Samuel Winkler // Democrat // Utah House District 42 (A+)
How have the arts, culture, and/or humanities impacted your life?
- Arts are an essential part of every aspect of my life. My wife and I were season ticket holders at the symphony, my mother is a season ticket holder at Hale Center, we visit shows at Eccles and at the local Kensington Theater and off-Broadway (before they left). Both my daughters love drawing, singing, dancing, and my eldest wants to be an artist and we encourage that in her. One daughter was a dancer. Additionally, everything from interior design, how cities are designed, bridges, walls, etc. are all part of my life and part of our arts and culture. Being Jewish, music and arts are a big part of our religion and everything from my yarmulke to my tallit is decorated and colorful - which shows the outer world more about what I feel on the inside.
Utah's humanities and arts employ 123,000 Utahns, provide $4.4 billion in earnings, and $13.2 billion in sales. This is a larger economic impact than agriculture, mining, and real estate. Do you consider the arts and cultural sector an economic driver in Utah?
Fiscally responsible government investment in the arts and humanities (including humanities and arts education) means to me:
- That we balance funding for all projects equally - whether it is a road, building, transit, etc. As funding reduces, we don't steal from one to feed another, we take (and give) equally as each are just as important as the next. Education is just as important as the arts and the arts are what allow our minds to grow and expand - to allow us to think outside the box. If we reduce funding more on this than on another, they all suffer down the line.
I support the following legislative items:
- Grants to be used for operations (jobs) as soon as possible
- Keeping emergency loans open to nonprofits
- Protecting the RAP taxes so that money granted to cultural organizations doesn't get repurposed
- Increasing availability of loans to cultural businesses (non-profit and for-profit)
- Fiscally responsible government investment in arts and humanities organizations.
- Development of cultural districts
- Facilitating partnerships between tourism and culture.
- Reducing regulations of creative businesses.
- Capital investment (in museums, performance/concert halls, studios, galleries, nonprofit office space, etc.).
- Percent for public art programs, which optionally designate 1% of government capital costs for public art
- Allowing municipalities to set design standards
- K-6 Students should have increased exposure to arts and humanities education
- 7-12 Students should have increased exposure to arts and humanities education
- I support the Beverley Taylor Sorenson Arts Learning Program which puts one arts specialist in most elementary schools
- I support the POPS (Professional Outreach Program in the Schools) which sends 13 professional arts organizations to all UT school districts
- I support the iSEE (Informal Science Educational Enhancement) which sends 10 professional science, zoological, and natural history organizations to all UT school districts
Anything else we should know about you?
- As mentioned earlier. Arts, humanities, culture - this is Utah. It doesn't matter from what race or ethnic background, rich or poor, everyone is touched by the arts. Arts (dance, music, painting, expression) are what allow us to look within ourselves, to look at how we can become better and achieve something greater. Arts affect so many parts of our lives everyday people don't even realize - or stop to think about. Television shows, songs on the radio, movies, concerts, and so much more. You don't have to agree with the topic, song or image, but it reflects positively for everyone. It's essential to our free country, our freedom of expression. Without arts, our entire country would be a less interesting place. Thank you for your time and consideration!
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