The Ottumwa Courier

January 21, 2014

Presentations headline City Council meeting

Courier staff writer

---- — OTTUMWA — The regular meeting of the Ottumwa City Council Tuesday night had some unique presentations to add to what was otherwise a meeting dominated by construction projects.

Before the city departments made recommendations to the council there was a presentation made by Bridge View Center Inc., as well as a Bridge View Center report about the first six months of the current fiscal year.

Bridge View Center Inc., represented by Board President Dale Uehling, was on hand to deliver a $50,000 check to the City of Ottumwa. The check came from the endowment fund that was created when the Bridge View Center was constructed in 2007. In order to get funds for its construction, Bridge View Center Inc. promised to maintain a $2 million endowment fund, and when the income of the Bridge View Center is over a certain percentage at the first of each year a check is awarded to the city.

“The idea was to create a growing stream of income … and supplement the income from Bridge View Center for the loss,” Uehling said during the presentation Tuesday.

Bridge View Center Director Larry Gawronski was also on hand to give a report on the first half of the current fiscal year (July-December, 2013) for BVC.

In his report, Gawronski gave an attendance report and the economic impact of each event type, as well as the total economic impact that has been felt from the events at the Bridge View Center over the first six months of the current fiscal year.

From July until December of 2013, BVC had 336 event use days, with a total attendance of 47,211 people for all of the events in that six month time frame. The total economic impact over that six month period, which is basically what all is being spent in Ottumwa because of events at the Bridge View Center, was $894,430.

According to Gawronski’s presentation, the six-month period of every fiscal year is always January until June, so the numbers should be even better for the second half of the fiscal year.

Market on Main Project Director Heather Ware was also in attendance for the meeting in order to give a report and hold a public hearing on the Market on Main project.

A presentation to City Council and public hearing was required because Community Development Block Grant that was awarded in 2010 for the assistance of funding for the project, which totals approximately $1.6 million.

Ware presented the goals and scope of the project to councilmembers, and also mentioned that the project should hopefully be 100 percent completed in April of this year. As of right now, Market on Main is approximately 75 percent finished, so there is still work to be done but the project is taking form.

— To see reporter Josh Vardaman's Twitter feed, go to @CourierJosh