Mayor Probes Chamber Accountability

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Payson Mayor Bob Edwards said he is looking for accountability in regards to the Rim Country Chamber of Commerce.

An item on Thursday night's council agenda regarding funding for the COC for the new fiscal year sparked Edwards to post, "I have a lot of questions about this because of non-performance" on the Web site, www.paysons-progress.com.

The council will discuss a resolution that would authorize the mayor to execute an agreement with the COC to disburse funding totaling $76,000 over the next fiscal year, at Thursday's meeting.

The funding is designed to aid the COC in promoting the town, Edwards said.

"The contract is kind of nebulous," he said. "There are no deliverables on it."

Edwards said that the COC lacks accountability for any progress it has made in the last year.

"Basically money was given to them and I want to see some accountability," Edwards said. "Just saying ‘we're doing it' is not enough. We want accountability -- where money is spent and proof of positive results of spending."

Diane Enos, chair of the COC board of directors, said that she is "dumbfounded" as to why Edwards would make those statements.

Enos said that the COC and its board members met with councilors and town officials several times to design a contract for the new fiscal year.

"Everything was met," Enos said.

Enos said that the chamber's performance in the last fiscal year was above average.

"We do not understand why (Edwards) has issues," she said.

"All items in the fiscal year 2006-2007 contract were exceeded."

The council will discuss whether to grant $76,000 for the new fiscal year or split up the funding and approve $38,000 for six months.

Edwards said that the reason for splitting up the funding would be to allow the new economic vitality manager, who has yet to be hired, to have a say in whether the COC funding is appropriate and the best use of the funds.

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