No money for the museum or regional development: Did the council make the right decisions?

As we reported Thursday, the Mitchell City Council cast split votes on and therefore denied funding requests from Dakota Discovery Museum and the Regional Development Association. At $5,000 and $10,000, respectively, the amounts that the council considered giving to the groups was miniscule in comparison to the city’s overall budget. In fact, had the $15,000 been included in the budget, it would have represented 0.05 percent of the entire city budget of about $30 million.

In government budgeting, though, it’s often the politics and not the amount that determines the success of a funding request. Sure, $15,000 is a puny amount when considered within the context of a $30 million budget, but deciding whether or not to give taxpayer dollars to private entities is no small thing — no matter how small the amount.

I don’t know whether the City Council’s decisions on these two requests were right or wrong, but it’s good to know the two items received serious discussion and debate.

Do you think the council made the right moves?