Councilor Clarifies Town's Event Center Commitment

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Payson Town Manager Fred Carpenter and Councilor Robert Henley both want to emphasize that the council decision on the development of the Payson Event Center at Thursday's meeting was preliminary and does not involve any commitment of monies on the part of the town.

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Payson Councilmember Robert Henley

"My thinking is that we approved a memorandum of understanding giving them 120 days to put together some financing and come back and tell us what that is," Henley said.

As reported in the Friday, Oct. 15 edition of the Roundup, Hospitality Support Group President Bruce Berres sees it the same way.

"It's only the beginning of a long process," Berres said after the meeting. "It's a project we love, and we're excited about it, but it's going to take the cooperation of a lot of different entities to make it a reality." Key components of the $21 million proposal, originally submitted to the town by Hospitality Support Group on Aug. 17, include:

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Town Manager Fred Carpenter

  • A cover or roof for the rodeo arena, a topic of debate since the rodeo grounds was relocated from Rumsey Park in 1996.
  • A 150-room hotel with an indoor pool, fitness center, game area, and area dedicated to Payson history.
  • A 1,000-seat amphitheater that would be home to concert series and other musical events.
  • A 7,000-square-foot conference center that includes a grand ballroom and is capable of handling meetings of up to 500 people.
  • A cowboy-themed steakhouse restaurant and saloon with sawdust on the floor and "a flavor of history."

"How much of that $21 million is theirs versus something that the town might have to put forth is yet to be determined," Henley said.

See Story: Council OKs event center resort and roof project

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