Board Meeting Minutes – September 17, 2021

MRVTV Board Meeting Agenda – September 17, 2021

Board Members Present: John Daniell, Liz Levey, Rob Perry, Ilse Sigmund, Lisa Loomis, Roger Nishi, Tony Italiano, Ian Sweet

Roger Nishi, Tony Italiano,

Chair: Lisa Loomis

Meeting called to order @ 6:05pm.

Additions or changes to Agenda

  • Public Forum
  • Approval of Minutes of April 29, 2021 Board Meeting
  • Fundraiser update
  • Director’s Report – Rob P
  • Covid approach for Studio – Tony
  • Program/Technical Update – Tony
  • Waitsfield Cable Update – Roger
  • Financial Update – Rob P
  • Legislative updates
  • Channel streaming update
  • New Business
    • Office Space considerations
    • Board sizePublic Forum: No public present.
      Approval of Minutes of April 29, 2021 Board Meeting

      Ian makes a motion to approve the April 29th minutes; Liz seconds; all in favor.

      Community Day / Fundraiser Update – Liz Levey

      Event 9/17 from 4-7pm.

Liz, Tony & Rob Perry will start set up at 3pm.
Rob Williams arriving with equipment
Tony to pick up pizza & will purchase more on an as need basis. Lisa and Liz will staff the cashbox. Lisa L to sell pizza & drinks.

Director’s Report – Rob Perry

– Started streaming the channel around July 4th.

  • –  We had 2800+ livestream views on July 4th.
  • –  Rob notified sponsors of how many viewers were living streamingparade.
  • –  Pledges down from previous year. This year $1200 pledged.
  • –  Mad River Glen and Sugarbush reduced to $100.
  • –  Sugarbush & Tucker Hill Inn still have outstanding balances $100.Audience Data (see presentation)
    Top page hits – TenFest, Demise of Don Joslin.

    YouTube subscribers +1000 since last meeting for total of 10,700.

    Top Videos – Covered bridge Cam continues.
    Rob Perry said we lost monetization from click throughs but he appealed it and we got it back. Generates $50-$135/month.

    Newsletter – 25-32% open rate; this is within the expected range.

    Budget Review

    – Cable Grant budget is tracking pretty well through Q2.
    – We received $1000 from Harwood. We will receive town contributions in


    Expenses are tight.

    Legislative Update
    – Rob P joined VAN subcommittee to work on new funding model.

  • –  Rob P working on financials to show the dire reality of funding.
  • –  Liz thanks Rob for keeping the connection with the VAN group going.
  • –  We continue to support VAN financially. We made a contribution of $500for their fight with Comcast.
  • –  NEK is seeing increase in cable subscriptions. Area population growth isexplanation for increased cable.

    Clay Purvis, director of telecommunications for the State of Vermont, is not a supporter of PEG. His focus is broadband rollout.

    Tony says there are other ways to do what we do. We need to reinvent ourselves.

    Rob makes the point that MRVTV sets ourselves apart with the local/ municipal reporting, an aggregator and a curator of content.

    New Business – Rob Perry

    Office Space – Tony suggests we stay ahead of the curve in case we need to change office space if we have to get smaller. And there is a lot of space available in town now.

    Lisa suggests the studio space is valuable; we may not need office space for the director (Rob).

    Liz suggests we set up a subcommittee to evaluate the cost of change vs the cost of staying. But we should be aware of what is going on around us in terms of the real estate market.

    Tony noticed a new teacher at Harwood. She is a journalist and we could possibly approach her to join the board or work with us. If we moved into Harwood space, they could actually have a channel… an
    ‘Education Channel’. Tony & Lisa interested in collaborating with her to create content.

    Lisa, Liz, Tony & Rob to form committee to work on real estate market.

    MRVTV’s current rent is $1200/month + tax allocation which is about another $90.

Lisa likes the idea of having internships from Harwood.

Number of Directors

We are down to 8 board members – though Dan wants to step down and Brian Shupe left the board. We need 9 members to be fully enrolled. Lisa wants to recruit new members rather than change the by-laws. Can we possibly recruit from the fundraiser party tomorrow?

Tony points out that we need members who are willing to be active participants.

Liz points out that it is not a huge time commitment with 3 to 4 meetings a year and the occasional fundraiser.

Rob Perry will write a press release for the Valley Reporter; Tony will advertise on community calendar & FPF.

Covid approach for Studio – Tony

Tony reports we are currently wearing masks in the studio & doing 1 person shoots. There is no limit to the number of people in the office space.

Lisa agrees that requiring masks is definitely the way to go now.

Program/Technical Update – Tony

The Waitsfield Select Board meetings are back in person. Tony is shooting that Waitsfield Select Board each month.

The Harwood meeting is now hybrid. They have a 3 camera switcher, microphones are really good. Audio is good because they all user microphones. We should still send a camera guy even though we can download from YouTube.

Rob Perry is filming the Warren Select Board Meetings.

Tony is streaming the Waitsfield meetings live. We could live stream Warren meetings if we had a connection in the room. Rob Perry will ask Andrew if he knows if we can connect.

Roger said WCVT has not been able to get into the actual building at Warren to do the work.

Tony live streamed the annual MRV Chamber meeting on 9/15. TenFest was a big production.
Lisa plans to do some recordings around the bond for Harwood.

Waitsfield Cable Update – Roger

Per Roger, it is harder to run a cable company with all the options out there. The cable revenues are decent so far this year.

WCVT has contracted with two companies in the NEK to provide broadband internet over their networks. These revenues don’t help fund our channels.

Roger confirms that Fayston does have fiber now for Tony to use during the Fayston Select Boards.

Liz makes a motion to adjourn. Ian seconds. All in favor.

Meeting adjourned at 7:30pm.

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