To Oregon Representative Ben Cannon, re the Oregon Cultural Trust

Dear Representative Cannon:

I’m going to make this short and to the point. I understand the State is facing a budget shortfall, but the Oregon Cultural Trust was designed as life raft for the arts in stormy seas; it was not designed to be the legislature’s piggy bank. The money donated to that fund, particularly through the sale of license plates, was given with the understanding that the funds were to go soley to the arts, not to the general fund, and to use these funds as such would be more than a breach of trust between legislators and the public; it would be fraud.

The State Senate has authorized raiding the Cultural Trust fund, and now the vote comes to you in the House. If you vote to violate the trust of those who have willingly donated their hard-earned money to the arts, I will no longer consider you qualified to represent Oregon’s interests in the House, and I promise I will campaign for and urge others to campaign for other qualified opponents when you face your next primary.


Steve Patterson