jose Carlos Bouso, Ph.D. Candidate. The study is a dose-response pilot study designed to evaluate the effects of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in the treatment of female survivors of sexual assault suffering from chronic Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Subjects are required to have participated in at least one other treatment effort before enrolling in the MDMA study. One patient has been treated to date.
MAPS allocated $19,923 in FY 99-00 for researchers and consultants to begin the process of reviewing all the scientific literature on MDMA. When MAPS initiated the review, it was intended to be used first as support for a protocol to be submitted to FDA by Charles Grob, M.D., Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. The protocol will be designed to evaluate the use of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in the treatment of depression in end-stage cancer patients. Dr. Grob's protocol will likely be submitted to the FDA in Fall 2001. Promind Foundation made substantial contributions to the MDMA literature review project.
As it turns out, the literature review will first be submitted to the FDA in May 2001 in support of a protocol designed to study the use of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in the treatment of patients suffering from chronic PTSD. This study will be conducted in Charleston, South Carolina, with Dr. Michael Mithoefer, a psychiatrist, and Annie Mithoefer, a registered nurse, working as the male/female co-therapist team. Dr. Mithoefer has been board certified in emergency medicine, internal medicine and psychiatry. Both Michael and Annie Mithoefer have studied under Dr. Stan Grof and are certified Holotropic Breathwork practitioners. Co-investigators are Dr. Kathleen Brady and Mark Wagner, Ph.D.
This MDMA/PTSD protocol represents the culmination of almost two years of work conducted by MAPS-funded researchers. MAPS funded the assembling of a complete digitized bibliography of the entire scientific literature on MDMA published in peer-reviewed scientific journals (about 900 papers), the writing of a comprehensive review of the published data, as well as the latest unpublished data from on-going government-approved clinical trials with MDMA, the bringing together of an outstanding team of researchers to design the protocol, and the gathering of a group of experts to critique the proposed protocol design prior to submission to FDA.
MAPS allocated $11,000 in FY 99-00 to Alex Gamma, Ph.D., for his work writing several scientific papers based on MDMA research he conducted at the University of Zurich under the direction of Dr. Franz Vollenweider. For more information on these papers, see the MAPS website list of completed MDMA projects. Promind Foundation donated $10,000 toward Dr. Gamma's project.
MAPS allocated $14,000 for the analysis by a DEA-licensed lab of samples of Ecstasy pills sent in anonymously from around the country. It costs $100 to analyze each pill, but is free to the people who send in the pills. The purpose of the pill analysis research project was to determine what Ecstasy pills actually contained. This was undertaken as harm reduction research, with the results made public on the DanceSafe website. The study revealed that a substantial percentage of Ecstasy pills contained absolutely no MDMA and often contained potentially dangerous adulturants. For more details, see http://www.dancesafe.org/currentresults.html
The costs of this program were funded by the Promind Foundation.
Psilocybin in the Treatment of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
MAPS purchased the world's most expensive gram of psilocybin in FY 99-00, at a cost of $10,527. The drug is for an FDA-approved study of the use of psilocybin in the treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder. The study will be conducted at the University of Arizona, directed by Dr. Francisco Moreno and Dr. Pedro Delgado. The protocol and informed consent for this study are on the MAPS website at /news/1099news.html
This study has not yet treated its first patient. In November 2000, FDA requested more analytical data from the DEA-licensed manufacturer of the psilocybin to ensure that the drug is safe for use in humans. In FY 00-01, MAPS paid $1,750 for this additional analytical data, which has satisfied the insatiable FDA. When the first patient is treated, it will mark the first time in over twenty-five years that psilocybin has been given to a patient in the context of an FDA-approved study. This research project is yet another example of the need for patience in seeking approval for psychedelic research. The protocol was approved by the FDA in September, 1998. The two and a half years since then have been focused solely on obtaining an FDA-approved supply of psilocybin. MAPS decided to have new supplies manufactured after it proved impossible to obtain any from the National Institue of Drug Abuse (NIDA) or the National Institute on Mental Health (NIMH).
