COLUMN: Chimney Rock is MISSING – New leadership at TDA needed

RUTHERFORDTON — There is no picture of Chimney Rock in the new Lake Lure & Blue Ridge Foothills visitor’s guide. With the elevator out again,  visitors might want to be shown the steps to climb or the view from the top.

They might  also want to know that Rutherford County is a part of the Federal Overmountain Victory Trail.

The Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail (OVHT) is part of the U.S. National Trails System, and N.C. State Trail System. It recognizes the Revolutionary War Overmountain Men, Patriots from what is now East Tennessee who crossed the Great Smoky Mountains, run through Rutherford County through the Gilbert Town Historic District.and then fought in the Battle of Kings Mountain in South Carolina.

Clearly there are no checks and balances on the marketing team. They paid Destination by Design to come up with a hiking trail county -wide concept and don’t put hiking on the visitor guide’s cover.

Have you noticed the RC website is built around visit small towns nc. Do a web search on that?

Wasn’t on our first page of results. Never heard anyone ask where is there a small town to visit?

Just what ARE they doing with their $1,000,000 + budget. Before they credit themselves for increased collected visitor’s fees – remind them that the RC Commissioners gave them the extra 1% to collect, there is no Party Rock Fire this year to keep visitors away or roads washed out by hurricanes.

Board Members

brandon.higgins@rutherfordcountync.gov
dlong@tryon.com
jim.masek@yahoo.com
kitty@blueridgedesignllc.com
maryjg@chimneyrockpark.com
rlundy@tryon.com
jgeisler@rumblingbald.com
willard@kidsenses.com

RC CATALYST PUBLIC RECORDS REQUEST

The Board is being asked to explain:

Why hasn’t Spindale been given their TDA funding for StreetScapes?

Why isn’t the PoPs organization being promoted by Forest City not promoted by TDA?

When did the Board provide the reason for a $900,000 fund balance?

What does an “Agency” from Charlotte know about Rutherford County, NC?

Why did it take RCCatalyst reporting that Mr. Cason was supposed to be making quarterly reports to the commissioners? Where are the board members? Have none of them read the law regarding the TDA?

Why are tourists being discouraged from using the bathrooms at the Lake Lure Visitors’ Center?

Why with a $900,000 fund balance and Million dollar budget are the employees at Lake Lure visitor center required to clean bathrooms? Why not hire a maid service?

Why did Mr. Cason defer all questions about the budget to Taylor Hardin? He was unable to answer my questions about what was included in some line items. It is a MILLION dollar budget.

Why is there no marketing to the local area? The Israeli Minister of Tourism was recently in town and the TDA knew nothing of it. Did Ms. Hardin relay my message to Don Cason that he was in town and requesting a Lake Lure boat tour?

How many years does it take to make a master plan? I’ve seen 3 or 4 plans in the 15 years I have been here. Where are the fundraisers and marketing? Are we once again spending tons of money on plans that will never materialize? Where is the oversight to this organization?

What are the salaries of both TDA and TAF employees?

Who paid for the $60,000 wayfaring sign mistake made by a TDA contractor?

What did we get for the $25,000 donated to WEG, a Polk County enterprise?

Why are there no press releases issued from the TDA – the RC Librarian sends them regularly? Why aren’t they supported?

How much does your website cost to maintain?

What is your marketing brand, direction, and implementation schedule?

In Greenville SC, the TDA provided a dog park for their residents. In Henderson, their TDA built a park with a proud sign displaying that the TDA funds paid for it. What is the TDA doing for OUR local residents or are we just funding a Destination by Design agency? Where is our leadership?

Why not support a Pony Club? or a public riding stable since the support of TIEC in Polk County is so important?

 

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