The Crossville city council agreed to hire a retail consultant firm to help the city recruit retail and restaurant businesses to the community.
The council spent several hours hearing from three different companies that provide the services during a work session held on May 26. The three firms that spoke to the council included Retail Strategies, R360 and Buxton. All three companies pitched their services to the city with the idea that they could help increase sales tax collections by recruiting large retail stores and restaurant chains.
A three year contract with one of the firms would total around $100,000. All the firms do detailed market analysis, and study the so-called market leakage or dollars spent by residents that go to other locations in order to see if a Crossville location would be feasible based on the local spending. Harris asked that the item be placed on the council's agenda and started her discussion saying that a decision was needed in order “to get this ball rolling.”
The firm called r360 is located in Birmingham Alabama and according to council member Pamala Harris had the more flexible contract for the city. The council had placed funds in the 2016-17 budget for hiring a retail consultant and Harris moved to choose r360 as the firm to work with the city. Harris' motion received a second from councilman Jesse Kerley. After a brief discussion, the motion was amended to add that the city would begin negotiations with the firm.
The motion was approved unanimously.