Showing posts with label Pony Palace. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pony Palace. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

How's the Event Center Doing???

Addendum May 22, answers to some questions included below
           (Apparently, It's doing "better than it was.")

After ten years and a several million dollar investment, many wonder how's it doing (for the taxpayers)?    (Click here to See Some 12 year old History)     (It wasn't several.  How much was it? Maybe a few.  How much is a few?  Less than several)

For many years, we've been told that the County Council (aka Parks and Rec SSD Board) receive periodic reports about the events.   For many years, a profit and loss or revenue and expenditure statement has been requested.    A few promises, but no results.

A couple of months ago, an additional request was made to get the revenues and expenditures for each event held over the last year of so.  The response was revenues would be easy, but expenses are harder to define to each individual event.   The request was modified to ask about providing it within six months.

About two weeks later, some revenues were given, with the comment that the public should really have all of this information and they would work to get it made available.   As usual, the data raised a few questions.     Data was provided for not only EVENTS, but, apparently, the entire Event Center/Rodeo Complex.  A summary of the data is presented here:

2012 2013 1st qtr 2014
Outdoor Facility $1,500.00 $3,900.00
Shavings $2,894.25 $1,940.00 $440.00
Stall Rentals $11,803.00 $28,306.85 $2,380.00
Ride Passes $192.00 $1,677.00 $1,175.00
Misc Revenue $1,535.00 $5,491.00 $1,964.05
Events $28,324.50 $77,994.50 $11,265.00
Cowboy City (RV park) $470.00 $6,005.00
Concessions $10,009.67 $5,384.72
Advert Sponsor
Sponsorship & Advertising
$59,590.00 $7,812.00

Totals $56,728.42 $197,882.07 $25,036.05

On May 4, this Email was sent, with a few of the questions:

"Thank you for the revenue data.  I had actually requested a profit and loss statement for individual events over the last couple years, but this was also of interest.

hopefully you can enlighten me, as I assume you would have an idea about these items:

  • If the revenues were only $57K in 2011, what  were they in previous years?
    1. The event complex was put into the parks and recreation department in 2011 and only have records from that time forward.
  • How much has been invested in the Event Center?  (They are working on that one, see the History 
  • What caused the LARGE increase from 2012 to 13?  What caused the event revenue increase?
    • More events, larger events. Started an advertising and sponsorship program for businesses to advertise at events and the Events Complex on a yearly basis. Wasatch County parks and Recreation received monies from TRRT for two (2) large events. The Wilderness Circuit Rodeo Finals and the Professional Bull Riders event along with percentages of tickets sales from these events.
  • What was the cost of the marketing?   Where are those cost in the budget?
    1. The cost are on an event by event basis. The Mountain Valley Stampede has an advertising budget the County Fair has an advertising budget. They are listed as advertising in the area of the budget listed Rodeo and County Fair. Events are required to pay for their own advertising for their specific event. Wasatch County Parks and Recreation does not pay for advertising for event that are not Wasatch County Parks and Recreation sponsored events. Events may apply for grants thru the Wasatch County Tax advisory Board for advertising their events.
  • Why did the concession revenue drop drastically? 12 to 13?
    1. The concessionaire contract expired at that the end of 2012. The previous concessionaire was paying 15% of gross income. An RFP was put out and the new concessionaire that received the bid is required to pay 8% in the new contract. Midway Food Services was awarded the bid from the Wasatch County Parks and Recreation Board and the new contract to runs thru December 31, 2018.
  • When was Cowboy Village enlarged or improved, is that the cause of the 12/13 increase?
    1. Cowboy Village has not seen any capital improvements since it was completed. The revenue difference is from the LDS church. We rent the village to the church camp missionaries when they are unable to get up to the camp due to weather. In 2012 they did not need the village and in 2013 they paid $5640.00 for the services.
  • How many people are involved with "Ride Passes"?
    • No response
  • What's the difference between the two 'advert sponsor' and 'Sponsorship and Advertising' categories?  
    1. 1 is for the Event complex and 1 is for the Recreation Center. We just started the Recreation Center this year. The $7418.00 was put into the wrong account number and has been transferred to the correct account. The Event Center total for 2013 was $67008.00.
  • Is the increase in stall rentals due to new construction?    At what cost?
    1. We have not added any stalls on the Events Complex recently. The revenue increase is due to added and larger equestrian events. 
  • What are the projections for 2014?
    1. The adopted 2014 budget has projections as followed
    Revenue: $2,434,361.00
    Expenditures: $2,351,062.00
  • Does the P&R 2014 budget include all expenses and revenue for the event Center? 
    • If not, where is the Event center budget?
    • If so, how can it be determined? 
      1. Yes, The Wasatch County Events Complex is part of the Parks and Recreation budget as of January 1, 2012. It also includes Parks, Recreation, Recreation Center, Wasatch County Fair, Demolition Derby, Memorial Day Celebration and the Mountain Valley Stampede.
In searching for more info, I tried Transparent Utah, SAO audits, UASD,  the county website and, even, the Utah Public Meeting Notice website..  Could you tell me why there is no information from the Wasatch Parks and Rec SSD?  

