MONTANA NURSERY & LANDSCAPE ASSOCIATION

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Synopses of Board Meetings

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  • 28 Dec 2016 9:57 PM | Jyl Story (Administrator)

    The October Conference Call meeting was called or order by President, James Prchal.  The financial report was approved.  The September minutes will be reviewed and approved at the November meeting.  Jennifer reported that 9 students took the CPP Plant ID exam at Cashman  Nursery on September 24.  All 9 students passed and 5 of the 9 successfully completed the course and achieved their CPP designation.  In Expo discussion Shane stated he is still looking to fill two speaker slots. We plan to add a Young Professionals reception on Tuesday evening following the Rain Bird Irrigation Workshop.  A review of MNLA History will be given at the Awards Banquet.  Sarah Kleinschmidt, Mike Cashman, and Jennifer Weiss will work on that committee.  It was decided to cut back on the number of topics at the Breakfast of Champions to no more than 10 topics.  New Business discussion centered around advertising in Grown In Montana.  The Board felt the cost was too great to advertise in that publication.  Board nominations for 3rd Vice President were considered.  We will lack representation from Great Falls after Sarah terms off the board.  Some thought was given to prospects to fill vacancies in Great Falls, Missoula and Billings.  James and Jennifer reported on the Northern Rockies Tree School.  This event will be held in Billings in 2017 and James is serving on the planning committee.  Website training with Kevin Johnson of Great River Design was also discussed.  There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.

     

  • 28 Dec 2016 9:56 PM | Jyl Story (Administrator)

    The Conference Call meeting was called to order at 8:00 am by President, James Prchal for the purpose of clarifying segments of the proposed nursery fee bill.  Director Ron De Yong, Cort Jensen, Donna Rise, Cam Lay, and Libbi Lovshin were in attendance from the Department of Agriculture.  MNLA Board:  James Prchal, Shane Clouse, Nathan Heinitz, Ryan Rubie, Jennifer Weiss, Jyl Story.

    The Department Attorney, Cort Jensen, opened the discussion by giving some past legislative history beginning in 2009 that included the farm to market and out of state nurseries in the fee schedule.  The inclusion of out of state nurseries was not popular and the next session that was reversed (2011).  Inspection service fees were added the next session (2013).  Inspection fees did not generate the income needed to successfully operate the program and has been unpopular with nurseries.  They took the next session off (2015) to regroup and build unity with MNLA and AMTOPP and craft legislation that could move the program forward in 2017. 

    The 2017 bill is crafted so everyone pays something and places everyone on a level playing field.  The fee structure for the box stores as proposed would require a license fee for each location of business dependent on the gross annual sales of each location.  Inspection fees have been eliminated from this bill.  The question was revisited about “what do we get for our money” ?  The question was addressed and answered satisfactorily.  The 2017 bill has gone to the Governor’s office for review and has been presented to the Economic Affairs Interim Committee.  The bill has been assigned # LC 382.  A legislative sponsor will be determined to carry the bill after the election.  Once the bill has been assigned to the House Ag Committee and a hearing date set, it will receive a House Bill number (HB).  Director de Yong expressed his appreciation for the meeting.  He stated it appears we have a consensus and everyone is comfortable with the legislation.  There being no further discussion, the meeting was adjourned at 9:00 am.

     

  • 28 Dec 2016 9:55 PM | Jyl Story (Administrator)

    The September meeting was called or order by President, James Prchal at the Red Lion Inn in Missoula.  The minutes and agenda were approved by consent agenda.  The MNLA website revisions have been completed to make it more mobile friendly and to update some pages.  Jennifer reported on the video shoot.  The first six went so well we decided we should do one about the CPP Program and shoot it during Expo when we would have a larger audience of CPP’s and Past Presidents present to contribute to the video.  Expo booths are sold out.  Shane is working on recruiting two more speakers.  He feels we are well diversified in speakers and topics to offer great education at Expo.  Mike Cashman gave an overview of articles needed for the Fall Leaflet.  Jyl would like all copy by October 1.  Letters to the newly elected legislators regarding the proposed nursery fee legislation were discussed.  Some concerns were raised regarding the fee structure.  A conference call with the Department of Ag will be set up next week for all board members to attend to have their questions and concerns addressed.  James reported he will be a presenter at the Northern Rockies Tree School next week.  This concluded the business of the Board.  The remainder of the meeting was led by Dr. Shawn Clouse as the Board continued work on the new Strategic Plan.  The meeting concluded at 11:00 am with lunch.  The Board then proceeded to Linda Vista Golf Course to begin the Fall Tour activities.

