An Unfortunate Moment For The Science Center

In this local newspaper story about the Kentucky Science Center’s fancy new dead body exhibit, something caught our attention:

Haas said the science center has been working on booking the exhibit for more than a year. She said the center has a policy of not disclosing the cost of traveling exhibits. The center in recent years has had several major touring exhibits, including one on the Titanic.

Last we checked, the Science Center receives a mountain of cash from taxpayers every single year it’s in operation.

The exhibit itself is sponsored by government agencies:

Just to stretch back a few years, the Science Center received $890,000 from Metro Government in 2008:

The past year, the Science Center received $811,301.15 from Metro Government:

Well more than half of the funds it received.

And the following government agencies contributed a pretty penny this year:

  • Louisville Water Company $5,000 – $9,999
  • Kentucky Department of Tourism $1,000 – $4,999
  • Kentucky Education Savings Plan Trust $10,000 – $24,999

Maybe someone needs to have a talk with Haas, director of the joint.

When taxpayers fund you, taxpayers get to know what everything costs. Including specific prices paid to bring exhibits to town.

While we love the Science Center and have done quite a bit to promote it over the years, it’s important to point out when there’s a lack of transparency. Particularly when it comes to secrecy involving taxpayer dollars.

Hopefully Haas will remind herself to bite her tongue the next time she’s asked about how the Center is spending our cash during a time of economic hardship for the entire city.

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