City creates new fund for the arts

Money will go towards physical artwork, not performance art
By Brandon Gustafson | Aug 07, 2019

While Mukilteo won’t be getting Pearl Jam performing in town (much to the dismay of Councilmember Steve Schmalz), the City took a step in improving its aesthetics on Monday with the creation of a resolution to help fund art.

In 2017, Recreation and Cultural Services Director Jeff Price said, the City Council adopted the Mukilteo Parks, Recreation, Open Space, and Arts (PROSA) Plan.

“To fund public art, the City could embrace a policy of setting aside a specific amount of dollars per person … or a percentage of City construction projects …,” according to the plan.

The City staff recommended a fund of 25 cents per capita, which comes out to $5,338 annually. Essentially, for each Mukilteo resident, the City would put 25-cents towards this fund. Currently, Mukilteo’s population is just over 21,000, coming out to the $5,338 for the fund.

Price told councilmembers that the money could go towards either physical artwork or performance-based art, such as concerts or dancing.

At the meeting, Schmalz joked that Pearl Jam wasn’t coming to Mukilteo any time soon, while also saying physical art “stands out and has a larger impact.”

Councilmember Scott Whelpley took issue with the inclusion of performing arts in the fund.

“I thought this was about aesthetics,” he said. “This money shouldn’t be for performances.”

The council had previously discussed the possibility of a “1 percent for the arts” fund, which would use 1 percent of funds for capital projects for artwork related to the project, or to make it more aesthetically pleasing.

“I think it’s a great start, but it should be for these projects. Not for the arts in general,” Whelpley said.

Ultimately, a motion passed unanimously to create the 25-cent per capita fund for public arts funding, excluding performance-based art.



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