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KFAC gets cut by tourism commission and Laughlin project still undecided

John Flavell

The Kentucky Folk Art Center funding got cut and decisions on the Laughlin Health Building are still undecided after two special meetings and the Fiscal Courts regular monthly meeting.

The city council, fiscal court, Morehead State University and the Morehead Tourism Commission all bid to allocate $25,000 to the KFAC at the start of 2018-2019 Fiscal year.

Now, half way through the Fiscal year, the Morehead Tourism Commission has rescinded their original bid by half.

“At our last board meeting it was brought up that we are seven-and-half months into this fiscal year, so we authorized our executive director to access up to half of that money if needed to meet some other obligations,” said Keith Kappes, the  chair for the Morehead Tourism Commission.   

KFAC is responsible for raising $50,000 of its $150,000 dollar a year budget, the cut in funding will short the KFAC $12,500 for the Fiscal year.

“We are certainly willing to support the folk-art center,” said Rowan County Judge Executive Harry Clark.

“We would entertain the fiscal year of 19-20, which would get us through a state budget cycle,” said Clark. “And, at that point if we don’t get any funding in the state budget cycle, we will probably have to re-address it from there.”

The proposed plan during Wednesdays Feb. 20 special meeting held by the city was to lease Laughlin to be used as a recreation center with “The purpose of focusing on community recreation,” said Mayor Laura White-Brown. “And providing a service to the citizens of the city and the county.”

The Morehead Tourism Commission announced that it had $35,000 left in their budget that they would allot to the project if it were to be considered for hosting sports tourism events.

The contract discussed was to lease Laughlin for $25,000 a month, to cover the insurance the University is responsible for, according the mayor.

Parks and Recreation would move into the building to keep up maintenance and watch over the facility.

“If we’re going to use this day-to-day, we need someone in there day to day,” said White-Brown.

Consideration for waiting till the new fiscal year in July was also proposed. The start-up for the project would be $200,000 dollars, which would be possibly split between the city, fiscal court and tourism.

Waiting would allow for a new budget and more in-depth planning to be considered.

The project will be up for discussion again Thursday, Feb. 28, during the university board of regents work session.

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