West Central Mountains Economic Development Council

Meeting Minutes

September 1, 2020, 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Kelly’s Whitewater Park

Members in Attendance:  Jill Chapman (President), Dylan Martin (Vice-President), Cynda Herrick (Secretary), Linnea Hall, Sherry Maupin, Lindsay Harris (telephonically), Nicole Musgrove (telephonically), Patty Wold, Andrew Mentzer (Executive Director) and Megan Chandler (Programming/Events).

Members Absent:  Gene Tyler, Judith Nissula, Julie Good (Treasurer), and Thom Sowers.

Executive team meeting, open at 2:30pm

Agenda discussion: add discussion about pre-apprenticeship for construction and annual meeting discussion – Linnea moved to approve the agenda as amended.

Approval of minutes (ACTION ITEM): Dylan moved to approve the minutes, Sherry seconded, motion carried.

Welcome visitors and guests: none

Community reports:

Cascade: Patty said Labor Day yard sale went well, school started – 30 children online and 32 new children.

Donnelly: no report

McCall: school starts on September 8th, grand opening for terrace for ponderosa center in Sept., new director of McCall Arts and Humanities Council, Patricia, is started and onboarding. 

New Meadows: school starts September 8th, entry signs are being worked on, Labor Day is a go – not the BBQ and breakfast, Meadow Creek Country Club  and Community Foundation is having a community/board meeting on September 10.

Valley County: very busy, Sept. 8 may see slow down in traffic due to Smiths Ferry improvements, working on a housing project, the county budget is approved, communicating with the Land Board to try to purchase access points.

Events and Programming report (Megan): putting information together for the Let’s Get Cooking series (culinary).

Treasurer’s report (ACTION ITEM) o Invoices/thank you’s for the month: postponed for proxy vote due to the fact that this meeting is occurring on the first of the month.

Letters/requests (ACTION ITEMS)

Broadband middle mile CARES Act letter for CEDA: Broadband letter for Cares Act support for Clearwater ED for fiber between Riggins corridor (New Meadows to Grangeville). Motioned and approved.

Scenic Byways update (DISCUSSION): working with ITD to get word out about ITD project; another byway meeting is scheduled for September 24.

Economic Summit final decision (ACTION ITEM) Discussion ranged across options, including in person, hybrid and cancelling.  Keynote could be in person, not on-line. We could show the safe way to have a conference, but there are a lot of risks. Cynda moved to cancel the summit for 2020 and request Andrew and Megan to create communications/produce videos for update on social media. Sherry seconded, motion carried.

Andrew presented an update on existing grants–McCall received $771K for fiber. All other grants are current. 

GEM/USDA: Weiser River Trail: $15K for New Meadows for Feasibility from Commerce to go with $25k from other partners. Feasibility project to get underway soon.

Recreation/Pathways o Heinrich and Donnelly Flyway update: MOU signed by City of Donnelly for Flyway – next step is to the Board of County Commissioners; there is an application to the county for 4000’ on Heinrich as well for a beta trail from Valley County Pathways.

Education and workforce development: BSU has 5 enrolees for fall programs, touched on pre apprenticeship options and the Talent Pipeline Management Academy trainings going on around Idaho.

IDAEYC ELAC program update & stipend payments: Discussion about the early childhood ed and daycare needs assessment being completed. Will be done in Sept.

Community Projects/Infrastructure o Coronavirus task force update (DISCUSSION) the Covid task force continues with weekly updates and marketing to locals and visitors.

Creative District update: Discussion about the upcoming effort to establish a creative district in our region with Idaho Commission for the Arts. More to follow in Sept. 

Housing expanded affordability resource to website: Andrew updated our housing resources page and added some affordability information that illustrates what’s going on with the market. Board voted and seconded approval of posting this to the website. 

Business retention and expansion: We continue to meet with businesses often, consistent with our Commerce grant requirements.

McCall downtown revitalization contract next steps (DISCUSSION) – elevate conversation around Opportunity zones and reinvestment opportunities in downtown (first, second & Lenora, and third).

Marketing/fundraising update (DISCUSSION) – Megan and Andrew – project oriented – can fundraise around our program outcomes as we head into 2021, however Andrew is not supposed to fundraise as the ED, so Megan and the board will work on options.

Round Table, Upcoming Events & Public Comments Adjourn