Wheaton Grand Theatre Public Funding Advisory Question (April 2011)
This measure was defeated
- YES 3,576 (44.13%)
- NO 4,528 (55.87%)
This was an advisory question, city officials just wanted to gauge public support for the idea of spending public funds to operate and restore the Wheaton Grand Theatre. Some city council members noted that this was not a fair question, the measure assumed the city had a plan for the building but that was not the case, the city did not even own the building and would have still needed private support to be able to do the things suggested in the measure. Others noted that it was just advisory, nothing was promised in it and it just was looking for what residents felt about the issue. Donations were expected to help with funding, along with tax increment financing money, in order to get to the $3 million goal to run the theater. This tax money had also helped other downtown business developments.
Supporters of the theater noted that they were trying to garner support for the measure in order to help with downtown development plans with the theater included. More taxes would not be assessed, money that was already collected would instead be allocated to the refurbishing of the theater. The goal would be to encourage more businesses downtown. It was also noted that without this referendum, regardless of it is advisory, the Theater would have no future.
Opponents of the measure noted that there was no plan, no owner of the theater and no one currently promising to invest in the theater so there was no point to the referendum question. Also, some noted that there were still serious questions about if this project was even viable which had not been addressed by those promoting this.
Text of Measure
The question on the ballot:
This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
|Shall the City of Wheaton use public funds not to exceed One Hundred Fifty Thousand Dollars ($150,000.00) per year for the restoration and operation of the Wheaton Grand Theatre?|
- DuPage County Elections, April Proposition Election Results
- Wheaton Patch, "City to Include Advisory Referendum for Wheaton Grand Theatre on Ballot in Upcoming Election," January 4, 2011
- The Daily Herald, "Voters may hold key to Wheaton Grand’s future," March 27, 2011
- Wheaton Patch, "1925 Theater Looks for a Second Act in 2011," March 7, 2011
- Naperville Sun, "Wheaton Grand Theatre supporters work to get word out on referendum," March 9, 2011
- DuPage County Elections, April Proposal List
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