Councilwoman Verna Rollinger has lost no time in making her presence felt on the dais.
The council voted unanimously Tuesday in favor of her recommendation to create a committee to research ways to help local businesses.
“I am recommending an appointed committee at [City Manager Ken Frank’s] suggestion, which I think was a good one, to speed up the organization [process],” Rollinger said. “The Chamber of Commerce and the Visitors Bureau have expressed their willingness to participate.”
Councilwomen Elizabeth Pearson, a marketing professional, and Toni Iseman volunteered to represent the council on the committee. The chamber and bureau each will appoint two representatives.
Rollinger said the committee should not take its time, so the council could consider what steps should be taken in a timely manner.
“Assuming a committee can be formed by the end of January, I would hope that a recommendation would be forthcoming no later than the second meeting of March,” she said.
A 10% plummet in sales taxes generated by local shops, reported at the midyear budget hearing in December, prompted Rollinger’s proposal.
She said the official data confirmed what she had heard from struggling local business owners.
“I believe the council should make every effort to assist our businesses to survive and perhaps even prosper in this difficult economic climate,” Rollinger said.