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City officials renegotiate contract with Las Cruces Convention Center management

Las Cruces City Council members came to a conclusion mid-September regarding a contract renegotiation with the managers of the Las Cruces Convention Center.

The city and Global Spectrum, a leading private venue management company, have been operating with a five-year contract since the Las Cruces Convention Center officially opened on Jan. 1, 2011. In an effort to bring in conventions from out-of-town areas, the city is renegotiating the contract with Global Spectrum.

Robert Garza, city manager, stated that if a new contract can be worked out, it would focus on Global Spectrum’s appeal to out-of-town conventions, and less on booking local events. Global Spectrum is working hard to fix this issue, but sometimes hard work isn’t all it takes.

“We can’t blame Global Spectrum, it’s the economy,” said Ron Camunez, a citizen of Las Cruces. “[The convention center] is too small, and we, as a city, failed to adequately address that….We have some issues that clearly need to be addressed. We need to look at ourselves.”

City council members congregated on Sept. 16 to resolve this long-awaited decision. Councilors Greg Smith, Olga Pedroza, Nathan Small and Gill Sorg, and Mayor Ken Miyagishima voted to approve the new contract, while Councilor Miguel Silva voted against the contract, preferring instead to table a decision from the council.

After one month of trials and reconsiderations, city administrators and Global Spectrum officials finally settled all disputes with the former contract and negotiated a new 10-month agreement, which will go into effect on Oct. 1 and last through June 30, 2014. There will be five optional one-year terms, if both sides can agree on the extensions, and a 120-day cancellation notice must be provided if either party wants out of the contract.

“I like this contract,” said Mayor Miyagishima. “I think it’s a good one.”

City Manager Robert Garza said the new agreement should improve communications between Global Spectrum and the city.

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