Colton, Calif., city officials are mulling over a nearly $1 million project to develop a regional marketing campaign to promote its retail sector – including the Miracle Mile of RV dealers – in hopes of bringing more sales tax dollars into the city.
“We’d like the council to set aside $1 million to help us prime the pump and promote Colton as a major destination for retail opportunities,” said Assistant City Manager Mark Nuaimi. “We would create a mechanism whereby the city could serve as the catalyst to get a message out that there are opportunities to spend your sales taxes here and we have significant industries in which to do that.”
Nuaimi said that 32% of the city’s sales tax revenue comes from vehicle sales, primarily from the city’s Miracle Mile.
Sales of recreational vehicles nationally are down 34% from last year, said Frank DeGelas, owner of Mike Thompson’s RV Superstores – one of seven dealers in Colton.
Riverside and San Bernardino counties have lost three RV-related companies in the last nine months – La Mesa RV in San Bernardino, Weekend Warrior Trailers Inc., which closed two factories in Perris, and National RV Inc. in Perris.
Nuaimi said it would behoove both the city and the RV dealers to join in a branding partnership that would bring shoppers to Colton.
“The problem is the (RV) industry is in pretty severe consolidation and we need the city’s help to pull things together,” DeGelas said. “The city of Colton gives us a name. The non-RV person doesn’t know Mike Thompson’s, but all of us together, then Colton doesn’t sound like Nowheresville, USA.”
Council members had several questions about Nuaimi’s proposal, including how the money would be spent and why so much – nearly 25% – would be allocated to Industrial Strength Advertising. Requesting more information, the council tabled the project.