Archive for Friday, June 1, 2012

Funding for the arts restored in new state budget

June 1, 2012


— One year ago, Gov. Sam Brownback stunned arts advocates nationwide by vetoing funding for the Kansas Arts Commission.

But on Friday, Brownback, without comment, signed into law a state budget that will include $700,000 for a new Creative Arts Industries Commission.

"It's a big win for Kansas," said Sarah Fizell, spokeswoman for the Kansas Citizens for the Arts.

In 2011, Brownback defied legislators by applying a line-item veto to the $689,000 appropriation for the Arts Commission, saying that public tax dollars shouldn't go to the arts.

The action made Kansas the first state to stop state funding of the arts, and Kansas lost $1.3 million in federal and regional matching funds.

The veto caused a public outcry and reports that many arts initiatives, especially in rural areas, had to scale back their programs.

When the 2012 legislative session started, Brownback proposed merging the un-funded Arts Commission and the Kansas Film Commission into a new commission under the Kansas Department of Commerce.

In addition, Brownback proposed providing $200,000 from the Economic Development Initiatives Fund, which is derived from gaming revenue. Legislators increased that allocation to $700,000 and that is what ended up being approved. Another bill set up a tax check-off where people can make a donation to the arts on their state income tax form.

The use of gaming revenues will count as public funds for purposes of attracting grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. Fizell said several other states have a similar funding and structural model. If the state is able to get its arts plan in order and submitted, it could start receiving matching funds in July 2013, she said.

Fizell said she was glad the fight over arts funding appeared to be over. "It was solved in a way that was very collaborative. I think publicly funded art is important for the state of Kansas, and this was an enormous effort by the advocates across the state who made this happen," she said.


scaramouchepart2 6 years ago

+1 and I am sure many more from many.

Hooligan_016 6 years ago

Maybe he realized that in order to make up the projected deficit, the state needed to buff it's image up a little bit and show prospective corporations we're not completely inept.

guppypunkhead 6 years ago

Makes me wonder if he was just trying to show that he is the "boss".

Darrell Lea 6 years ago

Catch? How about not having enough revenue in the coffers to cover the proposal?

"What do you mean, I'm out of money? I still have checks!"

Sunny Parker 6 years ago

Sam, I am so disappointed in you for caving!

lunacydetector 6 years ago

all the liberal hate-filled dorks can celebrate. time to apply for some grant money for that plastic milk containered creation everyone wants to see.

beatrice 6 years ago

Were you on the Harvard debate team?

hujiko 6 years ago

"hate-filled dorks"

Careful, you're projecting.

Alyosha 6 years ago

You should try educating yourself on the reality of arts program funding in KS -- where the money actually went -- before commenting. That's the best way to make sure you don't write inane comments that have nothing to do with reality.

Unless your goal is to demonstrate how unknowedgable you are, in which case, carry on, for you are doing a wonderful job at that.

jayhawklawrence 6 years ago

Restoring the budget is not enough to restore the goodwill that was lost. That is what bad management does. They kill morale.

Patricia Davis 6 years ago

I'm glad people in western Kansas (and yes, I have lived there), were willing to stand up for art for all of us. Now having won that battle, can we work together to bring Kansas back to live and let live on things that should not matter and work together for things that do?

kumezzo 6 years ago

Dear Gov.

Good always wins over evil......and if you wondered.... art is good.

Signed, A Kansas Artist

Terry Jacobsen 6 years ago

People really left Kansas over the fact that the Governor cut funding for the arts? Hmmm.... I'd like to know the name of a single person who did that. I understand the passion for your opinion but making up stuff just makes you look foolish and desperate to prove your point, and actually doesn't do anything to make you look credible.

scaramouchepart2 6 years ago

TJ It was one of many badly implemented practices that Brownback screwed over. By realizing his changes last year backfired he might be trying to correct his mistake. I believed I said "nah".

Alyosha 6 years ago

Actually, a number of communities all across the state will perhaps now be able to fund their projects and programs that the elderly and children make use of.

Try having a clear idea of what the topic is before commenting, unless your goal like the commenter above is to demonstrate foolish ignorance. If that is your goal, though, you are doing a stellar job!

booyalab 6 years ago

Good, now we should have no problem staying within budget.

blindrabbit 6 years ago

Brownie: George W said "You did a fine job Brownie" But in this case you are a "lowdown, lily-livered, yellow bellied" skunk. One year depleting and denying the State's Arts Funding for political gain, mid-term deciding that that decision was probably detrimental to your image, serving youself up a big plate of Crow, and once it has been digested, deciding to reinstate the Arts Funding request. Hopefully, you will not realize any political gain from this two step dance, pleasing the Tea-Bag conservatives in the first place by standing up to your principles, then pleasing the moderates and progressives by giving them a carrot. What a skunk!, but glad to see the funding returned.

question4u 6 years ago

How dumb do you have to be to think that all artists, let alone supporters of the arts, are liberals? And in Kansas?

Eliminating the Arts Commission hurt the state financially, and no other state was willing to make the same foolish move. At this point it's obvious even to Brownback that he made a mistake. After a certain point, even he realized that it's not worth letting his prejudices cost the state money and reputation.

Some obviously are a little slower. Some are happy to let small arts programs die in remote parts of the state and have Kansas live up to its backward stereotypes because they think that makes some kind of political point. They actually think that the musicians at those community bluegrass festivals are raving liberals. They think that those retirees learning to paint like Thomas Kinkade in community art classes are bleeding hearts. They think that those members of the Newton Country Players who are currently performing Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat are all liberal atheists.

At least it's good to see confirmation that Brownback doesn't really have the slowest mind in the state.

verity 6 years ago

I'm going to withhold judgment until I see what this "new Creative Arts Industries Commission" is.

blindrabbit 6 years ago

question4U: If you are refering to my prior post as a source for your use of the word "liberal", you are mistaken. Even though, I consider myself to be somewhat "liberal" in my view of the world, I have quit using the term, because it has been so poisoned by those of dissimilar views; instead using "moderate" and "progressive" instead.

Just like the issue of "Global Warming" so poisoned by the likes of Limbaugh, Stossel, Reagan and the worst, oil-soaked Senator James (Mountain) Inhofe of Oklahoma I refuse to use the term instead opting "Climate Change".

As for as our current C-Street governor, I am convinced that the guy has many more political aspirations, and is attempting to draw the conservative " moths to the flame" by appearing to tweak their needs. Futher, having driven through his home territory (Parker, Kansas) I am further convinced that the guy had no prior exposure to "The Arts", sorry but true! Maybe he is having A-Ha revelation!

pace 6 years ago

Sam got rid of the art's commission and put clowns on the unfunded commission, now it is refunded. Sam should resign over his control issues.

yourworstnightmare 6 years ago

I guess this is an example of "creative destruction". Destroy something in a brash, ideological battle, and then create something new and likely less effective and efficient in its place once the damage has been done.

I thought I heard gears grinding and smelled clutch as BB shifted into reverse.

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