Mayor Creates Committee for Convention Center

AUGUST 10, 2005 - Posted at 8:43 a.m. CDT

JONESBORO, AR - Mayor Doug Formon has revealed a plan to create an advisory committee to explore economic options for bringing a convention center to Jonesboro.

"I want my administration to be good stewards of taxpayer money," said Formon, "and I would like to seek good advice from some financial leaders in our community."

Missouri-based hotelier John Q. Hammons announced in July his desire to build a hotel in Jonesboro, hinging on the city government agreeing to build an adjoining 65,000-square-foot convention center.

The committee will consist of alderman Harold Perrin, Joe Williams, Jennus Burton, Wallace Fowler and Barry Ledbetter.  Perrin, Williams, Fowler and Ledbetter all have backgrounds in banking and business, while Burton is Arkansas State University's Vice President for Finance & Administration.

"Both Harold Perrin and myself want to make sure we do what is best for the city.  We want these individuals to assist us in exploring options to make this a worthwhile project for the city of Jonesboro and for our citizens," said Formon.

The ad hoc committee must be approved by city council before it begins work.

"Jonesboro is growing by leaps and bounds, and I want to explore whether 'financially' this opportunity can work for our city," said Formon.