Logansport officials are going to try again at encouraging economic development by paying for local businesses' guests at the city's golf course after the offer drew no takers last year.
City council passed a resolution 6-1 on April 3 allocating $4,000 from the city's County Economic Development Income Tax, or CEDIT, fund to be used at Dykeman Municipal Golf Course.
CEDIT reimbursements to the course "will be available for guests of local businesses with more than 10 full-time employees on any weekday," except Thursdays, according to the ordinance. Holidays are included, the ordinance continues, adding play has to involve four players. The offer lasts from April 4 through Oct. 31 and limits businesses to five foursomes or at city council's and Dykeman pro Dean Vietti's discretion. The offer excludes participation in corporate-sponsored tournaments.
The resolution calls Dykeman Park Municipal Golf Course a place business leaders visit "as part of their ongoing interaction with new clients and potential customers" and states the council desires "to promote both economic development and the use of the city's own golf course."
City council passed the same measure in May 2016 but nobusinesses took advantage of the funds.
Council members Amy Densborn, Terry Doran, Larry Hood, Dave Morris, Joe Ness and Teresa Popejoy voted in favor Monday while Matt Meagher voted against.
Densborn, who chairs the council's parks and recreation committee, said during the meeting that her support stemmed from conversations with Vietti, Logansport Parks Administrator Marc Vendl and Cass-Logansport Economic Development Director Bill Cuppy, who indicated they would do more to promote the opportunity and educate local businesses on it.
Ness said the proposal is worth attempting again.
"I'm not against trying it one more year," he said. "If it doesn't happen, then do away with it."
"That was my take — try it one more year and see if we can't make a go of it," he said.
Doran, who voted against the measure in 2016, said after Monday's meeting that Densborn's and Vendl's support for it helped change his stance along with this year's earlier start on the offer.
"If [businesses] don't use it again, we're not out anything, it's that simple," Doran said.
Mayor Dave Kitchell expressed his support for the resolution during the meeting as well.
"I think it's just another tool Bill Cuppy has if he needs it," Kitchell said. "We don't lose any money out of it... Last year it was kind of new, we didn't do it till the middle of the spring, so there wasn't much time to do any education to the public about this, or businesses."
Meagher said during the meeting that he does not support the resolution because of the lack of interest in 2016.
"No one used it last year, it didn't really function as expected," he said. "Nobody seemed to have a lot of expectation that it's going to be used again this year, which means that it has failed to promote either the golf course or economic development.
"If we're going to use [$4,000] that we didn't budget for those purposes, I think there are better ways of doing it," Meagher added.