FULTON, Ill. — The Fulton City Council filled the tourism coordinator position after a short closed session on Monday. The council also approved salary increases for city workers that reflect the regional average.

Newly appointed Tourism Coordinator Deb Ervin, according to Interim City Administrator Randy Balk, is a Fulton native who currently lives out of town and was one out of the four candidate interviewed. She will take on a 30-hour work week. Balk mentioned her experience in hospitality, and other facets of tourism.

“Just delighted to have her in this position,” said Alderwoman Barb Mask. “She has a lot of contacts, she has a lot of skills, she’s very enthused about Fulton and its future... Our tourism committee is most eager to meet with her.”

For three city hall staffers, wages became a bit more competitive – two 5-percent increases bring those workers to about $16 and $20 per hour, and one 12-percent increase brings another to about a $15-per-hour wage. Balk said the increases were made to make Fulton’s city pay comparable to similar municipalities.

After city business, Gary W. Anderson Architects presented a concept plan for the historic Fidelity/Drives Building. Three members of the team presented a potential multi-phase build of a banquet hall upstairs and community center on the main floor. The group envisions taking out the front staircase for a grade-level entryway. The base floor, separated on screen by A, B, C, D, E and F, listed ways to break out the space into a community center.

Principal architect Gary Anderson, his partner Jennifer Spencer and project architect Aaron Holverson have recently been booked to recreate spaces for banquets, weddings and event spaces. That is what they presented to a full room at Fulton City Hall on Monday night.

The structure is more than 100 years old, and has been a topic of debate and discussion since the city took it over in 2010. Starting this year, a fundraising committee with council and community members sought and achieved a monetary goal, through grants and gifts, of $350,000, which was the estimated amount for renovations and ADA compliance.

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