“A top appropriator in Annapolis filed a bill Thursday that would direct an additional $3.2 million in state money to the cash-strapped Baltimore Symphony Orchestra over the next two years and create a special working group to look for ways to improve the institution’s finances,” writes Kevin Rector in Thursday’s (2/28) Baltimore Sun. “Del. Maggie McIntosh, a Baltimore Democrat and chair of the House appropriations committee, said the new funding would add to, rather than replace, existing local and state dollars for the BSO—including from the Maryland State Arts Council—that totaled $3.3 million this year. But it would likely supplant annual draws on the institution’s endowment, she said—namely as a means of stabilizing that fund, a major goal of the bill … The bill would provide $1.6 million to the BSO in each of the next two years. The working group … would look for ‘structural efficiencies’ related to the BSO’s health care costs and facility usage, and make recommendations on ‘cost containment and audience development’ in a report to legislators due Oct. 1. It would be composed of BSO administrators, directors and players, and would be led by a chair named by top legislators.”

Posted March 4, 2019