Deadwood to dole out $13K from holiday parking promo to non-profits

Broadway Parking Ramp revenue in the amount of $10,785 collected during the month-long Deadwood holiday parking promo will be distributed to non-profits prior to March 1. Pioneer photo by Jaci Conrad Pearson

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DEADWOOD — Attention, those who fundraise for non-profit ventures, Deadwood’s got some bonus bucks up for grabs in 2020. 

A holiday parking promotion that left Deadwood with $13,183.58 in revenue specifically earmarked for non-profits, has the city requesting letters of interest for entities wishing to be considered for the holiday-inspired handouts. 

As part of a partnership between the city and the chamber of commerce, city officials announced in November that metered parking would once again be free in Deadwood from roughly Thanksgiving through Christmas Day, but that any funds collected by accidental payment to the meters or donation would be earmarked for local charities. In addition, city officials announced that parking revenues generated at the Broadway Parking Ramp during the same time frame would be included, as well.

Transportation, Safety, and Public Buildings Director Tom Kruzel said inevitably change is deposited into meters during this time period and that a suggestion out of the parking and transportation committee was to donate the funds to local charities.

All parking spots outside the parking ramp that require payment were free of charge, but drivers could choose to donate any amount into the meters or kiosks and the funds will all go to local charities. The $5 fee for parking in the Broadway Parking Garage was still charged and was also included as part of the charity promotion.

Finance Officer Jessicca McKeown reported on the parking donations, collected from Nov. 28 through Dec. 26 and commissioners discussed the allocation of disbursement of funds.

A total of $10,785 was collected from the Broadway Parking Garage; $1,017.58 was collected from parking meters; and $1,381 was collected from parking kiosks, for a grand total of $13,183.58.

“Phenomenal, as far as what we got,” McKeown said. “I spoke to legislative audit, just to make sure we’re doing everything and he said you simply just have to identify the amount, where you would like to allocate it. There will not need be a budget adjustment, because we will expend it back out in ’19.”

In considering where the funds should be donated, McKeown included a list of organizations and amounts the city was unable to provide Bed & Booze funding to for 2020.

“If you choose not to expend it right away, we can put it in accounts payable to expend it out, but it would have to be paid out by March 1,” McKeown added.

Commissioner Gary Todd said that he would like to see the funds disbursed in the same spirit in which they were generated.

“In the spirit of the holidays, I would like to see it go to help local holiday events,” Todd said, citing examples of gifts for children and Santa’s Workshop. “I know they haven’t made requests to us, but it’s kind of the holiday spirit.”

This sparked a commission discussion regarding establishment of the parameters for disbursement of the funds.

Martinisko said she would like to target Northern Hills Alliance for Children and CASA.

“Because those have been shorted recently,” Martinisko said. 

Commissioner Charlie Struble added Boys and Girls Club of Lead-Deadwood to the list.

Mayor David Ruth, Jr. said he understood delaying the decision to see if some of the entities that Todd mentioned would be interested in receiving funds.

“If we were going to extend it, I would then open it up to say these other entities that have requested in the past should be given the opportunity to come and give us an explanation as to the benefits they provide for our community and why we should consider them as well,” Ruth said. “I don’t want us to be in a situation where we accidentally forget somebody that’s good or give a new group an opportunity, but not another group.”

Ruth said he and Lead Mayor Ron Everett are spearheading a new United Way mission to help improve early childhood development and learning. 

“So that could be an organization, too, that could come and ask, too,” Ruth said.

“I like the idea of putting it out there and saying, ‘Hey we’ve got some extra money,’” Martinisko said. “Even if they only get a couple hundred bucks. For many of these places, that’s a lot of money.”

On behalf of the commission, Ruth requested all organizations or agencies that would like consideration for the money have their letters of interest to the finance office by Jan. 31. A special meeting will be set by the commission Feb. 3 to review and discuss the requests, and decisions will be made public record at the Feb. 18 commission meeting.

“I just want us to do the procedure correctly and establish it correctly, so that if we continue to do this, we already have it in place and then this year would be the first year that nobody would be necessarily as aware of it, but then going forward, they would know that this is another opportunity,” said Ruth.

Letters should be addressed to: Deadwood Finance Office, 102 Sherman St., Deadwood, SD 57732

“I would encourage all holiday organizations to step up and step forward,” Todd said.

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