Executive Committee Report – Sept 10/07

BRIDGS
Executive Committee Report
September 10, 2007
Trading Post

Present:  John Malmstrom, Susan Malmstrom, Rev. Ken Perkins, Hal Theriault, Gerry Chute.

The meeting was called to order at 9:00 AM.

Special Speaker: at this week’s general meeting will be Terri McCulloch, who has expertise on Bay of Fundy interpretation.  There is no place at this end of the province that has an interpretive centre, and Bear River could take advantage of this.  Hal said that this is part of the Digby Area Tourism Association’s plan for the area, and Bear River could be a satellite location.

General Meeting: Question was raised as to whether we will have time for regular meeting business on Wednesday.  John will put through quickly any issues that need to be addressed to allow plenty of time for Terri.  Some important items: 1) our new employee, Jared Haight, will start at the Youth Centre on September 24; 2) we received the first annual grant for the Youth Centre from the Municipality of Annapolis in the amount of $1,000.

Youth Centre/Active Saturdays Update:
•    Active Saturdays! is still going strong.  We will continue to offer soccer and softball at Lansdowne Field.  For next year, we may change the day and time to an evening weekly event (e.g. Active Thursdays!).  We will apply for another grant, with the aim to buy gloves and other equipment.
•    Meanwhile, to get Jared set up, Gerry and Hal are working on getting a phone and computer; Susan is arranging internet and phone hook-up; Caroline will be working with him to get properly registered with the RCMP.  Gerry will meet with him on his first day; John will meet with him during his first week.  Jared will report to Hal, who will keep BRIDGS apprised on his progress via monthly report.
•    There is an opportunity for advertising our activities through Digby Elementary School.  Caroline Draper has information on this—Ken believes that it is through their publication, “The Tide.”  We will find out if a similar publication goes out from the Annapolis system, and be sure that Jared knows how to access these.
•    Hal is working with Glendean and BREDS to write a grant which will help bring potable water to the building.  Since they rent to the Youth Centre, this is a health issue for the children occupying the space.
•    Next rent check is due on October 1.
•    Variety Night: is October 27.  Gerry and Hal will have Jared work right away on publicity for the event.  It was proposed that we have costumed characters from the play on hand.  Also, we need to check as soon as possible on the next deadline date for the Tributary.

Strategic Plan: It was decided that the Executive Committee and the Strategic Plan Committee should review the Plan and come together for a brain-storming session as soon as possible.  Susan will contact everyone about their availability for such a meeting.  The intention will be to decide what our immediate, short-term goals (doable in six months) are, and to draft a timeline for short- and long-term aims.

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Minutes, March 29, 2006

BRIDGS
(Bear River Innovation, Development and Growth Society)
Tuesday, March 29, 2006
Bear River First Nations Cultural Center

Present:  Cindy Harris, Jane Kingston, John & Susan Malmstrom, Hal Theriault, David Isles, Don Rice, Rob Buckland, Tiiu Poder, Mary Golding, Glendean Parker.  Special Guests: Cameron Smith, Bear River Fire Hall; Deputy Warden Jimmy McAlpine, Municipality of Digby; Cpl. Ron Koknevicius, RCMP, Digy Detachment; Carol White, Hillsburg United Church.

