Better Bennington Corporation
 Board Meeting Minutes

September 8, 2016
Bennington Fire Station

The mission of the Better Bennington Corporation
 is to build, improve, and support a vital downtown that benefits our entire community.

Present: President Michael McDonough, Jeannie Jenkins, Eric Peterson, Heather Maneely, Beth Wilwol, Kelley Clarke, Ted Bird, Michael Harrington*.  Staff: John Shannahan and Diane Perry. *Ex-officio
Absent: Shelley Colvin, Michael Keane, Edie Sawitsky, Keith Carey.

Call to Order
               A quorum was confirmed by President Michael McDonough who then convened the meeting at 7:43AM.

               The August 2016 board minutes were reviewed. Action/Resolution- a motion to approve was made by Eric Peterson and seconded by Ted Bird. Motion carried unanimously.

Financial Report
            Executive Director John Shannahan reported on the financials which were reviewed at the Organizational level. All is in order. Action/Resolution- a motion to approve was made by Heather Maneely, seconded by Ted Bird. Motion carried unanimously.

Director’s Report
Discussion regarding report:

  • Efficiency Vermont – this pilot program has completed its scheduled time in Bennington. Action/Resolution – John will meet with Meghan Chambers to recap this program and will also inquire about any plans to continue their efforts beyond the initial program. John will then report back to the Board.
  • AT Community – John is working an application for Downtown to be included in the Appalachian Trail community network. He will be contacting the local trail group Green Mt Club for partnership support. As a result, Downtown would be promoted in all the trail guides and maps that the trail participants use.  Action/Resolution – John will continue efforts in this process and report back to the Board.

Old Business

  • Park @ 336 Fundraising - a BBC Board meeting was recently held that focused on continued involvement of the Board. The small donations committee is in beginning stages of meetings. Action/Resolution- John Shannahan and Mike McDonough will solicit board members for their fundraising involvement.  John will evaluate plans to make the park space look seasonal with decorations. Beth Wilwol will make calls for available cornstalks.
  • BBC’s Role in the Future- discussions are to be guided by the BBC mission and will be explored in more depth at the Board retreat. Brainstorming ideas will include, but are not limited to, all opportunities, initiative, projects, facilitation of economic development, relationship to developers, positive marketing, BBC’s level of visibility, 30th year anniversary of BBC, the taxing district and funding source, an organizational name change, and clarifying our role and relations with various entities, such as the Chamber, Town, & Developers. It is a critical situation to clarify who we are and what we do. Our role may be to inspire others to be involved and to express excitement about Downtown.  Action/Resolution – John will prepare a list of the names of other Downtown organizations around the country. He will research the top five and their mission statements. John will also research if there is a written contract with the Town. Action/Resolution -the Org committee will meet to create the retreat’s agenda on Wednesday September 14th.

New Business

  • BBC Annual Retreat – October 13th 7:30am-1:00pm - Action/Resolution- John to send out agenda and a reminder to the Board.


Michael McDonough called for the adjournment of the meeting at 9:20am.  Action/Resolution - a motion was made to adjourn by Eric Peterson, seconded by Jeannie Jenkins. Motion carried unanimously.

Respectfully submitted,

Beth Wilwol, Secretary
Better Bennington Corporation

Bennington Downtown Alliance
215 South Street
Beautiful Bennington, Vermont 05201

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