MTA News Bytes

September 15, 2017

In This Issue

Meetings and Events

MTA Updates

Action Items

>> 2017 MTA Fall Conference

>> 2018 MTA Annual Convention Call for Proposals!

Informational items

>> Minnesota Public Utilities Commission Calls Attention to Lifeline Awareness Week

Peer Group Bulletin

>> Don't Miss These 2017 MTA Peer Group Investment Opportunities!

>> Upcoming Peer Group Events

Safety Corner

>> Stop the Spread Before it Begins

MTA Staff

MTA President/CEO:
Brent Christensen
Team Leader:

Jacquie Durant
Event Planners:
Julie Cygan Diamond
Carissa Wolf
Member Services:
Jeanne DeMartino

Anna Wrisky
Administrative Assistant:
Anne Christensen

Stay up-to-date on daily happenings at the MTA offices by following us on Facebook. From peer group meetings to annual conferences and everything in between, get the scoop on what’s happening at our offices!




Meetings and Events

October 3-4, 2017: Customer Service Group Fall Conference
The Inn on Lake Superior, Duluth

October 5-6, 2017: MTA Fall Conference
Minneapolis Marriott Northwest

November 20, 2017: Administrative Assistant Peer Group Fall Conference
AmericInn Lodge & Suites, Wahpeton, ND

December 6-7, 2017: Plant Manager & Superintendent Peer Group Meeting
Holiday Inn & Suites, St. Cloud

March 26-28, 2018: MTA Annual Convention & Trade Show
Hyatt Regency Minneapolis

March 18-20, 2019: MTA Annual Convention & Trade Show
Hyatt Regency Minneapolis

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MTA Updates


2017 MTA Fall Conference

2017 MTA Fall Conference

October 5-6, 2017 | Minneapolis Marriott Northwest, Brooklyn Park, MN

>> View Details and Register Online

Kids are back to school, the Vikings have started playing "for real," leaves are changing color, and most importantly ... the MTA FALL CONFERENCE is less than a month away!

Thank you, Sponsors

MTA members will come to Minneapolis from all over the state to learn more about the important issues facing our industry — and this is your opportunity to get your company’s message in front of them.

>> View sponsor or exhibit details for the 2017 MTA Fall Conference.


Bader Comunications


inteliquent logo

Olsen Thielen

Security Coverage logo


Dakota Supply Group

Finley Engineering


National Information Solutions Cooperative

Telcom Construction

Telcom Construction

Innovative Systems LLC
Interstate Telcom Consulting, Inc.

Cisco Systems
Innovative Systems LLC
Olsen Thielen CPAs

2018 MTA Annual Convention Call for Proposals!
Deadline for submission: October 13, 2017

2018 MTA Convention Call for Proposals

We are now planning for the Annual Convention and Trade Show, March 26-28, 2018, at the Hyatt Regency in Minneapolis. Our convention offers you an opportunity to talk with the (estimated 1,100) MTA attendees face-to-face.

Request for Proposals

There are additional opportunities for you to demonstrate your knowledge and expertise to all attendees. We are requesting submissions of speakers and presenters for our breakout sessions and luncheons.

Breakout Session Requirements

The 2018 MTA Convention will have 14 breakout sessions of 50 minutes each and an Issues Update Luncheon. Sessions will be presented on Monday, March 26 and Tuesday, March 27, 2018. No sales pitches, please.

>> Submit a Proposal

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Minnesota Public Utilities Commission Calls Attention to Lifeline Awareness Week

Assistance with landline or wireless telephone charges is available to help low-income customers stay connected

St. Paul, Minnesota – “In today’s society everyone should have access to an affordable, basic level of telephone service in order to meet essential and emergency needs,” states the Chair of the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (Commission), Nancy Lange.

Access to local emergency services and community resources is vital to low-income and elderly residents. The Commission wants Minnesota residents to “stay connected” and is reaching out to those who need phone service but can’t afford it. During “Lifeline Awareness Week,” September 11-15, the Commission will promote the Lifeline Program, which offers discounts to help residents have access to basic local telephone service.

Under the federal Lifeline program, telephone customers who participate in, or are eligible for, certain assistance programs are able to receive a basic telephone service discount. It is in the form of a credit of $9.25 per month. This discount is available with many landline service providers, and many wireless providers as well, although AT&T, Verizon and Sprint do not offer Lifeline.

