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New management for Peoria's Marriott Hotel Complex

The Pere Marquette Hotel in downtown Peoria has a new manager. The hotel will maintain the Marriott flag, but First Hospitality Group of Chicago takes over as third party manager July 18, 2014. 

Developer Gary Matthews says he is hoping to have a simultaneous ribbon cutting for the new Courtyard Marriott. Matthews says half the Pere’s revenues come from conference and ballroom space. He says the Pere will operate better with local managers.

"FHG has a record of working with local communities. They are not in a hurry to bring in outside people to manage and that’s what I was looking for. I wanted inside management. I wanted inside marking. And I wanted them to work with the Civic Center and that’s what these people have a record of doing.”

Joe LoMonaco is the new manager of the Pere Courtyard Marriott.

The move required Peoria City Council approval given the roughly $36 million taxpayer investment. Council approved the move 9 to two. Members Chuck Weaver and Jim Montelongo voted no.

The City of Peoria also has new chief legal counsel. Don Leist is coming from McHenry County. He’s making $140,000 a year, with moving and relocation allowances dependent upon him remaining employed as the city’s legal counsel for 24-consecutive months.