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Wood County Industrial Commission

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Holly Lake Chamber Receives $2,000 grant
By JOHN SPARKS

 Meeting in regular session Thursday, October 2 at Ed's Place, the board of the Wood County Industrial Commission (WCIC) approved grants to nine applicants from the group's Hotel/Motel Tax fund for projects and events to be conducted in the 08-09 fiscal year. Total distributions are $9,800. Included are a grant to the newly re-constituted Holly Lake Area Chamber of Commerce for $2,000 and a grant to the Hawkins Area Chamber of Commerce for $1,250.

In announcing the grants which are funded by the Hotel/Motel receipts, WCIC Executive Director Gary McKinley said, "The successful proposals demonstrated clearly how they plan to attract overnight visitors to Wood County." McKinley added, "New projects, such as the Holly Lake proposal, should include a good business plan and marketing strategy for bringing overnight visitors to Wood County."

The grant to Holly Lake provides support for an advertising program directed to the Dallas retirment market while the grant to Hawkins is for promotion of the annual Oil Festival.

In addition to the two local chambers, seven other proposals received grants including Winnsboro Area Merchants Association-$800; Mineola Chamber-$1,250; Alba Activities Club-$500; Lake Fork Sportsman's Association-$2,000; Autumn Trails-$1,000; Lake Country Antique Tractor Association-$800, and Lake Country Playhouse-$1,000.

Funds collected by the Hotel/Motel tax (4-percent for Wood County hospitality enterprises) support the grant program of the WCIC. Approximately $10,000 had been budgeted for the 08-09 program year.
The Wood County Industrial Commission also provides funding for four major fishing tournaments on Lake Fork each year at $5,000 each in addition to major expenditures to promote Lake Fork fishing through advertisements in various media.

Directors also heard a report regarding industrial and tourism progress in East Texas, including a major expansion of Rob Roy Industries in Gilmer and a $49-million expansion at Campbell Soup plant in Paris for the company's line of V8 Fusion drinks.

One of the organization's eight projects committees reported on discussions regarding establishing wall of granite panels at the Swearigen Park (HQ for Sabine River Authority) with each the name, date and weight for each fisherman who caught a trophy bass at Lake Fork. Preliminary estimates put the cost at approximately $16,000-to $18,000 for the project. Corporate sponsorship of the Sharelunker program by Budweiser would suggest high probability of corporate sponsorship of this wall as well.

McKinley reported sales tax applications for new businesses in Wood County during September 2008 totaled 27. Hawkins had four new permits and Holly Lake three.

The next meeting of the Wood County Industrial Commission is scheduled for Thursday, November 6, 2008 at Moser's on Lake Fork.

Last Updated on Thursday, 23 April 2009 17:46  

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