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Woodbury County board delays decision on giving $1M to LAMB theatre renovation project
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Woodbury County board delays decision on giving $1M to LAMB theatre renovation project

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SIOUX CITY — The Woodbury County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday postponed a decision to provide funding to LAMB Arts for the 625 Douglas Project, partially citing concerns surrounding the new law enforcement center funding.

Old municipal auditorium

LAMB Arts has asked Woodbury County to provide $1 million in funding to renovate the historic building at 625 Douglas St., which was built as the city's first auditorium.

LAMB Arts asked the county to provide $1 million in funding to renovate the historic building at 625 Douglas St., which was built as the city's first auditorium. LAMB's renovation costs are estimated at $17.4 million. The supervisors voted unanimously to delay a decision to a future meeting.

LAMB Executive Director Diana Wooley said the theater requires matching funds from both the city and the county to apply for some grants. 

She said the project has three goals: restore, reimagine and reveal.

It will restore the historical building to its original purpose, reimagine the interior of the building, and reveal that Sioux City is a cultural and artistic hub, according to LAMB's application. 

"We view this project as a source of pride for Siouxland," according to the application. "It will greatly enhance the corner in which it sits opposite the beautiful Woodbury County Courthouse and City Hall, adding to the historic fabric of the area."

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As of May, $7 million has been funded through several grants and donations. Most recently, $500,000 was gifted by the Bluestem Fund. The project has also received $3.3 million in state historic tax credits.

Supervisors expressed a desire to fund and support the project, but expressed concerns regarding giving that amount of funding in case it is needed for the Law Enforcement Center. 

At the meeting, the board approved use of $15.6 million of the American Rescue Act COVID-19 funding for the new Law Enforcement Center. 

If the project is denied by the state as qualifying for the funding, the county will have to pay back any used funding. 

Supervisor Keith Radig said with the ongoing LEC project, he is not willing to commit any funding at this time. 

Wooley said she was comfortable delaying the decision to give the supervisors a chance to review various funding sources.

UPDATED: Woodbury County board moves to devote $15.6M in COVID relief funds to cover higher jail costs
LAMB Theatre receives $500,000 gift for 625 Douglas Project
Sioux City is receiving $300,000 brownfield assessment grant from the EPA
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