Bell tower, city to comply with music licensing requirements

The county supervisors agreed to share the cost of a music performance license with the city of Jefferson. The license will avoid any challenges to performance rights for all music played in Jefferson. The $1,100 cost of the license will be shared 50/50 this year, although the supervisors specified the split may be different in future years.

Peg Raney, a member of the Bell Tower Community Foundation, explained to the Jefferson city council that the question of a performance license came up as the Foundation plans for live music played at the top of the Mahanay Memorial Carillon Tower after the new bells are in place. Alan and Becky Greiner are volunteering to help schedule those performances. In his capacity as executive director of the Iowa High School Music Association, Alan Greiner has full knowledge of performance licenses. He strongly recommended obtaining the required license.

The license will cover not only music played from the bell tower, but also music played over the loudspeakers around the courthouse square, music at the Bell Tower Festival, and events like the farmers market.

The supervisors approved the expense at their April 10 meeting. The city council approved it the next day.

Jefferson city administrator Mike Palmer  told the council he had talked with the hotel/motel tax committee and that group agreed to pay for the license. However, per the city council’s policy, hotel/motel tax funds are available only through a grant process.

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