  ("We obey all the laws.  We trust our managers."   answer, Trust - but,verify.   We have payroll on   answer, that's a private website.
I assume . . .  that you are familiar with the "Little Manual" for SSD's. "

Answers received May 22,  posted Above under each question :
  • PS: There ARE still 5 mos. to fulfill the 6 mo. request 
  • PPS:  The 2014 Parks and Rec SSD proposed budget is $2.4 Million (up 17% in one year) - For comparison, the entire COUNTY budget is $16.5 M (which does NOT include P&R, which is a separate government entity)
  • PPPS:   The proposed Aquatic Center will be under Parks and Rec. 

Thursday, January 30, 2003

Event Center Approval

Event Center History
Commission Minutes 3/25/02


Commissioner Provost indicated that a public hearing is not necessary in this matter is because the building is allowed in that zone and a public hearing was held when the zone went into effect. Mike Davis, speaking for Tom Bonner, addressed the commissioners and indicated that there is a real need for this facility and this location was best suited for the building. Mike Davis also indicated that other facilities throughout the state were visited so that Wasatch County could get a comparison and ideas and indicated that this will be the largest indoor arena in the State of Utah of its kind.

Commissioner Provost then asked if there is anyone that has a problem with this matter please come forward and state your name. Commissioner Kohler indicated that he has visited with Dwayne Meeks , a neighbor to this project who has a problem with the location and the noise. He indicated that he will monitor it to see how it affects the neighborhood.

Fred Schloss addressed the commissioners and indicated that he does not live by where the new facility will be built but was here speaking for the people who lived in that area and was concerned about how it would affect the people in the neighborhood, noise, traffic, influx of people in their neighborhood, parking, etc., and would like to see the facility put in another location in Wasatch County. The commissioners indicated that money is an issue and that is why it can’t be built in another location. The commissioners indicated that the facility will be paid by an revenue bond that will be paid back with impact fees and restaurant tax money. Commissioner Duke made a motion that we go out for bids for the building on the Wasatch County Special Events Center. Commissioner Kohler seconded the motion and the motion carries with the following vote:




Tom Bonner, Wasatch County Recreational Director, addressed the commissioners and indicated that he has received four bids. A.D. Construction for $438,400.00. Brownies Excavation $665,335.00. C0 Building Systems, $317,491.00. Atkinson Welding, $300,000.00. Commissioner Kohler made a motion that we approve them and to get Paul Wilson to help him review them. Commissioner Duke seconded the motion and the motion carries with the following vote:



Jon Bronson from Zions Bank addressed the commissioners and indicated that he is here regarding

a Parameters Resolution which lays out the proposed sales of bonds and in this particular case sales tax revenue bonds. John also indicated that this resolution is the first step in getting started for the issuance of a bond and the bonds would not be paid back with sales tax revenue. John also indicated that the Wasatch County Sales Tax is only being used for the collateral security for the bond issue. John indicated that this will just be the restaurant tax and impact fees, but not the TRRT tax. John also indicated that the collateral can be separated from the source of repayment. Commissioner Duke made the motion that we approve Resolution 02-10a, a resolution establishing parameters with respect to sales tax revenue bonds in the total amount of not more than $4,2000. Commissioner Kohler seconded the motion and the motion carries with the following vote:


