View Full Version : Roadblock
01-23-2010, 02:04 PM
Ok we called our city hall to get the business lic. and permits. And we found out that we have to go in front of the city council to see if they want to vote in the use of a haunted attraction. My issue is they want me to pay a non-refundable fee of $1100. $105. inspection permit, $52. occupancy permit, $25. misc. permit, $50. fire permit, and $50. health permit. And they still tell me they don't want it in town. I don't want them to just to keep my money. I have invested way to much of my own money into this.
Has anyone else had to go through this with the city? All info would help alot, I also will be going in front of the city council over this issue. I like to have as much info to take with me to help my case.
01-26-2010, 11:15 AM
No one wants to comment?
01-26-2010, 11:54 AM
This is hard to comment on. Every city is different, every councilman is different. Im sure lots of folks could unload on there cities BS and officials, but it would not help you. Im sorry. all I can say is Run for council. that or figure out who does not want it and change their mind. Have you had a previous location that did good works (gave to charity ext.) Find out why they do nat want you and change that perception.
How many city meetings have you attended? I recommend you attend as many as possible and be polite. It sounds to me like they dont want you and are trying to red tape and fee you into moving on. I think they will find another way to make you go if you pay all the fees. But no one here has as much information as you do.
Your relation ship with the city is a relationship, It sounds like you are breaking up. some relationships get repaired, but the odds are against it.
I would look elsewhere if I were you.
Im sorry none of this is what you wanted to hear, but there is no easy solution to your issue.
01-26-2010, 11:55 AM
You need to find someone to talk to in the city you want to do the haunt in.
Don't just call on the phone, go to the office.
One thing this world has lost is personal touch.
Sure they may look at you like your crazy but then you will know not to try.
If they open their arms and try and work with you when you show up.....your good to go.
If all else fails.......you better get some more money and bring that the next time....lol
01-26-2010, 12:46 PM
I agree with the others. Your best bet is to develop a presentation and ask them if you can come before them with it prior to making a financial commitment. It does seem odd that you'd be required to pay all the fees to establish a business prior to knowing if you will be permitted to operate. It sounds like there may be a miscommunication. In your presentation, discuss the role you intend to play in supporting other area businesses, giving to or supporting charity, conducting food and blood drives, etc. Share your mission statement and the goals and objectives of your organization and most importantly discuss your commitment to safety and professionalism! Request their assistance in helping you to fulfill your goals and objectives in all these areas. Like was already said by Allen, you may need to change their perception. It's best to find out now whether you will have the support or the hindrance of the city officials. If they are determined to stop you, they have the ability to do so, unfortunately.
We had one city in which we had researched and had the opportunity to received a grant, that's right free money, to be part of a downtown revitalization program in a historic theatre building. The location and building were awesome! Unfortunately, after meeting with the city officials, we came to realize that they were set on preventing us from operating a haunted attraction in their city. They actually even told us after we successfully addressed a number of concerns with solutions that they'd keep them coming. Today I'm grateful that they let us know early on that they had no interest in changing their minds. They saved us a lot of heartache in the long run. We went to another city and we have been hugely embraced and supported! :)
Best of luck to you with this and please post an update to let us know your progress.
01-27-2010, 01:37 PM
First off, I agree with the standing advice. Knowing who you are, and providing a clear definition of what you plan is the most likely route to success. The importance of face to face relationships in getting things done is inversely related to population, the lower the population the higher the need for relationships. Large cities have seen and codified everything and are much more aware of the need to treat everyone the same from a legal CYA standpoint.
Sell your way in is the smart thing.
Having said that, I'd be interested to know why you have to 'go in front of a council' to be able to open a business. It sounds like you want a year round presence or at least occupancy which may make a difference, but, have you checked to see presidence on having to make a public plea or presentation to get a permit to open your attraction? The last thing anyone, including you, wants is to have a lawyer involved but if you can get a free initial consult I'd at least ask if it's legal to make you present. Making you sing and dance at a meeting for a permit or permission to engage in commerce would expose them to considerable legal recourse on your behalf.
ie. do the members engage in a business that could stand to benefit from stipulations they place on you? It sounds pretty sketchy to me.
02-04-2010, 07:46 PM
Well the city got back with us and they said they would wave the 1100 fee if we open our consession stand and gift shop as an all year round operation. Plus it would benefit us since we have about 6 parades a year on the street we are on.
I'll keep you all informed as comes along
02-04-2010, 07:52 PM
Andrew, thats the wierdest thing I have ever heard but if it works... Thats Great!
Congrats on the approval.
02-04-2010, 08:26 PM
I agree...very weird...but congrats none the less!
Missouri is a weird place... remind me to stay out of your town, I may mysteriously disappear and no one will ever know!
02-05-2010, 02:43 PM
That actually sounds like a great opportunity.
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