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City Council Arts Policy Approved

The Red Wing City Council Monday voted 5-2 to amend the City Code Section from Arts and Culture Commission to Arts and Culture Commission and Arts Fund, and direct staff to apply the 1% art policy to city capital projects starting in 2024.

The goal is to incorporate art into capital projects from the beginning and institute a framework that requires planners, designers, and/or consultants to consider the aesthetic side of capital projects from the start.

The general policy for contributions to public construction projects is 1% for projects over $100,000. Private development of over 1-milllion dollars or more will be subject to a mandatory public arts requirement of .5 % of the construction or reconstruction cost.

Council members Kim Beise and Don Kliewer both voted no and said, despite being supportive of art projects in Red Wing, this had too many questions to approve right now. Kliewer called it a tax, plain and simple.

Board Chair Becky Norton pushed back on the idea this is a tax and said it will prove to be an economic driver for the community.

Options are available for the private sector including installation of artwork as part of the development, contribution to the fund, or a combination.

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