Officials in Pa. town want shuttered concert venue, built with $15M in tax money, reopened

Associated Press

Officials in Pennsylvania's Pocono Mountains want to bring a shuttered performing arts center back to life, seeing potential in a 12-year-old venue built with $15 million in state tax money that critics have long regarded as a mismanaged white elephant.

The Mountain Laurel Center for the Performing Arts in Pike County struggled almost immediately after opening in 2003 and last hosted a performance nearly three years ago. A 2007 state audit blasted three governors for failing to exercise oversight over the venue's construction and management.

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Elected officials in Lehman Township say they want to see the dormant venue hosting concerts again. They plan to reach out to the Philadelphia-area real estate developers who now own the property, and are working on a tax abatement program as an incentive.