A Resolution Authorizing the Issuance and Sale of Not More Than $4,200,000 Aggregate Principal Amount of Sales Tax Revenue Bonds, Series 2002 of Wasatch County, Utah for the Purpose of (1) Refunding the Outstanding Municipal Building Authority of Wasatch County, Utah Lease Revenue Bonds, Series 1998 and (2) Financing the Acquisition and Construction of a County Events Center and Related Improvements; Calling a Public Hearing and Establishing a Time, Place and Location for Said Public Hearing; Providing for Publication of a Notice of Public Hearing and Bonds to be Issued; Providing for a Pledge of Sales Tax Revenues for Repayment of the Bonds; Fixing the Maximum Aggregate Principal Amount of the Bonds, the Maximum Number of Years Over Which the Bonds May Mature, the Maximum Interest Rate Which the Bonds May Bear, and the Maximum Discount From Par at Which the Bonds May be Sold; Providing for the Running of a Contest Period; Expressing an Intent to Reimburse; and Related Matters


Jon Bronson addressed the commissioners and indicated that there was an error in the document last time and this revision just adds both the elements of the sales tax in the document that was adopted last meeting. We can now go ahead and advertise for the sales tax issue. Commissioner Provost then asked if there was any public comment regarding the matter. Commissioner Kohler made a resolution that we adopt Resolution No. 02-03. Commissioner Provost seconded the motion and the motion carries with the following vote:



County Attorney Derek Pullan indicated that the following three firms submitted bids for the architect and engineer for the event center:

Lythgoe Design Group, Inc.

George E. Bennett, Jr. Architectural Development

CD Design

Attorney Pullan stated that Lythgoe Design Group, Inc. was the low bidder, but their proposal included language of a cost plus arrangement which is unlawful. He indicated that the language would have to be eliminated and an exact proposed cost would have to be prepared. Commissioner Kohler made a motion to award the architect and engineering for the event center to low bidder Lythgoe Design Group, Inc. subject to making the language changes in the proposal as discussed above. Commissioner Duke seconded the motion and the motion carries with the following vote:




Jon Bronson from Zion’s Bank addressed the commissioners and indicated that this hearing is for the Commissioners to take any public comment and take it into consideration and no action is required other than to allow public comment on the bond issue. Jon indicated that the bond is being issued for two purposes, first is to refund a Series 1999 MBA Lease Revenue Bond on the issue to build a fire station and the other is to provide new money to build the new Events Center at the fairgrounds. Jon indicated that the bond is to be paid over 20 years. Jon indicated that the interest rate is in the neighborhood of 4.8 to 4.85 percent if the bonds were issued today. John indicated that the repayment will come from Transient Room Tax and basically the restaurant tax. Commissioner Provost then asked for any public comment.

Tish Dahmen from the Wasatch Wave commented that she understood that the Jordanelle Fire Station isn’t profitable, isn’t working at a profit and inquired about the bonds. Bronson indicated that the refunding of the bonds up at the Jordanelle Fire Station is to take advantage of lower interest rates. Bob Wren inquired about why put the two bonds together instead of having them separate. Jon Bronson indicated that it is better marketing advantage to put the two bonds together and also to obtain bond insurance and to a get a good rating on the bonds which right now they have a triple "A" rating. Tish Dahmen inquired if there was any donations made at this point. Commissioner Provost indicated that he wasn’t sure, but has been told that there has been some donations. He indicated he will probably be able to answer that in a day or two. Tish inquired about the bonding capacity of Wasatch County and what Wasatch County is in debt at the present time. Jon Bronson indicated that the county could issue approximately another 26 million dollars in general obligation debt. Jon indicated that the current debt of Wasatch County is 3.89 million and that is on the jail. Bob Wren inquired about whether the bond has to be paid off first before another bond can be issued. Jon indicated that the Non-Impairment Clause in the State of Utah takes care of the matter when the sales tax secures the repayment of the bonds. Bob Wren then inquired about putting the matter up for a bond election to find out what the people of Wasatch County wants to do. Commissioner Provost indicated that one of the reasons for not having a bond election is that the commissioners didn’t want to use property tax money because the bond was being run through sandwich tax money.

