Convention Center Leadership: Then and Now

By: Ryan Dearbone
By: Ryan Dearbone

But he was told that the way the bonds were written, that wouldn't happen.

"After I became convinced that information I was getting wasn't accurate, I hired a local lawyer of my own initiative, and asked him to research the ordinance that created the convention center."

The lawyer presented his findings to the City Commission in both oral and written statements saying that the city had the right to take over the convention center and put the excess money into the general fund.

Bullington says that the excess money from the first few years of the convention center never made it back to the city.

"A majority of the money went to pay the bonds and to pay the insurance and run the facility. We have not determined how much money should have been returned tot the general fund, but my estimate is five to six million."

But now the convention center is no longer in the hands of a citizen board and some changes have been made.

The first thing that has happened is the City Finance Department and City Attorney are furnishing legal and accounting services.

Right now, all decisions have to go through the convention center board which is made up of the four City Commissioners, the Mayor and the County Judge Executive.

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