And equating symphonies to pro sports is disingenuous. Every single city with a pro team save Oakland and Tampa is throwing millions of dollars in tax breaks in the hopes of keeping that billion-dollar business in town. Realistically, most pro sports franchises are worth close to that now. Even Detroit, a city on the verge of bankruptcy, spends tens of millions annually to keep a franchise in place in each of the Big Four sports.
Taxpayers wonít pay for the arts. We know that. But the symphony board completely abrogated their responsibility to make sure the group remained economically viable. If they got $1 for every $50 earned in profit - not revenue, profit - by the Spurs they would be fine. They didnít make enough of an effort.
San Antonio is not economically depressed. There are at least five Fortune 500 companies there. To name three, HEB, AT&T, and USAA each chipping in even a little would likely have been enough.