Entries Tagged 'Event Center' ↓
May 8th, 2013 — Event Center, SF City Council, Sioux Falls
Director Cooper says we have to ‘Start Over’.
Not sure if you watched the SF City Council meeting last night, but you missed a doozy. (FF to 52:00)
Mike Cooper pretty much throws the Shape SF petitioners under the bus. He drags his community development manager up to the podium to cry about how senior low-income housing is being delayed due to going back to the old zoning laws. While the CD Manager admits during his testimony they have been working on funding this project for several years, (Remember, Shape SF just passed the city council last month) When Director Cooper is asked by Councilor Anderson if this project was in the works before Shape SF passed, Cooper says , ‘NO!’ To which Anderson just shakes his head. Then Cooper says, “Ah, we were in a transition period.” Now I am not saying Cooper is lying, but . . . . It seems the planning office ‘just assumed’ Shape SF would pass, so they started using the new ordinance before it was voted on by the council. And I thought I was good at predicting the city council, looks like Cooper has me beat.
It seems the city has started their ‘Hater’ campaign against the petitioners to.
Film Projector, A ‘City Council’ expense?
If you look at ITEM #44, 1st Reading, you will see that the council is appropriating the $1.8 million dollar surplus. Cleverly hidden under a ‘City Council’ expense is $63,000 for a film projector, for THE STATE THEATRE. While I am extremely supportive of the State Theatre and the asset it will be DT, I am a little weary about buying them a projector since the Theatre has established itself already as a non-public entity (not owned by the city). The city has already given a gracious gift to help make repairs to the building. I think the State will do just fine without any more handouts from the city. I do know that councilors Staggers and Anderson plan to amend this expense in the 2nd reading.
No Hotel, No small meeting rooms but lots of excuses
Gotta love the CVB. On the run up to building the EC they were cheerleaders about how we need a larger entertainment facility to bring in bigger conventions. Now that the building is being constructed they are back to more excuses, NO second-site HOTEL, Convention center needs more small meeting rooms, blah, blah, blah. Here’s the deal folks, we don’t need a bigger convention center and we certainly don’t need a 12,000 seat EC. But hey, when the subsidies start piling up we will at least have plenty of excuses.
May 3rd, 2013 — Event Center, Sioux Falls, Washington Pavilion
Not sure if you caught the story in the AL today about the Pavilion’s financials in 2012, but it didn’t paint a pretty picture about entertainment facilities in this town. Normally, the Great Hall at the Pavilion is a good money maker for them. Not so much last year. Ticket sales were down $290,000 in 2012 compared to 2011. Remember, this is a 1,900 seat facility, not a 12,000 seat facility.
My concerns about building a new Event Center has always been about how much we will have to support it. The Pavilion gets a $1.4 million dollar subsidy from the city each year. Can you imagine what kind of subsidy we will have to throw towards the Event Center?
I was talking to a local ‘journalist’ the other day about the possibility of Huether’s 2nd mayoral term (I still think he is running for governor, or at least exploring it). The one ‘good’ thing about a 2nd reign of terror by Huether is that when the subsidy numbers start rolling in, he would be in the middle of his second term, and he will have to do a lot of explaining about the profitability of the Event Center.
Can the EC do better then the Pavilion? Sure. But the Pavilion has been around for 12 years, and when your ‘money maker’ within your facility takes a hit like $290,000 in one year due to low ticket sales, you have to start questioning if the ticket sales will be there with the EC.
I felt all along we should have just dumped $20 million into the existing Arena and remodel it to look like a new facility instead of building an over-sized new facility.
You also have to factor in all the other competing sports entertainment facility that are popping up around town like pimples on a teenagers face. This will take sales away from the EC to.
We should have seen this a mile away.
March 27th, 2013 — Event Center, SF City Council, Sioux Falls
Director Smith touches on the subject at the city council informational meeting yesterday (FF: 25:00). Councilor Jamison suggested that they should have used a lottery system instead of first come, first serve in selling club seats. Which makes sense, this is how the city sells liquor licenses. It is not complicated, and by all accounts it is fair. And if you are chosen, and don’t have the money to pony up, you draw the next name. Seems simple? Right?
