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STAFF WRITER CONNIE SWINNEY

MARBLE FALLS — City leaders have proposed a new position, potentially funded with a combination of city, sales, and tourism dollars, that will be involved in coordinating and organizing activities and improvements for downtown Marble Falls business owners and event planners.

The proposed “downtown coordinator” position would pay $65,000 per year and would fulfill one of the goals of the city of Marble Falls’s long-term downtown master plan, Marble Falls Assistant City Manager Caleb Kraenzel said.

“It’s a position for the community to more closely collaborate and communicate and coordinate activities in the downtown area,” Kraenzel said. “It could be a coordination between the (Marble Falls/Lake LBJ Chamber of Commerce) and the city on events.

“It could be business recruitment retention, a specific tenant space needing a specific user. It could be landscaping maintenance, downtown banners,” he added. “An ideal scenario — what most cities do — there’s a designated individual, whether it’s a downtown or Main Street coordinator, who is a go-to person both for the businesses and for the city staff.”

The city (property tax funds), the Marble Falls Economic Development Corp. (sales tax funding), and the hotel/motel tax fees could contribute to the salary.

“We’re still working on that. There is a combination of funds that would be proposed as far as how it would be funded,” Kraenzel said. “We proposed it to be funded at the mid-year point of the budget, so not in the initial budget that’s being presented to the council.

“It’s really going through what is the job duties and (determining) is it eligible for those funding sources to contribute to that payroll,” Kraenzel added.

A downtown coordinator could act as a “conduit” in recommending city involvement connected to future development such as the proposed hotel/conference center adjacent to Lakeside Park as well as the current desires of downtown businesses.

“This is a culmination of not just investing in the downtown area but … having someone to champion it. This person would be facilitating at an organizational and planning level,” Kraenzel said. “They may not be at the execution phase of construction, per se, but they might say, ‘I’ve seen 20 people in the course of the last two weeks walking between River City (Grille) and Main Street. Is there any way we could set a priority of a sidewalk between those two facilities?’”

A proposed new hire would potentially answer to city administrative staff.

“We still have a lot of details to work out on it, but probably having (the hire) join my team so I have parks, public works, development services, and engineering,” Kraenzel said. “If that person were a part of that team, it would make sense as far as the collaboration with the infrastructure side of things. The best course of action would be for it to be a city position.”

connie@thepicayune.com

5 thoughts on “Marble Falls mulls $65,000-a-year ‘downtown coordinator’ job

  1. Steve,
    Want is a loaded word. The city has bent over backwards for the downtown business district over the past 10+ years already. I would certainly want to see what the amount of tax revenue the MSD brings in specifically, what might the potential be for the district going forward and gauge this in relation to any additional coordinator.
    Further, from my perspective, there are too many blurred lines currently between the responsibilities of the EDC, Chamber and the CVB coordinator. With so many already focused on the business community I’d struggle to justify another.

  2. $65k for this … really?
    Is it necessary?
    What background or talents are required?
    How does that salary compare to similar positions (if any) in comparable size towns.

  3. The context of this article is misleading. The wording “proposed” is a false hood and should be retracted.
    While this position has been a talking point for several years, mostly within the H.O.T. sub-committee, it has certainly not been proposed by anyone elected as far as I’m aware.
    The more accurate wording is “discussed”, which in context is a far cry from proposed.

    Dave Rhodes – MF Council Member

    1. As a council member is this something you would want? Would you vote to make it happen? If it does happen then the funding for such a position should come from the business owners in the MSD seing as the title says Downtown coordinator.

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