For many years merchants watched the CVB play at bringing business downtown, never did they really succeed. Fees to join were too high, return on investment far too low. The people who ran the CVB made it like a ladies-who-lunch club. It was nothing more than a social club for those who were insiders. A complete change of staff was long overdue.
San Ramon is not just talking about getting out of the CVB -- they did it at the last council meeting. Hundreds of thousands of dollars were given to the CVB each year, no benefit could ever be shown to the city. I applaud them for taking their money and leaving. The CVB has no benefits for small business, nor does the Chamber. Both organizations have made themselves into social clubs for the prominent and large business owners to the strict exclusion of small businesses.
If the new head of the CVB wants to gain support from the downtown businesses he needs to promote something other than the Palm Event Center and Concannon winery. Nothing small or local about either of those. I have traveled throughout the country and have seen so many travel guides in hotels that actually promote businesses. It works and it is well past time for the CVB to try it.