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City seeks ideas for tourism grant money

Tour guides in costume at Pioneer Park (May 12, 2015). Photo: Whatcom News

Each year the City of Ferndale’s Lodging Tax Advisory Committee (LTAC) awards tens of thousands of dollars (over $50,000 this year) received in lodging taxes to non-profit organizations to be used for the purpose of paying all or any part of the cost of tourism promotion, acquisition of tourism-related facilities or operation of tourism-related facilities by non-profit organizations.

And each year the city solicits applications for the upcoming year’s awards. Organizations interested in applying this year must do so by August 4th, 2017. Click here for details and an application form.

Grant awards are selected from the pool of applicants when the LTAC meets on the fourth Tuesday of November each year.

Current LTAC board members, according to the City of Ferndale’s website, represent Ferndale Heritage Society and the Ferndale Chamber of Commerce and include a City of Ferndale councilmember and the mayor. There are reportedly two vacancies on the committee.

Click for more information

Click for more information

State law (RCW 67.28.1817) requires

  • 2 members be representatives of businesses required to collect the lodging tax
  • 2 members be persons involved in activities qualified to be funded by LTAC grant awards
  • 1 member must be an elected official of the City who shall be the chair person of the committee
  • The number of members who are representatives of businesses required to collect tax under this chapter shall equal the number of members who are involved in activities authorized to be funded by revenue received

Anyone interested on being on the LTAC should fill out an application. Click here to down an application.

LTAC selects grant award candidates and provides the list along with recommended amounts of funding for each to the city council for final determination. The city council may choose to make awards in the recommended amounts to all, some, or none of the candidates on this list.

The following organizations awarded grant money by the LTAC during the 2017 year and the amounts are as follows.

  • Ferndale Chamber of Commerce ($40,000)
    • Visitor Center – $39,000
    • Street Festival – $1,000
  • Ferndale Farmers Market ($500)
    • Ferndale Farmers Market – $500
  • Ferndale Heritage Society ($10,000)
    • Olde Fashioned Christmas at Pioneer Park – $2,000
    • Pioneer Park tour guides – $8,000
  • City of Ferndale Parks, Recreation & Trails Advisory Board (PRTAB) ($1,500)
    • Art in the Park/Inspiring Public Spaces – $1,500
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