Aldermen want more ‘definitions’ in the agreement
Under terms of an updated agreement that is currently being negotiated, the City of Platte City would pay $15,000 to the Platte City Area Chamber of Commerce for economic development services.
The new agreement was originally expected to be approved Tuesday night by the Platte City Board of Aldermen, but aldermen indicated they want the chamber and city staff to add some “definitions” to the agreement. So the agenda item was pushed back to the October meeting.
The proposed new deal will include some changes from the previous pact. It is expected to be an initial one year term plus three one-year extensions, subject to annual approval by the Platte City Board of Aldermen.
The annual payment would increase to $16,500 per year for the final two years of the extension. The increase to $16,500 will happen unless otherwise adjusted due to an increase or decrease in the scope of work, said DJ Gehrt, city administrator for Platte City.
If all extensions are exercised, the agreement will run through Oct. 30, 2025.
In the proposed new deal, the scope of work to be performed for the city by the chamber is expected to include:
.Community outreach and business development visits.
.City representation at regional economic development activities.
.Conduct the holiday lighting and at least two other downtown community events.
Platte City Chamber of Commerce has provided locally focused economic development support and downtown community events for many years. In the years since 2012, the city/chamber relationship has been governed by a series of mutually beneficial service agreements that increased city financial support and specified the chamber’s economic development tasks and functions.
The most recent agreement between the city and chamber was approved in 2017, with the last extension ending in October of this year.
The 2017 agreement focused on the chamber performing the following development activities: community outreach and information; city representation; community event coordination and participation.
A number of specific sub-tasks were listed under each of the three main development activities.
Gehrt says in reviewing the 2017 sub-tasks, the chamber satisfactorily performed nine of the 16 tasks and made progress or partial completion on another four of those 16.
This means there were three assigned tasks that were not completed by the chamber. Those three tasks are:
.An annual report on business visits and providing written recommendations to improve local economic development activity.
.Develop a written plan for written, visual and social media economic development activity/marketing.
.Maintain list of available Platte City commercial/retail spaces in the regional commercial/retail property database.
CHANGES IN THE
Gehrt said the most significant changes in the scope of work for a proposed new deal with the chamber compared to the 2017 agreement are:
.Making a revision to the task of maintaining a list of available commercial property. The chamber will still be required to update and disseminate the list of available commercial property but would no longer be required to maintain this list on the regional Sychronicity database system.
.Maintaining the requirement for 12 business assist visits per year, but specifying that six visits must be made to businesses who are not chamber members.
.Specifying the chamber’s involvement with the annual Cops and Kids event (or comparable police department community involvement event).
.Requiring the chamber to organize and conduct at least three downtown community events, one of which must be the Holiday Lighting Ceremony, which has traditionally been held on the night before Thanksgiving.
“The city does not have sufficient staff capacity to perform the scope of work in this agreement and the city costs would far exceed the agreement amount if it was necessary to perform the scope of work with additional city staff positions,” Gehrt said.
“The city currently has very little vacant commercial space, and sales and use tax revenues are at all-time highs,” Gerht said. “However, barring a significant analytical effort it is impossible to determine how these conditions have been impacted, either positively or negatively, by the city/chamber economic development effort.”