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City loans California Musical Theatre $300,000

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The struggling California Musical Theatre in Sacramento will receive $300,000 from the city to help it stay afloat.

The Sacramento City Council unanimously decided Wednesday to loan the amount to the theater over the next three years. The theater can withdraw the money in $50,000 increments each quarter until the $300,000 total is reached, according to a report by city staff. The money will go toward the theater’s operations.

California Musical Theatre runs Music Circus, the Broadway Series and Cosmopolitan Cabaret.

“It’s an important piece of downtown,” Councilman Jay Schenirer said, referring to the theater. The business the theater brings to downtown is “incredibly important,” he added.

The city is taking $300,000 from its Community Center Theater Renovation Project for the loan.

Councilwomen Sandy Sheedy and Angelique Ashby noted that the money for the loan is designated for the arts and cannot be used in the city’s general fund.

When the theater withdraws money from the loan during a fiscal year, it must pay back the city the amount plus interest by June 30 of that fiscal year, according to the city staff report.

The theater cannot receive a bank line of credit because of its financial situation, the staff report said.

Still, the theater provides benefits to the city, according to the report. The theater employs more than 550 people, and pays $800,000 to the Sacramento Convention Center in rent annually, the report said.

Kathleen Haley is a staff reporter for The Sacramento Press. 

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