Las Vegas will continue to fund local arts projects with a regular, 1-percent set-aside from the city’s annual capital-improvements budget.
The City Council voted 6-1 to reject Councilman Bob Beers’ proposal to replace the set-aside with an annual donation to be set by the council. The budget mandate has funded about $1.4 million in arts projects over the last eight years, including memorial statues and the large paintbrushes in the Arts District downtown.
Councilman Bob Coffin, who represents much of the downtown area, said he doesn’t support mandated set-asides as part of the general fund budget, but because this comes from the city’s capital improvement program, he supported the fund. Mayor Carolyn Goodman said great cities have great art.
Some local arts supporters had attended the morning council meeting, but four hours of discussion concerning investment-fund management seemed to chase most of the would-be speakers from the council meeting. There was no public comment for or against the Beers’ proposal.