Due to the action of House Bill 1, the Natchitoches Historic District Development Commission (NHDDC) is slated to receive $319,165. The budget was cut back by $50,000 in June, but in the end, only $40,835 was removed from it. At its meeting July 20 David Stamey said they’d anticipated a 12 percent cut, so their 15 percent cut to the budget was accurate.
“We knew this was coming down the pipe so it’s a good thing we planned for it,” said Chairman Van Erikson.
For the past four years the NHDDC has received their capped amount of $360,000 from Louisiana’s Visitor Enterprise Fund to divide amongst its projects.
Sometime between now and the end of the year, the NHDDC will reach out to its state representative to see if there could possibly be an update to its budget.
“We didn’t actually anticipate a 12% cut. We felt there would be a reduction in our funding. We budgeted for a 15% cut and it turned out the cut was 12%, so we didn’t over commit to our 2017-2018 funding promises.,” said Stamey.
“That part hasn’t decreased. Now we know the numbers we’ll be going forward with to January. We’ll reassess our needs then. So far we haven’t committed to anything we can’t respond to.”
Rebecca Blakenbaker discussed a new marketing initiative that would develop a brand for Natchitoches. The target date is January 2018 to have everything up and running. An RFP will be release next week.
“We don’t have a tag that reflects Natchitoches as a community today,” she said. “We want to create an umbrella brand for the City and all the entities that help make it run.”
The idea is to have a cohesive voice and a consistent brand that speaks to the community, businesses, visitors and perspective visitors.
“This has never been done in Natchitoches and it’s really important,” said Erikson.
City Main Street and Public Relations Manager Janna Jenkins said they’re also working on compiling one community calendar on the City’s website to emcompass all events that occur in town. It’s important to unify information because this calendar can be a business tool and an economic driver.
Dates for upcoming events include:
Aug. 19: NSU Move-in Day
Aug. 26: NSU Athletic Auction
Sept. 14-16: NSU President Dr. Chris Maggio’s Investiture
Sept. 22: 60th Anniversary Lady of the Bracelet Reunion
Sept. 23: NSU’s Lady of the Bracelet Pageant
Sept. 29-30: NSU Family Day Weekend
Oct. 20-21: NSU Homecoming
Sept. 29-30: Classic Car Show with Friday night Fish Fry
Oct. 13-15: APHN Fall Tour of Homes
Sept. 17: Miss Merry Christmas Pageant