Council Report: Garden Club providing funds for Rose Garden, other renovations

The Fort Worth City Council, at its May 21 meeting, authorized acceptance of a donation of improvements valued at over $1 million from the Fort Worth Garden Club (FWCG) to restore the Rose Garden at the Botanic Garden, along with $150,000 to renovate meeting rooms in the Deborah Beggs Moncrief Garden Center.

They also authorized an amendment to the management services agreement with the Botanical Research Institute of Texas, Inc., for BRIT to receive just over $88,000 and 25 percent of net membership revenues for management of a joint “Grow” Membership Program. The city will receive 75 percent of net membership revenues.

District 7 Councilman and Mayor Pro Tem Dennis Shingleton accepted the donation.

“This certainly adds to the ability for that Garden to succeed,” he said. “There’s so many great things going on in the Garden these days – and more to come.”

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The initial $88,000 payment will grow by 3 percent annually, or increases in the Consumer Price Index, whichever is greater.

Also, Fort Worth Botanical Society (FWBS) membership privileges will be transferred to the Grow membership, and a waiver of fees necessary for providing increased benefits to holders of Grow Memberships was granted.

The council also authorized execution of two new license agreements with the FWCG and FWBS, as both were set to expire. The agreements include:

*The FWGC having use of certain areas within the Deborah Beggs Moncrief Garden Center and to make improvements to the Garden.

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*The FWBS having use of certain areas within the Rock Springs Building and to make improvements to the Garden.

The FWGC and FWBS are long-standing support groups of the Garden, and have significantly contributed to its success over many years.

Both license agreements authorize a waiver of construction-related permit fees.

The agreements are in accordance with Fort Worth Botanic Garden Strategic Plan.

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In November of 2016, the city council authorized the acceptance of the Plan and referred to City Manager David Cooke and staff to develop strategies and polices for its implementation.

The Plan established several key goals, including the reorganization of support groups and the increase of private support for the Garden.

The Grow membership would follow the membership fees established by the City Council in November of 2018:

*Individual, one named adult, $50.

*Family, two named adults and all children less than 18 years in household, $100.

*Lone Star Family, $30.

*Dual, two named adults $80.

*Contributing, family plus one additional adult per visit, $200.

*Supporting, family plus two additional adults per visit, $500.

*Sponsor, family plus two adults per visit and two event tickets, $1,000.

The amendment also authorizes BRIT to:

*Increase the membership fees in an amount that does not exceed the annual increase in the Consumer Price Index, subject to approval by the city manager’s office.

*Name each of the membership fee levels for marketing purposes.

*Increase the benefits provided to membership holders, such as discounts to special events or merchandise at the FWBG, subject to approval by the city manager’s office.