A week after his inauguration, Mayor Michael Hancock really takes the reins today. This morning, he'll hold his first Mayor-City Council meeting (five of the reps are complete newbies -- unlike Hancock, who was on council for eight years). That'll be followed by the initial gathering of Hancock's National Western Stock Show Working Group. And members of the group will definitely have their work cut out for them.
Right after Hancock won the election -- and he was about to take a quick vacation -- the Gaylord Entertainment went public with its deal to build a hotel/convention/center/resort complex in Aurora, with a $300 million assist from that city. Meanwhile, the National Western Stock Show revealed that it was ready to saddle up and leave Denver in favor of a new Aurora complex. Between Gaylord and the Stock Show, many of the town's toughest lawyers and lobbyists are already riding for the Aurora brand.
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It won't be easy to rustle the Stock Show from Denver -- particularly if the folks there are looking for $150 million from Denver voters. City council already has its own committee studying the Stock Show -- chaired by Judy Montero and Charlie Brown, who was quick out of the gate with his own "Ride for the Brand: Keep the Stock Show in Denver" campaign. When he set up this working group, Hancock made sure it included Brown, as well as a few of the lawyers and lobbyists who hadn't already signed on with Gaylord and/or the National Western and other city stakeholders.
During his inaugural speech, Hancock offered this: "And yes -- we are going to find a win-win-win solution to the challenges and opportunities facing the National Western Stock Show."
Lassoing a win-win-win solution could be a tough ride, but Hancock's definitely back in the saddle today.
More from our Calhoun: Wake-Up Call archive: "More dispensaries than Starbucks stores in Denver? So what?"