EDITORIAL: Cultural debate can wait

A decision must be made on art gallery and museum but there is no need for a special meeting

There’s no question that Greater Vernon politicians have ignored the plight of the community’s cultural amenities.

Both the museum and public art gallery have been allowed to languish through inaction. The facilities are too small and in some cases, artifacts are in jeopardy because of the conditions.

And the situation has worsened because elected officials and bureaucrats have been unwilling to give the museum and art gallery the same priority as the sports complex or other projects.

As a result, the frustration from art gallery and museum advocates is completely understandable.

However, at a time when finances are tight and taxpayers are feeling the pinch, those same advocates must appear to be reasonable and aware of the economic climate we live in.

That’s why pushing for a special meeting with the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee is a bad idea.

First off, GVAC already has a regular meeting scheduled for Aug. 8. Every time a meeting is held, there is a cost for staff and politicians to gather, and it is taxpayers that fork over the cash. Based on that alone, cultural matters can wait three weeks.

Secondly, GVAC has made it clear since February that it will not make any decisions on facilities until a review of all cultural services is completed. The goal of that review is to try and create efficiencies and that can only benefit residents and the cultural groups themselves.

Yes, there is a need to avoid procrastination, and action is required on a museum and art gallery. But given that the matter has dragged on for years, three more weeks isn’t a major problem.