On August 24, the City Council in Elgin, Illinois “unanimously agreed to move along a plan that will forgive more than $161,000 on a loan the Elgin Symphony Orchestra has been paying to Elgin, in order to give the ESO a more favorable balance sheet when competing for grant money,” writes Mike Danahey in Thursday’s (8/25) Elgin Courier-News (Ill.). “The ESO has been making monthly payments of about $1,600 since November 2013, and the current loan balance is more than $183,000. Of that balance, about $21,400 constitutes direct labor costs incurred by the city. Under the proposed renegotiated terms of the loan, the ESO would pay to the city the balance of the direct labor costs…. [Elgin Symphony Orchestra CEO Dave] Bearden said that the debt to the city is the largest item on the ESO’s balance sheet…. Bearden said the ESO’s goal is to have a third of its income from earnings such as tickets, a third from individual donations and a third from corporations and foundations…. The new agreement is set for final approval at the Sept. 13 City Council meeting.” Bearden has been the Elgin Symphony’s executive director since 2012, and Andrew Grams has served as music director since 2013.

Posted August 29, 2017