Bastiaans LSD Follow-up
In FY 99-00, MAPS paid the second installment of $2,500 for costs associated with a follow-up study of Dutch psychiatrist Dr. Jan Bastiaans' patients, whom he treated for PTSD with LSD-assisted psychotherapy. The study was conducted by Dutch researchers Hans Ossebaard and Nicole Maalste. Many of Dr. Bastiaans subjects were concentration camp survivors. This study provides promising anecdotal evidence suggesting that further research into the use of psychedelically-assisted psychotherapy in patients with PTSD should be conducted. For more information on the results of this study, see /news-letters/v09n2/09203maa.html
Marijuana in the Treatment of Migraines
MAPS allocated $2,000 to Dr. Ethan Russo, University of Montana, to support his efforts to conduct FDA-approved research into the use of marijuana in the treatment of migraine sufferers. Dr. Russo obtained both local Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval and FDA approval for his study. The $2,000 that MAPS donated was for Dr. Russo's ultimately fruitless efforts to obtain from NIDA a legal source of FDA-approved marijuana for his study.
Marijuana is the only Schedule 1 drug for which NIDA has a monopoly on the supply that can be used in FDA-approved clinical trials. Unfortunately, NIDA is less than enthusiastic about facilitating research into the potential therapeutic benefits of smoking the marijuana plant. On May 21, 1999, NIDA and Health and Human Services (HHS) established a policy whereby research with marijuana became subjected to more reviews than any other drug in the United States. Research must now be approved, not only by the FDA and an IRB, but also by a special committee of the Public Health Service (PHS). This PHS committee rejected Dr. Russo's protocol even though all he and MAPS were seeking was the right to purchase low-quality marijuana at high prices from NIDA for an FDA-approved study. No government money was requested for the study. For the sorry history of the effort to research marijuana in the treatment of migraines, see /mmj/mjrusso.html
MAPS, Dr. Russo and the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) tried to make the proverbial lemonaide out of this lemon. On February 20, 2001, we submitted an Amicus Curiae brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in the Oakland Cannabis Buyer's Cooperative medical marijuana case (/mmj/maps-mppbrief.html). We have tried to turn our frustrating experience with NIDA to the advantage of medical marijuana patients by letting the U.S. Supreme Court know that for marijuana, the FDA drug development process is politically obstructed. The basic point of our brief is that these obstructions create a compelling case for the medical necessity defense for patients who run into conflict with the police over their use of marijuana as medicine.
Dr. Russo has decided to abandon his struggle to conduct FDA-approved research into marijuana's therapeutic potential in treating migraine patients. Instead, he has designed a basic safety study to evaluate the health of those few patients remaining alive who legally receive marijuana from NIDA as part of the Compassionate Investigational New Drug (IND) program, which in 1992 was closed by HHS to any additional patients. MAPS has pledged $10,000 for this study. (see page 21 of this issue for more details about this study.)
MAPS donated $1,100 to Dr. Evgeny Krupitsky's ketamine research investigating the use of ketamine-assisted psychotherapy in the treatment of heroin addicts. The amount we donated in FY 99-00 year was minimal, since Dr. Krupitsky had completed his initial study in heroin addicts comparing the effects of a high-dose ketamine session to a low-dose/placebo ketamine session. In FY 99-00, Dr. Krupitsky mostly focused on data analysis and the design of a new study.
