Quarterly Meeting of the State Committee of Vendors

Friday June 10, 2022

Chairman, James Warth Called the meeting to order at 8:15 AM.  Vice Chairman, Terri Lindstrom called the role.

The following individuals were present: 
James Warth, Chairman
Terri Lindstrom, Vice Chairman

District Representatives: Kurt Ponchak, District 1; Colton Knight, District 2; Mitzi Bowen, District 3; Randall Crosby, District Four; David Stevens, District 5; Phil Hubbard, District 6; T.J. McCormick, District 7; Sead Bekric, District 8; Alternate, Ed Spence, District 9; Daniel Ochoa, District 10.

Bureau of Business Enterprise Staff: Bill Findley Bureau Chief; Maureen Fink, Operations Manager; Alan Risk, Compliance Officer; John Ahler, Business Analyst; Greg Coon, Marketing and Site Development Manager; Brian Ashworth, Region 1 Business Consultant; Bernie Kaiserian, Region 2 Business Consultant, Jay Payne, Region 3 Business Consultant; Anthony Arduengo, Region 4 Business Consultant; Janet Chernoff, Administrative Services Consultant; Mary Ellen Harding, Administrative Assistant, Steve Moss, BEP Instructor; Angela Elgaard, BEP Trainer. 

Licensed Vendors: Alton Palmore, District 1 Alternate, Kash Ahmed, District 2 Alternate, Jose Quintanilla, District 7 Alternate; Patrick Martin, District 2.

Division of Blind Services: Robert Doyle, Director

Guests: Wylan Wey, Patty Hubbard, Kevin Hershey of Alliant Coffee Solutions, Benn Wilcox of DeliverLean, and trainees Orly Shamir and Israel Davila.

Welcome, Adoption of Agenda and Approval of Minutes – Jim Warth
Kurt Ponchak made a motion to adopt the agenda.  Seconded by Phil Hubbard.  Passed without objection.  Janet Chernoff read a synopsis of the previous meeting minutes in rhyme.  The full minutes were emailed to all members prior to the meeting.  Motion that minutes be approved were unanimously accepted.

BEP Updates – Bill Findley
Today is a big day because Janet Chernoff is retiring. Celebration dinner tonight.

Staff Updates:  We are recommending someone from the Miami District Office for the Region 6 consultant position.  In Sunrise, Region 5, we interviewed 2 people, made no recommendation and will readvertise.  At the Daytona Rehab Center we have been without 2 staff positions for a year and a half.  We have made recommendations for 2 individuals.  The teaching position applicant has been at the Braille Talking Library.  The vending specialist position is from outside the agency.  Prior to the pandemic we requested an OPS position for Region 1.  We are very excited about the candidate we have recommended for that position.  Mary Ellen Harding has been recommended for Janet’s position. 

RSA and GSA Meetings:  A few years ago the GSA wanted to revamp the way we applied for buildings. It was, in many ways, in direct conflict with regulations.  Was asked to participate in meetings with RSA leaders to discuss the new permitting regulations.  We are now pleased with the permitting process.  Terry Smith and Nicki Gacos of NABM are helping with some problems we are currently having with GSA.  We have had some good meetings with GSA and RSA.  There is a building in Orlando that is problematic.  They shut us out of the planning process with the building and now there are problems with where to put the machines and storage.

Bay Pines – We were contacted about a vending machine that needed to be removed and another machine that was leaking by Mr. Ideas.  Tom Castillo of Coke helped to get both taken care of.  Bay Pines asked for a Teams meeting this week with their deputy director and it was a good meeting.  Tony and Greg are going to contact the people at Bay Pines to set up a tour with their property manager and the person in charge of the community-based clinics.  

FDOT:  Rest Area Safety – Chuck Deas and his helper were assaulted and threatened at the I-75 NB rest area in Lake City in April. Mr. Deas has provided DBS with police reports.  Bill was contacted by Rudy Powell and talked with him.  DOT is going to allow Chuck to set up cameras for a period of time.  DBS and FDOT are looking at a global solution.  FDOT doesn’t want to be responsible for the video material.  Our vendors believe FDOT security is inadequate.  After July 4th, meetings will be scheduled with FDOT for a global solution.

