Posted tagged ‘MPA Convention’

Missouri had good representation at National Convention

October 28, 2008

This is the time of year that things settle down a little bit for your President. With the annual MPA and
National Newspaper Association conventions out of the way, there is a little time available for looking after my primary project, my regular day job.
Speaking of NNA, Missouri was well represented with more than a dozen attendees in St. Paul, Minn. Programs were well organized and timely, entertainment was appropriate and well planned.
It was a great time for everyone in attendance, and much was learned by all, including how to make a perfect omelet in less than one minute. Attendance was down a little this year, a reflection, I’m certain, of the economy as a whole. But attendance was still good. If you have never attended an NNA conference, I would
strongly recommend that you make the effort.
In challenging times like we face today, it benefits everyone in the industry to take advantage of any idea sharing or training opportunities that will improve our skills or those of our staffs. Certainly MPA offers many opportunities to learn and provides resources to assist every member on the road to success.
A prime example of MPA’s efforts to assist members is in the new “Know It. All.” newspaper campaign. This series of ads was developed through MPA, with consultation from Strategists, LLC, and is a promotional campaign that focuses on the value that local newspapers bring to their readers.
The promotion launched Oct. 1 for Missouri newspapers and is provided at no charge to MPA members. MPA encourages all of its member newspapers to download the material and use as much of it as they can.
Because the initial response was so positive, the MPA office began getting inquiries from other state press associations and newspapers. They were asking if they could use the materials in their own campaigns.
After conferring with the MPA Board of Directors, the staff at MPA has announced that the campaign will now
be made available to all state, regional and national press associations and their members.
We did not develop this program to generate revenue.
Rather, like so many programs offered by MPA, it was made available to all at no charge.
I invite you to go to the Missouri Press website and view the promotion. Ads are in template form so newspapers can customize the content to localize the message.
The first flight consists of eight ads, each designed with a different target, season or approach. Some of the ads focus on the news and information aspects of newspapers. Others focus more on the advertising
and value aspects of them. All are presented in two sizes and in color and black and white.
I think you will find this a most worthwhile program.

Please get Convention Hotel Reservation NOW!

April 8, 2008

PLEASE. Do not delay. If you plan to attend the MPA Convention in September, make your hotel reservation now. Columbia is going to be crowded, and if you delay, you won’t get a room.
MPA’s Convention will be Thursday-Saturday, Sept. 11-13. It will run concurrently with the Missouri School of Journalism’s Centennial Celebration, which will be Wednesday-Friday, Sept. 10-12.
The School of Journalism is expecting a few thousand people to attend its celebration. Adding to that number of people in Columbia will be fans in town for the Mizzou football game against Nevada on Saturday, Sept. 13.
MPA will hold its Convention at Stoney Creek Inn, which is on Providence Road about a mile south of the football stadium. Call the hotel at (800) 659-2220 to reserve a room in the Missouri Press Association room block. The rate is $75.
Call NOW, and reserve your room.

Sunshine, shield on legislative agenda

December 13, 2007

Revenue Dept. rules newspapers should not have to pay taxes on delivery costs 

By MPA President David Bradley
St. Joseph News-Press
My term as president of Missouri Press Association has passed by in a flash. Yes, the official duties took a little time, but the enjoyment of carrying them out far outweighed the work.
The MPA staff has done a great job of keeping me on task. The group, particularly event director Kristie Williams, made the annual MPA Convention in St. Louis the highlight of my year. Next year’s convention in Columbia will be huge joining with the 100th anniversary celebration of the Missouri School of Journalism.
Jack Whitaker of Hannibal will fill the presidential role in January. Jack has been on the
MPA Board for several years and helped push our state’s newspaper industry into the digital age. He has also built a financially viable community website and, at the same time, increased his print circulation. That’s impressive.
In November, University of Missouri Interim President Gordon Lamb hosted an MPA luncheon at the president’s residence on the Columbia campus. Dr. Lamb presented a $38 million proposal to increase the number of health care professionals for Missouri. He said the state is facing a growing shortage of pharmacists, nurses, dentists and doctors in rural and low-income urban areas.
Dr. Lamb said all Missouri colleges and universities are working together to come up with a funding formula for the schools. He is going on a statewide “University Unity
Tour” with other higher education institutions to make their case for funding from the legislature.
The MPA is also gearing up for some important legislative initiatives in 2008. With the help of MPA counselor Jean Maneke, we will try to button up some loopholes in
Missouri’s Sunshine Law. We also will try again to push through a Free Flow of Information bill, known as a shield law, to protect reporters and editors (and their sources) who are investigating misdeeds.
Also in Jefferson City, the Missouri Department of Revenue issued a private letter ruling that could provide many Missouri newspapers relief on their sales tax burden. The letter,
issued to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, ruled that the newspaper shouldn’t have to pay sales tax on its delivery costs to newspaper customers.
MPA played an important role in facilitating face-to-face meetings between the department and publishers from the Post-Dispatch and The Kansas City Star.
Before you stop paying this tax, you will need a departmental ruling addressed to your own newspaper. But at least the template has been created for your paper to qualify for such an exemption.
On another matter, your MPA Board reluctantly approved a 25 percent dues increase
for 2008 to fund a statewide newspaper website for public notices and other legal advertising. We hope to reassure legislators that Missouri newspapers will make sure this type of advertising adequately reaches the public in print and online. This is the
first dues increase since 2001.
We were surprised to hear that Gary and Helen Sosniecki have sold The Vandalia Leader and are taking time off for a well-deserved rest. They have been superb MPA board members, and Gary headed the association in 2004. Gary assures me that they will be back after the first of the year looking for newspaper work. “And if we can’t find anything, we may be buying a paper,” he hinted.
Finally, we were glad to see one positive article about our industry in the Oct. 29 issue of Advertising Age headlined “Stop writing those obituaries for the newspaper industry.” Marc Brownstein of the Brownstein Group in Philadelphia said that “innovation and a keen sense of competition will win the day for newspapers.”
MPA knows that is top priority, too. So keep telling us how we can help.