As a cycling enthusiast, Ham also helps organize several races here in the Tall City.
"Midland needs events," said Ham. "There's not a lot to do around here. So we have to have events to keep people here, and busy, and engaged, and enjoying our city."
Right now Ham is gearing up to put on a bike race in conjunction with the First Baptist Church in Odessa, which will run partly through the Tall City.
"The time trial will be on Highway 191," explained Ham. "Which will be in the city, so therefore, we will have to go through the process of getting all the permits for that one."
But as Ham is discovering, getting his race approved with the city of Midland is a lot harder than it used to be.
"It does involve a little bit more work, and expense," stated Ham.
One of the biggest expense changes to the city's new Special Events Ordinance is the mandatory $2 million insurance policy, which must cover both participants and spectators.
"$1 million is what they required in the past," said Ham. "Jumping to $2 million is going to have a little expense involved. So, some of the smaller events are going to have a hard time doing that."
We sat down with Midland Public Information Officer Sara Higgins, who tells us that the city understands the difficulties in the ordinance, and plans to make necessary changes down the road.
"We will make tweaks to this as we move on," explained Higgins. "This is new to us as much as it is new to the applicants."
Higgins urges organizers to meet with the city months before their event so they can work out all the necessary details to make the event happen.
"One thing that applicants need to do is approach us as early as they can," stated Higgins. "As early as they know that they're going to have this event. And talk to us about what these changes are. We're more than happy to walk people through the process."
But several local organizers, like Ham, say the new ordinance does more to protect the city than their events. And, the recent changes could keep them from holding their events altogether.
"You need some activities," said Ham. "And if we start curtailing even some of the small activities, it's going to make Midland a less attractive place to live in."
Higgins also tells us that the Midland City Council plans to address the special events ordinance at the next city council meeting.
This is where they'll decide on obtaining General Liability insurance for Midland, which will allow them to cover certain special events down the road.
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