Director Doyle met with people at FDOT regarding Electric Vehicle Charging Stations.  DOT has developed an electric charging station plan.  In that conversation they suggested that DBS had “the golden ticket”.  However, there are a lot of moving parts.  There will be a follow-up meeting after July 4th.  One question yet to be answered is how is revenue generated? Installing the stations is very expensive since the cost is around $100,000 – $200,000 each.  Charging cost to the car owner is around $16-$17 per charge.  Fast mode can charge in 30 minutes.  Long range planning is needed.  Charging stations are considered vending machines by some.  Private companies may want to participate in the commercial endeavors at rest areas and that is a concern.  The only way commercial companies could get involved would require new legislation.  There are a lot of unanswered questions with regards to money and responsibility. 

Legal Issues:  There are new people at DOE from the Commissioner down, including the Legal department.  We will need to exercise patience for the future.

Budget Report – Kurt Ponchak
The budget looks good. Bill’s email suggested we may need to increase our spending authority.  May set-aside paid of nearly $58K may be a record for revenue. With changes in the economy we will be seeing significant increases in expenses.  We may want to consider getting legislative budget authority increases to raise Set-Aside because of increased costs.  There is some opportunity for the agency to make some transfers to match federal dollars.  Recommending $1 million increase for the Trust Fund and $300K additional for Grants Trust Fund (Set-aside acct).  There should be a future discussion on submitting a request to RSA to allow for an increase in the set-aside percentage collected which would allow the program greater flexibility in the future. This would not mean that vendors will have an immediate increase, but it does provide the future flexibility if needed.

Statewide Update – Robert Doyle, Director
We have new leadership in the Department. Commissioner Manny Diaz Jr. has a good history in the classroom and worked in the legislature getting bills passed to benefit education. Overall, the Commissioner left most leadership intact.  One change was the General Counsel, Anastasios Kamoutsas is now Chief of Staff for the department. As primary council for the Division, we have Nicole Saunders and Gavin Dunn who reports to Nicole.  Gavin will eventually be moving on. The Governor vetoed $3.1 billion in spending. This is an historic level of vetoes. DBS is fortunate to survive to have a budget that provides our essential services.  Increases include a $15 minimum wage for staff and a 5.38% general across the board increase.  Recruiting has been difficult.  The Division lost its Personnel Director. Megan Martin in Daytona has been helping out with personnel packets.  We are very grateful for salary increases and continue to explore what we can do with regard to reclassification of positions. Have been in discussions with Brent McNeil at Vocational Rehabilitation about doing increases internally within DOE and Management Services. This may result in a second step to the Legislature.  Merit increases are off the table right now.

How can we do more marketing?  Considered a new logo or videos. We don’t anticipate a new logo.  We are looking at ways to increase marketing and are working with Moore Communications on campaigns such as, “Get There and Get There Faster”.  We’re looking to include our employment campaigns.  Also looking at having BEP as part of the marketing plan including digital media and flyers.  Interested in college and universities for vending and food services and recruiting.  We are expecting an update to contract with Moore by the end of the month and are interested in a market outreach for this program. 

Rehabilitation Center:  We are still recruiting at the Center.  We have identified a new name which needs to be approved: Career Technology and Training Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired.  Hoping to get a new Bureau Chief for the Center at some point.  Had an interview with someone from NJ and have another interview in July with him.  Continuing to recruit for the Center and the Braille & Talking Book Library.  The Call Center training program is still developing.  The library needs a new shelving system. Estimated costs are $600K.  We may need to use the Legislative process.  Manual push shelving may also be an option.  Looking at a new system to allow several books on one cartridge and working toward increasing usership at the library.  There is currently a summer reading program going on.  We were a sponsor this year for Cooking without Looking and held an event at the Center.  Cooking without Looking was videoed and we will be marketing the cooking show and distributing it on the internet. 

We don’t want to lose food service kitchens. Some kitchens could service micro markets around the state preparing quality food.  Kitchens supplying micro markets is a good idea which would generate revenue for both the blind person and the program. 

We have been trying to get in with Amazon.  It’s a process.  They have an office to specifically focus on employing people with visual disabilities. 

