(Nov. 21, 2014) The Ocean City Council took the following actions during its Nov. 17 session:
The council voted unanimously to approve a $10,000 expenditure, to come from the city’s budget allocation for trade shows, to buy into a joint-marketing venture for fishing-related tourism.
The pitch came from Scott Lenox, host of the local fishing show Hooked on OC, who also works as a golf pro in Ocean Pines. After working several golf shows and organizing promotional deals through the OC Golf Getaways co-op, Lenox said, he started to think “we should be doing this same thing for fishing.”
Lenox’s promotion will run through six trade shows in the Mid-Atlantic region this winter. His website, fishinoc.com, is currently being redesigned, and print materials are on their way.
The regular buy-in for local marinas and charter boats runs $2,500, but the city’s higher price will give the town’s official tourism materials higher billing online and in-person, as well as a full-page feature in the printed fishing trip planner.
Lenox’s proposal was previously reviewed by the city’s Tourism Commission, where it received favorable feedback.
Councilman Dennis Dare proposed, and the council approved, that the city should attempt to do another round of the National Citizen Survey, which was last conducted in Ocean City during 2007.
The NCS is a standardized survey that asks citizens to give feedback on various government services, such as fire and police service, trash pickup, water fees and other municipal items. Endorsed by the National League of Cities and the International City/County Management Association, the survey is a generally-held standard for gauging citizen satisfaction.
“I think it would be good to do again so we can compare our performance not only with other towns, but to see how we have changed in the last seven years since the last survey,” Dare said.
The 2007 survey resulted in a high response rate from city residents, returning over 90 percent, Dare said.
Mayor Rick Meehan asked for the council’s consent in holding this year’s Mayor’s Open House at the convention center instead of City Hall, where it has been held for the past 18 years.
The open house will take place from 1-3 p.m. on New Year’s Day, and typically showcases a specific element or department of the city government. This year will be centered on the convention center, and will feature a tour of the Performing Arts Center, a 1,200-seat theater to be completed next month.
“We’d like to showcase the history and the development of the convention center, and showcase in particular the Performing Arts Center,” Meehan said.
City fire and police apparatus will also be on display, as usual. Music will be provided by Bryan Russo with a number of guest artists.