Dr. Krupitsky's initial study demonstrated statistically significant advantages in sobriety in patients receiving the high-dose ketamine session as compared to patients receiving the low dose/placebo session. As a result, Dr. Krupitsky requested funding to conduct a 5-year study comparing multiple (three) high doses of ketamine one month apart with a single high dose and two non-drug therapy sessions. This new protocol design is quite exciting since it moves beyond the one-dose/miracle cure model, popular in the 1960s, but not demonstrated to have long-lasting benefits. The new study explores the use of multiple psychedelic psychotherapy sessions integrated within an ongoing therapeutic relationship. MAPS and Heffter Research Institute have agreed to share equally in the costs of this study, budgeted at $9,450 for each organization for each of the five years of the study. This study has been initiated in FY 00-01 (see page 13 of this issue for the latest update). The protocol is on the MAPS website at /research/ketamine/kprotocol2.html
Takiwasi is a drug treatment center in Peru that uses ayahuasca and other herbal medicines to treat patients with addictive disorders. MAPS donated $400 to Takiwasi, which MAPS received as a restricted grant for that purpose. For more information on Takiwasi, see /news-letters/v06n3/06324aya.html
Expenses for Educational Purposes
MAPS MDMA Conference, Dead Sea, Israel, August 1999
MAPS allocated $60,972 for the costs of organizing a conference on MDMA at the Dead Sea, Israel. This sum includes the costs of the conference itself, which MAPS obtained from a small group of donors (Tim Butcher donated $17,500), and the costs of the optional pre-conference tour, which was organized by MAPS and paid for by the tour participants.
MAPS' MDMA conference was attended by at least one representative from every team in the world that had obtained governmental permission to administer MDMA to human volunteers in the context of clinical research. The purpose of this conference was twofold; to facilitate communication and collaboration between the world's MDMA researchers, and to educate representatives of the Israeli Ministry of Health as part of MAPS' efforts to start research in Israel into the use of MDMA in the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). For more information on this conference, see /news-letters/v09n4/09402dob.html
Due to the increased level of violence in the Middle East stemming from the failure of the peace talks, the need for new treatments for PTSD is greater than ever. However, MDMA psychotherapy research remains controversial in Israel. It now seems that the Israeli authorities are waiting until after the FDA approves MDMA psychotherapy research before permitting a MAPS-funded MDMA/PTSD study to take place in Israel. An April 2001 article on MDMA from the Israeli newspaper, Haaretz, which mentions MAPS' efforts to start MDMA/PTSD research in Israel, can be found on the MAPS website in the section on MAPS in the media.
MAPS received and disbursed $100,672 to DanceSafe, a rave and dance culture harm reduction organization focused mostly on MDMA (Ecstasy) and other drugs used in the rave context. DanceSafe used some of its resources to create and maintain its website, which presents detailed and credible information about MDMA and other drugs. Dancesafe.org attracted a large number of visitors, in excess of the number of visitors to the various governmental websites established by NIDA and other agencies in order to provide their own version of drug education. DanceSafe also wrote, designed and published printed informational brochures to hand out at raves and in other venues.
DanceSafe's boldest harm reduction activity, which generated substantial media attention, was to pioneer the use of MDMA testing kits at raves, designed to determine whether pills sold as Ecstasy actually contained any MDMA. The test kits were used at raves by DanceSafe's local chapters, which were established around the country. DanceSafe also assumed responsibility for managing and funding the more sophisticated laboratory-based pill testing program that MAPS had initiated.
Sylvia Thyssen, who had worked at MAPS since 1993, moved to San Francisco at the end of FY 99-00 in order to work full-time for DanceSafe, moving out of the MAPS frying pan (with its relatively conservative research agenda) into the DanceSafe fire (with its more controversial harm-reduction agenda). MAPS continued to act as DanceSafe's fiscal sponsor in FY 00-01. Among others, Ray Joseph Greenwell donated $25,000 for DanceSafe, John Gilmore donated $20,000, and Paul Phillips donated $10,000.
