The National Little Britches Finals Rodeo is staying in Pueblo, for now. A contract agreement was reached and approved by the rodeo’s executive board Thursday.
The NLBFR has made Pueblo its home for the last six years. When word spread the rodeo wanted more money from the city and county for scholarship funds, there was concern it would pull out of Pueblo and head for greener pastures.
According to a spokesman with the Pueblo Chamber of Commerce, the chamber and rodeo board were able to iron out a few misunderstandings and work toward an arrangement that should make all parties happy.
The rodeo wants to double the amount of money they give to participating youngsters in the form of college scholarships. Currently, they shell out $60,000 worth of scholarships and want to increase that amount to $120,000. "That's what we strive for, with National Little Britches. To make sure that they can go on to the next level and to college," says Robert Lay, President of the Executive Board for the NLBFR.
And yet some questioned how the city and county could afford to help the rodeo do this. And more than a few were concerned they would use taxpayer money to keep the rodeo in town. The chamber of commerce assures KKTV 11 News, they will not increase the amount of taxpayer money already going to the rodeo for these scholarships. Instead they are looking for support from private entities.
Meanwhile, the President of the executive board for the rodeo says, he is pleased with the chamber's level of communication and ability to find solutions. The board agreed to accept a one-year contract to stay in Pueblo. At the end of that contract they will have the opportunity to sign for an additional two or four years making a long term commitment.