Murals Board Requests Funding
After over 25 years as a major tourist draw the murals of Moose Jaw are in need of some repair to insure their longevity and the Murals of Moose Jaw was at Budget Committee to request funding from the City.
Norma Westguard, chair of Murals of Moose Jaw appeared before Budget Committee to request an additional $9,000 to cover extra repairs needed to repair the murals.
“Most were painted in the 1990’s and need repair to stop falling apart,” she said, adding “we spend this money now or we let them deterioate. Its cheaper than $25,000 to $30,000 to replace them.”
Westguard said there were hopes to return to the group’s regular budget in 2020 after it was cut by the Province and the City.
“Had our budget not been in 2016 we would have been able to repair the murals within our budget.”
Asked by Councillor Chris Warren to clarify her statements about the cuts in the Murals of Moose Jaw funding Westguard blamed it on austerity.
“In 2016 it (budget for the Murals of Moose Jaw) was completely eliminated when Saskatchewan cut back of Moose Jaw and Moose Jaw cut back on us,” she replied.
In 2018 Murals of Moose Jaw received $12,900 from the City. The group had unexpected funds of $13,466 carried forward to 2019 bringing available budget funds to $26,366.
The request for the additional $9,000 makes there total requested $22,500 in 2019.
Speaking at 2018 Budget Committee former Councillor Don Mitchell called Murals of Moose Jaw one of the most budget conscience board out there.
Murals of Moose Jaw is a Third Party Board who maintains, promotes and commissions new murals around the city. They also pay for the printing and distribution of the murals guide available at tourist information centres in the region and elsewhere.
The murals grew out of the 1980’s moves to make Moose Jaw a tourism destination in order to stimulate economic development. Thousands of people have viewed the murals which tell the history of the city and the region. Travelocity reviews lists the murals as a leading attraction with tourists consistently four out of five stars and higher.