City looks at cutting High on Ice costs

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Fort St. John City Council wants to cut the amount of money spent on the annual High on Ice Festival.

The issue was raised in a staff report presented Monday, that showed the City spent roughly $161,000 on the festival. That number includes money given to the Arts Council to run their portion, along with expenses and City staff time.

Although Council agreed the cost associated with the event should be decreased there were several ideas how. One of the ideas presented was to cut the International Competition from the event.

In this event, carvers are flown in from all over the world at the City’s expense.  The City also pays for the carvers’ hotel rooms, food, a per diem and any prize money they might win.

Councilor Lori Ackerman wants to meet with the Arts Council to get their thoughts on any changes to High on Ice. [asset|aid=1146|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=503fa361e92eb5b00465ba8cd7fbfd5c-Lori – High on Ice_1_Pub.mp3]

The City will also look at sharing the costs with the Fort St. John Arts Council and give them the opportunity to work with local community groups to get sponsors for the event.

Councilor Davies also brought up the festival’s name and asked that staff look at changing the name from High on Ice. Ice is another word for Methamphetamine.

Attached is a report provided to Council by City Staff on the 2009 High on Ice event.  This includes full budget information.

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