12 Noon, August 5, 2015
Visitors Bureau Administrative Offices


Present:          E Brame, J Godfrey, L Daniels, W Stancil, K Henthorn, S Lee , K Brinson, R Andrews, M Zapp,  T Radford 
Absent:           S Henley
Guest:            Lynda Carroll, WTSB Radio
Staff:              D Bailey-Taylor, A Phillips

I.          Call to Order – E Brame, Chairman

E Brame called the meeting to order at 12:11 pm and stated that a quorum was present. With no corrections, the agenda was adopted.  Brame asked for a motion to accept the June minutes that were previously sent to the board.

S Lee motioned to accept the June minutes as presented.  W Stancil seconded.  Motion passed unanimously.

II.        Finances - May Financials - D Bailey-Taylor

Month-to-Date Revenue for June was $120,459.86. Month-to-Date Operations were $138,478.10. Net Income for the month was -$18,018.24. Year-to-Date Revenues were $1,065,127.76. Year-to-Date Operations were $951,730.54. Year-to-Date net income was $113,397.22. The May county revenues were $66,929.47. Smithfield’s May Revenues were $19,819.40. Selma’s May Revenues were $9,155.49. Kenly’s May Revenues were $2,359.42.  Benson’s May Revenues were $1.003.90. 

Month-to-Date Revenue for July was $79,817.01. Month-to-Date Operations were $60,097.27. Net Income for the month was $19,719.74. Year-to-Date Revenues were $79,817.01. Year-to-Date Operations were $60,097.27. Year-to-Date net income was $19,719.74. The June county revenues were $65,961.16. Smithfield’s June Revenues were $17,912.34. Selma’s June Revenues were $8,488.34. Kenly’s June Revenues were $2,577.12.  Benson’s June Revenues were $976.74. DB Taylor stated that the Town of Smithfield revenues were not deposited on time for the report. 

 III.       Special Projects - W Stancil

Special Projects met prior to the board meeting to discuss the applications received for Capital Grants.  The committee received eight applications for total requests of $82,257 and the 2015-16 budget for capital grants is $70,000. The committee recommended that the board fund the tourism attractions such as Bentonville Battlefield State Historic Site, Ava Gardner Museum, and Tobacco Farm Life Museum at 100% of their grant application.  The other remaining grants from the Archer Lodge Community Center, Clayton Parks & Recreation, Clayton Cultural Arts Foundation, Benson Parks & Recreation, and Smithfield Parks & Recreation are recommended for funding at 80% of their grant application.   

L Daniels motioned to accept the recommendation from the Special Projects Committee to award the capital grants as presented.  R Andrews seconded.  Motion passed unanimously.

The Special Projects Committee also reviewed applications for Special Events Grants. Three applications were for Benson Mule Days, Clayton Harvest Festival and Cleveland Strawberry Festival that automatically qualify for $1000 each.

The committee reviewed and recommended that the board approve special event grants for Clayton Piano Festival, Four Oaks Acorn Festival, NLT "Something Afoot" and Wilson's Mills Pumpkin Festival in the amount of $500 each. Each request was within the guidelines and eligible for $500.

M Zapp motioned to approve the requests as presented.  R Andrews seconded.  Motion passed unanimously.

IV.       Marketing Committee

In the absence of S Henley, DB Taylor reviewed the Marketing Committee minutes. The Marketing Committee will now meet every other month on the 3rd Tuesday of that month in opposite months from the Sports Council. The next meeting will be held on August 18th, Lynda Carroll will provide a presentation from WTSB Radio concerning advertising opportunities. The Beer, Wine, Shine Trail brochures are currently being designed.  The new Google landing pages are completed with new digital strategies to encourage downstream activities on our website, which can be monitored and adjusted as need through Google Analytics.  For the most recent JoCo Hospitality Association meeting held last week, the staff completed the 2016 Strategic Marketing Plan and created a Drop Box folder which also contains marketing materials, logos, photos and graphics, as well as, marketing research for our members to read and use to continue marketing efforts for the county.  The next Hospitality Association meeting is scheduled for Oct 27 at 2pm, and the group will participate in the speed networking activity.

V.        Sports Council Committee

J Godfrey stated that the committee met on July 15th with discussion about how to move forward with the Master Plan and asking the county commissioners to establish a staff of two as a coordinating body. D Bailey-Taylor presented a resolution of support for all members of the Master Plan Task Force to adopt and return to the Visitors Bureau.  More support is needed from all local organizations and the general public to see a Recreation Director position with the county.  Next step for the JoCo Bike Routes is signage to help direct bikers navigate around the county. The next meeting will be Sept 16th at 12N.

VI.       Staff Report

In the interest of time DB Taylor shared some of the highlights for the past two months including the 301 Endless Yard Sale, visits from the Directors of the I-95 North and South Welcome Centers, Horseless Carriage Tour which many people enjoyed around the county, and several sports tournaments  which have been in the county bringing revenues to hotels, shopping and local restaurants. JCVB has defended the decision to keep the 301 Endless Yard Sale in June and certainly hopes for better weather. The organizing committee has researched the weather temperatures and knows the last two years have been abnormally hot, in addition, moving the event to the fall would have an impact along US 301 for school buses, and local school athletic events.  D Bailey-Taylor has suggested and encouraged that the committee include misting stations, give out free water, and have fans in areas to give visitors some relief from the heat.  M Zapp wanted the board to know what a huge economic impact this event has had on some local businesses along 301 and on Main Street businesses in Benson, some seeing double digit increases in normal sales.  D Bailey-Taylor mentioned that the NC Main Street Managers will be in Smithfield in August and Logging Expo will again return to the Smithfield/Selma area in September.

VII.     Old Business

E Brame called for a brief Executive Session to discuss acquisition of property.  

Meeting adjourned at 1:17 PM.

Next Meeting
County Tourism Authority
Noon, September 2, 2015
Benson Town Hall