Friday, June 5, 2015

From; Zack Matheny To; Jason Cannon On Wed, Nov 12, 2014 at 8:43 AM


I am glad that you joined the meeting on Monday and I noticed you writing copious notes. I am curious and would like to understand:

1. What out of the meeting did you learn through your notes and what is your plan as the CEO of Downtown?

2. Is DGI prepared to take a stand? They have in the past and partnered with the City, so, I am wondering what are your thoughts as CEO of downtown. A wise person with PR experience told me recently, that you really need to get out in front of a story or situation with at least a statement, but, we haven't heard anything from DGI.

3. When is the branding strategy etc going to begin?

4. What exactly are the top 10 things DGI is working on now and wants to accomplish in the next 6 months?

5. What do you really feel as CEO have been DGI accomplishments that last 12 months of your tenure.

These are fairly simply questions that should not take ling to answer and I really do not need a long response, just an understanding.

For the most part, you should have these answers already written. therefore, I would greatly appreciate a quick response so that we may be able to answer these questions to our constituents, downtown business owners, and residents.

Zack Matheny
From: Zack Matheny To: Jason Cannon
Sent: Thursday, November 13, 2014 2:47 PM

Cc: Hoffmann, Nancy; <>; Gary Brame; Sam Simpson;; Mike Barber; Mark Prince

Subject: Re: DGI - Downtown events - Plan

Jason, I guess you have no intention of responding to my questions.

I have to say, as the City Councilman with over 80% of downtown, I had hoped we would have a working relationship.

Since you do not have the courtesy to send me your priorities for the upcoming year, I can only imagine there are none.

These should have been simple answers.

I do not take this lightly and feel that the City Council, community, BID payers deserve better.

Zack Matheny
From: Cannon, Jason To: Matheny, Zack
Date: Thursday, November 13, 2014 6:07:24 PM

Cc: Hoffmann, Nancy; Vaughan, Nancy (Mayor); "Gary Brame"; "Sam Simpson"; Chaney, Dawn; Barber, Mike; "Mark  Prince"; Timothy L. Sexton; Derek Ellington; Westmoreland, Jim; Parrish, David; eric@; Dianne Ziegler; Hoffmann, Nancy; Nancy Vaughan; Gary Brame

Subject: RE: DGI - Downtown events - Plan

Councilman Matheny,

I appreciate your questions, and I apologize for the delay in responding to you. As you know, there is a great deal ongoing in Downtown, and I appreciate your patience.

DGI is obviously concerned with the violent incidences that occurred Downtown last week. As noted in other communications, we are grateful for the leadership you and our other city leaders have shown in addressing this issue. As an organization focused on the economic growth of Downtown, creating and maintaining a safe environment, free from violence, is absolutely vital if our efforts are to be successful.

The branding campaign is set to launch with an impressive four-page spread in the December issue  of O’Henry Magazine. I am working with our Marketing Chairman Eric Robert on the advertising  schedule going forward. Eric is currently negotiating with publications for the best rates available to  showcase the great downtown images captured in DGI’s recent photo shoot. In light of the recent  events addressed above, I am working to secure additional advertising resources than originally  budgeted.

I have identified 5 priorities for DGI that will serve us going into 2015: (1) a Data/Market Analysis for  Downtown; (2) Support on Downtown Development Projects and Prospect Assistance; (3) the  Downtown Master Streetscape Plan; (4) a Parklet Pilot Program; and (5) our Branding Campaign.

 These programs and initiatives will advance the top principles DGI’s Board identified in its strategic  planning effort to grow downtown investment and create a “cool” physical environment.

The staff and many of my Board members are actively working on these priorities each day.
I believe DGI has achieved a great deal over the past 12 months. The organization was asked to
 substantially redefine its role and responsibilities with a clear direction toward economic
 development – and we are doing that. As you know, effective in February, the City will assume the  management of street maintenance and other operations currently held by DGI. The management  of Center City Park maintenance will also transition outside of DGI. We have successfully relocated  and are now positioned to transition ownership of the Downtown Ice Rink to the Downtown  Residents’ Association. All of these efforts have been undertaken to position DGI – with the limited  staff and financial resources we have available – to spend more of its time focusing on and  supporting economic development opportunities downtown. As a result, there are several projects  I am now managing wherein DGI is playing an impactful role. Among those, as you know, is the  Cascade Saloon and the Union Square Campus – both of which stand to have a transformational  impact on downtown. Additionally, just yesterday, I held initial meetings with a developer concerning the potential redevelopment of a very prominent block of downtown. We regularly  host meetings with individuals interested in starting or expanding their business downtown.

Councilman, I too wish that we could have an amiable working relationship. Based on every communication I have with you, it feels that our interactions are adversarial. I very sincerely wish  that we could work together collaboratively to move downtown forward. I greatly appreciate your  passion and would love to have that focused in a positive way toward DGI’s efforts. Please tell me  how I can contribute to make that possible. I hope that you will receive my comments in the way  they are meant – with respect and sincerity.

Thank you,

Hat Tip; Jeff Sykes