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CVB board agrees to downsize

Posted: April 14, 2012 - 11:10pm

The Columbia County Convention and Visitors Bureau Board of Directors agreed Wednesday to downsize.

The board approved changes to its bylaws in a special-called meeting that reduce the membership of the board from 12 to seven.

Bylaw changes also include allowing Columbia County commissioners to appoint board members.

“Don’t you think this is the last day for us,” CVB board Chairman Surinderjit Singh told fellow members prior to the unanimous vote. “We’ve made good relationships.”

Singh added that some of the current board members likely will receive commission appointments to continue with the CVB.

Previously recruited by CVB personnel or other board members, the board makeup currently consists of three hoteliers, three hospitality industry workers, three at-large members, one county commissioner, one Grovetown representative and one Harlem representative.

County Commissioner Bill Morris, who joined the CVB board this year as the commission representative, lobbied to change the selection process and size of the board. Morris said the current board is “too large” and “unwieldy.”

The updated bylaws allow commission Chairman Ron Cross to appoint three CVB board members and other commissioners to appoint one each. Once appointed, the board then will select the chairman.

With the bylaws changed, Morris said the commission might make its appointments as early as next month.

County officials also will take over CVB accounts. All commission-appointed boards receive county accounting services, said County Administrator Scott Johnson.

Commissioners allocate 40 percent of the county’s lodging tax revenues to the CVB each year for operating expenses.

One of the first directives of the new board, Morris said, will be to hire a new executive director to replace Beda Johnson, who resigned six months ago.

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