Music Hall

  

www.saveouricons.org

Update: Supporters of the so-called "icon tax" are worried about signs Hamilton County Commissioners may remove Music Hall from the proposed sales tax. Such a move, they say, would result in the loss of millions in promised philanthropic gifts. Commissioner Monzel has already voiced his support for such a plan and Commissioner Hartmann wants to see a bigger commitment from the City of Cincinnati, which council members haven't so far done.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Update 7/29/14 9 a.m.: Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley's staff is confirming reports he would have the city make annual payments toward the upkeep of Union Terminal for the next 25 years.  Cranley says he will propose that the city continue to make $200,000 annual payments toward Union Terminal’s maintenance. The city is currently paying that amount, but there is no legal obligation to continue it.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

More than a thousand people, most of them in favor of putting a sales tax increase on the ballot, turned out at the first of two public hearings on the issue. The money would be used to renovate the crumbling Union Terminal and pay for upgrades at Music Hall. 

There was passion on both sides of the issue during the three hour meeting at the Sharonville Convention Center. Most agreed the icons should be preserved, but who would and how to pay for it was in question.

www.saveouricons.org

If the group "Save our Icons" has its way, Hamilton County residents will be able to cast a ballot in November on a proposed 9-year 0.25% sales tax to pay for renovation of Music Hall and Union Terminal. It would  raise the county sales tax to 7%.

The Cultural Facilities Task Force recommended the tax to fund the renovations estimated to be $331 million. Private money is also being raised. Hamilton County Commissioners have until August 6 to put the issue before voters.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

The National Trust for Historic Preservation is expanding on why it took the unprecedented step of naming two buildings from the same city to its annual list of Top 11 Most Endangered Historic Places.

Vice President John Hildreth says the decision to name Music Hall and Union Terminal to the list was a "no-brainer."

www.saveouricons.org

*Update: 6/24/2014  Though not in writing, WVXU is told the Zoo has called Commission offices to rescind the request reported below.

*Correction: Note the corrected time for the first public hearing.

Hamilton County Commission chambers overflowed with supporters waving yellow signs Monday as the Cultural Facilities Task Force made its recommendations for fixing up Music Hall and Union Terminal.

  A Spanish beauty spurns her lover; enemy soldiers celebrate Christmas Eve together on the Western Front during WW; a god tries to woo a young maiden; and a geisha falls in love with an American naval officer. It'’s the current season of the Cincinnati Opera, starting off with Carmen. Evans Mirageas, the Harry T. Wilks Artistic Director of the Cincinnati Opera, joins us to share highlights of this season'’s offerings.

Sarah Ramsey

Two public hearings have been set to discuss the possibility of a sales tax to fix up Union Terminal and Music Hall. But Hamilton County Commissioners say that doesn't mean a sales or property tax is a certainty.

A task force is reviewing funding options for repairing the aging landmarks. That group will present its recommendations June 23.

However, Commissioner Greg Hartmann says Wednesday was the last commission meeting before a state deadline to set public hearings ahead of the November election.  

Provided / Commissioner Greg Hartmann's office.

Cincinnati's Union Terminal is in need of major repairs but Hamilton County Commissioner Greg Hartmann says the Museum Center is going to have to find a way to lower the price tag.

Hartmann says the current $180 million estimate is too high.

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