Board Meeting Minutes – 7/12/16

MRVTV Board of Directors meetingTuesday, July 12, 2016, 5:30 pmMRVTV studio, 5031 Main St., Waitsfield

Present: Board- John Daniel, Lisa Italiano, Lisa Loomis, Brian Shupe, Rob Williams Staff- Tony Italiano, Alex Maclay, community producer- Dan Zucker, Waitsfield cable rep.- Roger Nishi.

  1. Welcome/Additions, changes to agenda

    1. Lisa L. brought the meeting to order at 5:30.

    2. No changes to the agenda content, we may visit items out of order as we


  2. Public Forum

  3. Approval of minutes of board meeting of 4/19/2016

a. Rob moved that we accept the minutes. Lisa I. seconded. Motion passed.

4. Community Standards and Programming Policy discussion

  1. We are revisiting a discussion we began at our October meeting.

  2. History of the issue:

    1. We have a policy manual adopted most recently in May of 2010.We have made it clear that for programming there are “7 words” you can’t say on television. There is a question as to whether the FCC regulates cable television or not. It is Alex’s understanding that the board is the holder of the community standard. The board has the purview to make and hold the standards. Dan questions the use of the list as the community standard. What are our standards in terms of frequency and in terms of what time of the day a program is aired? We practice a “safe harbor” time, from 11 pm to5 am for programming with “adult content”.

    2. Dan’s response: Dan shared his history of use of and boardmembership for other VT public access stations. Dan speaks with experience more than authority. Dan sees the challenges as:

      1. Defining what we want to do (This will include updating contracts for producers and we will have known durations for the contracts.)

      2. How do we categorize what will be shown the “safe harbor” time. (be specific)

      3. Whatever the decision, it needs to be communicated to theproducers. It seems to Dan that the station’s response hasbeen after the fact, based on the original contract to

produce that Dan and his colleagues signed. Dan also cautions that the board will not want to behave in an arbitrary way toward producers.

4. Dan thinks the way to approach it is to support the policy not to think of it as protecting the community.

a. Motion: The board will create a subcommittee specifically to work on the issue of community standards and during that time any content that the board is currently considering “adult” will broadcast only between 11 pm to 5 pm. Rob so moved. John seconded. The motion passed.

b. Each producer remains responsible for reading ourproducer’s manual and adhering to our policy standards asstated there. We will ask each producer to sign that they have read our manual and agree to abide by the policies, and we will have producers sign this on a yearly basis.

c. We will focus on the process of how we work with and support producers, as well as continue to ensure they are abiding by our current producer’s manual, as we work to update it.

5. Technology update: Tony- discussion of picture quality and potential equipment purchase

  1. Discussion ensued about Waitsfield Cable’s head end to improve picturequality.

  2. Tony is buying one new camera this year and two new cameras next year. The new work-flow is on the computer and changes the way video is produced. The new system will need to handle both SD and HD. Tony and Roger will need to talk to Lyle and team from WCVT.

  3. We may need to plan on a $40,000 server as we move forward. Tony thinks only one station in VT is currently using HD.

6. Station/programming update: Alex/Tony
a. We have continued to host a variety of local programs and Cheryl and

Nina have been continuing to train to cover for Tony in his absence.

  1. Phantom Theatre

  2. Musical (not aired)

  3. Vermont Arts Fest

  4. Meetings

  5. Dog Rescue

  6. Welcome to Reality

  7. Possible new yoga show

1. Discussion ensued about the details of the producer’smanual, which outlines the agreements we have made about what does and does not constitute advertisement in local or any programming. Questions are about self- promotion and/or taking business away from other similar businesses.

  1. Moretown is getting their new town office. We are talking with ORCA of Montpelier about our two stations sharing the filming of the town’smeetings there. (Possibly MRVTV in the winter and ORCA in the summer) as the two access stations’ territories overlap.

  2. Tony received another inquiry from someone who is interested in having a show.

  1. Financial update: 2016 YTD: Alex/Lisa

    1. Checking percentages of budget spent to date are on target. Sponsorships

      and memberships are not yet reflected because we don’t receive the funds

      until after the taxes are collected.

    2. We no longer make as much money as we used to for DVD sales.

    3. The VAN bill for 2016 2017 has been received and includes the VMX

      fees. Some board members want to have us only pay a pro-rated amount of the fees that are based on legal actions that benefit other Local Access stations directly, but not MRVTV. Lisa L. will research the question of our pro-rated share to see if there is room for a discussion at another meeting.

    4. Line up at the end of the meeting to receive your complimentary to Board Members mug or pint glass emblazoned with our logo.

  2. May 14 FUNdraiser/Fundraising update- Alex

    1. $1500.00 match from our ~$1420 received at the door. Bottom line was

      $3228.00. We continued to receive checks after the event from people

      who were unable to attend the fundraiser.

    2. New committee to continue efforts- How to proceed? What will be our

      new avenue of fundraising. Who would like to work on a new committee? Lisa I. would be willing to bring the WMRW perspective and practices to the committee as a member. We are looking for two to three other members to work on this. Sponsorship options, as long as there is no call to action, might be possible as long as we maintain our “no commercial content” policy.

  3. Other business: Next quarterly meeting (confirm) October 11, 13, 18 or 20. Alex will send a doodle with the above dates.

  4. Adjournment

a. John moved to adjourn at 6:58, Rob seconded and Lisa adjourned the