Space Coast Tourist Development Council Announces New Board Members, Searches For Permanent Director
By Space Coast Daily // December 26, 2018
TDC IN SEARCH OF NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – During the December Space Coast Tourist Development Council meeting a slate of five new members were announced, with Brevard County Commission Chairman Kristine Isnardi appointing four of the five newcomers.
The Brevard County Tourist Development Council was established to promote growth, development and quality of tourism on the Space Coast.
The TDC board’s main function is to oversee the county’s expenditure of the 5 percent tourist tax, which is projected to be more than $16 million during the current budget year.
The Brevard County Tourist Development Council consists of nine members appointed by the County Commission that oversees the Tourist Development Tax (Resort Tax), a 5 percent tax on the total rental amount collected from every person or other party who rents, leases, or lets for consideration living quarters or accommodation in any hotel, apartment hotel, motel, resort motel, apartment, apartment motel, rooming house, mobile home park, recreational vehicle park, or condominiums for a period of 6 months or less.
Joining the TDC board are District 2 Brevard County Commissioner and Vice Chair Bryan Lober; media, special event and sports management/promotion entrepreneur Giles Malone; Palm Bay City Council member Harry Santiago; West Melbourne City Council member Andrea Young; and Anna Palermo, an account executive for Spectrum Reach.
Rounding out the nine-member board are Bob Bauger, CEO of the Baugher Hotel Group; Laurilee Thompson, owner of Dixie Crossroads; Tim Deratany, owner of Deratany Consulting; and Debra Green, general manager of the International Palms Resort in Cocoa Beach.
Leaving the board are former District 2 County Commissioner Jim Barfield; Palm Bay Holiday Inn Express General Manager PK Kapur; Palm Bay Mayor William Capote; Titusville Mayor Walt Johnson; and Tom Williamson, General Manager and Partner at Ocean Partners Associates.
TERM LIMITS FOR TDC BOARD MEMBERS
Earlier this month, Brevard County Commission voted 3-2 to put in place term limits for Tourist Development Council members.
Commission Vice Chair Bryan Lober put forth the proposal during the regular meeting of the commission on Dec. 4 at the Government Center in Viera.
Commission Chair Kristine Isnardi and Commissioner John Tobia voted with Lober in favor of the proposal. Voting against term limits for TDC members were Commissioners Rita Pritchett and Curt Smith.
“The voters want us to have term limits, and we are delegating to some degree what we would otherwise be doing to an advisory board, and I think it is important to have comparable term limits, or even more stringent term limits,” said Lober.
Lober’s proposal would term out TDC members who have had two consecutive four-year terms and calls for this action to be retroactive for current TDC members when their term expires.
“I totally agree with term limits and it is reestablishing the public trust and whether or not our TDC has done anything remotely questionable,” said Isnardi.
Lober’s proposal also stipulates that former executive directors of the Space Coast Office of Tourism could not be eligible to become a member of the TDC for at least two years after leaving their executive director position.
TDC IN SEARCH OF A NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Eric Garvey, who served three and a half years as executive director of the Space Coast Office of Tourism, resigned his position in July to take a job as Chief Operating Officer with Baugher’s Hotel Group, which owns the Four Points Sheraton in Cocoa Beach, Cocoa Beach Suites hotel and the Radisson Resort in Cape Canaveral.
Bonnie King is acting as the Brevard County Tourist Development Council’s interim executive director until a replacement is hired. She is scheduled to retire in June.
The recruiting firm SearchWide Global was hired by the county to vet candidates applying as the new TDC director.
Garvey, who was paid $128,546 annually by Brevard County at the time of his resignation, was the highest-paid department head in Brevard County government.
It is expected that the list will be pared down to the top group of candidates, with interviews of each by county officials following sometime next month. A final selection will then be made, possibly as soon as January.
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