MCTA, Chamber discuss relationship, shared office space

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In other action:

At the Moffat County Tourism Association’s monthly meeting, the board also:

• Approved, 6-0, correcting the minutes of the April 2011 meeting to reflect the approval of $7,300 in event sponsorship for the Colorado State BBQ Championship instead of $2,375 as written. Board member Bryce Jacobson abstained.

• Heard a presentation from Kandee Dilldine about Grand Olde West Days’ attendance, sponsorships and advertising dollars spent.

• Denied a request from Dan Davidson, director of the Museum of Northwest Colorado, to fund printing costs for a Marcia Car brochure.

• Heard a presentation from Josh Lowe, of YampaGeo, about a proposed collaborative interactive mapping project.

• Approved, 6-1, spending $1,148 on 100 30-second commercials on KRAI radio station. Board member Kerry Moe voted against.

• Approved, 7-0, the 2012 MCTA budget, totaling $158,400 with a reserve of $74,124.20.

• Approved, 7-0, spending $1,272 on six months of advertising at Yampa Valley Regional Airport.

• Heard a report from director Melody Villard and discussed a Colorado Open Records Act request, office assistant Gena Hinkemeyer’s resignation and using a Moffat County floating worker opportunity to complete projects and a memorandum of understanding with the Craig Chamber of Commerce.

A discussion about the Moffat County Tourism Association seeking new office space Thursday at the Craig Chamber of Commerce board meeting turned from square footage to relationships.

MCTA, currently located in the northwest corner of the Museum of Northwest Colorado, 590 Yampa Ave., is considering several commercial rental spaces in Craig.

At the museum, MCTA has 224 square feet of office space plus shared storage and kitchen space for $416.66 per month, which includes utilities. MCTA’s current lease with the museum, which the organizations plan to discontinue, expires Nov. 30.

MCTA director Melody Villard proposes the organization rent suite 121 in Centennial Mall, 1111 W. Victory Way, which is 3,217 square feet.

Villard wrote in her director’s report that rent at the mall is negotiable and that she would like to present a proposal for $800 per month. Utilities would be an additional expense.

At Thursday’s Chamber meeting, Villard said the additional space at the mall is a “hidden opportunity” for “interactive displays,” including some from Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association and Dinosaur National Monument.

Villard said the mall would also afford opportunities to host events and utilize the corridor space for wall hangings.

Chamber executive director Christina Oxley said she takes issue with “using tax dollars to duplicate an existing service” offered by the Moffat County Visitor Center, which the Chamber operates.

Bryce Jacobson, MCTA board member and Craig Daily Press publisher, said Wednesday he would like to revisit the issue of having an office at the Chamber, 360 E. Victory Way, before moving forward with other arrangements.

Oxley said such an arrangement would require re-addressing an expansion at the office, as the two organizations, along with the Craig/Moffat Economic Development Partnership, have discussed in past years.

However, Villard said Thursday she thinks the mall offers more opportunities than the Chamber space.

Rebekah Greenwood, executive assistant at the Chamber, said she hopes MCTA can spend funds on marketing the area and creating visitor-ready attractions instead of duplicating services.

“We already have a wonderful asset here at the visitor center,” Greenwood said.

Chamber board member Gene Bilodeau, who is also an EDP board member, said the relationship between the Chamber and MCTA has eroded to a previous state.

EDP Director Darcy Owens-Trask sent an email Tuesday to Chamber and MCTA directors and board chairpersons stating her intent to ask her board to approve a neutrality statement indicating EDP would not take sides between the two entities.

“I think there’s two groups who need to wake up…” Bilodeau said. “It isn’t healthy and it’s starting to be reflected more and more in the community, and I don’t want to be a part of it.”

Villard said she hopes to improve communication and move forward.

“I think some bridges were burnt and I’d like to see us rebuild those,” she said.

At Wednesday’s MCTA meeting, Jacobson offered that MCTA could look into a temporary office location, such as at the Daily Press office, 466 Yampa Ave., until construction could be completed at the Chamber office, should the organizations reach an agreement to be housed together.

MCTA board member Kerry Moe made a motion Wednesday to move forward with renting space at Centennial Mall, which did not receive a second.

The MCTA board tabled further discussion and a decision on office space until its Oct. 5 meeting.

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Comments

Cole White 3 years, 3 months ago

Nice job MCTA! I think the Craig Chamber had a plan to have the MCTA and the EDP housed in the Chamber building but the Einsteins on the MCTA board thought that was a bad idea! Hmmmmm.....way to go MCTA board!

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Jon Pfeifer 3 years, 3 months ago

Why is the MCTA terminating a lease that is less than half the cost of any of the proposed new ones? Would be nice to have some background on why and what the plans are that require more space.

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lonelyone 3 years, 3 months ago

Highway 1340, the subject of expansion had been talked about for years. At the moment there is very little room for all three groups to be housed in the chamber building. Have you ever been there? I don't know if there is still talk of building onto that building or not or if it is still wishful thinking. Small Towner, 224 sq. ft. is not alot of office space. I'm not saying what MCTA wants to do is right, nor am I saying it is wrong. You have two strong willed women trying to do a job and both think their ideas are better than the others. Darcy, I think you are very smart for staying out of this issue.

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cmedpdirector 3 years, 3 months ago

Just as a point of clarification. In the email I said I intended to ask the CMEDP Board of Directors to approve a letter of neutrality and partnership in which we publically address that our organization will continue to work collaboratively with any and all public and private sector partners that can help us advance a strong, stable economy for the community. CMEDP resources are very limited and we simply cannot allow ourselves to be involved issues that divert us from our work. We will not partner in such a way that we could be perceived as choosing sides except that we will always choose the path that we believe is the best for all businesses, workers and the economy."

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grumpy 3 years, 3 months ago

Wow! Talk about the uninformed going off on a rant about something they know only by what was printed in the "biased" "Craig Daily Mess". You really should attend some of the meetings and hear first hand what is really going on before you start spouting off about about these things. Get the facts before you start pointing fingers. Better yet, get involved with what is going on.

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Change 3 years, 3 months ago

Maybe what these groups needs is a change in Boards --- too many people on the same boards, too many conflicts of interest, and one constant hurdle for MCTA and EDP to jump over to make positive changes is still causing problems and negative interface for two EDP directors and four MCTA directors. Limiting how many board seats or public offices one was able to hold could bring fresh perspectives as well as limit stagnant discussion between boards because they are really only continuing to revisit the same issues from one meeting to the next with basically the same players each time.

The space for MCTA could be a jumpstart for mall and surrounding businesses which should make the membership driven organization a lot happier and perhaps even help to increase their membership. Maybe the Chamber could ask the CDP to print their budget, there are numerous intelligent community members who could help them to balance their spending in this economy. It would be very interesting to see how the money is spent during a downward economy for such a small membership in that organization. Perhaps the MCTA could do the same.

Time for Change!

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cmedpdirector 3 years, 2 months ago

Change: Would you mind clarifying your comments regarding the CMEDP board, is it your opinion that the CMEDP board is not effective based on the makeup of the board? Are you aware that three new memebers have joined the board within the last year and a half and two of those members are young professionals?

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