Theatre travels on Easy Street

Re: Council fails to grasp economic lessons, Letters, May 3.

To The Editor,

Re: Council fails to grasp economic lessons, Letters, May 3.

Were I to run a business where I had to pay no rent, no hydro, no maintenance and no taxes, I would consider myself on Easy Street.

The society that runs the Port Theatre is in this enviable position.

The city owns the “civic theatre” and so pays no taxes on the $1 million plus facility, and as owner, pays for all of the maintenance, repairs and insurance as required, it heats the building and pays the hydro.

This is done in part through a grant to the Port Theatre Society which was set up to get the theatre operational and to keep the facility open for public use.

Since opening, the society has taken on the job of “promoters”, bringing in acts and shows that would never have been financially viable.

This is great culturally for those members of the public that can afford the ticket price.

Might I question though, given all of the advantages listed above, why did the society need to come, hat in hand to council, for even more financial support?

Why is it that what should be more than enough, is not enough?

Next year, will we see the same outstretched hand, will we see requests for even more funding?

Can we say, that in these economic times, people are not buying as many of those high-priced tickets, therefore must we additionally subsidize those fewer numbers of patrons who can afford these  entertainments?

Our councillors should look closer before spending more of our tax dollars.

Alan MacKinnon

Nanaimo