Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and Convention & Visitors Bureau
Board of Directors Meeting
January 25, 2023

The Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and CVB Board of Directors met Wednesday, January 25, 2023. Chairperson Cynthia Carson called the meeting to order at 8:30 a.m. Pam Yancey provided the opening prayer.

Review of Minutes – Pam Yancey made a motion to approve the minutes of the December 14, 2022 meeting as presented. Jon Davidson seconded the motion. All approved. Motion carried.

Financial Report – Treasurer Phil Cox reviewed the current financials of the organization. Staff is in the process of wrapping up the year end. Pam Yancey moved to approve the financial report as presented. Cassie Cunningham seconded the motion. All approved. Motion carried.

Ex Officio Reports – Tourism Community Enhancement District – District board chair Derek Smith and Executive Director Kirk Elmquist reported they recently held a board retreat focusing on culture and communications. The board is currently reviewing applications for vacancies on the Finance Oversight Committee. They are also considering placing the renewal of the tax on the August 2023 ballot.

Ex Officio Reports – City of Hollister – City Administrator Rick Ziegenfuss reported Hollister is doing well. They are preparing for the new budget year, which begins April 1. Ziegenfuss reported on the Yacht Club progress. He also spoke about the marijuana tax and how municipalities should be looking to place the tax on a ballot soon.

Legislative Update – Monica Evinger provided a brief legislative update.

Membership Report – Janet Minor reviewed the report included in the packet. We ended the year with 878 members. Janet described the new Diplomat Program. Pam Yancey moved to approve the member drop list as presented. Rob Griffith seconded the motion. All approved. Motion carried.

Chairperson’s Report – Chair Cynthia Carson stated she is excited for 2023. Her desire is that this is an active board; working together, intentional, not afraid to ask questions and get engaged. She would like to see more members of the board at chamber functions. She touched on upcoming tax initiatives, Taney County Partnership housing study and the strategic plan, continuing to move the needle for the community.

President/CEO Report – Jason Outman provided a brief update on tiered dues.

The convention center expansion feasibility study was approved by the Board of Aldermen.

Outman reported the City of Branson has awarded $4.1 million in tourism tax funds for marketing. This is the first year the funds have been released before April 1.

The draft marketing plan will be presented to the Board of Aldermen at their January 31 Study Session. The theater cooperative marketing program with the city was successful. Attractions will be added this year.

Jason shared the organization’s 2022 list of accomplishments and accolades, which included record breaking tax collections. (List was emailed to board following meeting.)
Visitation is on pace to exceed 2021’s record year with 10.2 million visitors!

Taney County Partnership helped Big Cedar secure $9.4 million of the Governor’s Cost Share Program for Highway 86 expansion toward the arena.

White River Valley Electric Cooperative was awarded $47 million of the State of Missouri’s Broadband Infrastructure Grant Program.

Branson is #24 on Trip Advisor’s Most Popular Destinations list.

New Business – Jonas Arjes provided additional information on the Big Cedar/Governor’s Cost Share Program.

Present: Cynthia Carson, Mike Combs, Bryan Cossiboom, Phil Cox, Steve Critchfield, Cassie Cunningham, Jon Davidson, Robert Griffith, Tom Healey, Katie Hodges, Raj Patel, Mike Patrick, Steve Scherer, Sam Voisin, Craig Wescott, Lynne Yaggy and Pam Yancey

Ex-Officio Members Present: Kirk Elmquist, Derek Smith and Rick Ziegenfuss

Absent: Scott Bailes, Clay Cooper, Joe Loth and Brad Thomas