RSVA – Colton Knight and Randall Crosby
Woody Mathews and Colton tried to renew interest in RSVA and have done some fund raising.  This group recently gave $1,000 scholarship for two individuals at the FL School of the Deaf and Blind.  We would now like to address what our vision and goals will be.  Appreciative of support from the Committee Chair and everyone.  Randall nominated David Stevens as a board member. 

Randall thanked Colton and Patrick Martin for their participation in the program.  RSVA is asking for donations for the RSVA Walk. Wylan Wey has been working with them and is looking forward to joining the program.  They have been paying for his housing as part of an internship which he just completed.  Wylan Wey is from Ft. Myers and he was able to experience the vending program from the inside out.  As soon as he finishes his AA degree he plans on entering the program.

DeliverLean - Benn Wilcox
DeliverLean provided a large variety of food samples for our micro markets to all attendees.  One of the hardest challenges for micro markets is getting good quality prepacked food.  They currently work with theme parks, Universities and State offices.  All their grab and go food has a 5-day shelf life.  DeliverLean works in a 65K square foot, FDA approved facility with 400 employees and they deliver their product in refrigerated trucks.  They will be doing MAT packaging for heat and serve bowls which are vacuum sealed and have a longer shelf life.  MAT bowls will be available in a week or two.  Turnaround time on orders is 48 hours.  Minimum order is $500 – $1,000.  Currently Patrick Martin, Colton Knight and Jason Carpenter worked a cooperative agreement to order the minimum amount.  

Alliant Coffee Solutions – Kevin Hershey
Alliant Coffee is a one stop shop for coffee and related needs. Alliant Representative Kevin Hershey gave out sample bags of coffee and promotional flyers in braille The company believes in taking care of the planet. They have K-cups, wood stir sticks, Wolfgang Puck coffee, cups, powder, and any coffee related products. There is no minimum order, but to get free freight you will need to order 10 cases of product.  Kevin believes their pricing is competitive and will provide pricing via email.  Paper cups come in 10, 12 or 16 oz. sizes. Coffee comes in medium roast, dark roast and decaf blends.  One lid will fit all cup sizes. Orders come out of Jacksonville and they will drop ship. All roasted product comes from Toronto, Canada. All products have a 24-month shelf life including their powders. 

Daytona Training Report – Angela Elgaard
Orly Shamir and Israel Davila, current trainees since April, were in attendance. They both have completed Angela’s class, did very well and are moving on to Steve Moss’ class now.  Both have previous food service experience.

Bill Findley stated that the Division has been working with counselors at district offices.  Our consultants have been scheduling visits with the district office counselors and leadership toured micro markets, vending and food service facilities in the respective areas.  Maureen Fink, Brian Ashworth and Bernie Kaiserian have all participated in this recruiting effort.  Counselors were impressed with the BEP program and gained a better understanding of what we do.  Maureen and Bill invited committee members to also refer people to the program. 

Chairman’s Updates, Projects and Concerns – Jim Warth
Jim’s concerns are being met by all the Committee members and subcommittees. 

Colton Knight – There have been a handful of things happening with micro markets.  Colton has been having communication with Cantaloupe/Seed.  Sead Bekric has Seed’s Cashless Plus and Colton has had Cashless Plus for a few years.  Seed and Seed Live (a platform used to run reports) have some accessibility problems.  3 Square Market’s website is inaccessible for a total blind operator.  3 Square has made promises about a beta website but it has not materialized.  Before we buy machines, we should establish a work group and ask companies for an opportunity to test products before we make purchases. 3 Square is having a conference in Wisconsin in August where they will demonstrate the accessibility of their product.  It has been recommended that Chris Ingram, Kurk Johnson, Bill, Colton, Sead, Brian and Patrick have a phone call and talk about the problems with the product.  Does Microsoft reader work with the product?  Colton has not tried Microsoft.  Downloading to an Excel spreadsheet is not a workable solution.  Vispero, will write scripts for programs to make them accessible.  Quickbooks and Microsoft both have new disability programs that work with a narrator. 

We need to make it clear to companies what accessibility tools are needed, which is also required by ADA Title III. Cantaloupe has stated that if they are required to make it accessible, their legal department needs to tell them to make it accessible.  Our service contract comes up for renewal at the end of the year.  It is important that we have a conversation with them expressing the legal requirements.  Nayax needs to register in MFMP. Brian Ashworth has sent them the info. Cashless Plus has a free 60-day promotion. Vispero could possibly make kiosks more accessible for operators.  Adam Gaffney should be involved in talks with Kurk Johnson.  The reason we left Parlevel and went to 3 Square is because they would not work with us on accessibility. 