To apply for benefits, contact your local landline or wireless telephone company or the Commission. The agency can be reached at (651) 296-0406, (800) 657-3782,, or visit the website at

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Peer Group Bulletin
All MTA members are welcome to join a Peer Group

Don't Miss These 2017 MTA Peer Group Investment Opportunities!

MTA’s core purpose is to enhance the success and viability of its telecommunications industry members. You are an important part of helping us fulfill this mission. Here is your opportunity to maximize the impact of your event sponsorships for 2017.Stay tuned for 2018 opportunities.

Download the 2017 Peer Group Investment Opportunities for full details

Sponsor a Peer Group: Sign Up Online!

Upcoming Peer Group Events

2017 CSR Fall Conference

Tuesday, October 3-4, 2017
The Inn on Lake Superior | 350 Canal Park Drive, Duluth, MN 55802

Rates: Members - $125, Nonmembers - $150

The Inn on Lake Superior
350 Canal Park Drive | Duluth, MN 55802

Room block: Block of rooms reserved under MTA Customer Service Conference.  
Call 218-726-1111 or Toll Free 888-668-4352, room block expires September 29.

>> Full Details and Registration

Administrative Assistant Peer Group 2017 Fall Conference

November 20, 2017 | AmericInn Lodge & Suites, Wahpeton, North Dakota

Rates: $99 per person

AmericInn Lodge & Suites
2029 210 Drive | Wahpeton, North Dakota  58075
Call 701-642-8365; ask for Allison. Room block name: MN Administrative Assistants Peer Group

>> Full Details and Registration

Plant Manager & Superintendent Peer Group Meeting

December 6-7, 2017 | Holiday Inn & Suites, St. Cloud, Minnesota 

Rates: $150 members or nonmembers

Holiday Inn & Suites
75 S 37th Ave. | St. Cloud, Minnesota  5630

Room block ends November 24, 2017, call 1-800-315-2621 to make reservations.

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Safety Corner

Stop the Spread Before it Begins

Remember about a year ago, when your cubicle neighbor caught a cold? Soon after that a technician who stops by your desk is sneezing and now your co-worker in customer services is hacking. Within a short time, your once happy productive officemates are either surrendering to sick days or showing up for work while fighting fevers and coughs. flu season sign
So let’s gather everyone together and take an oath — “Not This Year.” If all of us follow a few tips, we can help keep ourselves and our co-workers healthy this cold and flu season.

Know where the germs hang out. We think about restrooms and door handles — but don’t forget about the breakroom... yes, that room where you handle your lunch.  Microwave buttons, coffee pot handles, sink faucets and break room countertops are among the most germ-infested surfaces. Other high-traffic surfaces, such as door handles and copier buttons, can harbor loads of germs. These are the things everyone touches. While we may have noticed the cleaning crew disinfecting the restrooms during the day, when is the last time you noticed someone wiping down the microwave buttons?

Disinfect these spots, especially during the cold and flu season. Remember to wipe down door handles, table tops, microwaves — and don’t forget to wipe down your desktop. Especially if you are the kind of person who heats up your food and then sits at your desk to eat.

Please, please cover your coughs and sneezes. Unfortunately, sneezes can travel long distances, so grab a tissue. If a tissue is unavailable it is best to sneeze or cough into your upper sleeve rather than your hand.

Wash your hands — the single best thing you can do to keep yourself healthy during cold and flu season is to wash your hands. Wash your hands before eating, after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing and after using the restroom. A quick rinse job does not cut it. You need to lather up and then scrub for at least 20 seconds, or the length of singing the ABC song. No soap and water? Then use hand sanitizer, rub it in and let it dry on its own.
washing hands

Take that sick day when needed. You are an important part of your team, but showing up to work when you really should be in bed infects not only your co-workers but also their family members.

Colds and flu can have a domino effect in the workplace. It can take down workers and seriously hinder productivity. By emphasizing wellness in the workplace, we can reduce absenteeism, boost productivity and increase employee retention.  By applying these tips we can all have a healthier cold and flu season.

Let’s all make an effort to keep the workplace healthy this cold and flu season.

Chris Swanson
Safety Consultant


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