Amendment to restore city funding for Overture is rejected - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Amendment to restore city funding for Overture is rejected

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MADISON (WKOW) -- The City of Madison Board of Estimates rejected an amendment to the proposed 2013 operating budget that would have restored $900,000 in funding for the Overture Center for the Arts.

Mayor Paul Soglin cut the money from his 2013 budget proposal, saying the only way to pay for it would be to use borrowed money.

"Borrowed money going into the operating budget. It is unacceptable, it's a recipe for disaster," warned Mayor Soglin at a press conference Monday morning.

Ted DeDee, the Chief Executive Officer for the Overture, says the center has already raised $2.4 million through private donations to pay its operating expenses for 2013, but for nothing more.

"The city's money also helps to sustain some of these free programs that benefit the entire community," says DeDee, who claims programs like "Kids In The Rotunda" would have to be cut.

District 4 Alder Mike Verveer offered the amendment, but did not get the four votes needed for passage.

The Board of Estimates also rejected an amendment that would have eliminated an increase in bus fare for Madison Metro riders.

Both amendments can be re-introduced to the full City Council when it meets next on October 30.

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Mayor Paul Soglin says it would be dangerous and irresponsible for City of Madison Alders to put $1 million back into next year's operating budget for the Overture Center for the Arts.

Mayor Soglin cut the money from his 2013 budget proposal, saying the only way to pay for it would be to use borrowed money.

But a majority of alders plan to offer an amendment at Monday's Board of Estimates meeting that would restore that funding, by using dollars from loan premiums.

"Borrowed money going into the operating budget.  It is unacceptable, its a recipe for disaster," warned Mayor Soglin at a press conference Monday morning.

Ted DeDee, the Chief Executive Officer for the Overture, says the center has already raised $2.4 million through private donations to pay its operating expenses for 2013, but for nothing more.

"The city's money also helps to sustain some of these free programs that benefit the entire community," said DeDee, who claims programs like "Kids In The Rotunda" would have to be cut.

District One Alder Lisa Subeck says 14 of the 20 council members support restoring the Overture Center's funding, which would be enough to override any veto from Mayor Soglin.

27 News will have a full report on the City of Madison Board of Estimates meeting tonight on at 10.

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