The Business Advisory Board (BAB) is made up of city business owners and community leaders who partner with Salt Lake City’s Department of Economic Development. Its members are appointed by the mayor and must be SLC residents and/or have ownership interest in a Salt Lake City business. BAB helps direct city economic policy, promotes small business growth, supports local entrepreneurs, and encourages businesses to relocate to our city. The BAB’s mission is to foster an equitable and robust business ecosystem as ambassadors, advocates, and advisors. The BAB’s core values are, commitment, vision, respect, collaboration, inclusivity, and impactful.
As part of an ongoing effort to keep SLC’s business community connected, the BAB is blogging synopses of our monthly meetings here. (Recordings are available to the public as well.) Here is the recap of our BAB meeting on Wednesday, May 9th:
City Council Updates
Allison Rowland updated the BAB on City Council budget discussions. Despite economic growth revenue has remained relatively flat. The Mayor’s Office has presented Council with a recommended budget which the Council is currently reviewing. The most substantial budget increase in the Mayor’s recommended budget would come from a proposed 3% salary increase for most city employees. A proposed increase in sales tax would generate a projected $25 million dollars annually.
Economic Development Updates
Roberta Reichgelt from Economic Development announced to the board that she has recommended Linda Wardell to serve on the BAB and is hopeful Linda will have an interview in the next couple of weeks. If approved, Linda may be able to begin serving on the BAB at the June meeting. Roberta has been in contact with Spice Kitchen to request that they recommend someone to serve on the BAB. Spice Kitchen has indicated to Roberta that they are looking for a suitable candidate.
The Department of Economic Development celebrated National Economic Development Week last week with tours of Kiito’s, Fisher, RoHa and Proper; four local breweries, on Tuesday. Wednesday the celebration continued with a ribbon cutting at Kaddas Enterprises’ new Salt Lake City location. The Department of Economic Development finished the week with coffee at CityByrd which was open to the public on Friday and on Saturday with an alt-eats tour of Oh Mai, The Eklektic, and Curry Fried Chicken.
The Department of Economic Development is planning on a BAB field trip to tour the west side of Salt Lake City and a small business event with the Mayor. The Mayor has requested a proposal and Roberta has requested input from the BAB for the proposal to the Mayor.
Board Member Announcements
Angela announced SLUG Magazine was holding the Brewstillery event on Saturday for local breweries and distilleries. Steve announced that he is co-producing an outdoor interactive play that will run for four weeks. Greg announced that the Downtown Summer Farmer’s Market would be starting next month. Ana announced that the opening of Square Kitchen was a success with over three-hundred attendees and that Square Kitchen has already signed fifteen agreements. Darren announced that The State Room opened a second location called the Commonwealth Room.
Minutes from the April 11, 2008 meeting were approved.
River District Chamber Update
Nigel Swaby, from the River District Chamber, came by the BAB to update all of us on the River District Chamber’s focus and priorities for 2018. They are working on the Folsom Corridor Trail. Funding has been approved and construction will most likely begin next year. A feasibility study has been ordered for daylighting a creek along the Folsom Corridor Trail. They are also focused on mitigating impediments to growth in the area including reducing crime and recruiting destination properties. Nigel announced that the Rail Events Center is now the Union Events Center and that there will soon be some new housing and arts space in the area and that on June 16, Sugar Space will host the West Side Music, Arts, and Food which will be a free event open to the public and finally that the area is looking forward to the opening of Grid City Brewery.
Utah African American Chamber of Commerce Update
James Jackson gave an update on the Utah African American Chamber of Commerce (UAACC). Started in 2009, the UAACC believes that diversity is a process and are currently focused on the recruitment and retention of diversity in the state of Utah. The UAACC has twenty non-profit members. Their main focus is on small business, business retention, and connecting small businesses to the community. Last, James announced Changing Lanes would be performing at a ribbon cutting ceremony for Lakehouse Studios.