Montgomery considers tourism, marketing options in post-coronavirus economy

The Montgomery Economic Development Corp. met via Zoom on May 18. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)
The Montgomery Economic Development Corp. met via Zoom on May 18. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)

The Montgomery Economic Development Corp. met via Zoom on May 18. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)

The Montgomery Economic Development Corp. is considering its tourism and marketing options given the new economic landscape in the ongoing pandemic.

At its virtual meeting May 18, the corporation heard a report from City Administrator Richard Tramm on the city’s future marketing and tourism options. Although there had been plans to create a job listing for this purpose, Tramm said the economic landscape has been dramatically altered by the coronavirus outbreak.

“Certainly we’re not likely to get much travel from far off,” Tramm said. “And a lot of our marketing, we may have to realize we need to deal more local than we were considering before.”

Tramm said the city would likely explore social media options “for the foreseeable future” and may contract out services to help with the city’s image. He mentioned a public works project to paint some parking curbs in the city to match the Texas flag as an example of a small, affordable project to establish and preserve the city’s image and character.

MEDC President Rebecca Huss suggested the board could try and find creative ways to get people connected to the city, such as a scavenger hunt. Huss said public art and natural beauty is something that could be valuable when people want to make trips to uncrowded public spaces.

Utility grants, festivals and sales tax

  • Two businesses have applied for the utility grant the MEDC created at its last meeting. Tramm said coordinating the grant has taken a very small amount of time and effort from city staff.

  • Two festivals provided updates on their celebrations: Montgomery Mudbugs & Music Festival is pushing its date back until the state allows events again, and Tramm said he has also been communicating with Southern Star Runners to finalize plans for its October celebration.

  • Although the full impact of the coronavirus on the city’s sales tax revenue is still unclear, MEDC member Julie Hutchinson said the corporation has been very conservative with its budget expectations so far.

By Andy Li
Originally from Boone, North Carolina, Andy Li is a graduate of East Carolina University with degrees in Communication with a concentration in Journalism and Political Science. While in school, he worked as a performing arts reporter, news, arts and copy editor and a columnist at the campus newspaper, The East Carolinian. He also had the privilege to work with NPR’s Next Generation Radio, a project for student journalists exploring radio news. Moving to Houston in May 2019, he now works as the reporter for the Conroe/Montgomery edition of Community Impact Newspaper.


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