The Hotel/Motel Tax Reallocation Committee, a committee appointed by City Council to manage the grant award process for the returned tax proceeds from Wonders of Wildlife, will host a mandatory question and answer session for groups interested in applying for funds.

The meetings will take place at 4:30 p.m. May 9 and May 18 in the auditorium of the Discovery Center, 438 E. St. Louis St.

Any interested party must have at least one representative attend one of the sessions to be eligible to apply. The sessions will review the history of the tax funds and the application criteria followed by a question and answer session.

The funds are available for capital grants to Springfield not-for-profit organizations that promote tourism, recreation, education and local economy. The application criteria and initial letter of intent form can be downloaded at prior to the meeting.

Grant awards have ranged from $17,500 to $200,000. The project criteria states that proposals for projects less than $10,000 will be given lower priority.

The committee will make a final recommendation after reviewing applications in August. Applicants submitting full applications will be contacted about the results. Once contracts are executed through the city, applicants can request funds assuming that 50% (dollar-for-dollar) matching funds are invested in the project as certified by City of Springfield Finance Director Mary Mannix Decker.

WOW terminated its grant agreement in 2011 and agreed to forego receipt of all Hotel-Motel Tax proceeds after the termination date. City Council authorized 60% of the funds be reallocated to entities that qualify to receive said funds under the Feb. 3, 1998 ballot, under the terms and conditions Council adopted in Special Ordinance No. 23448.

Projects Funded in 2015

  • History Museum on the Square: $125,000 for children’s activity area.
  • Discovery Center of Springfield: $17,500 for new exhibit enhancement called “Pull Yourself Up.”

Projects Funded in 2014

  • Lake Country Soccer: $201,250 for improvements to Lake Country Soccer facilities.
  • Discovery Center: $20,000 for Tornado in Action Exhibit.
  • Springfield Art Museum: $17,296.

Projects Funded in 2013

  • Discovery Center of Springfield: $22,500 for new exhibition enhancement called “Bed of Nails.”
  • History Museum on the Square: $125,000 for installation of new exhibitions at its new location on Park Central Square.
  • Springfield Art Museum: $27,351 for HVAC and climate control improvements.
  • Springfield Little Theatre: $45,323 for reconstructing and reconfiguring the balcony.

For more information, contact Leslie Forrester, chair, 417-862-2787 or Cora Scott, City of Springfield Director of Public Information & Civic Engagement, 417-864-1009.