CEO of the Overture Center for the Arts Tom Carto listened to members of the city’s Cultural Arts Board.[/media-credit]

With the final vote on a new financial model for Madison’s Overture Center for the Arts approaching, the possible consequences of not passing a new model are now becoming increasingly pressing to both city officials and Overture operators.

According to members of the Madison Cultural Arts District Board of Directors, the vote on the new Overture Meeting is set to come before the City Council at their Nov. 9. meeting.

Under the proposed model, the city would purchase Overture for one dollar and pay for its operating costs while a non-profit organization would run Overture’s business aspects.
The Nov. 9 City Council meeting is the same meeting a proposed ordinance from Ald. Bridget Maniaci, District 2, regulating property owners in Madison would come up for final approval from the council.

Because both proposals are time-consuming and controversial, Ald. Mike Verveer, District 4, said it is possible one of the votes on either the showing ordinance or Overture’s new model will face postponement.

“We do not need to [vote on Overture] on Nov. 9 under the agreement with the banks; that’s just the logical date that we would like to accomplish that,” Verveer said. “In a perfect world, we would certainly like to, and we’re trying to get this done by Nov. 9, but it might fall by the wayside.”

Verveer added he believes hosting both ordinances on the same evening would be unwise, and it is more likely the showing ordinance will be postponed than the Overture focus model.

Board member Dierdre Garton said many members of City Council
believe they have some breathing room on when the vote could take place.

“Some alders think the date is not in concrete,” Garton said. “[We
have] a letter from the banks saying the December date is immutable and
they’re not going to change it… so moving [the vote to] December is difficult – it’s
very very difficult.”

Garton said she has been speaking with all council members and giving them information about the current financial situation, how the model would work and what the Overture Ad Hoc Committee’s recent recommendations would mean if adopted.