CAPC approves 2018 budget

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

The Eureka Springs City Advertising

and Promotion Commission is ready to

take on 2018.

On Wednesday, Dec. 13, the commission

focused on its 2018 budget. Chairwoman

Susan Harman said the budget

looked good but was missing $10,000 for

the Christmas festival and $10,000 for

entertainment during May Festival of the

Arts. Harman said she’s not sure about

spending $25,000 on May Festival of the

Arts, saying that would be in addition to

the $10,000 for entertainment.

“I don’t know if we’ve come to a consensus

as far as how we want to write that

out,” Harman said. “I think we had agreed

on all the other special events, but that one

was in question.”

Director Mike Maloney said the

$25,000 would not be spent on promotion.

“The money for MFA basically goes to

the art community to create art,” Maloney

said. “Of course, art’s in a variety of formats,

from theater to music to printed materials.

Last year, we did it with $15,000.”

He continued, “I think we barely got

by. I think we really squeaked by with that

amount of money, and I think the $25,000

this year would open the door to additional

participation and help the overall program

be more dynamic. I think we really owe

the festival as much opportunity as we can

to drive traffic to Eureka Springs for this

production.”

With the additional $10,000 for entertainment,

Harman said, that would put the

expenses for May Festival of the Arts at

$35,000. Commissioner Carol Wright said

that makes sense considering how long the

festival is.

“It’s a month-long event, right?” Wright

said. “I think we have to consider how

many weekends and how many days it’ll

happen.”

Harman asked events coordinator Andy

Green if the extra $10,000 would be used

throughout the month, and Green said it

would.

“I don’t plan to use it all in the first

week,” Green said.

Commissioner Terry McClung said

$35,000 is a lot of money to spend on one

festival, saying he hopes more funds would

mean more visitors during the week.

“The only way I’m willing in my mind

to put $35,000 into that festival is if they’re

making a concerted effort to fill rooms at

midweek,” McClung said.

Maloney said many of the events featured

during the festival encourage midweek

visitors, such as the Plein Air Festival.

“The plain air artists are painting all

week long,” Maloney said. “I think the

intent really is to go ahead and foster the

middle of the week business. It’s always

our goal to boost that … business.”

Harman asked if the budget could stipulate

that a certain percentage of the funds

be spent on midweek events, and Maloney

said he could do that.

The commission moved on to other

budget items, with commissioner David

Mitchell saying Green is a contracted employee

whose wages appear on the salaries

and wages line item.

“For me, salary and wages means a

budgeted employee that’s on the salary

and gets benefits and you keep up with it,”

Mitchell said. “I never saw a contract person’s

contract under salary and wages. It

seems it should be pulled out of salaries

and wages.”

Finance director Rick Bright said that

would be easy to do.

“We can do a different line item for

events coordinator,” Bright said. “The

reason that was set up is previously they

were just an hourly employee, or salary

employee, that did events.”

Commissioner Dusty Duling moved

to approve the budget with the addition

of $10,000 for the Christmas festival and

$10,000 for May Festival of the Arts entertainment,

along with Green’s wages

becoming a different line item. The commission

voted unanimously to approve the

budget.

Also at the meeting, the commission

saw several videos from videographers

throughout Northwest Arkansas. Maloney

said he asked the videographers for examples

of their work to determine who to

work with in 2018.

“I submitted to six different people

and these five submitted,” Maloney said.

“They’ve all got pretty good work.”

Duling said he liked Eureka Springs

resident Edward Robison’s work the best.

“I think it’s plain to see Edward has the

flavor of Eureka Springs and the creativity

we want to set ourselves apart,” Duling

said. “He can tell a story that’s intangible

[about] the thing we have here better than

the others.”

Maloney agreed.

“The one thing I really like about Edward’s

work is he tells stories,” Maloney

said.

Mitchell said he liked all the videos.

“Because I didn’t objectively see anything

lean one way or another, I’d be more

inclined because the quality is there to

stick with a local person,” Mitchell said.

Duling moved to award the contract to

Robison, and the commission agreed.

The commission’s next regular meeting

is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday, Jan.

10, at The Auditorium.

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