The board of directors held a meeting in Great Falls on September 15, 2011. The minutes from the June meeting were unanimously accepted. The current financial situation was reviewed and approved. The association has paid for a portion of the new web-based database and integrated website. Josh will be looking for possible board member candidates at the Fall Tour in Great Falls. Holly and Jennifer will remain on the board of directors for another term. The association has 184 current members. The board discussed mailing postcard type advertisements to prospective members, and designing a poster for vendor/distributor type locations for prospective members as well. The online version of the latest The Leaflet newsletter is posted on the website. The details of the 2012 Montana Green Expo were discussed and finalized. The Member of the Year was nominated. The awards for the “best of” awards will be plaques this year, not a small monetary prize. Bob will be in charge of the silent auction at the Expo. The board discussed the possibility of hiring a part-time executive director to fulfill the office duties. All board members will be providing the president with a scope of work for the possible job position. The board will then discuss a rate of pay for the job position. After the 2012 Expo, the board will have a better idea of a budget for this.
The board of directors held a conference call on June 15, 2011. The minutes from the May meeting were unanimously accepted. The current financial situation was reviewed and approved. The board discussed the status of the membership drive. The membership renewal forms were mailed out to current members. Vendor invoices will be mailed out this month. The board has hired eBiz Services to create an online database with an integrated website. Walt from eBiz will hopefully be attending the Expo to discuss and expose the new tool to our members. The board will be providing the Dep’t of Agriculture a list of classes to get approval for pesticide license credits. The summer edition of The Leaflet newsletter is ready to be finalized and mailed out. The board will be exploring and learning about the new online database and website.
The board of directors held a conference call on May 25, 2011. The minutes from the April meeting were unanimously accepted. The current financial situation was reviewed and approved. The board discussed the status of the membership drive. Steve and Holly have provided the board with a list of candidates. The membership renewal forms will be mailed out to current members in June. The Legislative committee discussed the status of SB 126, and stated that the bill was passed and signed by the governor. Approximately ½ of the booths have been booked for the 2012 Montana Green Expo Trade Show. The board will be sending out vendor agreements/contracts in June. The brochure for the Fall Tour will be finalized in June and mailed out soon thereafter. Shane will be providing the board and members with the Fall Tour schedule. The summer edition of The Leaflet newsletter is being put together, and the board will be working on the articles, and emailing them to Shane. The board discussed the possibility of having a web-based database with an integrated website. Ebiz Services will be providing the association with some information and a possible proposal for this.
The board of directors held a conference call on April 20, 2011. The minutes from the March meeting in Three Forks were unanimously accepted. The current financial situation was reviewed and approved. The board discussed a membership drive, which will include a membership packet mailing to all prospective members that the board provides. The Legislative committee discussed the status of SB 126, and stated that there was some opposition from folks in the industry who, as contractors who buy and resell plant material, did not think the fees were fair, and that contractors should be exempt from the fees and other incurred expenses and time for nursery inspections. The bill is on a back burner at the moment, and will resurface in the legislature within the next month. A preliminary schedule was provided to the board for the 2012 Montana Green Expo. Speaker contracts will be mailed out, booths will continue to be solicited and booked for the trade show. The board decided to hold an extra seminar on Friday for an additional fee featuring Jim Huston. The annual Fall Tour will be held in Great Falls this year, and will be hosted by Green Up, Tilleraas and Forde Nursery. The Education Committee chair will be contacting MSU to seek applications for the scholarship.
The board of directors met on March 11, 2011 in Three Forks, Montana, at the Wheat Montana Deli. All board members were present. The board opened the meeting with discussion of the financials, which at this time of year, did not take long. The financials were unanimously approved. The board opened a discussion on digital communication ideas as another venue to reach our members. The board will be requesting email addresses as necessary with membership renewal forms. Bob suggested that the board look into Constant Contact, a digital communication company. The association will be sharing the mailing list with the Idaho Nursery and Landscape Association, and will receive theirs in return. These lists will not be given to outside parties. The board approved the budget for the upcoming fiscal year. The March Leaflet was fresh off the press, passed around, and all board members were happy with the outcome. The legislative committee has been working diligently on getting the nursery license bill passed. The bill currently is being revised. The board then opened the discussion on the 2012 Montana Green Expo, which will be held in Billings on January 4-5, 2012. The board discussed speaker ideas, food and beverage ideas, and other aspects of the convention. All board members are very excited, and agree that this upcoming Expo will be a great experience for all in the green industry. The MNLA Fall Tour and CPP exam will be held in Great Falls this year, with more details to come.
The board of directors approved the January 28, 2011 minutes as presented. Several thoughts and considerations were discussed regarding the omission of the executive director position on the board. It was decided to hire eBiz Services on an as-needed basis to help the board become familiar with the database and website. Glacier Nursery is working on the March edition of The Leaflet newsletter, and it is coming along nicely. We will be editing the mailing list before mailing to be sure no extra costs are incurred with printing and mailing. The board decided to print the newsletter on recycled paper, which is more cost effective and better for the environment. The legislative bill that our committee has been working on, SB 126, has made it to the floor, and the committee will be making some small revisions. The board started planning the 2012 Green Expo, which will be held in Billings in January. Shane has been working on vendor booth assignments. A speaker list for the educational portion of the Expo was started. The Fall Tour is in very early stages of planning, and will be held in Great Falls this September. The board plans to meet again in early March.
Two Special Meetings of the Board of Directors were held on January 14 & 28 to finish the business of transferring power from the executive director to the board of directors. Lori reminded the board to read all of the documents and information she provided so board members would begin to understand each of their functions and responsibilities. In addition to general business, Lori asked the board for a vote on returning loans to members. The vote was unanimous. It was decided that the following functions will be handled by these board and volunteer members:
Incoming 3rd Vice President Bob Broughton was welcomed to the BOD. The two December board meeting minutes were reviewed and approved. Lori reviewed a number of Expo details including speaker announcements, Breakfast of Champions round table discussion topics, and procedures for Great Green Ideas. Lori asked the board for decisions on several issues regarding who will take over functions of the executive director. Several key decisions were made including transferring responsibility for the finances to Jessica MacDonald at Wagner Nursery, transferring hard copy files to Glacier Nursery & Biggy’s Landscaping for distribution, transferring a memory devise with all association electronic files to Steve, assignment of Steve and Jake as the new signers on the bank account, cancellation of the 800 number, Glacier Nursery to collect mail from the MNLA PO box and forward it to the appropriate people, moving the conference call line to Jake’s responsibility, continuing to have eBizServices maintain the MNLA website, Glacier Nursery to take over the production of the Leaflet newsletter, and transferring management of the critical association database to Janet Lynn Hutton. Lori also reminded the board of additional decisions that need to be made before she leaves on January 31, including the need to replace the credit card processing system. Shane reported the status of the nursery license bill which will start in the Senate.
A special meeting of the board of directors and invited guests Brad Brown and Jerry Cashman was held to continue the discussions about MNLA’s financial situation. The board brought several ideas into the discussion, including some possible volunteers for running the association. The board decided to contact members to aggressively seek good Expo attendance. The board will finalize these discussions at the January board meeting and announce their conclusions at the Membership Meeting.