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Dubuque Chamber of Commerce asks for federal help for local concert venues

Published: Dec. 10, 2020 at 10:22 PM CST
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - The Dubuque Chamber of Commerce is trying to get financial help for their local concert halls, movie theatres and other entertainment venues.

According to the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA), the live event industry has lost up to 90% of its revenue because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The group said 90% of its independent venues across the county will close their doors forever if they don’t receive financial relief.

Cory Jacobson, who owns Phoenix Theaters in Dubuque, said his business is 80% lower compared to last year. He said he’s staying in businesses after making a deal with his landlord.

“We have very kind landlords that are not charging us the rent right now, he said. “Or at least holding off on now at least until we get an answer, that’s the only way you’re going to stay in business.”

Jacobson said he’s hoping the answer comes from another Covid-19 relief package from the federal government because their industry has suffered from closures and attendance limits to keep people safe.

“You know we really have a lot of issues just getting the public to any attractions, despite what I think in our business, we’ve done a good job at social distancing,” he said.

The Dubuque Chamber of Commerce said these events help other businesses make money as well and helps it attract new businesses.

Molly Grover, who is the President and CEO of the chamber said, it also helps the city attract new businesses.

Iowa has it’s own budget surplus of $800 Million Dollars. Some states have dipped into their own coffers instead of waiting on D-C.

Grover said Iowa’s legislature should make the best decision for Iowans rather than say if it should or shouldn’t use those funds.

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