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Bemidji City Council: Management firm for BREC will be chosen

The committee that interviewed the two potential management firms for the Bemidji Regional Event Center has made its choice.

The Bemidji City Council has been asked to approve the committee's unanimous choice of VenuWorks, the firm that manages the Alerus Center, during the council's regular meeting at 7 p.m. Monday at City Hall.

VenuWorks and Global Spectrum, which operates the FargoDome, both responded to the city's request for proposals in May. City staff and consultants examined the proposals, but were unable to choose a favorite.

To break the apparent tie, city and Bemidji State University representatives sat in with the firms Aug. 3-4 as the firms, on separate days, to interview potential general manager candidates for the BREC job.

Based on those interviews, the firm selected its top choice as VenuWorks, wrote City Manager John Chattin in a memorandum included in the City Council agenda packet.

"The unanimous recommendation of the group is that the council authorize contract negotiation with VenuWorks," he wrote.

Chattin wrote that the negotiations are expected to take about one month, during which time the firm also would undertake a national search of general manager candidates.

"Additional interviews may also be conducted and the GM would then be hired at the same time at contract negotiations conclude," he wrote.