Indio extends development contract with Coachella Music Festival until 2050

Indio will continue to be the home of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival until at least 2050.

Indio City Council on Wednesday approved a decade-long extension of the development contract between the city and Goldenvoice LLC, the company that has hosted the festival since 1999.

The extension was approved 3: 1, although Councilor Oscar Ortiz disagreed. Mayor Elaine Holmes apologized from the discussion and raised a dispute as she owns property within 300 meters of the festival site.

Last month, Goldenvoice LLC and Coachella Music Festival LLC requested a change to the development contract with the city to extend its term to a total of 37 years. It includes the original 17-year agreement and an additional term of 20 years.

In their application, Goldenvoice and Coachella Music Festival stated that the extension was necessary “to ensure the long-term public benefit of the Coachella Music and Arts and Stagecoach Country Music Festivals”.

A few residents called the council meeting to say that if the statement made in the question was correct, they would like to see a direct economic benefit for the city in the regulation. Others said the festival caused more problems than it was worth.

“This money should be used for residential programs like parks, programs and things for our families. This is all very blurry and the residents are not clear what the benefit is, other than that we can only say that Coachella is here, ”said one caller.

“Will the company get a cheaper rate for police bills anywhere else than Indio? Will Palm Springs allow them to haul 17 Beyoncé trucks through the busiest streets? No, but Indio has,” asked another caller.

On the contrary, Councilor Glenn Miller, who was mayor at the time of signing the first renewal contract with Goldenvoice, said that public safety expenses or road signage for direct concert traffic are all paid for by Goldenvoice.

“Not a dollar comes out of the pocket of the city of Indio. So we benefit from the money that comes in here from ticket sales,” he said, adding that the benefits were not just in Indio, but in the entire valley. “They are spending thousands and thousands of dollars in our community so that our residents work everywhere, not just Indians,” he said.

Miller also credits the Goldenvoice partnership with providing international opportunities: “We’re the city of festivals, we’re proud of that,” he said.

Indio lost millions to the cancellations of its Goldenvoice festivals amid the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. In 2019 alone, the city made over $ 3.5 million in ticket sales and taxes from Coachella and Stagecoach. While Indian officials have repeatedly said the city’s budget wasn’t impacted too much, many local businesses that relied on festival revenue said they were struggling.

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The amendment to the development agreement continues to allow five major music festivals a year, with no more than three events taking place on consecutive weekends and the same attendance of 125,000 people as currently allowed.

The next Coachella Valley Music Festival is for the weekends 15-17. and 22.-24. Scheduled April 2022, with Travis Scott and Rage Against the Machine as headlines. Stagecoach, the country counterpart also by Goldenvoice, is scheduled for April 29th to May 1st, 2022.

Eliana Perez covers the eastern Coachella Valley. You can reach her at eliana.perez@desertsun.com or on Twitter @ElianaPress.