6/10/02 Unofficial Notes of Public Hearing on Bond issuance: Per Mike Kohler, the firepalace is being refinanced because Jordanelle Property Owners (JPO) were not keeping up with the 'promised' payments - of the 3 large payees, one paying slower, one went bankrupt (?) Jon Bronson (Zion's Bank Underwriter) responded to most of the questions. Refinancing will put the payments more in line with what is actually being rcvd. and get a lower interest rate (4.85%).
Q Is there a provision in the new bond saying JPO is responsible for repayment. A NO (If JPO fails to pay, responsibility falls to County (read taxpayers).
Q Why not hold an election on the bond? A We don't want to have to depend on the "whims" of the voters, and/or It costs money to hold an election.
Q There's an election on the library bond 6 Aug, why not vote then (no cost)? A They kind of skipped over that one.
Q Why not split the two issues (fire and convention)? A One bond issuance has lower underwriting costs or lenders do not want to deal with 'small' loans (<$ 4 to 5 million) or lower interest rates.
(Therefore we need to borrow more to save money.)
Q What is Wasatch current bonding capacity and debt? A $26 mill and $3.8 mill
Q Will the issuance of the bonds restrict future gov from using the Sales tax for something else? A NO, it only will require not canceling the sales tax.
Here's the law, what do you think it says? Are we protecting the taxpayers or the bank?:
UT code 11-14-17.5 (d) When any bonds payable from excise tax revenues have been issued, the resolution or other enactment of the governing body imposing the excise tax and pursuant to which the tax is being collected, the obligation of the governing body to continue to levy, collect, and allocate the excise tax, and to apply the revenues derived therefrom in accordance with the provisions of the authorizing resolution or other enactment, shall be irrevocable until the bonds have been paid in full as to both principal and interest, and is not subject to amendment in any manner which would impair the rights of the holders of those bonds or which would in any way jeopardize the timely payment of principal or interest when due.
Q Have there been any donations as suggested earlier for payment? A We think there's been some, we're not sure.
Q Where will the money for operating the convention center come from, general tax revenues or center revenues? A Parks and Recreation Budget
Q That's general taxes, right? A Yes
Q What is the operating budget and projected revenue? A We've already had public meetings on that, this is a hearing about the bond issuance.
Q You do have some figures though? A Yes
Wouldn't it be nice to have them presented publicly (newspaper, website, etc.) Later, Bronson said, 'these operations always cost the government money.'


The Board of County Commissioners met in a special session at 5:00 p.m. at the Wasatch County Administration Building, Heber City, Utah and the following business was transacted.

PRESENT: Commissioner LaRen Provost

Commissioner Ralph L. Duke

Commissioner Michael L. Kohler

Brent Titcomb, Clerk/Auditor

Jon Bronson, Zions First National Bank


Jon Bronson from Zion Bank reported to the Commission the terms and repayment of the bond. The bond amount is $3,855,000.00. The money will build the event center and refinance the Jordanelle Fire Station. (See the Wasatch County, Utah $3,855,000.00 Sales Tax and Revenue Refunding Bonds Series 2002 in the supplemental file). The commission acknowledged eighty-eight signatures of protest from citizens of the county. Commissioner Provost asked for a motion. Commissioner Duke made a motion to approve and adoption Resolution 02-16 that will approve the bonding of series 2002. Commissioner Kohler seconded the motion

June 17, 2002 To the Honorable Brent Titcomb, County Clerk

WE, the undersigned persons in interest, residents and/or taxpayers of Wasatch County hereby contest the resolution or proceeding published in the Wasatch Wave on May 15 and 22, 2002 entitled "NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING AND BONDS TO BE ISSUED" hereby reserve our right to any cause of action to contest the regularity, formality, or legality thereof for any cause.

This resolution and debt issuance:

apparently removes, or minimizes, the obligation of property owners in the fire protection SSD which was provided in, or with, the previous bond.

removes, or substantially reduces, guarantees by the County Commission that the debt responsibility will not fall to the general taxpayers of Wasatch County.

inappropriately pledges Sales Tax allocation at a time of changing form and composition of county government, which will restrict their actions in issuance of further bonds and their choices of allocation of the excise tax. There is no apparent need for action prior to the institution of that new government.

does not offer any substantial savings to the taxpayers of Wasatch County.

is inappropriately tied to construction of Convention Center. Said issue is important enough, on its own, for more extensive study and public input.

We call for this debt issue to be postponed until the seating of the new government or, at a minimum, brought before the voters at the general election in November of 2002. The delineation of these items of contest does not exclude other deficiencies that might be found.