DDA to consider policy changes, elect officers

MANISTEE — The Manistee Downtown Development Authority has a full agenda planned at noon today in the council chambers at City Hall.

On the agenda, DDA board members will consider a change in policy regarding current standing committees and their structure. In a DDA document, the policy states that committees should be reviewed and priorities established by the board.

Standing committees include the Design committee, Redevelopment committee, Business Development committee, and Marketing and Promotions committee. Standing committees determine their meeting times and dates.

The DDA members will review these committees and Policy 13 today.

“At the last meeting there was discussion regarding our current committees and their structure,” stated Tyler Leppanen, DDA executive and economic development director, in a memo. At a previous meeting, members were talking about condensing the committees and work involved, among other possible changes.

Also at today’s meeting, DDA board members will vote for the election of officers. The chairperson, vice chairperson, treasurer and secretary will be up for grabs.

Currently, Rachel Brooks acts as chair, Barry Lind acts as vice chair and Valarie Bergstrom is both treasurer and secretary.

During the meeting, the DDA board will also consider Policy 15, which regards the fund balance in the budget.

“At the last meeting there was discussion regarding having a policy in place to govern how the DDA board will use (the) fund balance,” stated Leppanen. This policy will be reviewed at the meeting.

In Policy 15, as presented in the DDA meeting agenda packet, it states that the DDA board must maintain a minimum of 20 percent of the next year’s fiscal budgeted revenues as a fund balance.

It further states in the document that “the DDA board will use (a) separate banking account to hold designated funds; for example, Land Aquisition funds, Facade Grant funds, Revolving Loan funds and Downtown Dollars.”

Another request to the board today is a Revolving Loan for Manistee Bridal, which the Redevelopment committee reviewed on Monday. Further information on the request will be shared at the meeting. Manistee Bridal opened downtown in the spring.

The DDA board will also consider a budget amendment request from the Business Development committee for Spark Manistee. Spark Manistee is requesting $1,000 from the DDA board to support the event, and to pay for costs relating to facility rental and marketing of the event.

Spark Manistee will be held prior to Hops and Props on Sept. 15. A winner will be selected with the best “business idea” pitched to an audience and judges.

Board members will also consider a draft review of the executive and economic development director. Two board members put together the draft review for today’s meeting.

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Posted by Ashlyn Korienek

Ashlyn is the cops & courts and city reporter for the Manistee News Advocate. You can reach her at (231) 398-3109 or akorienek@pioneergroup.com

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