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Business Advisory Board

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The Business Advisory Board convened from September 2009 to October 2011 and is no longer active.

On June 1, 2009, Council reviewed a draft of the Business Task Force (BTF) report and recommendations. One of the primary recommendations was the establishment of a City appointed Business Advisory Board (BAB).

Mission
To advise the City Council on economic development issues and other business related issues with the overall objective of encouraging a healthy, vibrant business community in Mill Valley with an appropriate mix of resident serving businesses, while also preserving the City's unique small-town character.

Scope

  • Review the revised BTF report that includes the staff analysis
  • Oversee the implementation of recommendations from the BTF report
  • Oversee execution of local and regional marketing campaigns involving City funds and/or city-generated funds from business
  • Review funding options and develop an economic development plan for the city both near term and long term 
  • Select consulting firms, if needed, to support economic programs sponsored by the City of Mill Valley 
  • Monitor and measure the results of economic development programs 
  • Regularly report to the City Council on BAB activities

On September 8, 2009, the City Council approved a revised BTF report, including the creation of a Business Advisory Board (BAB) subject to the Brown Act. The City approved the proposed composition and members of the initial Board, representing all four business districts in Mill Valley as well as the Chamber of Commerce and “at large” business experts, and authorized the City Manager to make appointments for the positions still vacant. The Council also gave the Business Advisory Board Chair latitude to build BAB consensus around a distilled mission, scope of work and governance procedures. The Council asked the Board Chair to make quarterly reports to the Council.

On October 20, 2009, at its first meeting, the Business Advisory Board (BAB) embraced a simple, compelling mission: to revitalize Mill Valley’s economy. It further agreed, as a strategic advisory group, to make progress in four areas drawing on the findings of the BTF Report: (1) streamline City processes, (2) launch a marketing initiative that encourages residents to spend more time and money in Mill Valley, (3) beta test parking solutions and (4) create a long term economic vitality plan for Mill Valley. The BAB also committed to communicate to the City Manager search committee the importance of economic vitality issues to the preservation of Mill Valley’s small town character. Finally, the BAB agreed to organize around one vote per member and a five member quorum and unanimously voted to “sunset” within two years, to both maintain urgency and empower other agencies, such as the City, Chamber and business community to own and carry on the work of economic development/vitality over the longer term.

Members:
Paula Reynolds, Chair            Paolo Petrone
Ann Aversa Christopher Raker            
Dori Beron Jim Revoir
Doug Canepa Ryan Rilette
Elaine Cramer Den Satake
Betsey Cutler Ellen Seebold
Liana Orlandi .

The Business Advisory Board Chair, Paula Reynolds, delivered a Final Report to the City Council on January 17, 2012, highlighting the BAB's successes:

  • Encouraging the City to hire a City Manager committed to partnering with the business community;
  • Developing a comprehensive and still very relevant Marketing Strategy for Mill Valley "94941" based on engaging and targeting “communities of interest” to spend time and money in our community;
  • Executing five key marketing programs with City financial support including the “Dipsea Deals”, the MVFAF public art and raffle, the RSVP Parking sticker program, a Library Foundation partnership with the local business community; and two social media sites “Enjoy Mill Valley” and “Mill Valley Food, Drink and Hospitality”;
  • Promoting streamlined processes for business and regulatory changes at City Hall;
  • Developing a succession strategy with “Chamber 2.0” drawing on our two years of work and an October, 2011 Business Focus Group Report (attached) that highlighted three near term unmet needs in the business community: advocacy, beautification and marketing programs.

The BAB leaves a rich legacy of marketing strategy and programs, of relationships with the City, and recommendations to streamline and improve policies and programs. 

Documents
Meeting agendas and minutes can be found in the calendar.  Please click on "View Past Events" to see the calendar of past meetings.  Other documents are listed below:

Business Advisory Board Memo, City Council Packet, September 8, 2009
Business Task Force Final Report, October 19, 2009
Downtown Parking Study 
Business Advisory Board Quarterly Report, February 1, 2010
Business Advisory Board Quarterly Report, April 23, 2010
Parking PowerPoint Presentation July 14, 2010
Parking Memo Oct 2011
Chamber of Commerce 2.0 
Enjoy Mill Valley Final Report
Mill Valley Business Advisory Board Focus Group Summary
BAB Final Report

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