SAUK RAPIDS -- The arts are an essential part of having a good quality of life. The organization responsible for bringing us a lot of that entertainment is the Central Minnesota Arts Board. They are one of 11 regional arts councils created by the Minnesota State Legislature about 40 years ago.

Executive Director Leslie LeCuyer says the Land and Legacy Amendment has been a tremendous boost to helping fund the arts in the state.

In November of 2008 the voters of Minnesota decided to increase their sales tax by three-eighths of one percent, and what that has done is translate into tripling the recourses available for the arts in the state of Minnesota.  We are now #1 in appropriations for the arts in the nation, and that makes Minnesota an arts icon.

LeCuyer says their funding also comes from the State Legislature and the McKnight Foundation.

If you want to give input on how the Central Minnesota Arts Board can improve they will have a listening session at the Sauk Rapids Government Center Tuesday from 4:00 until 6:00 p.m. Another listening session will be on Thursday from 4:30 until 6:30 p.m. at Fisher's Club in Avon.