Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer's call for setting aside one percent of the annual municipal budget ("One Percent for Culture campaign is growing" - February 7) would cost taxpayers $700 million assuming the upcoming fiscal budget comes in at $70 billion.
This sounds great before one looks at the cost. Many would argue with a pending multi-billion dollar shortfall that expenditures supporting police, fire, sanitation, education, health, housing and transportation are higher priorities.
In these lean times, executives of non-profit cultural organizations can set an example for others. They could take a pay cut and donate some of the excessive compensation or consider giving up some perks to help their institutions' bottom lines. Most New Yorkers do not make $100,000 per year, yet here are thousands of executives and employees of private non-profit cultural organizations who make $100,000 or more.
Why is Van Bramer silent concerning the August 2011 investigation by Governor Andrew Cuomo into the exorbitant salaries of chief executives at some of the same so-called private non-profit cultural organizations he supports.
Before shedding tears for leaders of private non-profit institutions when they protest potential budget cuts from the city, state or federal governments, check out their respective organization's finances, especially salaries to their executive management team.