WHEELING – Wheeling City Council members transferred a six-figure sum to the new entertainment endowment and accepted nominees for the new ad hoc committee that will recommend acts of music and entertainment of the highest caliber for the region.
On Tuesday, council approved an order authorizing city manager Robert Herron to transfer $ 250,000 to the Greater Wheeling Sports and Entertainment Authority for the endowment fund.
Wheeling City Council last month approved a resolution creating the Entertainment Endowment Fund and an ad hoc committee to help speed up and attract various entertainment shows to city venues, especially the WesBanco Arena and the Capitol Theater.
Wheeling Mayor Glenn Elliott also announced candidates for the ad hoc committee that will serve as an advisory committee for this effort. The mayor noted that he was working on a list of candidates who could serve the panel well, and he asked council to support his appointments.
“These are people who have shown interest in me or the city in one way or another since this fund was announced,” Elliott said.
“These are people who are related to music and comedy and other forms of entertainment, and they all have ideas on how we can do a better job of getting bigger and better shows here. “
Elliott said the initial investment will hopefully spark the cause and help organize larger events that on their own can generate additional funds to bolster future show promotions.
“The idea is that this fund does not decrease over time, but increases over time,” he said. “Basically, by giving the promoters some upfront money to promote the shows, if the shows are doing really well, then that fund will grow over time. Hope this encourages people to bring shows here that they are not currently doing. “
The list of nominees for the entertainment ad hoc committee included Dean Connors, Jermaine Lucious, Jon Banco, Crin Joy, Robert Felton, Shawn Fluharty and Lauren Baker. There will also be three other nominees on the panel – one from the Wheeling City Council, one from the Wheeling Convention and Visitors Bureau and one from the Greater Wheeling Sports and Entertainment Authority. For the representative of the Wheeling City Council, the mayor appointed City Councilor Ty Thorngate. Nominations for the other two nominees are expected to be brought forward in the near future.
Council members unanimously approved the appointments and the order to transfer money to the entertainment endowment fund.
In another action on Tuesday, Wheeling City Council accepted the minutes from the last Greater Wheeling Sports and Entertainment Authority meeting in August. The meeting included a financial report that showed the income and operating expenses of the WesBanco Arena and the Capitol Theater. While the Capitol posted revenue of $ 47,311 and operating expenses of $ 32,331, the WesBanco Arena posted a significant operating loss, with total income of only $ 18,387 but expenses operating expenses exceeding $ 61,800.
However, GWSEA Executive Director Denny Magruder noted that a protected site operating grant in the amount of $ 1,157,952 had been received. Magruder said receiving the grant was a “godsend” because it would allow them to continue doing business this year. GWSEA’s net position at the end of July was just over $ 2.2 million, according to the financial report.