Friday, December 12, 2014

County Web Site Details Massive 'Welfare for the Wealthy' Giveaway to Signature Theater

Hello,

In the event you haven't seen it by now, Arlington residents and taxpayers should visit Arlington County's Web site, arlingtonva.us and read the terms of the County's outrageous 'Welfare for the Wealthy" proposed giveaway to the Signature Theater.

Why outrageous? Because the Signature's Honorary Trustees, Directors, Directors Emeritus, and Signature Council are all wealthy people. At least a dozen are incredibly wealthy and have extensive backgrounds in management, finance, commercial real estate, entertainment management, public relations, and management consulting.

But don't believe A.Y. Visit the Signature's Web site:  www.signature-theatre.org/board-of-directors and see for yourselves.

Any ONE of the dozen incredibly wealthy people on the Signature's Board can write a check to pay off all the Signature's indebtedness. That includes County Board Chair Jay Fisette's (aka Giveaway Jay) spouse, Robert Rosen. Oh, BTW, Rosen is also owner and CEO of a successful management consulting firm named "Healthy Companies International". That leaves the rest to cough up the cash to keep the Signature's budgets in the black.

The County Board already bailed out the Signature twice, once by paying the Signature's utility bills for several years and again by paying the Signature's back taxes.

It's obvious what the Signature was, and is, and always will be...a taxpayer-subsidized party zone for the Inside-the Beltway Elite.

Signature doesn't need or deserve a dime of tax dollars, and never has.

100 Comments:

At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Welfare for the Wealthy ? More like Welfare for the Super Rich !

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

$tephen $ondheim is worth at least $1 Billion. So ask him for a $5 million gift in return for re-naming the theater the "$tephen $ondheim $ignature Theatre".

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank You, Jay Fisette !! This welfare for the wealthy arts crowd has been going since Jay was first elected. There are now what, twelve live theater groups? Think the other 11 will demand similar taxpayer-funded subsidies?

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sarasota Scott McCaffrey is also loaded with dough. So how about a big gift from him in returning for renaming the Signature to be the "$ara$ota $cott $ignature Theater"?

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What to do with the Signature? Let the Richey Riches who run the Signature find another bunch of sheeple to rip off somewhere else around the Beltway. Move all the activities in the Artisphere to the space the Signature presently occupies.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous fairgil said...

We waited something like 8 years for a library while the (mostly closeted) LGBT Gimme Gang that runs the Signature shopped around the Beltway for a better deal.

Signature is little more than a LGBT party zone that operates about 6 months every year. Any value to the community comes from the supermarket, restaurants, and retail that operate throughout the year.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Everybody...this agenda item will be heard by the County Board at approximately 11 PM on December 17th, after 'public land for public good' and the items pulled from the CB's consent agenda.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the Signature is so great why do they have to be repeatedly bailed out?

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Signature is of, by, and for closeted LGBTs which is why it has limited appear for anyone else.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Staff Report for the giveaways is now on-line on the arlingtonva.us Web site.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reading the Staff report....

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Guess who we will have to bail out next?

The other performing arts groups that have been struggling for years.

The Bikeshare corporations who are also struggling because no one wants to ride bicycles in the winter...duh.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fairfax County residents Barbara Donnellan and Steve McIssac signed the loan agreement on behalf of Arlington taxpayes.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

One of the Signature's Directors did pledge $1 million to bail the Signature out. What about the others?

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Royal Nonsuch Theater said...

Waaaaa....Waaaa...Our theater group wants the same deal the Signature got.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Signature also gets to use the old theater on Four Mile Run for free.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Signature is small change to the County, the real moneymaker from sales tax is the Harris Teeter supermarket.

Signature has productions and events about 30 weeks per year.

Yes, Signature is a club for the LGBTs who have huge amounts of disposable income. Middle class can't afford the Signature or Shirlington Village.

There's no affordable housing in Shirlington and hundreds of people who work there make $8-$10 per hour.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let the Signature move away. Move the Artisphere to the Signature's present building. Win-Win.

 
At 12 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The people behind the Signature Theater are despicable. They spent extravagantly for years and have repeatedly told the County that if the County didn't bail them out they would move elsewhere.

 
At 13 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Signature is a party with interruptions for productions. Look at the expensive amateur theatrics that get produced between the plays.

 
At 13 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let the Signature go bankrupt and allow other live theater groups to audition for use of the space.

 
At 14 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Jay Fisette and his wealthy friends want to bail the Signature out, let them spend their own money.

 
At 14 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where are the restaurants and retail which are supposed to be making so much from the Signature's presence in Shirlington Village? Where is Shirlington Village's owner, Federal Realty Investment Trust? FRIT will pay out $300 million to stockholders in 2014.

 
At 14 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Virginia were a state where voters could vote out corrupt pols via recall elections this outrageous rip off would be cause for a recall election.

