Executive Director Neil Toeppe presented the Wauseon Chamber of Commerce Annual Report to City Council at the March 16 meeting.
Toeppe explained to council that while their expenses seem to exceed their dues revenue, the figure is deceiving as some of their expenses are covered by the cost of the events and they also raise revenue from other non-dues revenue sources. “Since the end of 2012 our expenses have been reduced by about $30,000 a year. That’s for the past two years, so we’re maintaining a pretty good trajectory on maintaining expenses.”
He outlined the Chamber expenses over the past year that have included an updated website and member management system city ($3750), repairs to the “Welcome to Wauseon” sign on Route 108 and Airport ($4700), new carpeting and office furniture for the City-owned Chamber building ($3100) and lights for their Homecoming/Christmas parade float ($600). They also transferred to the Fire Department for $4800 donated to the Chamber for a flag pole at the 9/11 memorial at the fairgrounds.
Finally, Toeppe went on to describe the various events the Chamber supports. For example, he said their golf outing generates about $5000 a year and those proceeds are dedicated soley to scholarships. Toeppe said that over the years they’ve awarded over $55,000 in scholarships to Wauseon students. In addition, they issue 18,000 to 20,000 gift certificates that are valid only at local business. They are also involved with Ribbon Cuttings, Cruise Night, Farmer’s Market, Homecoming and the Christmas Parade.
He said that the Chamber is important to these organizations because most do not have someone to answer the phone for them. “We act almost like a local Yellow Pages locally,” said Toeppe. “The role of the chamber, especially in smaller communities, is evolving…It’s going from a community party planner to more of a business advocate,” he continued.
In other Council business:
•Council passed a motion to accept the Utility Committee’s recommendation that an application for a grant for the materials ($32,366) for Haas Door to redirect the storm sewer for their building addition be presented to the Revolving Loan Fund.
•Fire Chief Rick Sluder reported that all the civil service testing is complete and they have taken delivery of the new ambulance, which should be in service in the next few days.
•Police Chief Keith Torbet announce the Police Department will host a Safety Day in conjunction with the Chili Cookoff.
•Dennis Richardson, Director of Public Service reported that the Linfoot St. project is received approval from the Federal Highway Department and the State of Ohio Department of Transportation plans to put out bids in April.
•Council approved the emergency second reading of a resolution to authorize the mayor to grant a permanent easement to Toledo Edison for a twelve-foot strip on the east side of the right away along Glenwood Avenue for underground electrical service. It is effective immediately.
•Council also approved the emergency first reading of a resolution to authorize the mayor to execute the economic development revolving loan fund administration agreement with the State of Ohio Development Services Agency effective immediately.
•On a 6-0 vote, council approved the first reading of Ordinance 2015-15 to amend Section 505.01 of the Codified Ordinances of the City of Wauseon (Dogs Running at Large; Dangerous or Vicious Dogs).
•Finally, council approved the first reading of a resolution to authorize the mayor to enter into a contract with Arcadis for Biosolids Studies at the Water Reclamation Plant.
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