Utah Pageant of the Arts officials have settled their dispute with the Alpine School District and will be allowed to move into the show's tradional home at American Fork High School on Saturday to prepare for the June 13 opening.
The pageant must pay Alpine $1,000 beginning Friday and continuing once a week through July, when its delinquent $8,400 debt will be paid off. The bill is for rent owed the district from the 1987 pageant.The deal is predicated on the district receiving a letter by Friday from American Fork City, guaranteeing the money will be paid by the city if the pageant reneges on its agreement.
In November 1987, the pageant was notified that it would not be allowed to move into the high school auditorium to begin preparations for its annual show until the back rent was paid. Pageant officials did not respond to that warning until last week, when they approached an Alpine School Board member.
Pageant director David Brockbank told the school board on Tuesday that the pageant had no funds. He requested organizers be allowed to move in this week while negotiations went on, but board members refused, saying the district had allowed ample time for the money to be paid.
Pageant officials will now have to come up with the $8,400 and work out an agreement with the district on how they will pay 1988's rent for the high school.
Betty Brady, chairwoman of the pageant board of directors, said money for the weekly $1,000 payments will have to come from this year's ticket sales. When asked how organizers plan to pay for 1988, she said she is unsure.
"I don't know how to answer that. Our development committee we hope will make some progress," she said. "We live from production to production, and as soon as our show starts, we're in good stead. Really the only revenue we have is our ticket sales."
Ticket prices have been raised, and that should help with the rent, Brady said. The development committee will aggressively seek donations for additional revenue.
Brockbank told board members that the pageant had ignored Alpine School District's requests for payment of the 1987 rent because officials thought American Fork was negotiating with the district to provide services like snow removal in exchange for a reduction in the rental charge. Superintendent Clark Cox said that was not happening, and city services could not compensate for the entire $8,400 bill.