Noon, Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Visitors Bureau Administrative Offices

Present: M Boyette, T Godwin, K Brinson, P Boucher, J Godfrey, K Henthorn, M Patel, B Dixon, C McLamb, H Stump, T Stewart

Guest: Andrew Holland

Absent:

Staff: D Bailey-Taylor, A Phillips

I.          Call to Order – Vice-Chairman T Godwin

T Godwin called the meeting to order at 12:20 pm and stated that a quorum was present.  T. Godwin welcomed Andrew Holland, Intern with the Town of Clayton. With no corrections, the agenda was adopted.

II.        Vice-Chairman T Godwin

T Godwin asked for a motion to accept the March minutes that were previously sent to the Board.

B Dixon motioned to accept the March minutes as presented.  P Boucher seconded.  Motion passed unanimously.

III.       Finances – Vice-Chairman T Godwin

February Financials

Month-to-Date Revenue for March was $67,363.65.  Month-to-Date Human Resources expenses were $20,810.38. Month-to-Date Operations were $40,719.41. Net Income for the month was $5,833.86.  Year-to-Date Revenues were $642,660.29. Year-to-Date Human Resources expenses were $174,111.69. Year-to-Date Operations were $379,865.97. Year-to-Date net income was $88,682.63. The February revenues were $45,670.10. Smithfield’s February Revenues were $11,687.01. Selma’s February Revenues were $7,954.93. Kenly’s February Revenues were $1,956.55.  Benson’s February Revenues were $566.20. T Godwin stated that the balance sheet was still in the black. Godwin stated that the cash flow would vary with extra expenses due to quarterly payments.  Godwin also requested that the bureau move any funds above $250,000 in the current money market with KS Bank to CD’s.  D Bailey-Taylor indicated that Tyson with the county finance office was researching best rates for this transfer.

Budget Discussion

T Godwin stated that the Executive Committee had met about the budget for 2012-13 with the following recommendations.

  • The Executive Committee discussed whether to open up the Capital Grants Program in 2012-13 or to continue to save money for the future building purchase. It was determined that it is important to maintain a safety net of three month expenses, as well as, continuing to set aside money toward a building fund. The bureau is presently in a three-year lease agreement with a renewal of three years. Based upon past revenues, the committee has brought forth the recommendation to open up the Capital Grants Program in the amount of $25,000 for one year. The Capital Grants guidelines would need to be reviewed before sending it out. J Godfrey wanted to commemorate the Executive Committee on this action. B Dixon stated the importance of maintaining reserves for the flexibility to pursue a land purchase provided the county will allow the Bureau to borrow money in the next 3-5 years.
  • The Executive Committee discussed the Visitor Bureau’s lack of visibility in all communities within the county and the need to move in a new direction to be more involved with all communities. The Executive Committee discussed canceling the contract with the Smithfield Selma Chamber of Commerce and shifting the monthly contract fee of $1,050 to enable the bureau to join all seven chambers as a “Champion” or “Gold” member and receive the benefits of these programs. This change would allow the bureau to maintain the current budget level. T Godwin stated that we now have Mr. Ellis in place to restock the gazebo and keep our local visitor information in the Lee House stocked. The change would allow the bureau to have a different relationship with all the chambers and not just Smithfield/Selma.
  • Godwin noted there was a meeting last week with himself, D Bailey-Taylor, K Brinson, Jason Narron, Chairman of SS Chamber, and Rick Childrey, Director of SS Chamber to discuss the possible cancellation of the contract between the Visitors Bureau and the SS Chamber. It was noted that the there needed to be a 60-day written notice to cancel or the agreement automatically renews each May.  The agreement will stand for FY 12-13 based on this timing clause.
  • M Boyette stated that she would not want to lose the visitor room and gazebo at the Lee House. M Boyette felt the gazebo should be more of an interactive place where upcoming events could be promoted prior to the events by area chambers, like antique cars and mules there prior to events. This would bring some life to the gazebo and promote other communities of the county.
  • More discussion was had about the operational hours of the Lee House and services available. It was noted that the visitor center is not currently open on the weekend when the CPO sees a high increase in traffic. Discussion was also had about the possible use of kiosks within the CPO shopping area.

B Dixon motioned to accept the recommendation to open the Capital Grants in the amount of $25,000 for 2012-13 with an annual review based on revenues.  J Godfrey seconded.  Motion passed unanimously.

M Boyette motioned to continue the contract with the SS Chamber and write out what the bureau would like to see take place to make it more of a county visitor center.  H Stump seconded.  Motion was defeated 4 to 6.

P Boucher motioned to take out the automatic renewal clause in the contract with the SS Chamber.  B Dixon seconded with a friendly amendment that the chamber be notified in writing and that the bureau began to explore options.  Motion passed 8 to 2.

IV. Special Projects Committee – T Stewart

D Bailey-Taylor presented a request from the Clayton Rotary Club for a Special Event Grant for the upcoming Clayton Derby Day to be held on May 5, 2012.

