NORTH OGDEN -- It looks like the fireworks are back on at this year's Cherry Days celebration, but at a different location.
The city council has voted 4-1 to spend $20,000 on a fireworks show for the city's annual July 4 celebration. Councilman Dave Hulme voted against the expenditure.
Because of a tight economy, the city did not budget any money for Cherry Days for 2012. In years past, the city has budgeted as much as $70,000.
The city has been reducing its spending on Cherry Days the past few years and has had success asking businesses for cash and in-kind donations. Community members have volunteered thousands of service hours to support the event.
Community Services Events Coordinator Lorrie Frazier said she has already received many donations for the morning and daytime events, and the city will also receive money from booth rentals at the daytime activities.
The city hadn't been able to secure funds for fireworks, which need to be scheduled and ordered right away if there is to be a show.
Frazier has worked to get the costs as low as possible for the fireworks show.
One way she did that is by moving the location from Weber High School, which the city has to rent, to Barker Park, which is owned by the city.
A sound system will not be needed either.
The city is also in talks to have booth rentals at the fireworks show to make some money as well.
Frazier just isn't sure, with this being the first year to change locations and have booth rentals, if it is something that should be counted on to bring in all the money needed.
Councilman Justin Fawson said he liked the idea of the booth rentals at the fireworks show.
"I don't want to be perceived as a fireworks hater, but just because we have the budget doesn't mean we spend it," he said of money available in the budget.
Hulme agreed, saying he doesn't like the idea of spending taxpayer money on entertainment.
He offered the idea of finding 199 people to donate $100 each for the fireworks show. He believes that if people are given the option of paying for it themselves or having government pick up the tab, they will let the government do it. He would like residents to pay for it if they really want it.
Councilman Kent Bailey likes the direction community services is going with the fireworks show. While he wants residents and businesses to donate if they can, he thinks the city can set the stage for fun things to come at Cherry Days.
Entertainment will be back on the schedule because of a $4,000 RAMP grant. That funding comes from a tax approved by Weber County voters in 2004 that allows the county to impose a local sales tax of one-tenth of 1 percent, which is 1 cent on a $10 sale, to improve recreation, arts, museums and parks.
The city plans to use the RAMP grant funds for daytime entertainment, but may use it at night if the funds stretch that far.
Councilman Wade Bigler wondered if the money had to be spent on entertainment, and Community Services Director Dave Nordquist said it did or it would have to be given back to RAMP.
He explained that arts grants from RAMP are unique and not easy to get, so city officials are excited about receiving the funds.