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Commission approves special fund for concerts at Lady A Pavilion

Posted: March 20, 2012 - 7:08pm  |  Updated: March 20, 2012 - 7:10pm

Twitter @DonnieFetter

Columbia County commissioners voted Tuesday to create a special revenue fund to pay upfront costs for concerts at Evans Towne Center Park.

To create the fund, commissioners also agreed to loan it $100,000 from the general fund.

State law requires a special revenue fund when user fees are charged for a service, such as ticket fees for concerts, county Finance Services Director Leanne Reece said last week.

Also, Reece said the special fund lets officials better keep track of the park’s profitability.

“We want to be able to keep up with how much revenue we’re bringing in from ticket sales versus how much it is costing us to put on the concerts or events,” Reece said. “We don’t want that money commingled with other monies.”

The $100,000 loan is seed money to pay concert promoters, who often demand some payment before booking a show.

Little Big Town, who is scheduled to perform with Josh Kelley on April 5 at the Lady Antebellum Pavilion, required an upfront payment of $20,000, Reece said.

As the special revenue fund grows, Reece said, officials will reimburse the general fund.

In other meeting news, commissioners agreed to engage Augusta-based PayLink Partners to process online and in-person credit and debit card transactions for county services.

The service first will be used at the Water Utility department in a 60-day trial run, said County Administrator Scott Johnson.

Should that prove successful, the payment offerings then might be employed at Development Services. If again it is successful, Johnson said PayLink will be incorporated for all county departments.

The county will pay PayLink a monthly processing fee determined by the number and types of transactions. Johnson said a $2.50 online fee charged for online payments should cover the costs of the PayLink payments.

Those who pay in person won’t have to pay the fee.

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