T Stewart motioned to accept the request.  P Boucher seconded.  Motion passed unanimously.

V. Marketing Committee – P Boucher

Highlights from the March Marketing meeting:

  • Smithfield/Selma Visitor maps were going to print
  • Smithfield billboard is in the process of being flipped with hotel logo changes
  • Civil War advertising periodical is going digital
  • Bureau will be participating in new Visitnc.com and NC Division of Tourism coop programs
  • Upcoming events: Primal Mud Run, 3 Little Pigs Triathlon, Destination Marketing April 12th
  • Video project shot History & Heritage footage on March 17th
  • Lunar Cow content is about finished and E Dean is gathering photos
  • I-95 Toll Road meeting will be April 17th at the Sleep Inn & Suites in Smithfield

VI.       Staff Report – D Bailey-Taylor

  • Todd Hensley will be volunteering with JCVB to shoot film locations in the county
  • D Bailey-Taylor attended the Clayton Chamber Board Meeting and entertained many good questions about the bureau’s program of work and she has plans to continue to visit all other chambers.
  • Intern for the summer will be starting in May, Persida Montanez is a Communications Student at ECU. She will be working on web content and writing media stories.
  • JOCO Chamber Association will meet at the bureau in June, JCVB will host the group for breakfast
  • Bureau will review the video footage next week and shoot additional video on April 26th (outdoor & recreation) D Bailey-Taylor will be looking for models and/or families for people to be in the video.
  • Primal Mud Race has 1,500 people registered so far. They are looking for nonprofits and vendors.
  • The JCVB Sports council will meet April 16th.

Summary of Visitor Inquiries and Distribution – February

Visitor inquiries: pieces of literature mailed: 3,846

Year to Date visitor inquiries:  32,370

Inquiry History by Brochure:                 Visitor Guide 3,056

CPO Brochure        782

Visitor History by State: NC (420), NY (145), SC (144), VA (167), PA (170), OH (110), FL (205), GA (141), TX (95), TN (101)

Visitor Inquiry for Advertising Source:  Compass Magazine – 1,277

Civil War Traveler – 152

AAA Go Magazine – 195

Southern Living CPO – 782

Southern Living Smithfield - 613

February & March Bulk Distribution:

JCVB Visitors Guide – 5356

JCVB Agri-tourism Trail brochures – 1495

JCVB Golf – 820

JCVB Emory Boards – 25

JCVB Mugs - 4

JCVB Klip – 35

JCVB Postcards – 240

JCVB Stadium Cups – 25

AMJ Brochure – 140

Ava BOGO Postcard – 1720

Ava Museum Brochure – 240

Ava Gardner Fans – 650

Bentonville Battlefield – 35

Carolina Civil War Trail – 575

CPO Brochures – 335

CPO Vouchers – 635

Hinnant Winery - 125

Wine Trail Brochures - 265

SS Visitors Maps 3735

Selma Classic Car Postcard – 600

Tobacco Farm Life Museum - 150

 

New and Inactive IP Records in D3000

New Record /Opened: Anna’s Gourmet Banana Nut Bread, Guadalajara Bakery, New to You Thrift Store, Ninja Japan Express, Peddlers Thrift Mall, The Boathouse Seafood & Grill

Closed: Jan’s Strawberries, Barham Farms, Jennifer’s Hallmark, Cheap Thrills Thrift Shop

Google Analytics – report for March

www.johnstoncountync.org – 3,322 unique visitors, 8,579 page views

www.visitsmithfield.org – 2,878 unique visitors, 12,726 page views

www.visitkenly.org – 1,014 unique visitors, 4,096 page views

www.hamandyam.com – 733 unique visitors, 2,815 page views

www.americasmainstreetnc.com – 152 unique visitors, 190 page views

www.visitbenson.org – 374 unique visitors, 1,118 page views

www.visitfouroaks.org – 254 unique visitors, 1,034 page views

www.visitclayton.org - 431 unique visitors, 1,755 page views

www.visitselma.org – 575 unique visitors, 2,701 page views

www.muscadineheritagewinetrail.com – 172 unique visits, 505 page views

VII. Around The County Reports

Four Oaks – Planning is going well for the Four Oaks Acorn Festival, May 18-19

Clayton – April 14th Farmers Market opening, Library sale, downtown yardsale, Clayton Center event, April 28th Heart Chase

Benson – Sundown Outdoor concerts start April 19th, Benson Clean up day April 28th.

Smithfield – Ham & Yam May 5, Shriners’ Convention coming back to Smithfield in 2014

Kenly- Krusin’ Kenly event is scheduled for April 21st.

VIII. Old Business

J Godfrey thanked the board for the opportunity to attend the NC Governors Conference.

VIV. New Business

None.

Meeting adjourned at 1:34 pm.

Next Meeting
Johnston
County Tourism Authority
Noon, May 2, 2012
Visitors Bureau Administrative Offices