Valdosta City Council should be commended for supporting the new Annette Howell Turner Center for the Arts with a $250,000 contribution.

The funds are derived from the current Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax and were originally designated for design costs for a new performing arts center. City officials had hoped a performing arts center would be a project in the new SPLOST approved this year, but county officials did not agree to the project. Because the performing arts center won't be built for now, city officials decided to give the money to the Lowndes-Valdosta Arts Commission for its new center.

LVAC already receives yearly funding from the city and county for its various operations, but the renovations of the old First State Bank building on Patterson Street are costing more than expected.

City officials expect to hold on to $250,000 raised in the current SPLOST for the design of a performing arts center with the expectation one will eventually be built.

The new Turner Center will be primarily for the visual arts and should become a major part of the revigorated downtown area. Cultural opportunities are considered an asset by those who determine economic and industrial development. We think it's money well spent.



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