1. Call to Order
Meeting called to order at 7:30 PM

2. Introduction of Minutes from Previous Meeting

3. New Business
Hillsburg United Church Donation:  Carol White presented David Isles with a check from the Church in the amount of $125 towards the launch of the Youth Centre.
Fire Hall Presentation:  Cameron Smith of the Bear River Fire Hall made a presentation regarding the ongoing need for additional volunteers for the Fire Hall’s regular duties and programs, and the additional need for workers when the Cherry Carnival planning gets underway for this year’s event (slated for July 15).  The following are opportunities for BRIDGS members to get involved:
i)    Regular firefighting duties, including truck and hall maintenance
ii)    Breakfast Fundraiser—First Saturday of every month: serving, cooking. dishwashing, etc.
iii)    Cherry Carnival: need help with the auction, manning booths, picking up garbage, giving directions, managing crowds, running other errands as needed
iv)    Junior Firefighters: this is a new initiative that the Fire Hall is launching to get youth involved and line up potential future firefighters.  BRIDGS may also be able to help with creating a youth float for the Cherry Carnival with the Junior Firefighters.
Please contact Cameron any time to volunteer: 467-0440, or email: bearriverfd@pitzo.com.  Don suggested that the Fire Hall keep running notices in the Tributary to try and attract more volunteers.
Meeting Dates: Susan suggested an alternative to the current twice-monthly meeting schedule.  It was proposed that the officers meet ahead of each monthly meeting to formulate the agenda and take care of regular, ongoing duties.  This would necessitate the entire Board to only need to convene once per month.  MOTION: Moved by Cindy Harris to convene the officers once per month, to precede a monthly meeting by the full board.  Seconded by Jane Kingston.  CARRIED.
New Treasurer: Wayne Smith has offered to step in as Treasurer, to take over for Jane who was Acting Treasurer.  When Wayne returns from Ontario, the other officers will meet with him to open a checking account and establish signing authority.  MOTION: Moved by Rob Buckland that the Offices of Chair, Vice Chair or Treasurer will have signing authority, any two of the three signatures being necessary to issue a check on behalf of BRIDGS.  Seconded by Don Rice.  CARRIED.  (Other duties of the Treasurer will include establishing and maintaining a current balance sheet, drafting proposed budgets, implementing an annual audit, and creating a receipt system for donations.)
Health Centre: The question was raised as to what BRIDGS might do for the Health Centre, which recently suffered a devastating fire.  Currently, their board is waiting to hear from their insurance company.  Hal and Susan had recently attended their annual general meeting, where Hal suggested that they contact the Job Creation Partnership to hire a manager via federal funding.  The South West Health Authority recently turned them down for a proposal for an employee. Jimmy and Brian Coker (their board member) met to discuss the rebuilding effort.    Hal will contact Shirley Isles to see if they need assistance with writing proposals.  BRIDGS can also offer any letters of support that might help.  Glendean said that the Ladies Auxiliary of the Legion will organize a benefit on the Centre’s behalf, and that BRIDGS members could help with this, along with the Fire Hall, Board of Trade, and the local churches.
Water & Sewage Issues: Jimmy announced that the proposed Water Study (critically important for the area) has been approved and added to this year’s budget and  is definitely on the Municipalities’ schedule.  Once funding is secured for the project, which will involve many upgrades and adjustments, it will be put forward for tender.

4.  Subcommittee Meeting Presentations
Youth Subcommittee:
David presented the latest fundraising report, as well as a draft of a monthly budget proposal.  Other potential revenue streams: Malmstrom Studios will donate (up to) $100 in a match challenge grant to other local art studios; Jane (along with Bonnie Macleod) created and donated a garden/spring-themed basket for raffle—David will contact Sobey’s to set up a donation table day; Rob has donated 2 bicycles which after repair, might be rented out to tourists this summer; bottle drives were discussed, with Jimmy offering advice to make them a success (pre-publicity is key—along with a central donation centre and 4 or 5 trucks).  Jimmy also advised BRIDGS to submit a financial report and project budget in the form of a proposal to both municipalities, which he would support.  Rob also suggested a for-charge service to pick up materials for recycling or proper disposal.
Liability insurance for the Youth Centre is the priority expense for BRIDGS that will be aquired as soon as enough funding is secured, Jane having completed the research to identify the appropriate insurer.  Once this hurdle is passed, we will be able to launch the Centre.

5.  Review and Adoption of Minutes from Previous Meeting
MOTION:  Moved by Jane Kingston, seconded by Rob Buckland to approve and adopt the Minutes of the January 24, 2006 meeting. CARRIED.

6.  Next Meeting
May 10, at 7:30 pm at the Bear River First Nations Cultural Centre.

7.  Adjournment
Motion made by Cindy Harris for adjournment, seconded by Rob Buckland.
CARRIED.  Meeting adjourned at 8:45 PM.

Minutes, January 24, 2006

BRIDGS
(Bear River Innovation, Development and Growth Society)
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
Bear River First Nations Cultural Center

Present:  Cindy Harris, John & Susan Malmstrom, Andrew Riddles, Hal Theriault, Jeremy Morine, David Isles, Jay & Cheryl Stone, Jane Kingston, Don Rice.  Guests: Tom Haynes Paton and Leslie Frederichs.

1. Call to Order
Meeting called to order at 7:30 PM

2. Introduction of Minutes from Previous Meeting

3.  Special Guests: at the meeting were Tom Haynes Paton and Leslie Frederichs, who presented information on a new, non-profit start-up business with the goal of introducing effective microbes to gardeners and farmers to rejuvenate their compost piles.  For those interested, please contact them via email: ematlanticcanada@hotmail.com.

4. New Business
Joint Stock Status: Joint Stock Status: Our paperwork needed slight revisions, including new by-laws pertaining to conflict of interest issues.  These revisions were made and the paperwork returned to Halifax, since time is of the essence in receiving our status approval.

