TOPEKA (AP) -- Governor Sam Brownback has replaced the chairman
of the Kansas Arts Commission, who's been a vocal critic of Brownback's push to eliminate state funding for the arts.
And former Chairman Henry Schwaller (SHWAH'-lur) said Monday that Brownback's move is an attempt to shift the conversation away
from decisions that made Kansas the first state in the nation to eliminate funding for its arts programs.
But Brownback spokeswoman Sherriene Jones-Sontag said the move will help the transition to private funding for state arts programs.
The new chairwoman is Linda Browning Weis, a Manhattan resident with an extensive background in music and music education. She's
also president of a nonprofit foundation that Brownback had hoped
would supplant the commission.
Brownback vetoed the commission's entire budget late last month.