     

  • 28 Dec 2016 9:53 PM | Jyl Story (Administrator)

    The July Conference Call meeting was called or order by President, James Prchal.  The minutes and agenda were approved by consent agenda.  The nursery fee bill draft and pesticide bill draft are both in the process.  They will be reviewed by the Economic Affairs Committee in August and will be presented to the Governor’s Office on September 15.   Jyl reported on her trip to Cultivate 16 in Ohio. Membership renewals are strong. Plans are progressing for the Billings Golf Tournament and the Fall Tour in Missoula.  The Red Lion Inn will be the host hotel for the tour.  9 Hole Golf Tournament will be held at Linda Vista golf course. Jyl and Jennifer are finalizing the details for the Plant Something gardening tip videos to be shot in Bozeman on September 8.  Expo booths are almost sold out with only 8 remaining to be sold.  Still need to fill three speaker slots.  Andra Spurr will again assist with the Scholarship Silent Auction.  The Chapter Meetings are going well in Billings.

     

  • 01 May 2016 4:03 PM | Kevin Johnson (Administrator)

    The May Conference Call meeting was called or order by President, James Prchal. The minutes and agenda were approved by consent agenda. The Board reviewed additional proposed changes to the Nursery Fee License legislation. Changes recommended were: Establishing a fee range in statute that can be adjusted by administrative rule, Elimination of exemption for gross annual sales less than $1,000, Elimination of occasional sales fee, Eliminate florists and golf courses from the fee schedule, Eliminate the response fee, Maintain the flat fee for landscapers rather than based on gross annual sales, Eliminate the Small Plant Vendor language now in statute. If the statute is eliminated and, if needed in the future, it can still be created within the Department. Statute is not necessary. The Executive Committee will meet with the Department of Ag on June 2 to further discuss the changes. MNLA appreciates the Department bringing them to the table to discuss this important legislation. The first Billings Chapter meeting will be held May 25. Mike Cashman is working on articles for the Summer Leaflet. Jennifer reported MSU Professor, Bill Hoch, had conducted the Spring Written test for the CPP Exam. Nine students took the Exam with eight passing. Brigitte Simmons had previously taken the Plant ID Exam and now passed the written exam to become a CPP.

  • 01 Apr 2016 4:04 PM | Kevin Johnson (Administrator)

    The April Conference Call meeting was called or order by President, James Prchal. The minutes and agenda were approved by consent agenda. Five new MNLA members have joined Small Business Growth Alliance (SBGA) to utilize their credit card program and services. Work continues to update and refresh the MNLA website. Results of the Survey Monkey questionnaire were discussed. The comments were about 50% for a license increase and 50% against out of 18 replies. Those in favor understood that protecting agriculture from disease and pest issues comes with a cost and were in support. The Billings Golf Tournament is progressing as well as Chapter meeting plans. James Prchal moved that a line item of $1,000 be created for Chapter meeting expenses to be used for food and one drink per person attending. The meeting leader would initially cover the cost and submit a reimbursement request to MNLA to cover the cost of the meeting expense. We would continue to fund this line item by future golf tournament proceeds. Nathan Heinitz seconded the motion. MC.Executive Director Contract – Jennifer Weiss moved and Sarah Kleinschmidt seconded the motion to continue the current contract with Jyl Story as Executive Director. MC.

  • 01 Mar 2016 4:05 PM | Kevin Johnson (Administrator)

    The March Conference Call meeting was called or order by President, James Prchal. The minutes and agenda were approved by consent agenda. There was good discussion regarding the proposed nursery fee legislation for the 2017 legislative session. A category of sales was added in the fee structure from $5,001 to $25,000 in response to comments received. A Survey Monkey questionnaire will be created and emailed to the membership for comment. Shane Clouse is seeking Keynote Speaker ideas for the 2017 Expo. 51 booth spaces have been sold already for the trade show. The Missoula Fall Tour Committee met on March 9 to begin their planning. They are including a 9 hole golf tournament this year on Thursday afternoon with a nice dinner and kick off to the tour at Caras Nursery Thursday evening. The tour will be on Friday. Jennifer reported the CPP Manual has now been scanned onto a flash drive for ease of editing. Chapter meeting startup was discussed with ideas for an initial agenda. The Strategic Plan will be finalized at the September board meeting.

