The New Stimulus Package Agreed Upon By The U.S. Congress Gives Hope To The Historic Tivoli Theatre.
Photo Courtesy of tivolichattanooga.com
Chattanooga, TN – The $900 billion stimulus package recently agreed upon by Congress is expected to include $15 billion worth of aid for live event venues.
The arts and entertainment industry has been hit hard by the pandemic lockdown restrictions with a decline of 69.8% since the beginning.
Tivoli Theatre has been a victim of industry decline, and the City of Chattanooga has been withholding the COVID-19 financial aid it needs.
In a City Council meeting, members decided to allocate funds to city employee bonuses while deferring the decision to fund other entities to January.
Nick Wilkinson, Executive Director of Tivoli Theatre, explains the hardship of not being able to envision success for your business.
“You know, the two best words in our industry is sold out and so when that’s not even a reality, it’s very challenging,” said Wilkinson.
“The longer this goes on and the inability to generate revenue, the more dire this situation becomes.”
Tivoli Theatre has had to cut pay and furlough employees, but the stimulus bill may be able to bring some temporary assistance.
With the $15 billion earmarked in the legislation specifically for entertainment venues, there’s hope that this industry will not go away forever.
Chattanooga is a city that bases its economy on hospitality and tourism, so the pandemic really threatened the local business environment.
Many restaurants have managed to survive for now, but theatres have been shut down all together with zero patrons.
“This is an industry not unlike the hospitality industry, not unlike the restaurant industry, that has been really severely impacted by this pandemic and this is a good step in the right direction of giving us some hope that we can survive through this period,” said Wilkinson.