Water & Sewage Issues: On January 26, the wardens, CAOs, and councillors of Digby and Annapolis will hold a meeting to discuss the ongoing issue of solving our water and sewage problems.  Hal and John will attend to represent BRIDGS.  The meeting will take place at 3 PM in the Digby Municipal Building.
Don suggested that BRIDGS invite the councillors of Digby and Annapolis to a meeting here to walk them through the village to insure that they are aware of the state of things.

5.  Subcommittee Meeting Presentations
Youth Subcommittee:
Coffeehouse: So far, $98 from ticket sales on the quilt raffle has been raised; $34 on the Valentine’s Day Basket.  More donations of furniture have also come through, including a piano from Paula Hicks and a music console.
We need to have RCMP-screened chaperones standing by when the coffeehouse opens; Jane volunteered that she has already been through the process.   Susan will look into the process and will get the word out to those who have signed on as chaperones.
Hal has been in contact with Andre Bouchard and Deb Ryan of Annapolis Recreation regarding outside activity opportunities for young people.  We will try and loop the Oakdene (who received a Recreation Nova Scotia grant) in on this issue.  Also, a “ReGeneration Symposium” is scheduled for March 24-26.  Hal will share more information on this as it is available.
BRIDGS should receive a discount on liability insurance based on our non-profit status.  As soon as our status is approved, we can approach  Recreation Nova Scotia about this.

6. Video Presentation: Hal shared with those present a recently produced video on successfully sustaining and maintaining a public youth centre.  The focus was on  mentorship, community support and sustainable energy.  Those present felt that the video made some excellent points, particularly with regard to making certain that those being served (the youth) are the ones who are determining what is offered and always have a say in how the centre is run.

7. Review and Adoption of Minutes from Previous Meeting
MOTION:  Moved by Andrew Riddles, seconded by Cindy Harris to approve and adopt the Minutes of the January 10, 2006 meeting. CARRIED.

8.  Next Meeting: TBA.

9.  Adjournment
Motion made by Cindy Harris for adjournment, seconded by Jane Kingston.  CARRIED.  Meeting adjourned at 9:00 PM.

BRIDGS Vision and Mission Statement (v3)

After considerable, informal discussions, several citizens of the Bear River area concluded that the community is in need of revitalization and economic development, and so formed The Bear River Innovation, Development, and Growth Society (BRIDGS), a volunteer, not-for-profit organization. Our mission is “to improve Bear River’s infrastructure, commerce, and economic viability, and thus foster community pride while offering improved quality of life for residents, quality of experience for visitors, and incentive for people to make the community their new home.” We seek also to become a group to encourage and facilitate potential volunteers in our community; that is, to mate people with organizations needing these volunteers.

BRIDGS seeks to form vital partnerships with the involvement and in-put of community organizations and individuals as we finalize our plans. BRIDGS then will draft proposals for potential funders based on our mission.

The Bear River Plan is a multi-faceted plan that will result in:

(1) a revitalization and revival of our main street and waterfront; and

(2) the associated development of new and renewed year-round attractions to draw visitors and new citizens to the community.

Identified Projects

(1) Streetscape and Waterfront:

• completion of sewage system;
• development of a comprehensive water sourcing and delivery system on Annapolis County side of the river;
• installation of sidewalks from seniors’ home to the village and through the village;
• appropriate signage;
• repair and replacement of cribwork along the river bank;
• strengthen and secure road side retaining walls consistent with village heritage;
• establish better accessibility and visibility of the waterfront park and the solar aquatics treatment facility, including full-time interpretive tours of the latter;
• repair of riverside boardwalk;
• canoe and kayak launch/rental facility on the old mill property;

• walking trail through a series of micro habitats and gardens;
• hiking, horse and ski trails;
• organized recreational activities for youth, adults and seniors such as softball and soccer leagues;
• new office (including technical updating for e-commerce), shop, and residential space in underutilized, renovated buildings;
• streetscape cosmetic improvements, such as lamp posts and hanging flower baskets.