MAPS received and disbursed $28,852 to Erowid.org, an educational website focused on providing information about psychoactive plants and drugs. Erowid is the most frequently visited psychoactive drug information site on the web. Erowid is currently (April 2001) getting an average of more than 20,000 unique visitors and more than 220,000 pages served a day. Erowid does not accept advertising on its site, which could generate significant income, but prefers to provide information in a non-commercial, non-judgmental context. Erowid relies on donations to support staff costs. In FY 99-00, Promind Foundation donated $27,263 to MAPS for Erowid. MAPS continued to act as Erowid's fiscal sponsor in FY 00-01.
Through a not completely coincidental turn of events, the creators of Erowid (Earth and Fire Erowid) and I all went to college together at New College of the University of South Florida, that bastion of academic experimentation that coupled rigorous academic standards with a fundamental belief in the value of facilitating each student's exercise of his or her own intellectual curiosities.
MAPS received and disbursed $25,761 in FY 99-00 to Alchemind, a non-profit educational organization founded and directed by attorney Richard Boire and Wrye Sententia. Alchemind publishes a journal that monitors and comments on legal issues related to the use of psychedelic plants and drugs for a full range of purposes including spiritual, therapeutic, creativity-enhancing, and recreational. Alchemind also maintains an informative website, at alchemind.org. Alchemind describes its mission as follows: "We seek to foster cognitive liberty; the right of each individual to think independently, to use the full spectrum of his or her mind, and to engage in multiple modes of thought and alternative states of consciousness."
Promind Foundation donated $28,505 to MAPS for Alchemind in FY 99-00. ($18,505 of Promind's donation was not disbursed to Alchemind until FY 00-01.) MAPS continued to act as fiscal sponsor for Alchemind in FY 00-01.
Web-Based Psychedelic Bibliography - New Research
MAPS allocated $2,200 in FY 99-00 to Matt Baggott for his work monitoring the scientific literature for human clinical research with psychedelics. Studies identified by Matt were added to the psychedelic bibliography (/wwwpb/). In addition, Matt submitted comments on the findings of some of the more interesting studies to the MAPS Bulletin, the MAPS Forum, (an electronic discussion group to be discussed below), as well as to other researchers. This project was an adjunct to the MDMA literature review that Matt was coordinating for MAPS. This project was placed on hold in FY 00-01 in order to permit Matt to concentrate fully on the review of the scientific literature on MDMA.
Work on the web-based psychedelic bibliography was supported by a grant from Promind Foundation.
Albert Hofmann Foundation LSD/Psilocybin Bibliography
MAPS allocated $2,012 to the development of an on-line bibliography that will list all published articles on LSD and psilocybin. These funds were spent on development of customized software for the bibliography and on data-entry. The project was funded by a grant from the Promind Foundation. To access the bibliography, see /wwwpb/
A collection of nearly all of the scientific peer-reviewed published articles on LSD and psilocybin is in the possession of the Albert Hofmann Foundation. The bibliography project will expand substantially during FY 01-02 with the goal of creating a PDF file of each paper, linked to each bibliographic entry. A substantial number of volunteers will be needed to complete this project at an affordable cost. This project is being supported by the Promind Foundation. (For more information, see the article on page 19 in this Bulletin.)
DMT - The Spirit Molecule, by Dr. Rick Strassman
In FY 99-00, MAPS received a series of restricted grants from Robert Barnhart totalling $18,000. The purpose of these grants were to provide financial support for Dr. Rick Strassman so that he could focus on writing a book about his experiences conducting FDA-approved psychedelic research, primarily with DMT but also somewhat with psilocybin. Dr. Strassman's book, DMT-The Spirit Molecule, was published by Inner Traditions in 2001. The book is selling well and a second print run has already been initiated.
Ketamine: Dreams and Realities, by Dr. Karl Jansen
MAPS allocated $1,992 in FY 99-00 for the editing of Dr. Karl Jansen's book, Ketamine: Dreams and Realities. Jon Hanna was the editor and did a wonderfully thorough and insightful job; Mercedes Paulino compiled the exhaustive index (which nearly drove her back to her home planet). Ketamine: Dreams and Realities was published by MAPS in 2001. Dr. Jansen's book is being well received and is available from MAPS at /kdreams/index.html.
