Kansans who believe in the value of a state arts agency and state funding for the arts were given reason to hope Thursday by a Senate committee, which passed a resolution to block Gov. Sam Brownback’s executive reorganization order abolishing the Kansas Arts Commission. Now they need to see 21 or more senators sign on in the full chamber, sparing Kansas from Brownback’s misguided plan to ax the commission in favor of a new private foundation. Doing so will reflect the outpouring of support for the commission’s work around the state, sending the message that the dollars to be saved aren’t worth the long-term damage that could be done to the cultural life of our communities and state. If the commission survives, the next challenge will be to get the state funding it needs past a hostile GOP House leadership and the governor.
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