Board of Directors Meeting
October 11, 2016

Attendees: Karen McCloud, Joe Bauer, Dan Farnham, Carol Tremble, Dave Lane, Bob Livingstone, Walter Blasberg, Paul Bruhn, Bob Camp
Absent: none
Staff: Jan Marinelli

Walter B. convened the meeting at 6:09 p.m.

  1. Minutes of the August 9, 2016 meeting were approved.
    Moved – Bob L., Second – Dan F, Vote approved 9-0
  2. Financial Reports
    Review 2016 Budget:
    Walter reported that the corporation is $1,100 behind its projected 2016 budget. This is close to a perfectly balanced budget.  There is really nothing in the budget that needs to be noted. Carol T. pointed out that the change column was removed and is really useful to have. Jan will put the column back into the report and remove the redundant budget column instead. Paul B. questioned how we track surplus funds? Finance members Carol T. and Joe B. replied that they are counted as net assets.
  3. Proposed 2017 Budget
    Joe B. questioned whether our real estate mortgagor (Merchant’s Bank) requires a 2% contingency fund set aside.  Jan agreed to research and report back.

    Water issue in basement: Jan discussed getting drainage issues resolved in new year. Will need resources to do so, and thus would like to add to contingency fund.  Bob C. has talked with Irick Excavating in the past about this issue. Jan and Bob C. will discuss and follow up with Irick to get proposal and cost estimate.

    Blank line item on the budget is Jan’s salary line.  Board to address in executive session.*

    Partner support: We receive Partner support of a $ 1,200 donation from VT Energy Investment Corp as do all other RDCs.

    SBDC: There was a possibility of a decrease in our grant but Jan discussed with SBDC director and we will be level funded at: $2,000.00 in FY 2017

    Reporting grant support in budget: Paul B. expressed concern re: grants that are passed through to businesses or other entities.  Questioned whether these pass throughs skew budget numbers. Jan reported that with line item 4040 (grant support), LCIEDC lists each grant and its source on income side and tracks as an expense when paid out to third party in budget. FYI: State of VT budget year is July 1 to June 30th.

    Expenses: Jan reported that this year for the first time there were expenses involved in payroll set-up for Jan and ongoing processing payroll fees.  Also included was a small allocation for advertising and promotion. Capital expense budget items include interior painting, new sign, and new Apple computer for Jan.

    Motion to approve 2017 Budget* – Carol T., Second – Joe B. Vote approved 9-0

    * Executive Director salary will be addressed in executive session and added in later.

  4. Other Business
    Annual Dinner Event:
     income = ticket sales.  2016 event sold out.
    Joe B. asked about speakers for 2017: How about Senator Bernie Sanders? He would be a huge draw. Jan agreed to follow-up with his office. Jan mentioned Chris Graff: a writer and executive at National Life, formerly Associated Press leader in VT. Sponsorships: Jan reported that we hope to build upon the many businesses that came out in support of our annual dinner this past year.

    Business Expo: LCIEDC will partner with businesses throughout the Islands on Business Expo again this winter.  Expo is scheduled for February 18th in the North Hero Community Hall during the Great Ice celebration. Sherri is getting the word out to Island businesses regarding the event. North Country Federal Credit Union sponsored last year and has been a great partner with us.

    Municipalities: Jan provided the Town of Grand Isle with a simplified PowerPoint regarding LCIEDC, how it is structured, and what work we do. She received positive feedback regarding this from the Selectboard and is hopeful for an appropriation of funds from GI town. If successful, that would mean each of the Islands’ 5 towns supports our work = 100% participation.

    Annual Report: Sherri and Jan are working on a 2016 annual report (fiscal year is Oct. 1, 2015, – Sept. 30, 2016) to highlight our work and successes throughout the region. Bob C. likes to see stories and press releases regarding economic development throughout the county.  He suggested more stories for the Islander newspaper. Possibly write a story about the VT Nut Free Chocolates grant LCIEDC received for the company for partial cost of machinery.

    Tudhope House: Still looking for a new tenant for the apartment. Sherri and Jan will continue to advertise locally.  Apartment in great shape so hopefully no new expenses.

    United Way of Northwest Vermont: launching its 2017 campaign. LCIEDC encourages 100% participation in the campaign.  LCIEDC is making its office available to the UWNV for meetings. We hope to see more activity in the Islands with the merger.

  5. Board Changes: Board V.P. Bob Livingstone tendered his resignation due to other commitments and his travel schedule. The Board thanked Bob for his years of service to LCIEDC. A celebration of Bob ensued and a gift was bestowed upon him.

    Board Nominations: Kim Kinney, Nate Hayward, & Josephine Churchill nominated.
    Carol T. asked which towns do not have representation on the Board currently. Jan reported that Isle La Motte and Alburgh currently do not. She has reached out to businesses in those towns but hasn’t received any formal interest yet. She will continue those efforts. Bob L. reported that Kim K. was asked to contact Jan M. if interested. He has not contacted her to-date.  Nate Hayward is a local economic developer responsible for the new commercial buildings in South Hero.
    Joe B. moved Nate H. for Board Membership.  Second – Bob C. Vote approved 9-0.

    New Vice President: Carol T. nominated Bob C., Second – Joe B. Vote approved 9-0.

  6. Executive Session: The Board entered Executive Session at 7:29 p.m. to discuss personnel matters and exited at 7:53 p.m.

The meeting was adjourned at 7:58 p.m.