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Hardon urges Tama to stick with Co.Economic Development membership

September 16, 2010
By John Speer, Editor
TAMA NEWS-HERALD -By John Speer Editor Pledging to seek some changes in its operations, Marty Hardon told Tama City Council members on Sept. 7 to stay the course with membership in the Tama County Economic Development Commission. Hardon, a Tama business person, has served as a city representative on the commission since January. Mayor Chris Bearden is Tama’s other member. Council members reviewed a 14-page “work in progress” document presented by Hardon and discussed the merits of continuing the city’s participation with him for almost one hour. At the end, the council took no action on Hardon’s recommendation. However, Mayor Chris Bearden will proceed with negotiations to hire a part-time grant writer for the city. The annual dues for the Economic Development Commission membership for Tama total $4,097 according to City Clerk Judy Welch. The bill was due July 1. Membership for each city is calculated at a rate of $1.50 for each resident of a community. Recently, city council members Dan Zimmerman and Jeff Brezina have voiced concerns over the aims of the commission including what they see as too much focus on tourism. On Tuesday, Zimmerman questioned the pay raises given to the two commission employees in June. He said last Tuesday the raises were approved “when county employees and our Tama city employees” wages were frozen. Hardon said the June meeting was the one meeting of the commission he missed since January. He said he would have voted against the increases approved at that June meeting had he been present. In September of last year, the council voted 3-0 with two members absent to discontinue membership. Following a meeting with a number of commission members and Lindi Roelofse, the executive director, the council rescinded the decision and agreed to a another years membership. Hardon said he has become a member of the five-member executive committee of the development group and this is where he sees changes being developed. Redefining the values, principles, mission and tactics are some of the items addressed in the “Planning Our Plan” which is under study by the executive committee. The Economic Development Commission is currently made up of up to two representatives from each of the 12 cities in Tama County, the three-member board of supervisors and seats are available for two Meskwaki Settlement members. (A copy of “Planning Our Plan” working document is available for inspection at the News-Herald Office, 220 W. 3rd, Tama, 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. Mon-Fri).

Article Photos

Marty Hardon
Tama Representative to Tama County Economic Development Commission

Fact Box

About Tama County Economic Development

EXECUTIVE BOARD- Midge Horton, Vining – Chair, Marty Hardon, Tama - Vice Chair, Mayor Keith Sash, Gladbrook -Second Vice Chair, Mayor Don Lyons, Dysart – Past Chair

COMMISSION- Chelsea -Mayor Roger Ochs, Pat Veit; Clutier- Gerry Kopriva, Arlene Vondracek; Dysart - Dwayne Luze and Mayor Lyons; Elberon- Nancy Braasch, Linn Snell; Garwin- Carl Zoffka, Merle Parks; Gladbrook -Mandy Gehring and Mayor Sash; Lincoln- Mayor Roland Fink, Annie Stocker; Montour- Mayor Susan Holubar, Dale Gericke; Tama- Mayor Chris Bearden, Hardon; Toledo- Mayor Pam Wood, Brian Sokol; Traer- Ellen Young, Nick Podhajsky; Vining- Mayor Dale Stout, Horton; Meskwaki Nation, two to be named; Tama County Supervisors- Dan Wilkens, Kendall Jordan, Larry Vest

Tama County Economic Development Commission strives to cultivate a local economic environment that is pioneering, evolving, engaging the entire county in building the context and products necessary to attract and retain businesses and the labor force needed to ensure an economic foundation that will sustain the desired quality of life for all community members.

Increase the level of capital investment
Increase the number of fair market living wage jobs
Increase the efficiency at which capital and jobs are combined

2009-10 expenditures: $160,999
•Salaries - wages- $75,694
•IPERS 5,034
•Health insur. 23,632
•Unemploy comp. 230
•Advertising- $5,610
(Includes bulk mailing $696, Business magazines- Acme Printing Co., Des Moines $3,837; My Mother’s Place, catering Edies event $536; Iowa Dept. of Cultural Affairs , Great Places signs $240; Blacksmith Boutique, 2009 Edies trophies $160; Amber Freeman, decorated cookies $100; Zack’s Game Bag, plates $28
•Legal notices - subscriptions - dues Tama - Grundy Publishing, Tama $102
•Postage and Mailing $1,643
•Mileage, meals and lodging
•Telephone service $1,866
•School of instruction
and meeting $ 620
•Office - data
processing equipment $ 158
•Tort liability insur. $1,072
•Equipment insurance $ 40
•Workers comp insur $ 617
•Dues, memberships $2,679
•Tama County Tourism $15,394 - (Includes Acme Printing Co. Inc., Des Moines, travelers guides $5,219; Central Iowa Tourism, matching funds program $500; postage $265; Travel Federation of Iowa, opening night sponsorship $3,150; tourism postage, schooling $16; banners $864; Mo Co Creative Services, maps $500; Tama-Toledo Area Chamber of Commerce, booth registration home show $90; tourism $14; Joann Ruopp, full page article $500; Fairprint Graphic Solutions, supplies-economic development $635; tourism $11; Acme Printing Co., Inc., printing of visitors guides $2,858; Mo Co Creative Services, remainder due $500; postage, meals, lodging charges $23; Zack’s Game Bag, clings $250
• Barn Quilts $2,776 - Pioneer Graphics Commercial,Waterloo, Barn Quilt Calendar $2,776
•Historic Preservation $5,900 - (Includes Bingham Plumbing and Electric, Haven School historic preservation $1,376; Squiers, Colin, restoration Haven School 442 and 66; Gerry Kopriva, full page article 500; Hrabak Lumber Co., Inc., Haven School restoration supplies 3,517

REVENUES $158,044

Other misc. fees - $18,750
Misc. Reimbursements 11,966
Economic Devp. from local gov. 105,000
Misc. state grant and reimbursement 16,568
Historic preservation 105
Tama Co. Tourism 4,360
Barn quilt donations 1,295

*sources: Tama County Economic Development website -; Tama County Revenue and Expenditure Detail reports



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