“Donors set to take over operations of the San Antonio Symphony have backed out of the deal after discovering a potential $8.9 million pension liability, leaving the future of the orchestra in doubt,” write Dawn Kopecki and Jim Kiest in Thursday’s (12/28) San Antonio Express-News. “ ‘We thought we had gotten to the finish line. Then they said there might be an unfunded portion of their pension plan,’ said Bruce Bugg Jr., chairman of Symphonic Music for San Antonio, a nonprofit set up by major donors to take over the symphony’s operations…. The board that’s now running the symphony will meet Tuesday to discuss the impact on the current season and future of the orchestra, Chairwoman Alice Viroslav said.… The American Federation of Musicians & Employers’ Pension Fund sent the organizations a letter Nov. 21 that showed the orchestra’s pension plan was underfunded by the Symphony Society by about $4.5 million.… Withdrawing from the fund early, however, would trigger a ‘withdrawal liability’ of more than $8.9 million.… The musicians’ current contract expires Sunday, and the orchestra’s labor union filed charges Dec. 18 against the old and new boards with the National Labor Relations Board for failing to negotiate in good faith.… The San Antonio Symphony’s next concert is scheduled for Jan. 6.”

Posted January 2, 2018