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PA City Council updated on new logos

The Port Arthur City Council received an update on the status of the proposed city logo/slogan though some councilmembers said it was not their highest priority.

Eric Sullivan with e.Sullivan Advertising & Design and Tiffany Hamilton, District 2 councilwoman spoke before the regular meeting on Tuesday night.

Hamilton said the project was undertaken to upgrade the professional image of the city. Furthermore, it’s a collaborative effort of all the entities in the city to all use the same logos.

She said most feedback received on the logos was positive. Residents can go to www.portarthurbranding.squarespace.com to see the logos, read the background on them and offer feedback.

Willie “Bae” Lewis Jr., District 5 councilman, asked why the change is needed for logos.

“I like the logo we have (with a sailboat and a sun with Energy City written on it). What do we gain? The logo has been there for less than 15 years. What will the new logo do for us?” Lewis asked.

Mayor Pro Tem Raymond Scott Jr. asked what would be the total cost for the logos on uniforms, decals, caps, etc. for the 650 city employees.

City Manager Brian McDougal said it would be $18,000 a year. Over a three to five year time period it would total from $50,000 to $60,000. The decals would be placed first on new vehicles and proceed from there. Not all city employees wear uniforms.

Scott said the number one priority for citizens are street repairs.

McDougal said the city can use some of the Hotel Occupancy Tax money for marketing and tourism purposes.

Keith Richard, District 4 councilman, also asked what will be done about streets.

Charlotte Moses, Position 7 councilwoman, asked how the city council got started on the new logos.

Hamilton said a year ago it was discussed during the hiring process for the current city manager with instructions to follow through.

Moses said with the money coming from HOT funds for the logos, it would not harm the budget to repair the streets.

McDougal said a portion of HOT funds could be used.

“I’m baffled why we can’t move forward when the money won’t be taken from streets. Why can’t we move forward?” Moses asked.

Hamilton said she “truly, truly” understands about costs, but “the city is blessed with CVB (Conventions and Visitors Bureau) money. This is money we would spend anyway on new T-shirts, caps, business cards, stationery and patches.”

Lewis said $1.5 million has been “laid on the table” from a year ago for repairs needed to be made to Rose Hill Manor.

“That will be taken out of HOT funds. That’s a higher priority than the logos. I think our priorities are in the wrong place,” he said.

Scott told McDougal he hasn’t seen the street program yet. He added that the council can approve the logos but he hasn’t seen the street program.

Osman Swati, District 6 councilman, said the city council is getting ahead of themselves. He said Sullivan won’t be paid until they choose a logo and he has been working on the project for 11 months.

Lewis said the issue about the logos can be placed on the May ballot.

Mayor Derrick Freeman said the main course are streets in Port Arthur, but he thinks the current logo is antiquated.

David Ball: 409-721-2427