How will Orlando PAC close the funding gap?

Posted on: January 20, 2010

In Tuesday’s (1/19) Orlando Sentinel, Mark Schlueb and David Damron report, “Orlando officials and arts boosters plan to break ground this spring on the first phase of the Dr. P. Phillips Orlando Performing Arts Center—but they don’t yet have the money to pay for it or a firm plan on how to get it. … That $250-million first phase will be paid from a mix of sources, including private contributions. But most will come from bonds that will be paid back over time by a downtown district called the Community Redevelopment Agency, which is funded by property taxes collected on new construction in downtown Orlando.” But $130 million in CRA-backed bonds, $65 million in raised funds, $15 million in state funding, and $9.6 in hotel taxes add up to roughly $220 million. “That leaves a tough question: Where will [Mayor Buddy] Dyer get the other $30 million? … One option may involve again tapping the CRA. Last year, Dyer talked about issuing additional bonds that would be backed initially by the CRA and eventually repaid with hotel taxes once tourism rebounds. … One current projection found there might not be a dime of hotel-tax money available for the venues for another 11 years.”

Posted January 20, 2010