 
At 14 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

According to the Staff Report, County has re-negotiated the Signature's lease twice.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

At least three of the comments posted here about the Theatre are addressing the sexuality of staff. I have to say, it borders on homophobia or bullying -- "the LGBT Gimmee Gang", "LGBT party zone"; "A theater by and for closeted LGBTs"; "a club for LGBTs…"

Wow. This blog and those posters should be ashamed. Keep the discussion to something remotely relevant if you want to be taken seriously.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My son, who attends NVCC, has a part-time job in a retail store in Shirlington. Pay is $9 per hour. Many adults work in Shirlington full-time for $10 per hour. Shirlington business owners are having a very good year. How much are they contributing to the Signature. Why is it all about the Signature's wants? My tax bill will go up another $300 this year to pay for the wants of the wealthy and County Government's crazy schemes like million dollar bus shelters and dog parks.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Having been employed by the Signature I can state that, in fact, Signature is of, by, and for wealthy LGBTs. Like Jay Fisette and Bob Rosen. Who is pushing this bailout and all the gimmes Signature has received over the years? Chairman Fisette.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jay Fisette also repeatedly voted against affordable housing -- in Potomac Yards, Shirlington, along the B-R Corridor and elsewhere in the County.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why characterize people who post here as homophobic who are only stating the truth about Signature?

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jay and Bob could easliy write a check for $5 million to retire the Signature's debt.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Adults who work for Shirlington's wealthy restaurant owners stop for food assistance at AFAC on their way home from work.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll go you one better...Arlington's LGBTs are selfish, wealthy, elitist xenophobes who, like Jay Fisette, want to micro manage everyone else's life while keeping their own activities secret.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes. Jay is all for imposing "Smart Growth" on everyone else. He's opted his own luxury enclave, Ashton Heights, out of anything resembling "Smart Growth".

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Signature stages one or two well-produced, well-acted plays every year, but is mostly a hang out for a LGBT arts crowd that produces amateur antics for themselves.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you attend Wednesday evening's County Board meeting expect to be there after midnight.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Welfare for the Wealthy? Go to the Federal Real Estate Investment Trust web site.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Keeping their own activities secret"? You mean like Jay continually inviting the County's LGBT leadership to Jay and Rob's Ashton Heights estate to plan LGBT strategy sessions?

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

So Arlene and Robert Kogold gave the Signature $1 million. What's preventing the rest of the Signature's BOD from contributing major amounts?

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why should they when Jay repeatedly does his reverse Robin Hood -- from the Sheeple to the $ignature?

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Put the blame where it belongs - Jay Fisette. Signature Theater is another of his pet special interests, upscale dog parks and swim centers are two others.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tejada does the same with soccer, Hynes does the same with bars and entertainment in the B-R corridor.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes. The County Board Majority's cronies at Capital Bikeshare will be the next to receive a taxpayer bailout.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about the Signature coming out of the closet and admitting it is what it is ... a LBGT club.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Homophobic? There was a controversy about LGBT and other adult activities occurring in the Signature / Library building when the theater and library were planned 15 years ago and so it was decided there should be separate entrances for the theater and library.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yep. Next taxpayer bailout will be for another of Jay's pet special interests, Capital Bikeshare.

 
At 15 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Time for Giveaway Jay to follow Abby Raphael into retirement.

 
At 16 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, many restaurant and retail workers in Shirlington are receiving food assistance. I don't know about the Signature's employees.

 
At 16 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Total cost of the Signature's bail out package is at least $10 million, if you count the interest the Signature won't have to pay, value of the free lease on the South Four Mile Run building, and so on.

 
At 16 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is it even legal for a county government to give gifts to anyone, a person, group, corporation, or non-profit?

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The 5-0 vote for the Signature bailout is a bad omen for taxpayers. County Board sent for-profits and non-profits the message that any irresponsible behavior will be both tolerated and rewarded.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agree.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Arlington Food Assistance Center is reporting the number of Arlington residents seeking food assistance reached an all-time record last month. How many work for the Signature?

Hopefully, the taxpayer bailout of the Signature means an increase in wages will trickle down to Signature's lowest-paid employees.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Jeff said...

Jay Fi$ette is a piece of $#!+ . What a f^cking charade occurred last night.

I am completely disappointed in John Vihstadt voting to bail out the $ignature after stating a few hours before that he is for fiscal reform.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, Signature bail out is a VERY BAD omen for Arlington taxpayers.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Next bailout of one of Chairman Jay's pet special interests will be Capital Bikeshare.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lots of vocal opposition on this board and elsewhere but only 3 people turned out at the hearing last night to speak against the proposal. Why is that? Did the actual facts, once learned, negate everyone's argument against, or are we as a community simply more prone to complaining (anonymously at that) and not actually taking any accountability or responsibility to get engaged?

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Post Reporter, Patricia Sullivan, covered this and certainly knew how much the County gave away to the Signature, but as usual the Post failed to convey any sense of the total irresponsibility of this welfare for the wealthy deal.

For example, it appears the County will pay all the Signature's utility bills. Signature is only required to keep the interior air ducts free of dust.

