Art wars: Plan to put coordinator at Washington Pavilion called 'conflict of interest' by Sioux Falls creative community
Council pulls $68K from Mayor TenHaken's $642M budget
Sioux Falls city councilors Tuesday torpedoed plans to set up an arts coordinator position within municipal government, instead, opting for a third party to oversee a central arts planner.
But because the leading candidate to be that third party is the Washington Pavilion, the decision set off a firestorm of criticism from some in the Sioux Falls arts community, whose members say the plan creates an un-level playing field in the city’s arts ecosystem.
“It’s a huge conflict of interest. Any one of our missions are conflicting. Our missions, our programming, we compete for the same dollars and the same grants,” Sioux Falls Arts Council Executive Director Kellen Boice said while pleading to add an arts coordinator position within City Hall. “It’s an integration of the arts within the city government and working for all the citizens in Sioux Falls.”
Echoing Boice were other notable names in the Sioux Falls arts community, including Levitt at the Falls Executive Director Nancy Halverson, and Katrina Lehr-McKinney and Michael Jamison, who serve on Mayor Paul TenHaken’s Arts Task Force.
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