Now that we understand the structure of the NTC Foundation deals at the heart of its tax snafu, here’s an update on the impact to the groups that rent space in the aspiring arts and culture district:

At least two of the nonprofit tenants will make deals with the NTC Foundation that allow them to stay in their spaces.

Top staff at ARTS: A Reason To Survive, which gives art training and classes to at-risk kids, met with the foundation Tuesday and learned that it planned to charge them an extra “couple hundred bucks” per month starting in January, rather than the more than $1,000 the group was expecting to have to pay, said ARTS director Matt D’Arrigo.

“It’s still a lot of money for us to pay, but it’s not a crisis,” he said.

A neighboring nonprofit, Kids Included Together, which trains organizations to include kids with disabilities in their programs, had said in April it was refusing to pay the extra amount. But this week, its board voted to meet with the foundation and work out a deal whereby the organization will pay about $550 per month in exchange for some flexibility in other “primarily non-financial” terms of its lease, which is up in about a year-and-a-half anyway, said Brian Trotier, board member for the organization.

“The cumulative effect over 18 months is about $10,000, and we decided that it was in nobody’s best interest to fight a battle over that amount of money,” Trotier said.

We featured both groups in our March story that revealed that the NTC Foundation’s arts and culture district was getting pricier for tenants due to unexpected property tax bills.

In February, the city picked up the $1.25 million tab for unexpected taxes, back taxes and penalties for the NTC Foundation. The nonprofit, which is trying to turn 26 buildings there into the city’s next arts, culture and nonprofit district, ran into trouble after unexpectedly triggering property taxes by creating a for-profit company to help finance the rehabilitation of historic buildings.

The foundation’s executive director, Alan Ziter, said his organization is “doing everything we can to ensure we can retain the existing resident groups that we have here, shifting some resources from one area to another.”

I am the arts editor for VOSD. You can reach me directly at or 619.325.0531. Or you can keep up with me on Twitter @kellyrbennett or on Facebook.

Kelly Bennett

Kelly Bennett is a former staff writer for Voice of San Diego.

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