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Council treads carefully with logo decision

Efforts by the Culpeper Tourism Department to spiff up the town's image by adopting a new logo have town council members treading carefully.

Since the Culpeper Town Council broached the subject in November of possibly adopting a logo used in marketing efforts for some of its signage and promotional materials there has been a great deal of discussion both pro and con.

At it's Dec. 11 regular meeting the council could clarify when the official town “Minuteman” logo will be used and when and if the new “branding” image will be in play.

The intent of the new branding look was to give a more easily recognizable look and to match tourism department branding efforts.

Town staff is set to present to the council specific lists of approved use for the Minuteman logo and the new “brand.”

The official town logo with the Minuteman flag and the words “Don't Tread on Me” and “Liberty or Death” would be used on such things as town letterhead, resolutions, proclamations, plaques, press releases, nameplates, agendas, annual reports, the town flag, employee business cards, vehicle decals and carpet mats – basically “anything that represents the town in an official capacity, such as a document or transaction,” according to the staff memo.

The branding logo with “Culpeper” in bold letters across the Blue Ridge Mountains at sunset would be used on such things as town signage, social media pages, in recruitment efforts and at promotional events – basically anything that is “aimed at identifying the town to potentially new customers, recipients, travelers, organizations or groups,” according to the memo.

The council also will be presented with a Memorandum of Understanding between the Culpeper Arts Committee and The Choice, Inc. on East Davis Street that would allow the arts committee to hang paintings in the facility's first-floor meeting space Friday evenings, Saturday and Sunday at no charge. The arts committee could also use the basement for the committee's writers group.

The Choice, a staffing agency based in Washington, D.C., would retain the right to overrule the arts committee and use the proffered space at any time for its own purposes or for the use of third parties. Such use would displace the committee and its invitees.

Culpeper County is implementing a proration of personal property tax effective Jan. 1. The proration will apply only to motor vehicles and trailers. They will be taxed on a monthly basis for the portion of the calendar year that the vehicle is subject to taxation by the county.

The town council may consider how this will effect town revenues. Town staff recommends that the town not change its processing of personal property tax records.

On Nov. 27, the State Theatre submitted a letter requesting the local government's financial support in the form of a matching grant. The State Theatre is now requesting that the town consider issuing them a matching grant of 25 percent of whatever they receive in outside grants. If the State Theatre received the $200,000 grant for which they intend to apply in the spring, the financial impact to the town would be $50,000, according to a staff report. Funds would have to be designated from the town general fund reserves for this purpose.
Town staff recommends the council approve the matching grant.

In possible personnel actions, the council may approve amendments to polices dealing with vacation and sick leave, weather emergencies and review of criminal history record.
The above items are only tentative topics of discussion as Town Council agendas are not finalized until the Monday before meetings. Final agendas are available at meetings and online at: culpeperva.gov.

Council meetings begin at 7 p.m. in the Board of Supervisors meeting room, 306 N. Main St.
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