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Richardson Reveals Various Arts in Government in Free Public Talk

January 15, 2009

University of Wyoming/Casper College (UW/CC) Center faculty member Bruce Richardson will discuss "Arts in U.S. and Wyoming Politics: Where Have We Been? Where Are We Going?" Friday, Jan. 23, at noon in the Strausner Student Center, Room 217 at Casper College.

Richardson, UW/CC Center senior lecturer of English, is chair of the Wyoming Arts Council and board member of the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies.

"Many may be surprised at the range and extent of U.S. government involvement in the arts," says Richardson. "A brief review of federal, state and local spending on the arts will point to some surprises: a huge music budget in the Defense Department; a theater program sponsored by the FBI; direct state allocations to symphony orchestras; Wyoming property tax allocations to municipal bands; city support of art in Green River, Jackson, Sheridan and elsewhere; Casper's city-owned arts facilities; the Wyoming Cultural Trust; and the Wyoming Arts Council. Most public U.S. arts spending is based on a philosophy of stimulus, not subsidy."

Richardson will explain the need for involvement in government and politics to help shape public arts policy. He will discuss issues that will face this session of the Wyoming legislature and those likely to go before the U.S. Congress, including arts in public buildings legislation, authorizing legislation for the Wyoming Arts Council and additional funds for the Cultural Trust. Richardson will conclude with a brief look at likely issues in the U.S. Congress, including President-elect Barack Obama's campaign proposal for a type of artist corps.

For more information, call the UW/CC Center at (307) 268-2713.

Posted on Thursday, January 15, 2009

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