JOHNSTON COUNTY TOURISM AUTHORITY
BOARD MEETING MINUTES
Noon, Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Visitors Bureau Administrative Offices
Present: M Boyette, T Godwin, P Boucher, B Dixon, D Mills, C McLamb, H Stump,
J Godfrey, K Henthorn
Absent: M Patel, T Stewart
Staff: D Bailey-Taylor, A Phillips
I. Call to Order – Vice-Chairman T Godwin
T Godwin called the meeting to order at 12:17 pm and stated that a quorum was present. With no corrections, the agenda was adopted.
II. Vice-Chairman T Godwin
T Godwin asked for a motion or corrections to the September minutes that were previously sent to the Board.
B Dixon motioned to accept the September minutes as presented. P Boucher seconded. Motion passed unanimously.
III. Finances – Vice-Chairman T Godwin
Month-to-Date Revenue for September was $87,089.92. Month-to-Date Human Resources expenses were $17,205.62. Month-to-Date Operations were $38,854.99. Net Income for the month was $31,029.31. Year-to-Date Revenues were $249,194.88. Year-to-Date Human Resources expenses were $55,276.87. Year-to-Date Operations were $110,584.05. Year-to-Date net income was $83,333.96. The August revenues were $59,177.87. Smithfield’s August Revenues were $13,485.18. Selma’s August Revenues were $8,757.93. Kenly’s August Revenues were $2,973.74. Benson’s August Revenues were $1,237.13. Godwin stated that the revenues were good with overall August revenues up 24%.
IV. Special Projects Committee
D Bailey-Taylor stated that next on the agenda for the Special Projects Committee would be to look at the application and guidelines for Special Events Grants.
V. Marketing Committee – M Boyette
M Boyette stated that D Bailey-Taylor and J Godfrey attended the County Commissioners meeting on October 3rd to inquire if the commissioners would appoint someone to serve on the Sports Council. Tony Braswell was appointed to serve. Braswell is from the Pine Level area and worked on the county sports bond referendum. It was recommended that the at large members need to increase from two to five, bringing the total number on the committee to 13 members. C McLamb agreed this would give smaller communities in the county a chance to serve on the council.
J Godfrey motioned to accept the Sports Council By-Laws. M Boyette seconded. Motion passed unanimously.
D Bailey-Taylor that some content had been loaded on Trip Advisor and that more would be added. Taylor plans to have content about all attractions in the county as well as other interesting information about the towns. The bureau is in the process of stuffing 2,000 bags with coupons and area information for the NC Logging Expo. The bureau will also provide 60 gift bags for VIPs of the event. Most hotels are full in the Smithfield and Selma area for this weekend. D Bailey-Taylor stated that she met with John Mark Ivey about the 90 day contract for social media. Based upon the 90 day trial, some revisions were necessary. Taylor stated that she had made several attempts to reach John Ellis in Clayton about doing distribution in the county. The bureau is still seeking someone to fulfill this part time position. D Bailey-Taylor attended the DMANC conference in Concord where the JCVB won three Destination Marketing Awards: Sports Brochure - Niche Marketing, Smithfield Ham & Yam Festival Marketing Campaign and the Benson Museum of Local History project – Destination Initiative.
VI. Staff Report – D Bailey-Taylor
D Bailey-Taylor stated the focus for the next two weeks will be to launch the new Johnston County CVB website which will be a portal to the new six town sites. D Bailey-Taylor presented a copy of the town occupancy tax report showing a breakdown of the 3% revenue which is a new report from the Finance Office. There was recently an article from The Herald about Tourism Spending being up for Johnston County in 2010 by 6.24% which was a positive sign for the county. Also presented was information on a possible DOT clean up campaign for I-95 and I-40. D Bailey-Taylor has contacted the companies that will clean up the interstates with corporate sponsors similar to the Adopt a Highway program. D Bailey-Taylor will bring forward any information at the next meeting on cost and how to involve tourism partners in the county to help keep our highways clean. D Bailey-Taylor stated staff has been very busy preparing for this weekend’s activities: Ava Gardner Festival, NC Logging Expo, Clues on the Neuse and Ava Gardner Film Festival – all should produce great spending in the county for October.
