By KARLA POMEROY
The Big Horn County Fair Board discussed rental fees at Monday’s regular meeting.
Fair Board Manager Vangi Hackney said currently there is a $500 fee when alcohol is used and $100 without alcohol. Hackney said there has in the past been a $250 cleaning deposit with alcohol.
Member Tim Flitner suggested a straight $100 fee for six hours or more rental fee with or without alcohol plus a $500 cleaning/damage deposit with or without fee.
When asked about increasing the rental fees, Carl Nielsen said he did not want to change the rental fee to encourage use. He said if the rental fees were increased it would discourage use. There is a $50 fee for renting the main building for fewer than six hours.
Nielsen said he would prefer no deposit for rental less than six hours. The rest of the members preferred having a deposit for every rental. Hackney said the deposit is never taken to the bank unless it’s determined that it needs to be used.
The board encouraged Hackney to contact a board member if the room is left a huge mess so they can determine, what, if any, of the deposit would be returned.
Regarding the arena, the board agreed to rent it for $100 plus a $500 maintenance deposit. If a gate fee is charged, the rental fee and agreement must come before the board. The rental fee of $75 would be charged if electricity and restrooms are not needed.
Other rental fees will remain the same with Nielsen noting, “We’re not in this to make money.”
Auctions are a flat rate of $200 the day of, plus $50 per day for moving in and moving out.
The campground fees are $20 per day or $75 per week for campers with electricity. Tents are $10 per day or $50 per week. The “horse hotel” is $15 per day and the horse stalls are $30 per stall with a one-time non-refundable damage deposit of $15.
The board then discussed a request from Big Brothers Big Sisters for a donation of the rental fee for their fundraising wine and beer event. Chairman Felix Carrizales said there is concern about setting a precedent for non-profit organizations.
South Big Horn Food Pantry Coordinator Glenda Willis is asking for use of the facility for commodities distribution and for the board to waive the rental fee.
Hackney said she spoke with Jenn Prentiss of BBBS and she told Prentiss that she would recommend a fee waiver but a security deposit would still be required.
Flitner recommended leaving the fees in place and said there are ways for non-profit organizations to raise the fee. He said the board should never waive the cleaning deposit. The board agreed to not waive fees for either request.
There was also a request from the Big Horn 100, Sorenson moved to charge a flat fee for use of facilities of $1,000 plus the $500 cleaning deposit per event.
In other business,
•Hackney reported she received two checks allegedly from the Federal Trade Commission. Sorenson said they appear fraudulent but there is a settlement case number and he will check into them.
•Hackney recommended eliminating association dues but continuing to pay dues to Wyoming Association of Fairs and Rocky Mountain Fair Association. She said there is another, an international association that provides online resources and training. She said likely the resources may not be applicable to a small fair like Big Horn County’s. Conferences are in Las Vegas and Florida. “I don’t think our fair will benefit as much. Sorenson said the $100 for the international association fee is budgeted but could be used for something else. The board approved paying the bills except for the international association fee.
•The Big Horn County Fair Board changed meeting times to 6 p.m. during Mountain Standard Time and 7 p.m. during Daylight Savings Time.
•The board agreed to contract with Neil Bennett for $600 to get the website up and running with an annual maintenance fee of $300 ($25 per month).