One such suggestion was the formation of a civic foundation for
the city. The thoughts at the time were that the city needed a way
to fund certain community activities and support local initiatives
without stressing the general funds used for daily operations of the
city. It was suggested at that time, that a portion of the city’s
newly acquired Hotel/Motel tax monies could be held by the city and
placed in that foundation.
There were also sidebar discussions during the breakout sessions in
2015 where then Mayor Keith Snyder along with City Administrator
Clay Johnson talked about how a foundation could be a vehicle for
citizens to make charitable donations to the city.
While the idea didn’t make it into the strategic plan, it did not
When the council met later in the month to formulate a budget for
the 2015-16 fiscal year, it was determined that the city would
withhold five percent of the Hotel/Motel tax to form a Civic
Foundation. The other 95 percent of the funding would be passed
through to the Logan County Tourism Bureau.
On Saturday, Johnson brought before the council and city department
heads a suggestion to move forward with the foundation as planned,
and also a suggestion as to how at least some of the money in the
foundation could be used to support city-sponsored events during the
As Johnson began describing the idea, he emphasized that it was not
a concrete plan, only an idea that the council could mull on and
consider. If they wanted to go forward with the plan, there were
steps involved in reaching the end goal that included setting up the
In the suggestion, Johnson said the city could host “Third Friday
Downtown.” This would be a smaller, festival type event, held on the
square on the third Friday of May, June, July, August, and
Johnson said each event could have a theme. As examples - a family
game night, a movie night, summer fun night, adventure night, and a
Each Friday event would have multiple components including live
music, activities and food. Johnson handed out a list of ideas that
included suggestions for each of these components.
As he talked about the idea, Johnson said that the goal was to
provide a fun activity for the people of Lincoln and Logan County
that would at the same time bring people to the downtown area.
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In addition to funding a summer night event, Johnson said that the foundation
could be used as a means to support the bike trails. He noted that there had
been conversations with the Abraham Lincoln Healthcare Foundation and the Bike
Trails Committee, and it was agreed that the city could use the foundation as
the funding source for the bike trails initiatives.
Tracy Welch asked if the foundation would be a 501(C)3 not-for-profit. Johnson
said that it would be, and that is part of the work that will need to be done.
He went on to say that the foundation will need to be incorporated, and there
will need to be a board of directors.
Looking at the suggested months of the summer when events will be held, Steve
Parrott asked why there was nothing planned for October. Johnson said there were
two reasons, first weather condition, as by the third Friday in October the
weather can be very unreliable. Also, funding, as the schedule of events would
need to be held and paid for by the dollars allotted from the Hotel/Motel Tax.
Johnson wrapped up the presentation saying that this was only a suggestion for
the council to consider. He encouraged them to “marinate” on the idea, and if
they decided they wanted to make it concrete, he would get the process started.
Strategic Plan 2.0