(2) New and Renewed Attractions

• assist Oakdene and other interested parties is developing facilities for youth to encourage them to enjoy positive, productive activities, including the building of a multi-use court for basketball, skateboarding, and so on;

• assist the Bear River Heritage Museum Board in development of new programs, upgrading of facilities, or in whatever other way they define;

• “THE BEAR RIVER CENTER” to be housed in retrofitted, underutilized community buildings, and offering cultural and technological immersion experiences in the form of day-long to week-long workshops during which participants will be housed at local bed and breakfast establishments; workshops will be offered in specialized areas such as master art classes, alternative energy technology, drama, computer animation, etc.;

• “THE TIDAL RIVER INTERPRETIVE CENTER” highlighting the role of the river in the community’s heritage, again housed in existing buildings; included will be a major water sculpture illustrating the nature of our tides, interactive displays and models of Bear River’s logging, shipping, and guiding heritage, “green” technology exhibits, and costumed character interpreters, etc.;

• community radio station;

• consistent staffing of the Bear River Cap Site and library (located within the Oakdene Centre);

• farmers’ market for local produce;

• presentation at regular intervals of an original play about Bear River history at the Oakdene Center;

• concerts and seasonal festivals featuring local musicians on a regular schedule at Oakdene and the Exhibition Grounds.

All these innovations will result in significant increases in economic activity and employment, visitor and tourist traffic, and vital improvement in village self-sustainability. “The Bear River Plan” capitalizes on the village’s present reputation as an artistic Mecca, our noteworthy heritage, the uniqueness of our geography, tides, and building structures, our popularity with tourists, and the strengths of our citizens.

Minutes, November 22, 2005

BRIDGS
(Bear River Innovation, Development and Growth Society)
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Bear River First Nations Cultural Center

Present: Cindy Harris, Jane Kingston, John & Susan Malmstrom, Andrew Riddles, Hal Theriault, Jeremy Morine, David Isles, Don Rice, Mary Harris, Tim Wilson, Carol Dibble, Jenny Stewart, Wanda Atwell.

1. Call to Order
Meeting called to order at 7:30 PM

2. Introduction of Minutes from Previous Meeting

3. New Business
Directors and Officers Insurance: It was noted that we will probably not need to take out an insurance policy to protect board members from liability as recently enacted legislation makes it unnecessary. We will keep this in mind as we move forward with our incorporation as a society.

Attending BRIDGS for the first time: Carol Dibble, Jenny Stewart and Wanda Atwell. All were welcomed.

Follow-up to the Community Meeting: Overall, it was felt that there was positive energy and much enthusiasm exhibited at the meeting. The comments that were received from attendees were reviewed by the Meeting Subcommittee (see attached). Susan and Hal felt that the next step was to incorporate the submitted suggestions into the vision plan, and to add those who expressed an interest in volunteering to our mailing and email lists. Hal reported that Harold Theriault, Jr., our MLA in attendance at the meeting, offered his assistance without reservation, and was impressed by the Community Meeting; we’ll keep him apprised as we move forward.

Water Meeting: It was noted that there was a meeting (simultaneous to ours) that was being held to address the ongoing village water problem. John noted that member Andrew Riddles, who is also Chair of the Water Board, was attending that meeting on our behalf and will make a report to us regarding their discussion.

Board Structure: MOTION: Moved by Tim Wilson that the Board complete the formal steps necessary to formalize the legal operating status of BRIDGS as a non-profit society. Seconded by Jane Kingston. CARRIED. Cindy noted that since our paperwork was begun a few months back, we should start the process over. She will try to bring the necessary forms to the next meeting.

Interim Executive Committee: BRIDGS has been operating with an interim Executive Committee consisting of John Malmstrom, Chair; Tim Wilson, Vice Chair; Susan Malmstrom, Secretary; and Jane Kingston, Treasurer. There was a call for discussion as to whether these members should continue to serve in these roles. (Don requested that copies of the Mission Statement be distributed to those who were not familiar with it.) There was also discussion as to how long officers should serve; the suggestion of one-year terms was put forward. This will be outlined in our by-laws, which should be drafted as soon as possible. Jane and Susan expressed that they would like to be replaced if anyone would like to serve in these roles. Jenny suggested that the term “acting” be added to their titles to indicate that these positions are essentially open.
MOTION: Moved by Cindy Harris that the first year Executive Committee of BRIDGS consist of: John Malmstrom, Chair; Tim Wilson, Vice Chair; Susan Malmstrom, Acting Secretary; and Jane Kingston, Acting Treasurer. Seconded by Jeremy Morine. CARRIED.

