To attract big gigs to town, the District of Squamish needs one head honcho, states a report to council.
Since June, municipal staff have fielded feedback on its special events policy, a plan that aims to streamline the process for those planning concerts, races and other events in Squamish. An online survey was set up and interviews held with stakeholders. Now with the input compiled, there’s one big message coming through — the district needs an events coordinator.
“An events coordinator would be a one-stop shop for event and tournament organizers enhancing our customer service and improving our capacity to improve existing events and attract more events to Squamish,” the community and development services report stated.
The new position could also oversee filming in town, an industry that poured more than $1 million into the community’s economy through the filming of the Twilight series alone, the report noted.
Giving prominence to the task would ensure a more concentrated approach versus the current situation of having multiple staff work on events off the side of their desks, district spokesperson Christina Moore wrote in an email to The Chief.
“This position would serve to provide a single point of contract for event producers, and enable a more strategic approach to this important growing industry in Squamish,” she stated.
Staff recommended council consider funding the position in the 2013 budget.
Survey respondents were split on a flat fee versus an escalating rate based on numbers of participants, the report noted. Ninety-one per cent of respondents suggested there should be a minimal or no charge for charitable organizations, while 64 per cent of respondents suggested a similar approach for youth groups.
District employees are considering a flat fee for parades and street events, where the number of participants is difficult to measure. The report also recommends a reduced rate for a series of events, streamlining the process for repeat applicants and reducing the charge to book multiple venues for events.
District staff is incorporating the feedback from the 64 completed questionnaires and the 14 interviews into the final draft of the special events policy.