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Former City of Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz

Former Mayor Dave Cieslewicz's Blog


Better Than Expected

September 21, 2010 12:35 PM

The Overture Ad Hoc Committee continues to do a thorough job of vetting the business plan for the Overture Center. If the city is going to assume ownership of the building and the ongoing maintenance costs that go with it, then we need to have a good idea of what those costs will be.

An analysis provided by a committee of experts led by the city's Fiscal Efficiency Auditor Andrew Statz has concluded that the city's share of those costs should be around $9 million over 15 years. Annual debt service on those costs should run around $500,000 a year starting sometime after 2011. This won't affect next year's very tight budget.

The detailed analysis shows costs that are actually a good deal lower than the original back-of-the-envelope projections we had earlier this year. We had thought that the numbers might be about 50% higher. The numbers are also smaller than what we were looking at the last time the Civic Center was in the capital budget - $16 million over only three years.

Next the Ad Hoc Committee will take up a staffing study. My thanks goes to the nine committee members and staff who are working quickly and diligently to make sure that the offer from donors and the banks to clear the Overture debt if the city takes ownership of the building is vetted as thoroughly as possible. I can't thank this group led by Mark Bugher enough for their strong work to date.

You can read Andrew Statz's analysis for yourself here: http://legistar.cityofmadison.com/attachments/0a7cbec0-f0d3-4beb-89b0-808fe0e66d25.pdf.



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