Subcommittees – Kurt Ponchak
Finance, Audit and Budgeting

Requested data has been received and is being reviewed. Subcommittee is working on a document to provide facility costs to find out what it costs to manage a facility from the agency standpoint.  Also looking at how much revenue each facility generates, not only with set-aside but also using the match formula (state share).  Eventually will be looking at reimbursements and may be asking for the age of the machines.  Looking at ROI and hoping to have something substantial completed by December.  At our last meeting, it was mentioned that we should work on an RFP for the card reader system. The contract we have is for fees, not other issues we have with the readers. Would like to help write technical specifications for RFPs. 

A request for an agenda item to be added regarding set-aside. A motion was made to develop a plan to be brought back to this committee to request an increase for the amount of set-aside.  Seconded by Phil Hubbard.  Discussion about the motion.  A voice vote passed unanimously.

Net profit expectation is currently being monitored by Maureen and there are only a few individuals that are not meeting the requirement but are in situations beyond the operator’s control and are understandable. 

Policies and Procedures Committee  
Committee spent time on product dates, best by dates, etc.  Currently no recommendation as the manual addresses these products.  The Agency owns the inventory and products will not be reimbursed if out-of-date.  Looking at the policy manual, section by section, and currently working on sections 1-3.  Next week there will be a joint meeting with three subcommittees. 

One member brought up throwing out the lowest and highest scores on the interview process.  The Committee recommended not supporting that suggestion.  A motion was made to reject the suggestion of throwing out high and low scores on selection interview process.  Seconded by Randall Crosby.  The vote passed unanimously.

The subcommittee will be receiving documents, with over 100 amendments, to make changes to the manual and bylaws.  Bylaws can only be changed by the body of operators. All operators get to vote on the changes to the bylaws and requires a 2/3 vote.

Training, Retraining and Upward Mobility
The subcommittee had their initial meeting Wednesday, June 8.  Valerie James will be the chair of the subcommittee. Next meeting will be July 18th.  The Biennial planning will be one of the tasks of the committee.

Public Relations Subcommittee
Janet Chernoff spoke on behalf of Tammy Spain. Tammy requested confirmation from the Committee to go forward with what she is doing. She wants to create a logo and video to promote the program to applicants and create a website for vendors. Is there a cost projection?  Tammy has been working with Director Doyle’s Office. They will look at cost projections and are working with External Affairs Committee and an outside group mentioned earlier. 

A motion made by Kurt Ponchak and seconded by Randall Crosby to accept her request to continue her work.  No objections. The motion was accepted.

Type II Update – Maureen Fink
There are currently 22 Type II facilities, one is on the May selection. Facility 608 will be on the September selection and waiting to see on the others. For some, sales are low due to COVID and still trying to determine viability.   

Marketing and Site Development – Greg Coon
FY21-22 YTD: 38 surveys completed through Feb 2022. 




We will reach out to the Corporate Planning Office to see where we are with the VA.

Business Analyst – John Ahler
Cantaloupe is willing to do some basic training with operators and have reached out to our Business Analyst. Next week we will reach out to them for dates and try to arrange the trainings in small groups.  Will provide good CEU opportunities for vendors.  Need to schedule another meeting in another month or so.  Arron Schram is our dedicated service person. 

We are down to only about 50 G9’s in the system now.  We should have all G10’s by the end of year.  Have about 360 swipers that still need to be swapped out.  Colton and Bernie have all machines labeled with address, etc.  Maureen has done some.  Ponchak asked about the cost of the change outs.  Staff agreed we don’t have a total at this time but it is the cost of doing business.   

