Before any further grants could be handed out Wednesday, the Kosciusko County Convention, Recreation and Visitors Commission had to approve an additional appropriation.
Commission Vice President Mark Skibowski said the commission overcommitted for more grants than they have in their budget this year. He said the commission was short $54,000-$60,000.
“So we have to pay attention to that going forward,” he said.
The commission does have money in savings. So to make sure the commission can give out money through the end of the year, with the last meeting being in November, the commission approved an additional appropriation of $200,000 to be moved from savings.
After the additional appropriation was approved, the commission heard a grant request from Cori Humes, executive director of the Kosciusko County Convention and Visitors Bureau. She requested $30,000 for a website refresh.
The visitors bureau took over the Clearly Kosciusko brand from the Lilly Center for Lakes and Streams. The visitors bureau also is in charge of the Live Well in the Moment brand.
Humes said the visitors bureau feels both missions are very similar and rebranding the visitors bureau from Live Well in the Moment to Clearly Kosciusko would greatly impact its countywide voice and reinvigorate the brand.
“This will still be a partnership between the four founding organizations: the Convention and Visitors Bureau, Lilly Center for Lakes and Streams, Kosciusko County Economic Development, as well as the county Chamber (of Commerce). We have had discussions with them about this potential move and they are supportive of that,” she said.
It will be a county brand. Since its existence, Clearly Kosciusko has been an opportunity for organizations to be members for free, as well as any municipalities that want to take on that brand, put it on their websites to signify Clearly Kosciusko.
The visitors bureau’s board of directors feels the Clearly Kosciusko brand is a more identified brand to the Live Well in the Moment brand.
Humes said the goal with the website refresh is to combine the two brand websites into one with visitkosciuskocounty.org still being the main domain, but the two sites will be merged together.
Part of the grant will go towards purchasing fonts that were not free, Humes said. Other costs will go toward updating some marketing items.
Commission member Matt Metzger said the cost of purchasing the fonts was about $1,900. He asked if they considered going with a lighter font. Humes said they will continue to use the current font, but wanted to own both fonts in case it was needed. They tried to find it for free, but couldn’t do so.
Commission member Lyle Shrock also voiced concerns over the quote to refresh the website. He asked if the visitors bureau got other quotes. Humes said they did not because the company, Reusser, has been working with the Live Well in the Moment brand since it has existed. She’s afraid if they get another quote, the cost will double or triple to completely redo a site.
Humes said she could go back to Reusser to negotiate on the price.
The commission approved granting the visitors bureau $25,000 for the website refresh.