Tuesday, July 12, 2005

I can't afford the mortgage... but I have money for the fair!

House bill gives parks department the run of the Oregon State Fair
SALEM -- The Oregon State Fair, as we know it, would be abolished with a bill that passed the Oregon House on Monday.
I like fairs. They are usually good family fun. But if I can't afford to pay my bills then my family doesn't go. The state can't afford to lock up criminals, they certainly shouldn't be able to host a fair that loses money. So the first sentence of this story pleased me. But then:

Struggling with debt, the Oregon State Fair and Exposition Center would not cease to exist. But the fair and its Salem fairgrounds would get new management and access to additional funding by becoming part of the State Parks and Recreation Department.
The government shell game begins. Instead of saying, "gee, the fair keeps losing money, maybe we should discontinue it or find some private sponsors" they say "hey, let's take money from another budget."

Parks and Recreation stands to gain an additional $9 million in lottery proceeds with the new lottery line games. Yet, Rep. Jeff Barker, D-Aloha, said that additional revenue is not enough reason to saddle Parks and Recreation with the state fair.
Yet another program that gets money from the lottery. I'm surprised they haven't suggested raising the tobbacco tax to support the fair.

Gate receipts have not proven sufficient, however, to sustain the Oregon State Fair and Exposition Center without extra infusions of cash from the state's general fund.
Just like in the private sector... oh wait.

It is not government's job to entertain us, it is their job to provide for the public safety. Until they can do that we should not even consider funding these extras. (and we should all buy guns)


Robin said...

We are funding amtrak and now the state fair, it is all fitting however because the Oregon Legislature's just one big circus anyways.

Daniel said...

That's a great point!