On Tuesday, May 26th, the Seattle City Council voted 5 to 3 to repeal the admissions tax on small music venues that employ live musicians. Signed into law by Mayor Greg Nickels in June, the legislation will encourage the employment of live musicians and the opening of more live music venues, driving economic development in neighborhoods across the city.
The repeal was originally proposed as part of a long-range economic development package for the music industry, and the Mayor’s Office of Film and Music projects that it will contribute to the opening of eight new music venues in the next several years. The sales and businesses taxes from these venues and the projected increase in the health of the music industry will likely significantly exceed the foregone revenue from repealing the tax.
The exemption is only one aspect of a renewed focus on the music industry for the Mayor, whose City of Music initiative promotes Seattle as a hub for musicians and live music. A 2008 economic impact study on music in Seattle showed that the music industry creates 11,155 jobs and $1.2 billion in sales for the city.
Read the Mayor’s full press release on the tax exemption here.