Entries Tagged 'Denny Sanford Premier Center' ↓

Sioux Falls City Council financial update reveals some interesting tidbits

I guess I missed the first part of the informational meeting where financial director Mr. Pritchett revealed some interesting things going on. I appreciate Shawn’s honesty.

The first thing he reveals is that Sioux Empire Community Theatre owes SMG or Global, or whatever they are calling themselves these days $74K for past rentals of the Orpheum and that they have an agreement to pay $1,000 a month until it is paid up. What a deal! The Pavilion, which runs the Orpheum now requires the SECT to pay rent for events now with 50% up front.

Then there is the Event Center that actually pulled in less revenue last year, but get this, made a bigger profit (according to Global). I guess when you don’t have to pay anybody (part-timers) to work events (because very few are going on) you make more money. Go figure. I wonder if we mothballed the place we could make even more money!

We also found out why we had to ‘repair’ the HVAC system at the Denty, because it has severely malfunctioned causing leaks in the roof and damage to the ceiling. So now we have the siding and the HVAC system, makes you wonder what other things we cut corners on. A former Denty employee told me once “Don’t lean too hard on the interior walls, you may fall thru.”

Speaking of leaky stuff, the Pavilion is requesting around $6 million to fix the roof and railing on the roof. Where are they getting their bids? Certainly not from Mitchell Roofing 🙂

We also got to hear about the deteriorating Sioux Falls Stadium and what we are going to do with that money pit, but that discussion really didn’t go anywhere – as usual.

Yet we need to charge non-profits who actually bring successful events into Sioux Falls that drive the economy $70 an hour, per officer, for police protection. Go figure. As one of my former co-workers used to say about our boss/owner of the company we worked for, “He’s concerned about pennies as dollars are flying out the window.”

UPDATE: Dave Mathews in Sioux Falls for 3 nights, who knew?

Every year Sanford holds a big party for it’s employees, they usually bring in a well known performer.

UPDATE: Employees had to pay $10 a ticket with a limit of two. It was a fundraiser for Sanford’s Employee Emergency fund. Tickets were available to Sanford employees as well as First Premier, Unity Point and GSS.

This year apparently they brought in Dave Matthews and Grace Potter (which I was told was fantastic). While I am not really a fan anymore (because all his stuff sounds the same) when he first got popular about 20 years ago, I did like some of that early stuff.

But what is disappointing is that Sanford kept this all to themselves. What would have been the harm in selling tickets to a public concert? Could Matthews sell out the Denty? Probably not, but heck, I guarantee he could have sold out the Pavilion.

Once again we see the sword Sanford wields on us. I was at a family event yesterday and one of my second cousins from Yankton asked me, “When is Sioux Falls going to rename itself to Sanford Falls?” It may be sooner then we think.

Is NEW Events Center bag policy about SAFETY or SALES?

A new bag policy goes into affect tonight. While I can’t understand why anyone would want to carry in a bag or purse to a show anyway, I do understand that women like to have makeup and other personal items with them, but I wonder if the policy isn’t about safety (concealed weapons) but about people sneaking in their own beverages and snacks. The last time I paid to go to a show at the EC my ticket was $120 (very good seats) and drinks were about $50. Remember, well over 90% of what you spend at the EC (tickets, food, beverages, etc.) goes straight out of town and doesn’t get circulated in the local economy. I have asked since the place has opened what their yearly sales are and how much of that money stays in Sioux Falls and have yet to get an answer from the city who owns the facility and pays the mortgage and maintenance.

The Denty has very few concerts scheduled over next 5 months

A business operator adjacent to the EC Campus came to one of the public input sessions for EC Campus Book Club and asked why there are so few concerts and events at the Denty this year.

Over the next 5 months there is only 6 concerts scheduled and about a dozen other events.

This building isn’t cheap to operate, with that few of rentals, how can it even break even with sponsorships?

I have also heard that major corners were cut when building the facility. Someone told me that most of the internal walls are only thin sheetrock, in other words if someone pushed you hard enough into the wall, you might go thru. As with the siding, many things will have to be fixed and upgraded here in the near future. This is what happens when you ‘ramrod’ things on the cheap. Thanks Bowlcut!

