CAPC approves multiple marketing support fund requests

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

The Eureka Springs City Advertising

and Promotion Commission expressed

its support for several community projects

on Wednesday, Feb. 14.

The commission considered several

marketing support fund requests at its

regular meeting, starting with the first

annual Off the Beaten Path. Chris Fischer,

one of the event’s organizers, said the

event will take place during May Festival

of the Arts and will expose visitors

and locals to all the natural resources in

and around Eureka Springs. The event

has many objectives, Fischer said.

“The goal of these activities is to

present the natural resources of Eureka

Springs to a broader audience as well as

increase the knowledge of those who are

already interested,” Fischer said. “We

also hope to promote long-term stewardship

and conservation to sustain our local

biodiversity and habitats.”

Another goal, he said, is to show the

importance of the unique landscape in

Eureka Springs.

“We’re going to structure our activities.

We’re planning to go through downtown

to look at our Native Plant Garden

site, to use parks and trails and the spring

reservations through town to get folks familiar

with Eureka’s environment and to

share that environment with the business

landscape the best we can,” Fischer said.

He’s already spoken with Chip Ford,

the creator of the Eureka Springs App,

about getting information on the event in

the app.

“There’s very pertinent information

the phones can deliver while the event is

going on,” Fischer said.

The commission could help the event,

Fischer said, by helping print handouts

for those who attend. Fischer said these

handouts won’t just be useful for the

event.

“Those will be used by people who

come back to town often,” Fischer said.

“It’s not May 2018-driven only. It’ll act

as a resource guide for the town.”

Commissioner David Mitchell moved

to spend $1,200 to help the event, and

the commission unanimously agreed to

do so.

The commission then heard from Dee

Bright, who spoke on behalf of the Eureka

Springs Preservation Society’s annual

Christmas Tour of Homes. She said last

year’s event went better than expected.

“This past year was the best ever. We

broke all our records,” she said, saying

there were nearly 1,000 people in attendance.

Because the tour changes every year,

chairwoman Susan Harman said, it could

be good to integrate the information from

past tours into the app. Commissioner

Carol Wright agreed.

“You move locations each year and

each one of those is something people,

as a visitor, I think, would really enjoy,”

Wright said. “I would personally love to

take visitors where it was this year and

show them unique houses and be able to

describe historically and architecturally

what’s going on.”

Dee Bright said she’d work with Ford

to make the information available on the

app. The commission voted, unanimously

agreeing to support the event. The

commission also approved marketing

support fund requests from Springtime

in the Ozarks, the Veterans Day Parade

and Books in Bloom.

In other business, the commission

considered Greg Moon’s application to

join the commission. Moon said he’s

lived in Eureka Springs for quite some

time, leaving three years ago and returning

recently to manage The Rowdy

Beaver restaurant. Moon described his

experience in tourism, saying he worked

at the Ritz Carlton in Laguna Beach, Calif.,

for 20 years.

“I’ve served on other commissions

and have a good background in tourism,

and I think I have a lot to offer,” Moon

said.

Commissioner Terry McClung moved

to add Greg Moon to the commission,

and the commission unanimously voted

to do so.

The commission moved on to take

care of some beginning-of-the-year

housekeeping items, agreeing to continue

meeting at 6 p.m. on the second

Wednesday of the month in The Auditorium.

The commission approved authorizing

McClung, Harman, director

Mike Maloney and finance director Rick

Bright to sign financial documents and

heard from Bright about proposed merit

raises. Bright said the cost of living wage

increases won’t affect the 2018 budget

but merit raises would be an extra expense.

“If you wanted to do the 2 percent

merit raise … it’s my understanding that

the city just has a pool of money for the

best employees that rank the best until

the money’s gone,” Bright said. “Of

course, our money is separate from the

city, so it would all come out of our bank

account.”

Mitchell said he isn’t sure about the

way the city hands out merit raises.

“There’s just something odd about the

city and the merit raises, to be perfectly

honest,” Mitchell said. “I highly question

it’s a merit system. I just think it’s going

to be fraught with more trouble and

there’s no history behind it.”

Commissioner Bobbi Foster asked

how often CAPC employees are evaluated,

and Bright said evaluations have occurred

once in the six years he’s worked

in the office. Harman agreed with Mitchell,

saying she couldn’t get behind merit

raises until recent performance reviews

are completed.

“There hasn’t been anything done, so

personally I would feel better doing merit

increases if we had some sort of history,”

Harman said. “We don’t have that

right now.”

Mitchell moved to decline the merit

raises, and the commission unanimously

agreed to do so.

The commission’s next regular meeting

is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday,

March 14, at The Auditorium.

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