Smith does his best to make the ‘lottery system’ sound complicated. He goes into a mundane diatribe about making company names public (who are in the supposed drawing) and getting a ‘deposit’. Blah, Blah, Blah.
There is no reason the names would have to be made public in the drawing, there is also no reason they would have to make a deposit, I think a simple credit application would do. And since these club seats were so popular, as I said above, if you draw a name, and they don’t have the money, you draw another name.
Why do I think they didn’t use the lottery system? I have a feeling those club box sales kinda went down like the naming rights contract.
Pre-determined? Perhaps? We may never know, as councilor Jamison points out.
Jamison reminds Smith about ‘transparency’ and how it has kinda been lacking in this process with the city council. To which Smith replies, “We had a press conference announcing they were for sale.”
Rich. Real Rich, Darrin.
October 23rd, 2012 — Event Center, Sioux Falls
The mayor has sent out this letter and survey. I find it interesting that once you complete the survey it takes you to the SF Chamber of Commerce page.
The interesting part about this meeting is how the city caters to the big wheels in this town, CONVENIENTLY holding this meeting at 7:30 AM on a Tuesday so it doesn’t interfere with anybody’s work schedule, and having it early enough in the morning so maybe none of the working stiffs in this town will notice. I also did a search on the city website to see if I could find a public notice about this meeting. No such luck.
Funny how the city can find time to have a meeting like this that is not on their 9-4 PM schedule, but when it comes to government meetings like the informational or the charter revision, they have them in the middle of the afternoon when NO ONE can attend. I guess when they are legislating and making rules and laws that effect the general public, they don’t want you to attend.
Click here if you would still like to participate in the survey about the Events Center. We would greatly appreciate your feeedback!
October 19th, 2012 — Event Center, Sioux Falls
We are already seeing it, parking problems at the arena site. The city was warned about this even before the new Event Center location was chosen. What can we expect when the Event Center opens it’s doors? Shuttle buses?
To eliminate congestion there will be a free shuttle service running from the Sioux Empire Fairgrounds to the arena complex.
Some may ask why a parking ramp was not included in the new EC plan? In fact I asked the question at a council meeting. Crickets. One can assume it would have added too much to the price-tag of the the EC, which would have made it more difficult to sell the idea.
Let’s face it, a parking ramp makes sense, and you could charge patrons to use it. Would you be willing to pay a few bucks so you could walk a couple of 100 feet from your car into a warm elevator into the EC? Of course you would.
It’s about perception. Huether promised us the EC wouldn’t cost more then 100 million, adding a parking ramp could add up to $20 million to the project.
My assumption was that the mayor and his staff decided to kick the can down the road. Rumor has it that there was even a joke about it circulating around city hall with his inner staff.
How would we pay for this ramp? Bonding of course was the inevitable punchline.
Prepare yourself, because if you think we can build this facility for $115 million, you took the bait, hook, line and sinker. A parking ramp will be built in a few years, and we will have another ‘unexpected’ expense for the EC.
*I also heard from an insider that the city has been shifting around capital/enterprise funds for sewer, water, infrastructure etc. to help pay for construction of the EC that is not included in the bond loan. Of course, this is something I feared would happen when they were raising water and sewer rates (enterprise funds). The claim is that the money is only being used to link up to the EC . . . yeah . . . right. Would love to hear more detail on this rumor from the most transparent city hall we have ever had
August 20th, 2012 — Event Center
Don’t get me wrong, that is what the fund is for, (Item #33) in fact, I think the entertainment tax should be raised to pay off the bonds for the EC. It didn’t surprise me that the mayor wasted no time tapping the entertainment tax for Denny’s Grand Slam Premier Center before we have even broke ground.
Get ready good folks of Sioux Falls, you are going to see this mayor try to pull funds out of every cookie jar he can find in city hall to build this place. He’ll probably even try to take bottle caps and box tops from the employee break room.
August 13th, 2012 — Event Center, Sioux Falls
Just another ‘secret’ Sanford events center meeting
I have been following the Events Center debate for years. But not until the recent final push to name the place after Sanford do the puzzle pieces come into place.
While we can all sit around and wonder if Sanford’s name was going to be on this place all along, I want to share these tidbits with you. You can draw your own conclusions . . .
