City Willing to Sponsor ‘Revenue Neutral’ Independence Day Fireworks

The Elk Grove City Council decided to support the annual Independence Day fireworks so long as they are “revenue neutral.” The decision ...


The Elk Grove City Council decided to support the annual Independence Day fireworks so long as they are “revenue neutral.” The decision was made at Wednesday night’s city council meeting.

The “Annual Salute to The Red, White, and Blue” fireworks display and accompanying Independence Day festivities had been sponsored by the Elk Grove Chamber of Commerce. This year the chamber decided it was best to expend its resources on supporting local businesses and decided to discontinue its financial support.

In a move to ensure the events continuity, Elk Grove City Manager Laura Gill proposed the city, in conjunction with the Cosumnes Community Services District, fill the void created by the chamber. In her staff report Gill said up to $100,000 from the city’s general fund is available to cover the cost of the fireworks, the annual fun run and an unspecified tenth anniversary celebration event.

That report spurred a flurry of e-mails through the community questioning the wisdom of such a large allocation given economic conditions.

In her presentation to the council Gill said she wanted “reframe the issue” and clarify matters. Gill noted that $87,000 from the city’s contingency fund was available should the city council support the events.

“I am not recommending you spend $87,000, that is what you have available,” Gill said. “The worse thing we could have done is not discussed it at all.”

Gill went on to say that the event has been a community mainstay for 13 years and people have come to expect it. “If you choose to do nothing, that needs to be communicated,” she added.

During the public comment section many speakers noted the current economic conditions and said it might be unwise for such a large expenditure given the uncertainty.

Council urged to stop being Scrooges



Conversely, Elk Grove resident Tom Shine urged the city council to fund the event. “Let’s stop being Scrooges,” he said.

During their deliberations council member Jim Cooper said he was not supportive of the expenditures noting the furloughs of city employees. “I don’t feel right when we have asked so much of our employees,” Cooper said.

Council member Pat Hume reasoned that it was because of the difficult times that the city provide an event that families can attend for free. “This is important not to run around in the doldrums,” Hume said.

After further deliberation the council decided by a 4-1 vote to make an initial $25,000 allocation and that the city staff should seek sponsorships that would generate enough revenue to offset the city’s allocation.

Cooper was the sole dissenting vote.

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6 comments

Phillip Stark said...

"That report spurred a flurry of e-mails through the community questioning the wisdom of such a large allocation given economic conditions."

Oh Really? How many is 'a flurry'?

Josie said...

"flurry"? and that was all you got out of that article?

James said...

A flurry is whenever the Community Activist sends one email.

Josie said...

You've lost me...that sentence makes no sense at all! Are you maybe replying to some other story and posted here by mistake?

Phillip Stark said...

It stands out because there isn't any language in the article to support it. Had there been a reference to the source of this 'flurry' of emails (and to whom the flurries were addressed) it might have lent more credibility to the article. Personally, I believe spending 100K to celebrate our birthday and provide the community a celebration on the 4th of July is money well spent...not because we need ignore difficult economic times... rather, in light of them.

Josie said...

Let's forget the "flurry", ok? The thing that I had a problem with and didn't address to anyone was the July 1st celebration for 10th Yr. Anniv. That's a Thursday and majority of people will be at work, off work Monday, 5th. I believe that with the tight economy it should be combined with the July 4th celebration in some way. Have the same celebration as years before. July 3rd run is good too. That being said, I do not believe that the $86,000-87,000should be spent for this celebration and I do believe that is where there was so much conversation because the City did mention this as funds available.

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