Inside and outside of Oakland

Counties moving to cut funding to DIA if art is sold

  Now that Oakland County's commissioners have voted to withhold taxes that support the Detroit Institute of Arts if works of arts are sold during Detroit's bankruptcy process, Macomb and Wayne counties could follow suit.

  Oakland's commissioners unanimously passed a resolution Wednesday evening to urge the county's arts authority to withhold taxes if the art works are sold. The county's art authority is expected to pass a similar resolution when it meets Tuesday.
  While the county commission's resolution isn't binding on the arts authority, a similar resolution by the arts authority would be.
  Oakland County Board of Commissioners Chairman Mike Gingell said prior to the commission's meeting that he expects county commissions in Wayne and Macomb counties could take similar steps.
 "I provided our original draft to the chairs of Macomb and Wayne," said Gingell, a Lake Orion Republican. "I would anticipate they would do something similar."
  Voters in the three counties approved property taxes to support the DIA last summer. In Oakland County, the tax is 20 cents per dollar of taxable property value and it generates about $10 million for the DIA.
  Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette has also issued an opinion that DIA art can't be sold to satisfy the city's debts or obligations.

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