January 2016 General Meeting Minutes

Pymatuning Area Chamber of Commerce
Monthly Chamber Meeting Agenda    
January 13, 2015  -  8:00 a.m

Call to order

Welcome and Introductions

Roll Call of Board Members: Lara Reibold (For the Health of It- 2016) President __x___, Susan Hill (Andover Public Library- 2016) Vice President __x___, Dan Creed (Mega-Byte - 2016) Treasurer ___x____,Venie Hinson-Secretary (2016) __x____, Pastor Jerry Fritz (First UCC Congregational – 2016) ___x__ , Andrew Brown (A. Brown Rehab – 2017) ______, Steve Hinson (Fibers and Art - 2017) __x_____, Nancy Logan (Rainbow Growers - 2017) ______, Mike Candela (PV Schools - 2017) _____, Ron York (Yorkie’s - 2017)__x__ , Barbara Klingensmith (Country Neighbor - 2018) ______, Eric Senor (Andover Bank - 2018) ________, Raymond French (Andover Village Council - 2018) ___x____

Members present: Dale Reibold, Cindy Boettcher, Tracey Spitler (Sam’s Club)

Minutes of December 9, 2015 meeting read. Motion to accept by Steve Hinson, 2nd by Sue Hill. Passed.

Treasurer’s Report: Tabled until February meeting.

Old Business:

Website/Social Media  Jonathan Browning asked everybody to share info on the County Expo/Homeshow – mailed yesterday thru email. All applications available on email as well as flyer. It is March 5/6. Will be asking for volunteers to set up/clean up. Our Chamber does earn money from this event every year, goes into general fund. This is a fun activity – try to come. Jonathan Browning also put all events for the year on facebook yesterday. As we get closer to events, will add more info. Jonathan is now in Colorado.

Membership: Currently have 93 members, should be above 100 at this point. Have total of 10 new members, 3 members added back. Membership book is kept at the library in Susan’s office, with printout of all members in it. Still have 13 members from previous year not yet paid. Will check on new bakery and Dairy Oasis coming in town as new businesses.

Budget: Did meet, go over everything, set budget for 2016. Should be positive income this year for the first year in a while. Will have $1200 coming in from published Membership Directory.   Dan Creed can send out email with report if helpful.   The 2016 Budget will be tabled until next month so it can be discussed then. Ron York asked if we had thought about sending letters to all members about building, asking if they would like to make a one-time donation toward the expenses on the new building. Lara will do that. Jerry asked if Ron would be willing to send letter out to everybody on chamber list as a member of chamber, rather than Chamber itself sending the letter? Ron indicated he would be willing to do so. Lara can prepare it, send it to Ron and it would then come from individual member rather than Chamber itself.

Cranberry Station update: Purchase complete, will receive keys on Saturday. Dale and Lara spent 6 hours cleaning there Sunday. Trying to get it cleaned up before trees come in. Couple things to be discussed. With closing and purchase, had about $4K left from CDs. Mike Creed estimated if nothing donated will cost us between $1500-$2K to do renovations required inside. In process of getting new signs custom made - will be in 3 pieces, size needed is 101”x66”x24” tall. Standard sizes are different. Getting bids. Would like to keep monies remaining to use for renovations and sign. Lara is talking to Hot Spot to buy freezer and cooler in back, would go towards expenses. Asking $1K each – will see if it happens. Susan said the Chamber should have an elegant presence on the square like Cranberry Station did, to have that front will be good investment. Sign does light up. Would like to replace with sign saying maybe “Pymatuning Area “ top line, “Chamber of Commerce” 2nd line. The question was asked if that leaves room anywhere for Gazette or others to put up signs? Lara responded they can put lettering in windows that they are in. Mike had suggested splitting sign, but if we split sign and they leave we have to re-do sign again. Gazette plans on renting one office in front half. On the other side, can rent it out or can make Chamber office with desk, stuff out of library, etc. Do we need an office there? Lara has had 1 inquiry from Potpourri Gift Shop about renting the space. Cindy Davis is deciding if she wants a place here, as well as one she is going to open in Florida . What is advantage of having office for PACOC vs. renting? Don’t know how much space available to have meetings there. Could have smaller committee meetings, but not membership meetings. Won’t know until we have trees, etc. in there. If we can rent out would give us more money. With 2 renters have all but $18 of mortgage paid monthly, plus upstairs renter. Steve: People can walk in and open outside doors, have pamphlets there to be picked up. Don’t see us having people there 8 hours a day in an office – that is not going to happen. Having brochures available is a positive thing. Susan Hill made the motion to keep additional funds from CD in general fund as “land on our feet money” to be put towards spectacular sign and renovations, doors, electrical work. Jerry Fritz seconded motion. Motion Passed. Jerry Fritz moved we seek renter for that part of the building not already rented. If not rented could be used as office space for chamber. Susan Hill seconded the motion. Passed.