Revenues:  It looks like by the end of the federal fiscal year ending on September 30, 2022, revenues have returned to almost pre-pandemic levels.  Estimated revenues should be around $22.5 million for the federal fiscal year.  In the previous federal fiscal year for the time period October 1, 2020, to March 31, 2021, (first and second quarter) revenues reported were $7.3 million.  This year’s first and second quarter revenues have been reported at $10.1 million, which is very near pre-pandemic numbers.  Gross Profits to the Operator were $3.9 million for first two quarters of FFY 2020/2021 and this year’s Gross Profits have exceeded $5.6 million, representing a 28% increase.  Labor costs reported pre-pandemic were $1.8 million for the period October 1, 2020, to March 31, 2021, but this year’s labor costs for the same time period are at only $1.3 million.  Median vendor earnings projected for this year are almost $67K per vendor.  Two years ago it was $63K, but last year was only $48K.  Increased prices and efficiencies have increased revenues.  Some vendors are charging above market prices for their products and it might be a good idea to survey prices for interstate vending. 

Compliance Officer Report – Alan Risk
There has been 1 new licensee since the March 2022 Committee meeting.  Leroy Roberts was licensed on June 1, 2022, and is the only new vendor licensed thus far in 2022.

Grievance Hearing:  The Division has not received any requests for a grievance hearing since the March 2022 Committee Meeting. Thus, no grievance hearings have been held so far in 2022.

Selection Cycle Update:  2 facilities were advertised, a non-highway vending route at Jacksonville N.A.S. and a non-highway vending facility at Customs and Border Patrol at Miami International Airport. 10 applicants are scheduled to take the Selection Cycle exam on June 15, 2022.  Interviews will be conducted July 11-12, 2022, at the Tampa DBS office.

CEU Report:  We are a little behind because we didn’t have a biennial.  To be on pace to get 3 CEUs by August 2023 vendors should have 1.25 CEUs by now.  Of 115 vendors who are required to get CEUs; 60 are on pace, and 21 vendors, as of this week, with zero CEUs.  The good news is over 25% or 29 of our vendors have already exceeded the requirements.  There will be events coming up that will give an opportunity to earn CEUs.  District reps should encourage operators to work on their CEUs if they are falling behind.  Reminder notices are sent out to operators starting 12 months out with increasing regularity of the need to fulfill their CEU requirement.  Our website has a link to the NRTC, Mississippi State College, where they have the Randolph-Shepard courses.  18 courses are offered that take about an hour and earn ¼ credit per course.  So, they can get all 3 CEUs there and also take additional courses that will carry over to the next year.  Operators cannot take courses more than once for CEU credit.  Bill Findley announced we will be holding Roadshow workshops. 

RFP:  We only got 1 response on the request for proposals to buy vending machines.  Crane and AMS were awarded the last contract but didn’t bid on this contract.  We have a panel made up of SLA members and vendors, including one totally blind.  We are getting feedback and will have a Teams meeting on the proposal next Tuesday afternoon with all the evaluation teams members.  We can’t share with anyone what the proposal is until the Agency makes a decision whether to accept or not and then it becomes public record.  Kurt Ponchak questioned if meeting of RFP committee needed to be in the Sunshine. Alan will check with Regina Register to verify if meeting needs to be in the Sunshine.

We will be holding a Teams meeting where the machines can be demonstrated and they can show some of the functions, components and capabilities of the machines.  Then we can get responses from evaluation panel and agency can make a decision whether we want to rebid the whole proposal, accept some of the proposal, or accept the whole proposal.  Operators would like someone to test the machines before a decision is made.  There is a totally blind vendor on the panel, Will Grignon, who has been very valuable in that role. 
Regarding speech modules, there was a discussion on whether or not U-Select-It was required to make their vending machines ADA compliant for blind operators. A question was asked on whether authorization might be possible for vendors to travel and view the machines in person. Greg Coon brought up the fact that we are already using one of USI’s machines in our Program. Alan Risk confirmed that our Alpine frozen machine was a USI product. Alan also stated that no decision on awarding a contract would be made unless the agency and the committee both are comfortable with the machines.

Region 2 – Bernie Kaiserian
Update on Wellborn rest areas, 424 & 425. There is no update on construction at this time.  Last contact said due to extraneous circumstances, they could be open end of October or the first of next year. DOT shut down two rest areas in 517 & 518 for a flooring project the first part of May.  Had to pull all machines out.  We discovered two weeks later all the plumbing fixtures were removed from the facility.  Randall and Terri’s rest area has porta-potties and is affecting business.  Vending route news:  Natasha @ 590 lost hanger machines at Cecil Field but gained a post office at Ponta Vedra.  Trying to reallocate.  No real losses just a reallocation of machines. Josh Kimrey losing a tax office on his route.  For the year through April, the region is up 25% in sales and 32% in profits with over $400,000 in sales.  Credit card readers:  70 machines were doing $100 or less. 38% of all sales are by cash so the program is doing 62% credit cards through the first four months of the year. 

