Budget error part of CVB funds transfer

Published 12:00 am Thursday, May 14, 2009

NATCHEZ — The largest portion of a city cash transfer to the visitor’s center last year shouldn’t have been transferred at all.

City Clerk Donnie Holloway said Wednesday that $240,000 that was transferred to the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau budget was payment for the private convention center’s management contract.

That payment — to New Orleans Hotel Consultants — was supposed to come from the city’s general fund, not the CVB budget.

Email newsletter signup

But due to an error in the budgeting process, the unnecessary transfer has occurred since the contract was signed in October 2007.

Holloway said on Tuesday that the visitor’s center had received a transfer of $321,500. Only the remaining $81,500 was used by the visitor’s center to pay salaries and bills.

Tourism Director Connie Taunton — who leads the CVB — said she would ask city leaders to remove the management contract from her budget.

Holloway said Wednesday that it should be removed and could be handled in the next fiscal year’s budget.

The city had planned to meet with department heads today to review each budget, but that meeting has been rescheduled due to scheduling conflicts. The meetings are now set for Tuesday and Wednesday, Holloway said.