Summary of Visitor Inquiries and Distribution – September
Visitor inquiries: pieces of literature mailed: 701
Year to Date visitor inquiries: 16,509
Inquiry History by Brochure: Visitor Guide 354
Ava Gardner Festival 331
Visitor History by State: NY (223), SC (80), NJ (5), MI (5), GA (5), PA (4), WI (4), MS (3), TN & VA (2)
Visitor Inquiry for Advertising Source: AAA Go Magazine – 263
June Bulk Distribution:
JCVB Visitors Guide – 1195
JCVB Agri-tourism Trail brochures – 100
JCVB Click pens – 190
JCVB Key chains – 190
JCVB Jar Openers – 50
JCVB Postcards – 60
Ava Gardner Festival Brochures – 5,000
Ava Festival Poster - 25
CPO Brochures – 200
SS Visitors Maps 190
New and Inactive IP Records in D3000
New Record /Opened: J. Crew
Lion & the Lamb Bookstore
Smithfield Crossings Family Healthcare
The Bread Box Company
Urgent Care of Smithfield
Google Analytics – report for September
www.johnstoncountync.org – 5,265 unique visitors, 14,937 page views
www.visitsmithfield.org – 2,798 unique visitors, 7,336 page views
www.visitkenly.org – 378 unique visitors, 1,172 page views
www.hamandyam.com – 257 unique visitors, 532 page views
www.americasmainstreetnc.com – 159 unique visitors, 274 page views
www.visitbenson.org – 192 unique visitors, 483 page views
www.visitfouroaks.org – 90 unique visitors, 437 page views
www.visitclayton.org - 153 unique visitors, 260 page views
www.visitselma.org – 294 unique visitors, 1,756 page views
www.muscadineheritagewinetrail.com – 301 unique visits, 1,008 page views
VII. Around The County Reports
Benson – Mule Days was good, weather was an issue; Harvest and Health Fair and 5K Run, Oct. 29
Selma – Railroad Days successful, NC Logging Expo Oct. 7-8
Smithfield – Business Expo Oct 12, Economic Development Luncheon - 134 attended, Ava Festival Oct 7-9
Four Oaks – Oaktober fest
Kenly – New Dollar General coming, Chamber will host Candidate Forum Oct. 20th, Christmas Parade Dec. 1st
Clayton – Squealing on the Square Oct. 14-15, Clayton Center busy, Harvest Festival went well, Business After Hours on Oct. 11th
VIII. Old Business
T Godwin opened discussion about office space for the bureau. Godwin stated that the bureau needed more space and needed to grow. There are two spaces that the bureau has looked into, CPO and downtown Smithfield. D Bailey-Taylor stated that CPO had shown an office space that was 2,400 sq ft with an up fit cost of $98,000. Taylor also has looked at an office space in downtown Smithfield that is owned by John Lampe. This space is 3,000 sq ft plus a conference room that will seat 50-75 people. There would be storage space, 3 regular offices, 4 cubicles, work room, kitchenette, no up fit and furnished. The cost would be $2,500 plus utilities. Godwin suggested that the Executive Committee be given information on the space and allowed to explore the possibilities. J Godfrey asked about signage. Taylor stated that there was an awning and large glass front that would allow for signage.
J Godfrey motioned that the Executive Committee meet and review the downtown office and come back to the board with a recommendation. H Stump seconded. Motion passed unanimously.
VIV. New Business
D Bailey-Taylor stated that the Johnston County Commissioners had reappointed four board members for another 3 year term. They are as follows: Mary Boyette, Jim Godfrey, Karen Henthorn, and Robert Dixon. J. Godfrey stated that he had received emails from two county commissioners questioning the board’s attendance policy. Godfrey stated that he referred the question to D Bailey-Taylor. Taylor stated that she had not received any calls or emails about the attendance policy. C McLamb and D Mills both stated that attendance for all boards had been discussed at past commissioners meetings. T Godwin stated that he would remind board members that had missed meetings about the need to attend and that board members are not allowed to miss more than three meetings per fiscal year.
Meeting adjourned at 1:15 pm.
Johnston County Tourism Authority
Noon, November 2, 2011
Visitors Bureau Administrative Offices
Bob Dixon, Secretary/Treasurer