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Coachella Threatening to Leave Current Location

Christopher Polk, Getty Images

Since its inception in 1999, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival has been held at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, Calif. However, legislation is underway that could threaten the festival’s future at the site after 2013.

LA Weekly is reporting that a new initiative proposed by city councilman Sam Torres will impose a new tax between five and ten percent on admissions fees to events where more than 2,500 people will be in attendance.

With tickets for 2013 already set to increase $34 to $349, festival organizers Goldenvoice do not wish to add an extra $18 to the price. If the measure succeeds, they say they will leave Indio rather than pay the $4 to $6 million out of their company’s pockets. The city recently cut $4 million from its budget.

“[W]e’re going to take off 2014,” said Paul Tollett, president of Goldenvoice told the Desert Sun. “2015 we’ll be at a new facility outside of Indio.”

Goldenvoice has already considered purchasing land outside Indio, including the El Dorado Polo Club in nearby La Quinta, as well as 600 acres of unincorporated land in Riverside County.

In order to get the initiative on the ballot, Torres needs 2,700 signatures from city residents by Aug. 10.

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