Flagler County Tourism Director Matt Dunn had been placed on paid administrative leave in April after coming under criminal investigation. The county says the tourism bureau is turning away from Dunn’s sports-oriented tourism, and was not firing him for any wrongdoing.
flagler county tourism
The grants were part of the annual county tourism bureau’s funding round and are designed to enhance tourism and the visitor count in the county.
County Administrator Craig Coffey and tourism officials put commissioners’ questions about the expense of a website to rest with 75 minutes of details and only a few straw men.
A good showing in December aside, when year-over-year tourism tax receipts jumped 18 percent, Flagler County has done less well, and not necessarily because of Hurricane Matthew.
A divided House Agriculture and Property Rights Subcommittee was not swayed by a presentation from Flagler County Attorney Al Hadeed as it voted to scrap county authority to regulate short-term, vacation rentals. The bill has several additional hurdles to clear.
County Commissioner Donald O’Brien today was willing to raise the county’s tourism tax to 5 percent, but to further increase revenue for beach restoration, and, for a year, lower revenue for promotions.
Flagler County commissioners agreed today to deplete a $1.5 million fund for beach management as part of a match to draw down state dollars, but none of the money would benefit Flagler Beach, angering officials there.
After a vote failed to take-over the failing museum entirely, Flagler County commissioners agreed to a generous 90-day bailout, pending a more detailed agreement that would enable the county to absorb the 460-acre property yet leave the museum board at least nominally in place.
The questioning was another example of of the TDC’s more inquisitorial attitude toward local projects as opposed to a less rigorous or accountable approach when the applicant is an out-of-town organization, including for-profits.
County government’s tourism arm, which manages $1.6 million in tax dollars, is diminishing emphasis on community events to push sports and conferences which draw people without necessarily promoting the county.