Home Show: Nothing to update on Home Show

Membership Directory 2016 to be approved to move forward with Bill Creed. Example passed around for viewing. Bill will meet with Lara on Jan 22 to discuss contents.

Christmas Trees: Lara has gotten feedback about the half lit trees on the square this year as being unsightly. She suggested we put bows rather than lights so they won’t go out. Need trees to be replaced. Designed originally that trees were to be replaced on an ongoing basis, but that plan is not working. If we are going to continue to light trees, need to buy lights. If bows, need to purchase bows. Steve and Buddy go out and replace lights when possible, it’s a miserable job. Have not billed businesses for Christmas trees this year yet. Not sure if we want to bill for lights / trees / or what. Looks pretty bad driving around square. Steve suggested we table discussion, put together committee of 3-4 to work on this problem. Some of trees are rusted, repaired, not able to use some trees. Need to see how many are in good shape, can we decorate without lights in some manner. Buddy said we have to string extension cords around top of the poles on the square, takes 2 people about 8 hours to do this often in inclement weather. The question was raised: is this a chamber function? To do this? What does this benefit the businesses? Most assume this is the village or township that takes care of this, but it is not. Both township and village help put items onto square, but lighting, prepping, purchasing replacement trees, etc. is not done by them. Monies for this comes from Chamber. How does this help businesses? Steve said there is a very indirect benefit – people coming through the area, seeing nicely lit square, etc., think “ I will come, bring my business here, eat here”, etc. But that is good question. What is it that we as chamber are doing? Time, cost, all factors? From purist standpoint, Chamber’s responsibility is to support businesses in area things like how to advertise, how to run businesses. Chamber is voice of businesses. Jerry said that generally in his experience, seems Christmas trees, flags, are part of the town’s responsibility other than Chamber.   Need committee to discuss pros and cons. Steve suggested maybe we should send out a letter to all members saying “Chamber has been doing this for number of years, using monies, etc. There will be a special chamber meeting if you have input you would like to make on supporting how beautiful the square should look. Otherwise Chamber is taking a look at whether we should do this or not.” Lara said looking back historically, had Christmas committee in 90’s who did that before Chamber took over. Originally an ad hoc committee not chartered, did it. Lost people due to death, moved away, and Chamber then got involved. Everybody loves to see the Square decorated, looks inviting, etc. If we are talking about trees only around the perimeter, we can do that.

Expo- April 20. Kathy Alexander is not going to chair, need chairperson ASAP because this needs to be done right away. Wednesday, April 20 date set with school.

Focus on Business: Talked to Mike DeWine’s office. Beth Short will be here representing his office on February 25, 5-7 pm, at Country Meadows Club House. She will discuss their charity guide for businesses, how to identify scams. Tells how to detect nonprofit scams, fund raising scams, etc.

Lake Festival: still looking for Crafter Chair. Susan recommended Renee Petronio for chair. In meantime, all applications have gone out and process has begun. One band needed yet, but all others set. Mike to get back to Lara with date for trailer.

Moving Chamber Items: Need many hands to move everything from storage to Cranberry Station. 50% is stuff on square right now that village guys will do. Kraftmade donated 17 plastic pallets to us for raising stuff off ground.

Remodeling: Members will be doing remodeling. Mike and Lara discussing how to remodel with members, do need permit for sign changeover, etc. Yorkie has about 30 metal shelf brackets he can donate. Lara will send letter to Valley, JR Lumber, once we know what is needed. Need solid doors for two office spaces, double door for space going into chamber part. Outside doors will not be changed.

Talked about 2 aspects for entrance, master key or doing a code lock that we can assign codes to different people. Little more cost upfront for code, but can track who is in and out of building. Right now Lara and Buddy have keys for the lock there. Same key that was Cherri’s – do not have back door keys yet, all of cooks did have keys so those keys are still out there. Need to make change when we get our stuff in there. Can solve back door by putting deadbolt or something to be opened on inside. Space is empty right now except for pallets. Dan recommended we go code based, not key based. Can easily manage code based rather than all the keys. Can keep track of who was last in. Jerry Fritz moved that we have a code lock. Buddy French seconded. Passed.

Motion to adjourn made by Steve Hinson, 2nd by Sue Hill.

Respectfully submitted,

Venie Hinson, Secretary


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