District 3 - Mitzi Bowen – Everyone happy.

District 4 - Randall Crosby – Everyone is doing well in the district no problems. 

Region 3 – Jay Payne
Pending installs, VA in Kissimmee after July 1st. Facility 586, Lake Baldwin Nursing home, we are waiting the go ahead from the building.  Also on Kash’s route we downsized some snack machines.  Planning to change card readers at Kennedy Space Center.  Removed counters for vending space at the KSC LCC snack bar and are looking at the potential of a micro market.  At #403, Sandra Marecki is out on medical leave, vending only for now.  In the Orlando office we are going to have a meeting with all the counselors to promote the program. 

District 5 - David Stevens – Nothing to report

District 6 - Phil Hubbard – Kinesha Cole is dealing with a matter with the City of Deltona. She started with prices higher than what she said she would when proposal was made.  Recommendation was to wait a year and then talk with facility about increases. Should work out okay.

Adjourned at 5:01 pm
Motion to adjourn by Warth, seconded by T.J. McCormick

Saturday, June 11, 2022

Chairman, James Warth Called the meeting to order at 8:30 AM.  Vice Chairman, Terri Lindstrom called the role.

The following individuals were present: 
James Warth, Chairman
Terri Lindstrom, Vice Chairman

District Representatives:  Kurt Ponchak, District 1; Colton Knight, District 2; Mitzi Bowen, District 3; Randall Crosby, District Four; David Stevens, District 5; Phil Hubbard, District 6; T.J. McCormick, District 7; Sead Bekric, District 8; Alternate, Ed Spence, District 9; Daniel Ochoa, District 10.

Bureau of Business Enterprise Staff:  Bill Findley Bureau Chief; Maureen Fink, Operations Manager; Alan Risk, Compliance Officer; John Ahler, Business Analyst; Brian Ashworth, Region 1 Business Consultant; Anthony Arduengo, Region 4 Business Consultant; Janet Chernoff, Administrative Services Consultant; Mary Ellen Harding, Administrative Assistant. 

Licensed Vendors:  Alton Palmore, District 1 Alternate, Kash Ahmed, District 2 Alternate, Jose Quintanilla, District 7 Alternate; Patrick Martin, District 2.

Region 1 – Brian Ashworth
273, Wayne Mercer is running the Collins Building cafeteria. I took him on a tour of the Caldwell Building vending in order to see if he wanted to service them and add some revenue to his bottom line.  He has agreed to take it.  This will alleviate some of the strain to Tony DaGraca who has been servicing it. 98% of G-9 card readers are swapped out. There are a couple of stragglers in the outlying areas.  Steve Docie will have a medical procedure on Monday. All markets in Tallahassee found a new food supplier.  Patrick Martin’s market is doing well, over $10K in his first month.  Patrick will be getting a list of conferences going on in the Betty Easley Center and will be able to provide lunch boxes for meetings.  Prison facilities:  Lourena Pilgrim, facility 534, is out on medical leave and Emmett Magee is running the facility.  The Bureau of Prisons, FCI Pensacola, opened for a little bit and then shut back down because they are using the visitation wing as a COVID isolation ward.  Findley:  Lourena Pilgrim plans to come back once the prison reopens.  Also, Wanda Feldsteen is also doing well at Hurlburt. 

District 2 – Colton Knight – Good things have been going on with the grab and go food.  All the micro markets vendors have been working together to make sure we get our orders in timely and get the food distributed to all the markets.  Requesting open air coolers for grab and go food.  Jason wants to upgrade his kiosk, one is down.  Has had issues with kiosks.  Also, was curious to see how Wayne is doing and if there is a plan to convert to a micro market.  Ashworth stated that Wayne is comfortable with what he has.  DMS shuts the air off over the weekends.  Requests have been made to keep it on but there are still issues.  At Patrick’s location the air stays on all the time.  An open-air cooler is not as versatile.  Jason wants to go down to two kiosks.  Leadership will need to be consulted before a decision is made.  Some vendors want to go cashless.  3 Square will not give pennies back in change.  Asks for your email to send you the change. 