Emanuel Sferios, founder of DanceSafe, wrote the introduction to the book. Promind Foundation donated $9,672 to MAPS in FY 99-00 to support the editing and printing costs of this book (The remaining portion of this donation was allocated to printing costs in FY 00-01).
LSD Psychotherapy, by Dr. Stan Grof
In 2001, MAPS published a new paperback edition of Dr. Stan Grof's classic work, LSD Psychotherapy, with a new introduction by Dr. Andrew Weil and eight pages of new color plates. Though none of the expenses for printing this book (about $15,000) or any of the donations to support the printing costs of this book (Promind Foundation- $8,000 and John Buchanan- $2,500) took place in FY 99-00, I'm mentioning this book anyway to call attention to its availability.
To order LSD Psychotherapy see /lsdtherapy/index.html.
The Secret Chief, by Myron Stolaroff,
Ecstasy: Dance, Trance and Transformation,
by Nicholas Saunders with Rick Doblin, with a bibliography by Sasha Shulgin
MAPS paid royalties to Myron Stolaroff in FY 99-00 amounting to $1,587.64. MAPS paid royalties to Sasha Shulgin amounting to $166.15.
Orenda Institute Conference - Hollyhock, British Columbia, Canada
Richard Yensen, Ph.D. and Dr. Donna Dryer, Orenda Institute, organized an invitational conference focused on the use of altered states of consciousness in religious and therapeutic contexts. MAPS allocated $10,000 in FY 99-00 toward this conference, after receiving a restricted grant in that amount from the Promind Foundation.
Psychedelic Elders Conference
MAPS allocated $5,273 in FY 99-00 for the organization of the interviews and transcripts gathered as part of the Psychedelic Elders conference which took place in November of 1998. MAPS received a restricted donation for this purpose by Betsy Gordon. The Elders conference, which was sponsored primarily by the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS), gathered together many of the early pioneers of psychedelic research, including Albert Hofmann on his last visit to the United States, Laura Huxley, Ram Dass, Stan Grof, Ralph Metzner, Myron Stolaroff, and others, including a few representatives of the younger generation of researchers. The conference focused on a discussion of how psychedelics had affected the Elders' views of reality and spirituality, and on suggestions for the successful integration of psychedelics into Western culture.
MAPS allocated $1,000 to the first international conference on ibogaine, organized by Dr. Ken Alper at New York University. The conference took place November 5-6, 1999. The clinical portion of the conference was focused primarily on the use of ibogaine in the treatment of addiction.
MAPS spent $3,600 in FY 99-00 on the MAPS Forum, an electronic discussion group available for free to MAPS members and non-members alike. This discussion group has about 1600 subscribers and generates some lively and substantive discussions. The Forum is skillfully moderated by Jon Frederick, Ph.D candidate at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. (Jon is going to receive his Ph.D in June, 2001, with a dissertation focusing on the use of the EEG for brain wave analysis). The Forum is archived on the MAPS website at http://www.cerebral.org/Maps/maillist.html.
The MAPS Forum is funded by a grant from the Promind Foundation.
MAPS spent $23,876 on printing the MAPS Bulletin in FY 99-00. The Bulletin is MAPS' primary means of communications with its members. MAPS also sends the Bulletin for free as an educational tool to about 350 scientists, government officials, drug war prisoners, and academics. In addition, about 750 copies of the two color cover issues per year are sent to distributors for sale on newsstands. The $23,876 that MAPS spent on the Bulletin in FY 99-00 was almost exactly the same as the $23,497 spent in FY 98-99.
The costs of MAPS' Bulletin are rather high for an organization of MAPS' size. This is due primarily to the length of the Bulletins and to the extra expense of the two color cover issues. In this age of the Internet, with its instant and virtually cost-free communication, MAPS expenditures on its Bulletin need to be evaluated carefully.
