Tupper village approves ROOST marketing contract

TUPPER LAKE – After some delay, the Tupper Lake village board has unanimously approved a tourism marketing contract with the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism.

ROOST placed the sole bid on the town and village boards’ joint request for proposal for a destination marketing organization. The draft of the request was developed by the Tupper Lake Chamber of Commerce and later agreed upon, with some slight modifications, by both boards.

The Tupper Lake town board passed a resolution in March to approve an $80,000, one-year contract with ROOST for Tupper Lake. That board’s resolution was contingent upon an even-split payment agreement with the village board. That means any grant money obtained by either municipality would be taken off the top of the total cost of the ROOST contract.

The town board updated that resolution earlier this month after the village board abstained from committing to the contract until it was updated to reflect a three-year contract.

Village trustees also held off passing the resolution to support the ROOST contract until it could be determined if the village could redirect $30,000 from a waterfront grant and $20,000 from a 90-Miler canoe race grant to the ROOST contract.

Village Mayor Paul Maroun said Monday that state Department of State officials recently approved of the village redirecting $25,000 from those grants for the next two years.

“We don’t have a commitment for the third year, the last year, but we’ll keep working toward that goal,” Maroun said.

Maroun told the board members that they should consider moving forward with the contract, which he called a “big step forward” for Tupper Lake.

The Piercefield town board also passed a resolution in February, saying it would contribute $5,000 annually for three years toward hiring a destination marketing organization like ROOST.

With everything split evenly between the town and the village, each municipality would now be responsible for $25,000 annually.

Village Clerk Mary Casagrain said that amount is included in the tentative village budget, in the same place funding for the chamber of commerce events coordinator position was. That position is currently held by Michelle Clement, who announced earlier this year that she wouldn’t renew her contract. Clement is staying on as events coordinator until she finishes a couple of projects and will probably step down by June.

Village Trustee Rick Donah asked if ROOST would open a visitor center in Tupper Lake this summer. Chamber of commerce President Adam Boudreau, who was at the meeting, said a visitor center was included in the contract and that the chamber would help run it. Boudreau said the visitor center would also be manned by a ROOST employee.

“We will probably man that partially with our volunteers that we use, so there will be some locals in there,” Boudreau said.

Both boards have discussed seeking money from the Franklin County Tourism Advisory Committee, but nothing has been solidified yet.

Contact Shaun Kittle at 891-2600 ext. 25 or skittle@adirondackdailyenterprise.com.