The Monthly Board of Directors Meeting

Wellsboro Area Chamber of Commerce


April 28, 2020


The regular meeting of the Wellsboro Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Director’s was held on Tuesday, April 28, 2020, at noon, via Conference Call due to corona virus COVID-19 pandemic.

Blake Maxson, Chamber President, presided over the meeting.


The following directors were present: Shawn Bryant, Terry Bryant, Michael Charles, Carrie English, Tim Gooch, Terri Hepp, Blake Maxson, Charlie Messina, Al Quimby, Kevin Thomas, and Leslie Wishard.


Members: Craig West, Borough of Wellsboro; Tim Morey, DCNR; Ashley Frost, Career Link/TREHAB; Rachel Preble, Animal Care Sanctuary; Ellen Bryant, Penn Wells Hotel.

Staff: Julie VanNess, Executive Director; Sharon Hazelton, Events Coordinator & Member Specialist, Jane Shumway, Administrative Assistant.


Minutes: Minutes of the March 2020 meeting were reviewed. A motion to approve the minutes was made by Charlie Messina, seconded by Al Quimby, and the motion carried.


Treasurers Report (Tim Gooch): Tim Gooch reviewed the 2020 Year to Date Report. The Chamber is operating a little behind the usual for this time of year, due to the economic slowdown. We are in unknown territory but will remain cautiously optimistic. An opportunity for questions or clarifications was given with no response. A motion to accept the report was made by Charlie Messina, seconded by Mike Charles, and carried.


Committee Reports:

Chamber Administrative Report (Julie VanNess): The Chamber of Commerce office is open. The door remains locked due to social distancing, but Julie’s cell number is posted on the front door. You can also email Julie or call the office to notify us you will be coming. Julie reminded the group she can be reached by email any time. She reported she has increased activity using social media and the Chamber of Commerce Face Book page activity has increased a great deal. Julie has also been contacting businesses gathering information they would like advertised. Information is also being forwarded to Mountain Home to be included in the Wellsboro Happenings publication. The University of Scranton Small Business Development Center is offering Q&A Live Video Online Group Sessions with consultants Tuesdays from 10 to 11 am and Thursdays from 1 to 2 pm. Julie will send contact information via email to members.

Laurel Festival (Julie VanNess): We are currently moving ahead with Laurel Festival planning and preparation at this time. The Children’s Health Fair and Pet Parade have been postponed and will be rescheduled.

STPR (Julie VanNess): STPR is still planning to be held in September, if possible. At this time State Forestry permits are not being accepted. The Chamber, however, has received 3 permits from PENNDOT.

Tourism and Retail (Charlie Messina): Chamber Mixer and Wine 101 will be rescheduled. Wine Glass Class has a tentative date of September 12th. More information will be provided at a later date. Julie VanNess commented, small businesses are the backbone of the community. They have supported many groups, fundraisers, etc. for years. Now is the time to give back and support them.


Wellsboro Borough (Julie VanNess): The annual pool maintenance has begun as if the pool will open, and street projects that are funded by Liquid Fuel Funds are still scheduled to occur. Late fees for the water/sewer/garbage bills will not be assessed for the remainder of 2020 (this does not affect those charges assessed before the COVID19. It’s too early to tell what the affect the COVID-19 shutdown will have on the borough’s budget – we are assuming all of our funding sources will be affected and we are watching all spending very closely. Reminder that the in-person tax collection days scheduled for later this week are cancelled and the county is working on extending the real estate property tax deadline so we will spread the word once a final decision is made by the County Board of Assessment Revision. Since school buses are no longer running, PennDOT is looking at moving up the scheduled box culvert replacement on Route 6 west, next to Darrow’s Motor Company. This project will completely close Route 6 for the duration of the project, currently scheduled to last 10-14 days. The Borough Office does not have a date yet.

HARB Committee Report (Terry Bryant): No report


GROW Report (Shawn Bryant): G&W Railroad is currently not running. There is a possibility of re-opening the third weekend of June for the excursion train. This will depend on regulations regarding safe group numbers and social distancing. The golf course will be open this coming Friday, May 1st. There will be special procedures in place to limit and/or avoid physical contact with staff. It is recommended that golfers call ahead for tee times and any other requests for the pro-shop.

Other exempt Organization Updates:

Green Free Library (Leslie Wishard): All county libraries are still closed to the public. It will probably be several more weeks due to time needed to disinfect any returned books. Any book holds have been stopped and fines have been waved. They are currently re-evaluating Summer Programs. There is a possibility of eventually providing curbside service. Visit the website for online story time and numerous resources. If you do not have a library card please contact staff via Facebook messenger. It is still possible to download audio and e-books.

DCNR (Tim Morey): PA State Parks will remain closed until May 8. Many people have been using the trails for walking and hiking. Be sure to keep social distance and wear masks as needed while on the trails.

Guthrie Health (Terri Hepp): Nearly all Guthrie Health Centers are now open. Waiting Rooms are not being used. Patients must call the office to register when they arrive in the parking lot. They are instructed to wait in their car until they receive a phone call from a nurse telling them to enter the building. Upon entrance, patients are escorted directly to the examination room or lab.

Nessmuk Rod & Gun Club (Charlie Messina): May meeting has been cancelled. When able to reopen, masks will be required for indoor shooting.

Trehab/Career Link (Ashley Frost): The office is closed to the public. Contact them via Facebook. They have a COVID-19 Job Portal. Visit for more information. Summer Intern Program is still happening.

Motion to adjourn was made by Tim Gooch seconded by Kevin Thomas and carried.


Next Chamber meeting will be held on May 26, 2020 at the Penn Wells Hotel, at noon.

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