4. Subcommittee Meeting Presentations
Youth Subcommittee:
The Subcommittee has been informed by BREDS that there is space available for the Coffeehouse. The exact terms of occupation (such as heat, insurance, rent) will be worked out soon.
The Subcommittee is working on plans for various fundraisers, including a bottle and can drive. Wanda noted that she was specifically in attendance to speak to the Subcommittee following the meeting, as she is working with Annapolis County on recreation programs and would like to feature what they are accomplishing in an upcoming newsletter.
Other suggestions included talking to Alliant about a package phone service deal and the Superstore for donations of coffee and other items (they should specifically speak to Verona at the Digby store). John noted that the Subcommittee should stress that they are requesting donations for a non-profit society whenever they approach anyone about in-kind goods and services.
The proposed mid-December official opening of the coffeehouse may be pushed back, depending on the construction timeline. It was noted that BREDS have expressed enthusiasm for this project. We will need to be diligent about the chaperoning process. Jane said that it will be necessary for all chaperones to be officially screened through the RCMP, and that we should get BRIDGS on the list to do this as soon as possible.

5. Other Business
Fundraising and Partnerships
Hal followed up on working out a partnership between BRIDGS and Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council, through their “ready to work” skills building program. It will be held at the First Nations Centre to tie-in partnerships such as those between BRIDGS and First Nations. We will also try and use the Trading Post when possible (after May) for other programs.
Weymouth Renovations: Hal wanted to share the ongoing program of renewal and renovation that is happening in the village of Weymouth, as they share many of the same obstacles to renewal as Bear River (i.e. split county jurisdictions). After forming a committee in 1996 and putting together a vision and mission similar to ours, they have now received substantial funding for infrastructure revitalization, and we can learn from their example.
Among the next steps we will need to take are putting together a strategic plan and a feasibility study. Hal has collected materials from Canadian Tourism and other offices to begin looking at applications to fund a strategic plan. We may need to hire someone to create a business plan for BRIDGS. It was suggested that a bullet-pointed, chronological listing of the next steps we need to now follow to officially launch fundraising be created.
Strengthening our ties with the other organizations in the village is vital, and we need to work on recruiting members as representatives from these groups. Jane will contact people at the Oakdene and BREDS to become members. We should also find out if BRIDGS can publish calls for volunteers and meeting attendance in the Tributary.

6. Review and Adoption of Minutes from Previous Meeting
MOTION: Moved by Tim Wilson, seconded by Cindy Harris to approve and adopt the Minutes of the November 8, 2005 meeting with the following spelling change: “Keith Robichaux” to replace “Keith Robichaud.” CARRIED.

7. Next Meeting
December 6, at 7:30 pm at the Bear River First Nations Cultural Centre. (Please note:
we will be meeting at the Cultural Centre, not the Band Hall, through the winter.)

8. Adjournment
Motion made by Susan Malmstrom for adjournment, seconded by Hal Theriault.
CARRIED. Meeting adjourned at 8:50 PM.

Minutes, November 8, 2005

BRIDGS
(Bear River Innovation, Development and Growth Society)
Tuesday, November 8, 2005
Bear River First Nations Band Hall

Present:  Cindy Harris, Chris Hutchins, Jane Kingston, John & Susan Malmstrom, Andrew Riddles, Hal Theriault, Jeremy Morine, David Isles, Don Rice, Seretha Balcom, Rob Buckland-Nicks, Mary Harris, Wayne Smith, Tim Wilson.

1. Call to Order
Meeting called to order at 7:30 PM

2. Introduction of Minutes from Previous Meeting

3. New Business
The logistics of the community wide village meeting, to take place November 9, were discussed at length.  We may have an MLA drop in, as well as someone from the press. After this meeting, we will be able to formalize our structure as a registered non-profit society, and the executive committee will be formed.  Collated results of the community group discussions will be made available as soon as possible.

4. Review and Adoption of Minutes from Previous Meeting
Changes were noted to the previous meeting’s minutes: spelling of David Isles’ name, spelling of Grey Mckenzie’s name, Hal Theriault met with the Warden of Digby County, and Keith Robichaud related the information that funding has been established for a water survey in 2006.

MOTION:  Moved by Cindy Harris, seconded by Andrew Riddles to approve and adopt the Minutes of the October 18, 2005 meeting with noted changes. CARRIED.

5.  Subcommittee Meeting Presentations
Youth Subcommittee:
The Subcommittee has now drafted a preliminary budget for the proposed coffeehouse.
They have also submitted an offer to rent one of the available spaces in the village and are waiting to hear back from the owners.

6. Other Business
Hal is working on a partnership between BRIDGS and Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council, following a conference he recently attended and presented at in Halifax.  The Council funds attendance at travel and tourism training programs.

7.  Next Meeting
November 22, at 7:30 pm at the Bear River First Nations Cultural Centre. (Please note:
we will be meeting at the Cultural Centre through the winter.)

8.  Adjournment
Motion made by Andrew Riddles for adjournment, seconded by Hal Theriault.
CARRIED.  Meeting adjourned at 8:45 PM.