Town picks 2 percent lodging tax recipients

The Town of Coupeville announced the 2019 funding year’s 2-percent Lodging Tax Revenue grant awards.

Seven applicants will receive money. The total amount awarded was $33,250.

“We are very lucky to have all of these nonprofits doing such great work in our town,” Coupeville Mayor Molly Hughes said.

The seven applicants submitted proposals outlining the amount of funding requested and the projects they would spend it on, which are available on the town’s website at the townofcoupeville.org.

The Coupeville Town Council reviewed and scored the proposals and announced their decision on Tuesday at the latest town council meeting.

Money was awarded to the following: The Pacific NorthWest Arts School requested and received $2,500; Coupeville Chamber of Commerce requested and received $12,000; Island County Historical Museum requested $5,000 and received $4,750; Coupeville Historic Waterfront Association requested and received $5,000; Sound Water Stewards applied for $3,000 and received $2,250; Penn Cove Water Festival requested and received $3,000 and Friend’s of Ebey’s requested $5,000 and received $3,750.

Hughes and the council discussed each applicant during the meeting, weighing the benefits of funding each project.

“I think (the Chamber of Commerce) does an absolutely fabulous job of getting the word out all over the place — everything that they do seems to be getting more people to know about Coupeville,” Hughes said.

“I think it would be really good leverage on our 2 percent.”

Coupeville Historic Waterfront Association’s request for support for the 2019 Musselfest also received praise from Hughes and Councilwoman Jackie Henderson. They noted that the event brings many people to the town and is continuously growing and changing.

About the Friend’s of Ebey’s proposal, Hughes said she wished the group spent more time on its proposal, remarking that it was not a well-written request despite the nonprofit’s success in bringing people to Central Whidbey.

“They did not provide those numbers that I know that they have,” she said.

Overall, however, Hughes said the town has received “great applications” from nonprofit organizations that do a lot to benefit the Town of Coupeville.

“It’s great that they support tourism and our economy, but so many of these events are really specific to things that are special about Coupeville: mussels, our Native American history and the art culture being built in this town,” she said.

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