The Utah Valley Economic Development Association will have a new home and a new funding structure beginning in 1991.
The organization's 11-member board of directors voted during a retreat last week to phase out funding from cities and increase funding from Utah County. While the association will receive a major portion of its funding from the county, it will remain an independent organization overseen by its board of directors.The association also will move to the Utah County Courthouse, which will be vacated in November by the 4th District Court. It will join other community organizations in the building, including the Utah County Travel Council, the Mountainlands Association of Governments and possibly the Provo/Orem Chamber of Commerce.
"It is really a positive move for UVEDA," said Kerry D. Romesburg, chairman of the association's board of directors. "It gives UVEDA an ongoing base of support and will make the function of UVEDA much more efficient."
The Utah Valley Economic Development Association is a non-profit, private association funded by government and private membership investments. It serves 15 cities in the Utah Valley and has a 1990 budget of $164,145.
In the past, the county provided $50,000 - 30 percent - of the association's funding and cities provided $40,000 - 25 percent of its funding. The city portion will now be picked up by the county over the next three years.
Private members provide $35,000 (20 percent) and the rest of the association's funding comes from the state.
Richard Bradford, association director, said the group will function "more consistently and efficiently if we're not dependent on several sources of funding."
"You have to justify your existence every year, and as city budgets have grown tighter and tighter that's been difficulty to do," Bradford said.
Provo Mayor Joe Jenkins said with the new funding structure, the association "will have equal responsibility to all cities in the county without feeling it has to pay preference to one (city) or another."
Utah County Commissioner Gary Herbert said the association's costs may actually be lower because of consolidation of services in the courthouse building.
For example, the various agencies may be able to share a secretary, a boardroom and a production/mail room.
The county will be able to provide the additional funding through natural growth in real estate values and other revenue sources, Herbert said.
Neither Provo nor Orem had paid their dues to UVEDA this year because of concerns about the association's operation.
"Provo and Orem hadn't paid their dues yet because we wanted to see some changes in the way UVEDA was operating," Jenkins said. "Now that UVEDA's got an incentive to change, Provo will pay its share and I imagine (Orem) will too."