Wendy Davis // Democrat // Utah House District 45 (A+)
How have the arts, culture, and/or humanities impacted your life?
- My journey with the arts began when I was 14 years old—that was the year I started high school. I became active in theater in high school, and I served as the stage manager for three years. We produced a fall and spring production, and we also competed in contest play (a state-wide theater competition for high schools). The first play I was part of at contest play was a titled “Girl in the Mirror.” That show is as relevant today as it was in 1985. My involvement in theater was so important to my development and influenced my interest in the arts.
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 state and local government invest in the arts and humanities because it is an investment in our economy, our infrastructure and is an important component of our culture. Investment can come in many ways including public-private partnerships, earmarked state funding, tax revenue. Government supported arts makes the arts and humanities more accessible to all Utahns and not just the elites.
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?
- Filling out this questionnaire reminded me of so many amazing experiences I have had. So, thank you for prompting me to remember!
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