Events Center Campus Book Club Meets Wednesday

Wednesday, May 22, 8:30 AM

Convention Center, 1201 Northwest Avenue, Mtg. Rooms 8-10

2018 Events Center Finance Report tells us very little

This is quite the spreadsheet for a multi-million dollar business (Full Doc: Denty-2018-Finances)

I have asked since the place has opened what their yearly sales are. If I had to guess, looking at the sales tax paid (3 pennies) it would be around $55 Million. Where does that money go? Straight out of town to artists, promoters and to Ovation’s coffers (they are the concession provider). We get back a whopping $3.7 million in which $2.1 million (the net operating income) goes into a revolving fund the city has in their bank account but that SMG controls.

Am I the only one that has noticed that the economy in Sioux Falls has been staggering ever since the Denty opened? Well, when you send $55 million straight out the door of our community each year, it has an effect and not a good one.

Financial Comparison between Pavilion & DSPC

I found this comparison interesting. I had to use 2017 numbers because the Pavilion usually doesn’t release last year’s financials until June(?).

Just for the record, I’m not trying to dig up dirt, I just found the way the two institutions generate revenue and expenses to be interesting.

One of the most stark differences is expenses.

Click to enlarge graphic

Events Center Revenue down over the past 3 years

Finally the chart I have been waiting for. I found it in the back of a booklet handed out at the EC Campus Book Club meeting today (click on image to enlarge);

In fact, if you look at the numbers closely you will see that the Denty actually would have a $1 Million year loss if it were not for sponsorships. Add the almost $10 Million a year in mortgage payments then you figure out why we are dodging potholes.

I also wonder if the city survey ever asks if people attend events at the Denty, or Pavilion, Orpheum, Arena, MAC, etc.? I would be curious just what percentage of Sioux Falls residents attend events.

Events Center Campus Book Club meetings NOW open to the public

Funny how these things work. Councilor Stehly and Starr put out a press release announcing a press conference today at 1:30 to discuss a resolution opening the meetings to the public and then a mysterious email never shared with the council magically appears; (Copy of proposed ord: Events Campus Meetings RES )

An email from the event center group’s co-chairs Dan Statema and Jeff Eckhoff to Mayor Paul TenHaken said that the group had voted at their first meeting on Feb. 27 to allow the public and media to attend the rest of the meetings.

“We see no harm in having interested parties gain the same education we are as we progress through this process,” the email read.

Do you really think the public is that naïve TJ? Really? The only harm would be leaving the meetings closed, which is still on the table;

The email said the group would like to retain the ability to meet privately if “nonpublic” information ever needed to be shared, but said he did not expect the need to arise.

When it comes to a grouping of public buildings there is no such thing as ‘nonpublic’ information. Bucktooth & Bowlcut tried that approach with the Denty’s siding debacle, it blew up in his face. The only information that can be withheld from the public in closed door executive session has to do with pending litigation and personnel. Since this volunteer group wouldn’t have access to that kind of information anyway that means ALL of the meetings need to remain open. I think this is just a sneaky way of heading off Starr and Stehly to convince them there is NO NEED to pass the resolution, but I still think they need to so they have some insurance in case they try some back door deals. A statement in a supposed email about a supposed vote in a closed door meeting doesn’t cut the mustard.

“Our stance all along was ‘we’re not going to force you guys to meet in public if you don’t want that,'” Nelson said.

“They’re not in a decision-making role,” Nelson said in January. “We want to make sure we have the most open and candid conversation possible.”

Hey, TypeOver, when it comes to OPEN, NON-PARTISAN government, that isn’t up to you or volunteers on a task force committee. The meetings MUST be open to protect the public’s best interest and to have the best OPEN and HONEST conversations, there never should have been a ‘choice’ in the matter.

I would advise councilors Starr and Stehly to push ahead with their resolution to ensure the meetings stay open. I think the administration, especially Deputy COS, TJ TypeOver looks especially foolish for proposing closed meetings to begin with. If someone on the task force was uncomfortable with open public meetings, you pick someone else, it’s really that simple. So now we have to go thru a bunch of steps about supposed votes and emails, resolutions by councilors and excuses from Mayor TenHaken’s staff when we could have just done the right thing to begin with. See folks, this is what happens when you try to keep secrets from the public.

 

Events Center Campus ‘Book Club’ to have 1st meeting this week

First item on the agenda will be a ‘behind the scenes’ tour of the campus. I wonder if they will be shown all the water damage in the walls of the Denty or the moldy hamburger buns at Canaries stadium?

Funny how we get to KNOW that they are meeting but can’t come along for the ride.