Posted: Feb 20, 2013 3:42 PM by Andrew Ellison - firstname.lastname@example.org
Updated: Feb 20, 2013 5:42 PM
CORPUS CHRISTI - We have another special report on where your tax dollars are going. Today, we focus on a building many of you have probably seen, if you haven't been there, the art museum on Shoreline.
The city pays the South Texas Institute of the Arts $21,000 each month.
Since it's early beginnings in the 1940's, the Art Museum of South Texas has grown from its original location in South Bluff Park to its current location on Shoreline, built in 1972.
That building received an addition in 2006, and both were built with private money and donated to the city.
Joseph Schenk is the museum director.
"We have a long standing working relationship with the city for providing visual arts activities in the Corpus Christi and south Texas area," he says.
The $250,000 the museum receives from the city each year is only 18% of it's roughly $1.4 million annual budget, most of which comes from private donations.
The money from the city goes towards operating costs, and paying off a 10 year, $90,000 loan taken out in 2006 to fix the older building's roof.
The money from the city largely comes from revenue generated by the hotel occupancy tax. As Schenk told us, the museum plays a big role in attracting tourists to the city.
"Tourists are important, and the longer we can keep tourists in our community, the more hot fund money we can generate," Schenk says.
The museum employees are hired and managed through Texas A&M Corpus Christi, but paid for mostly with private dollars.
Schenk says as the staff and museum continue to grow, it can only mean a bigger payoff for the city.
"Participation and attendance just continues to grow, and I think Corpus Christi is going to see that effort pay off in dollars for years to come," he says.
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