The Shawnee City Commission did not renew their contract with the Greater Shawnee Area Chamber of Commerce.
The contract between the two entities creates the Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB), which functions as an auspice of the chamber. The chamber runs the CVB, which is intended to promote tourism, with funds from the Hotel Occupancy Surcharge.
By ordinance, hotels are required to charge an additional fee that goes back to the city for tourism promotion. Through the contract, the chamber receives a portion of this funding with which to run the CVB.
The contract review committee recommended the full city commission approve the contract, but the audit for the year wasn’t completed yet.
Commissioner Steve Smith requested the contract renewal be deferred until the audit has been completed.
Smith could not be reached for comment at press time.
Chamber President/CEO Nancy Keith said that letters were sent to local accounting firms at the beginning of the year, but the chamber received no response. She added that their auditor of more than 10 years also declined, which she called “an unexpected turn of events.”
“We are diligently seeking an auditor who is willing to audit a not-for-profit entity, and we certainly hope to have one in place as soon as possible,” Keith said.
The deadline for the audit to be in was April 30, and the commission is expected to take up the item again as soon as the audit is in.
The contract must be renewed by June 30, as that is when the current contract expires.
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