April 15, 2024
FESTIVAL am Steinertor 2023

Around 8,000 visitors enjoyed the best entertainment during the concerts of Pizzera & Jaus, Sportfreunde Stiller and the Thomas Stipsits cabaret on the Pentecost weekend. The “Festival am Steinertor”, held for the third time on Südtirolerplatz, was an enrichment of the cultural offer of Krems. In economic terms, organizer Othmar Seidl also reckoned with a slight lead for the first time after two revenueless editions. But now nothing will come of it.

Seidl has received mail from the city these days. For the “Festival am Steinertor” almost 34,000 euros of entertainment taxes are owed. “This is an absolute joke. We are moving in an absolutely incomprehensible dimension,” says Seidl. With his much lauded event, he now walks away with less than 13,000 euros. The nationally and internationally active real estate developer from Stratzing does not want to pay for the moment. He asks for a meeting with the city officials and threatens: “Under these conditions, I won’t do it again in Krems.” Alternative locations are possible in Kamptal, Wachau or St. Pölten.

15 percent of ticket prices go to the city

The city entertainment tax is based on the ticket price and varies according to the type of event. For the “Festival am Steinertor”, for example, 15 percent of the full price is payable for each ticket. The series of concerts and cabaret falls into the category “Light music and other musical performances”. Incidentally, the city only collects five percent of the ticket price for events with “serious music” – as the ordinance, which was last amended in 2011, calls it.

FESTIVAL am Steinertor 2023

Around 8,000 visitors came to the “Festival am Steinertor” in Krems on the Pentecost weekend. After the amusement tax deduction, it remains a bad deal.

Photo:
Ideenladen studio


In Krems, the amusement tax is relatively high. St. Pölten deducts 5% for concerts, while Wiener Neustadt only deducts 1.5% for events with over 2,000 visitors. Many smaller municipalities, but also the city of Klosterneuburg, have abolished the entertainment tax in recent years due to the high administrative burden and marginal positive budgetary effects.

Goldfuss: “Like legislation to cash in”

Seidl has garnered full sympathy for his anger over the Krems amusement tax from other industry representatives, who have called for its abolition in an open letter to all factions represented in the municipal council. Erwin Goldfuss, the organizer of the Wachau Folk Festival, writes: “If the amusement tax had finally been abolished in Krems, we would not have had to raise the ticket prices for the Wachau Folk Festival 2023, even if we are faced with huge increases of costs.” the decisive step “folk festivals” which takes place from 24 August to 3 September in the Stadtpark only applies to the Wachau folk festival and acts “as a kind of occasional legislation to cash in”.

The managing director of LW Media Werbe und Verlags GmbH is also interested in the “Wein & Genuss” fair in the Dominican church, which takes place every year as part of the Wachau Gourmet Festival. Here the amusement tax will apply “to a lesser, but no less annoying extent”. Furthermore, there would be high costs for the location, which is why Goldfuss is now questioning the fair. “In Linz we are organizing a wine fair that is almost four times the size, with a zero percent ride tax.”

Club operators see a competitive disadvantage

Seidl’s son-in-law Benjamin Aigner-Seidl and Lukas Aigner, the operators of the event days in the business park, agree. They see Krems’ amusement tax as “a significant disadvantage compared to other club operators in Lower Austria who are exempt from it due to their location”. , “it is not possible to increase national and international artists to perform with us in Krems”.

Young night restaurateurs are annoyed by a statement by city councilor Helmut Meyer (SPÖ), who said in early June that there have been “no signs of dissatisfaction or need for discussion” in the years since the reassessment of the tax in 2011 : “In the past two years, we have been allowed to speak to Mayor Reinhard Resch twice about this cause and express our dissatisfaction. There were and still are signs of dissatisfaction in the entertainment industry.”

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The city also registers the Kremser Sportclub thanks to the entertainment tax.

Photo:
NÖN, Bert Bauer


They also pay film operators and sports clubs

Peter Hauswirth, manager of the Cinemaplexx Krems, also doesn’t leave a single hair on the amusement tax. “In the late ’90s, virtually all cinemas had to pay off parties. This has not been the case for a long time and that is why we in Krems have a clear disadvantage compared to the cinemas in Tulln or Horn, which do not pay any tax”. Investments. Film screenings in Krems are subject to an entertainment tax of nine percent.

Sports clubs also have to pay to the city treasury. The Krems sports club pays 40,000 euros a year to the city through the entertainment tax and stadium rental, but only gets 13,000 euros through a subsidy, as described by the president of the regional league, Georg Stierschneider. The club does not have such a large sponsor that can compensate for these expenses.


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