I've come to the conclusion that hard-copy issues of the Bulletin are still important to MAPS' educational and community-building mission. The Bulletins act as a permanent physical record of MAPS' activities, of the scientific research papers that are presented within the Bulletin, and of topics of interest to the MAPS community. It's more pleasurable to read hard copy than a computer screen, and the Bulletin provides MAPS members with the opportunity to show something tangible to their friends who may wish to learn more about MAPS and its agenda.
However, the use of the Bulletin to transmit information of a timely nature, or of an extremely detailed nature like a long protocol or literature review, is limited. This sort of information is more efficiently communicated through the MAPS website. I'd like to expand the use of the MAPS website for more timely and detailed content. I'd also like to expand the use of e-mail to send out occasional time-sensitive messages to MAPS members, so please consider sending your current e-mail address to the MAPS office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MAPS is going to experiment with focusing the next two color cover Bulletins on themes that speak to broader topics than just MAPS' pharmaceutical drug development efforts, which seek primarily to move psychedelics and marijuana through the FDA drug review and approval process. These upcoming issues will be similar to the recent Psychedelics and Creativity issue which was enthusiatically received and is turning out to be the first MAPS Bulletin that we have ever reprinted. The two non-color cover issues will continue to focus on articles more directly related to MAPS' projects, research reviews, general updates, interviews, conference reports, book reviews, and other such content.
MAPS spent $7,986 on postage in FY 99-00. This compares to $8,761 in FY 98-99. MAPS is trying to use the internet for communications where possible in order to further reduce expenses for postage.
MAPS spent $1,617 on photocopies in FY 99-00, compared to $2,858 in FY98-99. This reduction probably represents savings due to our increased use of the internet to send information to people who request it.
MAPS spent $6,108 in FY 99-00 on telephone bills. This compares to $7,262 in FY 98-99. This savings represents the continued decrease in the per-minute cost of long-distance calls.
MAPS spent $2,960 in FY 99-00 on internet connections. This compares to $1,787 in FY 98-99. This increase reflects the added cost of high-speed internet connections, as well as the costs associated with the use of the secure server.
Books and Tapes
MAPS spent $341 in FY 99-00 on books and tapes for resale to MAPS members. This compares to $1,539 in FY 98-99. This savings reflects the reductions in sales of Ecstasy: Dance, Trance and Transformation, which we didn't publish ourselves but still sold through the Bulletin, as well several other items.
MAPS Ads and Membership Drive
MAPS spent $3,616 in FY 99-00 on ads and membership drive expenses such as small, limited mailings. This compares to $9,158 in FY 98-99. This substantial decline reflects reductions in ads for The Secret Chief, the absence of ads for other MAPS books which didn't get published in FY 99-00, and the decision to focus on obtaining approval for one or more major research projects before going to the public seeking additional members.
MAPS spent $402 in FY 99-00 on books, subscriptions, tapes and other sources of information. This compares to $1,561 in FY 98-99. This decline is not due to the fact that we MAPS staff members knew more in FY 99-00 than in 98-99 (I wish). Perhaps it is due to the fact that I was completing my dissertation in FY 99-00 and expanded my ability to find information for free on the web.
MAPS spent $8,926 on staff travel in FY 99-00, compared to $9,855 in FY 98-99. This slight reduction is probably due to the fact that I was completing my dissertation and didn't want to venture too far from my computer.
MAPS spent $3,745 on conference fees in FY 99-00, compared to $2,757 in FY 98-99. This increase is due to higher conferences fees for the conferences that MAPS sent staff members to attend.
MAPS spent $5,023 on professional services in FY 99-00, as compared to $3,712 in FY 98-99. This increase is due in part to MAPS' larger budget and the associated need for additional accounting services, as well additional costs associated with computer consultants to expand our software and to develop video content for the MAPS website.
