Arts advocates to demand return of Kan. funding

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) – Kansas Citizens for the Arts plans to have a Statehouse news conference to demand that legislators and Gov. Sam Brownback reinstate state funding for the arts next year.

Tuesday’s event will include comments from Kansas House Minority Leader Paul Davis, a Lawrence Democrat.

The Republican governor pushed this year to abolish the Kansas Arts Commission and have arts programs rely more on private funding. Legislators rejected the idea, but Brownback vetoed the $689,000 lawmakers set aside for the Arts Commission and its authority to retain its small staff.

Those moves didn’t eliminate the commission, and Brownback has replaced seven of its 12 members.

The decision led the federal government and a regional arts alliance to deny Kansas funding, a loss of about $1.3 million.

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AP-WF-08-29-11 0902GMT