It’s about time. I’ve been watching the Zoo New England drama unfold in the Globe and the Herald since the incendiary headlines in Saturday’s papers and been wondering how long it would take for someone to call the Zoo’s bluff.
Now, I like the Zoo, have been there twice in the past 13 months, but I believe there are three things to keep in mind as you watch this political stand-off:
1) Apparently the Zoo’s not so poor it can’t afford it’s own PR firm.
2) The Zoo still hasn’t disclosed what the location fee was it received from the studio filming the new Kevin James movie there (Read down a few paragraphs here.)
and 3) A significant number of zoos and aquariums, including our own New England Aquarium, exist without being a line item in a state’s budget. (The Aquarium does, however, receive grants through such vehicles as the Massachusetts Cultural Council.)
As to the first point above, I am only reiterating that which my colleague Steve Poftak has made before. Entities receiving state funding should, in turn, be prevented from expending funds on lobbying for state money. Rest assured, Zoo New England is not alone in this regard.
To the second point above, it is a matter of transparency. If the Legislature overrides the Governor’s veto, it should require that, as a prerequisite for restoring the funds, the Zoo disclose the contents of the location agreement, specifically the fee the studio is paying to film there. Of custome essays best quality here course, that’s unlikely, but it’s nice to contemplate.