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Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Commission
Transition Committee Meeting
L&C Bicentennial Commission Office
Helena, Montana
May 9, 2005
1:00 - 2:10 p.m.

The Transition Committee met at 1:00 PM on May 9, 2005, in the Commissionís Offices. In attendance were: Hal Stearns, chair, Arnie Olsen, Doug Monger and Rita Cortright. Homer Staves and Carol Bronson joined via conference call; Betsy Baumgart and Steve Kubick were unable to attend.

Prior to the meeting the Committee was provided with a General Duties Narrative and Timeline, in addition to a memo dated April 18, 2005, and budgets for FY05, FY06 and FY07.



The Committee began with a review of funding. License plate revenues were projected at $131,997 through FY06 and $56,098 for the first half of FY07. Beginning January 2007 revenues will no longer come to the Commission. Bed tax revenues through Commerce were projected at $200,000 through FY06 and $100,000 for the first half of FY07.


Clint Blackwoodís position will cease on July 31, 2006 and Rita Cortrightís position will cease Dec. 31, 2006, with the closing of the Commissionís offices.


Fiscal Duties:

Rita noted that the majority of duties would cease at the end of the calendar year; however, a few outstanding invoices might have to be coded and paid through the Societyís business office in early January 2007.

License Plates:

The Commissionís involvement with the bicentennial license plate will cease on Dec. 31, 2006. Rita noted that the sale of collector plates and the racking of future sales and revenue would become the responsibility of the four entities named in legislation to receive future plate revenues.

Commission Meetings:

The committee did not address the Commissionís meeting schedule.

Directorís Reports:

The committee agreed that reports should cease with Clintís departure.

Partner Coordination:

Partner coordination has primarily been the function of the executive director. Carol Bronson noted that COSA may sign a MOU with the Missouri Historical Society, but added that COSA might also sunset with the last Signature Event. She said Clint planned to attend the upcoming Aug. 5 meeting in Portland. The Trail Heritage Foundation planned to meet that same week. Hal said he could attend for the state Commission if needed. The committee agreed that involvement with MTRI, MTTA, NPS COSA, Natl. Council, and the Trail Heritage Foundation should phase out after July 2006.

Legislative Activity Ė Reporting:

No discussion.

Legacy Document Preparation:

Rita announced that Prof. Harry Fritz had helped locate a student, Robert Bauer, who was interested in working on the Commissionís Legacy Document. Dave Walter has arranged a meeting with Mr. Bauer on May 16 at the Commissionís office to discuss the project and confirm Mr. Bauerís interest in contracting with us to complete 10 weeks of work over the next two summers. The NPS CCS grant award for the project was $13,000 and would cover Mr. Bauerís fee, in addition to printing costs. The Commissionís financial responsibility would cover his travel expenses and supplies and the cost of distributing the final report. Rita said the final report should be completed in Nov. 2006; therefore the Society would probably not have to assume any responsibility for the project.


No discussion.

Access Database:

No discussion.

General Daily Duties:

No discussion.


The committee discussed the need to preserve the website in some form. Rita explained that the website was currently hosted for $25 per month by Tempest Technologies. Homer offered to check with a contact regarding how they had pulled and archived an entire website. Carol Bronson offered that the Foundation could include selected pages on their web site. After further discussion it was agreed this would be an appropriate topic for the upcoming COSA meeting. Arnie Olsen suggested that the entire web site should be printed for archival purposes and also incorporated into the Legacy Document.

Legacy Campaign:

Management of Legacy Campaign pledges past Dec. 2006 was discussed. Rita noted that 12 pledges remained open and that a couple of large pledges had been written off this spring. Four pledges extended past the close of the Commissionís office, one of which was PPLís annual $20,000 pledge for interpretive signage. Rita explained that the 2005 payment was designated for the Yellowstone Corridor, but the 2006 and 2007 payments were undesignated at this time. Doug Monger suggested identifying where the future sign funds were needed and then asking PPL to work directly with those entities, rather than assigning the responsibility to the Society. Rita was directed to contact Lisa Perry with PPL to discuss the situation.

Arnie suggested closing the Legacy Campaign as of June 2006, and directing the remaining pledges to the Campaign partners. Rita was directed to add this topic to the Commissionís June meeting agenda.

Grant Program:

Only the 2006 O&P grants were discussed. The committee suggested only granting to those RBCs and Tribes who could make a case for the needing the funds, rather than granting across the board to all groups.


Fiscal Year 2005:

Rita reviewed the FY 2005 budget, noting that license plate sales were holding steady. Line 107, Contingency funds contained $19,925 in unallocated funds, in addition to a cash balance of $37,906.38 as of June 30, for a total of $57,831 that could be carried into FY 2006. Rita noted that Clintís April 18, 2005 memo proposed allocating some of these funds prior to year-end to support the Signature Events.

Fiscal Year 2006:

In reviewing the 2006 budget, Rita explained that it was very similar to the FY 2005 budget with the exception of salary increases and reduced NPS CCS pass thru grant amounts. Doug explained that the raise was scheduled to take place in October 2006. Rita agreed to contact the Societyís payroll clerk to obtain more accurate salary costs.

The Program Grant amounts were reviewed and there was brief discussion on the equity of amounts projected for the Signature Events. No changes were recommended. The FY2006 budget did not project a year-end cash balance, as all available funds were allocated to program grants.

Fiscal Year 2007:

Income was reviewed first, and Rita noted that half of the annual $200,000 was projected from Bed Tax for the first 6 months of the FY, and the License Plate revenue of $56,209 was also for a 6-month period. She noted that income also reflected the projected repayment of the $50,000 loan to the Legacy Project Ė Senate Art.

Expenses were reviewed beginning with Personnel expenses that reflected estimated payouts for both employees. Doug Monger suggested checking to see if these amounts should be increased by 27% to cover benefits and Rita agreed to contact the Societyís payroll clerk. She noted that this was a bear-bones draft budget. The difference between projected in come and expenses was captured on line 74, Contingency Funds, totaling $65,783.56. This amount has yet to be allocated.


The Committee briefly discussed allocating funds prior to the end of FY 2005, but agreed instead to let the funds roll into the FY 2006 budget for consideration at the full Commission meeting June 2-3. Rita was directed to contact Peggy Bourne with Explore! to let her know she could expect the $20,000 projected in the FY06 budget in early July, 2005.

The meeting adjourned at 2:10 PM.



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