Entries Tagged 'Tourism' ↓

We know who wants to keep the BID tax review meetings held in secrecy

Here we go again, the most transparent administration in city history hiding behind ‘supposed’ rules. City Attorney, Loophole David Fiddle-Faddle lays it out for us;

Pfeifle said in an email last week that ad-hoc advisory committees do not fall under the umbrella of open meeting rules prescribed in state statute and city charter. Whether or not the meetings are open, he said, will be at the discretion of the review committee.

Oh, Fiddle, then why don’t you advise them to keep them open, heck, even offer them Carnegie Hall for the meetings, or maybe we should hide the meetings on the back nine at Elmwood like they do with the Parks Board meetings.

“There shouldn’t be any secrets, so what’s to hide? I don’t know why it would be closed,” she said.

Because ‘Hizzoner’ is probably requesting it. This way, nobody from the public or from the hotel industry can challenge the decisions being made. But the finance director has a better excuse;

“One of the advantages of having a closed room meeting is people are often times less inhibited about having free and open discussion,” Turbak said.

Yeah, that’s what Hitler used to tell his Generals. Oh, and the irony of him suggesting the discussion will be more open and free by not making it open and free. WTF?

I will compare this to an experience I had last week at the SF City Council working session. During the course of the meeting I listened to the ideas being thrown around by the council, then was allowed to comment on a couple of them. By allowing my comment and one from my cameraman, the council came up with some new ideas about the free pool passes and how EBT cards work. Imagine that, having an open public meeting where the public can listen and make suggestions.

But hey, that’s not how things work in a dictatorship. Give me the money! That is the only thing the mayor wants to hear at the end of the day.

To their credit though, it seems some members of the review board want the meeting to be open to the public;

“I’m an individual who always believes in being open and transparent,” said Tom Bosch, a review committee member who spent 14 years as the general manager of Holiday Inn Sioux Falls before taking a role at Avera McKennan. “I’d be in favor at this point, unless I hear a reason otherwise, … to have it be an open meeting.”

Paul Schiller, another person expected to aid in the review, agreed.

“I wouldn’t have any problem keeping it open,” he said. “I’m hoping for a very open and honest debate going back and forth about how these funds are used.”

I guess we will see how this shakes down.

Maybe the BID tax needs an audit instead of a spending review?

While I support continuing to use the BID tax on promoting Sioux Falls and NOT on brick and mortar projects, I found this tidbit of information interesting;


Administrative – $766,855, Sales Development – $669,943, Tourism promotion – $263,402

Instead reviewing the program to see how the mayor can pilfer money from it, maybe they need an independent audit instead. I find the administrative costs to be very high compared to what is actually spent on promotion. Maybe that is the real reason they want to look at it? But if that is the case, like I said, I would prefer an accountant breaking those expenses down and not a hand-picked, rubber stamp group the mayor picks.

and the Biggest Waste of Taxpayer Money Ever is….

I can't even say how stupid I think NASA is...

How can we justify $100 BILLION for lunar missions in the next decade?

Someone PLEASE enlighten me on this? IMHO, we should take half and explore the oceans, and the other half to bomb the middle east. At the very least NASA should sell advertising on their booster rockets.. Mountain Dew, Nike, Travelocity, Trojan Condoms….

Monday Morning Quick Picks

I guess the state spending millions on tourism contracts that are ineffective is a better use of  tax payer money then paying a couple state maintenence workers and HI-PO’s a little overtime;

Nonprofit groups no longer can host events at interstate rest stops after officials with the state Department of Transportation decided they are too much hassle.


The decision means the Sioux Falls Convention and Visitors Bureau won’t be allowed to stage “welcome” events for out-of-state visitors. For years, the group has hosted events – typically at the Interstate 90 rest stop at Valley Springs – to promote South Dakota and Sioux Falls.

Maybe it costs too little, and that’s why the state wants to do away with it . . .

Steel Trap ipod

In a state where tourism plays a big role in the economy, Ellis Schmidt thinks it’s in South Dakota’s interest to continue the practice. The events are inexpensive, usually costing the bureau about $100.

“That’s a pretty cheap way to touch a couple thousand people in a day,” she said.

And of course, representative Krebs found a way to spin the situation to make the state look good:

“Is it smart to have engineers picking up garbage? I don’t think that’s a good use of taxpayer money.”

You are right, why would engineers be picking up trash? Maybe the state should look into that?

Pastor(?) Steve DooHickey is still crazy – President Obortion? WTF?

And I see the school district is still in a state of denial over the failure of super precincts.

Former Sioux Falls School Board member Sam Amato also thought the turnout would be higher.


“I was thinking about 8 percent,” he said.

Amato said he went to his normal voting precinct and “it took me 10 to 15 minutes to figure out where I voted.” He called the auditor. Two Can Play That Game ipod “They were able to help. But over the years, I have never seen anything close to being this bad,” he said.

Obviously when have a former school board member who can’t even find his precinct, you gots problems. But as usual with the school district, don’t blame the obvious.