Of the Keizertimes

Things went just a bit better in planning for the 2014 Keizer First Citizen banquet.

At Monday’s Keizer City Council meeting, councilors approved the use of the Keizer Civic Center for the Jan. 25 event. The event, being put on by the Keizer Chamber of Commerce, runs from 5 to 9 p.m. with tickets costing $60 per or $300 for a table.

The unanimous approval came two weeks after Heather Weathers and Darlene Taylor made a presentation on behalf of the chamber and presented a short proposal. In the time between, city staff put together a list of options for council to consider.

Christine Dieker, executive director of the chamber, was in attendance Monday to answer questions. Last year, Dieker brought the proposal to council in mid-December, which led to some tense exchanges as councilors didn’t appreciate the late notice.

The event, which honors First Citizen, Merchant of the Year, Service to Education Award and Presidents Award winners, is expected to draw around 250 people in a scaled-down format from recent years. The event will not be a chamber fundraiser and there won’t be music and dancing afterwards.

Tracy Davis, city recorder, went through some of the different options for councilors to choose from. A normal event with 250 people would cost $1,910 plus $1,170 in refundable deposits.

One option was to give the chamber a base fee of $500 – since the organization is a Keizer-based 501c group – plus $460 in staffing and security fees. Another option was a Tuesday Community Day Rate of $220 plus the same $460 for staffing and security fees for a total of $680. A third option was charging the chamber $20 an hour for overhead costs plus the $460 in extra fees, for a total of $540. A last option was waiving all fees.

Councilor Dennis Koho noted the chamber has provided its own security in the past.

“We could offer them the $500, then they provide their own security,” Koho said.

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