Wasted Taxpayer Dollars and Grant Funds
COLUMBUS, OH – WCMH NBC 4 reported that the city of Columbus applied for and received a $2 million grant from the Andrew Mellon Foundation. The story also states, “Beyond the $2 million grant, the mayor’s office said the city would commit another $1.5 million toward public art in and around City Hall.”
Columbus City Council will vote this evening to accept the $2 million grant that will be used to pay for personnel costs and professional services along with awarding yet another no bid contract to a local consultant in the amount of $1 million in 2023 and the remaining $1 million in 2024. This is poor policy, wasteful, and reeks of impropriety. It is a complete waste of the Mellon Foundations funds that should be put to much better use.
How Ginther’s Development Department convinced the Mellon Foundation that their grant application was worthy of funding is unfathomable.
If Ginther is going to allocate $1.5 million of taxpayers money for public art, it should be spread throughout Columbus neighborhoods and include the collaboration of local artists and youth while bringing a sense of pride and community to one’s neighborhood.
$1.5 million of public art should not exclusively be installed in and around City Hall out of sight of everyday people. This is a direct act of selfishness. If Ginther wants to have public art installed around his autocratic City Hall, I am sure he can drum up donations from the dozens of campaign contributing developers who continue to make millions from of his tax abatements.