District 1 – Kurt Ponchak – Thanked Alan for helping him out.  All Coca-Cola United customers with be having a ½ day CEU event.  Part of the training will be breakout sessions with operators.  Will break down into two groups, office and transportation, and talk about what’s happening on the routes, etc.  We will use some of their market research.  YTD our area was at 41% of purchasing Coke products.  Buffalo Rock will not repair third party equipment anymore.  There is one operator discouraged about the agency telling him how to price things.  There are three vendors who would prefer to do something different with ice cream.  Georgia and Jack no longer want their ice cream machine.  William Daniels has raised his prices to $3.  There are a lot of repairs with ice cream machines.  We should meet with consultants and Maureen to discuss options on an individual basis. 

Region 4 – Tony Arduengo
Installing at the Rosa Parks Bus Station.  Renovations are going on inside the building so we got an outdoor enclosure.  Added a Supervisor of Elections location in Hillsborough County and now are getting more referrals from the county.  Will be surveying 15 post offices from Homosassa down to Bonita Springs.  4 will be on the Lakeland vending route.  Have a bunch of federal stuff including 3 VA’s, 3 IRS, 2 Social Security and Bay Pines.  There was a break in at the Ft. Myers rest area.  DOT has been notified and waiting on the police report.  Food Services:  Hillsborough Courthouse sales plateaued. The pandemic has changed how courthouses do jury services.  It is about 2/3 of what it was at its peak.  Installed machines at the Sarasota-Bradenton Airport at 4 locations, 2 were offsite, and more coming.  The operator signed up with DOT as a “Certified Minority Business Enterprise.”  Operators are encouraged to apply for that certification in the event an airport opportunity opens up.  Both airports with public vending are excellent. 

District 8 – Sead Bekric – At district meeting everyone seems to be doing well.  Sales are up.  He has had some vandalism with broken glass front.  Vendors are pricing products high.   Discussion about how profit needs to be at 40% overall not on each product. 

District 7 – T.J. McCormick – Same problems as everyone else.  Repair issues and cost of product.  Everyone getting back to work. 

Region 5 – Maureen Fink – Last month counselors from West Palm Beach office came over and talked with operators.  The operators were very good at explaining what they do and the program to the counselors.  Counselors didn’t realize how much operators do.  Adding some locations in Palm Beach County.  Most growth will be in Palm Bay, Mark Ogden’s route.  Getting card readers swapped out.  

District 9 - Ed Spence – Business is beginning to pick up in the region. 

Region 6 – Maureen Fink – Met with counselors from the Miami Office on the 25th.  Guillermo, Justino and Daniel.  Are trying to get a third party into the Rhode Building.  We have an agreement and are waiting for them to get their DBPR license.  Had a soft opening of micromarket at FAA in Miami.  Food is prepared there.  Tony came down and helped them get setup.  No response from Miami prisons about reopening.  We will be getting a new person for the consultant position in Region 6.

District 10 – Daniel Ochoa – No complaints. 

Round Table: 
Sead and Kurt are looking at a product called 42 Degrees in a can which is a coffee product.  Will be trying to get samples to bring to next meeting.  Might be a solution to aging coffee machines.  You shake the can, peel off fold, turn upside down and it heats itself.  Just got first order from Spain to US.  Very popular product in Europe.  Cost is 15 oz @ $2.00-$2.25.  They have different flavors.  There is also an ice cream that is made in a can and they also have caffeine infused gummy bears.  We cannot distribute CBD products.  Phil Hubbard:  Cheese Witch is a high protein snack sold through Vistar. 

Crosby:  On the topic of rebates – USG puts more money in their account. Lindstrom:  there have been some accounting issues with previous rebate company.  USG sends very informative emails about products.  USG has no corporate agreements with Coke.  No bottler in Florida is participating in rebates. 

Ponchak asked Findley to think about who from the Agency he wants to work with the Committee on set aside percentage increase proposal.
Motion to adjourn by Jim Warth
Adjourned at 9:53 AM


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