Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

Politics

October 25, 2013

Council, Chamber renew plan to work cooperatively

(Continued)

Knoxville —

"I think we could communicate better that way," Verwers said. 

Concern was expressed about Open Meetings Law requirements whenever more than two council members are present at a meeting to discuss business. Roozeboom felt that the openness and presence of the public may inhibit free discussion. 

"We don't have to have the whole council," Councilor Tim Pitt said. He added that he represents the council on other commissions and boards, and the council members trust each other to share the information gained. As for events, Pitt believes existing events, such as Nationals and Bike Nite, should be more celebrated and promoted.

The consensus of Chamber Board members and council showed that the idea of a subcommittee was favorable. Board member and mayoral candidate Brian Hatch volunteered, as did Verwers. People associated with the Knoxville Raceway were at the meeting, but none of them were there to represent the track in an official capacity or make commitments. 

Working together was something everyone who spoke feels should be done to make Knoxville the town they want it to be. Formanek said it has been difficult to get different entities in town to work together. She believes it would take "a miracle" to make that happen. A business owner herself, Formanek said she has not been at a Chamber Board meeting in a long time, except to complain. 

Van Donselaar said she felt communication was already strong, as she and Assistant City Manager Dylan Feik have a good working relationship. The two talk often. Van Donselaar said that the Chamber has a small budget, and retaining members in a lackluster economy can be difficult. Members weigh the benefit of joining the Chamber before paying dues. 

Chuck Day, who was associated with the Chamber for years, said his first thought after sitting through the meeting was that "nobody knows what a Chamber does." 

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