  • 01 Feb 2016 9:54 PM | Kevin Johnson (Administrator)

    The Spring Board meeting was held in Bozeman at the Holiday Inn and Gran Tree Inn on February 25. This will be the site of the 2017 Montana Green Expo. The board toured both facilities to view the Gran Tree where the Expo Trade Show will be held and the Holiday Inn where the seminars and meals will be held. Following the tour the meeting was called to order in the Board Room at the Holiday Inn. The minutes of the previous meeting and financials were reviewed and approved. The proposed budget for 2016 was approved. Jyl reported we have received four new members in February. Jyl also reported that Sylvan Nursery would like to donate to the scholarship fund in memory of one of their employees who recently passed away. Donna Rise from the Montana Department of Agriculture met with the Board to review the proposed nursery fee legislation for the 2017 Legislative Session. The Board spent considerable time discussing ideas for the 2017 Expo. Due to lack of participation in the Plant ID exam at Expo, it was decided to eliminate the Plant ID exam at future Expos. That exam will continue to be held at the Fall Tour in addition to an exam in September in Bozeman. It was decided to hold the 2018 Expo in Missoula. The following day a Strategic Planning meeting was held with Shawn Clouse facilitating the meeting. Four Past Presidents attended to contribute ideas in addition to the current MNLA Board of Directors.

  • 01 Jan 2016 9:55 PM | Kevin Johnson (Administrator)

    The meeting was called to order in Missoula at the Hilton Garden Inn during the Montana Green Expo. The minutes of the previous meeting and financials were reviewed and approved. 236 people registered to attend Expo. The Board reviewed their duties and responsibilities for Expo. The 3rd Vice President nominee is Nathan Heinitz of Gardenwerks in Helena. Nathan will be voted on at the Annual Meeting. The Board voted to approve the proposal from Kevin Johnson of Great River Design to redevelop the theme of the website to a more responsive design which would make it usable on all screen sizes including desktop, iPad, tablets, and all mobile phones at a cost of $3,600.00. James Prchal and Sarah Kleinschmidt will attend the Idaho Exposition in Boise on January 20-22. Holly Wadsworth and Mike Cashman will attend the AMTOPP Conference January 24-26 at Fairmont. The Fall Tour location was selected and will be held in Missoula in September. The Spring Board meeting will be held in Bozeman February 25-26.

  • 01 Dec 2015 7:44 PM | Kevin Johnson (Administrator)

    The December meeting was held by conference call and was called to order by President Sarah Kleinschmidt. The minutes and financials were approved by Consent Agenda. Expo details were reviewed. James will introduce Past Presidents at the Wednesday luncheon. Seating will be assigned by adding the name of a tree to nametags to create connexity. Celebrity names will be assigned with first name to attendees and last name to vendors as a mixer at the cocktail reception. Breakfast of Champions topics were discussed. James emailed a draft schedule to the Board to review for Expo Staffing. 67 Booth spaces have been rented. We are pleased to have received $4,248 in sponsorships. Shane is working with the FFA advisor to get volunteers to help with vendor move-in. MSU Extension has emailed the Free Seminars flyer to their Master Gardener List. We will have a Job Posting Board at Expo. Three students are registered for the CPP Exam. Donna Rise sent Jennifer nursery law updates to add to the CPP manuals. Three entries in the Best of MT Landscapes contest and three entries in the Container Plant Contest. Jyl purchased a 32GB IPad for $399 for the Grand Prize drawing. SBGA will provide a credit card reader to add to a tablet for credit card purchases at Expo. The Vendor meeting time will be moved to 1:00 pm on Wednesday so as not to interfere with the Keynote Speaker address. The annual meeting information will be included in the registration packets so members have time to review the information prior to the Thursday luncheon meeting. We will offer Q & A time at the meeting for member questions.

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