Chicago promoter's ordinance tabled for now

Thanks to a ramshackle coalition of the Chicago Music Commission, live performance venue owners, and grass roots cultural supporters – largely organized online – the Chicago promoter’s ordinance was tabled, for now. The ordinance will likely be brought up for a vote next month, but this time it will be the result of input from the local music industry. Supposedly. Statements on the issue and a follow-up interview with Alderman Brendan Reilly on the TOC blog.

Right before the ordinance was tabled, I posted an overview of some of the less-reported details about the ordinance, particularly how it would affect film exhibitors, comedy shows and storefront theaters. It’s still worth looking at today as the city’s been making every effort to cloud the effects of this issue.

The theory I alluded to yesterday about why this ordinance was seemingly pushed through so quickly got a little more ammunition yesterday, when it was revealed in a statement from Alderman Schulter’s office that explicitly said the ordinance was introduced at the behest of the mayor. Sure, you could say this is a money grab by the city, but it’s really about making the city “safe” for the Olympics. But does “safe” mean cracking down on crime or sanitizing the cultural offerings in the city?

I’ll have more later today on the TOC blog on the lessons learned from this ordinance fight, particularly how it relates to this week’s TOC cover story on Chicago protests – past and present. (We couldn’t have planned that if we wanted to, but oh the serendipity!)

1 comment for “Chicago promoter's ordinance tabled for now

  1. May 14, 2008 at 2:29 pm

    A few things about this debacle are interesting:1. For such a wide-ranging ordinance, Schulter, a normally well-informed Alderman and chair of the License Committee, has come off as poorly informed.2. There has been no clear champion of this legislation in the City Council – even Schulter seemed unenthused.3. The fees are incredibly onerous for a small business.4. Nobody in the City Council or city government anticipated the outcry from the music community. A strange thing since the gang from Jam Productions and the Metro are so politically connected.I’m with < HREF="" REL="nofollow">Ben Joravsky<>, this will sink under the radar for a while only to pop up later under a different form. I’m hoping the Chicago Music Community hires a lobbyist to push this issue in the city. Having watched both fois gras and the smoking ban from the inside, I can say that without a lobbyist, they’ll be in trouble.

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