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Philip Chamber of Commerce revamping to general assembly and committee rule

The Philip Chamber of Commerce meeting on Monday, November 10, was its last as an organization run by a board of directors. It is now officially under a general assembly format of operations.

Though co-chair Kent Olson is willing to continue on in some capacity, he began the meeting as an out-going board chair by wrapping up old business. The plans to re-start the Prairie Expo are tabled for now. The optimum time for a livestock show, such as a pen-of-three, would have been in January. With the last expo being in January of 2005, the work would have been too daunting in the remaining time. Holding a home-show with business and craft booths in the school gymnasium is still a possibility for early next year, but a full blown Prairie Expo will have to wait until January of 2010.

Olson said, "The board of directors met earlier and now makes the recommendation, based on clear-cut and point-blank input, to dissolve and go to a general assembly format." The transition should not be as difficult as it might be. Two of the board members were reaching the end of their terms this December.

Suggestions were introduced on how the public relations work might get done; at least of answering the phone and replying to e-mails. No action was taken.

Olson said, "This chamber is now clearly and completely a volunteer organization; especially now that there are no paid employees, with the discontinuing of the coordinator's position."

The last act of the board members will be to close the chamber office and find storage space for the furniture and computer in an orderly fashion as soon as possible." The rent has been paid for through October, and November may be a pro-rated month if the office closing can be done quickly.

Milo Zeeb said, "Somewhere there are the by-laws and the mission statement from before 1989. There is no need to reinvent the wheel; they would be nice to have as at least a starting point. A committee or an individual can look those up before the next meeting."

Don Ravellette said, "This (the governing change and the looking for the by-laws) makes sense, especially in that previous discussions were to leave the team concept in place."

Don Haynes said, "Perhaps we just let down in everything getting done after the centennial celebration. People were just burned out."

Glenn Parsons said, "Being on the board can be an overload. But, delegation of duties could now be, as it was before, simply pointing to the appropriate committee and it then does what has to be done."

There are five committees, activities, business promotion, community development, economic development and hospitality. Members, when they first joined or there after when they paid their yearly dues, would choose which committee they preferred. The five seemed to always balance out with an estimated 25 names in each.

Corky Thorson, now former co-chair, voiced that the Philip Chamber governing format was again now similar to chambers of surrounding communities. Membership dues have been checked and all are paid up in full for the remainder of 2008. The chamber's membership dues method and amounts were in line and have been for the past 20 years. None-the-less, Zeeb and Ray Smith will review the dues structure and report back to the general assembly. Any suggestions will be made before the beginning of 2009, probably at the next meeting.

A nomination committee, consisting of Ravellette, Parsons and Doug West, will have contenders for the slate of new officers before the annual business and Christmas meeting on Monday, December 8, at the 73- Saloon. Even before the board of directors format was adopted in 1989, the annual meeting had been in December. From now on, all meetings will begin with a general business meeting. Then, any guest speakers or other business will be addressed.

At the December meeting, first order of business will be for the assembly to vote in a president, vice-president, secretary and treasurer.