Friday, October 29, 2010

At last, a united marketing decision

Sun Valley approves $400K for alliance


By TREVON MILLIARD
Express Staff Writer

The previously bifurcated Sun Valley City Council at last united in support of the Sun Valley Marketing Alliance on Thursday, voting unanimously in favor of funding it to the tune of $400,000.

The money will be handed out in quarterly installments. Before the first check can be written, a contract needs to be drawn up detailing exactly how the money will be spent, which is expected to come in a week or two.

Councilmen Bob Youngman and Nils Ribi have stood vehemently opposed to the alliance ever since it was created in mid-September by merging the Sun Valley Marketing Board with the Sun Valley-Ketchum Chamber & Visitors Bureau to form the organization. They said the new structure would prove unsuccessful and wanted the chamber separated or beneath the marketing board.

Ribi and Youngman crossed back over the line on Thursday and now support the alliance because of a new structure conceived in a closed-door meeting of Ketchum and Sun Valley mayors and two council members from each city held on Tuesday.

Under the new structure, the alliance's structure would still just be one organization consisting of both the originally conceived marketing board and a reconfigured chamber board. The change is that the marketing board will sit at the top of the organization, with the chamber board below it and only advisory. The marketing board would oversee a CEO hired to lead all marketing. This CEO's job would also entail overseeing the chamber of commerce's general manager in charge of the visitor center, event planning and customer satisfaction.

The Ketchum City Council will consider the same resolution Monday, which would also entail quarterly payments totaling $400,000 for the year.

Express staff member Ben Varner contributed to this report.

Trevon Milliard: tmilliard@mtexpress.com




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