Candidates and the Arts: Randy Brunson

QUESTION #1- Public funding for the arts:

YES – I support it.

A key step would be to develop a comprehensive plan to identify, prioritize and fund arts and cultural activities with emphasis on events that will draw visitors from outside of the county.

This should be one of the benchmarks of a well conceived, well planned event.

Priority also should be given to those activities, events and programs that can leverage public resources through matching funds and grants.

Attendance numbers and dollars generated by an event should be tracked carefully to support funding requests and justify expenditures as we account ‘to the public for our funding decisions.

Advocates for art, culture and history must cooperate and coordinate with tourism interests to maximize the impact of an event and to return a good value for each dollar that our visitors spend.

QUESTION #2 – Bed tax YES – I support it.

Several U.S. cities are known for annual events that draw tens of thousands of visitors. If we want to attract more than just day visitors, we have to give people a reason to stay overnight.

There has to be enough happening that it can’t be seen in just one day. For example; Charleston SC is known for its annual week long wildlife art exposition, which Is followed by a multiple week music festival. Fort Lauderdale and Miami Beach each have annual wine and art festivals that happen over four days.

Our community has a rich heritage and can certainly identify, develop and deliver an annual multi-day event.

This would be a great use of bed tax dollars because we are looking to promote overnight stays. My question would be, why don’t
we already have such an art and cultural event happening?

You have my support.

QUESTION#:3 – Arts and Recreation. YES

Certainly art and culture can be considered recreational activities.

However this a qualified YES – because as a responsible elected official, I would want to know the specific. definition of “recreation'” and the actual proposed changes to that definition.

Also, when speaking of children and recreation; I recognize a real difference between the experiences of a child learning to appreciate art versus having the chance to be creative and artistic as a kid.

This idea of redefining recreation merits exploration and discussion and I would be open to offering our citizens more chances to get involved with the arts.

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