City Commission gets first look at transient guest tax allocation requests for 2019 Featured

By Brandon Peoples and Alex Turley June 13, 2018 228 0
The Emporia City Commission met in a study session with members of various organizations Wednesday presenting their requests for funding in the 2019 budget. The Emporia City Commission met in a study session with members of various organizations Wednesday presenting their requests for funding in the 2019 budget. Photo by Brandon Peoples/KVOE News.

The Emporia City Commission spent a bulk of their study session Wednesday looking at budget appropriations being recommended by the Emporia Area Convention and Visitors Bureau Advisory Board.


Commissioners were presented with the first look at the requests as it prepares for budget discussions later this summer. The CVAB is requesting $371,550 for 2019. In the allocations, the CVAB is recommending fully funding the requests for Dirty Kanza Promotions, Dynamic Discs for the Glass Blown Open, the Emporia Arts Council and Emporia Main Street. Elsewhere, the Granada Theatre requested $20,000, but the CVAB is recommending they receive $10,000. Jessica Buchholz, CVAB Board Chair says they believed the Granada could still be successful with less allocated money.

In addition, the Emporia Municipal Band requested $10,000, with CVAB recommending $5,000 and stating the organization should become more self-sustaining, seek more sponsorships and possibly charge admission at some performances. Red Rocks Historic Site was seeking $10,000 and CVAB is recommending $7,500 with $2,500 specified for marketing and growth with documentation provided on its next appropriation request. Commissioner Rob Gilligan says these meetings allow the city commission to play a bigger role in helping community organizations.

Mayor Danny Giefer says those allocations in the budget are funded from dollars collected in the city's transient guest tax fund.

Also discussed was contracts for Rural Water Districts No. 1 serving Americus and No. 4 serving Neosho Rapids. District 1 needs a renewal in order to seek federal funds for construction of a new water storage facility while District 4 needs to replace an expired contract. Giefer says for now it's not clear whether water customers there or in Emporia will see water rate increases as a result.

Commissioners briefly discussed railroad quiet zones. Former Assistant City Manager Jim Witt informed the commission that before quiet zones could be implemented through BNSF, a study needs to be completed. The last city study on the issue was completed in 2011. There are about six to eight crossings that would affect, with a 10 percent reduction in noise. However, commissioners are not committed to spending any money, noting any local funds on a potential project in the future would come through grants.

The city will meet for an action session next Wednesday at 7 p.m.

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Last modified on Thursday, 14 June 2018 10:58

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