The City Council kicked off its annual budget review with the first of three public hearings Monday night.
Recommendations were heard regarding community services, public support for the arts and federal grant money earmarked for community improvement projects.
The Convention and Visitors Bureau requested $248,323 for attractions designed to draw tourists to Columbia.
Under the bureau’s plan, which still awaits the council’s approval at the final budget hearing set for Sept. 20, the money will be spread among a variety of events. The list includes Twilight Festival and the Special Olympics as well as a “Bridal Legends Weekend” at Stephens College and a three-on-three soccer tournament at the Show-Me State Games.
The council also referred a petition — which would require the city to purchase 2 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2007— to the November ballot.
The council also modified an ordinance to allow bow hunting on some city properties. When bow hunting season opens this year on Sept. 15 archers will be allowed to hunt deer on four city properties. The measure is billed as the first step in an effort to thin Columbia’s deer population.Mayor Darwin Hindman did not attend. In his place was Third Ward Councilman Bob Hutton.