At the Council meeting of February 4, 2014, Mayor Rowe relegated a pro bono George Hotel economic impact analysis by renowned management consultant Dr. Dorothy Riddle to the status of a "citizen submission".
Dr. Riddle has been working on the analysis since April 2013, after discussing with Town of Gibsons officials and staff. "During the period of April, 2013, to January, 2014, both the Director of Planning, and the CAO, were aware that I was undertaking an economic impact analysis", she said in the council meeting. "I advised him [Director of Planning], and subsequently, the CAO, that I would be preparing a pro bono economic impact analysis, for council, since the town did not have the in house capability to conduct such an analysis, did not have the budget to hire an consultant and I had years of experience in conducting such analyses." See the full text of the Economic Impact Report.
In spite of the prior knowlege of this work, Mayor Rowe was not willing to accept this report. "If council decides to request further economic analysis of the proposal, I expect it will follow the usual process of developing terms of reference, requesting proposals, and providing the report as part of its public process."
Dr. Dorothy I. Riddle, CMC, is a certified management consultant with 27 years of experience in economic analysis and feasibility studies in 84 countries, including studies on drivers of successful tourism and hospitality development. For more on her background, see www.servicegrowth.com.
Key Findings of Analysis of the Probable Economic Impact of The George Hotel and Residences on the Town of Gibsons:
- The George as proposed could cost Gibsons more than it would gain.
- Every benefit listed by the proponent (staffing levels, conference space, spa facitily) is questionable when analyzed against industry benchmarks.
- The George Hotel as proposed appears to have a negative profit margin (-45.5%) and could become a liability for taxpayers.
- There is a potential win-win solution within the philosophy of the OCP.
Full transcript of the interchange, from the Town of Gibsons audio recording of the meeting: Dr._Dorothy_Riddle_Inquiry_to_Mayor_Rowe.pdf.