By PHIL KABLER
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — More than 70 days after it passed legislation eliminating the Department of Education and the Arts in the name of reducing costs and bureaucracy, the Legislature on Monday approved a bill creating the Department of Arts, Culture and History as its replacement.
Proponents of the governor’s bill insisted they are not replacing one bureaucracy with another, noting that the bill merely elevates the commissioner of Culture and History to a new title of curator of Arts, Culture and History, with no increase in salary or new staff.
“The governor wanted to make it very clear that the arts has a strong voice in his administration, and that’s what this legislation is trying to address,” said House Education Chairman Paul Espinosa, R-Jefferson.
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