Friday, August 03, 2012

Standard-Examiner: Ogden Approves $108,000 to Promote Airport, Allegiant Travel Company

City council votes to "push" another wad of taxpayer dough to Allegiant Travel Company

In the aftermath of all the feverish fanfare surrounding the announcement that commercial air service will begin at Ogden-Hinckley Airport on Sept. 20, we finally get the "rest of the story" from the Standard-Examiner, which informs us this morning that "earlier this week the city council voted to amend the city’s Outdoor Recreation Company Assistance Program to allow money from the program to be pushed to the airport and the Allegiant Travel Company, who on Sept. 20 will begin commercial jet service between Ogden and Phoenix, twice a week":
Sodden questions:
  1. When, if ever, will Mayor's crack team of Ogden economic development geniuses manage to lure a business to Ogden, supposedly one of the top U.S. economic "hotspots," without compelling the beleaguered Ogden taxpayers to "push money" and "sweeten the pot"?
  2. If the Ogden-Phoenix air commute route is so danged promising, why does it require a taxpayer subsidy at all?
Just axin', folks...


OneWhoKnows2 said...

Just what do I get for $108K, peanuts and a coke?

Bob Becker said...

Allegiant's business plan, which has been I gather fairly successful, is to connect population centers with resort/vacation destinations [e.g. midwest cities with warm weather destinations].  It's only running flights to/from Ogden twice a week, which fits the "resort/vacation destination" model, rather than a general service 7 day a week airline model.

Given that, it's advertising for incoming traffic will I suspect tout Ogden's virtues as a four season recreational destination. That Ogden may benefit from joining in such an advertising campaign touting its four season vacation destination attractions sounds reasonable to me.  [Let us remember, the state of Utah plunges significant money into advertising Utah as a vacation destination, four seasons, and gets a return, it says, of four dollars for each one spent on advertising.  I suppose one could argue "if Zion is so damn beautiful, why do we have to advertise it?" but I don't think that'd be much of an argument.].   

So, well done, Ogden and Allegiant could benefit from joint advertising campaign, and if the service succeeds and expands, airline access direct to Ogden could also benefit the outdoors companies already here or that Ogden is trying to attract.

This seems a reasonable investment in development to me and a reasonable use of funds already allocated to outdoor industry development.  May work, may not, but nothing ventured, nothing gained.  

blackrulon said...

It's not Adams Aircraft money but it is still a substantial sum for a twice weekly airline.

BikerBabe said...

 Let us hope they can do better than the Welcome Center at the Frontrunner Station in Ogden.


Bob Becker said...

 "Welcome Center at the Frontrunner Station in Ogden."   English Translation:  Diner with a literature rack. 

Bob Becker said...

Way I read the story, it's money that will be used, along with the airline's funds, to pay for advertising and promotion of Ogden and the air service to it.   And we don't know from the story how long or in what markets the ads/promotions will run.   If well run, it could be a bargain for Ogden, piggy backing city funds on airline promotion funds.  

I said "could be," BR, and "if well run."   As usual, we'll have to await the outcome.  But the city having committed much more to airport upgrades to accommodate commercial air service, it wouldn't  then be wise to nickel and dime promotion of the service for which the upgrades were made.  As they say on the street, gotta spend a buck to make a buck.

We'll have to see how it turns out. 

blackrulon said...

""gotta spend a buck to make a buck." Well Ogden City has the "spend a buck" figured out after many years but when will the "make a buck" part start?

Danny said...

Remember the city also shelled out $400,000 a month ago, to "upgrade" the terminal, that itself cost millions to build and which last  year swallowed another million given by the city to Mel Kemp for "marketing".

Now another $100,000 for marketing, for a private business, and one that has done nothing, proven nothing, locally, at all.

But just remember.  It's a discount airline.  All this government cash is for a "discount" airline.

Some discount.  I'm excited about this airline, but all this corporate welfare is stupid, and is why Ogden continues to be an economic backwater - the leaders here are stupid.

But thank goodness for stupidity.  If you don't want an area to grow, and I don't, then put the stupid in charge of the growth plans.

Perfect.  Just perfect.

Bob Becker said...

The key is "reasonable" expenditures.  Year round downtown, out door ice climbing towers or flatland gondolas to WSU supported by selling Mt. Ogden Park to a developer  were not.  I'm not sure airport upgrade for twice a week commercial air service was either.  But then the voters don't pay me to make those decisions. They should, of course, but then the Mets and Saints don't pay me to make draft choices for them either.  Go figure. But once Hizzonah Mayor Mike and the Council committed big bucks to scheduled service and the terminal upgrades it required, it would not make sense to not promote the new service.  And so the $ 100k in already allocated promotional funds being made available for a joint Ogden promoting ad campaign with Allgiant seems to me a reasonable expenditure.
   Not fair to hold Hizonnah  Mayor Mike responsible for  Hizzonah Mayor Godfrey's  pipe dreams.

rudizink said...

Exactly right, Danny.  It's the "corporate welfare" aspect, which seems to be a commonality in all Ogden City "economic development" business recruitment which constitutes my main complaint.

blackrulon said...

If you believe that Silent Mike Caldwell cannot beh responsible for fiascos under Godfrey then he cannot take any credit if previous plans somehow happen to succeed. Caldwell must approve of the previous efforts to spend taxpayer money on city sponsered projects since he has not made any changes to the staff of the Ogden City business planning division. By the way has Caldwell returned any of the post election campaign donations he received from Leeham?

Smaatguy said...

The speed at which the airport improvements came about is interesting... if you think its goi.g to be 400k....think again me thinks.

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