Salary, Benefits and Taxes
MAPS spent $113, 617 for three full-time staff in FY 99-00. This compares to $100,134 in FY 98-99. This increase reflects raises in salaries and in the cost of health care benefits to Sylvia Thyssen and Carla Higdon. In addition, a small portion of this increase was due to the hiring of Maggie Hall near the end of FY 99-00, in order for her to receive training from Sylvia, many of whose responsibilities she assumed after Sylvia's departure.
Rick Doblin's salary remained at $30,000 in both FY 98-99 and FY 99-00, with no health care benefits in either year. Sylvia Thyssen's salary increased in FY 99-00 to $32,600, from $28,600, with full health care benefits. Carla Higdon's salary increased in FY 99-00 to $26,880, from $22,880.
Both Sylvia Thyssen and Carla Higdon, though not Rick Doblin, also received payments into a retirement account set up by MAPS for their benefit. A total of $3,300 was placed into Carla's account, while a total of $5,220 was placed into Sylvia's account, reflecting her seniority at MAPS.
As with most non-profit organizations, MAPS' salaries are lower than those for jobs in the private-sector with comparable skills and responsibilities. The lower salary is compensated for by the satisfaction of working on issues that have personal and social relevance. This wage disparity is also due to the fact that a large fraction of MAPS' income consists of restricted funds that go 100% to projects or other organizations, leaving less for organizational expenses than a quick glance at MAPS' FY 99-00 income of $555,292 would suggest.
For FY 00-01, Rick Doblin's salary remained at $30,000, without health care benefits. Sylvia Thyssen moved to SF and started working for DanceSafe as of the end of FY 99-00. Carla Higdon received a raise from $26,880 to $28,224. The amount going into her retirement account increased from $3,300 to $4,740. Health care benefits stayed the same. Maggie Hall was hired as the third full-time staff member at a salary of $26,880, with retirement benefits of $1,260 and full health care benefits. Mercedes Paulino was hired several months into FY 00-01 as a part-time staff member whose responsibilities included being in charge of MAPS' website at a salary of $12.50 an hour, with full health-care benefits but no retirement contributions.
MAPS spent $3,025 on office supplies in FY 99-00, compared to $2,075 in FY 98-99.
Office rent and power was $6,799 in FY 99-00, compared to $3,967 in FY 98-99. Office rent did not increase in Sarasota in FY 99-00. Rather, this increase reflects that fact that for about half of FY 98-99, the MAPS office was in Charlotte, NC, where the monthly rent was $200 a month, while for the other half of FY 98-99, the MAPS office was in Sarasota, where the monthly rent was $500. As a result, overall rent for FY 98-99 was lower than rent for FY 99-00. Rent for FY 00-01 has remained the same in Sarasota, at $500 a month.
Office equipment expenditures in FY 99-00 were $2,817, compared to $685 in FY 98-99. This increase reflects the cost of setting up a new office in a new location.
MAPS spent $3,948 for computer equipment in FY 99-00, as compared to $74.94 in FY 98-99. MAPS substantially upgraded its computer equipment in FY 99-00.
Fees, Bank and Regulatory
Fees in FY 99-00 were $1,335 in FY 99-00, as compared to $591 in FY 98-99. This increase is due to new registration fees with the State of Florida.
MAPS had a successful and active year in FY 99-00, with a mix of educational and research projects. In terms of clinical research, much of what took place in FY 99-00 was laying the groundwork for research projects still to be approved.
Now that I have completed my dissertation, I feel a bit more wind in my sails. Simultaneously, the social breezes are shifting directions somewhat. With skill and patience, it's possible to create increasingly greater opportunities to advance MAPS' agenda. As the teamwork between MAPS' staff and our membership continues to develop and expand, MAPS becomes more effective. I'm reminded yet again of Theodore Hertzl's inspiring words, "If you will it, it is no dream."