Signature will retain $$$ from naming rights to the theater, worth perhaps $5 million, and Stephen Sondheim has $5 million to contribute to put his name on the theater.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Arlington County is a big give-away to any number of upscale special interests.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was completely disgusted after heating Jim Hurysz's analysis of this taxpayer rip-off to benefit the Signature Theater Club.

We will pay how much more in residential real estate taxes over the next several years to subsidize the upscale non-profits?

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Civic engagement about important issues? What's that?

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, Federal Realty, which owns most of Shirlington Village couldn't toss a million or two Signature's way to keep Signature alive and well? C'mon folks, we're being scammed major league by County Government.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Look at the Civic Federation. Average age of the 'delegates' is about 65.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Post is still reeling from the biketards showing up at the Post's HQ complaining that the Post mischaracterized their behavior.

 
At 18 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Barbara Donnellan and Steve McIssac who negotiated the $ignature $teal live in Fairfax County.

 
At 19 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did someone mention the 2024 Olympics? Next outrageously extravagant mega-project for the chamber of commerce boosters.

 
At 19 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes. Why didn't the $ignature ask $tephen $ondheim for $5 million in return for naming rights?

I am completely disgusted with County Government. Never will I vote for an incumbent again.

 
At 19 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Barbara Donnellan, who facilitates all these vanity deals lives in Clifton, takes home a big paycheck, great benefits, good pension, pays no taxes in Arlington, and has stated to her subordinates who are also non-residents that there is no way she would ever live in Arlington.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why didn't the Post report about the party till ya puke rich pigs who control the Signature? Because Post Style Section reporters get "comped" by the Signature.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Post reporting is a fraud, charade, scam...etc.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Signature is a joke...want to see a real performing arts theater? Visit the Signature Theater in New York.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Triad of Irresponsibility -- Greedy Special Interests, County Government, Media.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Post can't report anything negative about any special interest because that would endanger the ongoing friendships among Post reporters and the special interests.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This blog should demand that Barbara Donnellan retires and Michelle Cowan finds employment elsewhere.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was disappointed that John Vihstadt didn't vote against this.

I am also concerned that there is very little philanthropy by the super rich people who benefit the most from the Signature and Artisphere.

What will be their next major crusade - the 2024 Olympics? Meaning spending $5 billion over 8 years for sports infrastructure.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

At least 100 low-wage employees who work in Shirlington Village receive food assistance from AFAC.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where was VOICE on Wednesday?

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does this mean anyone at 2100 Clarendon Blvd. who had anything to do with putting this deal together gets lifetime tickets for major Signature performances?

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Signature is dinner theater without dining.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also won't vote for any incumbent again. If there was ever an example of the taxpayers being ignored this was it.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wanted to attend and speak against the Signature rip off but I thought that the Arlington County Taxpayers Association would be there in force.

Is ACTA of, by, and for one person, Mr. Wise? If so, ACTA should let us know.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I heard that Time Wise won't allow anyone to join ACTA, he wants to be a one man band.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the Signature's Public Assistance Pimps who wondered why only 3 people spoke against your welfare-for-the-wealthy package, the Arlington GOP was AWOL as usual. (You would think a few of the Young Repubs would have stuck around after John Vihstadt's swearing in).

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is ZERO 'noblesse oblige' in this County. Everyone is out to get as much as they can, anyway they can.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree. The Elite who run Arlington are pigs.

 
At 20 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

So who do you think are going to pay for the 2024 Olympics?

 
At 21 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why don't the likes of Mark Kelly attend County Board meetings? If the Repubs were there in force Wednesday night the County Board would have told the Signature to go hold a bake sale.

 
At 21 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Arlington is being run and ruined by various gimme groups. I am so sick of these vultures.

 
At 21 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vultures? Exactly.

 
At 21 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does anyone know how much paying for all the Signature's utilities will cost Arlington taxpayers?

 
At 21 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

At least $1 million over the next 5 years.

 
At 22 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

No more bailouts of the Signature? Not true. Next bailout will be the County giving the Garage building to the Signature, which the Signature will sell when the Nauck side of Shirlington is redeveloped.

 
At 22 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the Arlington Republican Party weren't full of Tea Party bulloney there would have been a massive Republican presence at the last County Board meeting and the Signature would have had to ask its wealthy board members to bail itself out.

 
At 22 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What does the County Board do in its offices? Work on one welfare for wealthy for-profits and non-profits deal after another?

 
At 22 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fire Donnellan. Tell Fisette it's time he resigned.

 
At 22 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

County Board majority's Democratic Party cronies at Capital Bikeshare will be the next to be bailed out.

 
At 22 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

How do we get modern Recall Election legislation through the General Assembly?

 
At 22 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

How much will the "Garage" be worth to a developer...$5 million...$10 million?

 
At 22 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does the Arlington Republican Party really expect to elect anyone to the County Board and School Board in 2015?

 
At 22 December, 2014 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Recall Petition in Virginia is completely dysfunctional.

 

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