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Rand Paul Takes On Wolf Trap

Republican senator criticizes federal spending on concert venue

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, says the National Park Service is spending too much to help support the artistic operations at Wolf Trap. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, says the National Park Service is spending too much to help support the artistic operations at Wolf Trap. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Rand Paul is on the attack against government subsidies for concerts by acts like Ricky Martin and 98 Degrees.

The Kentucky Republican on Monday criticized mandates providing federal funding for the performing arts venues at Wolf Trap, the Northern Virginia park that’s a Washington, D.C.-area mecca for summer concerts.

The problem, according to Paul, is that the National Park Service has been required to commit nearly $600,000 to the artistic portion of the operations.

“It seems like a reasonable and clear division between the national park and its use as a venue for stage entertainment. However, the line seems to have recently been blurred, as the Park Service is handing over $594,000 to the Foundation to offset some of the cost of operations and production,” Paul’s office said in a statement.

The criticism from Paul is clearly directed at members of the House and Senate appropriations committees involved in drafting the last omnibus spending bill, rather than the executive branch. Paul’s office points to report language accompanying the catch-all measure to fund the government that dictates the Park Service funds flow to Wolf Trap’s artistic operations.

Contact Lesniewski at NielsLesniewski@cqrollcall.com and follow him on Twitter @nielslesniewski.

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