The public will get its first glimpse this week at a draft of the highly anticipated contract between Hilton Head Island and its designated marketing organization, the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce.
Town leaders have closely guarded details of the proposed contract, which is designed to better track how the chamber spends public dollars, but they now want residents' input on the parameters of the possible agreement.
Town Council intends to vote on the contract at its next meeting on Nov. 17, and council members said Tuesday they want concerned residents to bring their comments and questions to the council then.
"This is such a topical issue; we want to give the public ample opportunity to review it," said councilman Bill Harkins, who serves on the Finance and Administrative Committee that designed the contract.
The contract could be made available as early as Wednesday, pending one more review by chamber attorneys, but it is expected before the end of the week, town manager Steve Riley said.
The Island Packet will publish the contract online at www.islandpacket.com as soon as it is available.
Town and chamber leaders have discussed the potential contract behind closed doors for months and have only hinted at what it could include.
In the interim, Bennett, chamber board president Jay Wiendl and staunch chamber opponent Skip Hoagland have all traded barbs over the negotiations.
- Release of contract with Hilton Head chamber delayed; negotiations continue in secret, Oct. 18, 2015
- As chamber of commerce contract nears completion, Skip Hoagland brings supporters to Town Council, Oct. 6, 2015
- Hilton Head Mayor David Bennett calls out chamber of commerce, critics over contract controversy, Sept. 29, 2015
- Beaufort, Hilton Head chambers of commerce want more county funding, Aug. 23, 2015
- Chamber launches once-controversial app amid contract negotiations with town, July 31, 2015
- Hilton Head leaders seek more details in chamber of commerce spending, June 20, 2015