Public meeting called to mull future of convention center
Published: December 9,2013
OXFORD — The city of Oxford is planning a public meeting for Dec. 17 about the future of a local convention center.
The city took back control of the Oxford Conference Center in November from the Oxford Tourism Council. Mayor Pat Patterson said at that time that no decisions had been made as to its future.
Patterson said he had originally planned on setting up the meeting in January but due to rumors and “misinformation,” he decided the meeting needed to be held sooner.
The Oxford Eagle reports that the conference center, built in 2004, has been losing several hundred thousand dollars a year in revenue, although the loss has declined in recent years. The center has lost an average of about $350,000 in the past two fiscal years.
While conference centers nationwide are never considered big money makers, some believe other benefits to the city could outweigh the costs of operation.
Aldermen asked City Clerk Lisa Carwyle to bring to the public hearing figures on the revenue, costs and projected amounts of tourism tax the conference center may bring into the city.
“Some believe we’re getting our money back on overnight hotel stays and 2 percent food and beverage tax but my belief is we aren’t making it back,” said alderwoman Robyn Tannehill. “But we need to have all this information for the public if they ask questions.”
Patterson said the $350,000 the city spends each year running the center could be spent on several other community projects. He said no decision on whether to close the center has been made and all options are being considered, including whether it can be leased or sold to other entities.
To sign up for Mississippi Business Daily Updates, click here.
Top Posts & Pages
- Warden who lives hundreds of miles from jail resigns
- BankPlus recognized for alternative program to payday lending
- Jail kitchen supervisor pleads guilty to stealing food
- (UPDATE) Gov. Bryant: $1.2 billion aluminum plant is a very exciting proposition for the state of Mississippi
- Analyst: KiOR Columbus plant may end up sold as scrap
- Top 10 finalists chosen for C Spire Conerly Trophy
- Prison-contract task force working in wake of Epps' indictment
- Stricklin: Deer parasites don't affect quality of venison
- Bryant wants free tuition for students with technical diploma