L.A. City Council considers providing loan for Cirque du Soleil performances
from L.A. Times - California Local News
The city's $30-million loan would allow the owner of Hollywood & Highland to make alterations to the Kodak Theatre to accommodate the acrobatic shows. The Los Angeles City Council is weighing a plan to issue a $30-million loan that would allow the owner of the Hollywood & Highland shopping mall to retrofit a theater so it can house a decade of performances by Cirque du Soleil.
Um, excuse me...if the City of Los Angeles wants to loan a circus $30 million dollars when we are so strapped for cash because they feel it will generate tourism; then make the city a partner with Cirque De Solei and give the city a piece of every ticket sale (NOT JUST THE USUAL CITY TAX...IF L.A. CITY TAXPAYERS ARE LOANING THEM MONEY SO THEY CAN DO BUSINESS...THAT'S CALLED BEING A PARTNER...AND THAT MEANS SHARE IN THE REVENUE!!!
AND THAT'S ABOUT THE BEST SPIN I CAN PUT ON THIS. But they won't do that, cause it's just a loan, not an investment, as Kevin James just reminded me on his show, just now, when I called in to discuss the item.
Kevin brought up a good point that since this is a loan, and tourism and high-ticket entertainment is down in this economy, what if they can't pay it back. IT IS A RISK!
And Zuma Dogg added, "this is money that could be used across the city to stimulate the economy throughout the city." And pondered aloud on the airwaves, "Where would they give $30 million of HUD money to this Hollywood and Highland project? HOUSING (not) and Urban Development. SURE, call revamping the Kodak Theater area "Urban Development" because it is such a blighted area. Better screw the rest of the city and pour the money into there.
Anyway, looks like council is thinking of taking money from everywhere else in the city, and dumping it in one area for a circus in a down economy. Hmmm, I'm sure they'll tell me it's a good investment, just like they said Grand Ave Project was a good investment and Alarcon's Childrens Museum loan was just a loan and would be paid back.
Garcetti says the $30 million will go to create 800 jobs. I tell you what Eric, give ZD the $30 million as Councilmember and I will be able to create a hell of a lot of more jobs than that.
CIM Group said the money would pay for alterations, including construction of a rehearsal center [YEAH, LET'S PAY FOR A CIRCUS REHEARSAL CENTER) and a sub-stage 45 feet below the existing stage.
The loan would come from the federal Housing and Urban Development Department under a program that requires that at least one job be created or retained for every $35,000 spent. [SCREW THE HOMELESS AND FORGET THE AFFORDABLE HOUSING OR RE-DEVELOPING BLIGHTED AREAS THAT REALLY NEED IT...LET'S GIVE IT TO THE CIRCUS FOR A REHERSAL STAGE!]
Benjamin said he did not have an analysis that explains the type of jobs that would be created by the Cirque shows. [NO PROBLEM, THINGS ALWAYS WORK OUT FINE ON THESE "WINK AND A PROMISE DEALS!"]
But CIM Group released a statement saying the events would create 858 jobs at Hollywood & Highland in the retail, restaurant and entertainment fields. [Good, Housing and Development money for waiter, cooks, clerk and cashier jobs! HIGH QUALITY STUFF!!! BIG FUTURE IN IT!"]
"The Cirque du Soleil show will be both a viable engine of activity that will protect the advances that Hollywood has made over the last 15 years and a flagship entertainment franchise for the city of Los Angeles," the statement said.
[DO YOU HAVE TO SPEND, I MEAN LOAN $30 MILLION TO "PROTECT" ALL YOU HAVE DONE OVER 15 YEARS? Must not have built a very big foundation if Cirque Du Solsuck is your only hope to "protect" your investment.]
CIM Group has gone to the council seeking financial assistance with other development projects. The redevelopment agency voted in May 2008 to provide $14.3 million to help CIM Group build a shopping center in Mid-City that contains a Lowe's home improvement store.
The Lowe's portion of the project stalled last year after CIM Group saw part of its financing disappear in the economic downturn, said Andrew Westall, a senior deputy to Councilman Herb Wesson.
Redevelopment officials also agreed to provide CIM with a $4.35-million loan to refurbish the Reseda Theater into a dinner theater. Although work was supposed to begin last year, the construction has been pushed back to spring 2010, officials said.
The average Cirque du Soleil ticket is expected to cost $110 per person, according to city officials. [HUD MONEY BEING PUT TO GOOD USE!]
Under the agreement, the Kodak will host at least 368 Cirque shows per year. As long as average attendance reaches 60% to 65% of capacity, the borrowers would be able to repay the loan, Benjamin said. [O.K.,,,YOU ARE FUCKING OUT OF YOUR FUCKING MINDS!!!! "AS LONG AS"..."AS LONG AS"...AS LONG AS IT'S 60%-65% SOLD OUT??? HELL NO! That's TERRIBLE ODDS IN THIS ECONOMY BASED ON THAT TICKET PRICE!!! AND YOU KNOW THINGS ALWAYS END UP COSTING MORE THAN YOU EXPECT! HELL...NO!!!]
So send in the clowns to "loan" $30 million to a circus. Hey, why not just take the money, give it to Blue Man Group and have them perform. NO RETROFITTING NEEDED!
BONUS LINK: Here's something from last month that I didn't see. KCET mentions Zuma Dogg in their Trutanich coverage. Kinda cool. KCET...GIVING THE DOGG MORE PROPS THAN BRUNO EVER DID! (LOL!)