What’s more important for the city of La Crosse–supporting public works of art, or helping visitors get around town?
That’s a $30,000 question for the city council to settle.
The council finance committee argued Thursday night over a plan to take $30,000 that was set aside for directional signs and give it to the city arts board instead.
Council member Andrea Richmond says the north-side business district was hoping to get some of that money for promotion.
“I don’t like the idea if we go through this whole budget process, and then all of a sudden we just decide, well, the arts board needs some money, but so does wayfinding,” said Richmond.
Mayor Tim Kabat says the arts board has several future projects which could use extra funding.
“It needs some additional ‘Oomph,'” Kabat said. “I felt that this was a smart move to take currently allocated funds and repurpose it for the arts board.”
Kabat criticized the idea of waiting for La Crosse County to provide funds to the arts board, claiming that county board members try to “hold the city hostage” by demanding seats on committees before approving money for city projects.
One seat on the La Crosse arts board is traditionally set aside for a county board member.