CFA board to study similar boards statewide

Aug 26, 2018
The Westcott House recently got approval for funding from the Clark County CFA, which uses revenue from hotel bed taxes to fund local tourism efforts. Bill Lackey/Staff

Members of the Clark County Convention Authority Board are taking a look at similar entities across Ohio to find out if there are better ways to promote tourism in Clark County.

Board members said they will appoint two volunteers to review other CFAs across the state to see how those entities operate and promote their communities. The Clark County CFA is set up to provide funding to local projects that can promote tourism and boost hotel stays in the county. But board members said Clark County’s CFA is smaller than some similar entities in the state, and said it would be beneficial to see if there are other practices that could be applied locally to make the agency more effective.

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For example, board members have previously debated what kinds of projects they should be funding. For example, they questioned whether it makes more sense to pay for several smaller projects, or set aside more money over time for a big project that could draw more visitors to the area.

Board Chairman Chuck Ingle said there are about 10 other CFAs in the state. Some of those, like Columbus, operate differently than Clark County because they have more resources. But he said it makes sense to take a look at other entities to see if there is a better way of doing business here.

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“We might find out what we’re doing is fine,” Ingle said. “It just seems to me we should take a look at it.”

Clark County’s CFA is funded through a 3 percent tax levied countywide on hotel and motel stays. The board’s annual income is around $450,000. This year, the board has funded projects that include necessary repairs at the Springfield Museum of Art and provided funding for maintenance at the Westcott House.

Board members Chuck Ingle, Joan Elder, Jim Gay and Heather Corbin agreed to serve an additional four-year term during Thursday’s meeting. Their current terms expire in October, and the board is expected to vote to approve their additional terms at the CFA board’s next meeting in October.