Did you know that there was a get-out-the-vote (secret) committee within Sanford? Some of the member’s may or may not have included Dave and De Knudson, councilor (former) chair Sue Aguliar, Sanford volunteer coordinator Nona Bixler, wife of David Bixler, financial and budget analyst for the SF city council. It is also assumed that councilor Jim Entenman was involved since he sits on the Sanford board of trustees.
It is also very peculiar that the SF finance department’s director, Tracy Turbak, was in charge of the EC election. Municipal elections are typically handled by the city clerk. In light of the fact that former city clerk, Debra Owen was terminated right before the election it makes it even more peculiar. Especially when you consider that former county auditor (an expert of local elections) was named interim city clerk after Owen left, and she wasn’t asked to run the election. Why?
Having a secret get-out-the-vote committee isn’t that big of deal, actually I commend their efforts, though I disagree with what they were selling the public.
What makes it a big deal is that these same people are dictating whose name gets to be on the side of the building. Dave Knudson, VP and chief legal advisor to Sanford wrote the naming rights contract based on a series of ‘supposed’ secret meetings with a secret committee which might have been comprised of the same people that sat on the secret get-out-the-vote committee.
But as councilor Tex Golfing said in the recent EC contract working session, “There is a difference between ‘secret‘ meetings and ‘private’ meetings. These were ‘private’ meetings.”
The smoke couldn’t get any thicker.
August 8th, 2012 — Event Center, SF City Council, Sioux Falls
Image: Dave Knudson
Besides the fact that the council is not allowed to make changes to the contract, I found Dave’s statement yesterday during the working session meeting a bit odd (watch the entire meeting);
“We were very surprised to discover last Thursday that we were the only group to submit a bid,” Sanford Health Vice President Dave Knudson said.
What?! Was Dave told that by Smith and the Mayor or is he just flat out misleading the public and council?
On the day of the announcement of the naming rights, the councilors and members of the media were handed a packet that said that there were other companies that had interest in naming rights;
First Dakota Bank
It is also well known that ONE of these entities did make an offer. Rumor has it was around $400,000 a year for 20 years, obviously not even close to Sanford’s offer, BUT, still an offer. What would be the harm in mentioning that an offer was made, without saying who it was?
As Huether was rumored to say at the CNA Surety building ribbon cutting, (Paraphrasing) “There some deals made the public cannot be let in on.” (and have to be made behind closed doors)
Who needs transparency when we have leaders like this? Huh?
COPY OF AGREEMENT: dennyt
August 6th, 2012 — Event Center, Sioux Falls
Well, I am glad somebody was finally listening. On Thursday, August 2, I said this about the naming rights process;
So now that the cat is out of the bag, we still have to go into a secret meeting to discuss the contract? This should be an open meeting to the public, not behind closed doors.
Now we hear this;
Earlier this week, the council had proposed an executive session to further review the events center naming rights contract. The work session is being held in place of executive session.
Yup, since we got our way already, we thought it would be okay for the public to see the contract.
August 5th, 2012 — Event Center, Sanford Hospital, SF City Council, Sioux Falls
Sanford Rezoning and Elementary School Closures, are on the agenda for the upcoming Board of Historic Preservation meeting.
The meeting is Wednesday, August 8th at 4:00, First Floor Commission Room, City Hall.
I watched the Sanford rezoning issue being addressed at the last Planning Commission meeting. Many residents voiced concerns, one of the main concerns was building flat parking instead of a parking ramp. It is blatantly obvious why Sanford builds flat parking lots, they are easy to tear up when they are expanding. While I agree the residents have a good gripe about it, this is just a good business decision by Sanford. But what amazes me is how PC member Jessie (Pins) Schmidt told the one resident suggesting parking ramps that it wasn’t their job to give Sanford an opinion on how they use the land just if they were using the land properly. Huh? The resident told her that it was THEIR job to suggest to Sanford that they submit other plans, or deny the request. We all know this comes down to money. Sanford has it, these homeowners do not. Planning Commission recommends approval. Go figure.
There is also a plan to record and televise the council’s working session on Wednesday in which they will discuss the Events Center. This is unusual because they have never televised these meetings.
Mayor’s Event Center Staff Presentation by Darrin Smith, Director of Community Development/Public Parking