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City Council to hold work session on proposed tourism budget Tuesday


City Council will meet Tuesday, April 24 for the last planned work session before it adopts a final operating budget for the fiscal year 2019 early next month.

The meeting will lead off with a presentation from Barbara Dameron, city finance director. She is expected to provide an overview of the city’s new Tourism Fund, and how Gov. Ralph Northam’s recently added amendments to the Historic Triangle sales tax bill would impact tourism revenue in the upcoming year.

Under the city’s proposed budget, a total of $4.4 million would be allocated to the Tourism Fund had the original version of SB 942 been signed into law. These funds would consist of $2.2 million in revenue from the city’s share of the 1 percent increase to the sales tax and a $2.2 million transfer from the city’s general fund.

The city would spend a total of $2.3 million from the Tourism Fund on administrative and tourism marketing costs, and transfer the remaining $2 million to its Tourism Development Fund.

At the Council’s April 9 work session, City Manager Marvin Collins explained that $1.7 million would be transferred to the Tourism Development Fund’s reserves for future tourism infrastructure maintenance. The remaining $300,000 would be allocated to the TDF’s budget for the upcoming year, with $150,000 going toward a “tourism marketing contingency fund.”

“The other $150,000 is in anticipation of there being some need, whether it be for the downtown [parking] plan or for the EDA or some other request that’s going to require some amount of funding between implementation [of the proposed budget] and next July,” said Collins at last week’s work session.

The work session will also include presentations from Greater Williamsburg Chamber and Tourism Alliance President Karen Riordan regarding upcoming economic and marketing efforts under the proposed budget, and an update on next year’s planned Capital Improvement Programs.

Want to go?

City Council will hold its final budget work session at 9 a.m. April 24 in the city council chambers of the Stryker Center. A final operating budget for the fiscal year of 2019 is expected to be adopted at the Council’s May 10 meeting.

Arriaza can be reached at 757-790-9313 or on Twitter @rodrigoarriaza0.

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